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Top 10 Censored News Stories
You Must Read

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Have you ever read a news story on the internet and wondered why it wasn’t being
broadcasted on any of the numerous news stations, magazines, newspapers, or journals
in your area of the world?  A story that has cultural and international impact might go
unnoticed, meanwhile Paris Hilton being released from prison is the lead story of the
evening.  It is no secret that governments have control over what gets broadcasted on
television in all areas of the world.  I have collected a list of 10 recent news stories that
have managed to get overlooked by the media.

10. Ecuador Challenges Legitimacy of Foreign Debt

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In November of 2008, Ecuador became the first country to undertake an examination
of the legitimacy and structure of its foreign debt.  In the 1970s Ecuador fell victim to
unscrupulous international lending, which encouraged borrowing at low interest rates.
From 1970 to 2006 the country’s debt grew from $1.174 billion to over $14.250
billion, a twelve fold increase.  US banks and Federal Reserve raised the interest rate on
their loan from 6% in 1979 to 21% in 1981.  An independent debt audit commissioned
by the government of Ecuador documented hundreds of allegations of irregularity,
illegality, and illegitimacy in contracts of debt to predatory international lenders.  The
loans, according to the report, violated Ecuador’s domestic laws, US Securities and
Exchange Commission regulations, and general principles of international law.
 

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It was revealed that Salomon Smith Barney, now part of Citigroup Inc., issued
unauthorized restructuring of Ecuador’s debt in 2000 that lead to exorbitant interest
rates, which, combined with extensive borrowing by former dictators, has damaged the
country.  Over the years, Ecuador has made debt payments that far exceed the principal it
borrowed.  Every dollar spent on international credit means less is available for fighting
poverty.  Under the World Bank system, which oversees investment treaties, there is no
public accountability, no standard judicial ethics rules, and no appeals process for
illegitimate international debt.  Ecuador has asked for a review of international norms
on the regulation of the foreign debt market.  In June 2009, Ecuador announced that it
had reached an agreement with 91% of creditors to buy back its debt for 35 cents on the
dollar.  This is an interesting story that was not reported anywhere in the mainstream
media.
   

Sources:
Alternet, November 26, 2008
Title: “As Crisis Mounts, Ecuador Declares Foreign Debt Illegitimate and Illegal”
Author: Daniel Denvir


Utube, Fall 2008
Title: “Invalid Loans to Ecuador: Who Owes Who”
Producer: Committee for the Integral Audit of Public Credit


Foreign Policy in Focus, December 15, 2008
Title: “Ecuador’s Debt Default”
Authors: Neil Watkins and Sarah Anders

9. Hurricane Katrina Aftermath

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In 2005, Hurricane Katrina struck the area of New Orleans and the storm surge led to 53
levee breaches in the federally built levee system protecting metro New Orleans and the
failure of the 40 Arpent Canal levee flooding 80% of the city.  Chaos ensued and over
300,000 residents attempted to evacuate the area. 
During the disaster the National
Guard designated the Algiers Point ferry landing as an official evacuation site, where
flood victims were to be loaded onto buses headed for safety in Texas.  Algiers Point is
a predominantly white area of the city, while the rest of Algiers is predominantly
black
citizens.  In the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, looting, violence and other criminal
activity became a serious problems.
 

The looters included gangs of armed gunmen, and gunfire was heard all over the city.
"Sniper fire" was also reported throughout the area, targeted at rescue helicopters, relief
workers, and police officers.  One report of violence involved police killing six people
on the Danziger Bridge.  In the
Algiers Point area people began to target individuals of
the other race.  White vigilante groups were formed, which patrolled the streets of New
Orleans.  They are estimated to have killed a total of 11 African American victims.
White individuals were also murdered during the days following the flooding of New
Orleans.  The local police have never conducted investigations into these crimes.

Sources:
The Nation, December 17, 2008 Title: “Katrina’s Hidden Race War”
Author: A.C. Thompson


The Nation, December 18, 2008
Title: “Body of Evidence”
Author: A.C. Thompson

8. The Death of Mike Connell

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One of the most mysterious and under reported deaths in recent history is that of Mike
Connell.  Mike Connell was Karl Rove’s chief IT consultant who died in a private plane
crash in 2008.  At the time of his death Connell was facing a subpoena in connection
with 2004 Presidential election fraud in Ohio.  Connell was allegedly the central figure
in a longstanding plot to electronically flip votes to Republicans in the 2004 U.S.
election.  In July 2008, Connell was named as a key witness in the case, which was filed
against Ohio Secretary of State Kenneth J. Blackwell on August 31, 2006.  It charged
Blackwell with racially discriminatory practices, including the selective purging of
voters from the election rolls and the unequal allocation of voting machines to various
districts.  Blackwell also faced charges of depriving the plaintiffs of their voting rights,
including the right to have their votes successfully cast without intimidation, dilution,
cancellation or reversal by voting machine or ballot tampering.
 

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The ultimate accusation was that the Bush campaign electronically stole the Ohio 2004
election.  Connell was an experienced pilot. His plane had been recently serviced. He
had been in the nation’s capital on still-unknown business before his single engine plane
crashed December 22, 2008 on the way home, just three miles short of the runway in
Akron, Ohio.  The cause of the crash remains unknown.  At the time of his death, the
only mainstream news outlet in the U.S. to even mention Connell’s death and the
controversies surrounding his involvement in electronic voting was a single CBS/AP
story.  The extreme vulnerability of electronic voting systems is a major issue in the
U.S.  The case against the state of Ohio fizzled after the death of Connell.
 

Sources:
The Raw Story, September 29, 2008
Title: “Republican IT consultant subpoenaed in case alleging tampering with 2004 election”
Authors: Larisa Alexandrovna and Muriel Kane


The Brad Blog, December 22, 2008
Title:  “OH Election Fraud Attorney Reacts to the Death of Mike Connell“
Author: Brad Friedman


Democracy Now! December 22, 2008
Title: “Republican IT Specialist Dies in Plane Crash”
Interviewee:  Mark Crispin Miller

7. U.S. Companies Have Overseas Tax Havens

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Swiss Bank

A 2008 study done by the Government Accountability Office (GAO) reported that 83 of
the top publicly held US companies have operations in tax havens like the Cayman
Islands, Bermuda, and the Virgin Islands.  This means that these companies put billions
of dollars in overseas banking organizations in order to avoid U.S. tax.  Fourteen of
these companies, including AIG, Bank of America, and Citigroup, received money from
the government bailout.  According to the Department of Justice, Swiss banking giant
UBS has enabled wealthy Americans to use tax schemes, some of which are illegal, to
cheat the IRS out of billions of dollars.  The major international locations for hiding
funds include Austria, Luxembourg, the Channel Islands, Singapore, Hong Kong,
Andorra, Monaco, and Gibraltar.  In the Caribbean, the established havens are the
Bahamas, Bermuda, and the Cayman Islands.
 

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A Goldman Sachs Tower

In December 2008, the bank holding company Goldman Sachs reported its first quarterly
loss. On the heels of this announcement, Goldman Sachs issued a statement confirming
that its tax rate was dropping from 34.1% to 1%, reportedly due to “changes in the
geographic earnings mix.”  This means that the company moved almost all of its money
shares out of the U.S. in order to gain a better tax rate in a different country.  Goldman
Sachs, which got $10 billion and debt guarantees from the US government in October
2008, expects to pay only $14 million in taxes worldwide for 2008, compared with $6
billion in 2007.  The problem is much larger than Goldman Sachs.  The issue is
being investigated and thousands of US taxpayers with Swiss bank accounts face the
prospect of IRS examination of their bank documents.  These individuals could face
prosecution and/or civil litigation.

Sources:
Bloomberg, December 16, 2008
Title: “Goldman Sachs’s Tax Rate Drops to 1% or $14 Million”
Author: Christine Harper


The Huffington Post, February 23, 2009
Title “Gimme Shelter:  Tax Evasion and the Obama Administration”
Author: Thomas B. Edsall

6. Oil and Gas Companies Move Into the Amazon Rainforest

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The Amazon Rainforest is the largest, species-rich, biodiverse rainforest on earth.
Recently, vast areas of the Amazon Rainforest have been opened for oil and gas
exploration, putting some of the planet’s most pristine land at risk.  Many areas of the
Amazon could someday be filled with oilrigs and pipelines.  Multi-international oil and
gas companies use zoned areas for exploration and development.  These zones now
cover the Amazon in Bolivia, Colombia, Ecuador, Peru, and western Brazil.
 

The western Amazon is also home to many indigenous ethnic groups, including some of
the world’s last uncontacted people living in voluntary isolation.  The last true examples
of biological and cultural diversity could be disturbed by oil companies.  The real
concern is when exploration is successful and a zone moves into the development phase,
because that’s when the roads, drilling, and pipelines come in.  Oil and gas blocks now
cover more than 700,000 square kilometers in the western Amazon.  Growing global
demands are stimulating unprecedented levels of new oil and gas exploration, even in
the untamed Amazon Rainforest.
  

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5. European Environmental and Consumer Safety Bill

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In recent years a European model has been proposed that insists upon environmental and
consumer safety laws for all produced sellable goods.  It requires that thousands of
chemicals finally be assessed for their potentially toxic effects on human beings.  It
would put an end to the American industry’s ability to withhold critical data from the
public.  US deregulation of toxic substances, such as lead in lipsticks, mercury in
electronics, and phthalates (endocrine disruptors) in baby toys, may not only pose
disastrous consequences to America’s health, but also to its economic and political
status in the world.  Europe has launched stringent new regulations that require
companies seeking access to their lucrative markets to eliminate toxic substances and
manufacture safer electronics, automobiles, toys and cosmetics.

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Numerous dangerous chemicals have been identified via the European Union’s 2007
Registration, Evaluation, Authorization and Restriction of Chemicals law.  Hundreds of
companies located in the US produce or import hundreds of chemicals designated as
dangerous by the European Union.  Large amounts of these chemicals are being
produced in 37 U.S. states.  According to the Environmental Protection Agency only
5% of all chemicals in the US have undergone even minimal testing for their toxicity or
environmental impact.  It is a true worldwide problem that needs to be addressed and
adapted to.

Sources:
Scientific American, September 30, 2008
Title: “European Chemical Clampdown Reaches Across Atlantic”
Author: David Biello


Environmental Defense Fund, September 30, 2008
Title: “How Europe’s New Chemical Rules Affect US”


Democracy Now! February 24, 2009
Title: “US Lags Behind Europe in Regulating Toxicity of Everyday Products”
Author: Mark Schapiro

4. The Shearon Harris Nuclear Generating Station

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The Shearon Harris Nuclear Generating Station is one of the largest nuclear power
plant’s in the United States.  It is located in New Hill, North Carolina about 20 miles
southwest of Raleigh. 
The plant contains the largest radioactive waste storage pools in
the country.  It is not just a nuclear-power-generating station, but also a repository for
highly radioactive spent fuel rods from two other nuclear plants.  The spent fuel rods are
transported by rail and stored in four densely packed pools filled with circulating cold
water from Harris Lake to keep the waste from heating.  The U.S. Department of
Homeland Security has marked Shearon Harris as one of the most vulnerable terrorist
targets in the nation.
 

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However, a threat exists without a terrorist attack.  Should the cooling system
malfunction, the
resulting fire would be virtually unquenchable and could trigger a
nuclear meltdown, putting thousands of residents of this rapidly growing section of
North Carolina in extreme peril.  Labs have conducted studies that estimate that a pool
fire could cause 140,000 cancers, contaminate thousands of square miles of land, and
cause over $500 billion in off-site property damages.
  
 

The Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) has estimated that there is a 1:100 chance
of pool fire happening under the best of scenarios.  In 1999, the plant experienced four
emergency shutdowns.  A few months later, in April 2000, the plant’s safety monitoring
system, designed to provide early warning of a serious emergency failed.  In the spring
of 2003 there were four emergency shutdowns of the plant, including three over a four
day period.  One of the incidents occurred when the reactor core failed to cool down
during a refueling operation, the reactor dome was off of the plant.  It was a potentially
catastrophic series of circumstances.

Source:
CounterPunch, August 9, 2008
Title: “Pools of Fire”
Author: Jeffrey St. Clair

Student Researchers: Krisden Kidd and Karene Schelert
Faculty Evaluator: Heidi LaMoreaux, PhD
Sonoma State University

3. U.S. Schools Are Segregated

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According to a new Civil Rights report published at the University of California, Los
Angeles, schools in the U.S. are more segregated today then in the 1950’s.  44% of all
children in the U.S. education program are non-white.  Minority groups are rapidly
emerging as the majority in the American public school system.  Latinos and blacks, the
two largest minority groups, attend schools more segregated today than during the civil
rights movement forty years ago, two of every five students attend intensely segregated
schools.  The Civil Rights Study showed that the most severe segregation in public
schools is in the western states, including California, not in the south, as many people
believe.  Most non-Caucasian schools are segregated by poverty as well as race.  They
are highly unequal in terms of funding, qualified teachers, and curriculum.
 

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The report indicates that schools with high levels of poverty have weaker staffs, fewer 
high-achieving peers, health and nutrition problems, residential instability, single-parent
households, and a high exposure to crime and gangs.  Low-income campuses are more
likely to be ignored by college and job market recruiters.  This is leading to large
numbers of virtually unemployable young people of color.  85% of the nation’s teachers
are white.  This spiraling trend is a direct threat to the economic and social future of the
general population.  Of 8.3 million rural white students, 73% attend schools that are 80
to100 percent white.  This trend needs to be reversed or the U.S. will be diminishing its
common potential.  A parent in the U.S. will tell you that the number one concern after
their child’s health is getting them into a good school.  Families often relocate for this
single purpose.

Sources:
The Civil Rights Project, UCLA, January 2009
Title: “Reviving the Goal of an Integrated Society: A 21st Century Challenge”
Author: Gary Orfield


Student Researchers:  Melissa Robinson and Rena Hawkins
Faculty Evaluator:  Sangeeta Sinha, PhD
Southwest Minnesota State University

2. U.S. Government Greatly Influenced by Finance Industry

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Information has come to light that suggests that the Unites States Government is being heavily
influenced by a small sector of the finance industry.  In 2008, at the height of the mortgage crisis
the U.S. Government created a bailout program titled the Troubled Assets Relief Program
(TARP).  It allowed
the United States Department of the Treasury to purchase or insure up to
$700 billion of "troubled" assets. 
The money was to be given to the struggling Wall Street and the
financial sector.  It created much debate and criticism in congress and among the American
people.  One might question why the U.S. government was being so generous to the financial
institutions.  It could have something to do with the fact that lawmakers and high-ranking officials
of the U.S. Government receive millions of dollars in campaign contributions from these
investment-banking firms annually.  Some of the top recipients of contributions from companies 
receiving Troubled Assets Relief Program (TARP) money are the same members of congress
who chair committees charged with regulating the financial sector and overseeing the effectiveness
of this unprecedented government program.  You could say that the finance industry got their
money’s worth by supporting members of Congress during their personal campaigns.
 

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We have not even reached the truly shocking aspects of this story.  In 2009, a new series of
government operations have been invented to inject money into the economy.  You won’t hear
about these programs on your national news station.  On a much larger scale then the TARP the
Federal Reserve has quietly been pumping not billions, but trillions of dollars into the hands of
private financial companies.  The new activity by the Federal Reserve completely eclipses the
TARP program in terms of its influence on the economy.  No one knows who’s getting that
money or exactly how much of it is disappearing.  Many have the fear that this action is leading to
a gradual takeover of the government by a small class of connected insiders, who use money to
control elections, buy influence and systematically weaken financial regulations.  The heads of the
U.S. Government have been busy passing bills and bailing out the financial sector, while receiving
fundraising from the same companies.  Where do you think the money involved with the bailouts
is coming from?  It is weakening our economy and raising your federal taxes.  Since this story
was released these major financial institutions have scaled back their overall giving in the first
quarter of 2009.
 

Sources:
Truthout, October 2, 2008
Title: “Lax Oversight? Maybe $64 Million to DC Pols Explains It”
Author: Greg Gordon


Capitol Eye, February 10, 2009
Title: “Congressmen Hear from TARP Recipients Who Funded Their Campaigns”
Author: Lindsay Renick Mayer


Rolling Stone, March 19, 2009
Title: “The Big Takeover”
Author: Matt Taibbi

1. Nuclear Waste is being Dumped in the Waters of Somalia

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In 1991, the government of Somalia collapsed.  Foreign nations seized the opportunity
to begin looting the country’s food supply and using the country’s unguarded waters as
a dumping ground for nuclear and other toxic waste.  Yes dumping nuclear waste
directly into the ocean.  According to the High Seas Task Force (HSTF), there were over
800 IUU fishing vessels in Somali waters at one time in 2005, taking advantage of
Somalia’s inability to police and control its own waters and fishing grounds.  Poaching
in these waters has become a serious problem.  Unidentified vessels poach an estimated
$450 million in seafood from Somali waters annually.  In so doing, they steal an
invaluable protein source from some of the world’s poorest people and ruin the
livelihoods of legitimate fishermen.
 

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Allegations of the dumping of toxic waste in these waters has been rumored for years.  It
was confirmed after the 2004 tsunami hit the coast of Somalia and washed up a plethora
of rusting containers of toxic waste.  The barrels were smashed open by the force of the
tsunami.  Many different kinds of waste were revealed.  There was uranium radioactive
waste, lead, and heavy metals like cadmium and mercury, also industrial wastes, hospital
wastes, chemical wastes, you name it.  Since the containers came ashore, hundreds of
residents have fallen ill, suffering from mouth and abdominal bleeding, skin infections
and other ailments.  The practice helps fuel the eighteen-year-old civil war in Somalia,
as companies pay Somali government ministers and/or militia leaders to dump their
waste.
  
 

Unfortunately, the UN and the region’s maritime authorities are ignoring the violations.
One of the biggest mainstream media stories of the year in the U.S. was the kidnapping
of American captain Richard Phillips by the “Somali Pirates.”  Nothing is mentioned of
the current poaching and nuclear waste problems in the waters. 

Sources:
Al Jazeera English, October 11, 2008
Title: “Toxic waste behind Somali piracy”
Author: Najad Abdullahi


Huffington Post, January 4, 2009
Title: “You are being lied to about pirates”
Author: Johann Hari


WardheerNews, January 8, 2009
Title: “The Two Piracies in Somalia:  Why the World Ignores the Other”
Author: Mohamed Abshir Waldo

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Comments:
 

Lin - October 2, 2009
Keep it coming! Many Thanks.

David - November 3, 2009
Is it possible these stories were not broadcasted because of lack of sources and
credibility?  These that you mention start out believable and get more and more
conspiratorial.  Some do not give good facts or conclusions but just raise questions
leading the reader to think there is more behind the story than is stated.  I have read
about 1, 2 feeds the belief in Jews controling the world, 3 & 6 are just silly, 4 says there
is no problem but OMG there could be problem, but there is none now. 9 has a single
source oh wait it claims 2 sources, both are the same man. 

Andy - May 18, 2010
oooooh I have a good example! Las Vegas suppressed the non-local media
coverage of the 1999 robbing spree, where a cuban born russian commando went
full blown, body armor, machine gun attack, robbing 6 casinos and 2 armored cars,
killing people & actually getting away from every robbery in the absolute heart of
Las Vegas...covered in the book "storming las vegas"- came here through stumble
& had to share.

Bryan - May 20, 2010
Good Call Andy, that is a good example of a censored story.

Milander - May 22, 2010
Regarding the scouts controversy.  While I cannot speak for American Scouts and
guides it is NOT an issue in the UK where scouting began.  Religion has never
been a requirement but rather a preference for the beaver, cub, scout or ranger to
have a positive predisposition towards religion.  Proof or requirement for
membership has never been an issue.



Copyright The List Blog - Top 10, All Rights Reserved, Posted October 2, 2009