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Breaking News City of Peshawar, Pakistan, Army Run School Attacked, Resulted in Killing of 141 (132 Students) and 200 Wounded or Injured By 7 Taliban Terrorist Wearing Suicide Vests — Videos

Posted on December 17, 2014. Filed under: Blogroll, Bomb, Constitution, Crime, Crisis, Culture, Faith, Family, Federal Government, Foreign Policy, Freedom, Friends, government, government spending, history, Homicide, Islam, Law, liberty, Life, Links, People, Philosophy, Photos, Pistols, Politics, Press, Rants, Raves, Rifles, Terrorism, Video, War, Weapons, Welfare, Wisdom | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

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Story 1: Breaking News City of Peshawar, Pakistan, Army Run School Attacked, Resulted in Killing of 141 (132 Students) and 200 Wounded or Injured By 7 Taliban Terrorist Wearing Suicide Vests — Videos

Pakistan-School-Attacked-in-Peshawar-650x430pakistan_army_school_attack_624mapTaliban_attack_school_in_PakistanTaliban-attack-on-Pakistan-school-kills-141-mostly-children (6)pakistan-school-attack-2Pakistan-Terror-Attackpeshawar-attack-world-prays-after-violent-school-massacre-pakistan-landovstudentsTaliban-attack-on-Pakistan-school-kills-141-mostly-children (1)Taliban-attack-on-Pakistan-school-kills-141-mostly-children (4)Taliban-attack-on-Pakistan-school-kills-141-mostly-children (3)Taliban-attack-on-Pakistan-school-kills-141-mostly-children (5)Taliban-attack-on-Pakistan-school-kills-141-mostly-children (2)pakistan-taliban-attack-schoolTaliban-attack-on-Pakistan-school-kills-141-mostly-childrencnadles11

Pakistan Army school Terrorist Attack on Army School in Peshawar Video | Taliban attack school

army school ATTACK Pakistan: Peshawar army school ATTACK kills 21, 500 held hostage Video of attack Terrorist Attack on Army School in Peshawar Pakistan Video | Taliban attack school Pakistan
At least 126 people have been killed, including 84 children, after Taliban gunmen stormed a military school in the north-western Pakistani city of Peshawar, in the worst ever militant attack to hit the troubled region.

It was reported that one suicide bomber blew himself up in a room containing 60 children and a teacher was set on fire in front of pupils, with the children forced to watch.

The attack started with the gunmen entering the 500-pupil school – which has students aged 10 to 18 – in the early hours.

The jihadists shot their way into the building and went from classroom to classroom, shooting at random.

Army commandos quickly arrived at the scene and exchanged fire with the gunmen. Eye-witnesses described how students cowered under desks as dead bodies were strewn along corridors.

Around 160 children, aged 13 and 14, are being held hostage, with four gunmen still inside. A police inspector said they had trapped the terrorists in the principal’s office. Many of the soldiers involved in the rescue operation are trying to save their own children.

During the last hour there were seven blasts. Two of them are said to be suicide blasts, a police superintendent said, the rest were grenade blasts.

‘We selected the army’s school for the attack because the government is targeting our families and females,’ said Taliban spokesman Muhammad Umar Khorasani. ‘We want them to feel the pain.’

Pakistan school attack: more than 130 dead in Taliban attack, most of them children – TALIBAN

Taliban School Attack Peshawar Pakistan School Attack 126 killed Take Hostages

World leaders condemn Pakistan school attack

Nobel prize winner Malala ‘heartbroken’ by Pakistan school attack

145+ children, killed in Pakistani Punjabi ISI proxies,Taliban high school attack

Peshawar school attack: Pakistani Taliban kills at least 135 people, most of them young children

Taliban School Attack Peshawar (VIDEO) Pakistan Children Shot Dead in Army School

Raw: Militants Attack Pakistan School

Pakistani officials say siege at school over

By RIAZ KHAN and REBECCA SANTANA

In the deadliest slaughter of innocents in Pakistan in years, Taliban gunmen attacked a military-run school Tuesday and killed 141 people — almost all of them students — before government troops ended the siege.

The massacre of innocent children horrified a country already weary of unending terrorist attacks. Pakistan’s teenage Nobel Peace laureate Malala Yousafzai — herself a survivor of a Taliban shooting — said she was “heartbroken” by the bloodshed.

Even Taliban militants in neighboring Afghanistan decried the killing spree, calling it “un-Islamic.”

If the Pakistani Taliban extremists had hoped the attack would cause the government to ease off its military offensive that began in June in the country’s tribal region, it appeared to have the opposite effect. Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif pledged to step up the campaign that — along with U.S. drone strikes — has targeted the militants.

“The fight will continue. No one should have any doubt about it,” Sharif said. “We will take account of each and every drop of our children’s blood.”

Taliban fighters have struggled to maintain their potency in the face of the military operation. They vowed a wave of violence in response to the operation, but until Tuesday, there has only been one major attack by a splinter group near the Pakistan-India border in November. Analysts said the school siege showed that even diminished, the militant group still could inflict horrific carnage.

The rampage at the Army Public School and College began in the morning when seven militants scaled a back wall using a ladder, said Maj. Gen. Asim Bajwa, a military spokesman. When they reached an auditorium where students had gathered for an event, they opened fire.

A 14-year-old, Mehran Khan, said about 400 students were in the hall when the gunmen broke through the doors and started shooting. They shot one of the teachers in the head and then set her on fire and shouted “God is great!” as she screamed, added Khan, who survived by playing dead.

From there, they went to classrooms and other parts of the school.

“Their sole purpose, it seems, was to kill those innocent kids. That’s what they did,” Bajwa said. Of the 141 people slain before government troops ended the assault eight hours later, 132 were children and nine were staff members. Another 121 students and three staff members were wounded.

The seven attackers, wearing vests of explosives, all died in the eight-hour assault. It was not immediately clear if they were all killed by the soldiers or whether they blew themselves up, he said.

The wounded — some still wearing their green school blazers — flooded into hospitals as terrified parents searched for their children. By evening, funeral services were already being held for many of the victims as clerics announced the deaths over mosque loudspeakers.

The government declared three days of mourning for what appeared to be Pakistan’s deadliest since a 2007 suicide bombing in the port city of Karachi killed 150 people.

“My son was in uniform in the morning. He is in a casket now,” wailed one parent, Tahir Ali, as he came to the hospital to collect the body of his 14-year-old son, Abdullah. “My son was my dream. My dream has been killed.”

One of the wounded students, Abdullah Jamal, said he was with a group of eighth, ninth and 10th graders who were getting first-aid instructions and training with a team of army medics when the violence became real. Panic broke out when the shooting began.

“I saw children falling down who were crying and screaming. I also fell down. I learned later that I have got a bullet,” he said, speaking from his hospital bed.

Another student, Amir Mateen, said they locked the door from the inside when they heard the shooting, but gunmen blasted through anyway and opened fire.

Responding to the attack, armored personnel carriers were deployed around the school, and a military helicopter circled overhead.

A little more than 1,000 students and staff were registered at the school, which is part of a network run by the military, although the surrounding area is not heavily fortified. The student body is made up of both children of military personnel as well as civilians.

Most of the students appeared to be civilians rather than children of army staff, said Javed Khan, a government official. Analysts said the militants likely targeted the school because of its military connections.

“It’s a kind of a message that ‘we can also kill your children,'” said Pakistani analyst Zahid Hussain.

In a statement to reporters, Taliban spokesman Mohammed Khurasani claimed responsibility for the attack, saying it was retribution for the military’s operation in nearby North Waziristan, the northwestern tribal region where the group’s fighters largely have been based.

“We targeted their kids so that they could know how it feels when they hit our kids,” Khurasani said. He said the attackers were advised not to target “underage” children but did not elaborate on what that meant.

In its offensive, the military said it would go after all militant groups operating in the region. Security officials and civilians feared retribution by militants, but Pakistan has been relatively calm.

The attack raised the issue of whether this was the last gasp of a militant group crippled by a government offensive or whether the militants could regroup.

Hussain, the Pakistani analyst, called the attack an “act of desperation.”

The violence will throw public support behind the campaign in North Waziristan, he said. It also shows that the Pakistani Taliban still maintains a strong intelligence network and remains a threat.

The attack drew swift condemnation from around the world. U.S. President Barack Obama said the “terrorists have once again showed their depravity.”

U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry added: “The images are absolutely gut-wrenching: young children carried away in ambulances, a teacher burned alive in front of the students, a house of learning turned into a house of unspeakable horror.”

Prime Minister Narendra Modi of India, Pakistan’s longtime regional rival, called it “a senseless act of unspeakable brutality.”

“My heart goes out to everyone who lost their loved ones today. We share their pain & offer our deepest condolences,” Modi said in a series of tweeted statements.

U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon said it was a “an act of horror and rank cowardice to attack defenseless children while they learn.”

The violence recalled the attack on Malala Yousafzai, who was shot in the head by a Taliban gunman outside her school in the Swat Valley for daring to speak up about girls’ rights. She survived to become a global advocate for girls’ education and received her Nobel Peace Prize last week, but has not returned to Pakistan in the two years since the shooting out of security concerns.

“Innocent children in their school have no place in horror such as this,” the 17-year-old said. “I condemn these atrocious and cowardly acts.”

http://news.yahoo.com/pakistan-taliban-attack-military-school-kill-2-072153239.html

Death ‘All Around Me': Victims Relive Pakistan School Massacre

BY MUSHTAQ YUSUFZAI, WAJAHAT S. KHAN, F. BRINLEY BRUTON AND ALASTAIR JAMIESON

SHAWAR, Pakistan — Pakistan was plunged into mourning Tuesday after Taliban militants in suicide vests laid siege to a school, massacring more than 130 children during eight hours of sheer terror. In total, 145 people were killed, officials said.

Those who survived emerged with stories of horror — of gunmen shooting indiscriminately into crowds or killing youngsters one by one.

“One of my teachers was crying, she was shot in the hand and she was crying in pain,” Shahrukh Khan, 15, who was shot in both legs but survived, told Reuters. “One terrorist then walked up to her and started shooting her until she stopped making any sound.

“All around me my friends were lying injured and dead.”

A military source told NBC News that the attackers were wearing police uniforms and suicide vests.

“They burnt a teacher in front of the students in a classroom,” he said. “They literally set the teacher on fire with gasoline and made the kids watch.”

The government of Pakistan declared three days of mourning for the lives lost.

Peshawar Father: ‘They Can’t Find my Son, Dead or Alive’

Maj. Gen. Asim Bajwa, a military spokesman, told NBC News that at least 132 children were killed in the attack, along with 10 staff from the school — including the principal. Seven militants were killed and seven special forces soldiers were injured.

“They didn’t take any hostages initially and started firing in the hall,” Bajwa also told a press conference. He told NBC News that they had enough ammunition and rations to have kept up the siege for days.

At a hospital near the school, blood stained the floors. Crying relatives roamed the wards and searched operating rooms, desperately searching for their sons and daughters.

One room at at the Central Military hospital was filled with teenagers who had bullet wounds, shrapnel embedded in their flesh and burns.

A doctor, Brig. Muhammad Waqar, said his son attends the school and he watched with dread as victim after victim was brought in

“I was waiting for him to turn up dead in an ambulance,” he said. “I wanted to grab a gun and go to the school.”

The Pakistani Taliban have claimed responsibility for the attack, which Pakistani officials said appeared to be aimed at the children of senior military personnel.

Uniformed militants struck shortly before 11 a.m. local time (1 a.m. ET) when about 1,000 students — in grades one through 10 — and teachers were believed to be inside.

“We were standing outside the school and firing suddenly started and there was chaos everywhere and the screams of children and teachers,” said Jamshed Khan, a school bus driver.

“The gunmen entered class by class and shot some kids one by one,” one student who was in the Army Public School in Peshawar at the time told local media.

As the siege continued and Pakistani security forces battled to stop the assault, five “heavy” explosions were heard from the school at around 5 a.m. ET. Bombs planted by the attackers slowed rescue efforts, a military official said, and the massacre was not declared over until after 9 a.m. ET.

Dozens of Children Killed as Taliban Gunmen Storm Peshawar School

Wounded student Abdullah Jamal told The Associated Press he was getting first-aid instructions and training with a team of Pakistani army medics when the violence began for real. When the shooting started, Jamal said nobody knew what was going on in the first few seconds.

“Then I saw children falling down who were crying and screaming. I also fell down. I learned later that I have got a bullet,” he said, speaking from his hospital bed. He had been shot in the leg.

Hours after all the children had been removed from the school, soldiers angrily roamed the campus.

“It’s interesting that they came through this graveyard,” said one officer, pointing to a cemetery adjacent to the school. “It’s sad. They stepped over the graves of the dead to create more death.”

President Barack Obama slammed the attack and said America stands with the people of Pakistan and its government’s efforts to fight terrorism.

“By targeting students and teachers in this heinous attack, terrorists have once again shown their depravity,” he said in a statement.

As the carnage played out in Peshawar, Pakistan’s military carried out 10 airstrikes in the Khyber region, between Peshawar and the Afghanistan border, based on “actionable intelligence” according to a spokesman.

The Pakistani Taliban has vowed to attack government targets as it fights off a huge army operation in the country’s tribal region.

Taliban spokesman Muhammad Umar Khorasani told Reuters his group was responsible for the attack. “Our suicide bombers have entered the school, they have instructions not to harm the children, but to target the army personnel,” he said.

http://www.nbcnews.com/storyline/pakistan-school-massacre/death-all-around-me-victims-relive-pakistan-school-massacre-n269011

 

 

Suzanna Gratia Hupp explains meaning of 2nd Amendment!

“Before a standing army can rule, the people must be disarmed; as they are in almost every kingdom in Europe. The supreme power in America cannot enforce unjust laws by the sword; because the whole body of the people are armed….”- Noah Webster, An Examination of the Leading Principles of the Federal Constitution, 1787

On October 16, 1991, Hennard drove his 1987 Ford Ranger pickup truck through the front window of a Luby’s Cafeteria at 1705 East Central Texas Expressway in Killeen, yelled “This is what Bell County has done to me!”, then opened fire on the restaurant’s patrons and staff with a Glock 17 pistol and later a Ruger P89. About 80 people were in the restaurant at the time. He stalked, shot, and killed 23 people and wounded another 20 before committing suicide. During the shooting, he approached Suzanna Gratia Hupp and her parents. Hupp had actually brought a handgun to the Luby’s Cafeteria that day, but had left it in her vehicle due to the laws in force at the time, forbidding citizens from carrying firearms. According to her later testimony in favor of Missouri’s HB-1720 bill[1] and in general, after she realized that her firearm was not in her purse, but “a hundred feet away in [her] car”, her father charged at Hennard in an attempt to subdue him, only to be gunned down; a short time later, her mother was also shot and killed. (Hupp later expressed regret for abiding by the law in question by leaving her firearm in her car, rather than keeping it on her person. One patron, Tommy Vaughn, threw himself through a plate-glass window to allow others to escape. Hennard allowed a mother and her four-year-old child to leave. He reloaded several times and still had ammunition remaining when he committed suicide by shooting himself in the head after being cornered and wounded by police.

Reacting to the massacre, in 1995 the Texas Legislature passed a shall-issue gun law allowing Texas citizens with the required permit to carry concealed weapons. The law had been campaigned for by Suzanna Hupp, who was present at the Luby’s massacre and both of whose parents were shot and killed. Hupp testified across the country in support of concealed-handgun laws, and was elected to the Texas House of Representatives in 1996. The law was signed by then-Governor George W. Bush and became part of a broad movement to allow U.S. citizens to easily obtain permits to carry concealed weapons.

5 Deadliest Mass Shootings in the USA

Penn & Teller on Gun Control

 

Ted Nugent on Gun Control – Some Of The best Words Ever Spoken

 

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Breaking News — Two Hostages and Refugee Iranian Muslim Terrorist, Man Haron Monis, Killed in Sydney, Australia, 4 Injured, After 16 Hour Siege — Videos

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Story 1: Breaking News — Two Hostages and Refugee Iranian Muslim Terrorist, Man Haron Monis, Killed in Sydney, Australia, 4 Injured, After 16 Hour Siege — Videos

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Australia: Sydney cafe gunman “infatuated with extremism” says Abbott

Prime Minister Tony Abbott spoke from Canberra on Tuesday, following the Sydney hostage siege which ended after 17 hours at a Lindt chocolate cafe at Martin Place. Abbott stated the “lone gunman” was dead after a standoff with police, and that “tragically” two hostages were killed. A New South Wales police officer was also wounded by a gunshot to the face.

Sydney Hostage Police Storm Lindt Cafe in Sydney 2 Shot Dead – 3 Injured (RAW FOOTAGE)

BREAKING NEWS SYDNEY TERROR SIEGE 5 Hostage Left lintd cafe live video

President Of Australia On Terror Attack In Sydney

Australian Terrorist Attack: Gunman Takes Hostages In Sydney Cafe

President Obama praises Australia’s gun control

The Ultimate TRUTH About The Failed Gun Ban Control Experience (Documentary)

It is a common fantasy that gun bans make society safer. In 2002 — five years after enacting its gun ban — the Australian Bureau of Criminology acknowledged there is no correlation between gun control and the use of firearms in violent crime. In fact, the percent of murders committed with a firearm was the highest it had ever been in 2006 (16.3 percent).

Even Australia’s Bureau of Crime Statistics and Research acknowledges that the gun ban had no significant impact on the amount of gun-involved crime:

In 2006, assault rose 49.2 percent and robbery 6.2 percent.
Sexual assault — Australia’s equivalent term for rape — increased 29.9 percent.
Overall, Australia’s violent crime rate rose 42.2 percent.
Moreover, Australia and the United States — where no gun-ban exists — both experienced similar decreases in murder rates:

Between 1995 and 2007, Australia saw a 31.9 percent decrease; without a gun ban, America’s rate dropped 31.7 percent.
During the same time period, all other violent crime indices increased in Australia: assault rose 49.2 percent and robbery 6.2 percent.
Sexual assault — Australia’s equivalent term for rape — increased 29.9 percent.
Overall, Australia’s violent crime rate rose 42.2 percent.
At the same time, U.S. violent crime decreased 31.8 percent: rape dropped 19.2 percent; robbery decreased 33.2 percent; aggravated assault dropped 32.2 percent.
Australian women are now raped over three times as often as American women.

When you hand over your firearms,this is what you can expect!

Proof Gun Control is 100% BS

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Suzanna Gratia Hupp explains meaning of 2nd Amendment!

“Before a standing army can rule, the people must be disarmed; as they are in almost every kingdom in Europe. The supreme power in America cannot enforce unjust laws by the sword; because the whole body of the people are armed….”- Noah Webster, An Examination of the Leading Principles of the Federal Constitution, 1787

On October 16, 1991, Hennard drove his 1987 Ford Ranger pickup truck through the front window of a Luby’s Cafeteria at 1705 East Central Texas Expressway in Killeen, yelled “This is what Bell County has done to me!”, then opened fire on the restaurant’s patrons and staff with a Glock 17 pistol and later a Ruger P89. About 80 people were in the restaurant at the time. He stalked, shot, and killed 23 people and wounded another 20 before committing suicide. During the shooting, he approached Suzanna Gratia Hupp and her parents. Hupp had actually brought a handgun to the Luby’s Cafeteria that day, but had left it in her vehicle due to the laws in force at the time, forbidding citizens from carrying firearms. According to her later testimony in favor of Missouri’s HB-1720 bill[1] and in general, after she realized that her firearm was not in her purse, but “a hundred feet away in [her] car”, her father charged at Hennard in an attempt to subdue him, only to be gunned down; a short time later, her mother was also shot and killed. (Hupp later expressed regret for abiding by the law in question by leaving her firearm in her car, rather than keeping it on her person. One patron, Tommy Vaughn, threw himself through a plate-glass window to allow others to escape. Hennard allowed a mother and her four-year-old child to leave. He reloaded several times and still had ammunition remaining when he committed suicide by shooting himself in the head after being cornered and wounded by police.

Reacting to the massacre, in 1995 the Texas Legislature passed a shall-issue gun law allowing Texas citizens with the required permit to carry concealed weapons. The law had been campaigned for by Suzanna Hupp, who was present at the Luby’s massacre and both of whose parents were shot and killed. Hupp testified across the country in support of concealed-handgun laws, and was elected to the Texas House of Representatives in 1996. The law was signed by then-Governor George W. Bush and became part of a broad movement to allow U.S. citizens to easily obtain permits to carry concealed weapons.

5 Deadliest Mass Shootings in the USA

THREE DEAD IN BLOODY END TO SIEGE: Two hostages dead and Muslim gunman killed as police storm Sydney cafe with assault rifles and stun grenades moments after hostages fled

  • Police stormed the cafe in central Sydney where a gunman held hostages for more than 16 hours
  • Police moved in firing automatic weapons and throwing grenades as hostages were seen fleeing in terror from cafe
  • Live TV footage showed hostages running frantically from the cafe at shortly after 2 am in small groups 
  • It came hours after Man Haron Monis was named as the gunman holding people hostage in a Sydney café
  • Iranian refugee, 50, was charged with accessory in the murder of his ex-wife
  • He was also facing multiple charges of sexual assault while claiming to be a ‘spiritual healer’ 
  • Monis received 300 community service hours for sending hate mail to the families of Australian dead soldiers
  • The siege follows an unsuccessful attempt to have these charges overturned in the High Court on Friday 
  • He forced hostages to hold up a black flag with white writing in Arabic, an emblem linked to terror groups 

By Emily Crane and Daniel Piotrowski and Sarah Dean and Louise Cheer and Candace Sutton for Daily Mail Australia and Leesa Smith and Heather Mcnab

An Iranian-born gunman was killed, two of his hostages are dead and four injured after a dramatic and chaotic firefight brought an end to a terrorist siege at a Sydney cafe.

Teams of heavily armed police swooped on the Lindt Chocolat cafe in a hail of gunfire, ending a tense stand-off where Man Haron Monis had been holding around 17 people captive.

Police issued a statement describing the event as a confrontation with a 50-year man, who they said died after shots were fired. The man was pronounced dead after being taken to hospital, police said.

A man, aged 34, and a woman, aged 38, also died, the police said in their statement.

Of the injured, two women have non life-threatening injuries and a police officer was injured by gunshot pellets, the police said. Another woman has a gunshot wound to the shoulder.

Live television coverage earlier showed at least two people being taken away from the scene on stretchers, while one hostage was seen being carried out of the building. She appeared to be in pain and blood flowed down her legs.

Nine News reported that eleven hostages had been accounted for after the police raid, which occurred shortly after 2am.

An injured hostage is carried away on a stretcher by paramedics after police stormed the Lindt Chocolat cafe in central Sydney where around 20 people were being held by a gunman during a 17-hour siege. One hostage and the gunman were reportedly killed in the firefight

A hostage feared dead is carried out of the cafe after they were reportedly shot by the hostage-taker, prompting police to storm the building

A hostage feared dead is carried out of the cafe after they were reportedly shot by the hostage-taker, prompting police to storm the building

A female hostage is carried out and away from the cafe - clearly in distress with blood pouring down the legs

Man Haron Monis bound in chains in protest of his charges of using the postal service for menace

Man Haron Monis bound in chains in protest of his charges of using the postal service for menace

With terror etched on their faces, two female hostages run into the arms of armed police at the back of the building

With terror etched on their faces, two female hostages run into the arms of armed police at the back of the building

Siege over: Police raided the cafe in central Sydney early Tuesday, bringing a dramatic end to a 17-hour siefe. The raid came moments after some hostages fled the Lindt cafe after more than 16

Siege over: Police raided the cafe in central Sydney early Tuesday, bringing a dramatic end to a 17-hour siefe. The raid came moments after some hostages fled the Lindt cafe after more than 16

Petrified: Two heavily armed police officers assist a hostage away from Lindt Cafe in Martin Place in central Sydney

Petrified: Two heavily armed police officers assist a hostage away from Lindt Cafe in Martin Place in central Sydney

Police officers wearing armoured suits walk with a robot towards Lindt Cafe in Martin Place to check for booby traps after the siege ended

Police officers wearing armoured suits walk with a robot towards Lindt Cafe in Martin Place to check for booby traps after the siege ended

Seven Network reporter Chris Reason, who was watching the siege unfold from his newsroom across the road, said some of the hostages broke free after Monis attempted to usher the hostages from one side of the café to the other.

One man emerged from the cafe with his hands up and lay down on the ground in front of police. Seconds later, a group of at least five hostages escaped from the cafe.

It is believed that Monis then fired his shotgun, reportedly killing one of his captives. This appeared to be the trigger for tactical police to move in.

Within seconds, they had blasted through the cafe door and opened fire with automatic weapons, also hurling what appeared to be stun grenades. The sounds of explosions echoed through the city, and the flashes of rifle fire and the grenades lit up the area.

The gunfight lasted less than two minutes, and more hostages emerged after the police raid.

As the scene calmed down, a bomb disposal robot was seen entering the cafe.

Self-proclaimed Islamic cleric Man Haron Monis, a 49-year-old man living in southwest Sydney, came to Australia from Iran as a refugee in 1996.

He first came to the attention of authorities when he started sending hate mail to the families of Australian dead soldiers between 2007 and 2009, according to The Daily Telegraph.

The siege in the Lindt cafe in Martin Place on Monday reportedly followed an unsuccessful effort to have a conviction related to penning those letters overturned in the High Court on Friday, according to The Age.

Monis received 300 community service hours and a two-year good behaviour bond for the correspondence, which he claims were his version of sympathy cards and sent with the help from his girlfriend Amirah Droudis.

Man Haron Monis - also known as Sheik Haron - has been named as the gunman holding up to 15 people hostage in a Sydney café

Man Haron Monis – also known as Sheik Haron – has been named as the gunman holding up to 15 people hostage in a Sydney café

Heavily armed police remained posted around the cafe as night fell and the hostage drama continued into the night

Heavily armed police remained posted around the cafe as night fell and the hostage drama continued into the night. Inside, the remaining hostages were brought food and were observed by witnesses as looking ‘pained’

The hostage-taker was charged as an accessory to the murder of his ex-wife – who was allegedly stabbed and set on fire on a flight of stairs in her western Sydney apartment block in November 2013. The man’s current partner was charged with murder but they both received bail as the case was deemed too weak.

He was arrested in April this year for the sexual assault of a 27-year-old woman in 2002 after luring her to his clinic following claims he was as an expert in astrology, meditation and black magic, The Daily Telegraph reported.

Monis was slapped with an additional 40 charges in October after more victims came forward alleging incidents took place in his spiritual healing clinic in Station Street in Wentworthville, western Sydney.

High-profile Sydney Muslim leader Jamal Rifi told Daily Mail Australia he knew of the gunman but not on a personal level.

‘What he expressed did not reflect the Muslim community which is why he is not part of the larger Muslim community and that’s why he does not belong to a mainstream mosque,’ he said.

‘He wanted his name known and may want some gratification from the reaction to this’

The hostages were seized by the gunman on Monday morning after he stormed the Sydney cafe. Several captives made an early courageous break for freedom but it was thought that about 15 hostages remained in the cafe through the night.

During the stand-off with police, three videos were released on YouTube, believed to be of three female hostages putting the gunman’s demands to police. Those demands included the police bringing an ISIS flag to the cafe and insisting on a conversation with Prime Minister Tony Abbott.

Daily Mail Australia decided not to air the disturbing footage which was taken down during the night. The gunman’s name was released soon after midnight, after senior police gave their approval to various media outlets.

The seige in the Lindt cafe in Martin Place on Monday follows an unsuccessful attempt to have the charges overturned linked to the hate mail he sent to the families of dead Australian soldiersin the High Court on Friday

The seige in the Lindt cafe in Martin Place on Monday follows an unsuccessful attempt to have the charges overturned linked to the hate mail he sent to the families of dead Australian soldiersin the High Court on Friday

The drama began unfolding Monday morning when the gunman entered the cafe, located in one of busiest plazas in Sydney’s central business district, and pulled a shotgun from a blue carry bag and disabled the doors.

Soon afterwards, hostages were seen with their hands pressed against the windows holding up the Islamic Shahada flag. It is an emblem of extremist group Jabhat al-Nusra, which is fighting the Assad government in Syria. The man was described as wearing a headband with Arabic writing on it.

Scores of police rushed to the scene, evacuating surrounding buildings and closing off part of the city. The scene sent shockwaves across Australia, where terror attacks have rarely touched home soil.

Paramilitary police armed with automatic rifles spent Monday surrounding the cafe, with senior commanders saying they were prepared to take a patient approach to the siege, hoping to end it through negotiation with the gunman.

A total of five hostages, including barista Elly Chen, managed to escape the cafe by scrambling out a side door about seven hours into the drama. Fear etched on their faces, they ran into the arms of waiting police.

It is understood the hostages escaped from the cafe, rather than being released by their captor. One former male hostage was taken to nearby St Vincent’s Hospital, in Sydney’s inner suburbs, and is being treated for a pre-existing condition.

The gunman flew into a rage when he realised some of his captives had escaped.

‘The gunman could be seen from here getting extremely agitated, shouting at remaining hostages,’ tweeted journalist Chris Reason.

The light inside the building went off through the night but police would not reveal whether it was a law enforcement or hostage-taker tactic. Mr Reason said he could see the gunman rotating the hostages through positions in the store’s window.

‘From inside Martin Place we can see the faces of hostages – pained, strained, eyes red and raw,’ he recounted. Food and water was also being delivered to the prisoners from the cafe’s back kitchens.

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Arriving as a refugee in Australia in 1996, the hostage-taker was charged as an accessory to the murder of his ex-wife - who was allegedly stabbed and set on fire on a flight of stairs in her western Sydney apartment block in November 2013

Arriving as a refugee in Australia in 1996, the hostage-taker was charged as an accessory to the murder of his ex-wife – who was allegedly stabbed and set on fire on a flight of stairs in her western Sydney apartment block in November 2013

A young female employee came running out of the Lindt cafe shortly before 5pm and was sheltered by waiting police

Another distraught female worker, cafe barista Elly Chen, bolted from the shop before taking cover with police

A total of five hostages have now escaped Lindt cafe – it’s believed they escaped and were not released

One of the young female employees was visibly upset as she grabbed hold of armed police

One of the young female employees was visibly upset as she grabbed hold of armed police

'Omg Elly!! So glad you're OK': Ms Chen, pictured, was the fifth hostage, scrambling from the cafe with her hands in the air

‘Omg Elly!! So glad you’re OK': Ms Chen, pictured, was the fifth hostage, scrambling from the cafe with her hands in the air

Freedom: Ms Chen was helped to a cover immediately after she burst from the Lindt Cafe store

Freedom: Ms Chen was helped to a cover immediately after she burst from the Lindt Cafe store

Daily Mail Australia understands a 25-year-old female fashion industry worker and two female baristas aged in their 30s were among that number.

Police Commissioner Andrew Scipione said overnight that police would do whatever it takes for the situation to be peacefully resolved.

Sydney was eerily quiet on Monday night. Office buildings went into lockdown earlier this morning, Martin Place train station – a central thoroughfare for workers – was shuttered. Events at the Opera House, such as a performance of the Nutcracker, were cancelled as the city icon was evacuated.

Hundreds of heavily armed police, operating under unprecedented Task Force Pioneer counter-terrorism protocols, were scouring the city, completely isolating the darkened cafe.

Two terrified men were spotted fleeing the Lindt cafe in Martin Place shortly before 3.45pm

Two terrified men were spotted fleeing the Lindt cafe in Martin Place shortly before 3.45pm

Two men, believed to be customers, ran around a corner and hid behind heavily armed police after six hours inside the cafe

Two men, believed to be customers, ran around a corner and hid behind heavily armed police after six hours inside the cafe

A male employee wearing an apron frantically ran out of a side fire exit and hid behind police

A male employee wearing an apron frantically ran out of a side fire exit and hid behind police

BThe three men are believed to have escaped from the cafe after six hours

Many remain: Around 10 hostages are thought to remain inside the Lindt chocolate cafe 

Many remain: Around 10 hostages are thought to remain inside the Lindt chocolate cafe

On Monday morning, columnist Chris Kenny, who was in the shop about 20 minutes before the siege began, said he understood the automatic glass sliding doors had been disabled after the gunman stormed the store.

‘I did speak to a couple of people who saw a bit more of this unfold than I did,’ he said. ‘One woman said she tried to go into the shop just after I came out with my takeaway coffee but the doors wouldn’t open.

‘So obviously whoever is doing this has disabled the automatic glass sliding doors to stop anyone else going in and she said immediately she could see there was a weapon.

‘The woman was quite frantic but very clear what she was telling (the police).

‘I know the faces of the people who are sitting there enjoying a morning coffee.’

2GB radio host Ray Hadley said he had three tense telephone conversations with one of the hostages inside the cafe and he could hear the gunman giving demands.

The hostage asked to be put to air live following the instructions of the gunman. However, Hadley refused saying he didn’t have the expertise to deal with the situation.

‘There are some people who are not well. They’ve been in there for five hours, they’re distraught,’ he said.

‘I’m not in a position to comply with requests that have been made, I can’t.

‘The media can’t play a role in negotiating with people purporting to be from Islamic State holding hostages in a cafe in Sydney. This is the job of authorities to solve htis problem.

‘They want us to say things that we simply can’t say.’

Witnesses described the chaotic scenes in the legal, business and media centre as it was shut down and scores of heavily armed police surrounded the Lindt building.

All of the chocolate chain’s stores around Sydney were closed following the incident, in an act of camaraderie.

Dozens of people are being held hostage by a terrorist who stormed into a central Sydney cafe with a gun and forced crying women to hold a black Islamic flag up to the window

Dozens of people are being held hostage by a terrorist who stormed into a central Sydney cafe with a gun and forced crying women to hold a black Islamic flag up to the window

A man believed to be one of the hostage-takers was filmed wearing a black headband covered in Arabic inside the cafe

A man believed to be one of the hostage-takers was filmed wearing a black headband covered in Arabic inside the cafe

Terrified customers and employees were among those standing with their hands against the window at the Lindt cafe in Sydney

Terrified customers and employees were among those standing with their hands against the window at the Lindt cafe in Sydney

A hostage could be seen pressing their hands up against the window of the cafe

A hostage could be seen pressing their hands up against the window of the cafe

One blonde-haired hostage was pictured inside the cafe through the glass doors standing in the middle of the shop

One blonde-haired hostage was pictured inside the cafe through the glass doors standing in the middle of the shop

SYDNEY SIEGE TIMELINE

9.45am – A number of hostages held inside a cafe in Sydney’s Martin Place with an Islamic flag pressed up against a window.

10.14am – Police establish a 150m exclusion zone around the cafe with specialist police outside the shop.

10.55am – The flag being displayed appears to be the Shahada flag which has been adopted by extremist groups such as the al-Qaeda-linked al-Nusra Front.

11.40am – Channel Seven air footage of alleged armed offender. He is middle aged with a salt and pepper beard, wearing a headband with Islamic writing.

11.51am – NSW Police try to make contact with the people inside the cafe. They advise workers who are trapped in buildings inside the police cordon to stay away from windows.

1.30pm – NSW Police Commissioner Andrew Scipione says they had moved to a ‘footing’ similar to dealing with a terrorist attack.

1.55pm – NSW Premier Mike Baird says Sydney is being tested today, but ‘we will remain a democratic society’

2.45pm – Lindt Chocolat Cafe Australia thank the public for their support via Facebook, saying they are ‘deeply concerned over this serious incident’

3.37pm – Three male hostages run out of the cafe.

3.50pm – NSW Police Deputy Commissioner Catherine Burn confirms negotiators have spoken with a gunman.

5.00pm – Two female Lindt workers leave the cafe.

Police kept their guns raised on the fire exit after an employee unexpectedly ran from the cafe

Police kept their guns raised on the fire exit after an employee unexpectedly ran from the cafe

Police are stationed behind a ballistic shield with weapons drawn outside the fire door where a hostage escaped from

Police are stationed behind a ballistic shield with weapons drawn outside the fire door where a hostage escaped from

Police officers were spotted climbing through the first floor window above the Lindt cafe to help evacuate those inside

Police officers were spotted climbing through the first floor window above the Lindt cafe to help evacuate those inside

Scores of police have surrounded the cafe in Martin Place amid claims the terrorists are also armed with a machete and may have explosives

Scores of police have surrounded the cafe in Martin Place amid claims the terrorists are also armed with a machete and may have explosives

Armed police have sealed off streets around the cafe and Martin Place station is shut

Armed police have sealed off streets around the cafe and Martin Place station is shut

Armed police have sealed off streets around the cafe and Martin Place station is shut

Police heavily armed with weapons have covering all corners of Martin Place 

Police heavily armed with weapons have covering all corners of Martin Place

Thousands of workers have been evacuated from the buildings in Martin Place and have been directed to another area

Thousands of workers have been evacuated from the buildings in Martin Place and have been directed to another area

People in the area encompassing Hunter, George, Elizabeth and Macquarie streets bordering Martin Place have been directed to remain indoors and away from open windows

People in the area encompassing Hunter, George, Elizabeth and Macquarie streets bordering Martin Place have been directed to remain indoors and away from open windows

Emergency services have shut down the area surrounding Martin Place as they continue the operation 

Emergency services have shut down the area surrounding Martin Place as they continue the operation

A Lindt cafe employee, who was due to start her shift just an hour after the Sydney hostage drama unfolded, said she was ‘shaking with fear’ when the gunman arrived.

Kathryn Chee, a chocolatier at the cafe said she meant to turn up early for her 11am shift because the business had been so busy in the lead up to Christmas.

‘It shakes me to the bone,’ Ms Chee told the ABC. She said her colleagues who are now hostages are ‘people who I hold like another family’.

‘It’s good I’m not there but I wish I could be there for them. That could be me standing there.’

Ms Chee said the young woman seen in footage holding an Islamic flag pressed against the window had ‘a look of sheer horror on her face’.

She says the woman is a thoughtful colleague who bakes treats for people’s birthdays.

Ms Chee said the male hostage seen in the TV footage is a funny guy who jokes with the customers.

Police have handcuffed a man 200m from the cafe with reports an officer has hit foot on what appears to be a small black handgun

Police have handcuffed a man 200m from the cafe with reports an officer has hit foot on what appears to be a small black handgun

Hostages: People could be seen with their hands pressed against the window of the Lindt cafe in Sydney

Hostages: People could be seen with their hands pressed against the window of the Lindt cafe in Sydney

Police have shut down Martin Place train station and office buildings in the area have been evacuated

Police have shut down Martin Place train station and office buildings in the area have been evacuated

Prime Minister Tony Abbott described the incident as ‘deeply concerning’ but said police were well equipped to respond

Officials have also evacuated the Opera House after reports of a suspicious device

Other areas of Sydney are feeling a heavy police presence as the siege at Martin Place continues

Other areas of Sydney are feeling a heavy police presence as the siege at Martin Place continues

Witnesses have described the chaotic scenes in Martin Place as the area was shut down and scores of police surrounded the building

Witnesses have described the chaotic scenes in Martin Place as the area was shut down and scores of police surrounded the building

Witnesses have described the chaotic scenes in Martin Place as the area was shut down and scores of police surrounded the building

The Seven Network newsroom, which is in a building opposite the cafe, was among the first to be evacuated, immediately followed by the nearby Westpac building and the Reserve Bank of Australia. Surrounding buildings soon followed or went into lockdown.

Even the city’s courts, including the venerable Downing Centre building, were sealed for the day, with police quickly vacating the areas.

Rosemary Healion, who works at Frederick Jordan Chambers, told Daily Mail Australia on Monday morning that ‘a couple hundred’ of her colleagues were inside at the time of the attack.

‘My colleagues are still in there. They’re trying to get them out now,’ Ms Healion told Daily Mail Australia.

Ms Healion said her office was on the ground floor, the same one as Lindt and they had been pushed behind the office’s reception area.

‘I’m so so worried as you would be. I was about to walk into the cafe. I get coffee there all the time.’

Window cleaner, David Wilson, managed to get a birds-eye-view of police swarming into Martin Place as he and a colleague cleaned the windows of a building across from Lindt.

‘We were looking around and there were cops running around and guns drawn. Some people came out, they looked like just coffee drinkers and that was about all we saw,’ Mr Wilson said, adding that his colleague’s first response was to get out his phone and start filming.

Rodrigo Neryt was arriving at Channel Seven for his first day of work experience when he heard screaming out the front of the cafe.

‘I was at the corner when everything started. I saw people yelling and screaming and two police cars arriving at the scene. I saw what looked like a black ISIS flag and they were holding it up’.

Armed police evacuated office staff next to the Lindt cafe on Monday afternoon

Armed police evacuated office staff next to the Lindt cafe on Monday afternoon

Police helped direct employees who were in lockdown in a building near the cafe under siege

Police helped direct employees who were in lockdown in a building near the cafe under siege

Police in white jumpsuits were helping people climb from the offices on the level above the Lindt cafe

Women help an elderly lady as they are evacuated by NSW Police from Martin Place

Women help an elderly lady as they are evacuated by NSW Police from Martin Place

Three women were pictured rushing through Philip Street past armed police as they fled Martin Place

Three women were pictured rushing through Philip Street past armed police as they fled Martin Place

It is unclear how many people are involved in the siege in a Lindt cafe in Martin Place but people could be seen with their hands pressed against the windows (second window)

It is unclear how many people are involved in the siege in a Lindt cafe in Martin Place but people could be seen with their hands pressed against the windows (second window)

At least two gunmen are involved in the siege but dozens of armed police have sealed off the streets surrounding the site

At least two gunmen are involved in the siege but dozens of armed police have sealed off the streets surrounding the site

WHAT IS THE SHAHADA FLAG?

Held up to a window by terrified hostages, a black flag covered in white Arabic was the first sign that the Martin Place siege could be linked to extremist Islam.

Witnesses initially believed that it was the standard of ISIS. However, close examination revealed it was in fact the Shahada flag, bearing the words ‘There is no god but Allah, Muhammad is the Messenger of Allah’

It is used by the extremist group, Jabhat al Nusra, which is fighting the Assad government in Syria.

But it has meaning for all Muslims, in that the Shahada is the Islamic Creed, one of the Five Pillars of Islam, which is recited by Muslims when they pray.

The flag displayed at the Lindt cafe

The flag displayed at the Lindt cafe

John Edwards works across the road from the cafe on the ninth floor of 53 Martin Place.

He said every floor of the building had been cleared about 11.15am.

‘We were evacuated out of the building from the basement,’ Mr Edwards told Daily Mail Australia.

‘All we were told by security was to get out.’

Lindt Australia issued a statement about the siege on its Facebook page.

‘We are deeply concerned over this serious incident and our thoughts and prayers are with the staff and customers involved and all their friends and families,’ they said.

Earlier this year, it was reported that Martin Place was the planned location of a terror plot. It was alleged in September that Omarjan Azari, the 22-year-old Sydney man arrested on terrorism charges, was planning a public beheading there.

The alleged terror plot, mentioned in a conversation between now deceased Australian terrorism recruiter in Syria, Mohammad Ali Barylei and Azari, involved selecting a member of the public at random, beheading them and then covering their body in a flag.

The whole incident was going to be filmed, and then used as propaganda for the Islamic State cause. Federal prosecutors said the alleged terror plot was ‘clearly designed to shock, horror and terrify the community’

Police Prosecutor Michael Allnutt said that Azari had made a threat which involved a ‘random selection of persons to execute’ during a telephone conversation with Baryalei.

Azari was arrested on September 18 and charged with preparing for an act of terrorism.

He is due in court this week for a bail application.

Thousands of office workers have relocated from Martin Place to Sydney's Hyde Park

Thousands of office workers have relocated from Martin Place to Sydney’s Hyde Park

Patients from the nearby Sydney Hospital patients were also evacuated alongside office workers

Patients from the nearby Sydney Hospital patients were also evacuated alongside office workers

Police are guarding the area in Hyde Park where people are congregating after evacuating 

Police are guarding the area in Hyde Park where people are congregating after evacuating

People evacuated from offices in Martin Place have been told to congregate in Hyde Park

People evacuated from offices in Martin Place have been told to congregate in Hyde Park

Martin Place is one of Sydney's busiest streets and is at the centre of the CBD

Martin Place is one of Sydney’s busiest streets and is at the centre of the CBD

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2873855/Gunman-takes-hostages-cafe-Sydney.html

Lindt Chocolat Cafe hostage drama in Martin Place, Sydney

December 16, 2014 – 3:01AM

Daniel Fallon

Siege hostages ‘our number one priority’

“We are doing all we can to set you free” is the message from the Premier and Police Commissioner to those held hostage.

1:24am: The man who is holding more than a dozen people hostage and placed Sydney’s CBD into lockdown is no stranger to the NSW police or the judiciary.

Self-described cleric, Man Haron Monis, 50, first came to attention of police when he penned poisonous letters to the family of dead Australian soldiers.

You can read the full story on Man Haron Monis here.

SIege gunman: Man Haron Monis.SIege gunman: Man Haron Monis. Photo: Nick Ralston

1:21am: As we enter day two of the hostage drama at Martin Place, we have kicked off a new live article for our readers. We’ll be switching off this live blog, and our reporters will be keeping you informed in our new blog.

You can keep up to date with all our coverage throughout Tuesday here. 

12:37am: The hostage siege at Lindt Cafe in Martin Place has been given prominence on the front pages of newspapers in the United States where there is great sensitivity to any terrorist-related attacks. The siege in Sydney follows ‘the lone-wolf’ attack on Canada’s war memorial and parliament in Ottawa by an Islamic State sympathiser.

12:12am: Police continue to keep watch and maintain their positions outside the Lindt Chocolate Cafe.

A NSW Tactical Operations Group police officer maintains his position at the scene in Martin Place, Sydney.A NSW Tactical Operations Group police officer maintains his position at the scene in Martin Place, Sydney. Photo: Andrew Meares

11:54pm yesterday:

Muslim leaders brace for backlash

A coalition of Muslim groups has issued a statement expressing their “utter shock and horror” over the siege at Martin Place and “urging everyone to stay calm”.

“We reject any attempt to take the innocent life of any human being, or to instil fear and terror into their hearts,” the statement says.

Read the full story by Anne Davies and Tim Elliott here: Muslim leaders brace for backlash

11:48pm yesterday:

Overreaction from fear is a measure of a terrorist’s success

Peter Hartcher comments on the siege that has captured media attention around the world:

“Why do political activists turn to terrorism? Australia gave the world a lesson today.

They turn to terrorism to win attention, to cause fear, and to use that fear to produce an overreaction. That overreaction is the measure of their success.”

Read the full story here: Overreaction from fear is a measure of a terrorist’s success

11:28pm yesterday: Deputy Commissioner Catherine Burn has commended the public for its patience during the ongoing operation.

“You, the community, made our job much easier than it could have been,” Deputy Commissioner Burn said.

“We only hope that co-operation and understanding continues tomorrow as we work to bring about a peaceful resolution to this situation.”

Bus services will run according to regular schedules, although some routes will be diverted around the affected area.

Train services will operate normally although Martin Place station remains closed.

People intending to travel to the Sydney CBD, away from the cordoned off area, are advised to go ahead with their plans.

Those affected by the operation are advised to contact their employers, monitor media reports and seek advice via the NSW Police website and social media platforms.

NSW Police Deputy Commissioner Catherine Burn has commended members of the public for the cooperation they have shown police during the siege in Martin Place.NSW Police Deputy Commissioner Catherine Burn has commended members of the public for the cooperation they have shown police during the siege in Martin Place. Photo: Les Smith

11:16pm yesterday Daniel Fallon:

Public urged to go about its business as usual: police

Police are urging the public to go about their business as usual tomorrow.

Officers will continue to maintain a perimeter around a cafe at the corner of Martin Place and Elizabeth streets overnight where a man is holding a number of hostages.

Traffic and Highway Patrol police have cordoned-off parts of Hunter, Macquarie, King and Elizabeth streets.

  • Elizabeth Street between Hunter and King Streets – closed to all traffic
  • Elizabeth Street – northbound between Market and King Street – closed to all traffic
  • Phillip Street – between King and Hunter Streets – closed to all traffic
  • King Street – between Elizabeth and Phillip Streets – closed to all traffic
  • Macquarie Street – between St James Road and Hunter Street – closed to all traffic

10:50pm yesterday: Elly Chen, one of the employees who fled the Lindt Cafe at about 5pm on Monday, was a talented student and athlete, according to her social media accounts.

Friends and relatives flooded her Facebook page with messages of relief that she had made it from the building.

A waitress, believed to be Elly Chen, flees Lindt cafe on Monday afternoon.A waitress, believed to be Elly Chen, flees Lindt cafe on Monday afternoon. Photo: Jason Reed/Reuters

10:21pm yesterday: The hostages inside the cafe have now been there for more than 12 hours.

Here is a timeline of events from earlier in the day.

9.44am: Man seen entering Lindt Cafe, carrying blue sports bag with gun inside.

9.45am: Police called to scene.

9:50am: Police clear area and cordon off Martin Place.

10am: Cafe staff and customers pressed against windows with hands raised.

10:02am: Hostages forced to hold up flag with Islamic script.

10:45am: Sydney Opera House evacuated.

11:20am: Prime Minister Tony Abbott announces national security committee of cabinet convened for briefings.

About 1pm: Talkback host Ray Hadley claims to have spoken to a hostage who spoke under instruction of a gunman.

1:53pm: Premier Mike Baird says “we are being tested in Sydney today”.

1:58pm: NSW Police Commissioner Andrew Scipione says “at least one” armed offender is holding an undisclosed number of hostages.

3:35pm: Three people – one staff member and two others – seen running from cafe.

4:04pm: NSW Deputy Commissioner Catherine Burn says the number of hostages is fewer than 30

4:59pm: Two female employees of Lindt run from cafe.

8:20pm: Premier Baird and Police Commissioner Scipione foreshadow extension of hostage crisis into Tuesday. Scipione says the Lindt Cafe is the only building in the city police are now interested in.

Martin Place Siege exclusion zoneMartin Place Siege exclusion zone Photo: NSW government

10:11pm yesterday: This is a map of the exclusion zone around Martin Place in Sydney’s central business district, distributed by the NSW Government.

Premier Mike Baird has requested those who work inside the zone stay at home tomorrow.

10:06pm yesterday: Here is the Herald’s editorial on today’s siege, running online and in tomorrow’s newspaper.

The next test is to ensure we see this sad event for what it is – and what it is not. While there were a number of instances on Monday when Sydneysiders and the media jumped to conclusions about the link between this event and  other incidents around the city, in most cases people were rightfully reluctant to jump to conclusions about the motivations of the gunman or the extent of his plans.

Nonetheless, a temptation lingers in the community to catastrophise about such criminal behaviour; to believe that because we have endured one siege from at least one deranged individual, we are at risk of many more. Rationally, that is highly unlikely.

9:58pm yesterday:

A recap on the siege in Martin Place

  • Hours after five hostages escaped from the Lindt cafe, one of the remaining women switched off the lights inside.
  • Premier Mike Baird has asked Sydneysiders to go about their day as usual on Tuesday
  • There is an exclusion zone near the cafe, bordered by Pitt, Elizabeth, Hunter and King Streets.
  • NSW Police have activated Task Force Pioneer, which they use in terrorism related incidents.
  • A coalition of Muslim groups has expressed their shock and horror at the siege. They have urged calm.
  • Sydneysiders have united under the hashtag #illridewithyou offering company to Muslims wearing religious garments as they travel in the city.

Suzanna Gratia Hupp explains meaning of 2nd Amendment!

“Before a standing army can rule, the people must be disarmed; as they are in almost every kingdom in Europe. The supreme power in America cannot enforce unjust laws by the sword; because the whole body of the people are armed….”- Noah Webster, An Examination of the Leading Principles of the Federal Constitution, 1787

On October 16, 1991, Hennard drove his 1987 Ford Ranger pickup truck through the front window of a Luby’s Cafeteria at 1705 East Central Texas Expressway in Killeen, yelled “This is what Bell County has done to me!”, then opened fire on the restaurant’s patrons and staff with a Glock 17 pistol and later a Ruger P89. About 80 people were in the restaurant at the time. He stalked, shot, and killed 23 people and wounded another 20 before committing suicide. During the shooting, he approached Suzanna Gratia Hupp and her parents. Hupp had actually brought a handgun to the Luby’s Cafeteria that day, but had left it in her vehicle due to the laws in force at the time, forbidding citizens from carrying firearms. According to her later testimony in favor of Missouri’s HB-1720 bill[1] and in general, after she realized that her firearm was not in her purse, but “a hundred feet away in [her] car”, her father charged at Hennard in an attempt to subdue him, only to be gunned down; a short time later, her mother was also shot and killed. (Hupp later expressed regret for abiding by the law in question by leaving her firearm in her car, rather than keeping it on her person. One patron, Tommy Vaughn, threw himself through a plate-glass window to allow others to escape. Hennard allowed a mother and her four-year-old child to leave. He reloaded several times and still had ammunition remaining when he committed suicide by shooting himself in the head after being cornered and wounded by police.

Reacting to the massacre, in 1995 the Texas Legislature passed a shall-issue gun law allowing Texas citizens with the required permit to carry concealed weapons. The law had been campaigned for by Suzanna Hupp, who was present at the Luby’s massacre and both of whose parents were shot and killed. Hupp testified across the country in support of concealed-handgun laws, and was elected to the Texas House of Representatives in 1996. The law was signed by then-Governor George W. Bush and became part of a broad movement to allow U.S. citizens to easily obtain permits to carry concealed weapons.

  • Map: Where Is ‘Open Carry’ Legal?

    • By RANIMOLLA

    As people on both sides of the debate regarding open carry—the practice of carrying firearms in plain view—have been turning up the heat, more companies are being forced to take a side.

    Gun-rights advocates see the practice as a way to normalize gun ownership and deter crime, while gun-control activists believe carrying guns in stores and restaurants is disruptive to the public and encourages violence.

    Recently, TargetStarbucks and Chipotle have asked their patrons not to bring their guns. After petitions by gun-control groups such as Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America, Kroger said it would uphold local and state laws in the 34 states it operates.

    Carrying a firearm in a concealed manner is legal in all states, but open carry has more restrictions, especially for handguns. Though federal law doesn’t restrict the open carrying of handguns in public, several states—including California, Florida, Illinois, New York, South Carolina and Texas—ban the practice, according to the Law Center to Prevent Gun Violence. Thirteen states require a special permit or license to open carry. The remaining 31 states don’t require one. The laws are different for long guns, which are commonly associated with hunting.

    In a Thursday, Jan. 12, 2012 photo, Rick Ector carries his Smith and Wesson 9mm as he prepares to pump gas in Detroit. Ector is pushing to make Detroit an “open carry” city and organizes public dinners and picnics where each legally licensed attendee wears a handgun. (AP Photo/Carlos Osorio)

    Why is open carry causing so much of a stir when concealed carry is so widespread?
    “Concealed carry—you don’t know who’s doing it and it doesn’t cause as much concern as open carry,” said Laura Cutilletta, senior staff attorney at the Law Center to Prevent Gun Violence. “One is a danger you know, and one is a danger you don’t know.”
    According to Chris W. Cox, executive director of the NRA’s Institute for Legislative Action,”The National Rifle Association strongly supports conceal carry and open carry, and we will continue to lead the charge to protect and expand the right to self defense for law abiding Americans throughout the country.”

  • http://blogs.wsj.com/numbers/map-where-is-open-carry-legal-1715/

The Pronk Pops Show Podcasts Portfolio

Listen To Pronk Pops Podcast or Download Show 383-388

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The Democratic Party War on The Central Intelligence Agency Will Lead To Blow-back and Payback When CIA Agents Reveal What They Were Really Doing in Benghazi — Shipping Arms To Syrian Rebels Including Al-Qaeda — Impeachable Offenses — The Genie Is Out of The Bottle and The CIA Knows Where The Bodies Are Buried — Do The Ends Ever Justify The Means? — Remembering September 11, 2001 and 2012 –Videos

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The Pronk Pops Show Podcasts

Pronk Pops Show 386: December 10, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 385: December 9, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 384: December 8, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 383: December 5, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 382: December 4, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 381: December 3, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 380: December 1, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 379: November 26, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 378: November 25, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 377: November 24, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 376: November 21, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 375: November 20, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 374: November 19, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 373: November 18, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 372: November 17, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 371: November 14, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 370: November 13, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 369: November 12, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 368: November 11, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 367: November 10, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 366: November 7, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 365: November 6, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 364: November 5, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 363: November 4, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 362: November 3, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 361: October 31, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 360: October 30, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 359: October 29, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 358: October 28, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 357: October 27, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 356: October 24, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 355: October 23, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 354: October 22, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 353: October 21, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 352: October 20, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 351: October 17, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 350: October 16, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 349: October 15, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 348: October 14, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 347: October 13, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 346: October 9, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 345: October 8, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 344: October 6, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 343: October 3, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 342: October 2, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 341: October 1, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 340: September 30, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 339: September 29, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 338: September 26, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 337: September 25, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 336: September 24, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 335: September 23 2014

Pronk Pops Show 334: September 22 2014

Pronk Pops Show 333: September 19 2014

Pronk Pops Show 332: September 18 2014

Pronk Pops Show 331: September 17, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 330: September 16, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 329: September 15, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 328: September 12, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 327: September 11, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 326: September 10, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 325: September 9, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 324: September 8, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 323: September 5, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 322: September 4, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 321: September 3, 2014

 Story 1: The Democratic Party War on The Central Intelligence Agency Will Lead To Blow-back and Payback When CIA Agents Reveal What They Were Really Doing in Benghazi — Shipping Arms To Syrian Rebels Including Al-Qaeda — Impeachable Offenses — The Genie Is Out of The Bottle and The CIA Knows Where The Bodies Are Buried — Do The Ends Ever Justify The Means? — Remembering September 11, 2001 and 2012 –Videos

obama-arming-al-qaeda-syria-battaile-politics-13526874571

CIA Special Operator

Covert Action

“The term “covert action” means an activity or activities of the United States Government to influence political, economic, or military conditions abroad, where it is intended that the role of the United States Government will not be apparent or acknowledged publicly, but does not include . . . (2) traditional . . . military activities or routine support to such activities.

People Falling from the World Trade Center

9/11 – The Falling Man

Breaking News December 2014 Dick Cheney CIA interrogation techniques I’d do it again in a minute

Cheney Accuses Chuck Todd of Taking a Cheap Shot

Dick Cheney Says CIA Torture Report ‘ FULL OF CRAP ‘ (Full VIDEO)

John Brennan CIA Director Responds To Torture Report in Press Conference ( FULL VIDEO)

Conversation: Putting the CIA Interrogation Report Into Context

Former CIA Officer Defends Torture Programme He Designed

Ex-CIA defends CIA torture (09Dec14)

CIA Headquarters in Langley, Virginia: Changes to Interrogation Policy for the United States (2009)

Paul on Benghazi: Hillary Was ‘Most Eager’ to Get Arms From Libya to Syria

CNN CIA Pressuring Agents With Knowledge Of Benghazi To Keep Silent ‘You Jeopardize Your Family’

Obama Approves CIA Covert Actions In Libya 3/30/11 – CNN

 

Treason Exposed! Obama Used Benghazi Attack to Cover Up Arms Shipments to Muslim Brotherhood

What roles Turkey play in Syria’s insurgency?

NY Times says CIA supplying arms to Syria insurgents

WW3 in ACTION: US LAUNCH covert OPERATION to ARM militants in Syria with HEAVY WEAPONS!

Retired Lt. Gen. Jerry Boykin suspects US Was Running Guns To Syrian Rebels Via Benghazi

Retired Army Lt. Gen. William G. Boykin—who is the former commander of the U.S. Special Forces Command, the former deputy undersecretary of defense for intelligence and who, in the 1990s, worked with the CIA—told CNSNews.com in a video interview last week that he believes it is a reasonable supposition that the U.S. was supporting or planning to support the Syrian rebels via Benghazi, Libya.

Trey Gowdy Opening Statement Benghazi Hearing 9.17.14

Robert David Steele: Former CIA Spy Benghazi Was CIA Operation

The Benghazi Select Committee: Many Questions Remain Unanswered

G. Edward Griffin – The Collectivist Conspiracy

G. Edward Griffin- On Individualism v Collectivism #1

G. Edward Griffin- On Individualism v Collectivism #2

CNBC: BENGAHZI IS NOT ABOUT LIBYA! “It’s An NSC Operation Moving Arms & Fighters Into Syria”

Ron Paul on Covert U.S. Support of Terrorist Insurrection in Syria

June 27, 2012 – Ron Paul warns of the ongoing U.S. government’s covert support of the terrorist insurrection against the Syrian government and offers a short history of the quagmires and blowback that U.S. interventions abroad have brought about.

Glenn Beck – Benghazi: Truth coming out

Soros, Obama & ‘Responsibility to Protect’

END WAR: Scheuer On CIA In Libya To Arm Islamist And May Be US Ground Invasion In Another Arab State

The truth about SYRIA by Westerns

Syrian Rebels Capture City Near Jordanian Border – Libya Vs Syria Where’s The Obama Admin?

Gaffney on Benghazi » Not Just About Cover Up « About Administration Embracing Muslim Brotherhood

ADM Lyons, “Muslim Brotherhood has penetrated every government agency”

ADM “Ace” Lyons, Former Commander in Chief of the U.S. Pacific Fleet, the largest single military command in the world, states, “The Muslim Brotherhood has penetrated every level of the US government.”

End the Coverup: Rep. Frank Wolf Urges New Benghazi Investigation

Rep. Frank Wolf called a press conference outside the capitol to discuss his sponsorship of H. Res. 36, which would create a special congressional committee to investigate the failures that contributed to the deadly jihadist attack in Benghazi, Libya last year. He was joined by Family Research Council’s Lt. Gen. Jerry Boykin, former Deputy Undersecretary of Defense for Intelligence and former member of Delta Force. Boykin represented Special Operations Speaks, a group of ex-special forces operators who came together to write a letter to Members of Congress, urging them to commit to getting to the bottom of what happened in Benghazi, and to end the administration’s cover-up. Finally, the Center for Security Policy’s Frank Gaffney spoke about the implications of the attack in Libya on America’s national security and foreign policy in the Middle East/North Africa region.

Write a letter to your congressman at Http://www.endthecoverup.com

Gen. Jerry Boykin: “Get accountability and get the truth out” on Benghazi

Rand Paul: I Believe Part of Cause for Benghazi Attack Was Gun-Running Operation Going

Syrian rebel group Al-Nusra allies itself to al-Qaeda

Nusra Front and al-Qaeda in Iraq are joining forces to bring back the Caliphate.

A Caliphate Is Coming – GBTV

Obama Hiding Arms Shipments To Syrian Jihadists

Lebanon seizes 150 tons of Libyan arms en route to Syrian rebels

Treason: Benghazi Revelations Could Sink Obama

Benghazi-Gate: Connection between CIA and al-Qaeda in Libya and Syria, with Turkey’s Help

Benghazi-Gate: Connection between CIA and al-Qaeda in Libya and Syria, with Turkey’s Help

Syrian Rebel Group Joins Branch Of Al Qaeda

West Intervenes to Stop Islamist Rebels in Mali but Supports Them to Destroy Syria

Presidential Finding

A presidential finding is an executive directive issued by the head of the executive branch of a government, similar to the more well-known executive order. The term is mostly used by the United States Government, and in other countries may be identified by different terms. Such findings and other executive decrees are usually protocols which have evolved through the course of government and not typically established by law.

Use and history in the United States

“US President Barack Obama has signed a secret order allowing the CIA and other American agencies to support rebels seeking to overthrow the Assad regime, a US government source told Reuters. Obama reportedly gave the order, known as an intelligence “finding”, earlier this year. The presidential finding also provides for US collaboration with a secret command center operated by Turkey and its allies. The full extent of the assistance the “finding” allows the CIA to give the Syrian rebels is unclear. It is also unknown precisely when Obama signed the order.” The report of Obama’s authorization for covert rebel support comes amidst continued fighting between Syrian government troops and rebels over control of Aleppo, the country’s economic capital. Thousands of people have fled the city, while the government and rebels continue to release conflicting reports on the extent of their control over the city. Asia Times Online correspondent Pepe Escobar told RT that the leak’s timing was intended to distort the true nature of Washington’s covert operations on the ground in Syria.

“This intelligence finding signed by Obama – that’s the code for a secret order – this was signed six months ago. So the fact that Reuters has only been allowed now to report about it proves that there have been high deliberations in Washington: ‘should we let people know about what they already know?’”

“In fact, the Washington Post two weeks ago had already reported about it, and when the CIA wants to leak something in the US, they usually go to the Washington Post. The CIA and Mossad, on the ground [in Syria], side by side working with the Qataris, the Turks, the Saudis and a swarm of jihadis coming from everywhere, but especially from across the border in Iraq,” he argues.

Escobar says the leak was intended to make it look as though Washington was leading the Syrian campaign from behind the scenes, when in fact the US is “leading from the front lines alongside al-Qaeda-style Jihadists, Qatari intelligence, and Turkish logistics.” [1]

The first specific use of presidential findings was precipitated by the Agricultural Trade Development and Assistance Act of 1954, in which the findings indicated that certain conditions of that act had be satisfied and, therefore, sales of agricultural commodities could proceed. In their use under this act, such findings were published in the Federal Register and the CFR Title 3 compilations. In contrast, presidential findings in their modern use are not published in these or other governmental publications.

Current use of the presidential finding stems from the so-called Hughes-Ryan amendment to the Foreign Assistance Act of 1974, which prohibited the expenditure of appropriated funds by or on behalf of the Central Intelligence Agency for intelligence activities “unless and until the President finds that each such operation is important to the national security of the United States and reports, in a timely fashion, a description and scope of such operation to the appropriate committees of Congress” (section 662). This was intended to ensure that clear responsibility for such action was attributable to the President and that Congress was always made aware of such activities. Due to the sensitivity of their content, presidential findings are almost always classified.

The most recent change to exercise of findings occurred in the Intelligence Authorization Act of 1991, which introduced increased flexibility in the reporting requirement: findings are to be “reported to the intelligence committees as soon as possible” after being approved “and before the initiation of the covert action authorized by the finding.” As such, presidential findings are one of the primary means through which the intelligence committees exercise their oversight of the government’s intelligence operations.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Presidential_finding

Covert Action: Title 10, Title 50, and the Chain of Command

By Joseph B. Berger III

Abstract

America champions the rule of law and must maintain that moral stance in its international dealings and retain the clarity of an unambiguous chain of command. The Abbottabad raid on Osama bin Laden’s compound highlighted the dangers and vagaries of departing from the traditional military chain of command. The Secretary of Defense was taken out of the chain and the CID Director was inserted. In contrast, the rescue of a U.S. citizen in Somalia was carried out secretively but not covertly by joint forces under military command, maintaining individual Servicemember protections that may be forfeit in the gray zone of questionable legality. National authorities should reconsider the rejection of the 9/11 Commission’s recommendation that DOD be responsible for paramilitary covert actions, and when DOD acts in that capacity, the operation should be carried out as a traditional military operation with a military chain of command.

Recent media reports have Pentagon officials considering “putting elite special operations troops under CIA [Central Intelligence Agency] control in Afghanistan after 2014, just as they were during last year’s raid on [Osama bin Laden’s] compound.”1 This shell game would allow Afghan and U.S. officials to deny the presence of American troops in Afghanistan because once “assigned to CIA control, even temporarily, they become spies.”2 Nearly simultaneously, Department of Defense (DOD) leaders were warned to “be vigilant in ensuring military personnel are not inappropriately utilized” in performing “new, expanding, or existing missions,” ensuring the force is aligned against strategic choices “supported by rigorous analysis.”3 Placing Servicemembers—uniformed members of the Army, Navy, Marine Corps, and Air Force—under CIA control demands such rigorous analysis. The raid on bin Laden’s compound provides a framework.

n his May 1, 2011, televised address, President Barack Obama reported “to the American people and to the world that the United States ha[d] conducted an operation that killed Osama bin Laden.”4 President Obama initially detailed little beyond noting that he had directed “the[n] Director of the CIA [Leon Panetta], to make the killing or capture of bin Laden the top priority of our war against al Qaeda” and that the operation, carried out by a “small team of Americans” was done “at [his] direction [as President].” In the following days, senior executive branch officials garrulously provided explicit details, from the now-iconic White House Situation Room photograph to intricate diagrams of the Abbottabad compound and the assault force’s composition. Most noteworthy was Panetta’s unequivocal assertion the raid was a covert action:

Since this was what’s called a “Title 50” operation, which is a covert operation, and it comes directly from the president of the United States who made the decision to conduct this operation in a covert way, that direction goes to me. And then, I am, you know, the person who then commands the mission. But having said that, I have to tell you that the real commander was Admiral [William] McRaven because he was on site, and he was actually in charge of the military operation that went in and got bin Laden.5

Despite his self-effacing trumpeting of Vice Admiral McRaven’s role, Panetta’s comment highlights that critical confusion exists among even the most senior U.S. leaders about the chain of command and the appropriate classification of such operations.

Openly describing the raid as both a “covert operation” and “military operation,” Panetta asserted he was the “commander,” describing a chain of “command” that went from the President to Panetta to McRaven. Panetta’s public comments are problematic, as is describing a chain of command that excludes the Secretary of Defense and purports to route command authority through the CIA director. Title 50 is clear:

The term “covert action” means an activity or activities of the United States Government to influence political, economic, or military conditions abroad, where it is intended that the role of the United States Government will not be apparent or acknowledged publicly, but does not include . . . (2) traditional . . . military activities or routine support to such activities.6

The administration did the opposite, making patently clear the raid’s nature and, in exhaustive detail, the precise role of the United States. Instead of categorizing it as a covert action under the director’s “command,” the President could have conducted the raid as a covert action under the Secretary of Defense instead of the CIA director, or under his own constitutional authority as Commander in Chief and the Secretary’s statutory authorities, classifying it as a traditional military activity and excepting it from the statute’s coverage. As a traditional military activity, there would have been no legal limits on subsequent public discussion. Alternatively, conducting the raid as a covert action within a military chain of command removes the issues the director raised in asserting command authority over Servicemembers. The decisionmaking process remains shrouded, but conducting a raid into a sovereign country targeting a nonstate actor using military personnel and equipment under the “command” of the CIA director and classifying it as a covert action raises significant legal and policy questions. Such decisions threaten the legitimacy and moral authority of future U.S. actions and demand a rigorous examination of those associated risks.

The Abbottabad raid illustrates the post-9/11 security environment convergence of DOD military and CIA intelligence operations.7 While dead terrorists attest to this arrangement’s efficacy, many directly challenge the legal and policy framework behind current DOD-CIA cooperation. The discourse focuses largely on distinctions between Title 10 and Title 50 and the legal basis for conducting apparently overlapping military and intelligence operations beyond the battlefields of Iraq and Afghanistan. Notwithstanding the potentially misleadingly simple labels of Title 10 and Title 50, these complex issues lack clear answers. Many argue the legacy structure ill equips the President to effectively combat the threat. But tweaking that structure carries risk. Thus, correctly classifying and structuring our actions within that framework are critical. The law of war is designed to protect our nation’s military forces when they are engaged in traditional military activities under a military chain of command; spies conducting intelligence activities under executive authority have no such protections. This distinction rests on a constitutional, statutory, treaty, and doctrinal framework underpinning the military concept of command authority.

U.S. power relies on moral and legal legitimacy. Exclusive state control over the legitimate use of armed force remains viable domestically and internationally only where exercised within an accepted framework. Thus, employing DOD forces in a nontraditional manner entails significant risk. The policy implications of classification and structure are neither semantic nor inconsequential, and must be understood by senior decisionmakers; likewise, individual Servicemembers must understand the practical effects. A rigorous risk analysis should therefore inform any deviation, however permissible under domestic law.

This article focuses on the risks associated with both using military personnel to conduct kinetic covert action and using them without a military chain of command. Those risks inform the recommendation to change practice, but not the law. Specifically, the author rejects melding distinct operational military (Title 10) and intelligence (Title 50) authorities into the often mentioned Title 60. Properly classifying actions—either under the statute as a covert action or exempted from the statute as a traditional military activity—ensures the correct command structure is in place.8 Ultimately, the analysis argues for revisiting the previously rejected 9/11 Commission recommendation to place paramilitary covert action under DOD control.9

This article first outlines current and likely future threats and then explains the critical terms of art related to covert action and, against that lingua franca, examines why kinetic military operations should be either classified as traditional military activities or kept under a military chain of command. Analyzing the relevant constitutional, statutory, treaty, and doctrinal elements of command, this article illustrates that a raid conducted like the Abbottabad raid, while legally permissible, is best conducted as a traditional military activity.

Changed Character of the Battlefield and Enemy

In the decade since 9/11, DOD and CIA elements have become “operationally synthesi[zed].”10 A senior intelligence official recently noted that “the two proud groups of American secret warriors had been ‘deconflicted and basically integrated’—finally—10 years after 9/11.”11 The direct outgrowth is the increased reliance on special operations forces (SOF) to achieve national objectives against a “nimble and determined” enemy who “cannot be underestimated.”12 While the United States fought wars on geographically defined battlefields in Iraq and Afghanistan and beyond, the underlying legal structure remained constant. In the wars’ background, leaders, advisors, academics, and others argued about the structure of the appropriate legal and policy framework. Post-Iraq and post-Afghanistan, the United States must still address other threats, including those that al Qaeda and their associated forces present.

The threats have migrated beyond a battlefield defined by sovereign nations’ borders. When asked recently in “how many countries we are currently engaged in a shooting war,” Secretary of Defense Panetta laughed, responding, “That’s a good question. I have to stop and think about that . . . we’re going after al Qaeda wherever they’re at. . . clearly, we’re confronting al Qaeda in Pakistan, Yemen, Somalia, [and] North Africa.”13 The unresolved legal and policy challenges will likely increase in complexity on this geographically unconstrained battlefield. Remaining rooted in enduring principles is critical. DOD conduct of kinetic operations beyond traditionally recognized battlefields raises significant legal and policy concerns, especially where the U.S. Government conducts them without knowledge or consent of the host nation, as apparently happened with the Abbottabad operation.14 Properly categorizing and structuring these operations, while vexing for policymakers and their lawyers, carries much greater stakes for the Servicemembers executing them.

The Need for a Lingua Franca

Colloquial usage refers to DOD authorities as Title 10, and the CIA’s as Title 50. That is technically inaccurate and misleading since DOD routinely operates under both Titles 10 and 50.15 Instead of Title 10, this article uses the term military operations; instead of Title 50, it uses CIA operations or the more specific covert action. All three terms require clarification.

CIA operations are all CIA activities except covert action. Covert action is the narrow, statutory subset of Presidentially approved, CIA-led activities.16 Unfortunately, colloquially, covert action “is frequently used to describe any activity the government wants concealed from the public.”17 That common usage ignores the fact that a traditional military activity, notwithstanding how “secretly” it is executed, is by statute not a covert action. DOD defines a covert operation as one “planned and executed as to conceal the identity of or permit plausible denial by the sponsor,” where “emphasis is placed on concealment of the identity of the sponsor rather than on concealment of the operation.”18 While not in conflict with the statutory definition, the DOD definition is incomplete; it fails to recognize the President’s role and ignores the exception of traditional military activities.19 Practitioners should use the statutory definition.

The concept of clandestine operations further blurs colloquial and doctrinal imprecision.20 DOD activities “may be both covert and clandestine . . . focus[ing] equally on operational considerations and intelligencerelated activities.”21 Appropriately, DOD officials assert that, absent a Presidential covert action finding, they “conduct only ‘clandestine activities.’” 22 They characterize clandestine activities as those “conducted in secret but which constitute ‘passive’ intelligence information gathering.”23 Interchanging the terms and mixing them with intelligence functions is inaccurate and dangerous; practitioners must draw clear distinctions. The sponsorship of a covert action is hidden, not the act itself. The specific acts of the U.S. Government in influencing a foreign election (for example, posters, marches, election results, and so forth) would be visible, but not the covert sponsorship of those acts. For clandestine acts, the act itself (for example, intercepting a phone call) must remain hidden. The CIA and DOD can conduct clandestine operations without Presidential approval, whereas covert action triggers statutory requirements for a Presidential finding and congressional notification. Some have argued DOD’s “activities should be limited to clandestine” activities, as this would ensure military personnel are protected by the law of war,24 a critical point examined in detail later.

Military operations are DOD activities conducted under Title 10, including activities intended or likely to involve kinetic action. Pursuant to an order issued by the Secretary of Defense, they are conducted by military personnel under DOD command and in accordance with the law of war. They specifically exclude DOD’s intelligence activities (for example, the Joint Military Intelligence Program); like the CIA’s, those intelligence activities are conducted pursuant to Title 50.

Statutorily assigned responsibility helps distinguish between CIA operations and military operations. Although the President can designate which department, agency, or entity of the U.S. Government will participate in the covert action, the statute implicitly tasks the CIA as the default lead agency: “Any employee . . . of the [U.S.] Government other than the [CIA] directed to participate in any way in a covert action shall be subject either to the policies and regulations of the [CIA], or to written policies or regulations adopted . . . to govern such participation.25

Executive order 12333 (EO 12333) makes that default tasking explicit:

The Director of the [CIA] shall . . . conduct covert action activities approved by the President. No agency except the [CIA] (or the Armed Forces of the United States in time of war declared by the Congress or during any period covered by a report from the President to the Congress consistent with the War Powers Resolution. . . .) may conduct any covert action activity unless the President determines that another agency is more likely to achieve a particular objective.26

The statute, coupled with EO 12333, unequivocally places all covert action squarely under the CIA’s control; the narrow exception for DOD is currently inapplicable. While the Executive order expressly tasks
the director with conducting covert action, it does not task the Secretary of Defense.27
Default CIA primacy and the absence of statutory specificity in defining traditional military activities create risk when DOD conducts kinetic covert action.

The Unique Nature of Traditional Military Activities

One practitioner described traditional military activities’ exclusion from covert action’s definition as “the exception that swallows the rule.”28 But while DOD-CIA operational convergence blurs the issue, the exception need not swallow the rule. Functionally, anything done by a uniformed member of a nation’s armed forces is a “military” activity; the nuanced requirement is to understand which are traditional military activities. That definition can be consequential, functional, or historical—or a combination of some or all three approaches. The statute’s legislative history provides the best clarification, noting the conferees intended that:

“Traditional military activities” include activities by military personnel under the direction and control of a United States military commander (whether or not the U.S. sponsorship of such activities is apparent or later to be acknowledged) . . . where the fact of the U.S. role in the overall operation is apparent or to be acknowledged publicly.

In this regard, the conferees intend to draw a line between activities that are and are not under the direction and control of the military commander. Activities that are not under the direction and control of a military commander should not be considered as “traditional military activities.”29

That nonstatutory definition frames the follow-on analysis. That functional and historical definition turns on who is in charge.

Activities under the “direction and control of a military commander” meet the requirement to be excepted from the statute; those with a different command and control arrangement are not traditional military activities. “Command” is unique to the military and the definition appears to draw a bright line rule; but the CIA director blurred the line by asserting “command” over a DOD element.30 The confusion questions the necessary nature and scope of leadership by a “military commander.” What level or rank of command is required? Must the chain of command from that military commander run directly back to the Commander in Chief solely through military channels? Must it run through the Secretary of Defense? Can it run through the director if there is a military commander below him? Given Goldwater-Nichols,31 what about the geographic combatant commander? In short, what does the wiring diagram look like? These questions highlight three baseline possibilities as depicted in the figure below.

Chain of Command Possibilities

chani_of_command_possibilites

Part 1A of the figure reflects DOD’s Title 10 chain of command, illustrating the broadest historical, functional, and consequential definition of traditional military activity. The clear chain is rooted in the uniquely military concept of command and the President’s constitutionally defined role as Commander in Chief. It clarifies congressional oversight responsibility, results in unquestioned jurisdiction, and forms the basis of the strongest legal argument for combatant immunity. Part 1B represents the President as chief executive, exercising oversight and control of the CIA under Title 50. This hierarchy lacks the legal command authority exercised over military personnel in 1A. Finally, part 1C represents the paradox created by the covert action statute’s attempts to overlap the parallel structures of 1A and 1B; it is often described as Title 60.

The current Congressional Authorization for the Use of Military Force allows the President to “use all necessary and appropriate force” to prevent “future acts of international terrorism against the United States.”32 This statutory grant of power creates the paradox: here, where the Senate vote was 98 to 0 and the House vote was 420 to 1, the President’s executive authority (as Commander in Chief and chief executive) is greatest,33 the exercise of those powers blurs the clear lines of parts 1A and 1B of the illustration. Merging the two, although permissible under the covert action statute, creates risk.

Consequently, questions about the nature and structure of the chain of command demand rigorous scrutiny and cannot be left to ad hoc arrangements. Defining military command determines whether or not the activity is a traditional military activity and therefore not under the ambit of the statute. The criticality of this categorization is twofold: it is the core of the state’s monopoly on the legitimate use of force and cloaks Servicemembers in the legal armor of combatant immunity.

Chain of Command, or Control?

Since George Washington’s Presidency, the Secretary of War (later Defense) has served without interruption as a Cabinet member. The President’s role, enshrined in the Constitution, is clear: “The President shall be Commander-in-Chief of the Army and Navy of the United States.”34 With the Secretary of Defense, this embodies the Founders’ vision of civilian control of the military. The Secretary of Defense’s appointment requires the “Advice and Consent of the Senate.”35 While the President can relieve him and replace him with an inferior officer (that is, the Deputy Secretary of Defense), Senateconfirmed executive branch officials are not fungible. He cannot interchange officials individually confirmed to fulfill separate and unique duties—something James Madison warned about in Federalist 51.36

Longstanding U.S. practice is an unbroken chain of command from the President, through his Secretary of Defense, to a subordinate uniformed commander. Even GoldwaterNichols’s37 streamlining the military warfighting chain of command to run from the President through the Secretary and directly to the unified combatant commanders did not alter that fundamental practice.38 Combatant commanders simply replace Service chiefs. The civilian leader between the Commander in Chief and his senior uniformed commander remains unchanged—a specific individual confirmed by the Senate to execute statutory duties. The inviolate concept of civilian control of the military and the Senate’s Advice and Consent requirement make assertion of any executive authority to “trade out” duties between Cabinet officials implausible. The President can place military personnel under CIA control, but control is not command.

Command is the inherently military “privilege” that is “exercised by virtue of office and the special assignment of members of the US Armed Forces holding military grade.”39 In fact, under the Army regulation, “A civilian, other than the President as Commander-in-Chief . . . may not exercise command.”40 Goldwater-Nichols allows the President to exercise command through his Secretary of Defense. Command rests on constitutional and statutory authority (including the Uniform Code of Military Justice) and the customs and practices of the Service. Removing military personnel from that hierarchy— illustrated in part 1C of the figure—changes their fundamental nature. This is Panetta’s assertion: he was in “command” 41 of the raid on Osama bin Laden’s compound.

itles 10 and 50 define the specific duties of the Secretary of Defense42 and Title 50 the CIA director’s.43 The duties are neither identical nor interchangeable. In Title 50, Congress explicitly states that DOD shall function “under the direction, authority, and control of the Secretary of Defense” in order to “provide for their unified direction under civilian control.”44 Placing the Services under the Secretary of Defense is necessary to “provide for the establishment of [a] clear and direct line of command.”45 Congress is equally clear in Title 10, granting the Secretary complete authority over DOD: “there shall be a Secretary of Defense, who is the head of the [Department], appointed . . . by the President, by and with the advice and consent of the Senate.”46 The statute allows the Secretary to “perform any of his functions or duties, or [to] exercise any of his powers through” other persons, but only persons from within DOD.47

Two caveats exist to the Secretary of Defense’s “authority, direction, and control”: the Secretary’s authority is “subject to the direction of the President” and the 1947 National Security Act.48 The latter covers DOD personnel within the National Foreign Intelligence Program (NFIP). The former appears to be an exception that swallows the rule. But even in empowering the President to limit his Secretary’s authority, Congress did not specifically authorize any change to the fundamental command of military forces. Likewise, in defining the director’s limited authorities over military personnel, Congress maintained the military command structure over military operations.

Congress neither allows the director command nor control of DOD operational assets, nor did it grant the President a caveat like that with the Secretary of Defense’s authority.49 Although the director’s duties include the transfer of “personnel within the NFIP,” which includes DOD personnel, such transfers are limited to personnel within DOD’s Joint Military Intelligence Program (JMIP).50 SOF are not part of the JMIP. When DOD does transfer any JMIP personnel to the CIA, the director must “promptly” report that transfer to both the intelligence oversight and Armed Services Committees of both houses.51 Transfers between other executive branch elements trigger no such requirements. Congress only intended CIA control over DOD intelligence assets and was clearly concerned about even that. Goldwater-Nichols reinforces this analysis.

Goldwater-Nichols codifies geographic combatant commanders’ nearly inviolable command authority: “all forces operating within the geographic area assigned to a unified combatant command shall be assigned to, and under” his command.52 Two exceptions supplant that authority. Servicemembers assigned to U.S. Embassies (for example, the Defense Attaché) are under the Ambassador’s control and the Defense Intelligence Agency’s command. For those Servicemembers, diplomatic protections have replaced law of war protections, but the Secretary of Defense remains in the chain of command. The second exception, carved from GoldwaterNichols’s “unless otherwise directed by the President” language, covers DOD participation in covert action.53 Goldwater-Nichols’s silence on the Secretary of Defense remaining in the chain of command indicates Congress did not intend to change the default hierarchy. DOD recognized that point by defining combatant command as being “under a single commander” and running “through the Secretary of Defense.”54 All these say nothing about covert action.

The statute and EO 12333 put the director “in charge” of the conduct of covert actions.55 CIA “ownership” means any non-CIA employee supporting a covert action “belongs” to the CIA. However, the CIA lacks DOD’s legal command structure and no CIA official possesses the command authority inherent in an officer’s commission.56 The CIA can only be in charge, not in command. The director cannot give a lawful order that would be legally binding on Servicemembers. The Constitution unequivocally grants Congress the authority to “make Rules for the Government and Regulation of the land and naval Forces.”57 Those rules, the Uniform Code of Military Justice, never contemplated CIA personnel exercising command authority over Servicemembers. The CIA’s ownership of covert action is limited. Exclusive CIA control fails elsewhere; the statute authorizes the President to task “departments, agencies, or entities”58 to conduct covert action. The implication is that DOD can conduct a covert action exclusively. EO 12333 specifically envisions that.59 Placing DOD elements under CIA control to conduct a kinetic operation is arguably unnecessary.

This chain of command is constitutionally enshrined, codified, and ratified through longstanding practice; even if Congress had explicitly authorized the President to reroute it, doing so creates risk. First, it removes the law of war’s protections upon which Servicemembers conducting kinetic operations rely. In such an event, Servicemembers must be made aware they are no longer protected. Second, as a state practice, realigning military personnel under a nonmilitary framework to conduct kinetic activities creates precedential risk for U.S. allies. Such a decision must be fully informed at all levels.

Chain of Command: International Law Context

National armies engaged against each other have, throughout modern history, been cloaked in the law of war’s combatant
immunity. Absent that immunity, a captured individual is subject to criminal prosecution for his wartime conduct. His deliberately targeting and killing others become nonmilitary and therefore criminal. In World War II’s aftermath, widespread acceptance of what constituted an “army” rendered a definition unnecessary: “Individuals composing the national forces” automatically enjoyed combatant immunity.60 However, for those outside their nation’s military hierarchy, specificity was necessary. The Third Geneva Convention grants prisoner of war status—which confers combatant immunity—to those who are subordinate to a responsible commander, wear a fixed, distinctive insignia recognizable at a distance, carry their arms openly, and conduct their operations in accordance with the laws and customs of war.61

The command requirement stems from the “dual principle of responsible command and its corollary command responsibility.”62 The Hague Convention required that a commander be “responsible for his subordinates.”63 The Geneva Convention recognized “no part of [an] army . . . is not subordinated to a military commander,” applying this “from the Commander-in-Chief down to the common soldier.”64 The later protocols “could not conceive” of a hierarchy “without the persons who make up the command structure being familiar with the law applicable in armed conflict.”65 This is DOD’s unchallenged area of expertise.66 Like Congress’s definition of traditional military activity,67 the commentary’s definition, when coupled with the requirements for those not considered part of the Nation’s army, is the parallel to Servicemembers conducting kinetic covert action under CIA control. Combatant immunity necessitates prisoner of war status; for those not acting as part of the army, that status requires a military chain of command. Replacing the Secretary of Defense with the CIA director eviscerates this.

U.S. history records a fundamental belief in the rules for combatant immunity.68 First, to codify these requirements, the 1863 Lieber Code defined prisoner of war as including “all soldiers.”69 The code noted noncompliance with the rules meant no combatant immunity: spies were “punishable with death by hanging by the neck.”70 “Armed prowlers . . . who steal within the lines of the hostile army for the purpose of . . . killing . . . are not entitled to the privileges of the prisoner of war.”71 The code’s noteworthy purpose was not to regulate conduct between nations, but for application in a non-international armed conflict and maintaining the moral high ground necessary to facilitate reconciliation with and reintegration of the confederate states.

The law of war’s efficacy rests on the principle of reciprocity. One party provides the protections to its prisoners believing and hoping its enemies will respond in kind. Commendable German and U.S. treatment of each other’s prisoners during World War II exemplifies this principle; Japanese treatment of U.S prisoners at Bataan proves its imperfections. Regardless, maintaining the moral high ground is critical. Had Abbottabad gone poorly, the United States would have asserted that U.S. personnel in Pakistani custody were entitled to the high standards of prisoner of war treatment. That would have required those Soldiers and Sailors to be in compliance with the law of war. The nonmilitary chain of command may have been problematic in making that assertion.

Conclusion

“From its inception . . . America has venerated the rule of law.”72 Traditional military activities occur against a rich fabric of domestic and international law. Covert action, while uniquely codified, presents multiple dilemmas. Although permissible under U.S. domestic law, covert action is generally illegal in the target country.73 Again, maintaining the moral high ground is critical.

Although inimical to covert action’s fundamental premise, overt executive branch commentary following the Abbottabad raid highlighted the legal risk associated with policy decisions. Placing Servicemembers under CIA command threatens to undermine the protections they rely on when conducting kinetic military operations, especially where the activity is more accurately classified as a traditional military activity.

The risk can—and should—be mitigated by first properly classifying the activity. Classifying a traditional military activity as anything else undermines the very categorization and its inherent law of war protections. DOD can undoubtedly conduct secretive (that is, clandestine and/or unacknowledged) actions as traditional military activities and enjoy the full body of the law of war’s protections. The current framework neither envisions nor facilitates placing Servicemembers under CIA control and preserving the command relationships necessary to cloak them in combatant immunity. The Abbottabad raid utilized this risk-laden approach.

This is not to assert that conducting the raid as a covert action was illegal. There were three likely outcomes: success, failure,
or something in between (that is, aborting the mission). Neither success nor failure required covert action’s plausible deniability. The United States immediately publicly acknowledged killing of “public enemy number one”; regardless, the crashed helicopter disclosed the U.S. role. A noncatastrophic driven decision to abort (for example, Pakistani detection of violation of their sovereign airspace) provides the sole outcome where the United States would likely have hidden behind the statute’s shield, disavowing all. The covert action classification provided an insurance policy, yet the cost of allowing that policy to “lapse” through post-success disclosures undermines the plausibility of such “insurance” in the future.

Compare the Abbottabad covert action with the recent rescue of a U.S. citizen in Somalia, conducted secretively, but not covertly, by “a small number of joint combatequipped U.S. forces.”74 This comparison illustrates that such activities can be conducted as traditional military activities, maintaining secrecy and preserving individual Servicemember protections. The need for continued distinction between covert action and traditional military activities and, where covert, the need for DOD-conducted operations to maintain a military chain of command, drive these recommendations. The United States should revisit the rejection of the 9/11 Commission’s recommendation that DOD assume responsibility for paramilitary covert operations.75

Where DOD participation is necessary and primary, the operation should be conducted as an unacknowledged traditional military activity. If the risk analysis drives a decision to conduct the operation as a covert action, the President should maintain the military chain of command. This ensures Servicemembers going in harm’s way have every protection the Nation they serve can provide them—or a clearer understanding of the additional risks they are assuming on behalf
of their Nation. JFQ

http://www.ndu.edu/press/covert-action.html

The Largest Covert Operation in CIA History
By Chalmers Johnson
The History News Network

Monday 09 June 2003

The Central Intelligence Agency has an almost unblemished record of screwing up every “secret” armed intervention it ever undertook. From the overthrow of the Iranian government in 1953 through the Bay of Pigs, the failed attempts to assassinate Fidel Castro of Cuba and Patrice Lumumba of the Republic of Congo, the Phoenix Program in Vietnam, the “secret war” in Laos, aid to the Greek colonels who seized power in 1967, the 1973 killing of Salvador Allende in Chile and Ronald Reagan’s Iran-contra war against Nicaragua, there is not a single instance in which the agency’s activities did not prove acutely embarrassing to the United States. The CIA continues to get away with this primarily because its budget and operations have always been secret and Congress is normally too indifferent to its constitutional functions to rein in a rogue bureaucracy. Therefore the tale of a purported CIA success story should be of some interest.

According to the author of the newly released Charlie Wilson’s War, the exception to CIA incompetence was the arming between 1979 and 1988 of thousands of Afghan moujahedeen (“freedom fighters”). The agency flooded Afghanistan with an astonishing array of extremely dangerous weapons and “unapologetically mov[ed] to equip and train cadres of high tech holy warriors in the art of waging a war of urban terror against a modern superpower,” in this case, the USSR.

The author of this glowing account, George Crile, is a veteran producer for the CBS television news show “60 Minutes” and an exuberant Tom Clancy-type enthusiast for the Afghan caper. He argues that the U.S. clandestine involvement in Afghanistan was “the largest and most successful CIA operation in history” and “the one morally unambiguous crusade of our time.” He adds that “there was nothing so romantic and exciting as this war against the Evil Empire.” Crile’s sole measure of success is the number of Soviet soldiers killed (about 15,000), which undermined Soviet morale and contributed to the disintegration of the Soviet Union in the period from 1989 to 1991. That’s the successful part.

However, he never mentions that the “tens of thousands of fanatical Muslim fundamentalists” the CIA armed are some of the same people who in 1996 killed 19 American airmen at Dhahran, Saudi Arabia; bombed our embassies in Kenya and Tanzania in 1998; blew a hole in the side of the U.S. destroyer Cole in Aden harbor in 2000; and on Sept. 11, 2001, flew hijacked airliners into New York’s World Trade Center and the Pentagon. Today, the world awaits what is almost certain to happen soon at some airport — a terrorist firing a U.S. Stinger low-level surface-to-air missile (manufactured at one time by General Dynamics in Rancho Cucamonga) into an American jumbo jet. The CIA supplied thousands of them to the moujahedeen and trained them to be experts in their use. If the CIA’s activities in Afghanistan are a “success story,” then Enron should be considered a model of corporate behavior.

Nonetheless, Crile’s account is important, if appalling, precisely because it details how a ruthless ignoramus congressman and a high-ranking CIA thug managed to hijack American foreign policy. From 1973 to 1996, Charlie Wilson represented the 2nd District of Texas in the U.S. House of Representatives. His constituency was in the heart of the East Texas Bible Belt and was the long-held fiefdom of his fellow Democrat, Martin Dies, the first chairman of the House Un-American Affairs Committee. Wilson is 6 feet, 4 inches tall and “handsome, with one of those classic outdoor faces that tobacco companies bet millions on.” He graduated from the Naval Academy in 1956, eighth from the bottom of his class and with more demerits than any other cadet in Annapolis history.

After serving in the Texas Legislature, he arrived in Washington in 1973 and quickly became known as “Good Time Charlie,” “the biggest playboy in Congress.” He hired only good-looking women for his staff and escorted “a parade of beauty queens to White House parties.” Even Crile, who featured Wilson many times on “60 Minutes” and obviously admires him, describes him as “a seemingly corrupt, cocaine snorting, scandal prone womanizer who the CIA was convinced could only get the Agency into terrible trouble if it permitted him to become involved in any way in its operations.”

Wilson’s partner in getting the CIA to arm the moujahedeen was Gust Avrakotos, the son of working-class Greek immigrants from the steel workers’ town of Aliquippa, Pa. Only in 1960 did the CIA begin to recruit officers for the Directorate of Operations from among what it called “new Americans,” meaning such ethnic groups as Chinese, Japanese, Latinos and Greek Americans. Until then, it had followed its British model and taken only Ivy League sons of the Eastern Establishment. Avrakotos joined the CIA in 1961 and came to nurture a hatred of the bluebloods, or “cake eaters,” as he called them, who discriminated against him. After “spook school” at Camp Peary, next door to Jamestown, Va., he was posted to Athens, where, as a Greek speaker, he remained until 1978.

During Avrakotos’s time in Greece, the CIA was instrumental in destroying Greek freedom and helping to turn the country into probably the single most anti-American democracy on Earth today. Incredibly, Crile describes this as follows: “On April 21, 1967, he [Avrakotos] got one of those breaks that can make a career. A military junta seized power in Athens that day and suspended democratic and constitutional government.” Avrakotos became the CIA’s chief liaison with the Greek colonels. After the fall of the colonels’ brutally fascist regime, the 17 November terrorist organization assassinated the CIA’s Athens station chief, Richard Welch, on Dec. 23, 1975, and “Gust came to be vilified in the Greek radical press as the sinister force responsible for most of the country’s many ills.” He left the country in 1978 but could not get another decent assignment — he tried for Helsinki — because the head of the European Division regarded him as simply too uncouth to send to any of its capitals. He sat around Langley for several years without work until he was recruited by John McGaffin, head of the Afghan program. “If it’s really true that you have nothing to do,” McGaffin said, “why not come upstairs? We’re killing Russians.”

Wilson was the moneybags and sparkplug of this pair; Avrakotos was a street fighter who relished giving Kalashnikovs and Stingers to the tribesmen in Afghanistan. Wilson was the more complex of the two, and Crile argues that his “Good Time Charlie” image was actually a cover for a Barry Goldwater kind of hyper-patriotism. But Wilson was also a liberal on the proposed Equal Rights Amendment and a close friend of the late Congresswoman Barbara Jordan (D-Texas), and his sister Sharon became chairwoman of the board of Planned Parenthood.

As a boy, Wilson was fascinated by World War II and developed an almost childlike belief that he possessed a “special destiny” to “kill bad guys” and help underdogs prevail over their enemies. When he entered Congress, just at the time of the Yom Kippur War, he became a passionate supporter of Israel. After he traveled to Israel, the American Israel Public Affairs Committee began to steer large amounts of money from all over the country to him and to cultivate him as “one of Israel’s most important Congressional champions: a non-Jew with no Jewish constituents.” Jewish members of Congress also rallied to put Wilson on the all-powerful Appropriations Committee in order to guarantee Israel’s annual $3-billion subsidy. His own Texas delegation opposed his appointment.

Wilson was not discriminating in his largess. He also became a supporter of Anastasio “Tacho” Somoza, the West Point graduate and dictator of Nicaragua who in 1979 was swept away by popular fury. Before that happened, President Carter tried to cut the $3.1-million annual U.S. aid package to Nicaragua, but Wilson, declaring Somoza to be “America’s oldest anti-Communist ally in Central America,” opposed the president and prevailed.
During Wilson’s long tenure on the House Appropriations Committee, one of its subcommittee chairmen, Clarence D. “Doc” Long, used to have a sign mounted over his desk: “Them that has the gold makes the rules.” Wilson advanced rapidly on this most powerful of congressional committees. He was first appointed to the foreign operations subcommittee, which doles out foreign aid. He then did a big favor for then-Speaker Thomas P. “Tip” O’Neill Jr. (D-Mass.). The chairman of the Defense Appropriations subcommittee at the time, Rep. John Murtha (D-Pa.), had been caught in the FBI’s ABSCAM sting operation in which an agent disguised as a Saudi sheik offered members of Congress large cash bribes. O’Neill put Wilson on the Ethics Committee to save Murtha, which he did. In return, O’Neill assigned Wilson to the defense appropriations subcommittee and made him a life member of the governing board of the John F. Kennedy Performing Arts Center, where he delighted in taking his young dates. Wilson soon discovered that all of the CIA’s budget and 40 percent of the Pentagon’s budget is “black,” hidden from the public and even from Congress. As a member of the defense subcommittee, he could arrange to have virtually any amount of money added to whatever black project he supported. So long as Wilson did favors for other members on the subcommittee, such as supporting defense projects in their districts, they would never object to his private obsessions.

About this time, Wilson came under the influence of a remarkable, rabidly conservative Houston woman in her mid-40s, Joanne Herring. They later fell in love, although they never married. She had a reputation among the rich of the River Oaks section of Houston as a collector of powerful men, a social lioness and hostess to her fellow members of the John Birch Society. She counted among her friends Ferdinand and Imelda Marcos, dictator and first lady of the Philippines, and Yaqub Khan, Pakistan’s ambassador to Washington, D.C., who got Herring named as Pakistan’s honorary consul for Houston.

In July 1977, the head of Pakistan’s army, Mohammed Zia-ul-Haq, seized power and declared martial law, and in 1979, he hanged Zulfikar Ali Bhutto, the president who had promoted him. In retaliation, Carter cut off U.S. aid to Pakistan. In 1980, Herring went to Islamabad and was so entranced by Zia and his support for the Afghan freedom fighters that on her return to the United States, she encouraged Wilson to go to Pakistan. There he met Zia, learned about the Afghan moujahedeen and became a convert to the cause. Once Reagan replaced Carter, Wilson was able to restore Zia’s aid money and added several millions to the CIA’s funds for secretly arming the Afghan guerrillas, each dollar of which the Saudi government secretly matched.

Although Wilson romanticized the mountain warriors of Afghanistan, the struggle was never as uneven as it seemed. Pakistan provided the fighters with sanctuary, training and arms and even sent its own officers into Afghanistan as advisors on military operations. Saudi Arabia served as the fighters’ banker, providing hundred of millions with no strings attached. Several governments, including those of Egypt, China and Israel, secretly supplied arms. And the insurgency enjoyed the backing of the United States through the CIA.

Wilson’s and the CIA’s greatest preoccupation was supplying the Afghans with something effective against the Soviets’ most feared weapon, the Mi-24 Hind helicopter gunship. The Red Army used it to slaughter innumerable moujahedeen as well as to shoot up Afghan villages. Wilson favored the Oerlikon antiaircraft gun made in Switzerland (it was later charged that he was on the take from the Zurich-based arms manufacturer). Avrakotos opposed it because it was too heavy for guerrillas to move easily, but he could not openly stand in Wilson’s way. After months of controversy, the Joint Chiefs of Staff finally dropped their objections to supplying the American Stinger, President Reagan signed off on it, and the “silver bullet” was on its way. The Stinger had never before been used in combat. It proved to be murderous against the Hinds, and Soviet President Mikhail S. Gorbachev decided to cut his losses and get out altogether. In Wilson’s postwar tour of Afghanistan, moujahedeen fighters surrounded him and triumphantly fired their missiles for his benefit. They also gave him as a souvenir the stock from the first Stinger to shoot down a Hind gunship.

The CIA “bluebloods” fired Avrakotos in the summer of 1986, and he retired to Rome. Wilson became chairman of the Intelligence Oversight Committee, at which time he wrote to his CIA friends, “Well, gentlemen, the fox is in the hen house. Do whatever you like.” After retiring from Congress in 1996, he became a lobbyist for Pakistan under a contract that paid him $30,000 a month. Meanwhile, the United States lost interest in Afghanistan, which descended into a civil war that the Taliban ultimately won. In the autumn of 2001, the United States returned in force after Al Qaeda retaliated against its former weapon supplier by attacking New York and Washington. The president of the United States went around asking, “Why do they hate us?”

Crile knows a lot about these matters and presents them in a dramatic manner. There are, however, one or two items that he appears unaware of or is suppressing. For the CIA legally to carry out a covert action, the president must authorize a document called a finding. Crile repeatedly says that Carter signed such a finding ordering the CIA to provide covert backing to the moujahedeen after the Soviet Union invaded Afghanistan on Dec. 24, 1979. The truth of the matter is that Carter signed the finding on July 3, 1979, six months before the Soviet invasion, and he did so on the advice of his national security advisor, Zbigniew Brzezinski, in order to try to provoke a Russian incursion. Brzezinski has confirmed this sequence of events in an interview with a French newspaper, and former CIA Director Robert M. Gates says so explicitly in his 1996 memoirs. It may surprise Charlie Wilson to learn that his heroic moujahedeen were manipulated by Washington like so much cannon fodder in order to give the USSR its own Vietnam. The moujahedeen did the job, but as subsequent events have made clear, they may not be grateful to the United States.

Mr. Johnson is the author of Blowback: The Costs and Consequences of American Empire and The Sorrows of Empire: Militarism, Secrecy and the End of the Republic, to be published in January by Metropolitan Books.

http://archive.truthout.org/article/the-largest-covert-operation-cia-history

Background Articles and Videos

CIA Covert Action in the Cold War: Iran, Jamaica, Chile, Cuba, Afghanistan, Libya, Latin America

The CIA Controls Al Qaeda

Triple Cross Bin Laden’s Spy In America (Full Documentary)

 

Covert Action – Operation Field Goal

A CIA special operations officer pursues a tip from an intercepted al-Qaeda transmission and ventures alone into enemy territory – where he’ll need all his training to survive.

CIA Covert Operations and U.S. Interventions Since World War II Full documentary

Col. L Fletcher Prouty: Secret Team – The Formation & Purpose of The NSC – PT 1 of 4

Col. L Fletcher Prouty: The Secret Team – The CIA’s Origins Of Covert Operations – PT 2 of 4

Col. L Fletcher Prouty: The Secret Team – Covert Operations & Their Consequences – PT 3 of 4

Col. L Fletcher Prouty: Secret Team – Conclusion – PT 4 of 4

Muslim Brotherhood Subversion: 12 Key Players in Obama/Bush Administrations

C.I.A. Agents in Libya Aid Airstrikes and Meet Rebels

By MARK MAZZETTI and ERIC SCHMITT

WASHINGTON — The Central Intelligence Agency has inserted clandestine operatives into Libya to gather intelligence for military airstrikes and to contact and vet the beleaguered rebels battling Col. Muammar el-Qaddafi’s forces, according to American officials.

While President Obama has insisted that no American military ground troops participate in the Libyan campaign, small groups of C.I.A. operatives have been working in Libya for several weeks as part of a shadow force of Westerners that the Obama administration hopes can help bleed Colonel Qaddafi’s military, the officials said.

In addition to the C.I.A. presence, composed of an unknown number of Americans who had worked at the spy agency’s station in Tripoli and others who arrived more recently, current and former British officials said that dozens of British special forces and MI6 intelligence officers are working inside Libya. The British operatives have been directing airstrikes from British jets and gathering intelligence about the whereabouts of Libyan government tank columns, artillery pieces and missile installations, the officials said.

American officials hope that similar information gathered by American intelligence officers — including the location of Colonel Qaddafi’s munitions depots and the clusters of government troops inside towns — might help weaken Libya’s military enough to encourage defections within its ranks.

In addition, the American spies are meeting with rebels to try to fill in gaps in understanding who their leaders are and the allegiances of the groups opposed to Colonel Qaddafi, said United States government officials, speaking on the condition of anonymity because of the classified nature of the activities.  American officials cautioned, though, that the Western operatives were not directing the actions of rebel forces.

A C.I.A. spokesman declined to comment.

The United States and its allies have been scrambling to gather detailed information on the location and abilities of Libyan infantry and armored forces that normally takes months of painstaking analysis.

“We didn’t have great data,” Gen. Carter F. Ham, who handed over control of the Libya mission to NATO on Wednesday, said in an e-mail last week.   “Libya hasn’t been a country we focused on a lot over past few years.”

Several weeks ago, President Obama signed a secret finding authorizing the C.I.A. to provide arms and other support to Libyan rebels, American officials said Wednesday. But weapons have not yet been shipped into Libya, as Obama administration officials debate the effects of giving them to the rebel groups. The presidential finding was first reported by Reuters.

In a statement released Wednesday evening, Jay Carney, the White House press secretary, declined to comment “on intelligence matters,” but he said that no decision had yet been made to provide arms to the rebels.

Representative Mike Rogers, a Michigan Republican who leads the House Intelligence Committee, said Wednesday that he opposed arming the rebels. “We need to understand more about the opposition before I would support passing out guns and advanced weapons to them,” Mr. Rogers said in a statement.

Because the publicly stated goal of the Libyan campaign is not explicitly to overthrow Colonel Qaddafi’s government, the clandestine war now going on is significantly different from the Afghan campaign to drive the Taliban from power in 2001. Back then, American C.I.A. and Special Forces troops worked alongside Afghan militias, armed them and called in airstrikes that paved the rebel advances on strategically important cities like Kabul and Kandahar.

In recent weeks, the American military has been monitoring Libyan troops with U-2 spy planes and a high-altitude Global Hawk drone, as well as a special aircraft, JSTARS, that tracks the movements of large groups of troops.  Military officials said that the Air Force also has Predator drones, similar to those now operating in Afghanistan, in reserve.

Air Force RC-135 Rivet Joint eavesdropping planes intercept communications from Libyan commanders and troops and relay that information to the Global Hawk, which zooms in on the location of armored forces and determines rough coordinates. The Global Hawk sends the coordinates to analysts at a ground station, who pass the information to command centers for targeting. The command center beams the coordinates to an E-3 Sentry Awacs command-and-control plane, which in turn directs warplanes to their targets.

Lt. Gen. David A. Deptula, who recently retired as the Air Force’s top intelligence official, said that Libya’s flat desert terrain and clear weather have allowed warplanes with advanced sensors to hunt Libyan armored columns with relative ease, day or night, without the need for extensive direction from American troops on the ground.

But if government troops advance into or near cities in along the country’s eastern coast, which so far have been off-limits to coalition aircraft for fear of causing civilian casualties, General Deptula said that ground operatives would be particularly helpful in providing target coordinates or pointing them out to pilots with hand-held laser designators.

The C.I.A. and British intelligence services were intensely focused on Libya eight years ago, before and during the successful effort to get Colonel Qaddafi to give up his nuclear weapons program. He agreed to do so in the fall of 2003, and allowed C.I.A. and other American nuclear experts into the country to assess Libya’s equipment and bomb designs and to arrange for their transfer out of the country.

Once the weapons program was eliminated, a former American official said, intelligence agencies shifted their focus away from Libya. But as Colonel Qaddafi began his recent crackdown on the rebel groups, the American spy agencies have worked to rekindle ties to Libyan informants and to learn more about the country’s military leaders.

A former British government official who is briefed on current operations confirmed media reports that dozens of British Special Forces soldiers, from the elite Special Air Service and Special Boat Service units, are on the ground across Libya. The British soldiers have been particularly focused on finding the locations of Colonel Qaddafi’s Russian-made surface-to-air missiles.

A spokesman for Britain’s Ministry of Defense declined to comment, citing a policy not to discuss the operations of British Special Forces.

http://www.nytimes.com/2011/03/31/world/africa/31intel.html?_r=3&hp&

Military, CIA shun 9/11 panel on covert operations

Special-ops lead urged in report

By Bill Gertz The Washington Times

The U.S. military and the CIA failed to agree on implementing a key recommendation of the commission that investigated the 9/11 terrorist attacks: Give special-operations commandos the lead for all covert military action.

The 9/11 Commission ordered the shift in response to concerns that CIA covert action — a mainstay of the agency’s World War II predecessor, the Office of Strategic Services — had “atrophied.” The agency also had a “risk averse” approach to spying and semisecret military activities.

Former Navy Secretary John F. Lehman, a member of the panel, said a report card made public last week by the Bipartisan Policy Center didn’t address the failure to implement the covert action change because of the secrecy surrounding the issue.

“The situation has evolved far beyond where it was at the time of our report,” Mr. Lehman said, adding that the raid to kill Osama bin Laden “shows that they are now doing something right.”

Retired Army Lt. Gen. William “Gerry” Boykin, a former Delta Force commando and Pentagon intelligence policymaker during the George W. Bush administration, said that after the commission issued its recommendation in 2004, disagreements arose over bureaucratic turf, and the CIA and the U.S. Special Operations Command (SoCom) could not agree on how to implement it.

The military has expanded special operations forces in recent years. But critics complain that the Pentagon official in charge of the policies for their use is Michael G. Vickers, a former CIA official who comes from the agency’s risk-averse, anti-covert-action culture.

Military covert action involves training and equipping foreign military or paramilitary forces in semisecret activities where the U.S. role is hidden. Past programs included arming Cuban rebels for the ill-fated Bay of Pigs invasion, deploying direct-action hit teams in Vietnam, and the arming and training of anti-communist rebels in Latin America and anti-Soviet rebels in Afghanistan.

Since 2004, the CIA’s most successful covert military operation was the hunt for bin Laden and the raid to kill him in Pakistan on May 2 with Navy SEALs.

The CIA’s other successful covert military action is the war against al Qaeda and other terrorist groups using drone missile strikes in the Middle East and South Asia.

One setback was the suicide bombing by a double agent in December 2009 at a CIA covert base in Khost, Afghanistan, that killed seven agency officers.

The military’s most secret units and those involved in covert warfare are the Army’s Delta Force and the Naval Special Warfare Development Group, formerly SEAL Team 6.

CIA spokeswoman Marie Harf said the agency and the Pentagon have worked closely in the fight against al Qaeda, notably in the Abbottabad, Pakistan, operation against bin Laden.

“Our capabilities are complementary, not duplicative, and the success of those capabilities should speak for itself,” she said.

Gen. Boykin said a task force was set up to study the 9/11 recommendation, but it failed to define paramilitary covert action. “This was a fundamental question that no one could answer,” Gen. Boykin said.

If the commission meant training, SoCom already had the mission of working with surrogates. But “paramilitary” operations — activities that are militarylike but carried out by groups other than the military — automatically would become military if the function is passed to the Pentagon.

Gen. Boykin said that if the commission wanted to give responsibility for covert action to the Pentagon, the CIA was opposed, arguing that the change would hinder intelligence collection. The agency said its facilities and equipment were “dual-use” — for spying and paramilitary — and could not be transferred.

Gen. Boykin said the command was against duplicating the CIA’s training facilities, methods and equipment, because of high costs needed to “age” equipment and weapons for operations.

“Working from the assumption that the commission was not really sure what they were recommending, the study group determined that the capabilities already in SoCom were competent to train indigenous forces including using clandestine methodology,” he said.

“The agreement was that the CIA would support [special operations] as needed with facilities and other resources.”

Bureaucratic turf also played a role.

CIA did not want to lose anything since that would result in a reduction of resources as well as a loss of authority,” Gen. Boykin said.

However, special operations forces also “did not want the covert action mission because they saw it as something that would absorb huge amounts of time and resources and would be a distraction,” he said.

Former CIA officer Robert Baer, who was investigated by the Clinton administration during a covert action in northern Iraq, said he favors giving the mission to the military. “No matter what the bosses say, the CIA hates covert and paramilitary operations,” he said.

“The place is managed by liberal-arts majors who do a lot better operating on intuition and big-horizon stuff — like whether we’re winning or losing in Afghanistan,” Mr. Baer said. “But never ask it to run a bunch of Hmong tribesmen or disaffected Pashtuns and ever hope to win a war with them.”

Mr. Baer said the Pentagon is better tactically at making things work and has a larger pool of recruits with foreign-language skills.

“The problem is that presidents always reach for the CIA when they think they need a ‘silver bullet,’ like the Bay of Pigs,” he said. “The CIA inevitably fails, and then it gets blamed for the mess.”

Every covert action requires a presidential directive stating that the proposed action is in the country’s national interest. The procedure is often cumbersome and prone to public disclosure. Supporters of the change say military-led covert action would be more flexible and easier to approve.

Hiring former special operations forces at the CIA will not help the agency’s covert military capabilities, Mr. Baer said. “Outside military discipline, they just don’t perform up to their capabilities,” he said.

Mr. Baer said the covert program to supply Stinger anti-aircraft missiles to Afghan rebels in the 1980s was less a covert action success than a “logistics” plan to ship arms to the fighters in the field. “It was not a proper paramilitary campaign,” he said.

A Harvard University study several years ago quoted anti-covert-action officials at the CIA as opposing the Stinger operation because of fears it would trigger a war with the Soviet Union.

The 9/11 Commission report describes the CIA in 2001 as “institutionally averse to risk, with its capacity for covert action atrophied.”

It also says the CIA did not invest in developing “robust” paramilitary operations with U.S. personnel but instead relied on proxies trained and organized by CIA officers without military experience. “The results were unsatisfactory,” it says.

The 9/11 Commission said the CIA could continue clandestine and nonmilitary covert action, including propaganda and nonmilitary disruption.

“We believe, however, that one important area of responsibility should change,” the commission’s report says. “Lead responsibility for directing and executing paramilitary operations, whether clandestine or covert, should shift to the Defense Department.”

There, covert military action programs should be consolidated and placed under Special Operations Command, it says.

“Whether the price is measured in either money or people, the United States cannot afford to build two separate capabilities for carrying out secret military operations, secretly operating standoff missiles, and secretly training foreign military or paramilitary forces,” the report says.

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Profiles in Hypocrisy — Democratic Obama Killing of Civilians By Drones OK — Republican Bush Torturing of Terrorists — Not OK — The Hypocrisy of The Political Elitist Establishment and Decline of The American Empire — Videos

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Pronk Pops Show 322: September 4, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 321: September 3, 2014

Story 1: Profiles in Hypocrisy — Democratic Obama Killing of Civilians By Drones OK — Republican Bush Torturing of Terrorists — Not OK — The Hypocrisy of The Political Elitist Establishment and Decline of The American Empire — Videos

pakistandronestrikesmap

U.S. military drones All-Totals-Dash12 Drones1 drones2_s640x543 dronewar_pak_771x574 Every-confirmed-US-drone-strike-in-Pakistan-Yemen-and-Somalia-recorded-by-the-Bureau-2002-20121 Five-years-of-drone-strikes1

George Carlin – Euphemisms

Live TV Footage of 9/11 (Second Plane hit, Collapse of Towers) World Trade Center Coverage

Obama on CIA torture report: ‘Terrible mistakes were made’

CIA interrogation techniques used after September 11 to be detailed in Senate report

CIA Spying on the Senate? (w/ Mark Mazzetti)

Ex-CIA Head Jose Rodriguez on Report Fallout: Obama Admin Prefers to Kill From Afar

hard_measures

Hard Measures, part 1

Hard Measures, part 2

VICE News Exclusive: The Architect of the CIA’s Enhanced Interrogation Program

Fox’s Hume: Senate Torture Report Made Same Mistake as Rolling Stone

Feinstein: CIA Report ‘Ugly Truth’ We Must Face

Senate report: CIA torture brutal, ineffective

Leahy Speaks On Release Of Senate’s Historic Report On Torture

Torture Report Details Long List Of America’s Brutal Crimes

CIA Torture Report Incomplete as Key Documents Remain Withheld

CIA Torture Report: US Intelligence Facilities Overseas

Morning Joe’s Debate on CIA Torture Program Was a Masterpiece of Deflection

AP Analysis: CIA Torture Report

Assessing the impact of the Senate’s CIA torture report

Fmr. CIA Chief Explains the ‘Major Problems’ of Senate Dems Report on Interrogations after 9/11

ABC, NBC Hype ‘Explosive’ ‘Torture’ Report; Omit Its Partisan Origin

Fmr. CIA Lawyer: Senate Interrogation Report ‘Unfair and Preposterous’

Former U.S. Senator Bob Graham explains the importance of redacted 28 pages in the Reports

What Is In The Redacted 28 Pages Of The 9/11 Commission Report?

Secrets Of The 28 Page 9/11 Report Released

The Shocking Truth About Obama’s Drones

Obama’s secret drone war explained by Reuters’ David Rohde – Fast Forward

Richard Clarke – U.S. Drone Program Under Obama “Got Out of Hand”

Confirmed: Obama’s drone program killing civilians

Rise of the Drones [PBS NOVA]

drone pilot kills Afghani militants from Nevada control centre

Warfare by Remote (Part 1)

Warfare by Remote (Part 2)

Warfare by Remote (Part 3)

Predator Drones

Former Counterterrorism Czar Richard Clarke on Obama’s “Unproductive” Drone Program

George Carlin We Like War

Drone Wars Pakistan: Analysis

http://securitydata.newamerica.net/drones/pakistan/analysis

 

‘For me, and those in my chain of command, those deaths will haunt us as long as we live.’ And he added: ‘Before any strike is taken, there must be near-certainty that no civilians will be killed or injured – the highest standard we can set’.

~Barack Obama

Presidents Pakistan

 

Drone Warfare

More than 2,400 dead as Obama’s drone campaign marks five years

Obama de Souza April 2013

Obama has launched over 390 covert drone strikes in his first five years in office (Pete Souza/White House).

Five years ago, on January 23 2009, a CIA drone flattened a house in Pakistan’s tribal regions. It was the third day of Barack Obama’s presidency, and this was the new commander-in-chief’s first covert drone strike.

Initial reports said up to ten militants were killed, including foreign fighters and possibly a ‘high-value target’ – a successful first hit for the fledgling administration.

But reports of civilian casualties began to emerge. As later reports revealed, the strike was far from a success. At least nine civilians died, most of them from one family. There was one survivor, 14-year-old Fahim Qureshi, but with horrific injuries including shrapnel wounds in his stomach, a fractured skull and a lost eye, he was as much a victim as his dead relatives.

Ob1 - Fahim Qureshi - Vocativ GrabLater that day, the CIA attacked again – and levelled another house. It proved another mistake, this time one that killed between five and ten people, all civilians.

Obama was briefed on the civilian casualties almost immediately and was ‘understandably disturbed’, Newsweek reporter Daniel Klaidman later wrote. Three days earlier, in his inauguration address, Obama had told the world ‘that America is a friend of each nation, and every man, woman and child who seeks a future of peace and dignity.’

Fahim Qureshi, injured in the first Obama strike
(Vocativ/YouTube).

The Pakistani government also knew civilians had been killed in the strikes. A record of the strikes made by the local political administration and published by the Bureau last year listed nine civilians among the dead. But the government said nothing about this loss of life.

Yet despite this disastrous start the Obama administration markedly stepped up the use of drones. Since Obama’s inauguration in 2009, the CIA has launched 330 strikes on Pakistan – his predecessor, President George Bush, conducted 51 strikes in four years. And in Yemen, Obama has opened a new front in the secret drone war.

For all the Bureau’s drones data: Get the data – drone wars

Lethal strikes
Across Pakistan, Yemen and Somalia, the Obama administration has launched more than 390 drone strikes in the five years since the first attack that injured Qureshi – eight times as many as were launched in the entire Bush presidency. These strikes have killed more than 2,400 people, at least 273 of them reportedly civilians.

Although drone strikes under Obama’s presidency have killed nearly six times as many people as were killed under Bush, the casualty rate – the number of people killed on average in each strike – has dropped from eight to six under Obama. The civilian casualty rate has fallen too. Strikes during the Bush years killed nearly more than three civilians in each strike on average. This has halved under Obama (1.43 civilians per strike on average). In fact reported civilian casualties in Pakistan have fallen sharply since 2010, with no confirmed reports of civilian casualties in 2013.

The decline in civilian casualties could be because of reported improvements in drone and missile technology, rising tensions between Pakistan and the US over the drone campaign, and greater scrutiny of the covert drone campaign both at home and abroad.

Presidents Pakistan
Obama has sharply escalated the drone campaign in Pakistan.

The apparent change in targeting  is well demonstrated by comparing a strike carried out by the Bush administration in 2006 and one seven years later under Obama. On October 30 2006 at least 68 children were killed when CIA drones destroyed a madrassa – a religious school – in the Bajaur area of Pakistan’s tribal belt. The attack was reportedly targeting then-al Qaeda second-in-command Ayman al Zawahiri. He escaped. On November 21 last year, drones again targeted a madrassa, this time in Hangu, outside the tribal regions. As many as 80 students were sleeping in the building. But the strike destroyed a specific portion of the building – just one or two rooms – and killed between six and nine people.

In Yemen, however, civilians continue to die in US drone strikes. Last year saw the highest civilian casualty rate since Obama first hit the country in 2009.

In recent years drones have come to dominate Obama’s war in Yemen as much as in Pakistan.

Drones were not the first weapon the administration turned to when it started to attack the country. On December 17 2009 a US Navy submarine launched a cluster bomb-laden cruise missile at a suspected militant camp in al Majala, southern Yemen.

The missile slammed into a hamlet hitting one of the poorest tribes in Yemen. Shrapnel and fire left at least 41 civilians dead, including at least 21 children and 12 women – five of them were pregnant. A week earlier President Obama had been awardedthe Nobel Peace Prize. He used his acceptance speech to defend the use of force at times as ‘not only necessary but morally justified’. He warned that ‘negotiations cannot convince al Qaeda’s leaders to lay down their arms’.

Strikes in Pakistan are carried out by the CIA. But in Yemen the CIA and the US military’s special forces unit, Joint Special Operations Command, have used various weapons including drones and conventional jets as well as cruise missiles to target al Qaeda militants.

However in recent years drones have come to dominate Obama’s war in Yemen as much as in Pakistan. President Bush ordered a single drone strike in Yemen, killing six people in 2002. Under Obama, the CIA and the Pentagon have launched at least 58 drone strikes on the country killing more than 281 people, including at least 24 reported civilians.

Opaque operations
The escalation in the drone war has happened with almost no official transparency from the White House. It took Obama three years to publicly mention his use of drones. In January 2012 he said ‘actually drones have not caused a huge number of civilian casualties’. He added: ‘For the most part they have been very precise, precision strikes against al Qaeda and affiliates.’

In this period Bureau records show drones reportedly killed at least 236 civilians – including 61 children. And according to a leaked CIA record of drone strikes, seen by the McClatchy news agency, the US often did not know who it was killing. In the year after September 2010 at least 265 of up to 482 people were recorded as the documents as killed by drones ‘were “assessed” as Afghan, Pakistani and unknown extremists’.

A letter written by Attorney General Eric Holder and leaked to NBC confirmed drones had killed four US citizens living abroad. US citizen Anwar al Awlaki died in a missile strike in Yemen on September 30 2011. His 16-year-old son Abdulrahman, who was born in Detroit, was killed in a separate strike two weeks later.

In April 2013 a leaked Department of Justice memo outlined the administration’s legal justification for such killings: the US has the right to kill US citizens if they pose an imminent threat, it said. It added that determining a citizen poses an imminent threat ‘does not require the United States to have clear evidence that a specific attack on US persons and interests will take place in the immediate future’. Jameel Jaffer of the American Civil Liberties Union described the memo as a ‘chilling document’.

For the most part they have been very precise, precision strikes against al Qaeda and affiliates
- President Obama

The following month President Obama made a major policy speech in which he codified the rules his administration must follow as it selects targets for drone strikes and special forces teams.

The rules are meant to constrain the use of drones. Obama said the US only carries out such attacks against individuals who pose ‘a continuing and imminent threat’ to US citizens, not ‘to punish individuals’. Obama acknowledged drone strikes had killed civilians, saying: ‘For me, and those in my chain of command, those deaths will haunt us as long as we live.’ And he added: ‘Before any strike is taken, there must be near-certainty that no civilians will be killed or injured – the highest standard we can set’.

However Bureau analysis shows more people were killed in Pakistan and Yemen in the six months after the speech than the six months before. And the casualty rate also rose over the same period.

In 2013, there were no confirmed civilian casualties in Pakistan – the first year of the drone campaign that this was the case. But in Yemen, the year ended with mass civilian casualties. On December 12, JSOC drones attacked a convoy taking a bride to her wedding. The attack destroyed several vehicles and flying shrapnel killed up to 15 civilians. It was the biggest single loss of civilian life from a US strike for more than a year. The Yemeni government initially claimed al Qaeda militants were killed. But the Yemeni government quickly negotiated reparations with the families of the victims, sending them $140,000 and 100 rifles. The US has not commented on the strike, but in an unprecedented move Washington is carrying out an investigation.

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American People Do Not Trust Big Government Democratic and Republican Parties and The Political Elitist Establishment In Washington — New Political Party Formed When Independents Represent 50% or More of Voters — When? 2022 or 2024 — Fiscal Responsibility, Limited Constitutional Government, Consumption Tax Replacing All Federal Taxes, and Stopping All Legal and Illegal Immigration Exceeding 1 Million Persons Per Year, Replacing The Warfare and Welfare State With A Peace and Prosperity Economy — Jobs For Everyone — I Have A Dream — The Winner Takes It All — Part 1 — Videos

Posted on December 9, 2014. Filed under: Blogroll, Politics, Video, Technology, Taxes, Raves, Resources, Economics, Links, War, Music, Comedy, People, Life, Talk Radio, Education, Energy, Security, Communications, Law, Philosophy, Foreign Policy, Culture, Wisdom, liberty, Crime, Monetary Policy, Fiscal Policy, government spending, media, history, government, Federal Government, College, Business, Money, Banking, Wealth, American History, Diasters, Oil, Natural Gas, Weapons, Tax Policy, Federal Government Budget, Radio, Literacy, Constitution, Photos, Homicide, Music, Radio, Faith, Family, Friends, Freedom, Oil, Natural Gas, Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), Central Intelligence Agency (CIA), Welfare, Crisis, Documentary | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

Project_1

The Pronk Pops Show Podcasts

Pronk Pops Show 384: December 8, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 383: December 5, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 382: December 4, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 381: December 3, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 380: December 1, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 379: November 26, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 378: November 25, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 377: November 24, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 376: November 21, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 375: November 20, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 374: November 19, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 373: November 18, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 372: November 17, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 371: November 14, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 370: November 13, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 369: November 12, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 368: November 11, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 367: November 10, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 366: November 7, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 365: November 6, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 364: November 5, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 363: November 4, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 362: November 3, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 361: October 31, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 360: October 30, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 359: October 29, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 358: October 28, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 357: October 27, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 356: October 24, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 355: October 23, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 354: October 22, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 353: October 21, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 352: October 20, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 351: October 17, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 350: October 16, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 349: October 15, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 348: October 14, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 347: October 13, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 346: October 9, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 345: October 8, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 344: October 6, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 343: October 3, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 342: October 2, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 341: October 1, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 340: September 30, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 339: September 29, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 338: September 26, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 337: September 25, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 336: September 24, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 335: September 23 2014

Pronk Pops Show 334: September 22 2014

Pronk Pops Show 333: September 19 2014

Pronk Pops Show 332: September 18 2014

Pronk Pops Show 331: September 17, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 330: September 16, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 329: September 15, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 328: September 12, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 327: September 11, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 326: September 10, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 325: September 9, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 324: September 8, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 323: September 5, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 322: September 4, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 321: September 3, 2014

 

Story 1: American People Do Not Trust Big Government Democratic and Republican Parties and The Political Elitist Establishment In Washington — New Political Party Formed When Independents Represent 50% or More of Voters — When? 2022 or 2024 — Fiscal Responsibility, Limited Constitutional Government, Consumption Tax Replacing All Federal Taxes, and Stopping All Legal and Illegal Immigration Exceeding 1 Million Persons Per Year, Replacing The Warfare and Welfare State With A Peace and Prosperity Economy — Jobs For Everyone — I Have A Dream — The Winner Takes It All — Part 1 — Videos

 

ABBA – I Have A Dream (From The Late Late Breakfast Show, England 1982)

Abba – The Winner Takes It All

Party Affiliation

Trend: Party affiliation in U.S. plus leaners

http://www.gallup.com/poll/15370/party-affiliation.aspx

 

U.S. Partisanship Shifts to GOP After Midterms

Story Highlights

  • U.S. partisanship shifts to net-Republican after midterms
  • GOP also made gains after 1994 and 2002 midterms
  • Democrats made gains following 2006 midterms

PRINCETON, N.J. — Since the Republican Party’s strong showing on Election Day last month, Americans’ political allegiances have shifted toward the GOP. Prior to the elections, 43% of Americans identified as Democrats or leaned toward the Democratic Party, while 39% identified as or leaned Republican. Since then, Republicans have opened up a slight advantage, 42% to 41%, representing a net shift of five percentage points in the partisanship gap.

U.S. Partisanship Before and After the 2014 Midterm Elections

The pre-election results are based on Gallup Daily tracking interviews with 17,259 U.S. adults, conducted between Oct. 1 and Nov. 4. The post-election interviews are based on 12,671 interviews conducted Nov. 5-30.

There have been similar “bandwagon” effects for the winning party in the past, including after the 1994 and 2002 midterm elections, when Republicans benefited, and after the 2006 election, when Democrats made gains.

U.S. Partisanship Before and After Recent Midterm Elections

The most dramatic shift occurred after the 1994 midterms, in which Republicans picked up more than 50 seats in the House of Representatives to gain a majority in that chamber for the first time in 40 years. Before the 1994 elections, Democrats enjoyed a four-point advantage in party affiliation, but after the GOP wave, Republicans emerged with a 12-point margin, for a total shift of 16 points in the gap.

In 2002, Republicans capitalized on the popularity of George W. Bush to accomplish the rare feat of having the president’s party gain seats in Congress in a midterm election. After that strong showing, partisanship moved from a five-point Democratic edge to a four-point Republican margin.

Four years later, with Bush’s job approval rating stuck below 40%, Democrats gained control of both houses of Congress. An already strong Democratic partisanship advantage of 14 points swelled to 22 points after the election.

Not every “wave” election has produced a distinct shift in a party’s advantage. The 1998 and 2010 midterms were also notable for their outcomes, but did not produce any apparent change in Americans’ basic party loyalties. In 1998, Democrats gained seats in the House even with a Democratic president in office. In 2010, Republicans gained a net of 63 seats in the House to win back control of that chamber. That year, the shifts in party allegiances seemed to be in place before the election, with the smallest Democratic edge seen in any recent midterm year. Consequently, in 2010 it appeared that shifts in party allegiances drove the election results, whereas in other years the election results seemed to produce shifts in party affiliation after the election.

The bandwagon effect can largely be explained by the amount of positive publicity given to the victorious party after its success. However, it is unclear why there would be a bandwagon effect following most midterm elections but not all of them.

No Clear Historical Pattern on How Long Post-Midterm Party Gains Last

One key question is how long the effects persist when they do occur. A review of the three elections with obvious bandwagon effects reveals no consistent pattern.

  • The 1994 Republican surge in partisanship was the largest and the longest lasting. Republicans maintained a healthy eight-point advantage in partisanship through December 1994, and an average four-point advantage from January through March 1995. By April, Democrats had regained a slight edge, and for the most part held it throughout the remainder of the year.
  • The 2002 Republican gains were fairly short-lived, evident in November and December and largely gone by January 2003. However, when the Iraq War commenced in March, Republicans saw another surge in partisanship.
  • The 2006 Democratic gains were the most brief, disappearing by December — though that still left the party with a healthy 12-point edge in partisanship.

Implications

The 2014 midterms were an unqualified success for the Republican Party. The GOP took control of the Senate and expanded its majority in the House, giving Republicans control of both houses of Congress for the first time since 2006. And that success has caused Americans to view the Republican Party more favorably than the Democratic Party, as well as to say congressional Republicans should have more influence than President Barack Obama over the direction the nation takes in the next year. Americans are also now more likely to align themselves politically with the Republican Party than the Democratic Party.

It is not clear how long these good feelings toward the GOP will last. That could be influenced by what Republicans do with their enhanced power. While they are unlikely to achieve many of their major policy objectives with a Democratic president in office, how they and the president navigate the key issues facing the nation over the next two years will go a long way toward determining where each party stands heading into the 2016 presidential election.

Survey Methods

Results for this Gallup poll are based on telephone interviews conducted Nov. 5-30, 2014, on the Gallup U.S. Daily survey, with a random sample of 12,671 adults, aged 18 and older, living in all 50 U.S. states and the District of Columbia. For results based on the total sample of national adults, the margin of sampling error is ±1 percentage point at the 95% confidence level.

Each sample of national adults includes a minimum quota of 50% cellphone respondents and 50% landline respondents, with additional minimum quotas by time zone within region. Landline and cellular telephone numbers are selected using random-digit-dial methods.

http://www.gallup.com/poll/179840/partisanship-shifts-gop-midterms.aspx

Obama Loses Support Among White Millennials

Story Highlights

  • Obama job approval among whites aged 18 to 29 is down to 34%
  • White millennials’ approval only 3 points above older whites’
  • Obama approval remains much higher among nonwhite 18-29s

PRINCETON, N.J. — President Barack Obama’s job approval rating in 2014 among white 18- to 29-year-olds is 34%, three points higher than among whites aged 30 and older. This is the narrowest approval gap between the president’s previously strong support base of white millennials and older white Americans since Obama took office.

Obama Job Approval, Younger vs. Older Whites, and All Americans, 2009-2014

By contrast, the president’s approval rating was nine percentage points higher among younger whites in 2009, and 10 points higher in 2010. Additionally, while the president’s approval among younger whites matched his overall national rating in his first two years in office, it is now eight points below the national average. These data underscore the gradual erosion of the disproportionately strong support Obama received from young white voters as he took office in 2009 and ran for re-election in 2012.

The data are based on yearly averages from Gallup’s Daily tracking, including 2014 data through November.

Obama’s support among white millennials has factored into his two presidential election successes. Exit polls conducted after the 2012 election, for example, showed that Obama received 44% of the vote of white 18- to 29-year-olds, about six points higher than he received among whites aged 30 and older. Obama’s 45% job approval rating among 18- to 29-year-old whites in 2012 mirrored these voting results closely. But the president’s 11-point drop among white 18- to 29-year-olds since 2012 is almost double the six-point drop among the national population and among older whites.

Younger Whites’ Approval Now Closer to All Other Age Groups

From a broader perspective, there is relatively little difference today in Obama’s job approval ratings among whites in any of the four major age groups. Whites aged 30 to 49, as well as those 65 and older, have given Obama a 31% approval rating so far in 2014, with 50- to 64-year-olds coming in at 32% and 18- to 29-year-olds at 34%. The spread among age categories was slightly larger in the earliest years of the Obama administration.

Obama Job Approval Among Whites, by Age, 2009-2014

Support Down, but Still Higher Among Nonwhite Than Among White Young People

Although Obama’s approval rating has dropped among black, Hispanic and Asian 18- to 29-year-olds from 2009 to 2014, just as it has among white millennials, the president maintains a much higher level of support among these groups than among whites. Specifically, Obama’s approval is 80% among young blacks, 68% among young Asians, and 55% among Hispanic 18- to 29-year-olds — contrasted with his 34% approval among white young adults.

Age affects Obama’s approval ratings differently among each of these racial and ethnic groups. Obama does slightly less well among black young people than among older blacks, and significantly better among Asians younger than 50 than among those who are older. There is little significant difference in his approval rating by age within the Hispanic population.

Obama Job Approval, by Age and Race/Ethnicity, 2014

Implications

While Obama is significantly more popular among nonwhites than among whites, he was able to count on proportionately stronger support from young whites than older whites in his 2008 and 2012 presidential election campaigns. Now, his support among white millennials appears to be waning, and these young Americans give Obama an approval rating that is only marginally higher than that among older whites.

These findings demonstrate the general importance of race and ethnicity when one talks about Obama’s job approval ratings by age. Obama continues to enjoy higher approval ratings among all 18- to 29-year-olds — regardless of race or ethnicity — than he does among the general population, but this is largely attributable to younger age groups in the U.S. being disproportionately composed of nonwhites. In other words, a big part of the age gap in Obama’s approval ratings today is attributable not so much to differences in approval within racial or ethnic groups, but to the fact that the white population in the U.S. skews older, while the nonwhite population skews younger.

The white vote has become an increasing challenge for Democratic presidential candidates in recent years, as well as Senate candidates in many Southern and swing states. Just this past weekend, a lack of strong support among white voters was instrumental in incumbent Democratic Sen. Mary Landrieu’s loss in Louisiana’s senatorial runoff election. That loss gives the Republicans control of every southern Senate seat from Texas to the Carolinas. While Democrats are likely to be helped in coming years by a growing Hispanic population, Democratic presidential candidates — and senatorial candidates in many states — will continue to need the votes of a substantial minority of white voters in order to put together a winning coalition. Thus, Obama’s continuing loss of support among younger white voters highlights one of the potential challenges ahead for Democratic candidates in 2016.

Survey Methods

Results for this Gallup poll are based on telephone interviews conducted on the Gallup U.S. Daily survey from 2009 through November 2014, with random samples of approximately 355,000 adults, aged 18 and older, living in all 50 U.S. states and the District of Columbia for each of the 2009-2012 yearly samples; approximately 175,000 adults for 2013; and 163,847 adults for Jan. 2-Nov. 30, 2014. For results based on the total sample of national adults in each yearly average, the margin of sampling error is ±1 percentage point at the 95% confidence level. The margin of sampling error for each year’s age subgroups varies by sample size.

Each sample of national adults includes a minimum quota of 50% cellphone respondents and 50% landline respondents, with additional minimum quotas by time zone within region. Landline and cellular telephone numbers are selected using random-digit-dial methods.

http://www.gallup.com/poll/179921/obama-loses-support-among-white-millennials.aspx

how_congress_spends_your_money

About the bar chart and the U.S. Federal Budget.

Bar Chart Data Source: Monthly Treasury Statement (MTS) published by the U. S. Treasury Department. WE DON’T MAKE THIS UP! IT COMES FROM THE U. S. GOVERNMENT! NO ADJUSTMENTS.

The MTS published in October, reports the final actual expenditures for the previous FY. This chart shows FY2014 actual spending data. Here is the link to download your own copy from the Treasury Department web site.

The chart normally shows the proposed budget line for the next fiscal year (FY2015 started 1 October 2014), but Congress has not passed a “budget” for FY2015; we’re still using continuing resolutions to fund the federal government.

The Congressional Budget Office reported on the Federal Debt and the Risk of a Financial Crisis in this report on the non-budget.

NDAC Challenge: Look at the bar chart to find items that are growing and items that are being reduced. Example: One of the largest growth departments is at the Department of Agriculture; it handles Food Stamps (SNAP). You pay taxes, your money is paying for food stamps.

- – – – – – -

Here is a MUST SEE … The Budget in Pictures!

NDAC studies the Budget Proposals submitted to the U.S. Senate each year by the President of the United States and by the House of Representatives. The budget submissions include Budget Historical Tables published by OMB. Expenditures are shown in Table 4.1, scroll way right to find current years actuals and estimates. Our analysis is discussed on the home page of this web site.

“Deficit” vs. “Debt”

Suppose you spend more money this month than your income. This situation is called a “budget deficit”. So you borrow (ie; use your credit card). The amount you borrowed (and now owe) is called your debt. You have to pay interest on your debt. If next month you spend more than your income, another deficit, you must borrow some more, and you’ll still have to pay the interest on your debt (now larger). If you have a deficit every month, you keep borrowing and your debt grows. Soon the interest payment on your loan is bigger than any other item in your budget. Eventually, all you can do is pay the interest payment, and you don’t have any money left over for anything else. This situation is known as bankruptcy.

“Reducing the deficit” is a meaningless soundbite. If theDEFICIT is any amount more than ZERO, we have to borrow more and the DEBT grows.

Each year since 1969, Congress has spent more money than its income. The Treasury Department has to borrow money to meet Congress’s appropriations. Here is a direct link to the Congressional Budget Office web site’s deficit analysis. We have to pay interest* on that huge, growing debt; and it dramatically cuts into our budget.

Cut spending??? What would you cut?
[All federal expenses are shown on the chart above].
And there is a lot of missing money! Where is it?
The Treasury Department has the third largest expense in the federal budget. Only Defense andentitlement programs (run by Departments of Health and Human Services, HUD, and Agriculture (food stamps)) spend more. As the debt increases, so does the interest payment. Entitlement spending is the largest item in our federal budget. Do you have “Compassion” for lower income earners? In FY2013 the U. S. Treasury Department spent $416 Billion of your money on interest payments to the holders of the National Debt.
Compare that to NASA at $17B,
Agriculture at $156B,
Labor at $80B,
Transportation at $76B!Can the federal budget be balanced? Here’s a video about that.
When you buy something, all the companies involved in producing and delivering it, were charged a wide range of taxes, and those costs are part of the price ofeverything you buy. The price of everything you buy will go up to cover any business tax increases.You are paying those corporate taxes! Read more about the proposed Energy Tax increases. So don’t forget that the price of fuel is in the cost of everything. The “Economic Stimulus” is shifting us from an “economic crisis” to a debt crisis!Consider this; if businesses could print their own money and give it away to customers so they could buy the products, many folks would be happy for a while; but the businesses would go bankrupt. Well, that’s what our government is currently doing, printing and giving away money.

 

  • It has been reported that about 50% of Americans pay no income tax. But, if those folks buy anything, they pay “embedded taxes”*. Here is a video about taxation.
    *[About 22% of the price of any product you buy is because of taxation on the companies that were involved in that product being produced and being at a place where it could be bought; and that’s before local sales taxes were added.] Every company must cover ALL its costs (including taxation) in the price of its product; or it will go bankrupt.

 

OPPOSING VIEWS AND MORE:

  • Government Programs always cost more than originally predicted. What about Healthcare?

**The Government cannot provide anything to anyone without first taking money from someone else to pay for it.

NOTABLE QUOTES

  • “For society as a whole, nothing comes as a ‘right’ to which we are ‘entitled’. Even bare subsistence has to be produced…. The only way anyone can have a right to something that has to be produced is to force someone else to produce it… The more things are provided as rights, the less the recipients have to work and the more the providers have to carry the load.” Thomas Sowell, quoted in Forbes and Reader’s Digest.
  • According to Mr. Kneeland, “…all dollars come from the people. Where do [you] think Coca-Cola gets the money to pay its taxes, Exxon gets its money to pay the Exxon Valdez fines, Denny’s gets the money to pay its Justice Department fines, or even Microsoft gets the money to defend itself? It all ultimately can come from only one place, and that’s from individuals.” ED: When you buy a product, the price of that product has to cover ALL the costs to get that product to you.
  • “A politician cannot spend one dime on any spending project without first taking that dime from the person who earned it. So, when a politician votes for a spending bill he is saying that he believes the government should spend that particular dollar rather than the individual who worked for it.” Neal Boortz.
  • “There is no such thing as government money – only taxpayer money.” William Weld, quoted in Readers Digest.
  • “Who will provide the roof to protect you from the rain, the heat to comfort you from the cold, and the coffee to fill your stomach when the damn, greedy capitalists are all gone?” – David Berresford, Thursday, May 20, 2010, Canada Free Press.
SOCIAL SECURITYis not part of the Federal Budget (General Fund). It is a separate account from the General Fund, and has its own source of income (“Payroll Tax”). Social Security payments go in the Social Security Trust Fund (SSTF), and should NOT be counted as general revenue. The SSTF is supposed to be used to pay benefits. But, the Government is under NO OBLIGATION to pay Social Security benefits, and has even borrowed substantially fromtheSSTF for general operations!As of August 2010, there is less being paid into the Social Security Trust Fund than is being paid out to beneficiaries. Social Security is now using its “surplus”.Other Government agencies borrowed from that trust fund, and now have to pay it back. But they already spent it! So how will they pay it back? Through bailouts and taxes. Here is a “must read” about the problem. Your payroll taxes are going into a bottomless hole!The Social Security Administration’s FAQ page about the Trust Fund, and their latestReport (May 2011) explain it well.Beware the term “Social Security Surplus”; there is no such thing. Social Security is aPonzi Scheme, there is never more in the Trust Fund than will ever be needed.

Social Security must be fixed. Here is a debate page. And here is more information on the Root Problem with Social Security.

The Government does not have any money, it does nothing to earn money (maybe defense). Government takes money from you and borrows more (from your children), then spends that! The bailouts of 2008 and 2009 are purely deficit spending. Expect to see enormous deficits in the forseeable future, leading to much more debt.Interest payments on that growing debt will become the largest item in the federal budget. On C-SPAN, President Obama boldly told Americans: “We are out of money.” In 1913, when the Federal Reserve was created with the duty of preserving the dollar, one 20-dollar bill could buy one 20-dollar gold piece. Today, fifty 20-dollar bills are needed to buy one 20-dollar gold piece. Under the Fed’s custody, the U.S. dollar has lost 98 percent of its value. The dollar is the storehouse of our wealth. Has the Fed faithfully safeguarded that storehouse? Thomas Jefferson said, “In questions of power let us hear no more of trust in men, but bind them down from mischief with the chains of the Constitution.”

http://www.federalbudget.com/

U.S. Debt Clock

http://www.usdebtclock.org/

where-did-your-tax-dollar-go-600americas-deficit-federal-spending-600spending-cuts-680budget-entitlement-programs-680national-defense-spending-680impact-medicare-spending-growth-680federal-spending-per-household-680

U.S. Debt Clock

http://www.usdebtclock.org/

The GOP’s ‘Cromnibus’ Compromise

Republicans look to strike back after the president’s executive action on immigration.

House Speaker John Boehner answers questions during his weekly press conference on Dec. 4, 2014, in Washington, D.C.

House Speaker John Boehner has acknowledged that there is no simple way for the GOP to undue the president’s executive action on immigration reform.

By Dec. 8, 2014
A perfect storm of historic dysfunction combined with a lame-duck Congress, a looming power change in the Senate, a budget deadline, the holidays and the countdown to the 2016 elections has not prodded lawmakers to make compromises or to do their basic budgetary work. It has, however, led to a brand-new Washington term. Enter the “cromnibus.”

That’s the name being assigned to a tortured GOP strategy to stick it to President Barack Obama and make a bold statement on immigration and border security – all while avoiding shutting down the federal government right before the holidays, a tactic that didn’t work out so well for the GOP when it happened last year.

Described as a trial balloon, the approach was floated by House Speaker John Boehner at the party’s Tuesday morning meeting last week. The GOP plan goes like this: Congress would pass an omnibus funding bill to keep almost the entire government running into September 2015. However, the Department of Homeland Security – the department that deals with the implementation of Obama’s executive action on immigration, which the Republicans hate – would limp along on a mere continuing resolution that would fund it until sometime next March. That would give Republicans time and opportunity to pressure the Obama administration into backing off its executive action somehow – or at least isolate the DHS budget so Republicans, who next year will control both the House and Senate, could deny the funds needed to implement the action. Meanwhile, House members were given a chance, before recessing for the year, to take what is widely regarded as a show vote to undo the executive action.

[READ: Republicans Use Gridlock Because It Works]

This way, lawmakers explained, House Republicans can vent about border security, Obama and the use of an executive action to grant temporary legal status to more than 4 million people in the country illegally, all without suffering the political consequences of another government shutdown.

Boehner acknowledged that there’s no easy way for congressional Republicans to undo Obama’s executive action; rank-and-file members have thrown around ideas ranging from refusing to provide funds to implement the action to a lawsuit or impeachment.

Each has its logistical and political complications: Refusing to fund Homeland Security could make Republicans look like they don’t care about the safety of the nation’s citizens; a lawsuit (even if the House is deemed to have standing to sue) could cause a political backlash; and impeachment could lead to a repeat of 1998, when a similar action against former President Bill Clinton backfired against the GOP.

Pictured: Immigration reform protesters, left, and tea party protesters, right.

In countering Obama on immigration, the GOP has to weigh the interests of the Hispanic community against the ideals of the party’s base.

And Republicans must be mindful of two important constituencies in 2016 – the GOP base, which wants the action undone and might reject a presidential primary candidate who won’t commit to doing so, and the Hispanic community, which might align itself even more firmly against Republicans if the GOP commits to a policy that would break up families living here with temporary legal status.

“We’re looking at a variety of options, both for right now and when Republicans control both houses of the Congress next year,” Boehner, R-Ohio, told reporters. “Frankly, we have limited options and limited abilities to deal with it directly.”

Thus, GOP strategists have proposed the “cromnibus,” a compromise that would keep nearly all agencies and programs humming along until next September (since Congress has been unable to pass any of the appropriations bills that make up the federal budget) and avoid a government shutdown that would occur if nothing is done before the current continuing resolution expires Dec. 11.

[ALSO: NSA Reform Axed From ‘Cromnibus’]

Meanwhile, Homeland Security would be put on a short budgetary leash until March. By that point, Republicans reason, they will be running both chambers of Congress and will be able to pass legislation excising funding for the part of the department that deals with the new executive action, killing it by starvation.

“The most effective thing we can do is to limit spending,” says Rep. John Fleming, R-La. While Fleming says Obama is assuming excessive powers as the nation’s chief executive, “we’ve got our own power – the power of the purse,” he adds.

Graphic quote by Rep. John Fleming, R-La.: "Republicans are blamed for everything, anyway. What difference does it make?”

But Fleming, like some other House conservatives, is irked by the idea that the House should wait until next year to go full-force against the immigration action – meaning Boehner may need House Democrats to get such a plan approved.

“I don’t think anybody wants a shutdown,” says Rep. Matt Salmon, R-Ariz. But “I think we have significant leverage.”

The simmering rebellion by House conservatives means Boehner is likely to continue to face the same internal divisions he’s had since 2011, when a wave of new tea party-aligned lawmakers gave the GOP the House majority and demanded a rightward turn in the way the party ran things. That pressure largely drove the 16-day government shutdown in October 2013 – a development polls showed Americans blamed on Republicans. So would the public also blame the GOP if Homeland Security does not get the cash it needs to keep Americans safe?

[MORE: Poll Finds Latino Boost for Obama]

“Republicans are blamed for everything, anyway – what difference does it make?” Fleming says.

However, Senate Democrats are determined not to end their reign with a shutdown, even if the GOP gets blamed for it. Getting almost all of the government funded until next fall would be “a big accomplishment,” Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., told reporters.

Moreover, the GOP needs to worry about overreach, Democrats say. Any specific effort to undo the executive action is likely to be vetoed by Obama. That leaves Republicans in the same position as they were with the Affordable Care Act. They could hold a series of votes opposing it or defunding it, but none would get signed into law. And the difference with immigration, notes Rep. Elijah Cummings, D-Md., is that the substance of the order (as opposed to the process) is indeed popular with the public, in a way Obamacare is not.

“You’re talking about changing the trajectory of a family’s destiny for generations – that’s deep,” Cummings says.

Opposing Obama’s order as executive overreach might excite the GOP base, but Hispanic families are equally excited about the opportunity to stay intact in the U.S., he adds. For Boehner, the challenge may be keeping his Republican family united.

George Carlin – It’s a big club and you ain’t in it

Senator Ted Cruz: ” Let Me Be Clear, I Don’t Trust The Republicans ” – 5/22/13

Rush Limbaugh On Eric Garner, Fox News Criticism FULL INTERVIEW Rush Limbaugh Fox News Sunday

Krauthammer: A Gov’t Shutdown Would Be A Disaster For Republicans – Lou Dobbs – America’s Newsroom

Nation’s Debt Tops $18 Trillion As Dc Continues To Spend – Cavuto

U.S. Debt Clock

http://www.usdebtclock.org/

Urgent Issue Of Immigration & The Budget – Special Report 1st Segment

Americans: In Obama we don’t trust

President’s Unilateral Action on Immigration Undermines Americans’ Trust

***AMERICANS DONT TRUST THE GOVERNMENT *** there criminals.

Top 10 Government Lies – When said ‘Trust Us’

Krauthammer on Obama: American “People Think This Is Failed Presidency”

Why Shouldn’t I Work for the NSA? (Good Will Hunting)

U.S. Drones kill more people than ISIS: Chris Hedges

Chris Hedges, author, Pulitzer-prize winning journalist and polemicist discusses the importance of resistance to empire, and passionately condemns US foreign policy, saying “There is no difference between a beheading by ISIL and a US drone strike.”

Chris Hedges: The Absurdity of American Empire [FULL INTERVIEW]

Chris Hedges Call to Action to create “New Movements” replacing corrupt Government

George Carlin on American Foreign Policy – Bombing Brown People

The Best of George Carlin: Exposing our government and fall of humanity one joke at a time

The Pursuit Of Happyness – Job Interview

Best scene pursuit of happyness, Will Smith at his best

Motivational Speech from Pursuit of Happiness

Abba – Take A Chance On Me

ABBA – Thank You for the Music

The Pronk Pops Show Podcasts Portfolio

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Remembering Pearl Harbor — Sunday, December 7, 2014 — Videos

Posted on December 7, 2014. Filed under: Blogroll, Politics, Video, Raves, Resources, Links, War, People, Life, Talk Radio, Strategy, Communications, Law, Philosophy, Foreign Policy, Culture, Wisdom, liberty, government spending, media, history, government, Movies, American History, Diasters, Water, Press, Photos, Heroes, Freedom, Documentary | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , |

remembering_pearl_harborpearlharborday-copypearl_harbor_anniversary-7OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA2014-12-04-PearlharborArizonamemoripearl harborPearl Harbor Memorialpearl-harbor-remembrance-The Attack 1941 On Pearl HarbormapAerial_photograph_from_unknown_jap_aviator_over_Pearl_HarboPearl Harbor Anniversarypearl-harbor-remembrance-daypearl-harbor-mappearl-harbor-mem-day

America Declares War on Japan – President Roosevelt Speech 

20/20: FDR’s Planned Preemptive Attack on Japan (July 1941) – Full

ABC television “20/20″ broadcast, Nov. 22, 1991 – Known as JB 355 (after the Army-Navy Joint Board that preceded the creation of the Joint Chiefs of Staff ), this scheme as approved in July 1941 envisioned the transfer of several dozen medium-range bombers to a Chinese front corporation with funding provided in part by Lend-Lease. Members of the American Volunteer Group (AVG) led by former Army pilot Claire Chennault, who worked for China, would fly the planes on a series of incendiary raids against Japan. Chinese officials saw this as retaliation for the brutal war waged by Japan since 1937, and the plan’s American boosters apparently believed that the attacks would deter wider Japanese aggression without provoking a direct response against the United States. For a variety of reasons, including a shortage of aircraft, bureaucratic snafus, and opposition from Secretary of War Henry Stimson and Army Chief of Staff General George C. Marshall, the transfer of bombers was delayed, and the plan was eventually overtaken by Japan’s own preemptive attack of 7 December 1941.

Sacrifice at Pearl Harbor

Pearl Harbor Was An Inside Job: FDR Knew When and Where Japanese Would Attack

The Attack of Dec. 7, 1941

How U.S. Economic Warfare Provoked Japan’s Attack on Pearl Harbor | Robert Higgs

Did Roosevelt Goad Japan Into Pearl Harbor Attack?

Adm. Kimmel Testifies On Pearl Harbor 1946/1/14

Conspiracy Theories ; The Pearl Harbor Advance Knowledge [FULL VIDEO]

Pearl Harbor Revisited: From an Anti – Fascist Standpoint. Part I

Pearl Harbor Revisited: From an Anti – Fascist Standpoint. Part II

Survivors to Commemorate 73rd Anniversary of Pearl Harbor Attack

PEARL HARBOR FACT – FULL DOCUMENTARY

Military Documentary Films Untold Secrets of Pearl Harbor What They Didn’t Tell the World

December 7 – Documentary of the Attack on Pearl Harbor, John Ford

WWII:RARE COLOR FILM:PEARL HARBOR DECEMBER 7 1941 1

WWII:RARE COLOR FILM:PEARL HARBOR DECEMBER 7 1941 2

WWII:RARE COLOR FILM:PEARL HARBOR DECEMBER 7 1941 3

 

1941 Pearl Harbor – New Japanese Footage! HD

Pearl Harbor – Dec. 7, 1941 – The only color film of the attack

Pearl Harbor in Color – Rare Documentary

“Pearl Harbor – 24 Hours After” ( Full Documentary )

Remember Pearl Harbor

Remembering a last-of-its-kind survivor of Pearl Harbor

Pearl Harbor 70 Years Later

Pearl Harbor Movie Full Trailer

The best part of the movie “Pearl Harbor”

pearl harbour movie ending scene

faith hill – there you’ll be (pearl harbor)

 

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First Good Jobs Report In Years with 321,000 Jobs Created In November With 5.8% Unemployment Rate U-3, 9.1 Million Unemployed — Still 10-12 Million Jobs Short Due To Low Labor Participation Rate of 62.8% — Years Away From Near Full Unemployment Rate of 3% With 67% Labor Participation Rate — National Debt Hits $18 Trillion and Climbing — Videos

Posted on December 6, 2014. Filed under: American History, Banking, Blogroll, British History, Central Intelligence Agency (CIA), College, Communications, Constitution, Crisis, Data, Demographics, Diasters, Economics, Education, Energy, Enivornment, European History, Faith, Family, Federal Government, Federal Government Budget, Fiscal Policy, Foreign Policy, Freedom, Friends, government, government spending, Health Care, history, Illegal, Immigration, Inflation, Investments, Islam, Islam, Law, liberty, Life, Links, Literacy, Macroeconomics, media, Microeconomics, Monetary Policy, Money, National Security Agency (NSA_, Natural Gas, Natural Gas, Nuclear Power, Obamacare, Oil, Oil, People, Philosophy, Photos, Politics, Press, Psychology, Public Sector, Radio, Raves, Regulations, Religion, Resources, Security, Shite, Sunni, Talk Radio, Tax Policy, Taxes, Technology, Terrorism, Unemployment, Video, War, Wealth, Weapons | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , |

Project_1

The Pronk Pops Show Podcasts

Pronk Pops Show 383: December 5, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 382: December 4, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 381: December 3, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 380: December 1, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 379: November 26, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 378: November 25, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 377: November 24, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 376: November 21, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 375: November 20, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 374: November 19, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 373: November 18, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 372: November 17, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 371: November 14, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 370: November 13, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 369: November 12, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 368: November 11, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 367: November 10, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 366: November 7, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 365: November 6, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 364: November 5, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 363: November 4, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 362: November 3, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 361: October 31, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 360: October 30, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 359: October 29, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 358: October 28, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 357: October 27, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 356: October 24, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 355: October 23, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 354: October 22, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 353: October 21, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 352: October 20, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 351: October 17, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 350: October 16, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 349: October 15, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 348: October 14, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 347: October 13, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 346: October 9, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 345: October 8, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 344: October 6, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 343: October 3, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 342: October 2, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 341: October 1, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 340: September 30, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 339: September 29, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 338: September 26, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 337: September 25, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 336: September 24, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 335: September 23 2014

Pronk Pops Show 334: September 22 2014

Pronk Pops Show 333: September 19 2014

Pronk Pops Show 332: September 18 2014

Pronk Pops Show 331: September 17, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 330: September 16, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 329: September 15, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 328: September 12, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 327: September 11, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 326: September 10, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 325: September 9, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 324: September 8, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 323: September 5, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 322: September 4, 2014

Pronk Pops Show 321: September 3, 2014

Story 1: First Good Jobs Report In Years with 321,000 Jobs Created In November With 5.8% Unemployment Rate U-3, 9.1  Million Unemployed — Still 10-12 Million Jobs Short Due To Low Labor Participation Rate of 62.8% — Years Away From Near Full Unemployment Rate of 3% With 67% Labor Participation Rate — National Debt Hits $18 Trillion and Climbing —  Videos

national-debt-wave

37b-cartoon Cartoon-Stretched-Thin-ALG-600 national_debt

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U.S. Debt Clock

http://www.usdebtclock.org/

 

sgs-emp

http://www.shadowstats.com/alternate_data/unemployment-charts

private sector payroll employment monthly change

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world-oil-supplyunnamed

Crude Oil Brent

Latest Price & Chart for Crude Oil Brent

End of day Commodity Futures Price Quotes for Crude Oil Brent

oil_spot

 http://www.nasdaq.com/markets/crude-oil-brent.aspx#ixzz3LA0mUyxX

OilPriceChartDec2014

Get Ready for More Layoffs and Higher Unemployment

Ep 28: Media Spins Horrible Holiday Sales as Reflecting Economic Strength

The Real Reason for Falling Oil and Gas Prices

Crude Oil Drop – Richard Perrin – December 5, 2014

Could Oil Fall To $60?

Series Preview: The Global Drop in Oil Prices

Falling Gas Prices Impact US Oil Extraction

Over $150 Billion of Oil Projects Face Axe in 2015

Nook Fail, Jobs Report, Buffet backs Clinton – Today’s Investor News

Mohamed El-Erian: Nov. Jobs Report Is Great News for Economy

Hiring surge: 321k jobs added in November

Employment Situation Report – November 2014

Labor Force Statistics from the Current Population Survey

Employment Level

147,287,000

Series Id:           LNS12000000
Seasonally Adjusted
Series title:        (Seas) Employment Level
Labor force status:  Employed
Type of data:        Number in thousands
Age:                 16 years and over

 

employment level

 

Year Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Annual
2000 136559(1) 136598 136701 137270 136630 136940 136531 136662 136893 137088 137322 137614
2001 137778 137612 137783 137299 137092 136873 137071 136241 136846 136392 136238 136047
2002 135701 136438 136177 136126 136539 136415 136413 136705 137302 137008 136521 136426
2003 137417(1) 137482 137434 137633 137544 137790 137474 137549 137609 137984 138424 138411
2004 138472(1) 138542 138453 138680 138852 139174 139556 139573 139487 139732 140231 140125
2005 140245(1) 140385 140654 141254 141609 141714 142026 142434 142401 142548 142499 142752
2006 143150(1) 143457 143741 143761 144089 144353 144202 144625 144815 145314 145534 145970
2007 146028(1) 146057 146320 145586 145903 146063 145905 145682 146244 145946 146595 146273
2008 146378(1) 146156 146086 146132 145908 145737 145532 145203 145076 144802 144100 143369
2009 142152(1) 141640 140707 140656 140248 140009 139901 139492 138818 138432 138659 138013
2010 138451(1) 138599 138752 139309 139247 139148 139179 139427 139393 139111 139030 139266
2011 139287(1) 139422 139655 139622 139653 139409 139524 139904 140154 140335 140747 140836
2012 141677(1) 141943 142079 141963 142257 142432 142272 142204 142947 143369 143233 143212
2013 143384(1) 143464 143393 143676 143919 144075 144285 144179 144270 143485 144443 144586
2014 145224(1) 145266 145742 145669 145814 146221 146352 146368 146600 147283 147287
1 : Data affected by changes in population controls.

 

Civilian Labor Force Level

156,397,000

Civilian Labor Force


Series Id:           
LNS11000000
Seasonally Adjusted
Series title:        (Seas) Civilian Labor Force Level
Labor force status:  Civilian labor force
Type of data:        Number in thousands
Age:                 16 years and over

Year Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Annual
2000 142267(1) 142456 142434 142751 142388 142591 142278 142514 142518 142622 142962 143248
2001 143800 143701 143924 143569 143318 143357 143654 143284 143989 144086 144240 144305
2002 143883 144653 144481 144725 144938 144808 144803 145009 145552 145314 145041 145066
2003 145937(1) 146100 146022 146474 146500 147056 146485 146445 146530 146716 147000 146729
2004 146842(1) 146709 146944 146850 147065 147460 147692 147564 147415 147793 148162 148059
2005 148029(1) 148364 148391 148926 149261 149238 149432 149779 149954 150001 150065 150030
2006 150214(1) 150641 150813 150881 151069 151354 151377 151716 151662 152041 152406 152732
2007 153144(1) 152983 153051 152435 152670 153041 153054 152749 153414 153183 153835 153918
2008 154063(1) 153653 153908 153769 154303 154313 154469 154641 154570 154876 154639 154655
2009 154210(1) 154538 154133 154509 154747 154716 154502 154307 153827 153784 153878 153111
2010 153404(1) 153720 153964 154642 154106 153631 153706 154087 153971 153631 154127 153639
2011 153198(1) 153280 153403 153566 153526 153379 153309 153724 154059 153940 154072 153927
2012 154328(1) 154826 154811 154565 154946 155134 154970 154669 155018 155507 155279 155485
2013 155699(1) 155511 155099 155359 155609 155822 155693 155435 155473 154625 155284 154937
2014 155460(1) 155724 156227 155421 155613 155694 156023 155959 155862 156278 156397
1 : Data affected by changes in population controls.

 

Labor Force Participation Rate

62.8%

Labor Participation Rate

Series Id: LNS11300000

Seasonally Adjusted
Series title: (Seas) Labor Force Participation Rate
Labor force status: Civilian labor force participation rate
Type of data: Percent or rate
Age: 16 years and over

Year Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Annual
2000 67.3 67.3 67.3 67.3 67.1 67.1 66.9 66.9 66.9 66.8 66.9 67.0
2001 67.2 67.1 67.2 66.9 66.7 66.7 66.8 66.5 66.8 66.7 66.7 66.7
2002 66.5 66.8 66.6 66.7 66.7 66.6 66.5 66.6 66.7 66.6 66.4 66.3
2003 66.4 66.4 66.3 66.4 66.4 66.5 66.2 66.1 66.1 66.1 66.1 65.9
2004 66.1 66.0 66.0 65.9 66.0 66.1 66.1 66.0 65.8 65.9 66.0 65.9
2005 65.8 65.9 65.9 66.1 66.1 66.1 66.1 66.2 66.1 66.1 66.0 66.0
2006 66.0 66.1 66.2 66.1 66.1 66.2 66.1 66.2 66.1 66.2 66.3 66.4
2007 66.4 66.3 66.2 65.9 66.0 66.0 66.0 65.8 66.0 65.8 66.0 66.0
2008 66.2 66.0 66.1 65.9 66.1 66.1 66.1 66.1 66.0 66.0 65.9 65.8
2009 65.7 65.8 65.6 65.7 65.7 65.7 65.5 65.4 65.1 65.0 65.0 64.6
2010 64.8 64.9 64.9 65.2 64.9 64.6 64.6 64.7 64.6 64.4 64.6 64.3
2011 64.2 64.2 64.2 64.2 64.2 64.0 64.0 64.1 64.2 64.1 64.1 64.0
2012 63.7 63.9 63.8 63.7 63.8 63.8 63.7 63.5 63.6 63.7 63.6 63.6
2013 63.6 63.5 63.3 63.4 63.4 63.5 63.4 63.2 63.2 62.8 63.0 62.8
2014 63.0 63.0 63.2 62.8 62.8 62.8 62.9 62.8 62.7 62.8 62.8

 

Unemployment Level

9,110,000

 

Series Id:           LNS13000000
Seasonally Adjusted
Series title:        (Seas) Unemployment Level
Labor force status:  Unemployed
Type of data:        Number in thousands
Age:                 16 years and over

unemployment level

Year Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Annual
2000 5708 5858 5733 5481 5758 5651 5747 5853 5625 5534 5639 5634
2001 6023 6089 6141 6271 6226 6484 6583 7042 7142 7694 8003 8258
2002 8182 8215 8304 8599 8399 8393 8390 8304 8251 8307 8520 8640
2003 8520 8618 8588 8842 8957 9266 9011 8896 8921 8732 8576 8317
2004 8370 8167 8491 8170 8212 8286 8136 7990 7927 8061 7932 7934
2005 7784 7980 7737 7672 7651 7524 7406 7345 7553 7453 7566 7279
2006 7064 7184 7072 7120 6980 7001 7175 7091 6847 6727 6872 6762
2007 7116 6927 6731 6850 6766 6979 7149 7067 7170 7237 7240 7645
2008 7685 7497 7822 7637 8395 8575 8937 9438 9494 10074 10538 11286
2009 12058 12898 13426 13853 14499 14707 14601 14814 15009 15352 15219 15098
2010 14953 15121 15212 15333 14858 14483 14527 14660 14578 14520 15097 14373
2011 13910 13858 13748 13944 13873 13971 13785 13820 13905 13604 13326 13090
2012 12650 12883 12732 12603 12689 12702 12698 12464 12070 12138 12045 12273
2013 12315 12047 11706 11683 11690 11747 11408 11256 11203 11140 10841 10351
2014 10236 10459 10486 9753 9799 9474 9671 9591 9262 8995 9110

Unemployment Rate U-3

5.8%

Series Id:           LNS14000000
Seasonally Adjusted
Series title:        (Seas) Unemployment Rate
Labor force status:  Unemployment rate
Type of data:        Percent or rate
Age:                 16 years and over
unemployment rate

 

Year Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Annual
2000 4.0 4.1 4.0 3.8 4.0 4.0 4.0 4.1 3.9 3.9 3.9 3.9
2001 4.2 4.2 4.3 4.4 4.3 4.5 4.6 4.9 5.0 5.3 5.5 5.7
2002 5.7 5.7 5.7 5.9 5.8 5.8 5.8 5.7 5.7 5.7 5.9 6.0
2003 5.8 5.9 5.9 6.0 6.1 6.3 6.2 6.1 6.1 6.0 5.8 5.7
2004 5.7 5.6 5.8 5.6 5.6 5.6 5.5 5.4 5.4 5.5 5.4 5.4
2005 5.3 5.4 5.2 5.2 5.1 5.0 5.0 4.9 5.0 5.0 5.0 4.9
2006 4.7 4.8 4.7 4.7 4.6 4.6 4.7 4.7 4.5 4.4 4.5 4.4
2007 4.6 4.5 4.4 4.5 4.4 4.6 4.7 4.6 4.7 4.7 4.7 5.0
2008 5.0 4.9 5.1 5.0 5.4 5.6 5.8 6.1 6.1 6.5 6.8 7.3
2009 7.8 8.3 8.7 9.0 9.4 9.5 9.5 9.6 9.8 10.0 9.9 9.9
2010 9.7 9.8 9.9 9.9 9.6 9.4 9.5 9.5 9.5 9.5 9.8 9.4
2011 9.1 9.0 9.0 9.1 9.0 9.1 9.0 9.0 9.0 8.8 8.6 8.5
2012 8.2 8.3 8.2 8.2 8.2 8.2 8.2 8.1 7.8 7.8 7.8 7.9
2013 7.9 7.7 7.5 7.5 7.5 7.5 7.3 7.2 7.2 7.2 7.0 6.7
2014 6.6 6.7 6.7 6.3 6.3 6.1 6.2 6.1 5.9 5.8 5.8

 

Employment -Population Ratio

5.9%

Series Id:           LNS12300000
Seasonally Adjusted
Series title:        (Seas) Employment-Population Ratio
Labor force status:  Employment-population ratio
Type of data:        Percent or rate
Age:                 16 years and over

employment population ratio

Year Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Annual
2000 64.6 64.6 64.6 64.7 64.4 64.5 64.2 64.2 64.2 64.2 64.3 64.4
2001 64.4 64.3 64.3 64.0 63.8 63.7 63.7 63.2 63.5 63.2 63.0 62.9
2002 62.7 63.0 62.8 62.7 62.9 62.7 62.7 62.7 63.0 62.7 62.5 62.4
2003 62.5 62.5 62.4 62.4 62.3 62.3 62.1 62.1 62.0 62.1 62.3 62.2
2004 62.3 62.3 62.2 62.3 62.3 62.4 62.5 62.4 62.3 62.3 62.5 62.4
2005 62.4 62.4 62.4 62.7 62.8 62.7 62.8 62.9 62.8 62.8 62.7 62.8
2006 62.9 63.0 63.1 63.0 63.1 63.1 63.0 63.1 63.1 63.3 63.3 63.4
2007 63.3 63.3 63.3 63.0 63.0 63.0 62.9 62.7 62.9 62.7 62.9 62.7
2008 62.9 62.8 62.7 62.7 62.5 62.4 62.2 62.0 61.9 61.7 61.4 61.0
2009 60.6 60.3 59.9 59.8 59.6 59.4 59.3 59.1 58.7 58.5 58.6 58.3
2010 58.5 58.5 58.5 58.7 58.6 58.5 58.5 58.6 58.5 58.3 58.2 58.3
2011 58.4 58.4 58.4 58.4 58.4 58.2 58.2 58.3 58.4 58.4 58.5 58.5
2012 58.5 58.5 58.6 58.5 58.6 58.6 58.5 58.4 58.6 58.8 58.7 58.6
2013 58.6 58.6 58.5 58.6 58.7 58.7 58.7 58.6 58.6 58.2 58.6 58.6
2014 58.8 58.8 58.9 58.9 58.9 59.0 59.0 59.0 59.0 59.2 59.2

 

Unemployment Rate 16-19 Years Old

17.7%


Series Id:           
LNS14000012
Seasonally Adjusted
Series title:        (Seas) Unemployment Rate – 16-19 yrs.
Labor force status:  Unemployment rate
Type of data:        Percent or rate
Age:                 16 to 19 yearsteenage unemployment rate

 

Year Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Annual
2000 12.7 13.8 13.3 12.6 12.8 12.3 13.4 14.0 13.0 12.8 13.0 13.2
2001 13.8 13.7 13.8 13.9 13.4 14.2 14.4 15.6 15.2 16.0 15.9 17.0
2002 16.5 16.0 16.6 16.7 16.6 16.7 16.8 17.0 16.3 15.1 17.1 16.9
2003 17.2 17.2 17.8 17.7 17.9 19.0 18.2 16.6 17.6 17.2 15.7 16.2
2004 17.0 16.5 16.8 16.6 17.1 17.0 17.8 16.7 16.6 17.4 16.4 17.6
2005 16.2 17.5 17.1 17.8 17.8 16.3 16.1 16.1 15.5 16.1 17.0 14.9
2006 15.1 15.3 16.1 14.6 14.0 15.8 15.9 16.0 16.3 15.2 14.8 14.6
2007 14.8 14.9 14.9 15.9 15.9 16.3 15.3 15.9 15.9 15.4 16.2 16.8
2008 17.8 16.6 16.1 15.9 19.0 19.2 20.7 18.6 19.1 20.0 20.3 20.5
2009 20.7 22.3 22.2 22.2 23.4 24.7 24.3 25.0 25.9 27.2 26.9 26.7
2010 26.0 25.6 26.2 25.4 26.5 26.0 25.9 25.6 25.8 27.3 24.8 25.3
2011 25.5 24.1 24.3 24.5 23.9 24.8 24.8 25.1 24.5 24.2 24.1 23.3
2012 23.5 23.8 24.8 24.6 24.2 23.7 23.7 24.4 23.8 23.8 23.9 24.0
2013 23.5 25.2 23.9 23.7 24.1 23.8 23.4 22.6 21.3 22.0 20.8 20.2
2014 20.7 21.4 20.9 19.1 19.2 21.0 20.2 19.6 20.0 18.6 17.7

 

Average Weeks Unemployed

33.0%

 


Series Id:           LNS13008275
Seasonally Adjusted
Series title:        (Seas) Average Weeks Unemployed
Labor force status:  Unemployed
Type of data:        Number of weeks
Age:                 16 years and over

average weeks unemployed
Year Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Annual
2000 13.1 12.6 12.7 12.4 12.6 12.3 13.4 12.9 12.2 12.7 12.4 12.5
2001 12.7 12.8 12.8 12.4 12.1 12.7 12.9 13.3 13.2 13.3 14.3 14.5
2002 14.7 15.0 15.4 16.3 16.8 16.9 16.9 16.5 17.6 17.8 17.6 18.5
2003 18.5 18.5 18.1 19.4 19.0 19.9 19.7 19.2 19.5 19.3 19.9 19.8
2004 19.9 20.1 19.8 19.6 19.8 20.5 18.8 18.8 19.4 19.5 19.7 19.4
2005 19.5 19.1 19.5 19.6 18.6 17.9 17.6 18.4 17.9 17.9 17.5 17.5
2006 16.9 17.8 17.1 16.7 17.1 16.6 17.1 17.1 17.1 16.3 16.2 16.1
2007 16.3 16.7 17.8 16.9 16.6 16.5 17.2 17.0 16.3 17.0 17.3 16.6
2008 17.5 16.9 16.5 16.9 16.6 17.1 17.0 17.7 18.6 19.9 18.9 19.9
2009 19.8 20.2 20.9 21.7 22.4 23.9 25.1 25.3 26.6 27.5 28.9 29.7
2010 30.3 29.9 31.6 33.3 33.9 34.5 33.8 33.6 33.4 34.2 33.9 34.8
2011 37.2 37.5 39.2 38.7 39.5 39.7 40.4 40.2 40.2 39.1 40.3 40.7
2012 40.1 40.0 39.4 39.3 39.6 40.0 38.8 39.1 39.4 40.3 39.2 38.0
2013 35.4 36.9 37.0 36.6 36.9 35.7 36.7 37.0 36.8 36.0 37.1 37.1
2014 35.4 37.1 35.6 35.1 34.5 33.5 32.4 31.7 31.5 32.7 33.0

Not In Labor Force

2,109,000


Series Id:                       LNU05026642
Not Seasonally Adjusted
Series title:                    (Unadj) Not in Labor Force, Searched For Work and Available
Labor force status:              Not in labor force
Type of data:                    Number in thousands
Age:                             16 years and over
Job desires/not in labor force:  Want a job now
Reasons not in labor force:      Available to work now

Not In Labor force
Year Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Annual
2000 1207 1281 1219 1216 1113 1142 1172 1097 1166 1044 1100 1125 1157
2001 1295 1337 1109 1131 1157 1170 1232 1364 1335 1398 1331 1330 1266
2002 1532 1423 1358 1397 1467 1380 1507 1456 1501 1416 1401 1432 1439
2003 1598 1590 1577 1399 1428 1468 1566 1665 1544 1586 1473 1483 1531
2004 1670 1691 1643 1526 1533 1492 1557 1587 1561 1647 1517 1463 1574
2005 1804 1673 1588 1511 1428 1583 1516 1583 1438 1414 1415 1589 1545
2006 1644 1471 1468 1310 1388 1584 1522 1592 1299 1478 1366 1252 1448
2007 1577 1451 1385 1391 1406 1454 1376 1365 1268 1364 1363 1344 1395
2008 1729 1585 1352 1414 1416 1558 1573 1640 1604 1637 1947 1908 1614
2009 2130 2051 2106 2089 2210 2176 2282 2270 2219 2373 2323 2486 2226
2010 2539 2527 2255 2432 2223 2591 2622 2370 2548 2602 2531 2609 2487
2011 2800 2730 2434 2466 2206 2680 2785 2575 2511 2555 2591 2540 2573
2012 2809 2608 2352 2363 2423 2483 2529 2561 2517 2433 2505 2614 2516
2013 2443 2588 2326 2347 2164 2582 2414 2342 2302 2283 2096 2427 2360
2014 2592 2303 2168 2160 2130 2028 2178 2141 2226 2192 2109

 

Not In Labor Force Searched For Work and Available, Discouraged Reasons For Not Currently Looking

698,000

Series Id:                       LNU05026645
Not Seasonally Adjusted
Series title:                    (Unadj) Not in Labor Force, Searched For Work and Available, Discouraged Reasons For Not Currently Looking
Labor force status:              Not in labor force
Type of data:                    Number in thousands
Age:                             16 years and over
Job desires/not in labor force:  Want a job now
Reasons not in labor force:      Discouragement over job prospects  (Persons who believe no job is available.)

Year Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Annual
2000 236 267 258 331 280 309 266 203 253 232 236 269 262
2001 301 287 349 349 328 294 310 337 285 331 328 348 321
2002 328 375 330 320 414 342 405 378 392 359 385 403 369
2003 449 450 474 437 482 478 470 503 388 462 457 433 457
2004 432 484 514 492 476 478 504 534 412 429 392 442 466
2005 515 485 480 393 392 476 499 384 362 392 404 451 436
2006 396 386 451 381 323 481 428 448 325 331 349 274 381
2007 442 375 381 399 368 401 367 392 276 320 349 363 369
2008 467 396 401 412 400 420 461 381 467 484 608 642 462
2009 734 731 685 740 792 793 796 758 706 808 861 929 778
2010 1065 1204 994 1197 1083 1207 1185 1110 1209 1219 1282 1318 1173
2011 993 1020 921 989 822 982 1119 977 1037 967 1096 945 989
2012 1059 1006 865 968 830 821 852 844 802 813 979 1068 909
2013 804 885 803 835 780 1027 988 866 852 815 762 917 861
2014 837 755 698 783 697 676 741 775 698 770 698

Total Unemployment Rate U-6

11.4%

Series Id:           LNS13327709
Seasonally Adjusted
Series title:        (seas) Total unemployed, plus all marginally attached workers plus total employed part time for economic reasons, as a percent of all civilian labor force plus all marginally attached workers
Labor force status:  Aggregated totals unemployed
Type of data:        Percent or rate
Age:                 16 years and over
Percent/rates:       Unemployed and mrg attached and pt for econ reas as percent of labor force plus marg attached


Year Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Annual
2000 7.1 7.2 7.1 6.9 7.1 7.0 7.0 7.1 7.0 6.8 7.1 6.9
2001 7.3 7.4 7.3 7.4 7.5 7.9 7.8 8.1 8.7 9.3 9.4 9.6
2002 9.5 9.5 9.4 9.7 9.5 9.5 9.6 9.6 9.6 9.6 9.7 9.8
2003 10.0 10.2 10.0 10.2 10.1 10.3 10.3 10.1 10.4 10.2 10.0 9.8
2004 9.9 9.7 10.0 9.6 9.6 9.5 9.5 9.4 9.4 9.7 9.4 9.2
2005 9.3 9.3 9.1 8.9 8.9 9.0 8.8 8.9 9.0 8.7 8.7 8.6
2006 8.4 8.4 8.2 8.1 8.2 8.4 8.5 8.4 8.0 8.2 8.1 7.9
2007 8.4 8.2 8.0 8.2 8.2 8.3 8.4 8.4 8.4 8.4 8.4 8.8
2008 9.2 9.0 9.1 9.2 9.7 10.1 10.5 10.8 11.0 11.8 12.6 13.6
2009 14.2 15.2 15.8 15.9 16.5 16.5 16.4 16.7 16.7 17.1 17.1 17.1
2010 16.7 17.0 17.1 17.2 16.6 16.4 16.4 16.5 16.8 16.6 16.9 16.6
2011 16.1 16.0 15.9 16.1 15.8 16.1 16.0 16.1 16.3 15.9 15.6 15.2
2012 15.1 15.0 14.5 14.6 14.8 14.8 14.9 14.7 14.7 14.4 14.4 14.4
2013 14.4 14.3 13.8 13.9 13.8 14.2 13.9 13.6 13.6 13.7 13.1 13.1
2014 12.7 12.6 12.7 12.3 12.2 12.1 12.2 12.0 11.8 11.5 11.4

 

Employment Situation Summary

 

Transmission of material in this release is embargoed until                  USDL-14-2184
8:30 a.m. (EST) Friday, December 5, 2014

Technical information:
 Household data:      (202) 691-6378  •  cpsinfo@bls.gov  •  www.bls.gov/cps
 Establishment data:  (202) 691-6555  •  cesinfo@bls.gov  •  www.bls.gov/ces

Media contact:       (202) 691-5902  •  PressOffice@bls.gov


                             THE EMPLOYMENT SITUATION -- NOVEMBER 2014


Total nonfarm payroll employment increased by 321,000 in November, and the unemployment
rate was unchanged at 5.8 percent, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today.
Job gains were widespread, led by growth in professional and business services, retail
trade, health care, and manufacturing.

Household Survey Data

In November, the unemployment rate held at 5.8 percent, and the number of unemployed
persons was little changed at 9.1 million. Over the year, the unemployment rate and
the number of unemployed persons were down by 1.2 percentage points and 1.7 million,
respectively. (See table A-1.)

Among the major worker groups, the unemployment rate for adult men rose to 5.4 percent
in November. The rates for adult women (5.3 percent), teenagers (17.7 percent), whites
(4.9 percent), blacks (11.1 percent), and Hispanics (6.6 percent) showed little change
over the month. The jobless rate for Asians was 4.8 percent (not seasonally adjusted),
little changed from a year earlier. (See tables A-1, A-2, and A-3.)

The number of long-term unemployed (those jobless for 27 weeks or more) was little
changed at 2.8 million in November. These individuals accounted for 30.7 percent of
the unemployed. Over the past 12 months, the number of long-term unemployed declined
by 1.2 million. (See table A-12.)

The civilian labor force participation rate held at 62.8 percent in November and has
been essentially unchanged since April. The employment-population ratio, at 59.2
percent, was unchanged in November but is up by 0.6 percentage point over the year.
(See table A-1.)

The number of persons employed part time for economic reasons (sometimes referred to
as involuntary part-time workers), at 6.9 million, changed little in November. These
individuals, who would have preferred full-time employment, were working part time
because their hours had been cut back or because they were unable to find a full-time
job. (See table A-8.)

In November, 2.1 million persons were marginally attached to the labor force,
essentially unchanged from a year earlier. (The data are not seasonally adjusted.)
These individuals were not in the labor force, wanted and were available for work,
and had looked for a job sometime in the prior 12 months. They were not counted as
unemployed because they had not searched for work in the 4 weeks preceding the
survey. (See table A-16.)

Among the marginally attached, there were 698,000 discouraged workers in November,
little different from a year earlier. (The data are not seasonally adjusted.)
Discouraged workers are persons not currently looking for work because they believe
no jobs are available for them. The remaining 1.4 million persons marginally attached
to the labor force in November had not searched for work for reasons such as school
attendance or family responsibilities. (See table A-16.)

Establishment Survey Data

Total nonfarm payroll employment rose by 321,000 in November, compared with an
average monthly gain of 224,000 over the prior 12 months. In November, job growth
was widespread, led by gains in professional and business services, retail trade,
health care, and manufacturing. (See table B-1.)

Employment in professional and business services increased by 86,000 in November,
compared with an average gain of 57,000 per month over the prior 12 months. Within
the industry, accounting and bookkeeping services added 16,000 jobs in November.
Employment continued to trend up in temporary help services (+23,000), management
and technical consulting services (+7,000), computer systems design and related
services (+7,000), and architectural and engineering services (+5,000).

Employment in retail trade rose by 50,000 in November, compared with an average
gain of 22,000 per month over the prior 12 months. In November, job gains occurred
in motor vehicle and parts dealers (+11,000); clothing and accessories stores
(+11,000); sporting goods, hobby, book, and music stores (+9,000); and nonstore
retailers (+6,000).

Health care added 29,000 jobs over the month. Employment continued to trend up in
offices of physicians (+7,000), home health care services (+5,000), outpatient care
centers (+4,000), and hospitals (+4,000). Over the past 12 months, employment in
health care has increased by 261,000.

In November, manufacturing added 28,000 jobs. Durable goods manufacturers accounted
for 17,000 of the increase, with small gains in most of the component industries.
Employment in nondurable goods increased by 11,000, with plastics and rubber products
(+7,000) accounting for most of the gain. Over the year, manufacturing has added
171,000 jobs, largely in durable goods.

Financial activities added 20,000 jobs in November, with half of the gain in insurance
carriers and related activities. Over the past year, insurance has contributed 70,000
jobs to the overall employment gain of 114,000 in financial activities.

Transportation and warehousing employment increased by 17,000 in November, with a
gain in couriers and messengers (+5,000). Over the past 12 months, transportation
and warehousing has added 143,000 jobs.

Employment in food services and drinking places continued to trend up in November
(+27,000) and has increased by 321,000 over the year.

Construction employment also continued to trend up in November (+20,000). Employment in
specialty trade contractors rose by 21,000, mostly in the residential component. Over
the past 12 months, construction has added 213,000 jobs, with just over half the gain
among specialty trade contractors.

In November, the average workweek for all employees on private nonfarm payrolls rose
by 0.1 hour to 34.6 hours. The manufacturing workweek rose by 0.2 hour to 41.1 hours,
and factory overtime edged up by 0.1 hour to 3.5 hours. The average workweek for
production and nonsupervisory employees on private nonfarm payrolls was unchanged at
33.8 hours. (See tables B-2 and B-7.)

Average hourly earnings for all employees on private nonfarm payrolls rose by 9 cents
to $24.66 in November. Over the year, average hourly earnings have risen by 2.1 percent.
In November, average hourly earnings of private-sector production and nonsupervisory
employees increased by 4 cents to $20.74. (See tables B-3 and B-8.)

The change in total nonfarm payroll employment for September was revised from +256,000
to +271,000, and the change for October was revised from +214,000 to +243,000. With
these revisions, employment gains in September and October combined were 44,000 more
than previously reported.

_____________
The Employment Situation for December is scheduled to be released on Friday,
January 9, 2015, at 8:30 a.m. (EST).



   __________________________________________________________________________________
  |                                                                                  |
  |               Upcoming Changes to the Employment Situation News Release          |
  |                                                                                  |
  |Effective with the release of January 2015 data on February 6, 2015, the U.S.     |
  |Bureau of Labor Statistics will introduce several changes to The Employment       |
  |Situation news release tables.                                                    |
  |                                                                                  |
  |Household survey table A-2 will introduce seasonally adjusted series on the labor |
  |force characteristics of Asians. These series will appear in addition to the not  |
  |seasonally adjusted data for Asians currently displayed in the table. Also, in    |
  |summary table A, the seasonally adjusted unemployment rate for Asians will replace|
  |the not seasonally adjusted series that is currently displayed for the group.     |
  |                                                                                  |
  |Household survey table A-3 will introduce seasonally adjusted series on the labor |
  |force characteristics of Hispanic men age 20 and over, Hispanic women age 20 and  |
  |over, and Hispanic teenagers age 16 to 19. The not seasonally adjusted series for |
  |these groups will continue to be displayed in the table.                          |
  |                                                                                  |
  |The establishment survey will introduce two data series: (1) total nonfarm        |
  |employment, 3-month average change and (2) total private employment, 3-month      |
  |average change. These new series will be added to establishment survey summary    |
  |table B. Additionally, in the employment section of summary table B, the list     |
  |of industries will be expanded to include utilities (currently published in       |
  |table B-1). Also, hours and earnings of production and nonsupervisory employees   |
  |will be removed from summary table B, although these series will continue to be   |
  |published in establishment survey tables B-7 and B-8. A sample of the new summary |
  |table B is available on the BLS website at www.bls.gov/ces/cesnewsumb.pdf.        |
  |__________________________________________________________________________________|




   __________________________________________________________________________________
  |                                                                                  |
  |            Revision of Seasonally Adjusted Household Survey Data                 |
  |                                                                                  |
  |In accordance with usual practice, The Employment Situation news release for      |
  |December 2014, scheduled for January 9, 2015, will incorporate annual revisions in|
  |seasonally adjusted household survey data. Seasonally adjusted data for the most  |
  |recent 5 years are subject to revision.                                           |
  |__________________________________________________________________________________|



 

http://www.bls.gov/news.release/empsit.nr0.htm

 

Employment Situation Summary Table A. Household data, seasonally adjusted

HOUSEHOLD DATA
Summary table A. Household data, seasonally adjusted
[Numbers in thousands]

CategoryNov.
2013Sept.
2014Oct.
2014Nov.
2014Change from:
Oct.
2014-
Nov.
2014

Employment status

 

Civilian noninstitutional population

246,567248,446248,657248,844187

Civilian labor force

155,284155,862156,278156,397119

Participation rate

63.062.762.862.80.0

Employed

144,443146,600147,283147,2874

Employment-population ratio

58.659.059.259.20.0

Unemployed

10,8419,2628,9959,110115

Unemployment rate

7.05.95.85.80.0

Not in labor force

91,28392,58492,37892,44769

Unemployment rates

 

Total, 16 years and over

7.05.95.85.80.0

Adult men (20 years and over)

6.75.35.15.40.3

Adult women (20 years and over)

6.25.55.45.3-0.1

Teenagers (16 to 19 years)

20.820.018.617.7-0.9

White

6.15.14.84.90.1

Black or African American

12.411.010.911.10.2

Asian (not seasonally adjusted)

5.34.35.04.8-

Hispanic or Latino ethnicity

8.76.96.86.6-0.2

Total, 25 years and over

5.84.74.74.70.0

Less than a high school diploma

10.68.47.98.50.6

High school graduates, no college

7.35.35.75.6-0.1

Some college or associate degree

6.45.44.84.90.1

Bachelor’s degree and higher

3.42.93.13.20.1

Reason for unemployment

 

Job losers and persons who completed temporary jobs

5,7314,5304,3584,483125

Job leavers

89082979483844

Reentrants

3,0652,8092,8712,773-98

New entrants

1,1691,1051,0631,0641

Duration of unemployment

 

Less than 5 weeks

2,4392,3832,4732,52956

5 to 14 weeks

2,5852,5082,3122,39078

15 to 26 weeks

1,7421,4161,4171,43114

27 weeks and over

4,0442,9542,9162,815-101

Employed persons at work part time

 

Part time for economic reasons

7,7237,1037,0276,850-177

Slack work or business conditions

4,8694,1624,2144,064-150

Could only find part-time work

2,4992,5622,4472,4536

Part time for noneconomic reasons

18,85819,56119,76920,004235

Persons not in the labor force (not seasonally adjusted)

 

Marginally attached to the labor force

2,0962,2262,1922,109-

Discouraged workers

762698770698-

- Over-the-month changes are not displayed for not seasonally adjusted data.
NOTE: Persons whose ethnicity is identified as Hispanic or Latino may be of any race. Detail for the seasonally adjusted data shown in this table will not necessarily add to totals because of the independent seasonal adjustment of the various series. Updated population controls are introduced annually with the release of January data.

 

 

 

Employment Situation Summary Table B. Establishment data, seasonally adjusted

ESTABLISHMENT DATA
Summary table B. Establishment data, seasonally adjusted
Category Nov.
2013
Sept.
2014
Oct.
2014(p)
Nov.
2014(p)

EMPLOYMENT BY SELECTED INDUSTRY
(Over-the-month change, in thousands)

Total nonfarm

274 271 243 321

Total private

272 249 236 314

Goods-producing

68 36 28 48

Mining and logging

1 6 1 0

Construction

32 18 7 20

Manufacturing

35 12 20 28

Durable goods(1)

19 11 18 17

Motor vehicles and parts

4.7 1.7 2.0 3.0

Nondurable goods

16 1 2 11

Private service-providing(1)

204 213 208 266

Wholesale trade

16.8 2.9 6.1 2.5

Retail trade

22.3 39.9 34.2 50.2

Transportation and warehousing

32.4 7.0 15.3 16.7

Information

1 3 -5 4

Financial activities

-4 14 6 20

Professional and business services(1)

73 66 52 86

Temporary help services

36.6 23.2 19.5 22.7

Education and health services(1)

25 35 37 38

Health care and social assistance

24.4 24.8 31.5 37.2

Leisure and hospitality

37 47 55 32

Other services

-1 0 7 15

Government

2 22 7 7

WOMEN AND PRODUCTION AND NONSUPERVISORY EMPLOYEES(2)
AS A PERCENT OF ALL EMPLOYEES

Total nonfarm women employees

49.5 49.4 49.4 49.3

Total private women employees

48.0 47.9 47.9 47.9

Total private production and nonsupervisory employees

82.6 82.6 82.6 82.6

HOURS AND EARNINGS
ALL EMPLOYEES

Total private

Average weekly hours

34.5 34.5 34.5 34.6

Average hourly earnings

$24.15 $24.54 $24.57 $24.66

Average weekly earnings

$833.18 $846.63 $847.67 $853.24

Index of aggregate weekly hours (2007=100)(3)

99.6 101.4 101.6 102.2

Over-the-month percent change

0.5 0.2 0.2 0.6

Index of aggregate weekly payrolls (2007=100)(4)

114.8 118.7 119.1 120.2

Over-the-month percent change

0.8 0.2 0.3 0.9

HOURS AND EARNINGS
PRODUCTION AND NONSUPERVISORY EMPLOYEES

Total private

Average weekly hours

33.7 33.7 33.8 33.8

Average hourly earnings

$20.30 $20.67 $20.70 $20.74

Average weekly earnings

$684.11 $696.58 $699.66 $701.01

Index of aggregate weekly hours (2002=100)(3)

107.1 109.1 109.6 109.8

Over-the-month percent change

0.5 -0.1 0.5 0.2

Index of aggregate weekly payrolls (2002=100)(4)

145.3 150.6 151.6 152.2

Over-the-month percent change

0.8 -0.1 0.7 0.4

DIFFUSION INDEX(5)
(Over 1-month span)

Total private (264 industries)

66.9 63.4 63.8 69.7

Manufacturing (81 industries)

65.4 59.3 64.2 63.0

Footnotes
(1) Includes other industries, not shown separately.
(2) Data relate to production employees in mining and logging and manufacturing, construction employees in construction, and nonsupervisory employees in the service-providing industries.
(3) The indexes of aggregate weekly hours are calculated by dividing the current month’s estimates of aggregate hours by the corresponding annual average aggregate hours.
(4) The indexes of aggregate weekly payrolls are calculated by dividing the current month’s estimates of aggregate weekly payrolls by the corresponding annual average aggregate weekly payrolls.
(5) Figures are the percent of industries with employment increasing plus one-half of the industries with unchanged employment, where 50 percent indicates an equal balance between industries with increasing and decreasing employment.
(p) Preliminary

 

EMBARGOED UNTIL RELEASE AT 8:30 A.M. EST, TUESDAY, NOVEMBER 25, 2014
BEA 14-59

* See the navigation bar at the right side of the news release text for links to data tables,
contact personnel and their telephone numbers, and supplementary materials.

Lisa S. Mataloni: (202) 606-5304 (GDP) gdpniwd@bea.gov
Kate Shoemaker: (202) 606-5564 (Profits) cpniwd@bea.gov
Jeannine Aversa: (202) 606-2649 (News Media)
National Income and Product Accounts
Gross Domestic Product: Third Quarter 2014 (Second Estimate)
Corporate Profits: Third Quarter 2014 (Preliminary Estimate)
      Real gross domestic product -- the value of the production of goods and services in the United
States, adjusted for price changes -- increased at an annual rate of 3.9 percent in the third quarter of
2014, according to the "second" estimate released by the Bureau of Economic Analysis.  In the second
quarter, real GDP increased 4.6 percent.

      The GDP estimate released today is based on more complete source data than were available for
the "advance" estimate issued last month.  In the advance estimate, the increase in real GDP was 3.5
percent.  With the second estimate for the third quarter, private inventory investment decreased less than
previously estimated, and both personal consumption expenditures (PCE) and nonresidential fixed
investment increased more.  In contrast, exports increased less than previously estimated (see
"Revisions" on page 3).

      The increase in real GDP in the third quarter reflected positive contributions from PCE,
nonresidential fixed investment, federal government spending, exports, residential fixed investment, and
state and local government spending that were partly offset by a negative contribution from private
inventory investment.  Imports, which are a subtraction in the calculation of GDP, decreased.

      The deceleration in the percent change in real GDP reflected a downturn in private inventory
investment and decelerations in exports, in nonresidential fixed investment, in state and local
government spending, in PCE, and in residential fixed investment that were partly offset by a downturn
in imports and an upturn in federal government spending.

      The price index for gross domestic purchases, which measures prices paid by U.S. residents,
increased 1.4 percent in the third quarter, 0.1 percentage point more than in the advance estimate; this
index increased 2.0 percent in the second quarter.  Excluding food and energy prices, the price index for
gross domestic purchases increased 1.6 percent in the third quarter, compared with an increase of 1.7
percent in the second.


_____
FOOTNOTE.  Quarterly estimates are expressed at seasonally adjusted annual rates, unless otherwise
specified.  Quarter-to-quarter dollar changes are differences between these published estimates.  Percent
changes are calculated from unrounded data and are annualized.  "Real" estimates are in chained (2009)
dollars.  Price indexes are chain-type measures.

This news release is available on BEA's Web site along with the Technical Note and Highlights related
to this release.  For information on revisions, see "The Revisions to GDP, GDI, and Their
Major Components."
_____

      Real personal consumption expenditures increased 2.2 percent in the third quarter, compared
with an increase of 2.5 percent in the second.  Durable goods increased 8.7 percent, compared with an
increase of 14.1 percent.  Nondurable goods increased 2.2 percent, the same increase as in the second
quarter.  Services increased 1.2 percent, compared with an increase of 0.9 percent.

      Real nonresidential fixed investment increased 7.1 percent in the third quarter, compared with an
increase of 9.7 percent in the second.  Investment in nonresidential structures increased 1.1 percent,
compared with an increase of 12.6 percent.  Investment in equipment increased 10.7 percent, compared
with an increase of 11.2 percent.  Investment in intellectual property products increased 6.4 percent,
compared with an increase of 5.5 percent.  Real residential fixed investment increased 2.7 percent,
compared with an increase of 8.8 percent.

      Real exports of goods and services increased 4.9 percent in the third quarter, compared with an
increase of 11.1 percent in the second.  Real imports of goods and services decreased 0.7 percent, in
contrast to an increase of 11.3 percent.

      Real federal government consumption expenditures and gross investment increased 9.9 percent
in the third quarter, in contrast to a decrease of 0.9 percent in the second.  National defense increased
16.0 percent, compared with an increase of 0.9 percent.  Nondefense increased 0.4 percent, in contrast to
a decrease of 3.8 percent.  Real state and local government consumption expenditures and gross
investment increased 0.8 percent, compared with an increase of 3.4 percent.

      The change in real private inventories subtracted 0.12 percentage point from the third-quarter
change in real GDP after adding 1.42 percentage points to the second-quarter change.  Private
businesses increased inventories $79.1 billion in the third quarter, following increases of $84.8 billion in
the second quarter and $35.2 billion in the first.

      Real final sales of domestic product -- GDP less change in private inventories -- increased 4.1
percent in the third quarter, compared with an increase of 3.2 percent in the second.


Gross domestic purchases

      Real gross domestic purchases -- purchases by U.S. residents of goods and services wherever
produced -- increased 3.0 percent in the third quarter, compared with an increase of 4.8 percent in the
second.


Gross national product

      Real gross national product -- the value of the goods and services produced by the labor and
property supplied by U.S. residents -- increased 3.8 percent in the third quarter, compared with an
increase of 4.6 percent in the second.  GNP includes, and GDP excludes, net receipts of income from the
rest of the world, which decreased $1.6 billion in the third quarter, in contrast to an increase of $1.4
billion in the second; in the third quarter, receipts decreased $1.1 billion, and payments increased $0.5
billion.


Current-dollar GDP

      Current-dollar GDP -- the market value of the production of goods and services in the United
States -- increased 5.3 percent, or $227.0 billion, in the third quarter to a level of $17,555.2 billion.  In
the second quarter, current-dollar GDP increased 6.8 percent, or $284.2 billion.


Gross domestic income

      Real gross domestic income (GDI), which measures the value of the production of goods and
services in the United States as the costs incurred and the incomes earned on that production, increased
4.5 percent in the third quarter, compared with an increase of 4.0 percent (revised) in the second.  For a
given quarter, the estimates of GDP and GDI may differ for a variety of reasons, including the
incorporation of largely independent source data.  However, over longer time spans, the estimates of
GDP and GDI tend to follow similar patterns of change.


Revisions

      The upward revision to the percent change in real GDP primarily reflected upward revisions to
private inventory investment, to personal consumption expenditures, and to nonresidential fixed
investment that were partly offset by a downward revision to exports and an upward revision to imports.


                                         Advance Estimate  Second Estimate

                                     (Percent change from preceding quarter)
Real GDP...............................         3.5            3.9
Current-dollar GDP.....................         4.9            5.3
Real GDI...............................         --             4.5
Gross domestic purchases price index...         1.3            1.4
Corporate Profits


Profits from current production

      Profits from current production (corporate profits with inventory valuation adjustment (IVA) and
capital consumption adjustment (CCAdj)) increased $43.8 billion in the third quarter, compared with an
increase of $164.1 billion in the second.

      Profits of domestic financial corporations increased $20.3 billion in the third quarter, compared
with an increase of $33.3 billion in the second.  Profits of domestic nonfinancial corporations increased
$22.5 billion, compared with an increase of $134.3 billion.  The rest-of-the-world component of profits
increased $1.0 billion, in contrast to a decrease of $3.6 billion.  This measure is calculated as the
difference between receipts from the rest of the world and payments to the rest of the world.  In the third
quarter, receipts were unchanged, and payments decreased $1.0 billion.

      Taxes on corporate income decreased $4.8 billion in the third quarter, in contrast to an increase
of $45.7 billion in the second.  Profits after tax with IVA and CCAdj increased $48.6 billion, compared
with an increase of $118.4 billion.

      Dividends decreased $3.9 billion in the third quarter, compared with a decrease of $0.5 billion in
the second.  Undistributed profits increased $52.5 billion, compared with an increase of $118.8 billion.
Net cash flow with IVA -- the internal funds available to corporations for investment -- increased $25.1
billion, compared with an increase of $133.4 billion.

	The IVA and CCAdj are adjustments that convert inventory withdrawals and depreciation of
fixed assets reported on a tax-return, historical-cost basis to the current-cost economic measures used in
the national income and product accounts.  The IVA increased $16.8 billion in the third quarter,
compared with an increase of $11.9 billion in the second.  The CCAdj increased $1.2 billion, in contrast
to a decrease of $0.8 billion.


Gross value added of nonfinancial domestic corporate business

      In the third quarter, real gross value added of nonfinancial corporations increased, and profits per
unit of real gross value added increased.  The increase in unit profits reflected an increase in unit prices
that was partly offset by an increase in unit nonlabor costs; unit labor costs were unchanged.


                                     *          *          *

      BEA's national, international, regional, and industry estimates; the Survey of Current Business;
and BEA news releases are available without charge on BEA's Web site at www.bea.gov.  By visiting
the site, you can also subscribe to receive free e-mail summaries of BEA releases and announcements.


                                     *          *          *


                     Next release -- December 23, 2014 at 8:30 A.M. EST for:
                  Gross Domestic Product:  Third Quarter 2014 (Third Estimate)
                    Corporate Profits:  Third Quarter 2014 (Revised Estimate)


                                     *          *          *


Release dates in 2015


Gross Domestic Product

                 2014: IV and 2014 annual     2015: I          2015: II          2015: III

Advance....           January 30              April 29         July 30           October 29
Second.....           February 27             May 29           August 27         November 24
Third......           March 27                June 24          September 25      December 22


Corporate Profits

Preliminary...        ..                      May 29           August 27         November 24
Revised.......        March 27                June 24          September 25      December 22

http://bea.gov/newsreleases/national/gdp/gdpnewsrelease.htm

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Happy Birthday Little Richard — Videos

Posted on December 5, 2014. Filed under: Blogroll, Business, Communications, Culture, Dance, Freedom, Friends, media, Music, People, Radio, Raves, Talk Radio, Video, Wisdom | Tags: , , , , , , , |

little-richard (1)little+richard+08little-richard1Little Richard 1956

little-richard

lr-3little-richard_2418184k

620-singer-little-richard-december-birthday-milestone

Little Richard Long Tall Sally – Tutti Frutti

Lucille♪

Little Richard – “Long Tall Sally” – from “Don’t Knock The Rock” – HQ 1956

LITTLE RICHARD – Long Tall Sally

Little Richard – Whole Lotta Shakin’ Going On – It’s Little Richard 1963

It’s Little Richard. 1964 UK TV Show

Little Richard Live in France 1966 Part 1

Little Richard – Live In France . 1966

Little Richard – Tutti Frutti [Live]

Little Richard – Tutti Frutti

Little Richard – Keep a Knockin’ 1990

Little Richard on Sally Jessy Raphael (1994)

Little Richard on Tom Snyder (1997)

Little Richard – Good Golly Miss Molly (Muhammad Ali’s 50th Birthday)

Little Richard Inducts Otis Redding into the Hall of Fame

Little Richard is The King of Rock’n’Roll

Little Richard Funny Moments Part 1

Little Richard Funny Moments Part 2

Little Richard The Dick Cavett Show 1970 Lucille Lawdy Miss Clawdy + Interview

Little Richard talks about Michael Jackson on Joan Rivers Show

Little Richard Interview with Bill Boggs

Little Richard – ‘Speaking Freely’

LIttle Richard Being Funny

Little Richard Movie 2000

Little Richard

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Little Richard
Little Richard in 2007.jpg
Little Richard performing in Austin, Texas, in March 2007

Background informationBirth nameRichard Wayne PennimanBornDecember 5, 1932 (age 82)
Macon, Georgia, United StatesGenresR&B, rock and roll, gospel,soulOccupation(s)Singer-songwriterInstrumentsVocals, pianoYears active1947–presentLabelsRCA Victor, Peacock,Specialty, End, Goldisc Records, Little Star Records,Mercury, Atlantic, Vee-Jay,Modern, Okeh, Brunswick,Reprise, K-Tel, Warner Bros.,DisneyAssociated actsBilly Wright, Larry Williams,Don Covay, Billy Preston, Jimi Hendrix

Richard Wayne Penniman (born December 5, 1932), known by his stage name Little Richard, is an American recording artist, songwriter, and musician. He has been an influential figure in popular music and culture for over six decades. Penniman’s most celebrated work dates from the mid-1950s where his dynamic music and charismatic showmanship laid the foundation for rock and roll. His music also had a pivotal impact on the formation of other popular music genres, including soul and funk. Penniman influenced numerous singers and musicians across musical genres from rock to rap.

Penniman has been honored by many institutions, including inductions into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and theSongwriters Hall of Fame. He is the recipient of Lifetime Achievement Awards from The Recording Academy and theRhythm and Blues Foundation. Penniman’s “Tutti Frutti” (1955) was included in the Library of Congress’ National Recording Registry in 2010, claiming the “unique vocalizing over the irresistible beat announced a new era in music.”

Early life

Little Richard was born Richard Wayne Penniman in Macon, Georgia, on December 5, 1932, the third-eldest of twelve. His parents were Leva Mae (née Stewart) and Charles “Bud” Penniman. His father was a church deacon who sold bootlegged moonshine on the side and owned his own nightclub, the Tip In Inn.[1][2] His mother was a member of Macon’s New Hope Baptist Church.[3] Initially, Penniman’s first name was supposed to have been “Ricardo” but an error resulted in “Richard” instead.[1][4] The Penniman children were raised in the poor neighborhood of Macon called Pleasant Hill.[3] He was nicknamed “Lil’ Richard” by family due to his small and skinny frame as a child. A mischievous child who played pranks on neighbors, Penniman began singing in church at a young age.[5][6] Possibly due to complications at birth, Penniman had a slight deformity that left one of his legs shorter than the other. This produced an unusual gait, for which he was mocked over its allegedly effeminate appearance.[7]

Penniman’s family was highly religious, joining various A.M.E., Baptist and Pentecostal churches, with some family members becoming ministers. Penniman enjoyed the Pentecostal churches the most due to its charismatic worship and live music.[8] He later recalled that people in his neighborhood during segregation sang gospel songs throughout the day to keep a positive outlook because “there was so much poverty, so much prejudice in those days.”[9] Penniman had observed that people sang “to feel their connection with God” and to wash their trials and burdens away.[10] Gifted with a loud singing voice, Penniman recalled that he was “always changing the key upwards” and that they once stopped him from singing in church for “screaming and hollering” so loud, earning him the nickname “War Hawk”.[11]

Penniman’s initial musical influences were gospel performers, such as Brother Joe May, Sister Rosetta Tharpe, Mahalia Jackson and Marion Williams. May, who as a singing evangelist was known as the “Thunderbolt of the Middle West” due to his phenomenal range and vocal power, inspired the boy to become a preacher.[12][13] Penniman attended Macon’s Hudson High School where he was a below-average student. His musical talent, however, was recognized there when he learned to play the alto saxophone. Penniman’s mother recalled how Richard was “always musical” and that when he was young, he would always “beat on the steps of the house, and on tin cans and pots and pans, or whatever”, while singing.[14] She also recalled that Richard was so quick at learning to play the saxophone that he was allowed to play with the school’s marching band immediately.[14] While in high school, Penniman obtained a part-time job at the Macon City Auditoriumfor local secular and gospel concert promoter Clint Brantley. Penniman sold Coca-Cola to crowds during concerts of star performers of the day, such as Cab Calloway, Lucky Millinder and his favorite singer, Sister Rosetta Tharpe.[15]

Music career

Beginnings

On October 27, 1947, Sister Rosetta Tharpe heard 14-year-old Penniman singing two of her gospel recordings before her concert at the Macon City Auditorium. Tharpe was so impressed that she invited him to sing onstage during the concert.[15] Clint Brantley recalled that Penniman approached him before the show, announcing that Tharpe was allowing him to open the show. Brantley, as the promoter, told him he could not. However, when the curtain lifted, Penniman began to sing and surprised Brantley with his vocal ability. The crowd cheered and Tharpe paid him for his performance. Penniman was hooked on performing for a living after that.[16] He began singing with traveling shows that came through town and was losing interest in school. He would sing to draw people to the local town prophet and spiritualist, Doctor Nubilio, who wore a turban, a colorful cape and carried a black stick and something that people came to see which Nubilio called “the devil’s child” – a dried up body of a baby with claw feet like a bird and horns on its head. Nubilio told Penniman that he was “gonna be famous” but that he would have to “go where the grass is greener.”[17] Due to problems at home and school and associations in the community, Penniman left and joined Dr. Hudson’s Medicine Show in 1948, performing “Caldonia“.[17] Penniman recalled the song was the first secular R&B song he learned due to his family’s strict rules against playing R&B music, which they considered “devil music”.[18] Penniman soon joined his first musical band, Buster Brown’s Orchestra. While performing with the band, he began using the name Little Richard.[19] After his tenure with the band ended in 1950, Penniman began performing for various vaudeville groups including Sugarfoot Sam from Alabam, the Tidy Jolly Steppers, the King Brothers Circus and Broadway Follies, earning a reputation as a drag performer.[20] Around this time, Penniman began listening more to R&B and frequented Atlanta clubs where he witnessed Roy Brown and Billy Wright. Heavily influenced by Wright’s flamboyant persona and showmanship, Penniman began performing as a solo artist as part of the chitlin’ circuit.[21] Penniman gained notoriety for high-energy onstage antics during live performances.[22] He eventually befriended Wright during an Atlanta performance in 1950.[23]

In 1951, Wright put Penniman in contact with his manager, Zenas Sears, a local deejay. Sears recorded Penniman at his station backed by Wright’s band. The recordings led to a contract that year with RCA Victor.[24] Penniman recorded a total of eight sides for RCA, including the blues ballad, “Every Hour”, which became his first single and a hit in the Georgia area.[24] The release of “Every Hour” improved his relationship with his father, who began regularly performing the song at his nightclub.[24] After its release, Penniman fronted Perry Welch and His Orchestra, playing at clubs and army bases for $100 a week.[25] Penniman learned how to play boogie-woogie piano from teenage musician Esquerita around this time.[26] Penniman left RCA Victor in February 1952 after his records failed to catch on. That same month, his father was suddenly killed after a confrontation outside his club. Penniman, struggling with poverty, settled for work as a dishwasher for Greyhound Lines and hired Clint Brantley as his manager.[27] He formed a band called the Tempo Toppers that year and began to perform as part of blues package tours in clubs across the south, such as New Orleans’ Club Tijuana and Houston’s Club Matinee.[28][29] With the Tempo Toppers, Penniman signed with Don Robey‘sPeacock Records in February 1953, recording eight sides, including four with Johnny Otis and his band that were unreleased at the time.[30] [31] Penniman had a contentious relationship with Robey and soon found himself disenchanted with the record business and with his group, leaving Peacock and disbanding the Tempo Toppers. That same year, Penniman formed a hard-driving R&B band, the Upsetters, which included drummer Charles Connor and saxophonist Wilbert “Lee Diamond” Smith, which toured under Brantley’s management.[32][33][34] The Upsetters began to tour successfully, even without a bass player on songs, forcing drummer Connor to thump “real hard” on his bass drum in order to get a “bass fiddle effect.”[32]

Under the suggestion of Lloyd Price, Penniman sent a two-song demo for Price’s label, Specialty Records, in February 1955. Time passed before Penniman got a call to record for the label.[35] Art Rupe, owner of Specialty Records, loaned Penniman money to buy out his Peacock contract and Rupe set him up to work with producer Robert “Bumps” Blackwell.[36] Upon hearing the demo, Blackwell felt Penniman was Specialty’s answer to Ray Charles. Penniman told Blackwell he preferred the sound of Fats Domino. As a result, Penniman began recording at Cosimo Matassa‘s J&M Studios in New Orleans that September, recording there with several of Domino’s session musicians including drummer Earl Palmer and saxophonist Lee Allen.[37] Initial cuts failed to produce anything to inspire huge sales and Penniman and his producer took a break at a club called the Dew Drop Inn. While there, Penniman performed a risqué song he had improvised from his days on the club circuit called “Tutti Frutti“.[38] The song’s a cappella introduction was based off a drum rhythm Penniman had devised. Blackwell felt the song had hit potential and hired songwriter Dorothy LaBostrie to replace some of Penniman’s sexual lyrics with less controversial words.[39][40] Recorded in three takes in September 1955, “Tutti Frutti” was released as a single in November.[41]

Initial success and conversion

A lot of songs I sang to crowds first to watch their reaction. That’s how I knew they’d hit.

Little Richard[42]

“Tutti Frutti” became an instant hit, reaching No. 2 on Billboard magazine’s Rhythm and Blues Best-Sellers chart and crossing over to the pop charts in both the United States and overseas in the United Kingdom. It reached No. 17 on the Billboard Top 100 in America and No. 29 on the British singles chart, eventually selling a million copies.[22][43] Penniman’s next hit single, “Long Tall Sally” (1956), became his first to reach No. 1 on the R&B chart and the first to reach the top ten of the pop charts in both America and Britain. Like “Tutti Frutti”, it sold over a million copies. Following his success, Penniman built up his backup band, The Upsetters, with the addition of saxophonists Clifford “Gene” Burks and leader Grady Gaines, bassist Olsie “Baysee” Robinson and guitarist Nathaniel “Buster” Douglas.[44] Penniman began performing on package tours across the United States, often appearing last, where he would steal the show. Art Rupe described the differences between Penniman and a similar hitmaker of the early rock and roll period by stating that, while “the similarities between Little Richard and Fats Domino for recording purposes were close”, Penniman would sometimes stand up at the piano while he was recording and that onstage, where Domino was “plodding, very slow”, Penniman was “very dynamic, completely uninhibited, unpredictable, wild. So the band took on the ambience of the vocalist.”[45] During a period of racial tension in the United States, Penniman attracted mixed-race audiences at a time when public places were divided into “white” and “colored” domains. H.B. Barnum later explained that Penniman “opened the door. He brought the races together”.[46] Prior to Penniman, audiences in musical shows were either “all black or all white and no one else could come in.”[46] Penniman’s success enabled audiences of both races to enter the building, albeit still segregated (e.g. blacks on the balcony and whites on the main floor). By the end of Penniman’s performances, however, the audiences would come together to dance.[47] Despite broadcasts on TV from local supremacist groups such as the North Alabama White Citizens Council warning how rock and roll “brings the races together”, Penniman’s popularity was helping to shatter shibboleths that held that black performers could not successfully perform at “white-only venues”, especially in the South where racism was most overt.[48]

Penniman’s show, according to Barnum, was the first rock and roll show to use spotlights and flicker lights, which had been a show business tradition, accentuating Penniman’s innovative use of colorful capes, blouse shirts, makeup and suits studded with multi-colored precious stones and sequins.[49] Penniman’s onstage antics often included running on and off the stage, lifting his leg while playing his piano, and jumping up and down onstage and atop the piano, bringing audiences into a frenzy.[50] Fans reacted in similar and sometimes extreme ways. During Penniman’s show at Baltimore’s Royal Theatre in June 1956, several fans had to be restrained from jumping off the balcony. Cops stopped the show twice to prevent fans who had rushed the stage from ripping souvenirs off of Penniman.[51] During the same show, a woman threw a pair of her undergarments onstage at Penniman, leading other female fans to repeat the action.[51]

Penniman had nine hits in America in 1956 and five in Britain, with recordings such as “Slippin’ and Slidin’“, “Rip It Up” “Ready Teddy“, “The Girl Can’t Help It” and “Lucille“. Most of Penniman’s earlier hits inspired covers by the likes of Pat Boone, Elvis Presley and Bill Haley. Described as having “electrifying movie-star looks”, Penniman accepted brief roles in movies such as Don’t Knock the Rock, Mister Rock and Roll and The Girl Can’t Help It.[52] His success continued in 1957 with international hits such as “Jenny, Jenny” and “Keep A-Knockin’“. Penniman scored further hit singles such as “Good Golly Miss Molly“, eventually scoring 18 hit singles in less than three years.[53][54]

“Good Golly, Miss Molly”, 45 rpm recording on Specialty Records

In May 1957, Penniman released his first album, Here’s Little Richard, which reached No. 13 on the Billboard Top LPs chart, then a rare feat for a rock and roll artist. Penniman’s success made him a millionaire and in late 1956, he settled in Los Angeles, purchasing a mansion in a wealthy section of the city, where he lived next door to boxer Joe Louis.[55] He had engaged in a serious romance with Audrey Robinson, then a teenage college student and later a stripper under the stage name Lee Angel.[56] In October 1957, Penniman embarked on a package tour in Australia with Gene Vincent and Eddie Cochran. During the middle of the tour, he shocked the public by announcing his decision to follow a life in the ministry.[57]Penniman later explained that during a flight from Melbourne to Sydney that he had seen the plane’s red hot engines and felt angels were holding it up.[58] During the Sydney performance, Penniman saw a bright red fireball flying across the sky above him and was deeply shaken.[58] He took the event, later revealed as the launching of the first artificial Earth satelliteSputnik 1, as a sign from God to repent from performing secular music and his wild lifestyle and enter the ministry.[57]Returning to the states ten days early, Penniman later learned that his original return flight had crashed into the Pacific Ocean solidifying his belief he was doing as God wanted.[59] After a performance at the Apollo Theater and a recording session with Specialty later that month, Penniman enrolled at Oakwood College in Huntsville, Alabama, to studytheology.[60][61] Fueling his decision to leave the music business was Penniman’s feeling that he hadn’t received proper remuneration from Specialty.[62] Upon ending his contract with Specialty in 1959, Penniman reluctantly agreed to relinquish any royalties for his material.[63] In 1958, he formed the Little Richard Evangelistic Team, traveling across the country to preach.[64] A month after his conversion, while speaking at an evangelical convention in November 1957, Penniman met Ernestine Campbell, a secretary from Washington, D.C. He married her on July 11, 1959.[65]

Around this time, Penniman began recording gospel and had some chart success with songs such as “He’s Not Just a Soldier” and “Crying in the Chapel”. Another gospel single, “He Got What He Wanted”, reached the top 40 in the UK.[66] Childhood hero Mahalia Jackson acknowledged his gospel efforts after hearing him sing at Mount Moriah Baptist Church in Los Angeles.[67] After working with Penniman on the Mercury album King of the Gospel Singers, Quincy Jones remarked in 1984 that his performance in the studio impressed him more than any other artist with whom he had worked.[68]

Return to secular music

I heard so much about the audience reaction, I thought there must be some exaggeration. But it was all true. He drove the whole house into a complete frenzy … I couldn’t believe the power of Little Richard onstage. He was amazing.

Mick Jagger[69]

In 1962, concert promoter Don Arden convinced Penniman to tour Europe after telling him his records were still selling well there. Arden booked him as the headline artist with Sam Cooke second on the bill.[70] Penniman performed gospel material at the first show without Cooke opening due to the delay of his arrival, receiving a tepid reaction. After Cooke opened the second show with vigorous applause from the crowd, Penniman and his organist Billy Preston warmed up in darkness before launching into “Long Tall Sally”, resulting in hysterical responses. Penniman’s shows received similar responses wherever he would perform, including a show at Mansfield‘s Granada Theatre, which closed early due to fans rushing the stage.[71]Wanting to capitalize on Penniman’s headline-grabbing performances, Beatles manager Brian Epstein asked Penniman and Arden to allow his newly recorded band to open for Penniman on some tour dates to which they agreed, first opening at New Brighton‘s Tower Ballroom that October.[72] The following month, the Beatles opened for Penniman at the Star Club inHamburg.[73] During this time, Penniman advised the group on how to perform his songs and taught Paul McCartney his trademark vocalizations.[73] Back in the U.S., Penniman recorded six rock and roll songs with the Upsetters for Little Star Records, under the name “World Famous Upsetters”, allowing him to keep his options open in the ministry.

Penniman returned to the UK the following fall, with the Rolling Stones as openers.[74] At the end of that tour, he starred in his own special, The Little Richard Spectacular, for Granada Television. The special became a ratings success and led to two rebroadcasts following over 60,000 fan letters. Footage of the special was shown around the world, highlighting the frenzy associated with rock and roll.[75] In 1964, Penniman returned briefly to Specialty and recorded five songs, including the charted single, “Bama Lama Bama Loo”, which reached the top 20 in the UK but only made 82 in the US.[76] Later that year, he signed with Vee-Jay Records and issued the album Little Richard Is Back (And There’s a Whole Lotta Shakin’ Goin’ On!). The album failed to catch on domestically, despite a televised performance of the single “Whole Lotta Shakin’ Goin’ On” on Shindig! that drew wild responses from audience members. By September 1964, Jimi Hendrix had joined the Upsetters band, as a full member.[77] In December, Jimi and some ’50s band members joined Richard in New York for a session of remakes. The most successful collaboration between Little Richard and Hendrix came in the following year, also in New York, when Hendrix, Billy Preston, and Penniman recorded the soul ballad “I Don’t Know What You’ve Got (But It’s Got Me)”, which became a number 12 R&B hit.[78][nb 1] Penniman and Hendrix clashed over tardiness, wardrobe and Hendrix’s stage antics and as a result, in July 1965, Penniman’s brother Robert fired him.[80] That same year, Penniman attempted to set up his own record label but only cut two unreleased tracks. Instead he signed with Modern Records, which resulted in a very agreeable string of rock and soul singles but yielded just one chart-maker, “Do You Feel It?”. He left that label in early 1966 for Okeh Records. Okeh paired Penniman musically with his friend from the mid-1950s, Larry Williams, who produced two albums for him in 1966 and 1967; the first being a studio album, The Explosive Little Richard, which generated the modest hit singles, “Poor Dog” and “Commandments of Love”, and the second, Little Richard’s Greatest Hits: Recorded Live!, which returned him to the pop album charts for the first time in ten years, as well hitting number 28 on the Hot R&B LPs chart.[81][82][83] Williams also acted as the music director for Penniman’s live performances at the Okeh Club in Los Angeles amid the Okeh period, during which time the demand for Penniman’s appearances increased greatly.[84] Leaving Okeh in late-1967, Penniman briefly recorded with Brunswick but left shortly after his final session.

Penniman in 1967

Penniman struggled when he returned to secular music in the 1960s. He often complained to producers in the 1960s that he felt unappreciated as producers pushed him towards a horn-oriented Motown sound and felt he wasn’t treated with appropriate respect.[85] Penniman often performed in dingy clubs and lounges with little support from his label. Penniman adapted a wilder flamboyant and androgynous image that, while a hit with club audiences, was a problem for labels attempting to promote him to conservative R&B buyers.[86] Angered by his decision to “backslide” from his ministry, clergymen in the South forced radio disk jockeys to ignore Penniman’s work.[87] His insistence on performing in front of mixed audiences prevented him from receiving radio time in the areas of Los Angeles affected by the Watts Riots.[88] Despite recording and public relations struggles, according to hisSongwriters Hall of Fame biography, he had sold over 32 million records worldwide by 1968.[89] Focusing on live performances rather than recordings at the end of the 1960s, Penniman found success with performances in casinos and resorts in Las Vegas, New York City and Los Angeles. Penniman returned to the national spotlight in 1969 as a performer at the Atlantic City Pop Festival, where he stole the show from top performers such as Janis Joplin; he did the same to headliner John Lennon at the Toronto Pop Festival. These successes brought Penniman to talk shows such as the Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson and the Dick Cavett Show, making him a major celebrity again.[90]

Following this, Penniman signed with Reprise Records in 1970, releasing the album, The Rill Thing, which included the charted singles “Freedom Blues” and “Greenwood, Mississippi”. Penniman’s follow-ups for Reprise failed to produce similar success and Penniman spent much of the decade performing as a guest instrumentalist on sessions with rockers such as Delaney and Bonnie, Joey Covington and Joe Walsh. The sessions for Canned Heat‘s “Rockin’ with the King” (1972) and Bachman-Turner Overdrive‘s “Take It Like a Man” (1976) resulted in chart successes. Penniman and three of his brothers formed a management company, Bud Hole Incorporated, around this time.[91] Leaving Reprise in 1973, he charted for independent labels including a Green Mountain Records single, “In the Middle of the Night”, which proceeds went to charity following a string of tornadoes that damaged 12 states.[92] Three years later, the Mainstream Records single “Call My Name” was distributed by Motown but barely charted in 1976. That same year, Penniman re-recorded 18 of his classic hits in Nashville for K-Tel Records, with a single featuring new versions of “Good Golly Miss Molly” and “Rip It Up” reaching the UK singles chart.[93] Following over ten years of drug and alcohol abuse and a string of recent personal tragedies, Penniman quit rock and roll music again in 1977 and returned to evangelism, releasing one gospel album, God’s Beautiful City, in 1979.[94]

Comeback

In 1984, Penniman filed a $112 million lawsuit against Specialty Records, Art Rupe and his publishing company Venice Music and ATV Music for not paying him royalties after he left the label in 1959.[95] The suit would be settled out of court in 1986.[96] According to some reports, Michael Jackson gave Penniman monetary compensation from his work when he co-owned the Beatles and Penniman’s songs with Sony-ATV.[97] In 1985, Charles White released Penniman’s authorized biography, Quasar of Rock: The Life and Times of Little Richard, which returned Penniman to the spotlight due to the book’s subject matter.[98] Penniman returned to show business in what Rolling Stone would refer to as a “formidable comeback” following the book’s release.[98]

Little Richard, interviewed during the 60th Annual Academy Awards, 1988

Reconciling his roles as evangelist and rock and roll musician for the first time, Penniman stated that the genre could be used for good or evil.[99] After accepting a role in the film Down and Out in Beverly Hills, Penniman and Billy Preston penned the faith-based rock and roll song, “Great Gosh A’Mighty” for its soundtrack.[99] Penniman won critical acclaim for his film role and the song found success on the American and British charts.[99] The hit led to the release of the album Lifetime Friend (1986) on Warner Bros. Records, with songs deemed “messages in rhythm” that included a gospel rap track.[100] In addition to a version of “Great Gosh A’Mighty”, cut in England, the album featured two UK charted singles, “Somebody’s Comin'” and “Operator”. Penniman spent much of the rest of the decade guesting on TV shows and appearing in films, winning new fans with what was referred to as his “unique comedic timing”.[101] In 1989, Penniman provided rhythmic preaching and background vocals on the extended live version of the U2/B.B. King hit “When Love Comes To Town“. That same year, Penniman returned to singing his classic hits following a performance of “Lucille” at a Cher-hosted AIDS benefit concert.[102]

In 1990, Penniman contributed a spoken-word rap on Living Colour‘s hit song, “Elvis Is Dead“, from their album Time’s Up.[103][104] The following year, he was one of the featured performers on the hit single and video “Voices That Care” that was produced to help boost the morale of U.S. troops involved in Operation Desert Storm. He also recorded a rock and roll version of “The Itsy Bitsy Spider” that year that led to a deal with Disney Records, resulting in the release of a hit 1992 children’s album, Shake It All About. Throughout the 1990s, Penniman performed around the world and appeared on TV, film, and tracks with other artists, including Jon Bon Jovi, Elton John and Solomon Burke. In 1992, yet another album of remakes was released, this time with Richard and Japanese guitar hero, Takanaka. Included in the band were swamp guitarist Travis Wammack and his drummer son Monkee, members of Richard’s then current touring band.

Later years

In 2000, Penniman’s life was dramatized for the biopic Little Richard, which focused on his early years including his heyday, religious conversion and return to secular music in the early 1960s. Penniman was played by actor Leon, who earned a NAACP Image Award nomination for his role as the musician. In 2002, Penniman contributed to the Johnny Cash tribute album, Kindred Spirits: A Tribute to the Songs of Johnny Cash. In 2006, Penniman was featured in a popular advertisement for the GEICO brand.[105] Then, a 2005 recording of his duet vocals with Jerry Lee Lewis appeared on a cover of the Beatles’ “I Saw Her Standing There” for Lewis’s 2006 album, Last Man Standing. The same year, Penniman signed on as a guest judge for the TV series Celebrity Duets. In 2008, Penniman and Lewis performed alongside John Fogerty at the Grammy Awards of that year in a tribute to the two artists considered to be cornerstones of rock and roll by NARAS. That same year, Penniman appeared on radio host Don Imus‘ benefit album for sick children, The Imus Ranch Record.[106] In June 2010, Penniman recorded a gospel track for an upcoming tribute album to songwriting legend Dottie Rambo.

Towards the end of the first decade of the new millennium, Rolling Stone reported that Penniman remained “one of the most recognized and quotable celebrities in the world.” Throughout the decade, he kept up a stringent touring schedule, performing primarily in the States and Europe. However, sciatic nerve pain in his left leg and then replacement of the involved hip began affecting the frequency of his performances by 2010. Despite his health issues, Penniman continued to receive critical acclaim for his performances, with Rolling Stone reporting after a performance at the Howard Theater in Washington, D.C. in June 2012 that Penniman was “still full of fire, still a master showman, his voice still loaded with deep gospel and raunchy power.”[107] Following the D.C. concert, Penniman performed a full 90 minute show at the Pensacola Interstate Fair in Pensacola in October 2012 and headlined at the Orleans Hotel in Las Vegas during Viva Las Vegas Rockabilly Weekend in March 2013.[108][109]

In 2014, actor Brandon Mychal Smith won critical acclaim for his portrayal of Little Richard in the James Brown bio-pic “Get On Up.”[110][111][112] Mick Jagger co-produced the motion picture.[113][114]

Personal life

Relationships and family

In 1956, Penniman began a romantic relationship with Audrey Robinson, a 16-year-old college student, originally from Savannah, Georgia.[115][116] According to Penniman, he would invite other men to have sex with her in groups and once invited Buddy Holly to have sex with her; Robinson denied those claims.[115][117] The relationship ended after Penniman’s religious conversion in 1957. Robinson later became a stripper using the name Lee Angel. According to Robinson, Penniman wanted to continue to see her but she felt uncomfortable seeing a preacher as a stripper.[118] Described in GQ’s UK edition as a “lifelong soulmate”[which?], Robinson and Penniman are occasionally in each other’s company.[102]

Penniman met his only wife, Ernestine Campbell, at an evangelical rally in October 1957. They began dating that year and wed in July 1959. According to Campbell, she and Penniman initially enjoyed a happy marriage with “normal” sexual relations. Campbell claimed when the marriage ended in divorce in 1963, it was due to Penniman’s celebrity status, noting that it had made life difficult for her. Penniman claimed the marriage fell apart due to him being a neglectful husband.[119] While married, in 1962, Penniman adopted a one-year-old boy, Danny Jones, from a late church associate.[115] Penniman and his son remain close, with Jones often acting as one of his bodyguards.[120]

Sexual orientation

Penniman’s sexual orientation has long been a topic of debate. Penniman claimed that as a child he felt feminine and played with girls, which was the source of jokes at his expense.[121] Caught wearing his mother’s makeup and wardrobe at times, he was brutally punished by his father.[122] Penniman began having sexual encounters with both sexes by his early teens.[123] Allegedly due to his effeminate mannerisms, Penniman’s father kicked him out of their family home at 15.[2]Penniman first became involved in voyeurism in his early twenties, when a female friend of his would drive around and pick up men who would allow him to watch them have sex in the backseat of cars. Penniman was once arrested after a gas station attendant in Macon reported sexual activity in a car featuring Penniman and a couple. Cited on a lewd conduct charge, Penniman spent three days in jail and was temporarily banned from performing in Macon.[124]

During the early 1950s, Penniman had appeared as a drag performer in various vaudeville groups. By the time he entered the chitlin’ circuit, he began using makeup regularly, influenced by Billy Wright, who recommended him his brand of makeup, Pancake 31.[23] Later, as he began experiencing success in the mid-1950s, Penniman made members of his band use makeup as a means to gain entry into white clubs during performances. Penniman later told a columnist, “I wore the make-up so that white men wouldn’t think I was after the white girls. It made things easier for me, plus it was colorful too.”[125] Penniman received female attention during his mid-1950s heyday stating that female fans would give him naked photos of themselves and their phone numbers.[126][127] In 2000, Penniman stated: “I had girlfriends and a stack of women who followed me and traveled with me. I figure if being called a sissy would make me famous, let them say what they want to.”[128]

While attending Oakwood College, Penniman recalled a male student showed himself to him. After the incident was reported to the student’s father, Penniman withdrew from the college.[129] In 1962, Penniman was again arrested after he was caught spying on men urinating at a men’s bathroom at a Trailways bus station in Long Beach, California.[130] Penniman returned to participating in sexual orgies after his return to secular music in the 1960s. He differed in depictions of his sexuality. In 1984, while he noted that he felt homosexuality was “unnatural” and “contagious”, he would tell Charles White that he was “omnisexual” after he was asked about his sex life.[131] In 1995, Penniman told Penthouse that he always knew he was gay.[115] In 2007, Mojo magazine described Penniman as a “bisexualalien”.[132]

Drug and alcohol use

Penniman allegedly was a heavy drinker and cigarette smoker during the mid-1960s. By 1972, he was using cocaine, developing an addiction to the drug. He later lamented during that period, “they should have called me Little Cocaine, I was sniffing so much of that stuff!”[133] He got addicted to heroin and PCP around that same period. Of his drug experiences, he said “I lost my reasoning”.[134] He said of his cocaine addiction that he did whatever he could to use cocaine.[135]Penniman admitted that his addiction to cocaine and heroin was costing him as much as $1,000 a day.[136] In 1977, longtime friend Larry Williams once showed up with a gun and threatened to kill Penniman for failing to pay his drug debt. Penniman later mentioned that this was the most fearful moment of his life because Williams’s own drug addiction made him wildly unpredictable. Penniman did, however, also acknowledge that he and Williams were “very close friends” and when reminiscing of the drug-fueled clash, he recalled thinking “I knew he loved me – I hoped he did”.[137] Within that same year, Penniman had several devastating personal experiences, including his brother Tony’s death of a heart attack, the accidental shooting of his nephew that he loved like a son, and the murder of two close personal friends – one a valet at “the heroin man’s house.”[136] The combination of these experiences convinced Penniman to give up drugs and alcohol, along with rock and roll, and return to the ministry.[138]

Religion

Penniman’s family had deep evangelical (Baptist and AME) Christian roots, including two uncles and a grandfather who were preachers.[11] Penniman also took part in Macon’s Pentecostal churches, which were his favorites mainly due to their music, charismatic praise, dancing in the Holy Spirit and speaking in tongues.[8] At age 10, influenced by Pentecostalism, Penniman would go around saying he was a faith healer, singing gospel music to people who were feeling sick and touching them. He later recalled that they would often indicate that they felt better after he prayed for them and would sometimes give him money.[8] Penniman had aspirations of being a preacher due to the influence of singing evangelist Brother Joe May.[11]

After he was born again in 1957, Penniman enrolled at Oakwood College in Huntsville, Alabama, a mostly black Seventh-day Adventist college, to study theology. Penniman returned to secular music in the early 1960s.[139] He was eventually ordained a minister in 1970, and again resumed evangelical activities in 1977. Penniman represented Memorial Bibles International and sold their Black Heritage Bible, which highlighted the Book’s many black characters. As a preacher, Penniman evangelized in small churches and packed auditoriums of 20,000 or more. His preaching focused on uniting the races and bringing lost souls to repentance through God’s love.[140] In 1984, Penniman’s mother, Leva Mae, died following a period of illness. Only a few months prior to her death, Penniman promised her that he would remain a Christian.[99]

During the 1980s and 1990s, Penniman officiated at celebrity weddings. In 2006, Penniman wedded twenty couples who won a contest in one ceremony.[141] The musician used his experience and knowledge as a minister and elder statesman of rock and roll to preach at funerals of musical friends such as Wilson Pickett andIke Turner.[142] At a benefit concert in 2009 to raise funds to help rebuild children’s playgrounds destroyed by Hurricane Katrina, Penniman asked guest of honorFats Domino to pray with him and others. His assistants handed out inspirational booklets at the concert—a common practice at Penniman’s shows.[143] He somberly told a Howard Theatre, Washington, D.C. audience in June 2012, “I know this is not Church, but get close to the Lord. The world is getting close to the end. Get close to the Lord.”[107] In 2013, Penniman elaborated on his spiritual philosophies, stating “God talked to me the other night. He said He’s getting ready to come. The world’s getting ready to end and He’s coming, wrapped in flames of fire with a rainbow around his throne.” Rolling Stone reported his apocalyptic prophesies generated sniggers from some audience members as well as cheers of support. Penniman responded by stating: “When I talk to you about [Jesus], I’m not playing. I’m almost 81 years old. Without God, I wouldn’t be here.”[144]

Health problems

In October 1985, Penniman returned to the United States from England, where he had finished recording his album Lifetime Friend, to film a guest spot on the show, Miami Vice. Following the taping, he accidentally crashed his sports car into a telephone pole in West Hollywood, California. He suffered a broken right leg, broken ribs and head and facial injuries.[145] His recovery from the accident took several months.[145] His accident prevented him from being able to attend the inaugural Rock and Roll Hall of Fame ceremony in January 1986 where he was one of several inductees. He instead supplied a recorded message.[81]

In 2007, Penniman was having problems walking due to sciatica in his left leg, requiring him to use crutches.[146][147] In November 2009, he entered a hospital to have replacement surgery on his left hip. Despite returning to perform the following year, Penniman’s problems with his hip continued and he is nowadays helped onstage by a wheelchair. He has told fans that his surgery has his hip “breaking inside” and refuses to have further work on it. On September 30, 2013, he revealed to Cee Lo Green at a Recording Academy fundraiser that he had suffered a heart attack at his home the week prior and stated he used aspirin and had his son turn the air conditioner on, which his doctor confirmed had saved his life. Penniman stated, “Jesus had something for me. He brought me through.”[144]

Legacy

Music

“He claims to be ‘the architect of rock and roll’, and history would seem to bear out Little Richard’s boast. More than any other performer – save, perhaps, Elvis Presley, Little Richard blew the lid off the Fifties, laying the foundation for rock and roll with his explosive music and charismatic persona. On record, he made spine-tingling rock and roll. His frantically charged piano playing and raspy, shouted vocals on such classics as ‘Tutti Frutti‘, ‘Long Tall Sally‘ and ‘Good Golly, Miss Molly‘ defined the dynamic sound of rock and roll.”

—Rock and Roll Hall of Fame[81]

Penniman’s music and performance style had a pivotal impact on the shape of the sound and style of popular music genres of the 20th century.[22][40][148] As a rock and roll pioneer, Penniman embodied its spirit more flamboyantly than any other performer.[149] Penniman’s raspy shouting style gave the genre one of its most identifiable and influential vocal sounds and his fusion of boogie-woogie, New Orleans R&B and gospel music blazed its rhythmic trail.[149][150]

Penniman was blessed with a phenomenal voice able to generate croons, wails, and screams unprecedented in popular music.[22] He was cited by two of soul music’s pioneers, Otis Redding and Sam Cooke, as contributing to that genre’s early development. Redding stated that most of his music was patterned after Penniman’s and that he had “done a lot for [him] and [his] soul brothers in the music business.”[151] Cooke said in 1962 that Penniman had done “so much for our music”.[152] Cooke had a top 40 hit with his cover of “Send Me Some Loving” in 1963.

James Brown said that Penniman and the Upsetters, including drummer Charles “Chuck” Connor, were “the first to put the funk in rhythm”, with a biographer stating that their music “spark[ed] the musical transition from fifties rock and roll to sixties funk”.[81][153]

Penniman’s hits of the mid-1950s, such as “Tutti Frutti”, “Long Tall Sally”, “Keep A-Knockin'” and “Good Golly Miss Molly”, were generally characterized by playful lyrics with sexually suggestive connotations.[22] Allmusic writer Richie Unterberger stated that Penniman “merged the fire of gospel with New Orleans R&B, pounding the piano and wailing with gleeful abandon”, and that while “other R&B greats of the early ’50s had been moving in a similar direction, none of them matched the sheer electricity of Richard’s vocals. With his high speed deliveries, ecstatic trills, and the overjoyed force of personality in his singing, he was crucial in upping the voltage from high-powered R&B into the similar, yet different, guise of rock and roll.”[40] Due to his innovative music and style, he’s often widely acknowledged as the “architect of rock and roll”.[81]

Ray Charles introduced him at a concert in 1988 as “a man that started a kind of music that set the pace for a lot of what’s happening today.”[154] Rock and roll pioneer Bo Diddley called Penniman “one of a kind” and “a show business genius” that “influenced so many in the music business”.[152] Penniman’s contemporaries, including Elvis Presley, Bill Haley, Jerry Lee Lewis, The Everly Brothers, Gene Vincent and Eddie Cochran, all recorded covers of Penniman’s works.[155] Taken by Penniman’s music and style, and personally covering four of Penniman’s tunes on his own two breakthrough albums in 1956, Presley told Penniman in 1969 that his music was an inspiration to him and that he was “the greatest”.[156] Pat Boone noted in 1984, “no one person has been more imitated than Little Richard”.[157] As they wrote about Penniman for their Man of the Year – Legend category in 2010, GQ magazine stated that Penniman “is, without question, the boldest and most influential of the founding fathers of rock’n’roll”.[131] R&B pioneer Johnny Otis stated that “Little Richard is twice as valid artistically and important historically as Elvis Presley, the Beatles, and the Rolling Stones put together.”[152]

Society

In addition to his musical style, Penniman was cited as one of the first crossover black artists, reaching audiences of all races. His concerts broke the color line, drawing blacks and whites together despite attempts to sustain segregation. As H.B. Barnum explained in Quasar of Rock, Penniman “opened the door. He brought the races together.” [46] Barnum described Penniman’s music as not being “boy-meets-girl-girl-meets-boy things, they were fun records, all fun. And they had a lot to say sociologically in our country and the world.”[49] Barnum also stated that Penniman’s “charisma was a whole new thing to the music business”, explaining that “he would burst onto the stage from anywhere, and you wouldn’t be able to hear anything but the roar of the audience. He might come out and walk on the piano. He might go out into the audience.” Barnum also stated that Penniman was innovative in that he would wear colorful capes, blouse shirts, makeup and suits studded with multi-colored precious stones and sequins, and that he also brought flickering stage lighting from his show business experience into performance venues where rock and roll artists performed.[158]

Influence

Penniman influenced generations of performers across musical genres.[52] James Brown and Otis Redding both idolized Penniman.[157][159] Brown allegedly came up with the Famous Flames debut hit, “Please, Please, Please“, after Penniman had written the words on a napkin.[160][161] Redding started his professional career with Penniman’s band, The Upsetters.[162] He first entered a talent show performing Penniman’s “Heeby Jeebies”, winning for 15 consecutive weeks.[163] Ike Turnerclaimed most of Tina Turner‘s early vocal delivery was based on Penniman, something Penniman himself reiterated in the foreword of Turner’s biography, King of Rhythm.[164] Bob Dylan first performed covers of Penniman’s songs on piano in high school with his rock and roll group, the Golden Chords; in 1959 when leaving school, he wrote in his yearbook under “Ambition”: “to join Little Richard”.[165] Jimi Hendrix was influenced in appearance (clothing and hairstyle/mustache) and sound by Penniman. He was quoted in 1966 saying, “I want to do with my guitar what Little Richard does with his voice.”[166] Others influenced by Penniman early on in their lives included Bob Seger and John Fogerty.[167][168] Michael Jackson admitted that Penniman had been a huge influence on him prior to Off the Wall.[169]Rock critics noted similarities between Prince‘s androgynous look, music and vocal style to Penniman’s.[170][171] Upon hearing “Long Tall Sally”, John Lennoncommented that he was so impressed that he “couldn’t speak”.[172] Rolling Stones members Mick Jagger and Keith Richards were also profoundly influenced by Penniman, with Jagger citing him as his first induction to R&B music and referring to him as “the originator and my first idol”.[69] Upon hearing “Tutti Frutti”, Richards explained, “it was if, in a single instant, the world changed from monochrome to Technicolor“.[173] Penniman was an early vocal influence on Rod Stewart.[174] David Bowie called Penniman his “inspiration” stating upon listening to “Tutti Frutti” that he “heard God”.[175][176] After opening for him with his band Bluesology, pianistReginald Dwight was inspired to be a “rock and roll piano player”, later changing his name to Elton John.[177] Farookh Bulsara performed covers of Penniman’s songs as a teen, before finding fame as Freddie Mercury, frontman for Queen.[178] Penniman was referred to as Lou Reed‘s rock n roll hero, deriving inspiration from “the soulful, primal force” of the sound made by Penniman and his saxophonist on “Long Tall Sally.” Reed later stated, “I don’t know why and I don’t care, but I wanted to go to wherever that sound was and make a life.”[179] Patti Smith said, “To me, Little Richard was a person that was able to focus a certain physical, anarchistic, and spiritual energy into a form which we call rock ‘n’ roll … I understood it as something that had to do with my future. When I was a little girl, Santa Claus didn’t turn me on. Easter Bunny didn’t turn me on. God turned me on. Little Richard turned me on.”[180] The music of Deep Purple and Motörhead was also influenced by Penniman, as well as that of AC/DC.[181][182] The latter’s Bon Scott idolized Penniman and aspired to sing like him, and Angus Young was first inspired to play guitar after listening to Penniman’s music.[183][184][185][181][182] Later performers such as Mystikal, André “André 3000″ Benjamin of Outkast and Bruno Marswere cited by critics as having emulated Penniman’s style in their own works. Mystikal’s rap vocal delivery was compared to Penniman’s.[186] André 3000’s vocals in Outkast’s hit, “Hey Ya!“, were compared to an “indie rock Little Richard”.[187] Bruno Mars admitted Penniman influenced him. Mars’ song, “Runaway Baby” from his album, Doo-Wops & Hooligans was cited by the New York Times as “channeling Little Richard”.[188]

Awards and honors

Penniman received the Cashbox Triple Crown Award for “Long Tall Sally” in 1956.[189] In 1984, he was inducted into the Georgia Music Hall of Fame. He wasinducted to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1986.[81] Penniman’s influence on rock and roll was later recognized by the Rockabilly Hall of Fame.[190] In 1990, he received a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. He received the Lifetime Achievement Award from the Rhythm and Blues Foundation in 1994.[191] In 1993, he received the Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award.[192] In 1997, he was given the American Music Award of Merit.[193] In 2002, along with Chuck Berry and Bo Diddley, Penniman was honored as one of the first group of BMI icons at the 50th Annual BMI Pop Awards.[194] That same year, he was inducted into the NAACPImage Award Hall of Fame.[195] A year later, he was inducted into the Songwriters Hall of Fame.[89] In 2006, he was inducted into the Apollo Theater Hall of Fame.[196] Four years afterwards, he received a plaque on the theater’s Walk of Fame.[197] In 2008, he received a star at Nashville’s Music City Walk of Fame.[198]In 2009, he was inducted to the Louisiana Music Hall of Fame.[199] The UK issue of GQ named him its Man of the Year in its Legend category in 2010.[200]

Included in numerous Rolling Stone lists, Penniman’s Here’s Little Richard was ranked fifty on the magazine’s list of the 500 Greatest Albums of All Time.[201] He was ranked eighth on its list of the 100 Greatest Artists of All Time.[202] Rolling Stone listed three of Penniman’s recordings, “The Girl Can’t Help It”, “Long Tall Sally” and “Tutti Frutti”, on their 500 Greatest Songs of All Time.[203] Two of the latter songs and “Good Golly, Miss Molly” were listed on the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame’s500 Songs that Shaped Rock and Roll.[204] The Grammy Hall of Fame inducted several of Penniman’s recordings including “Tutti Frutti”, “Lucille”, “Long Tall Sally” and Here’s Little Richard.[205] “Tutti Frutti” topped music magazine Mojos list of “The 100 Records That Changed the World”.[206] The same recording was inducted to the Library of CongressNational Recording Registry with the library claiming the “unique vocalizing over the irresistible beat announced a new era in music”.[207]Penniman appeared in person to receive an honorary degree from his hometown’s Mercer University on May 11, 2013.[208] The day before the doctorate of humanities degree was to be bestowed upon him, the mayor of Macon announced that one of Penniman’s childhood homes, an historic site, will be moved to a rejuvenated section of that city’s Pleasant Hill district. It will be restored and named the Richard Penniman – Pleasant Hill Resource House, a meeting place where local history and artifacts will be displayed as provided by residents.[209][210][211]

Discography

Filmography

Notes

  1. Jump up^ Three other songs were recorded during the sessions, “Dance A Go Go” aka “Dancin’ All Around The World”, “You Better Stop”, and “Come See About Me” (possibly an instrumental), but Vee Jay did not release the latter two.[79]

Citations

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