Rise of the Corporate Armies

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posted on Jan, 16 2008 @ 10:50 AM
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The rise of corporate armies in America weakens our country's armed forces, delegitimizes our interests abroad, and gives military power to entities whose loyalty is bought only for profit. The private military corporation, or PMC for short, is nothing more than a large-scale mercenary band.

In ages past, the use of the use of mercenaries would be unthinkable by any but the most inept and unread of commanders. The growth and encouragement of these brigands over the course of the last decade is at once a testament to, and cause for, the rapid decline of America's standing in the face of the world. One need only read one of the most basic texts of military leadership to see what is otherwise considered common sense among competent military leaders:


"Mercenaries and auxiliaries are useless and dangerous; and if one holds his state based on these arms, he will stand neither firm nor safe; for they are disunited, ambitious and without discipline, unfaithful, valiant before friends, cowardly before enemies; they have neither the fear of God nor fidelity to men, and destruction is deferred only so long as the attack is; for in peace one is robbed by them, and in war by the enemy. The fact is, they have no other attraction or reason for keeping the field than a trifle of stipend, which is not sufficient to make them willing to die for you."
SOURCE: The Prince, Ch 12, by Nicolò Machiavelli, 1505.

Throughout history, mercenaries have been viewed with contempt. Their loyalty is bought, and for a higher price than those whom serve out of a sense of duty and patriotism. Their actions in the field are not tempered by a moral sense of right and wrong, the ethical system of a national army, or the discipline of a rigid chain of command. They are motivated only by profit, enough so to think nothing of killing for their daily bread. It should then be no surprise when these hired guns commit crimes upon both the countries they profess to serve, and the countries upon which they make warfare, turning all against their employer in the process.

It is for this reason, and many others, that mercenaries are afforded no quarter in Protocol I, Article 47 of the Geneva Conventions.

In 1996, Major Thomas J. Milton of the Foreign Area Officer Association had the following to say about the future of PMCs.



There are three major differences between these new corporate armies and mercenaries of old. First, they are business ventures foremost, not a venture for individual profit or excitement. Second, these corporations, at least those based in western states, do not take contracts that are in direct opposition to their country's national interest. Third, again for those based in western countries, they maintain a high level of professionalism and profess to adhere to internationally accepted norms of operations.
SOURCE: The New Mercenaries - Corporate Armies For Hire (1997)

Milton's supposition that "the mercenaries of old" were neither business ventures nor anything other than individuals out for glory, ignores every major historical application of their use. Indeed, mercenaries had the most destructive effect upon their employers when they were large, organized business ventures. Machiavelli attributed the fall of Italy in The Italian War (1494-1498) to overuse of mercenary forces, Carthage was held for ransom by the very mercenaries that once defended it in the Mercenary War (240BC), and in various African wars during the 1970's, nations that weren't bankrupted by the mercenaries were despoiled by them.

Major Milton's assertion that PMCs do not take contracts that are in direct opposition to their country's national interest also falls short of reality. What determines a PMCs host country? The local branch office? The headquarters? The parent company? And what of subsidiaries? One such example is the
Vinnell Corporation
(a subsidiary of Northrop Grumman), whom have already created sister company, the Riyadh-based Vinnell Arabian, the contract for which is financed by the Saudi government, and tasked with protecting its Royal Family and their interests. The very relationship between the United States and Saudia Arabia is already deeply troubled, and the gap between our relative national interests widens with each passing year. Should the U.S. ever enter conflict with Saudi Arabia, whose intersts will Vinnell Arabian serve?

Major Milton's shows his naivety towards PMCs in expectation that they would not behave in anything other than a professional and internationally acceptable manner. Certainly this is not the case with Dyncorp, a corporate army of mercenaries whom enjoy $2.8 billion in U.S. defense contracts annually, despite numerous allegations of drug and child sex-slave trafficking.



...employees and supervisors from DynCorp were engaging in perverse, illegal and inhumane behavior [and] were purchasing illegal weapons, women, forged passports and [participating in] other immoral acts."
SOURCE: Johnston v Dyncorp (2001)

The above is in addition to such "minor" details as charging the U.S. government for unnecessary repairs, padding their hours, and severe collateral impact to the property and lives of innocents surrounding their operations. In 2002 they were charged in U.S. Courts for terrorism.

Most damning of all for Major Milton's argument is the list of PMCs he lists as fine examples of how these modern mercenaries are somehow ethically superior to their older counterparts: Vinnell Corporation, Brown and Root, MPRI, Sandline Ltd., Executive Outcomes. He even goes so far to say:



These companies have become an integral part of DoD plans and operations. The professionalism and expertise within these corporations are without reproach.
SOURCE: The New Mercenaries - Corporate Armies For Hire (1997)

Brown and Root may be more recognizable by their new name, KBR, the subsidiary of Halliburton, under dozens of ongoing investigations for bribery, fraud, kickbacks, and trading with the enemy. Their response to these allegations was the flee the scene of the crime and move their Headquarters to Dubai.

MPRI formerly Military Professional Resources Inc, has been at the center of a scandal involving the Macedonian Armed Forces (ARM) in Kosovo, and committed the "bloodiest episode of ethnic cleansing in Europe since World War II" during Operation Storm in Croatia. They were at the center of training and equipping the KLA (Kosovo Liberation Army), designated as a terrorist organization by the State Department, and suspected by the DEA of being a high-grade Afghan smuggling operation into North America and Western Europe.

Sandline Ltd, now Sandline International, is best known for the Sandline Affair, a blood-soaked mineral rights scandal that changed the history of Papua New Guinea forever, and continues to plague it to this day. They also helped to continue the civil war in Sierra Leone, instigated by rival mining companies over diamonds. In both affairs, they were closely linked with Executive Outcomes.

Executive Outcomes (and Strategic Resource Corporation) is a common link between all of these corporations, but folded in 1998, and became unofficially absorbed by Sandline during the Plaza 101 Diamond Dogs scandal.

With such a large and diverse history of crimes against humanity, it should have come as no surprise when Blackwater came under investigation by the FBI for the murder of eight unarmed civilians, or when U.S. Investigations Services (USIS) commits human rights abuses that exacerbate civil war in Iraq.

Terrorism, training terrorists, murder, underage sex slave markets, illegal narcotics running, blood-soaked diamonds, fraud, forgery, illegal weapons trade, and human rights abuses, and ethnic cleansing; are these the "integral part of DoD plans and operations", or "the professionalism and expertise without reproach"? The former is unthinkable, and the latter is lack of thought. Major Milton's statements either condemn the Pentagon as being the most sick and depraved force in Earth's history, or are complete and total fabrication of a myth that the corporate army is anything other than an even less moral and ethical evolution of the mercenaries of old.




posted on Jan, 16 2008 @ 12:19 PM
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reply to post by thelibra
 

Amazing treatise!


It took me some time to explore the links, and I have more still to do.

I think you've well established the fact that corporate armies exist and they pose a threat. Of course they should be stomped out -- it is arguably just a type of gangsterism.

I think it is appropriate to speculate here what kind of operatives the major corporations employ, and how they make people suffer, wreck their lives -- occasionally kill. There has to be a market to support this, hence the rise of PMCs. What better way can a Corporation lock down its total domination of a market space?

I want to point out: some people will probably say that, at least in the USA, this type of stuff is protected by the second amendment to the US constitution. A pretty lame argument IMO, but I think it might be an effective argument (for some) none-the-less.



posted on Jan, 16 2008 @ 12:33 PM
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TREASON!!!
They should all hang!

Brilliant Thread TheLibra! The only way I see it is that we are owned by the corporations via their ownership of our politicians, our elections and legislation. Since they have already co-opted the entire government, a military would follow logically as there is no governmental entity on the planet devoid a military to protect their interests.

I've said it before and I'll repeat it now. Our freedom is a charade! The only way we will ever regain our liberty and our freedom is when each and every one of these scum sucking pigs is dangling by their necks at the end of a rope!



posted on Jan, 16 2008 @ 02:36 PM
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Originally posted by kozmo
The only way I see it is that we are owned by the corporations via their ownership of our politicians, our elections and legislation.

Pretty hopeless prognosis, However, I can't disagree.

If I understand what your are saying, Kozmo, the USA Military is actually the army of Exxon, Lockheed, Microsoft, and Pharmaceutical companies. To the extent that these corporate entities can't 100% control our military, they look for alternatives in PMCs to complete the job -- pretty sad state of affairs.

So -- this thread is really about corruption of our government and our lack of human will to challenge this. The Libra states this in the OP closing paragraph (more eloquently than I can.)



posted on Jan, 17 2008 @ 12:30 PM
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Critical_Mass sent me this in U2U, and with their permission, I'm responding to it in-thread, because I feel like this is more like a group collaborative effort, rather than one individual answer.



I frequently see these types of thread, reporting the wrongdoing, and the results of said wrongdoing, but I rarely hear any discussion regarding what people would do about it to reverse, or stop it when push came to shove. Push is indeed starting to come to shove with what I am seeing.

I figure with the detailed info you provided and providing your stance is viewing the situation as a negative (well, duh), that you have somehere in your mind, a thought on what would be required to counter it.

How do we stop corporations from shaping our lives into slavery?

Would it be political, financial, by force? Also how?

I often think about scenarios regarding what it would entail to stop corporations from what they are currently doing.

I am interested in hearing your take.



I wish I had a silver bullet for this situation, but in truth, this isn't just one big huge problem, it is a collection of many, many smaller problems that collectively create a terrible situation. As best I can tell, the root causes for the situation as a whole are:


  • No military experience required to be Commander in Chief:

    There was a time when the only way one could be elected President was to be well-versed in warfare, history, and usually have some personal experience as a soldier. Those men would have already read the likes of Sun Tzu, Machiavelli, Musashi, Tsunetomo, and any other book of military strategy they could get their hands on. This is because we had enemies everywhere, on every side, and within. The literal survival of our nation depended upon having a competent Commander in Chief of the Armed Forces, because to have otherwise would mean we would be overrun by those more numerous and better armed than ourselves.

    Fast forward to present day. Our current Commander in Chief is an English Major that cannot string together a coherent sentence, who shuns history lessons and the advice of those educated in history, has never seen a day of combat in his entire life, and is so incredibly unread that the one book he was known to read during his Presidency (Alistair Horne’s “A Savage War of Peace”) made national headlines, and he took away from it the exact wrong message from what the author was intending. This is the man who was elected in lieu of a Vietnam veteran who'd been awarded three purple hearts, along with the bronze and silver stars.

    The end result is that we waged an illegal war against a country that never attacked us, while ignoring the one that did, and waged that war in such a way that was so hideously incometant that it has bankrupted the nation, destroyed our relations in the face of the rest of the world, and mired us for potentially decades in a country that does not want us there, but can no longer survive without us.

    I only see two possible solutions to this problem: voters either need to take more responsibility for ensuring the candidates are qualified to lead our armed forces, or the Constitution needs to be ammended so that the position of Commander in Chief is a seperate position from the PoTUS, that requires a seperate election. Neither seems likely. Joe Average is far too stupid and apathetic to vote, much less actually examine a Presidential Resume before voting. And getting a Constitutional Amendment that changes the highest position in the land would face too strong an opposition from the Executive Branch.


  • Apathy About the Situation:

    Let's be honest with ourselves for a moment. This is a forum with over 100,000 members and something like 10mil hits a month, each of which are basically considered at least one step above Joe Average for realizing there is something out there beyond Brittany Spears, American Idol, and Fox News. It is probably fair to assume that the majority of the members of the largest Conspiracy Forum on the net are less than trusting of large corporations, and more than a little concerned about their civil liberties.

    Yet, a thread entitled "Rise of the Corporate Armies" generates replies from only 3 people, and only 150 views. Now I'm not going to bitch about my thread not getting read enough, that's neither here, nor there. What I intend to illustrate with these statistics is the fact that no one cares, even amongst a group that one would naturally think would care more than anything else.

    Now consider Joe Average, and his required participation to actually do anything about this, be it working through the system, or around the system, or replacing the system. I would expect them to care far less than ATS's general membership. Very little will be done by anyone until it affects them personally. Regardless of the fact that, by the time it affects them personally, it will be because a corporation has been leased the Warlording Rights to their neighborhood. Perhaps even then, no one will act until the day they are prevented from getting to the drive-through to McDonald's because a PMC has blown it up. That would probably get their attention.


  • Growth in outsourcing of the most important Government job of all:

    I realize few people here are a fan of government, but I stand by my conviction that government is the inevitable result of more than two people living together. The ultimate responsibility of government is to keep people from outside from killing those inside, and keeping those inside from killing each other. Any time you have a group of people whose job it is to ensure that, then you have a government. Everything else is just policy and resource management.

    The legitimacy of any government is based, first and foremost, upon its ability to protect the people it serves. Make no mistake; this force is the supreme authority from which all governmental power derives. If it cannot perform even this most critical function, it cannot hope to last much beyond the next violent conflict. If it can adequately perform this function, people will even go so far as to accept a dictatorship, provided the dictatorship meets their need to not be killed by neighbors or foreigners, and doesn't try to kill them as well.

    Our government is rapidly outsourcing the duty of domestic peace-keeping and foreign operations of war to mercenaries (ie. corporations). As the police and military are gradually replaced by corporate entities, so will the force of the governmental power be shifted to the corporations. The legitimate authority to govern will no longer be held by the government, but rather private contractors.

    There will absolutely be a point of no return. I cannot stress this enough.

    Let us imagine that Corporation X has broken the law. A warrant is issued for the arrest of those in charge of Corporation X. CX decides not to go peacefully. The police must now use force to remove CX and bring them to justice, and that justice (such as prison) is enforced by force as well. People obey the law, not because it is law, but because the ultimate result of refusing to do so is to have violent government force brought against you.

    Now, let us re-examine the situation. Corporation X has broken the law. Unfortunately, the state has contracted the police force to Corporation X. This leaves the armed forces, whom are now contracted to Corporation Y, who is in close partnership with Corporation X, and Corporation Z, whom happen to be the corporation for which the electronic infrastructure has been outsourced.

    What, ultimately, can the government now do to Corporation X for breaking the law? Nothing. Perhaps bring in a foreign army to fight Americans on American soil? At this point, the U.S. Government will have completely lost any legitimacy or ability to govern the people.

    Now take it a step further. The corporations have decided to overthrow the government. They refuse to pay taxes of any sort, and their private corporate armies have become better funded, better armed and armored, and are more numerous and maneuverable than the U.S. Army. Who technically has achieved legitimate rule over America at this point? The winner.

    Social Security, Health Care, Welfare, Interest Rates, Infrastructure... NONE of these even remotely approaches the importance that force has in determining right to rule, and if there is any doubt of this, I invite anyone to read any history book ever written. The most important job of our government is being outsourced at the eventual cost of the government itself. And while many may cheer this state of affairs on, I submit to the reader that what we have now is far less scary than the ruthlessness of a Plutocracy.



  • posted on Jan, 17 2008 @ 01:23 PM
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    Thanks for this thelibra.

    The Corpratacracy is in control.

    It's a brave new world, welcome to the monkey house!

    I too am astonished in what little attention this thread has generated.
    Strange!!



    posted on Jan, 17 2008 @ 02:26 PM
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    With regard to Apathy, I totally agree. Apathy is probably one of the biggest issues that I see. Apathy is what allowed this all to get this far. Everyone is so self-absorbed and self-important.

    I try to talk to people about these situations, and outline to them what the future holds, yet they look at me like I'm some lunatic. Yet, the same people refuse to do any of the research to form their own opinions.
    They have no opinion?

    "No, that would never happen here" is a frequent response I get.
    Another winner is "oh politics are boring".
    WHAT?


    It paints a very scary picture, as these are the first people that are going to be completely blindsided by all of this.

    I sometimes just wonder what it is that keeps a majority of people so ignorant of the problems we face. And what prevents people who finally do wake up and wise up from taking some course of action. Is it fear tactics? Is it that they are already captives of the same corporations?
    Are they too preoccupied with fondling their cellphones and gadgets?

    We really need to do something quick before we become another Iraq, or Afghanistan. It is indeed not something "that will never happen". It is very possible and becomes moreso each day.

    I hope I'm wrong, and that it never happens, but at this point I'm pretty convinced we are already well on our way. It might not even be American Corporations that do it either. Look at all of the foreign investment going on right now. And look at the blatant disregard of any of our important domestic issues on the part of our government.

    Thank you for the writeup Libra.
    Very well researched, and it falls right along the lines of what I am starting to already see.

    I hope to see some more participation.



    [edit on 17-1-2008 by Critical_Mass]



    posted on Jan, 17 2008 @ 02:50 PM
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    I believe that apathy plays a significant role. As I have stated in other threads... we live in a society that begins with "As long as my pizza is delivered on time and is still hot" and ends with "And my fridge is stocked with beer and it is cold - then everything is good in the world." we cannot/will not ever see true liberty and freedom. There is a sense of self-centered arrogance that leads Americans to believe that these things happen to other people but not to themselves.

    That reminds me of a bit of prose I once read which was presented by Pastor Martin Niemoller while speaking at Columbia Theological Seminary in Decatur, GA in 1959 or 1960. He stated in his speech the following:

    "In Germany they first came for the Communists,
    and I didn't speak up because I wasn't a Communist.

    Then they came for the Jews,
    and I didn't speak up because I wasn't a Jew.

    Then they came for the trade unionists,
    and I didn't speak up because I wasn't a trade unionist.

    Then they came for the Catholics,
    and I didn't speak up because I was a Protestant.

    Then they came for me —
    and by that time no one was left to speak up."

    This is perhaps the most fitting piece of history that prognosticates our current state of affairs! After all, history is doomed to repeat itself when a civilization fails to learn from it's past. I think we can all agree that public education has served to ensure that "learning" and "History" are subjective government objectives.

    That being said, something that I don't feel has been adequately addressed is fear. Apathy certainly plays it's part. But I also believe that fear also plays a part - perhaps a bigger part. And that bigger part may be predicated upon what WE HAVE LEARNED FROM HISTORY... Dissenters and their families are serially eliminated!

    Let me give you an example. For awhile I worked for a national talk show host as his Director of Affiliate Sales. I admired this individual but did not agree with him on many political issues. As you know, I am a vocal member of this community and do not hesitate to share my views and opinions. Interstingly enough, this celebrity has body guards (Some ex-government employees) and has received protection from Secret Service (I kid you not!) in the past. I was VERY successful in my job for him and increased his sales by over 500% every year. About 8 months after joining these forums and becoming very politically active I was fired inexplicably. I was offered severence to sign an agreement to shut up and go away - which I did as I have a family to care for. It became apparent to me at some point later that I was "Listed" and he was advised to separate me from his employ by his handlers.

    The point I am trying to make is that I think a growing number of people are aware of what is happening but they do not want to risk throwing what little they have left away. In other words, push hasn't necessarily come to shove - as of yet. At least not for the majority which would be required to mount any type of offensive - either physical, financial or otherwise. I think many people realize that fighting alone will bear consequences that they are not prepared to bring upon their families. I know - I've been there. So fear, I think, is the underlying obstacle. Organization and strength in numbers will help people to overcome this fear and join the cuase.




    Edited: Spelling/grammar

    [edit on 17-1-2008 by kozmo]



    posted on Jan, 17 2008 @ 03:45 PM
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    reply to post by thelibra
     


    The root of this, of all of this, is corporate personhood. And this phenomenon, this terminology, first came to being here in the United States. From the Bill of Rights to every Civil Rights Act that has ever been passed in this country, corporations have fought to have those very same laws that apply to natural persons, i.e., human beings, to also apply to them, i.e., fictional persons, artificial persons, or juristic persons. A corporation is an individual just like you and me, but it has the ability to merge with one another corporation, survive even though the head has been cut off, to dismember itself into smaller units, to be transnational, it cannot go to jail for crimes committed. It is a superperson, and it is just as powerful as any superhero in the Marvel or DC comics universe; just as threatening as the character Galactus in the Silver Surfer series. Sounds funny? Well, the joke is on humanity because even those these superpersons are fictional, their actions or inaction has very real consequences for not only us natural persons, but also for the Earth as well. In other words, just like in the comic books.

    The deregulation of corporations in the US during the 80s under the Reagan Administration was only the result of corporations rising to the level of human beings as far as the law is concerned. Once corporations, fictional persons, were accorded the same rights and legal status of human beings, it was only a matter of time before we ended up in the situation that we have today. And this exact same philosophy and legal maneuvering is what has been exported to the rest of the world. People were on to this back in the 70s and it was expressed in the movie Network in 1976. Stranger than fiction is one thing corporate personhood entirely is NOT. It has been a reality since at least the US Constitution and Bill of Rights.


    Most people believe that the Constitution - specifically, the Bill of Rights - guarantees our rights to freedom of speech, religion, and press, to peaceably assemble, and so forth. People of all political stripes say this. But the truth is, it does no such thing. Almost all of our constitutional protections are expressed as the absence of a negative rather than the presence of a positive. So the First Amendment, for example, does not say, "All citizens are guaranteed the right to free speech"; it only says, "Congress shall make no law . . . abridging the freedom of speech . . ." The First Amendment just restricts the government from specific encroachments; it doesn't guarantee anything. This was not a concern for the people because they had strong bills of rights in their state constitutions, and at that time, the states had more power than the federal government. The US Constitution allowed slavery throughout the US, for example, but it was each state's constitution that created free or slave states. Over time, however, the states have lost power to the federal government. The federal laws are now usually ruled to supercede the states' laws. The federal Bill of Rights is where we look to protect our freedoms. The lack of positive protection of these rights weakens them greatly.

    If those rights were actually guaranteed in the Constitution, people could, for example, take the Bill of Rights into the workplace, but we can't. Anyone who thinks workers have free speech while they're on corporate property should ask the workers or talk to a union organizer. Because corporations are property, and because the Constitution protects property rights above all, most people have to abandon the Bill of Rights in order to make a living. The way different groups of people - like African Americans and women - have, one by one, acquired rights and become persons under the law is by getting protection from abuse by the government, usually through amendments to the Constitution - not a guarantee.


    And to be more direct in answering the question of what should we do about corporate mercenaries? Well, the first thing to do is to realize that we are dealing with corporations. Failing that, nothing can be done about corporate mercenaries, never mind corporations. Here is one possible answer to the question:


    These systems of oppression weren't established overnight; they were gradually and sometimes surreptitiously introduced and refined in ways that made them acceptable. At the time of the Constitution, corporations were widely reviled, but a century later they were a commonplace business institution, and a century after that they've become our invisible government. They accomplished this over decades, changing the law incrementally when most people weren't looking.

    Resistance to these oppressions evolved in a similar way. Those who wished to end slavery, for example, worked for many years collecting information, refining their analysis, and debating among themselves. They came to understand the issue as one of human rights and that the whole institution of slavery was fundamentally wrong. They didn't come up with a Slavery Regulatory Agency or voluntary codes of conduct for slave owners. They called themselves Abolitionists - the whole thing had to go.

    We look at corporate personhood the same way. We see that corporate personhood was wrongly given - not by We the People, but by nine Supreme Court judges. We further see that corporate personhood is destructive, because it was the pivotal achievement that allowed an artificial entity to obtain the rights of people, thus relegating us to subhuman status. And finally, because of the way corporate personhood has enabled corporations to govern us, we must eradicate it.

    Slavery is the legal fiction that a person is property. Corporate personhood is the legal fiction that property is a person. Like abolishing slavery, the work of eradicating corporate personhood takes us to the deepest questions of what it means to be human. And if we are to live in a democracy, what does it mean to be sovereign? The hardest part of eliminating corporate personhood is believing that We the People have the sovereign right to do this. It comes down to us being clear about who's in charge.

    Abolish Corporate Personhood

    Additional Source:Wiki-Corp.Pers



    posted on Jan, 17 2008 @ 04:45 PM
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    The bigger picture, in regards to this thread, consists of the makeup of the US economy as well as the profile of Western Consumerism. This philosophy has evolved over the past 200 some years, from the "pursuit of happiness" clause as well as the mixture of what may be termed as a "cowboy" mindset. This is a generalization of the argument...but it makes for a good sound bite.

    The idea of survival, in a corporate world, in the beginning of our society, evolves from a military exploit apart from the government. (The British, the French) We wanted freedom in order to pursue. Very Darwin.

    Now, those who have won the pursuit have risen, like cream, being separated from milk with the idea in mind that they will continue to capitalize their position. Very human.

    It seems that we may be coming full circle. Solomon, the son of David, recognized the pattern in Ecclesiastes.....the idea of the water returning to the sea, evaporating, returning to land, and then via streams, rivers returning to the sea.

    In conclusion, somewhat of a conclusion, I believe this is a sign post that points to a history lesson....namely Rome.....as the Romans became too rich and lazy to protect their conquests they hired others. Those others, eventually, sacked and pillaged most of the "Roman" interests negating all of the hard fought, blood spilled battles that they had won over the centuries.



    posted on Jan, 17 2008 @ 07:27 PM
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    A interesting post,libra I agree that apathy and fear play a large part of what has happend and is hapening to this country for years,look at the Trans-Texas corridor for a example when the local newspapers started to speak out against it,the company that owns the TTC bought them out.People won't speak out unless they are directly threatend,sadly.







    PS: currently the TTC is going to go over the site of the Branch Davidian compound.

    [edit on 17-1-2008 by mike dangerously]



    posted on Jan, 17 2008 @ 07:52 PM
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    Don't forget the Knights Templar... They started as a small military force for the Vatican during the Crusades, but became so financially successful through banking, etc. that the King of France and the Pope conspired to destroy them, and they did.

    They rounded up all the Knights Templar that they could on one day, all around Europe, and lured the leader to the Vatican, only to capture him and burn him at the stake.




    posted on Jan, 17 2008 @ 08:43 PM
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    I see the main problem being the corporate lobbying of politicians. It's pretty obvious that George Bush was put into power (through support of his political campaign) in order to do the bidding of special interest groups. The whole Iraq war was probably a result of lobbying the government from groups who would benefit from reconstruction/security and maybe even broadcast rights. A lot of people have made a lot of money under George Bush, yet the country is close to a recession.

    This reminds me of a computer game I played when I was young called "Syndicate". In that game corporations (syndicates) ruled the people through mind control. They also had private armies which eliminated "harbingers" and also did battle with the private armies of other corporations. The soldiers of these private armies also didn't care about harming civilians, they would just shoot them if they were in the way (Blackwater style).

    In the sequel, "Syndicate Wars", corporations did battle with a religious fundamentalist terrorist organistion called "The Brotherhood" who wanted to take over the world (kind of).

    It's kind of scary that the world is actually heading in that direction.

    [edit on 18-1-2008 by Cthulwho]



    posted on Jan, 17 2008 @ 09:03 PM
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    I think that the shear amount of information you have provided here Libra has been detrimental to responses. There is so much to digest in the OP and links provided that the average ATS member isn't going to take the time to check them out, let alone respond. Honestly, how many readers do you think have taken the time to check out all the supporting evidence provided? 1%? 5%? Even I haven't and I am a reader much more than a poster.Anyway thats neither here nor there.


    You stated that you feel that there is a point of no return. I feel we have already passed it. The corporate media has slowly but steadily turned the average North American citizen into a zombie. Everything is sound bites and reality tv. Look at newspaper sales in the last 10 years. They have plummeted because people want to be told, in as concise a clip as possible, what is going on. They don't want to have to read an article or a opinion piece. They want it packaged in a neat little sound bite.

    War declared, now back to American Idol


    The average person looks at you like you're out of your mind if you bring up subjects such as this. I try but it mostly falls on deaf ears. Why? I think it is because the PTB have managed to dumb down the populace to a point that they can basically do what they want. For the sake of appearances, they'll bring down one of their own(Enron, Conrad Black) to give the illusion of concern. All the while they sit back, gobble up government contracts for everything under the sun, and slowly erode what small semblance of freedom we have left.

    Mercenaries and the people that control them have gotten much smarter in the last 20 years. They have gone from the stereotypical "Rambo" image to that of a corporate entity. They are no longer guns for hire but private security.Which has, as Area 51 has stated, given them rights afforded people. I mean between the US and Canada, much more so in the US but it is prevalent in both, we have come to a psuedo-Fascist state. Corporations and Government are so tightly intertwined that it is hard to tell one from the other some times. Unfortunately, it seems that the corps. are coming out with the most power. We are almost powerless to stop it. In fact we may be powerless. With the rise of private armies and the rights of humans being passed to corporations, there really isn't a true stopping mechanism. They basically can operate with impunity. And as pointed out in Libra's opening post, when caught in a criminal or treasonous act, because of there multi national make up, they just move to another base of operations.

    How do we as common citizens combat that kind of fluidity?

    Can we combat it?

    Does it take removing all lobbying from Government or some other political means?

    Or have we reached the point of nothing less than an armed conflict to rest this power from non human entities?

    If thats the case, who do we fight?

    Do we assault a Black water compound or go straight at the headquarters of Microsoft?

    Do we annex all KBR property on North American soil?

    Or do we full frontal assault Lockheed Martins US head offices?

    Seriously, how do we as the average citizen of US/Canada go up against this. Because for the average Joe Six Pack to stand up and take notice, and fight back, it is going to take one hell of an incident.

    Another thing to consider is the cohesion of the companies in question. They are all very well oiled machines, full of mostly highly trained ex military,whereas any resistance is going to be a loose knit rag tag bunch of civilians and ex military. Where they are well coordinated and connected, we would be struggling to get a real and viable tactical plan in place. Or would it be best just to try and buy them out? Anybody have a spare billion dollars or so laying around?



    posted on Jan, 17 2008 @ 09:24 PM
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    I'm reminded of the way Knights Tempar would hire themselves out to protect people as they journeyed from city to city through the forests of Europe. Fail to hire them, they robbed you just up the path a bit.... i.e. they can turn on you "on a dime"....



    posted on Jan, 18 2008 @ 07:03 AM
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    I think it's double-plus good!



    posted on Jan, 19 2008 @ 03:22 PM
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    Alberta man charged with video piracy
    Eric Volmers, Canwest News Service; Calgary Herald
    Published: Friday, January 18, 2008

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    CALGARY - A 20-year-old man has been charged with illegally videotaping a movie in a Calgary theatre, making him the first person in Alberta and only the second in Canada to be charged with the act since changes were made to the Criminal Code in June to crack down on film piracy.

    Calgary Police say the arrest came after a six-month investigation by a local security company, which had been hired by the Canadian Motion Picture Distribution Association.

    .........A QUOTE FROM A RECENT NEWS ARTICLE.......

    A Local Security Company, (AKA Private Police Force) was used in this small time crime to bring the villain to justice.

    This type of thing.... private POPO being used in conjunction with Civil POPO, will bring an acceptance to the majority of the citizens as they see the "good" that they are doing.

    Starting small, arresting people with little means of fighting back in a legal sense, paves the road to larger "private busts." It brings widespread acceptance to the idea of private police.

    To a cop, it means a whole other thing. It is the beginning of an offense being placed against the Police Union's. As corporations become more powerful they will, little by little, take away the power of the Local Police Union and at the same time, lobby the local governments to hire a cheaper, leaner, meaner private police force......which no longer answers to the people....it answers to a corporate entity that places the value of a dollar higher then that of a human being.



    posted on Jan, 20 2008 @ 09:55 AM
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    reply to post by Critical_Mass
     


    i totally agree with your post. complacency plays a major roll in this scenario and it is so very frustrating. sheepal.



    posted on Jan, 21 2008 @ 03:55 AM
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    ... No matter How I say this it's gonna sound just plain weird... But here goes anyway.

    You guys are waking up to a reality I was reading as speculative near future sci fi for my entire teenage years... The people that wrote those books and are still writing them in some cases saw this coming and because they shared their knowledge so did I....

    I am not shocked to hear that blackwater is reportedly supplying so called terrorist orgs and etc... nor am I shocked to hear that more and more security and Intel even are being ran through Contractors (yes blackwater has an Intel arm and there are also corporations out there that if you read between the lines are literally corporate covert ops groups for hire)

    Now the question of what we should do about it... here's where it gets interesting, I personally think you really want to do something about it support Home fabrication and power generation tech. My reasoning is simple ... if a community can provide for better than half of it's own needs infrastructure and goods wise.... how long do you think that community is going to keep being willing to send off large amounts of tax dollars it could spend more effectivelly itself?

    Hyper balkanization is what will save us if we can get the tech and knowledge infrastructure in place to make it work... Basically drive them out of the market... if you can make everything you need on a daily basis and only a very few highly complex technological items need to be acquired you are much harder to dictate to.



    posted on May, 4 2008 @ 02:37 PM
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    reply to post by thelibra
     


    I have to say awesome thread from what I quickly perused. I'll come back and take a better look at it later. I'm doing a thread on Blackwater you might find interesting along with making additions to and I'll be sure and add to the content of your thread as well.

    Blackwater : Right-Wing Conservative America, Whether You Like It Or Not...

    Here's a YouTube of Ozzy and Black Sabbath's "War Pigs" to add to the mood of the thread :



    I posted these YouTube videos on My thread so I thought I'd share them with this thread as well.



    From This Thread :

    Blackwater : Right-Wing Conservative America, Whether You Like It Or Not...

    I just had a great idea and looked for "Blackwater MOUT Training" on YouTube and found this neat training video :



    Here's another YouTube link to a story where Erik Prince is answering to a Congressional Hearing :




    [edit on 4-5-2008 by SpartanKingLeonidas]





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