Libya, War, and the Individual World Order– a call for Noncompliance

August 30, 2011 by  
Filed under Commentary


America 20xy


By Andrew Steele

Much of the American and European media has chosen to downplay the genocide of black Africans in Libya during the Western intelligence staged uprising there, focusing on it now only because Gaddafi is in hiding, because we’re told that the TNC is in control of Libya, (though fighting continues),and because  the African Union has refused to recognize the new puppet government as a result.  The genocide taking place in Libya at the hands of the Western intelligence backed rebels is not a new revelation.  Some newspapers mentioned it before the rebels claimed victory.    The notion that the people our tax dollars are supporting are some kind of quaint, democracy loving group of freedom fighters is a myth perpetuated by a corporate media that has mostly proven itself to be nothing but a unified mouthpiece for the string-tugging authors of  our government’s continuing grab for global empire.

“Why Is Much of Africa Giving Libya’s Rebels the Cold Shoulder?” whines TIME Magazine this week in an attempt to dilute any legitimate grievances that A.U. member nations have regarding the treatment of black immigrants in Libya, as well as the reality of a new civil war there, and the threat of future destabilization efforts in their own countries.  The article, which subtly tries to reassure the people of the United States that their government did the right thing in their name by rambling about Gaddafi and pretending that he’s any different than the dictators we support, does little but reaffirm the fact that the Western press is engaged in full information warfare against its own people, and the people of Africa.  With President Obama unable to perform his appointed duties of convincing the American public that the war in Libya is legal (his argument easily debunked by the U.N.’s own charter) the pundits and newspaper hacks are forced to work extra hard to play upon the emotions of the public– much like they did during the run up, execution, and immediate aftermath of the Iraq War– by presenting the story as one of an evil dictator ousted by a good guy global police force instead of takeover of one mafia’s territory by a larger mafia, using our money to fund their operations.

“I use emotion for the many and reserve reason for the few” — Adolf Hitler

While the media has used the slur of racistto attack anyone who criticizes Obama’s deplorable policies and thus marginalize his opposition, by supporting the Libyan rebels it has enabled mass murder in Africa and further tarnished the history of the United States with more atrocities against black people.  Peer pressure will succeed in shutting Americans up on this subject (and other important subjects) only until Americans who see through the lies stop looking at the globalist cheerleading minority as their peers and recognize them for what they are– a gaggle of opportunistic, sadistic and/or depressed criminals and criminal defenders, callously destroying lives like giggling children burning ants with magnifying glasses.  The hateful slurs of politicians, Fox News, CNN, and MSNBC hosts, as well as newspaper editorial writers, are about as relevant in this decade of the 21st Century as the nasty screams of a schizophrenic bum angry over the fact that you didn’t give him the five dollars he aggressively demanded from you for as you walked past.   Despite the artificial lines with which society’s controllers attempt to divide us, those who “see” see only spirit– a simple and clearly defined realm of right and wrong…common sense vs. obvious manipulation.  The advent of new communication technologies along with the establishment’s own megalomaniac overreach has spawned an inevitable resistance, uniting freedom-minded people not under the desired control of our self-appointed masters, but under the banner of morality, with a shared, self-preserving urge to protect the liberties of all men and women as the basis for something larger.

And what is that?

It is a big idea– an Individual World Order, where the globalists fail in their attempt to create a world tyranny, liberty is preserved, and every man and woman is truly his or her own master.

We can achieve it, but what it requires first is a revolutionary change in public thinking, and open recognition that the people who claim to be our political and media leaders lead us only as occupiers, not as legitimate representatives of the people.  Any claim to the contrary has been nullified by their open disregard for the rule of law in executing the war in Libya, (as well as previous lies and constitutional violations).

The true executive, legislative, and judicial leaders are the individuals who run matters of law and foreign relations through the filters of the Golden Rule and the U.S. Constitution before forcing their whims upon the rest of mankind.  Under the protective cover of the Bill of Rights each person who reads these words is a president, a supreme military commander, and a central banker, not just in America but in every nation, because our rights are ours from birth, given to us by whatever force, be it nature or God, that creates us.

There is nothing liberating in creating chaos and destroying lives, such as what has been done most recently in Libya, and may well be done in other countries to follow.  The hired muscle that rules Libya now is the same muscle that fought against our own soldiers in Iraq and Afghanistan.  For no other reason than sheer greed supported by a philosophy of malice and depravity we are all being acclimated into accepting constant warfare and social upheaval, with the free people of the world shackled together, tiredly laying the bricks of the New World Order for pharaohs who watch us from a distance, fearing the day that their slaves realize the bricks they carry can also be used to break chains.

That day needs to come now.

This is not a call for violence, but rather a call for noncompliance, especially to those given pieces of the power being used to enslave us.  Members of the military, law enforcement, weapons makers, media propagandists, and those holding political office (just to name a few)…this is the time to realize that the New World Order you’re helping to build ultimately won’t have a place for you or your children in it, and that the spiritual rewards of saving mankind will trump the fork-tongued praises of your worldly imprisoned superiors, many turning the gears of this destructive machine because they know not what they do, only that they’re following orders.

Rebellion need not always come in the form of mutiny but in quiet resolve.  A decision to not follow illegal orders, whether openly stated or secretly practiced, is more powerful than a bullet penetrating flesh.  The evil ambitions of warlords don’t deserve the 110 percent effort that they demand of their captive minions, but rather the bare minimum required to keep those trapped in the loosened chains of limited power below from being punished…and even less if true patriots can manage it.  To call for sabotage would be illegal (I think), but to call for indulging one’s laziness while under the cloak of doom and freeing one’s spirit from the traps of money, prestige, and promised power in the pursuit of satisfying nobody but oneself (slowing down the war machine in the process) is simply a call for freedom in what we’re told is a free country…

…a country of good people whose only responsibilities are to themselves and their families, and not to the empire that their car magnet flags, their music, their movies, and their video games are selling them.

Indeed, good peoples’ needs are not served by invading countries or subverting them based on lies.

Good peoples’ needs are not served by expertly making the tools that bring death to innocent human beings.

Good peoples’ needs are not served by acting as the spinners of lies and manipulation for their lost brothers and sisters.

Good peoples’ needs are not served by using their uniforms to jail those exercing their own freedoms.

Realizing this, how can we choose anything other than freedom for ourselves from this cancerous empire that we’re ordered to feed?  How can we pursue the worthless toy prizes that our nervous overlords dangle in front of us to lead us away from the treasures we already own in the form of our natural liberties and our cherished loved ones?

Noncompliance begins in the brain and works down through the fingers.  Eventually it materializes as words, and then actions.  Despite the smoke and mirrors power of humanity’s enemies, the problems of today are not insurmountable, and certainly can’t break the will of free people who have decided that they’ve had enough.  Real battles do not take place in far away lands but rather in the minds of those who fight them.  Once the controllers lose the their grip on the minds of the men and women standing in front of them, they have no choice left but to surrender…and eventually fade.

Noncompliance is the first step to saving lives.

As Americans we can practice it, not because we’re angry, not because we’re special, but simply because like all human beings we are free…and deep down we know it.

Tom Woods Heads off Neo Cons at the Pass – Defends Paul after nasty (1st tier) Attack

August 29, 2011 by  
Filed under Commentary

Tom Woods dismantles Jeffrey Lord’s August 23, 2011 American Spectator article “Ron Paul and the Neoliberal Reeducation Campaign.”

First Circuit Affirms Right to Record the Police

August 29, 2011 by  
Filed under Americas

Posted by David Rittgers


Right to Record, a website devoted to the legal aspects of recording police officers, has the scoop. A panel of the First Circuit Court of Appeals affirmed the right of citizens to openly record police officers.

Gathering information about government officials in a form that can readily be disseminated to others serves a cardinal First Amendment interest in protecting and promoting “the free discussion of governmental affairs.” Moreover, as the Court has noted, “[f]reedom of expression has particular significance with respect to government because ‘[i]t is here that the state has a special incentive to repress opposition and often wields a more effective power of suppression.’” This is particularly true of law enforcement officials, who are granted substantial discretion that may be misused to deprive individuals of their liberties. Ensuring the public’s right to gather information about their officials not only aids in the uncovering of abuses, but also may have a salutary effect on the functioning of government more generally.

Read the whole thing. It provides a great discussion of the developing legal landscape, as well as some juicy details — like the fact that the attorney defending the statute for Massachusetts wrote her student note about how the Massachusetts wiretapping law is unconstitutional.

This decision is a big deal. The case comes from Massachusetts, one of two states (the other being Illinois) that continues to criminalize recording audio in public. It’s the latest in a string of victories against the Massachusetts wiretapping law that has become a useful tool for police who want to shield their actions from public scrutiny. A Massachusetts District Attorney recently refused to proceed with charges against a woman who recorded a vicious police beating, the D.A. declaring that police officers have no reasonable expectation of privacy while on duty and in public. Cop Block founders Pete Eyre and Adam Mueller were just acquitted on felony wiretapping charges for openly recording their encounter with police officers Massachusetts.

Moving on to the other holdout, Illinois, a woman who surreptitiously recorded Chicago Police Internal Affairs officers trying to persuade her not to file a sexual harassment complaint against police officers was acquitted of felony wiretapping charges. All of this sets the stage for the ACLU v. Alvarez, a lawsuit seeking to prevent future wiretapping charges against citizens who record on-duty police in public.

For more Cato work on the right to record police, take a look at this video and this post on Anthony Graber’s victory over abuse of the Maryland wiretapping statute. Speaking of which, Right to Record provides a page on the Maryland wiretapping statute, supplying the decision in Graber’s case for anyone who faces similar charges in the future.


Nevada DA charges TSA Agent with lewdness (Molestation) against a Child

August 29, 2011 by  
Filed under Americas

Would you let this man put his hands on your child?

SPRING CREEK — A city officer arrested a Spring Creek man Wednesday morning at the Elko Area Regional Airport, where he works for the Transportation Security Administration, on a warrant charging six counts of lewdness with a child.

The Elko County Sheriff’s Office was notified in July of possible sexual contact between David Ralph Anderson, 61, and a girl younger than 14.

According to Elko Justice Court records, the victim told investigators that on seven to 10 occasions between 2010 and this year, Anderson allegedly taught the victim about various sexual acts and had sexual contact in the form of touching each other’s genitals.

Investigators reported Anderson also told the girl to sleep in his bed and taught her to say various vulgar words associated with body parts and sexual activities.

In addition, the girl stated he would rub lotion all over her body, placed his hand up her shirt to touch her breasts, had her watch pornographic films with him, encouraged her to consume alcohol and would French kiss her.

Deputy District Attorney Tyler Ingram submitted a warrant request to Elko Justice of the Peace Al Kacin on Aug. 23, which was granted along with an objection to any reduction of bail.

Anderson, who is a TSA employee according to Elko County Jail records, is being held on $250,000 bail.

Read more:

CIA demands cuts to critical 9/11 memoir

August 29, 2011 by  
Filed under Music/Book/Film/Art

They cannot silence us all!



The Central Intelligence Agency has demanded a publisher make extensive cuts to a book critical of its performance before and after the September 11 attacks, officials said Friday.

“The Black Banners: The Inside Story of 9/11 and the War Against Al-Qaeda,” a memoir by former FBI agent Ali Soufan due out next month, recounts his experiences at the heart of high-profile terror investigations.

Soufan has accused the CIA of insisting on scores of redactions he says are not justified on security grounds but are aimed at undermining an account that reflects badly on the agency, the New York Times reported.

A spokesman for the CIA rejected the accusation and said the changes were meant to safeguard national security.

“The suggestion that the Central Intelligence Agency has requested redactions on this publication because it doesn?t like the content is ridiculous,” CIA spokesman Preston Golson said in an email.

“The CIA?s pre-publication review process looks solely at the issue of whether information is classified,” he said.

In his book, Soufan reportedly argues that the CIA botched an opportunity to prevent the 2001 terror plot by failing to divulge information to the FBI about two future 9/11 hijackers based in San Diego.

He is also critical of the harsh interrogation techniques used on terror suspects — including Abu Zubaydah, the first important captive taken after the 9/11 attacks — saying such methods are counterproductive.

The dispute over the book comes as the country prepares to mark the 10th anniversary of the September 11 attacks on New York and Washington and amid a continuing debate about the treatment of terror suspects.

In a 78-page letter, the CIA requested a range of cuts to the manuscript, including of information already made public or discussed at congressional hearings, according to WW Norton and Company, the book’s publisher.

With the memoir due to go on sale in less than a month, the company said it plans to publish the book with the edits demanded by the CIA.

“Norton will publish the book with redactions,” Louise Brockett, a Norton spokeswoman, told AFP.

The author, quoted in the New York Times, criticized the CIA for its approach and said the government needed to face honestly “where we made mistakes and let the American people down.”

“It saddens me that some are refusing to address past mistakes.”

Golson countered that “just because something is in the public domain doesn?t mean it?s been officially released or declassified by the US government.”

A US official argued that Soufan was not being silenced in any way and has often spoken out publicly.

“No one?s stopped Ali Soufan from expressing his opinions about the interrogation of terrorists. He?s done it repeatedly, in several media outlets,” said the official, who spoke on condition of anonymity.

The changes demanded by the CIA include wording used by Soufan in 2009 testimony at a Senate hearing and references to the agency’s “stations,” the widely used, traditional word for CIA offices abroad.

Soufan is not the first author to face tough restrictions by the CIA, according to Steven Aftergood, who leads the Project on Government Secrecy for the Federation of American Scientists.

The “CIA has often been very heavy-handed in its pre-publication review process, sometimes including restrictions on information that is already in the public domain,” he said.

“The CIA thinks the national security of the United States is so fragile that it can be damaged by repeating the wrong words. But others believe that free expression and robust debate are exactly what make the nation strong.”

Shocking Evidence: “Balanced Budget Amendment” Is a Ruse‏

August 29, 2011 by  
Filed under Commentary


D o w n s i z e r - D i s p a t c h
Quote of the Day: "My concern is that (the Balanced Budget Amendment)
might limit our ability to rely on the plain text of the 1787
Constitution as presently amended." -- Howard Phillips, former
Constitution Party nominee for President
The Balanced Budget Amendment being floated by Republicans is an awful
idea. I wrote a letter to my Representative and Senators using's "Cap the Debt" campaign to explain why. The hardwired
letter begins <>
"Do NOT raise the debt ceiling ever again."
Feel free to use what I went on to write... 
Several leading Republicans would have us believe that a Balanced
Budget Amendment is a good idea because 49 states have such a
As Dr. Phil might say, "How's that working out?"
Unsurprisingly, many state governments have figured out how to game
the system. 
Coincidentally, Congress is great at playing con games. 
Here's the ruse. See if it sounds familiar... 
State officials claim balanced budgets. However, they leave employee
pensions and healthcare obligations off their books. 
Truth in Accounting reports that the worst offenders of off-the-books
accounting are Connecticut, New Jersey, Illinois, Hawaii, and
Kentucky. Only four states are running a surplus.
Sheila Weinberg of Truth in Accounting compares it to thinking, "your
$5,000 Visa bill is not your debt, because your current required
payment is only $37."
Could we expect similar shenanigans once the Balanced Budget Amendment
becomes part of the U.S. Constitution?
This brings up two issues... 
1) How soon before Congress "rescues" these states? How many more
budget-busting, irresponsibility-rewarding bailouts are we going to
2) If so many states are lying in their accounting, how can we have
any confidence that the hard task of ratifying a Constitutional
amendment is going to result in enforced, fiscal sanity? Under the
Balanced Budget Amendment, what things will Congress and the President
pretend are off the books? 
The truth is that the current GOP Balanced Budget Amendment proposal
will SWELL the Federal State to new levels of bloat. 
* It ignores the clear limitations already imposed by the Constitution
* It substitutes those limitations for the permanent enshrinement of a
government sized at a whopping 18% of GDP 
* It says nothing about how GDP is to be calculated
* It says nothing about what is to be counted in the official budget
There’s a much better tool for enforcing budgetary sanity: The debt
ceiling. It must never be raised again. That means... 
You must MAKE CUTS NOW -- lots of them. 
Ms. Weinberg also suggests that the various states need "Full Accrual
Calculations and Techniques," or simply, FACT-based budgeting. I would
suggest the federal government needs such a thing every bit as much --
and far more than it needs a silly Balanced Budget Amendment. 
The fight for a Balanced Budget Amendment is political Onanism. Do
Republicans want those of us who are fiscally conscious to waste our
energy, while they continue to borrow and spend, albeit at a lower
level than their Democrat counterparts? 
I want you to stop with the stalling tactics and ear-tickling games.
I've already told you Tax Increases won't work. Well, the Balanced
Budget Amendment won't work either. Instead, cut actual spending to
2004 levels, and do so immediately.
Do this so that you'll never need to raise the debt ceiling, ever
How many of your friends, family, and colleagues know that, despite
having a Balanced Budget Amendment in 49 states, only four have
balanced budgets? Share this message with them, and encourage them to
join you in sending a message to Congress. 
And remember to click "Like" on the Facebook page, "Cap
the Debt:"
Jim Babka
President, Inc.

Ron Paul Tears into FEMA

August 29, 2011 by  
Filed under Media

*While FEMA Central Planning has yet to clean up from Katrina, Ron Paul’s district immediately recovered from Rita, and is even extra prepared for the next big Hurricane!


Also Good:

Rush Limbaugh producer tells fill in host to bash Ron Paul.. Is that honest? Nope.

Neil Cavuto To Ron Paul “You’re a Genius” Calls Paul A “Rock Star” !

Minister Farrakhan on Ron Paul & Exposing the Federal Reserve and International Bankers

EXCELLENT ARTICLE ON WHY NEO CONS HATE RON PAUL, AND HOW CLOSE WE HAVE COME TO THE NEO CON HOLOCAUST. Yes it is true, Obama IS continuing the empirical and tyrannical reign of his cousin Bush and Bush.

Read it here:

The Return of the Smear Brigade

Neocon takes aim at Ron Paul – and misses
by Justin Raimondo, August 29, 2011 (

Financial Terrorism? Market crash ‘could hit within weeks’, warn bankers

August 29, 2011 by  
Filed under Economy

A more severe crash than the one triggered by the collapse of Lehman Brothers could be on the way, according to alarm signals in the credit markets.

The cost of insuring RBS bonds is now higher than before the taxpayer was forced to step in and rescue the bank in October 2008 Photo: Alamy


London Telegraph

Insurance on the debt of several major European banks has now hit historic levels, higher even than those recorded during financial crisis caused by the US financial group’s implosion nearly three years ago.

Credit default swaps on the bonds of Royal Bank of Scotland, BNP Paribas, Deutsche Bank and Intesa Sanpaolo, among others, flashed warning signals on Wednesday. Credit default swaps (CDS) on RBS were trading at 343.54 basis points, meaning the annual cost to insure £10m of the state-backed lender’s bonds against default is now £343,540.

The cost of insuring RBS bonds is now higher than before the taxpayer was forced to step in and rescue the bank in October 2008, and shows the recent dramatic downturn in sentiment among credit investors towards banks.

“The problem is a shortage of liquidity – that is what is causing the problems with the banks. It feels exactly as it felt in 2008,” said one senior London-based bank executive.

“I think we are heading for a market shock in September or October that will match anything we have ever seen before,” said a senior credit banker at a major European bank.

Despite this, bank shares rebounded on Wednesday, showing the growing disconnect between equity and credit investors. RBS closed up 9pc at 21.87p, while Barclays put on 3pc to 149.6p despite credit default swaps on the bank hitting a 12-month high. This mirrored the US trend, with Bank of America shares up 10pc in late Wall Street trade after a hitting a 12-month low on Tuesday over fears that it might have to raise as much as $200bn (£121bn). As with the European banks, the rebound in the share price was not reflected in the credit markets, where its CDS reached a 12-month high of 384.42 basis points.

European stock markets joined in the rally. The FTSE closed up 1.5pc at 5,206 on hopes the chance of a global recession had diminished. European shares hit a one-week high, with Germany’s DAX closing up 2.7pc and France’s CAC 1.8pc higher. The Dow Jones index edged higher on strong durable goods orders data as markets began to accept that the US Federal Reserve is unlikely to signal fresh stimulus at Jackson Hole this Friday.

Even Moody’s decision to downgrade Japan’s sovereign credit rating by one notch to Aa3 did little to damage global sentiment, although Tokyo’s Nikkei closed down just over 1pc.

As stock market nerves settled, gold – which has recorded steady gains recently as investors seek a safe haven – fell 5.3pc to $1,777 in London.

U.N. agency warns of possible “bird flu” resurgence

August 29, 2011 by  
Filed under World

ED: This news Item appeared on a “news” page promoting Vaccines… Normally we write stuff like this off, But with the Rockefeller Inst. warning us last year that 2012 WILL be the real thing (Geese Flu)… We think its best you take this seriously by (at a minimum) building your immune system.

Could this be the NWO End Game?

ROME (Reuters) – The United Nations warned of a possible major resurgence of bird flu and said a mutant strain of the H5N1 virus was spreading in Asia and elsewhere.

The UN’s Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) on Monday urged increased surveillance and preparation for a potential outbreak of the virus, which it says has infected 565 people since it first appeared in 2003, killing 331 of them.

The virus was eliminated from most of the 63 countries infected at its peak in 2006 after mass poultry culling, but since 2008 it has been expanding geographically in both poultry and wild birds, partly due to migration patterns, the FAO said.

“The general departure from the progressive decline observed in 2004-2008 could mean that there will be a flare-up of H5N1 this fall and winter,” the FAO’s chief veterinary officer, Juan Lubroth, said in a statement.

He said the appearance of a variant strain of the virus in China and Vietnam was a concern, because it appeared to be able to sidestep the defenses of existing vaccines.

The circulation of the virus in Vietnam also poses a direct threat to Cambodia, Thailand and Malaysia as well as endangering the Korean peninsula and Japan, FAO said.

The latest human death occurred earlier this month in Cambodia, which has registered eight cases of human infection this year, all of them fatal, the agency added.

Countries that could face the biggest problems are Bangladesh, China, Egypt, Indonesia and Vietnam, where the FAO said the virus is still firmly entrenched.

It said recently affected areas included Israel, the Palestinian Territories, Bulgaria, Romania, Nepal and Mongolia.

“Wild birds may introduce the virus, but people’s actions in poultry production and marketing spread it,” said Lubroth.

“Preparedness and surveillance remain essential … no one can let their guard down with H5N1,” he added.

TX is dying – so what: Perfect Storm of Hype: Politicians, the media and the Hurricane Irene apocalypse that never was

August 28, 2011 by  
Filed under Americas

ED Note: The SW is dying…. Today it was 110 Degrees in the shade. Again. No rain for months… the makings of a new dust bowl. Yet you wont hear about it on the “news” In Fact, you won’t hear anything on the news except Irene – Apocalypse!

Sorry to hear that some lost their lives in the storm, but there are worse things going on in the world – Unfortunately.


ent on this article

A Cape Cod store owner took precautions but seemed to anticipate that Irene might be more benign than billedA Cape Cod store owner took precautions but seemed to anticipate that Irene might be more benign than billed. Photo: Toby Harnden

For the television reporter, clad in his red cagoule emblazoned with the CNN logo, it was a dramatic on-air moment, broadcasting live from Long Island, New York during a hurricane that also threatened Manhattan.

“We are in, right, now…the right eye wall, no doubt about that…there you see the surf,” he said breathlessly. “That tells a story right there.”

Stumbling and apparently buffeted by ferocious gusts, he took shelter next to a building. “This is our protection from the wind,” he explained. “It’s been truly remarkable to watch the power of the ocean here.”

The surf may have told a story but so too did the sight behind the reporter of people chatting and ambling along the sea front and just goofing around. There was a man in a t-shirt, a woman waving her arms and then walking backwards. Then someone on a bicycle glided past.

Across the screen, the “Breaking News: Irene Batters Long Island” caption was replaced by stern advice from the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA): “Stay inside, stay safe.”

The images summed up Hurricane Irene – the media and the United States federal government trying to live up to their own doom-laden warnings and predictions while a sizeable number of ordinary Americans just carried on as normal and even made gentle fun of all the fuss.

There was almost palpable disappointment among the TV big guns rolled out for the occasion when Irene was downgraded to a mere ‘tropical storm”. In New York city, CNN’s silver-haired Anderson Cooper, more usually seen in a tight t-shirt in a famine or war zone, was clad in what one wag dubbed “disaster casual”.

He looked crestfallen and fell briefly silent when a weatherwoman told him that the rain was not going to get any worse. “Wow, because this isn’t so bad,” he said. “It’s an annoying rain but it isn’t even a sideways rain.”

Then came the press conferences from the politicians, with Governor Chris Christie of New Jersey insisting that his evacuation of the Jersey Shore was “a pre-emptive measure that I am confident saved lives” and there could still be damage worth “tens of billions” of dollars.

Janet Napolitano, the Homeland Security chief, declared that there was “a ways to go with Irene” but “with the evacuations and other precautions taken we have dramatically decreased the risk to life”. Mayor Michael Bloomberg of New York seemed thoroughly delighted with himself, as if he personally had calmed the waters and stifled the winds.

The truth is that the dire warning beforehand suited both politicians and journalists. Just as with the minor earthquake that shook the east coast last week causing no loss of life and virtually no damage, Irene became a huge story because it was where the media lived.

For politicians, Irene was a chance to either make amends or appear in control. The White House sent out 25 Irene emails to the press on Saturday alone.

There were photographs of President Barack Obama touring disaster centres and footage of him asking sombre, pertinent questions. With his poll ratings plummeting, Obama needed to project an aura of seriousness and command. He was all too aware that the political fortunes of his predecessor George W Bush never recovered after the Hurricane Katrina disaster of 2005.

The press mostly reported the message the White House had carefully crafted: “Obama takes charge” read the headline of one wire service story.

At the state level, Irene was a chance for political redemption. Christie had been lambasted around the start of the year for taking a holiday during one of the worst snow storms in New Jersey history.

Bloomberg, who ordered a mandatory evacuation of residents in low-lying areas during Irene that thousands ignored, had been widely criticised for inadequate clean-up plans during the same blizzards.

There was some loss of life during Irene, though significantly less than during dozens of other weather events across the US this year.

Preparation for the worst-case scenario makes sense and could have saved hundreds during Katrina. But the worst-case scenario was largely portrayed as inevitable. Some of the footage of television reporters putting themselves in the most extreme position possible just to get the best “stand-up” live shot was beyond parody.

First prize went to Tucker Barnes, a reporter for Fox 5, who went live from Ocean City, Maryland amid a strange, brown foamy substance. He reported that it “didn’t taste great” and had a “sandy consistency”. Apparently, it was raw sewage:

As Howard Kurtz notes, The media and politicians enjoy a symbiotic relationship during possible impending disasters. The resultant perfect storm of hype over Irene runs the risk of making Americans even more like to ignore warnings in the future.

By lunchtime on Sunday, the sun was peeking through over New York. The TV anchors were expressing their relief at the good news that the east coast had “dodged a bullet” and Irene had not been the apocalypse they had predicted.

Perhaps it would be a bit too much to hope that they and certain politicians felt a little sheepish too.

« Previous PageNext Page »