Sunday 10 January 2010

Today I stumbled onto "The National (American) Corruption Index"

To give you some of its "flavor" what follows is a section I've excerpted from near the beginning of a rather longish
introduction to the NCI
which the journalists behind it
"designed as a kind of fact-focus telescope, with correlated lenses to transform information fragments into comprehensive, high definition views" :

"Though they reappear in numerous NCI profiles, at first they don’t seem related. With further review however, they reveal past and present connections in a viewable substructure of ingrained conflicts of interest, subtly understood quid pro quos and malfeasance/dereliction at the nation’s most vital command posts. Increasingly in recent years, influence buyers place orders with officials/sellers, in an open marketplace for US policy decisions.

From 1995 until 2002, a top Al Qaeda funder owned the software company (Ptech), that managed the US government's most sensitive IT systems. Those included the Departments of Defense, Justice, Energy, State, and the White House itself. It developed the FAA system in control on 9/11. A version of the software used by Ptech became the program required by the Patriot Act, for international banking compliance. The program's first marketing company was founded by President George W Bush’s brother Marvin. Marvin Bush? Yes.

According to declassified CIA documents, permission to annihilate Bin Laden at a Kandahar hunting camp in 1999, was denied at the highest level because a Dubai Prince was with him at the time. Leaving office two years later, former President Clinton began receiving millions from that Prince, now Prime Minister Mohammed bin Rashid al-Maktoum.

In August 2001, a Saudi billionaire later cited by the Justice Department as one of al qaeda’s top 20 financiers, bought a US aircraft company (Cirrus), which, now the nation’s largest of high tech small planes. The 911 hijackers original plan was to use small planes.

The Chinese government controls both sides of the Panama Canal, nearly half the Port of Los Angeles, and its state-owned company is contracted to detect nuclear material entering the US through the Bahamas.

One of the biggest current US Defense contractors is co-owned by the Bin Laden family. Same company (named Fluor) is among the top 10 in Katrina contract awards.

In 2000 Senate Majority Leader Tom Daschle created a law requiring the FAA to buy half of all new airport scanners from a company (L-3) that just retained his wife’s lobby firm. After 9/11, the scanners were found to be defective and unreliable. The FAA’s Patriot Act compliance was reportedly slowed by nearly two years.

Haley Barbour, current Governor of Mississippi (and former GOP Party Chairman), is a principal of a major, Iraq contracted, private military company. His partners include the son of the Syrian Baath Party founder, George W Bush's 2004 campaign chairman Joseph Albaugh, and another one of the President’s brothers, Neil.

Bill Clinton’s biggest lifetime contributor, Jackson Stephens, also arranged the bailouts, through terror-finance linked Saudi bankers, of George W Bush’s failing oil company ventures. Stephens also brokered the plan to bring, what prosecutors called the "largest financial fraud in world history," into the United States.The notorious, international bank was named BCCI. It was controlled by some of those same terror-linked Saudi bankers, most notably the Saudi Royals' personal banker Khalid bin Mahfouz. One of BCCI's lead attorneys was Hillary Clinton.

Now, try to recall a chunk of specific information in any of the above without scrolling back up. Not so easy, right?

Overloaded by the info age’s relentless rise of unavoidable incoming data, it's near impossible for us to find and keep track of essential context, let alone retrieve it at will.

National news reports of official wrongdoing, even regarding matters of vital concern, don’t provide immediate access to the relevant histories and relationships of, in New York police parlance, the kingpin “doers” involved.

That’s what the National Corruption Index seeks to provide: a one-stop shopping source for on-point profiles of key figures and companies in major compromises of critical national interest. Every name, agency, event or term found in each profile can be instantly accessed for all links throughout the Index."

As I (Clair) read down through a lot more of this material, I realized I had stumbled upon a very excellent source of documentation to bolster my perception that a very powerful web of hidden, insidious and sometimes surprising "connections" moves the levers of control in our world. And it's quite maddening, because most of the prime suspects have been 'getting away with it.' (However, one can only hope that more websites like this one lifting up "reality" to the light of day will perhaps make a difference - which is the main intention of those behind this site.)

Now, if you read this far, you might be muttering to yourself, "why hasn't this stuff come out in investigations?" Well, exactly. This is not someone's delusional pipe dream. Good hard investigative journalism is at the core of what this project represents.

The man who initiated this National Corruption Index is Steve Bauman, who lives in New York. His career in journalism has enjoyed some recognition over the years - but he doesn't work alone. All the others involved, other than himself, hold Master's degrees from Columbia University's School of Journalism - all working writers and reporters, highly "trained to pan fact nuggets from opinion dust."

Of course, as Mr. Bauman admits, "wisps of personal viewpoint might have slipped through the objective purity filters, but if so, they have had no influence on the overall professional grade of unbiased, verifiable information sought and contained in this index. So hold on to your skepticism. At the same time you're urged, as the slogan goes, to 'Just look it up.' "

Bauman urges readers to go right ahead and question the credibility of the information presented, but to do their own source checking. As the information gets confirmed, one comes to understand why NCI was created. "If there are any mistakes, they're unintended, hopefully small ones easily corrected. The facts shriek for themselves."

I urge people to at least read the introduction I cited above on their website. But you have to be in the mood for it.

As I'm sure you've gathered by now, it's really not much in the way of light reading at all, but (I think) definitely good fodder for a discussion group made up of people who've first done their homework. As we all know by now "there can be no peace without justice." And this site, in my judgement, models excellent investigative journalism in the pursuit of truth and justice.

-Clair in Canberra

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