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Archive for August 25th, 2010

BP Gulf Oil Disaster’s Walking Dead – Millions Have Been Poisoned

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August 25, 2010: Terrence Aym / – August 22, 2010

(CHICAGO) – A biochemical bomb went off in the Gulf of Mexico on April 20, 2010–as dangerous and destructive as a nuclear blast.

While an atom bomb’s destruction can be measured immediately after detonation, BP’s unintentional biochemical bomb is a slow-motion explosion that’s driving a continuing disaster. Unfortunately, lingering death occurs with both types of explosions.

Millions Exposed To Uncontrolled Hemorrhaging, Lesions, Cancers

Recently, frustrated scientists presented evidence that millions of Gulf area residents were poisoned by the BP Gulf disaster. Worse, they believe that millions more could be exposed to long term poisoning. Yet other than those worried scientists few seemed to care.

Now more frightening evidence has emerged: areas of the Gulf Coast may have been saturated with high levels of benzene, hydrogen sulfide and radioactive hydrocarbon effluents–three deadly substances that can cause disease and death years after the initial exposures. [Full report available here.]

The EPA And The Ongoing News Blackout

The curtain of silence that dropped just days after the Deepwater Horizon blowout has never been fully lifted. At the time, a no-man’s land was created prohibiting fishermen, reporters, news helicopters and civilian sea and air craft from approaching the immediate disaster zone. The US Coast Guard and BP conducted joint operations feverishly attempting to quell the spreading disaster. Reporters were threatened with arrest. News stories were yanked. Scientific reports buried. And data from the NOAA research vessel–initially sent to the region to take readings of the seafloor–was suppressed.

Yet some information leaked. Beyond the oil gushing into the Gulf at a rate never before seen, deadly methane gas flooded the region. The methane reached such high levels of density in the Gulf that brilliant scientists like Dr. John Kessler of Texas A&M recorded stunning readings of methane–amounts one million times higher than normal. His reports managed to reach the media. Although access to the forbidden zone has been restored, a partial news blackout remains in place blocking public access to the data that measured toxicity in the Gulf waters and Gulf states from April into August.

A Conveyor Belt Of Death: Deep Sea Oil Plume 22-Miles Long

Poisons flooded into the Gulf for three months. Unabated, these poisons have affected the ecology of the region. Now evidence is mounting that the delicate infrastructure of life inhabiting the Gulf continues to absorb much of the poison and is passing it on to unsuspecting humans. Reports that sea life in the Gulf have remained uncontaminated are being vigorously challenged.

And new reports are circulating the globe that the missing oil’s been found. A plume 22-miles long is suspended deep in the cold, dark waters of the Gulf. It’s not breaking up and it’s not being eaten by microbes. It is, however, acting as a conveyor belt of death.

Cocktail Of Poisons

Some environmental experts are calling what’s pouring into the land, sea and air from the seabed breach ‘a chemical cocktail of poisons.’ Areas of methane dead zones devoid of oxygen are continuing to drive species of fish into foreign waters, are killing plankton and other tiny sea life that are the foundation for the entire food chain, and are polluting the air with cancer-causing chemicals and poisonous rainfalls.

And before the news blackout fully descended, the EPA released data that benzene levels in New Orleans had rocketed to as high as 3,000 parts per billion (ppb). Benzene is extremely toxic, even short term exposure at low levels can cause agonizing illness and slow death from cancerous lesions and leukemia years later. But 3,000ppb is far from a low reading. Hydrogen sulfide was also detected by the EPA monitoring stations around the New Orleans area. The EPA reported hydrogen sulfide levels as high as 1200ppb. A normal, safe level falls between 5 to 10ppb.

Recently, Ron Kendall, an ecotoxicologist from Texas Tech University, was interviewed by National Geographic concerning the affect of the poisons released by the blown out well on bacteria and plankton in the Gulf. The results were not looking good. Indications of a major, ongoing poisoning occurring in the Gulf were widespread. “This is what we’ve been worried about, because this is the base of the food chain,” he told National Geographic. “Any effects on that level can work their way right on up.” Meaning right up the food chain to humans–many of whom have already been exposed to poisons from the air and water.

The Bio-Chemical Time Bomb

According to a report issued by Michael Harbart, Professor of internal medicine at Wayne State University and Kathleen Burns, Ph.D., Director of Sciencecorps, long-term exposure of the chemicals released by the ongoing BP Gulf disaster–at relatively low levels–should be avoided at all costs because “the potential for serious health damage is substantial. Chronic health effects are typically evaluated for specific crude oil components and vary from cancer to permanent neurological damage. They cover a range of diseases affecting all the organ systems…” [ “Gulf Oil Spill Health Hazards”]

Senior EPA Analyst Admits Millions Poisoned In Gulf

Recently–in an eye-opening interview with ‘Democracy Now!’–Hugh Kaufman, a senior policy analyst at the EPA’s Office of Solid Waste and Emergency Response, made this shocking admission: “And I think the media now has to follow the money, just as they did in Watergate, and tell the American people who’s getting money for poisoning the millions of people in the Gulf.”

As Alexander Higgins at ‘Democracy Now!’ points out: “Hugh Kaufman has been at the EPA since the Agency was created in the early 1970s, as an engineer, investigator and policy analyst. Prior to joining the EPA in the beginning of 1971, he was a captain in the US Air Force. He helped write all the Federal laws regulating the treatment, storage, disposal, and remediation of solid and hazardous waste. He has been the Chief Investigator on numerous contamination cases, including Love Canal and Times Beach.” [For links to the transcript of interview and the EPA analyst’s video testimony, go here.]

The Walking Dead

Like those exposed to the Russian Chernobyl disaster, or the many thousands now sick and dying after exposure to the 9-11 Twin Towers toxic cloud, the people of the Gulf coast may have joined the ranks of the walking dead. Experts cannot predict with any certainty that the poisons will be contained exclusively to the Gulf states. Weather patterns and the variable density of the substances could conceivably expand the Death Zone into parts of the Midwest and East coast of the United States.

Download the PDFs and study the scientific papers here. Review the 26 source links here. Access the video interview of EPA whistle blower Hugh Kaufman here.

BP Death Clouds Already Onshore

The Tonka Report Editor’s  Note: The average age when nearly everyone who was involved in the Exxon Valdez disaster in Alaska in 1989 died… was 51. – SJH

Link to original article below…

The Government’s New “Right” To Track Your Every Move With GPS

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August 25, 2010: Adam Cohen / Time – August 25, 2010

Government agents can sneak onto your property in the middle of the night, put a GPS device on the bottom of your car and keep track of everywhere you go. This doesn’t violate your Fourth Amendment rights, because you do not have any reasonable expectation of privacy in your own driveway – and no reasonable expectation that the government isn’t tracking your movements.

That is the bizarre – and scary – rule that now applies in California and eight other Western states. The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit, which covers this vast jurisdiction, recently decided the government can monitor you in this way virtually anytime it wants – with no need for a search warrant. (See a TIME photoessay on Cannabis Culture.)

It is a dangerous decision – one that, as the dissenting judges warned, could turn America into the sort of totalitarian state imagined by George Orwell. It is particularly offensive because the judges added insult to injury with some shocking class bias: the little personal privacy that still exists, the court suggested, should belong mainly to the rich.

This case began in 2007, when Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) agents decided to monitor Juan Pineda-Moreno, an Oregon resident who they suspected was growing marijuana. They snuck onto his property in the middle of the night and found his Jeep in his driveway, a few feet from his trailer home. Then they attached a GPS tracking device to the vehicle’s underside.

After Pineda-Moreno challenged the DEA’s actions, a three-judge panel of the Ninth Circuit ruled in January that it was all perfectly legal. More disturbingly, a larger group of judges on the circuit, who were subsequently asked to reconsider the ruling, decided this month to let it stand. (Pineda-Moreno has pleaded guilty conditionally to conspiracy to manufacture marijuana and manufacturing marijuana while appealing the denial of his motion to suppress evidence obtained with the help of GPS.)

In fact, the government violated Pineda-Moreno’s privacy rights in two different ways. For starters, the invasion of his driveway was wrong. The courts have long held that people have a reasonable expectation of privacy in their homes and in the “curtilage,” a fancy legal term for the area around the home. The government’s intrusion on property just a few feet away was clearly in this zone of privacy.

The judges veered into offensiveness when they explained why Pineda-Moreno’s driveway was not private. It was open to strangers, they said, such as delivery people and neighborhood children, who could wander across it uninvited. (See the misadventures of the CIA.)

Chief Judge Alex Kozinski, who dissented from this month’s decision refusing to reconsider the case, pointed out whose homes are not open to strangers: rich people’s. The court’s ruling, he said, means that people who protect their homes with electric gates, fences and security booths have a large protected zone of privacy around their homes. People who cannot afford such barriers have to put up with the government sneaking around at night.

Judge Kozinski is a leading conservative, appointed by President Ronald Reagan, but in his dissent he came across as a raging liberal. “There’s been much talk about diversity on the bench, but there’s one kind of diversity that doesn’t exist,” he wrote. “No truly poor people are appointed as federal judges, or as state judges for that matter.” The judges in the majority, he charged, were guilty of “cultural elitism.” (Read about one man’s efforts to escape the surveillance state.)

The court went on to make a second terrible decision about privacy: that once a GPS device has been planted, the government is free to use it to track people without getting a warrant. There is a major battle under way in the federal and state courts over this issue, and the stakes are high. After all, if government agents can track people with secretly planted GPS devices virtually anytime they want, without having to go to a court for a warrant, we are one step closer to a classic police state – with technology taking on the role of the KGB or the East German Stasi.

Fortunately, other courts are coming to a different conclusion from the Ninth Circuit’s – including the influential U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit. That court ruled, also this month, that tracking for an extended period of time with GPS is an invasion of privacy that requires a warrant. The issue is likely to end up in the Supreme Court.

In these highly partisan times, GPS monitoring is a subject that has both conservatives and liberals worried. The U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit’s pro-privacy ruling was unanimous – decided by judges appointed by Presidents Ronald Reagan, George W. Bush and Bill Clinton. (Comment on this story.)

Plenty of liberals have objected to this kind of spying, but it is the conservative Chief Judge Kozinski who has done so most passionately. “1984 may have come a bit later than predicted, but it’s here at last,” he lamented in his dissent. And invoking Orwell’s totalitarian dystopia where privacy is essentially nonexistent, he warned: “Some day, soon, we may wake up and find we’re living in Oceania.”

The Tonka Report Editor’s Note: Well then, I guess we fight fire with fire. Check out these articles– SJH

GPS Jamming

Homemade GPS Jammer

Link to original article below…,8599,2013150,00.html

US Government Says Gulf Seafood Safe As Consumers Must Decide

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August 25, 2010: Michelle Locke / Associated Press (AP) via Yahoo News – August 24, 2010

OAKLAND, Calif. – Shawn Mattiuz, manager of the Hapuku Fish Shop in Market Hall, a collection of upscale food purveyors in Oakland’s bustling Rockridge district, has been watching the Gulf seafood saga play out in the ice-cooled trays of his display cases.

For a few days after the oil spill turned into a crisis this spring, demand stalled as “everybody freaked out,” he said. Since then, he says concern has died down and he’s selling about the same amount of Gulf shrimp as he did pre-spill. “I get a lot of questions about it, definitely. They want to know if it’s regulated,” says Mattiuz. “The truth of the matter is from everything that I’ve read, it’s more highly regulated now than it ever has been.”

More Gulf waters are reopening to fishermen, and government officials say seafood cleared for sale has been thoroughly vetted. Whether consumers are buying those assurances — and the fish — remains to be seen. Nationally, an Associated Press-GfK poll that surveyed 1,007 adults nationwide between Aug. 11-16 found that 54 percent did not trust the seafood.

But Jimmy Galle, founder of Sausalito-based Gulfish LP and supplier to Hapuku and a number of upscale restaurants in the San Francisco Bay area and elsewhere, says his business has begun to grow again after a few lean months. “And the shrimp has been nothing less than spectacular lately,” he said.

Ann Cashion, co-owner of Johnny’s Halfshell in Washington, D.C., one of Galle’s clients, sees concerns about Gulf seafood safety fading. “I find that people aren’t even asking right now. It was more on top of people’s brains when the oil was still flowing,” she said. Cashion believes the testing is thorough, particularly because state officials are involved. “The state of Louisiana and the Gulf Coast in general has so much to lose if there is any kind of problem with any seafood that gets through inspection, so I know the inspection is going to be thorough and is going to err on the side of ‘Let’s don’t take any chances,'” she said. Not everyone shares that confidence in Gulf seafood, which accounts for about 2 percent of overall U.S. seafood consumed.

“I would say that I always have a skeptical eye toward government regulation and government certification of things,” said Genie Gratto, an Oakland food blogger. “It’s been proven time and time again that, first of all government certification of food is such a massive job — the USDA and the FDA tend to be pretty understaffed in those kind of inspection areas — there’s no way they can get everything.” On the other hand, she does have confidence in buying from trusted suppliers, like the small meat and fish market she shops at. She also tries to buy local, which doesn’t include Gulf seafood.

The Natural Resources Defense Council and other groups recently asked the Food and Drug Administration and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration to strengthen procedures for determining whether seafood is safe and whether fishing areas should be reopened. They also want sampling protocols and data published online.

“We’re not saying that the seafood is not safe,” said Gina Solomon, a senior scientist with NRDC. “We’re basically raising questions about the government’s procedures, their scientific procedures and their transparency.” One issue is whether government standards are strict enough to protect vulnerable populations, she said. “We want to make sure that the government is setting up a robust seafood safety testing program that will be able to protect the public for years to come, because that’s how long this problem is likely to last.”

The FDA is reviewing the NRDC letter, but officials are confident in the protocols, said agency spokeswoman Meghan Scott. The main issue with oil contamination is potential cancer-causing substances called polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons, or PAHs. These are pollutants that show up in other foods as well, such as grilled meat. If there is contamination, fish metabolize it fastest, oysters and crabs slowest and shrimp are somewhere between. Testing includes “sniffers,” who check for traces of oil and lab tests on ground up seafood to check for signs of contaminants.

Because of strict adherence to procedures, the FDA “feels confident in the safety of seafood coming from these waters,” Scott said in an e-mail. “We also understand that we must remain vigilant to ensure the safety of seafood coming from the Gulf. As such, FDA and NOAA will continue to monitor both water and seafood to ensure that tainted fish is not allowed into the marketplace.”

Like Mattiuz, John Currence, chef/owner of the City Grocery Restaurant Group in Oxford, Miss., has been getting a lot of questions about Gulf seafood — but not because customers are nervous. “People have, through the entirety of this crisis, actually questioned us about our seafood because they wanted to support the Gulf fisheries and the Gulf fishermen, not because they were afraid of the quality of what was available out there,” he said.

Like others, he’s concerned about the long-term effects of the spill, “but nobody has any idea of what the actual answer to that is. So the question is, are we going to sit here and wring our hands in fear for what the future may bring? Or are we going to do our best to make the Gulf heal and be glad for what’s coming through our doors every day that is entirely on par with what we were getting April 19 (before the spill began.)

In Oakland, about half a dozen customers stopping by Hapuku Fish during a recent lunch-hour seemed unfazed at the idea of buying Gulf seafood. One exception was Louise Booth, a homemaker in the east San Francisco Bay. She wasn’t ready to buy Gulf seafood “for a while. I know it’s been authorized, but ….” she said, shrugging her shoulders. But regular customer Sharon Francis of Oakland happily selected some fresh Gulf shrimp to go with a paella. “I just trust my fishmonger,” she said. “I know these guys carry the best.”

The Tonka Report Editor’s Note: Above you have just read the US government and MSM propaganda spin concerning the safety of Gulf seafood. Now, I strongly urge that all of you read the following two outstanding articles, complete with heart-wrenching pictures of the damage and utterly damning videos and interviews of government officials, scientists, and actual Gulf fishermen that unequivocally prove without question that the US government, the media, and BP are flat out lying to the people of this country

Environmental Disaster In The Gulf. How Has It Come To This?

Oil Spill Aftermath: It’s Only The Beginning!  

Meanwhile, the journal Science is now claiming that a new, never before discovered oil-eating microbe has devoured the massive oil plume as well as all the other oil in the Gulf of Mexico. How convenient. Time will tell how long it takes before this too is proven to be yet another lie in a long line of deceptions thus far– SJH

Study: Oil-Eating Microbes Plentiful In Gulf Oil Spill     

Link to original article below…