Thursday, January 14, 2021

WAR WATCH WEDNESDAYS January 13, 2021 “Exclusive: The Pentagon’s Massive Accounting Fraud Exposed.

 

#4 WAR WATCH WEDNESDAYS

January 13, 2021

“Exclusive: The Pentagon’s Massive Accounting Fraud Exposed.  How US military spending keeps rising even as the Pentagon flunks its audit.”  By Dave Lindorff.  The Nation (NOVEMBER 27, 2018).     https://www.thenation.com/article/archive/pentagon-audit-budget-fraud/

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On November 15, Ernst & Young and other private firms that were hired to audit the Pentagon announced that they could not complete the job. Congress had ordered an independent audit of the Department of Defense, the government’s largest discretionary cost center—the Pentagon receives 54 cents out of every dollar in federal appropriations—after the Pentagon failed for decades to audit itself. The firms concluded, however, that the DoD’s financial records were riddled with so many bookkeeping deficiencies, irregularities, and errors that a reliable audit was simply impossible.

Deputy Secretary of Defense Patrick Shanahan tried to put the best face on things, telling reporters, “We failed the audit, but we never expected to pass it.” Shanahan suggested that the DoD should get credit for attempting an audit, saying, “It was an audit on a $2.7 trillion organization, so the fact that we did the audit is substantial.” The truth, though, is that the DoD was dragged kicking and screaming to this audit by bipartisan frustration in Congress, and the result, had this been a major corporation, likely would have been a crashed stock.

As Republican Senator Charles Grassley of Iowa, a frequent critic of the DoD’s financial practices, said on the Senate floor in September 2017, the Pentagon’s long-standing failure to conduct a proper audit reflects “twenty-six years of hard-core foot-dragging” on the part of the DoD, where “internal resistance to auditing the books runs deep.” In 1990, Congress passed the Chief Financial Officers Act, which required all departments and agencies of the federal government to develop auditable accounting systems and submit to annual audits. Since then, every department and agency has come into compliance—except the Pentagon.

 

Now, a Nation investigation has uncovered an explanation for the Pentagon’s foot-dragging: For decades, the DoD’s leaders and accountants have been perpetrating a gigantic, unconstitutional accounting fraud, deliberately cooking the books to mislead the Congress and drive the DoD’s budgets ever higher, regardless of military necessity. DoD has literally been making up numbers in its annual financial reports to Congress—representing trillions of dollars’ worth of seemingly nonexistent transactions—knowing that Congress would rely on those misleading reports when deciding how much money to give the DoD the following year, according to government records and interviews with current and former DoD officials, congressional sources, and independent experts. . . .   MORE  https://www.thenation.com/article/archive/pentagon-audit-budget-fraud/

So here’s the situation: We have a Pentagon budget that a former DOD internal-audit supervisor, Jack Armstrong, bluntly labels “garbage.” We have a Congress unable to evaluate each new fiscal year’s proposed Pentagon budget because it cannot know how much money was actually spent during prior years. And we have a Department of Defense that gives only lip service to fixing any of this. Why should it? The status quo has been generating ever-higher DoD budgets for decades, not to mention bigger profits for Boeing, Lockheed, and other military contractors.

The losers in this situation are everyone else. The Pentagon’s accounting fraud diverts many billions of dollars that could be devoted to other national needs: health care, education, job creation, climate action, infrastructure modernization, and more. Indeed, the Pentagon’s accounting fraud amounts to theft on a grand scale—theft not only from America’s taxpayers, but also from the nation’s well-being and its future.

As President Dwight D. Eisenhower, who retired from the military as a five-star general after leading Allied forces to victory in World War II, said in a 1953 speech, “Every gun that is made, every warship launched, every rocket fired signifies, in the final sense, a theft from those who hunger and are not fed, those who are cold and are not clothed.” What would Eisenhower say today about a Pentagon that deliberately misleads the people’s representatives in Congress in order to grab more money for itself while hunger, want, climate breakdown, and other ills increasingly afflict the nation?

Dave LindorffNation contributor Dave Lindorff also writes for SalonLondon Review of Books, and Counterpunch. He is founder of ThisCantBeHappening.net. Author of four books, he was a 1990s Hong Kong/China correspondent for Business Week. https://www.thenation.com/article/archive/pentagon-audit-budget-fraud/

  Action:

Since the climate catastrophe will only increase the displaced and hungry, let us ask our representatives to convert the 
$billions lost or wasted on weapons to care for the millions now or nearly destitute.

Wednesday, January 13, 2021

VEGETARIAN/VEGAN ACTION NEWSLETTER, JANUARY 13, 2021

 

 

OMNI

VEGETARIAN/VEGAN ACTION NEWSLETTER,

JANUARY 13, 2021

Edited by Dick Bennett for a Culture of Peace, Justice, and Ecology

                                        http://omnicenter.org/donate/

Christian Vegetarian Association

HEALTH

Vegetarian Journal

Articles from Good Medicine:  Vegan for Love, Hearts, Native      Americans 

Articles in NADG: organic v. natural and soap v. virus.

Articles in Eco-Watch: Plant-based v. Vegan; Sustainable dietary guidelines; Protein sources for vegetarians and vegans; mustard greens; Keto-friendly fruits.

 

Reducing Mowed Lawns

 

Documentary Film on Mushrooms

 

UN Honors Health Workers

 

Rob Wallace.  Big Farms Make Big Flu.  2020

 

 

ANIMALS

Justice for Animals

Newkirk and Stone.  Animalkind: Remarkable Discoveries about Animals and the
          Remarkable Ways We Can Be Kind to Them. 
2020.

Safina’s New Book Becoming Wild.  2020.

Preston, “Animal Democracy.”

Survival of Species

Environmental Costs of Eating Meat

Articles from PETA

New Film v. Using Animals for Tests

Article: Notorious Experimenters with Animals

Against Animal Testing: 4 Articles in Good Medicine

Nibert, Meat Eating and Covid-19

Tyson’s Faux Shrimp

Eamon Whalen.  “Meatheads.” 

 

 

 

 

 

 

TEXTS

 



Christian Vegetarian Association (CVA), Google search 9-8-20

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HEALTH, NUTRITION

Vegetarian Journal : Science, Caring, and Vegan Living since 1982.

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Vegetarian Journal is a publication where health professionals evaluate current scientific literature and present it in practical fashion to readers .

 

””Articles from Good Medicine (Spring 2019)

“’Go Vegan for Someone You Love’ Urge Billboards in India.”  Good Medicine (Spring 2019). 

“Heather Shenkman, M. D.  “Healing Hearts with a Plant-Based Diet.”  Good Medicine (Spring 2019).

“Native Americans Are Healing Diabetes with Plant-Based Diet.”  Good Medicine (Spring 2019).

 

NADG (3-30-20) 3D provides a useful explanation of the distinction between organic and natural food.

Nearby is an excellent article (2D) on the molecular features of SOAP that make it so effective against viruses, better than sanitizing liquids.  “Trap and Kill, Soap’s Bubbly Attack on Dirt.” I spoke to a Wal-Green’s  pharmacist who agreed and said the W-G employees were washing their hands frequently—with soap.

 

ARTICLES FROM ECO-WATCH
VEGAN

What’s the Difference Between a Plant-Based and Vegan Diet?

 Healthline  Mar. 14, 2020 09:11AM ESTHEALTH + WELLNESS  By Lauren Panoff, MPH, RD

https://www.ecowatch.com/plant-based-vs-vegan-diet-2645486232.html

A growing number of people are choosing to reduce or eliminate animal products in their diet.

As a result, a larger selection of plant-based options have become noticeable at grocery stores, restaurants, public events, and fast food chains.

Some people choose to label themselves as "plant-based," while others use the term "vegan" to describe their lifestyle. As such, you may wonder what the differences between these two terms are.

This article examines the differences between the terms "plant-based" and "vegan" when it comes to diet and lifestyle.   https://www.ecowatch.com/plant-based-vs-vegan-diet-2645486232.html

Is the U.S. Ready for Sustainable Dietary Guidelines? New Research Makes a Compelling Case. EcoWatch (March 18, 2020).

“”13 Nearly Complete Protein Sources for Vegetarians and Vegans.”   .

Eco-Watch (5-3-20).

“Mustard Greens: Nutrition Facts and Health Benefits. “  By Kelli McGrane, MS, RD.   EcoWatch (3-28-20).    Healthline.  Mar. 26, 2020 12:24PM ESTFOOD
Mustard greens are peppery-tasting greens that come from the mustard plant (Brassica juncea L.).
Also known as brown mustard, vegetable mustard, Indian mustard, and Chinese mustard, mustard greens are members of the Brassica genus of vegetables. This genus also includes kale, collard greens, broccoli, and cauliflower.

There are several varieties, which are usually green and have a strong bitter, spicy flavor.

To make them more palatable, these leafy greens are typically enjoyed boiled, steamed, stir-fried, or even pickled.

This article provides a complete overview of mustard greens, including their nutrition, benefits, and uses.

Nutritional Profile

Mustard greens are one of the most nutritious foods you can eat, as they're low in calories yet rich in fiber and micronutrients.     MORE  https://www.ecowatch.com/mustard-greens-nutrition-2645577834.html?rebelltitem=9#rebelltitem9   

Summary

Mustard greens are low in calories yet high in fiber and many essential vitamins and minerals. In particular, they're an excellent source of vitamins C and K. Mustard greens are rich in important plant compounds and micronutrients, specifically vitamins A, C, and K. As a result, eating them may have benefits for eye and heart health, as well as anticancer and immune-boosting properties. How to Prepare and Eat Mustard Greens         MORE  https://www.ecowatch.com/mustard-greens-nutrition-2645577834.html?rebelltitem=9#rebelltitem9

 
EcoWatch (March 18, 2020).

HEALTH

“9 Nutritious Keto-Friendly Fruits”

 Healthline  Mar. 19, 2020 12:50PM ESTFOOD By Rachael Link, MS, RD
The ketogenic, or keto, diet is a very low carb, high fat eating plan on which carb intake is often restricted to less than 20–50 grams per day.
As such, many high carb foods are considered off-limits on this diet, including certain types of grains, starchy vegetables, legumes, and fruits.
However, some fruits are low in carbs and can fit into a well-rounded keto diet.
Some are also high in fiber, an indigestible type of carb that doesn't count toward your total daily carb count. That means they contain fewer net, or digestible, carbs. This is calculated by subtracting the grams of fiber from the total grams of carbs.

Here are 9 nutritious, tasty, and keto-riendly fruits.

1. Avocados

Though avocados are often referred to and used as a vegetable, they're biologically considered a fruit.

Thanks to their high content of heart-healthy fats, avocados make a great addition to a ketogenic diet.

They're also low in net carbs, with around 8.5 grams of carbs and nearly 7 grams of fiber in a 3.5-ounce (100-gram) serving (1Trusted Source).

Avocados provide an array of other important nutrients as well, including vitamin K, folate, vitamin C, and potassium (1Trusted Source).

Summary

A 3.5-ounce (100-gram) serving of avocado contains around 1.5 grams of net carbs. They're also high in vitamin K, folate, vitamin C, and potassium.

2. Watermelon  MORE

https://www.ecowatch.com/keto-friendly-fruit-2645535099.html?utm_source=EcoWatch+List&utm_campaign=1b26f66bb0-EMAIL_CAMPAIGN_COPY_01&utm_medium=email&utm_term=0_49c7d43dc9-1b26f66bb0-85387053

Tom Philpott.  “Plan Bee: It’s Time for the Lawn to Start Kicking Grass.”  Mother Jones (May-June 2020) 68.  The disastrous decline of bees.   Since people continue to neatly mow their lawns, despite the destructiveness of the practice (besides harming bees, the mower’s CO2), the article offers a compromise: mowed lawns with flowers.  Philpott has been writing for bees for a decade or more.  [But the natural yard should be the goal—kicking the mower and enabling maximum diversity of plants and creatures--, and Fayetteville rewards the practice with its Naturalistic Yard recognition.  Contact Peter Nierengarten.]   Dick

Wendy Bechtold.  “Much Ado About Mushrooms.”  Sierra  (May June 2020).
Review of documentary film Fantastic Fungi: The Magic Beneath Us by Louie Schwartzberg about the renowned mycologist Paul Stamets and the “grand molecular decomposers of nature.”

TOP STORY UN WIRE 4-8-20

 

UN honors health workers as WHO warns of nurse shortage

United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres expressed his gratitude to front-line health workers for their courageous efforts to fight the coronavirus pandemic in an address marking World Health Day on Tuesday. World Health Organization Director-General Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus also marked the day by recognizing the sacrifices made by nurses and midwives during this crisis, while noting that the world faces a shortage of trained nurses.

 Full Story: Devex (free registration) (4/7),  Manila Bulletin (Philippines) (4/7),  Hindustan Times (India) (4/7) 

And we at OMNI honor all front-line workers; and we recognize how many kinds of workers have continued to serve us at the front—at grocery stores, food banks, the Post Office and all other federal and state agencies, police, courts, gas stations, restaurants…..

 

Rob Wallace.  Big Farms Make Big Flu. 2020.  Advertised in Monthly Review.

 

FACTORY FARMS
The numbers aren’t pretty.

Ronnie Cummins, Organic Consumers Association campaigns@organicconsumers.org via us.e-activist.com 

Jun 30, 2020, 2:30 PM (19 hours ago)

https://mail.google.com/mail/u/0/images/cleardot.gif

https://mail.google.com/mail/u/0/images/cleardot.gif

to me

https://mail.google.com/mail/u/0/images/cleardot.gif

Dear Dick,

The folks at the Food & Environment Network (FERN) have taken on the grim task of monitoring the COIVD-19 situation in industrial slaughterhouses.

The numbers aren’t pretty. 

As of June 29, FERN reports that at least 36,561 meatpacking, food processing and farmworkers have tested positive for Covid-19—and at least 116 workers of those have died.

Meanwhile four of the “Big Meat” companies responsible for these numbers—Tyson, JBS, Cargill and Smithfield—are being investigated for using the pandemic to needlessly endanger workers, and to deceive consumers about meat shortages so they could jack up prices, all while exporting massive amounts of meat to China.

Never have we needed to shut down factory farms more than now.

And never has the opportunity been more within our reach—if we can marshal the resources to get the job done.

Our deadline to meet our 2nd-quarter budget is midnight tonight. And we are still far short of our goal. Can you help by making a donation today?

DONATE

 

 

We need to transition exploited factory farm workers to safer, better paying jobs, either in organic regenerative meat production or some other green industry.

But that’s just one of many reasons to end factory farming.

Industrial factory farms produce pesticide- and drug-contaminated meat. 

Industrial factory farms are leading polluters of water and air.

Industrial factory farms are notorious for their cruel treatment of animals.

And let’s not forget this: Without factory farms, Monsanto would have a hard time pushing farmers to grow millions of acres of pesticide-saturated GMO grains for animal feed.

Now, more than ever, it’s time to demand an organic regenerative food and farming system. 

Now, more than ever, we need a food system that improves public health, ensures worker rights, protects family farmers, ends animal abuse and protects the environment, including climate stability.

Safely ensconced in their high-rise executive offices, “Big Meat” corporation executives care nothing about the communities they exploit, and from which they extract wealth.

We can do better. And there’s no time like the present.

Please make a donation today if you are able. You can donate online, by mail or by phone, details here.

DONATE

Thank you. Be safe. Be healthy.

 

P.S. Please help us raise $100,000 by midnight June 30 to avoid a 2nd-quarter shortfall. You can donate online, or by phone or mail—click here for details.

 

 

Organic Consumers Association is a tax-exempt, non-profit organization, under the section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code. All charitable donations are deductible to the full extent allowed by law.

 

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ANIMALS

Animalkind: Remarkable Discoveries about Animals and the Remarkable Ways We Can Be Kind to Them by Ingrid Newkirk and Gene Stone.   2020.   See Winter 2020 PETA GLOBAL.LOOK

 

The founder and president of PETA, Ingrid Newkirk, and bestselling author Gene Stone explore the wonders of animal life and offer tools for living more kindly toward them.

In the last few decades, a wealth of new information has emerged about who animals are—intelligent, aware, and empathetic. Studies show that animals are astounding beings with intelligence, emotions, intricate communications networks, and myriad abilities. In Animalkind, Ingrid Newkirk and Gene Stone present these findings in a concise and awe-inspiring way, detailing a range of surprising discoveries: that geese fall in love and stay with a partner for life, that fish “sing” underwater, and that elephants use their trunks to send subsonic signals, alerting other herds to danger miles away.

Newkirk and Stone pair their tour of the astounding lives of animals with a guide to the exciting new tools that allow humans to avoid using or abusing animals as we once did. They show readers what they can do in their everyday lives to ensure that the animal world is protected from needless harm. Whether it’s medicine, product testing, entertainment, clothing, or food, there are now better options to all the uses animals once served in human life. We can substitute warmer, lighter faux fleece for wool, choose vegan versions of everything from shrimp to sausage and milk to marshmallows, reap the benefits of medical research that no longer requires monkeys to be caged in laboratories, and scrap captive orca exhibits and elephant rides for virtual reality and animatronics.

Animalkind is a fascinating study of why our fellow living beings deserve our respect, and moreover, the steps every reader can take to put this new understanding into action.

 

Review of Safina’s new book Becoming Wild

Paul Rauber.  “Critter Culture: How Animals Pass Knowledge Through Generations.”  Sierra (May-June 2020).  Rev. of Carl Safina’s Becoming Wild: How Animal Cultures Raise Families, Create Beauty, and Achieve Peace.  Rauber focuses on sperm whales, scarlet macaws, and chimpanzees.

 

 

Elizabeth Preston (NYT).  “Animal Democracy: Humans Aren’t the Only Species That Votes.”  NADG (3-9-20).  Special sections on Honeybees (see Thomas Seeley, Honeybee Democracy, 2010), African Wild Dogs, Baboons, Rock Ants.

 

Survival of Species
“Survival of humans. “ Pg 3H in NADG (4-12-20) (from Charles Sisco)
Recent letters by Steve Foster, Greg Stanford and Judy Kittler address a topic that will engage us all in the future. How do we make sense of a world we’ve never inhabited before? Societies generate a number of conceptual universes to choose from, whose primary purpose is to sustain group survival by offering rewards or punishments for behavior leading to that end. But do any of those that exist today assure group survival on a planet experiencing unchecked global warming, ecological implosion and species extinction? We’ve been warned! Nearly 60 years ago, Rachel Carson’s Silent Spring raised the alarm that human activity is throwing the delicate natural order out of balance. Twenty-six years ago Laurie Garrett documented one such result in The Coming Plague: Newly Emerging Diseases in a World Out of Balance. Considering today’s often-employed conceptual universes, what help in addressing contemporary issues do we get from those conceived around the world millennia ago that express being in a spiritual idiom? What help from political philosophies conceived when the world’s population was 1 billion, rather than today’s approaching 8 billion? Or
[capitalism] economic philosophies urging all to commodify the planet and its resources even further for personal aggrandizement? A common feature of previous conceptual universes is that they address a specific group and seek to assure its existence irrespective of—if not in spite of—“others.” If humankind is to survive into the future, I’d guess the notion of “other” (human, animal or plant) will have to go.

“One Small Step for Cow. . .” (Los Angeles Times).   NADG (1-10-20).  The ”tremendous environmental costs to eating cows” [methane etc.] led to plant-based Impossible Foods receiving one of the UN Global Climate Action Awards in 2019.

PETA IS VEGAN

New Film:  Test Subjects. PETA Global  (Winter 2020).
How Three PETA Scientists Are changing the Face of Scientific Research, by their opposition to cruelty to animals in testing.  Visit PETA.org/TestSubjects to watch the film.

“Stop These Men! Notorious Experimenters Hold Animals at Knifepoint.”  PETA Global (Winter 2020).  Shreesh Mysore and Joshua Gordon by making helpless animals undergo terrifying experiments.  Take action: go to PETA.org/JHUOwls

“Forgotten Animals.”  Good Medicine (Spring 2019).  Four articles against cruel animal testing.  GM is published by the Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine.  See “Physicians Committee Is Top 10 Health Influencer in China.”

(Spring 2019).

Meat eating at center of covid-19 pandemic (from David)

Now Is the Time to End the Oppression of Nonhuman Animals by David Nibert
At this tragic moment in history, circumstances are crying out for policies and legislation that will rapidly promote the development of a global, plant-based food system.

 

Nathan Owens.  “Tyson invests in Faux Shrimp.”   NADG (9-6-19).  Tyson is making waves with its latest investment in plant-based foods.”

Claire Williams.  “Groups Doubt Tyson’s No-Abuse Data.”  NADG (3-19-16). 

 

Eamon Whalen.  “Meatheads.”  The Nation (June 29/July 6, 2020), 8pp. 

   Beef for the right wing.   For virility and “’a more pure-blooded race’” we need to eat more meat.

 

CLIMATE

We are the Weather

·         Imprint: Hamish Hamilton

·         Published: 10/10/2019

·         ISBN: 9780241363331

·         Length: 288  Pages

We are the Weather:  Saving the Planet Begins at Breakfast, 2019.

Jonathan Safran Foer   Hardback  Paperback    Ebook   Audio Download

Y 'A warning: this is a life-changing book and will alter your relationship to food forever' - Alex Preston, Observer

'Since I finished the book I have been following his advice. I hope others will too. The future of the planet is in our hands - or rather, it's on our plates' - James Marriott, The Times

From the bestselling author of Eating Animals and Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close - a brilliant, fresh take on climate change and what we can do about it

Climate crisis is the single biggest threat to human survival. And it is happening right now. We all understand that time is running out - but do we truly believe it? And, caught between the seemingly unimaginable and the apparently unthinkable, how can we take the first step towards action, to arrest our race to extinction?

We can begin with our knife and fork. The link between farming animals and the climate crisis is barely discussed, because giving up our meat-based diets feels like an impossible ask. But we don't have to go cold turkey. Cutting out animal products for just part of the day is enough to change the world.

The task of saving the planet will involve a great reckoning with ourselves - with our all-too-human reluctance to sacrifice immediate comfort for the sake of the future. But we have done it before and we can do it again. Collective action is the way to save our home and way of life. And it all starts with what we eat, and don't eat, for breakfast.

With his distinctive wit, insight and humanity, Jonathan Safran Foer presents the essential debate of our time as no one else could, bringing it to vivid and urgent life and offering us all a much-needed way out.



Meat Is Murder. But You Know That Already. - The New York ...

www.nytimes.com › 2019/09/17 › books › review › we-a...

Sep 17, 2019 - In his new essay collection, “We Are the Weather,” Jonathan Safran Foer turns his attention to the climate crisis. Mark Bittman weighs in.

 

Slashing U.S. Meat Consumption by Half Could Cut Diet-Related Greenhouse Gas Emissions by 35%, Study Finds.”   EcoWatch (May 2, 2020). 

 

TABLE OF CONTENTS MARCH 2020

https://jamesrichardbennett.blogspot.com/2020/03/omni-vegetarianveganaction-newsletter.html

(POTLUCK cancelled after March because of Covid-19.)

NUTRITION, HEALTH

NAVS Summerfest

From Organic Consumers Association

AR PBS Veg Programs

Ban Factory Farms

“Right to Harm” documentary (fecal dust)

“Taking Beef Out of Burgers”

Plant-based Foods Increasing

PETA’s Veg. Recipes

 

PROTECTION OF ANIMALS

President of PETA’s New Book: Animalkind

“End Speciesism. Go Vegan”

Pigs Are Individuals Too

Animal Leather Down, Vegan Up

“Chicken Slaughter Speed-Up”

 

CLIMATE

Cut Back on Meat

Organic Consumers

Novels about Climate Catastrophe: Jonathan Foer

Big Tech Can Save Us?

February 2020 Vegetarian Potluck and Newsletter

 

 

END JANUARY 2021 VEGETARIAN ACTION

Dick's Wars and Warming KPSQ Radio Editorials (#1-48)

Dick's Wars and Warming KPSQ Radio Editorials (#1-48)