May 18, 2009
The US death unit killed Bhutto because she had told Al-Jazeera TV about the assassination of Osama Bin Laden, Hersh said.
The US leadership did not want Osama to be declared dead. It would have raised questions about the US Army’s presence in Afghanistan, he claimed.
According to Hersh, the former Lebanese PM Rafique Al Hariri and the army chief were murdered for not safeguarding US interests and for refusing to set up US military bases in Lebanon.
Ariel Sharon, the then prime minister of Israel, was also a key man in the plot, he said. (ANI)
Update: Hersh told RAW STORY Investigative News Editor Larisa Alexandrovna that he made no such statements (this seems an old trick to discredit emerging truths)
Anyway, here is a clip: "Northern Europeans are the happiest people on the planet, according to a new survey.
The Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development says people in Denmark, Finland and the Netherlands are the most content with their lives. The three ranked first, second and third, respectively, in the OECD's rankings of "life satisfaction," or happiness.
Northern Europeans pay some of the highest taxes in the world. Danes pay about two-thirds of their income in taxes. Why be so happy about that? It all comes down to what you get in return.
The Encyclopedia of the Nations notes that Denmark was one of the first countries in the world to establish efficient social services with the introduction of relief for the sick, unemployed and aged.
It says social welfare programs include health insurance, health and hospital services, insurance for occupational injuries, unemployment insurance and employment exchange services. There's also old age and disability pensions, rehabilitation and nursing homes, family welfare subsidies, general public welfare and payments for military accidents. Moreover, maternity benefits are payable up to 52 weeks.
Simply, you pay for what you get. Taxes in the U.S. have taken on a pejorative association because, well, we are never really quite sure of what we get in return for paying them, other than the world's biggest military...." Read all here
Ah, and speaking of happiness, see this article just published on Sott: Flashback: The happiness conspiracy
Excerpts: "...As higher systems of meaning have withered, life purpose has dwindled to feeling good. Innocence, the lifeblood of happiness, is obsolete. We live on cultural soil perfectly suited for depression.
Other happiness blockers include materialism, perpetual discontent, over-complication, hyper-competition, stress, rage, boredom, loneliness and existential confusion. We're removed from nature, married to work, adrift from family and friends, spiritually starved, sleep deprived, physically unfit, dumbed down, and enslaved to debt.
Health professionals face new epidemics of 'hurry sickness', 'toxic success syndrome', the 'frantic family', the 'over-commercialized child' and 'pleonexia' or out-of-control greed. Too much is no longer enough. Many are stretching themselves so far that they have difficulty feeling anything at all. At its heart the happiness boom is a metaphor for the modern struggle for meaning.
We laugh only a third as often as we did 50 years ago - hence the huge popularity of laughter clubs and laughter therapy. We make love less frequently and enjoy it less, even though sex is now largely deregulated and available in endless guilt-free varieties. Yet we're the least happy society in history if we measure happiness in terms of mental health, personal growth, or general sense of aliveness.
A society's dominant value system dictates how happiness is measured. The native Navajos in the southwest of the US saw happiness as the attainment of universal beauty, or what they called Hózhó. Their counterpart of 'Have a nice day' was 'May you walk in beauty'.
Personal satisfaction is the most common way of measuring happiness today (via something called the Life Satisfaction Scale). This mirrors the supreme value that consumer culture attaches to the romancing of desire and the satiation of the self. When measured this way, almost everyone seems pretty happy - even if it's primarily false needs being satisfied. A high percentage of depressed people even end up happy when 'personal satisfaction' is the yardstick.
By the middle of the 19th century, social critics were already noticing how happiness was losing its social, spiritual, moral and intellectual anchors and becoming a form of emotional masturbation. In his classic 1863 work, Utilitarianism, John Stuart Mill scorned this trend: 'Better to be Socrates dissatisfied than a fool satisfied,' he opined. ...
...The backlash against today's narcissistic happiness is rekindling interest in the ancient Greek philosophers who equated happiness with virtue. Especially celebrated by them were loyalty, friendship, moderation, honesty, compassion and trust. Research shows that all these traits are in steep decline today - despite being happiness boosters. Like true love and true happiness, they have become uneconomic. ...
...When author John Updike warned, 'America is a vast conspiracy to make you happy,' he was referring to the superficial mass happiness that prevails when economics successfully conspires to define our existence. I profit, therefore I am. To be happy, gulp something. Pay later. Novelist JD Salinger was so unnerved by the happiness conspiracy that he confessed: 'I'm a kind of paranoiac in reverse. I suspect people are plotting to make one happy.' The wrong type of happiness is worse than no happiness at all.
Governments are the biggest players in the happiness conspiracy. Any political action aimed at a more people-friendly or planet-friendly happiness is certain to be met with fierce resistance. The best consumers are itchy narcissists who hop, skip and jump from one fleeting desire to the next, never deeply satisfied, but always in the process of satisfying themselves. Our entire socio-economic system is designed to spew out this type of 'ideal citizen'. Contentment is the single greatest threat to the economics of greed and consumer happiness.
Our ignorance of happiness is revealed by the question on everyone's lips: 'Does money make us happy?' The head of a US aid agency in Kenya commented recently that volunteers are predictably dumbstruck and confused by the zest and jubilance of the Africans. It's become a cliché for them to say: 'The people are so poor, they have nothing - and yet they have so much joy and seem so happy.'
I never knew how measly my own happiness was until one day in 1978 when I found myself stranded in a remote western Tanzanian village. I saw real happiness for the first time - since then I have learned that it has vastly more to do with cultural factors than genetics or the trendy notion of personal 'choice'.
So it didn't surprise me that an African nation, Nigeria, was found recently to be the world's happiest country. The study of 'happy societies' is awakening us to the importance of social connectedness, spirituality, simplicity, modesty of expectations, gratitude, patience, touch, music, movement, play and 'down time'. ..." Read all here
Most Popular Posts of the Week:
- The Prison System Expands at Frightening Pace Following Declaration of War on Drugs
- Michel Chossudovsky: The Anti-Globalization Movement and the World
- Black Eagle Fund, the Shadow CIA and the relationship to Sept. 11th
- UKIP's Godfrey Bloom Blasts Fractional Reserve Lending as Fraud; Says Central Bankers Should be Tried for Financial Crimes
- THE COLLAPSE OF FIAT MONEY BY A FALLING ENERGY SUPPLY
- THE SATURDAY ESSAY:What else are they manipulating?
- Folly of Preserving the Euro at All Costs; Should France Lead Breakup of Euro?
- This Crisis Is 30 Times Bigger Than Greece
- Europe's EUR 500 Billion Ticking NPLTime Bomb
- You Are a Guinea Pig - How Americans Became Exposed to Biohazards in the Greatest Uncontrolled Experiment Ever Launched