Saturday, January 30, 2010

The Coming Nuclear War With Iran











Find out who the real terrorists are as we prepare to annihilate IRAN!!! The US has some serious payback for those filthy towel headed Iranians! Prepare to meet ALLAH!

The US administration is speeding up deployment of defenses against potential Iranian missile attacks in the Gulf to heed off any possible retaliation, The New York Times reported Saturday.
The move involves placing specialized ships off the Iranian coast and anti-missile systems in at least four Arab countries -- Qatar, the United Arab Emirates, Bahrain and Kuwait -- the Times said, citing administration and military officials.
Oman has also been approached, although no Patriot missiles have been deployed there yet, US officials told the newspaper, adding that the willingness of other Arab states to accept the US defenses reflects growing unease in the region over Iran's ambitions and capabilities.
"Our first goal is to deter the Iranians," a senior administration official told the newspaper. "A second is to reassure the Arab states, so they don't feel they have to go nuclear themselves. But there is certainly an element of calming the Israelis as well."
The deployments could also forestall any Iranian retaliation in response to the sanctions, as well as discourage staunch US ally Israel from launching a military strike against Tehran's nuclear and military facilities.
Washington is seeking to win over its allies to slap a fourth set of UN sanctions on Iran that would target the Iranian Revolutionary Guards Corps believed to control the military aspect of Tehran's controversial nuclear program.
Friday, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton upped the pressure on China to recognize the threat from Iran's nuclear program -- which Washington and its Western allies aims to produce nuclear weapons despite Tehran's insistence otherwise -- and join international calls for sanctions.
General David Petraeus, who heads the US Central Command that oversees US military operations stretching from the Gulf to Central Asia, said the sped-up deployment of missile systems included eight Patriot missile batteries, "two in each of four countries."
The unusually public comments about the accelerated deployments, which began under President Barack Obama's predecessor, George W. Bush, came during an address at the Institute for the Study of War in Washington on January 22.
"Iran is clearly seen as a very serious threat by those on the other side of the Gulf front, and indeed, it has been a catalyst for the implementation of the architecture that we envision and have now been trying to implement," he said at the time.
The United States was also keeping Aegis guided missile cruisers, equipped with advanced radar and anti-missile systems that can intercept medium-range missiles, on patrol in the Gulf at all times, according to Petraeus.
Though those systems are not designed to intercept Iran's long-range missile, the Times noted that intelligence agencies estimate it will take Tehran years before it can place a nuclear warhead atop the Shahab III.
A senior military official told the newspaper that Petraeus began speaking openly about the deployments about a month ago, as Tehran declined the Obama administration's offer of engagement and Washington faced growing challenges to impose sanctions against the Islamic Republic.

Initiatives with Arab nations, military aimed at thwarting Iran attacks
By Joby Warrick
Washington Post Staff Writer

DUBAI, UNITED ARAB EMIRATES - The Obama administration is quietly working with Saudi Arabia and other Persian Gulf allies to speed up arms sales and rapidly upgrade defenses for oil terminals and other key infrastructure in a bid to thwart future military attacks by Iran, according to former and current U.S. and Middle Eastern government officials.
The initiatives, including a U.S.-backed plan to triple the size of a 10,000-man protection force in Saudi Arabia, are part of a broader push that includes unprecedented coordination of air defenses and expanded joint exercises between the U.S. and Arab militaries, the officials said. All appear to be aimed at increasing pressure on Tehran.
The efforts build on commitments by the George W. Bush administration to sell warplanes and anti-missile systems to friendly Arab states to counter Iran's growing conventional arsenal. The United Arab Emirates and Saudi Arabia are leading a region-wide military buildup that has resulted in more than $25 billion in U.S. arms purchases in the past two years alone.

Middle Eastern military and intelligence officials said Gulf states are embracing the expansion as Iran reacts increasingly defiantly to international censure over its nuclear program. Gulf states fear retaliatory strikes by Iran or allied groups such as Hezbollah in the event of a preemptive strike against Iranian nuclear facilities by the United States or Israel.
For the Obama administration, the cooperation represents tangible progress against Iran at a time when the White House is struggling to build international support for stronger diplomatic measures, including tough new economic sanctions, a senior official said in an interview.
"We're developing a truly regional defensive capability, with missile systems, air defense and a hardening up of critical infrastructure," said the official, who is involved in strategic planning with Gulf states and who spoke on the condition of anonymity. "All of these have progressed significantly over the past year."
U.S. support for the buildup has been kept low-key to avoid fueling concerns in Israel and elsewhere about an accelerating conventional-arms race in the region. Iran, which has made steady advances in developing medium-range missiles, is seeking to acquire modern air-defense systems from Russia while also expanding its navy with new submarines and ships.
Gulf officials say their defensive improvements would be undertaken regardless of U.S. support, but some said they were encouraged by the supportive signals from the Obama administration, which regional leaders initially feared would be more accommodating of Iran than the Bush White House.
"It's a tough neighborhood, and we have to make sure we are protected," said a senior government official in a U.S.-allied Arab state. The official, who also spoke on the condition that his name and country not be revealed, called Iran the "No. 1 threat in the region."
Major arms buildups The expanded cooperation with the United States includes new agreements with Saudi Arabia to help establish a facilities-protection force under the country's Ministry of Interior to harden defenses for oil facilities, ports and water desalination plants. The new force is expected to grow to 30,000 personnel and will be used to deter attacks by al-Qaeda, as well as possible future strikes by Iran or Iranian-inspired terrorist groups, according to current and former officials familiar with the initiative. Washington is providing access to technology and equipment for the defense upgrade, the officials said.

Gulf states, particularly Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates, are also undertaking multibillion-dollar purchases of U.S.-made defensive systems. In the past two years, Abu Dhabi has topped the list of foreign customers for U.S. arms, buying $17 billion worth of hardware, including Patriot anti-missile batteries and an advanced anti-missile system known as Terminal High-Altitude Area Defense, or THAAD. Three other Middle Eastern countries are considering buying the same systems.
The UAE, which recently completed a purchase of 80 American-made F-16 fighter jets, last year was invited for the first time to participate in the U.S. Air Force's "Red Flag" exercises at Nellis Air Force Base in Nevada. The small Gulf country is in the process of negotiating a purchase of Rafale fighter jets.

A senior Emirati official familiar with the military exercises said UAE leaders want to enhance "interoperability" with U.S. defensive systems, as well as high-quality weapons.
"We don't measure ourselves by what our neighbors are doing," the official said. "We're interested in sophisticated training and the best and most capable platforms" available.
The country's buildup has impressed U.S. military officials, who say the U.S.-allied Emirates have emerged as a military power in their own right. In a speech in Bahrain last year, U.S. Centcom commander Gen. David A. Petraeus said the UAE air force alone "could take out the entire Iranian air force, I believe."

Although Gulf states are generally loath to publicly antagonize Tehran, the military expansion is occurring against a backdrop of anxiety over the growing dominance of Iran's hard-liners in the wake of last year's disputed presidential election. Like Washington, Arab capitals see Iran's nuclear program as dangerous and destabilizing, even if Iranian leaders stop short of building a nuclear warhead.
In interviews in three Middle East countries, political leaders and analysts said they fear that a nuclear-capable Iran will become the dominant regional power, able to intimidate its neighbors without fear of retaliation. Nearly all the Gulf countries have sizable Shiite Muslim populations with ties to Iran, and some analysts warned that Tehran may try to use these to stir up unrest and possibly even topple pro-Western governments.
"Nuclear weapons are probably most useful to Iran as a deterrent against attack by others, but beyond that, it's all about the swagger and mystique rather than the weapons system," said Nabil Fahmy, former Egyptian ambassador to the United States. "I can't see Iran using such weapons, but they could become much more provocative."
Regional nuclear fearsThe concern over Iran has partly eclipsed long-standing concerns about Israel, a military powerhouse with an undeclared nuclear arsenal that includes scores of warheads that can be delivered by aircraft, submarines or long-range ballistic missiles, some regional analysts said.
Iran's apparent progress toward nuclear-weapons capability has also heightened new fears of a regional arms race that will expand to include atomic bombs. Driving the concerns are new initiatives by several oil- and gas-rich Arab states to build nuclear reactors or power plants, ostensibly to augment domestic energy supplies. The UAE, with heavy U.S. support, recently signed deals to build its first nuclear power reactors. Among other countries taking or considering similar steps are Egypt, Saudi Arabia, Turkey, Kuwait, Jordan and Yemen.

Western and Middle Eastern analysts say it is unlikely that any of those countries will openly pursue nuclear weapons, a move that would probably draw international condemnation and prompt a suspension of Western aid. The UAE has taken pains to design a nuclear energy program that it says is proliferation-proof, eliminating parts of the nuclear fuel cycle that could be exploited to obtain material for bombs.
But if Iran were to test a nuclear device, all countries in the region would reconsider their options, government officials and analysts said.
"Every country in the region will open their files and decide again what to do," said a retired Arab general who asked for anonymity so he could speak freely about the subject. "If nuclear weapons appears to be the road to becoming a world power, why shouldn't that be us?"
Warrick, a Washington Post staff writer, reported as part of a fellowship with the International Reporting Project, an independent nonprofit journalism program based in Washington that provides grants to U.S. journalists to report overseas.

NETANYAHU AT AUSCHWITZ SAYS PROPHECIES OF EZEKIEL 37 HAVE BEEN FULFILLED
This weekend, Lynn and I are in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada, where I will be speaking at Break Forth, the largest evangelical Christian conference held in Canada every year. I will be teaching the prophecies of Ezekiel 36-39, the centrality of Israel in God’s plan and purpose for mankind in the last days, the threat of Radical Islam, and the importance of building a global movement of Christians committed to showing the peopel of the epicenter unconditional love and unwavering support.

As I prepare to teach a series of four 1-hour seminars on these topics today, I awoke to read news coverage of Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s address this week in Poland, commemorating the 65th anniversary of liberation of Auschwitz. Speaking on the actual site of the Nazi death camp, the Prime Minister delivered a major address warning the world of new genocidal threats against the Jewish people and the importance of acting early enough to prevent such threats from coming to pass. He also declared to the people of Europe and the world that the prophecies of Ezekiel 37 have been fulfilled.
It was an extraordinary moment. Rarely has any world leader given a major address on an international stage declaring End Times prophecies from the Bible have come true. But that is exactly what Netanyahu did.
Excerpts:
“The most important lesson of the Holocaust is that a murderous evil must be stopped early, when it is still in its infancy and before it can carry out its designs. The enlightened nations of the world must learn this lesson. We, the Jewish nation, who lost a third of our people on Europe’s blood-soaked soil, have learned that the only guarantee for defending our people is a strong State of Israel and the army of Israel. We gave learned to warn the nations of the world of impending danger but at the same time to prepare to defend ourselves. As the head of the Jewish state, I pledge to you today: We will never again permit evil to snuff out the life of our people and the life of our own country….”
“[After the Holocaust,” the Jewish people rose from ashes and destruction, from a terrible pain that can never be healed. Armed with the Jewish spirit, the justice of man, and the vision of the prophets, we sprouted new branches and grew deep roots. Dry bones became covered with flesh, a spirit filled them, and they lived and stood on their own feet. As Ezekiel prophesized: ‘Then He said unto me: These bones are the whole House of Israel. They say, ‘Our bones are dried up, our hope is gone; we are doomed.’ Prophecy, therefore, and say to them: Thus said the Lord God: I am going to open your graves and lift you out of your graves, O My people, and bring you to the land of Israel.’ I stand here today on the ground where so many of my people perished — and I am not alone. The State of Israel and all the Jewish people stand with me. We bow our heads to honor your memory and lift our heads as we raise our flag-a flag of blue and white with a Star of David in its center. And everyone sees. And everyone hears. And everyone knows – that our hope is not lost.”
The question for all Israelis and all people everywhere is now this: If the prophecies of Ezekiel 37 have come to pass in our lifetime, isn’t it remotely possible that the prophecies of Ezekiel 38-39 will come true in our lifetime as well? http://flashtrafficblog.wordpress.com/2010/01/29/netanyahu-at-auschwitz-says-prophecies-of-ezekiel-37-have-been-fulfilled/

Hackers target friends of Google workers






Personal friends of employees at Google, Adobe and other companies were targeted by hackers in a string of recently disclosed cyberattacks, raising privacy concerns and pointing to a highly sophisticated operation, security experts said.
Cybersecurity experts analysing the attacks said the hackers spied on individuals and used other sophisticated techniques, making them extremely difficult to stop. The disclosures come amid renewed alarm over cybersecurity after Google said it had been the target of a series of cyberattacks from China.

The most significant discovery is that the attackers had selected employees at the companies with access to proprietary data, then learnt who their friends were. The hackers compromised the social network accounts of those friends, hoping to enhance the probability that their final targets would click on the links they sent.

“We’re seeing a lot more up-front reconnaissance, understanding who the players are at the company and how to reach them,” said George Kurtz, chief technology officer at security firm McAfee.
“Someone went to the trouble to backtrack: ‘Let me look at their friends, who I can target as a secondary person’.”
McAfee discovered that a previously unknown flaw in Microsoft’s Internet Explorer had been used in the attacks. Mr Kurtz said the attackers also used one of the most popular instant messaging programmes to induce victims to click on a link that installed spy software.
Another element of the attack code used a formula only published on Chinese language websites, said Joe Stewart, a researcher for security firm SecureWorks. Mr Stewart also found that some of the code had been assembled in 2006, suggesting that the campaign had been not only well organised but enduring.
The evidence pointed to a government-sponsored effort that only large spy agencies or perhaps some of the most advanced big companies could have withstood, experts said. China on Monday described accusations it was behind cyberattacks as “groundless”.
Sam Curry, vice-president of security firm RSA, said: “This is a loud message for the commercial world, which is: wake up, this isn’t all happiness and goodness and new business.
“Doing business on the internet is as risky as sending ships through the Panama Canal.”

Lara Roxx Back Home And Safe In Canada






Perching on the edge of a bed in her ex-boyfriend's apartment above a used appliance shop on Papineau, native Montrealer Lara Roxx contemplates the possibility that the moment she became infected with HIV could become part of an upcoming porn movie.
"It's pretty creepy. I mean, are you going to sell the sex scene where Lara Roxx caught HIV? It's like you're only thinking about money. It's disgusting. Don't use it, I don't care if I signed the release, don't use it."
Throughout the interview, Roxx's cell phone rings a ludicrously loud funky tone. Her first call prompts her to grab a fat marker, which she uses to write down a list of homeless shelters welcoming the HIV-positive. Just weeks ago the 21-year-old Montrealer was spending the ample earnings of 15 locally-shot sex scenes. But on March 24, Roxx - a stage name that combines reference to Lara Croft and a taste for jewellery - was infected with HIV in Los Angeles by Darren James in a condom-free double anal scene in which she was simultaneously sodomized by James and Marc Anthony. Now she's homeless, broke and HIV-positive.
Roxx says she feels fine so far except for her nerves. "I have anxiety crises, I go through headaches and stomach pains when people argue with me," she says.
She says she has focused her life on starting a home for HIV-positive people. "Emotionally I've been doing my own therapy by planning a foundation. Talking about it helps me feel really good."
The Lara Roxx Foundation would welcome "people under 25 who are broke financially and emotionally, who are mentally stable and HIV-positive. If your family is rejecting you, it will be like the Ronald McDonald mansion, but for people who have HIV." Roxx also provides a wish list for her camp, which includes boating and horseback riding. She'd also live there.
Lured by lucre
Roxx started in the world of adult entertainment as a dancer in clubs like SuperSexe, where she'd earn "$400 or $500 a day." But the lure of more money beckoned. "I thought that the money I was making with 10 customers, I could make that with one guy." Her first film experience, on January 10, was with local producer Bruno B. "I was managing myself back then, and at first it went well. He was really nice, and we spoke for 45 minutes before he told me stuff like exactly how big his penis was. He had the condom but he came on my face, which was really disgusting. But I felt I had to get used to that if I was going to be in porn for two or three years."
Roxx found herself pulling in $2,000 for a few hours' work a week, and spending much of the loot on consumer goods. "I decorated my room and bought a lot of nice clothes, I bought CDs, a CD player - no, actually that was my father's gift - and these super Koss speakers. It's a real nice room now but I'm not allowed on that property because my mom kind of kicked me out with the assistance of the cops. If I go back there I could get arrested."
Initially Roxx says she had her mother's blessings to have hardcore sex on camera. "My mom doesn't approve of me being HIV-positive. But at the time, she thought that if you feel comfortable with what you're doing, it's okay. I wasn't comfortable but I thought I was, and I was convincing myself that I was. But I wasn't on drugs to have to do it. It was me talking to myself, like, ‘Come on, you can do it.'
"I felt that it was safe. I have a friend doing it and she has a baby and is still with her man and everything is going well for them. I thought everything would go well for me too."
Condom problems
Roxx hooked up with professional management when her ex-boyfriend, photographer Denis Lefebvre, introduced her to manager Daniel Perreault. "Perreault really convinced me that it wasn't worth it for him to represent me or for me to waste my time waiting on contracts if I insisted on doing condoms only."
At Perreault's home studio at Belanger and 26th Avenue in Rosemount, Roxx filmed her first-ever anal scene with Darren James on February 10. Roxx says she and producer Marc Anthony got along well. "He was being all friendly but James really didn't like me. I thought he was really ugly and I didn't want to do it with him. I'm attracted to black men but not Darren James, he's just not cute and he has an ugly face. We did the scene and it just got worse. I was trying to take my time to relax and feel safe about it and he was just trying to get it done, in and out."
Although Roxx filmed 15 scenes in 10 weeks, she felt she could earn more in Los Angeles, so after making her way down there she found that Marc Anthony wanted her for another film starring James. "I was like, ‘Oh my God, we worked together and [James] hated me and now we're going to have to work with each other again.' And then I was actually happy because I thought they were never going to hire me again."
Upon arriving on the set she was told that she'd have to do a double anal or else not get the scene. Her resistance was worn down fast. "I felt like I was doing something wrong, that they were the professionals and I was the rookie and I'm not supposed to be asking all these questions before the shoot. Maybe I'm just supposed to open my legs and that's all they want in this industry. That's one of the things I intend to change. I want to change it so the girl gets more respect than that."
Says her lawyer, Daniel Lighter: "She went to L.A. because it is supposedly the most professional and sophisticated place in the world for people to do this type of work. She left as a perfectly healthy girl and came back with a death sentence."
Lighter says there is no doubt that she got the infection from James, and that recent viral load tests have shown James has had the infection longer than her. He adds that he is considering legal action in California against "the actors, agents and corporations who shot or oversaw the shooting of the scene."
Domain name disputed
Several funds have been set up to help her and two other actresses - Jessica Dee and Miss Arroyo - who contracted HIV via James, but Roxx says she has not yet received a cent. She also complains that purportedly sympathetic porn industry managers have snatched up the rights to her Web site, http://www.lararoxx.com/, which she wants to use to as a tool to start her foundation. She says that in the days following the breaking of her story, millions went to the site only to be redirected to porn sites. The site now redirects - as she has requested - to an AIDS awareness site.
Later during the afternoon of our interview Roxx starts on a flurry of calls inquiring about any funds that may have been raised. She leaves messages. She's also hoping for some progress on incorporating a charitable foundation and begs generous souls to send cheques for The Lara Roxx Foundation to her lawyer at: Daniel Lighter In Trust, 500 Place d'Armes, Suite 2350, Montreal, H2Y 2W2.
At the end of a series of dead ends, Roxx finally gets a bit of bright news: her lawyer informs her that Entertainment Tonight will fly her to New York and pay her $3,500 (U.S.) to tape an interview. She's happy for the publicity. "I don't want to do what my mom would want, which is to hide and be sad and think bad ideas. I'd rather act. I want people to still talk about me because I want them to see that I'm doing something good in society."
Along with dreams of starting an HIV camp, Roxx - who says her physical intimacy since the moment she was infected entails a single hug - also wants to direct "horror-type films" and has a career in rap in view.
"I'd love to work with Dr. Dre and Timberlake," she says before opening up a notebook to rap an autobiographical number: "Do you think you are better than me?/I bet you are scared of my disease/You are stuck on HIV I see/You probably say Lara Roxx on TV, Lara Roxx on the rocks, you see/Only one person to be judging me, it's not you, you see, you've got problems just like me."

On Roxx in a hard place
http://www.montrealmirror.com/ARCHIVES/2004/060304/letters.htmlI just read the "Post-porn plans" story [May 13]. Was it your intention to have people feel sorry for poor little Lara Roxx? Lara Roxx was once a stripper earning $400–$500 a day. Then she learned she could make more if she did the deed on film - up to $2,000 a week. To my understanding, if she hadn't contracted HIV, she would still be doing it - without condoms, might I add.
Making money, buying nice clothes, decorating her room and buying CDs while thinking nothing of it. Now she wants to raise AIDS awareness?! What was she doing last October when thousands of Canadians were walking in Ça Marche? Was she buying all her clothes every spring at the Farah Foundation designer sale? Has she ever heard of the Farah Foundation? Or any other AIDS awareness groups?
She wants to blame Darren James, who made the choice not to use a condom. For what? A few thousand dollars? There are so many people out there who are infected with HIV because they were in what they thought were trusting relationships, except their partners never told them they were HIV. Who deserve more sympathy than Lara Roxx. Unfortunately, they will never get it nor ask for it.
Those fags deserved it, right? Let's hope your story, Lara Roxx, sad as it is, gets through to many unfortunate little girls who want to be part of the porn industry. It doesn't pay! In any case, good luck and God bless you.
» HIV and Pissed

On the Roxx
How a local aspiring porn starlet met disaster http://www.montrealmirror.com/ARCHIVES/2004/042904/cover_news.html
Montrealer Lara Roxx wasn't a household name unless your house was extremely conversant with porn stars from such lesser-known Web sites as Hand Job Auditions. And, until a few weeks ago, few outside her circle of friends knew the dark-haired porn actress, whose tragic journey would lead some to predict the end of pornography as we know it.
Prior to her brief career having sex in front of cameras, Roxx danced in local strip clubs where she met a porn photographer, whom she dated for a year and a half. After working as an escort, Roxx, with help from manager Daniel Perreault, devoted herself to the full-time pursuit of becoming a porn actress in early January 2004. Dugmor, a well-known local porn-site promoter immediately recognizable for his combination of Asian ancestry and wild dreadlocks, shot her for his sites Throat Jobs (http://www.throatjobs.com/) and Hand Job Auditions (http://www.handjobauditions.com/).
Lara Roxx shot her first unprotected anal sex scene with Darren James, the man who later allegedly gave her HIV, here in Montreal on February 10. "I thought he was old and ugly," she told Mark Kernes, senior editor of http://www.avn.com/, who interviewed her immediately after she learned of her test results. James and Roxx subsequently tested negative for HIV.
New to anal
Anal sex wasn't supposed to be part of her act. Just weeks before, Roxx apparently told Perreault she wouldn't shoot such scenes. "I told him I wasn't interested in anal at all and I was a little freaky about the no-condom thing too. I've been educated about STDs since Grade 3. I told him what I was ready to do and he told me he wasn't ready to represent me under those conditions," Kernes quotes her as saying.
Perreault, however, portrays himself as Roxx's protector and claims that he discouraged her from taking the fateful trip to Los Angeles where she would apparently become infected with HIV. "I told her not to go because she wasn't ready, it was all still relatively new for her," Perreault tells the Mirror.
Roxx, citing a need for cash, opted to go to Los Angeles where she hooked up for round two with Darren James and Marc Anthony, who had been shooting sex films in Brazil. At a press conference, Marc Anthony estimated that James had sex with at least 10 to 15 women while in Brazil, and he had no idea that James had returned to L.A. with HIV. He, Roxx and Anthony filmed a double-penetration scene March 24.
"When I got there, me and Marc had a little conversation," Roxx told Kernes. "Marc Anthony tells me it's a d.a., which stands for double anal. And I'm like, ‘What? I've never done a double anal.' And he's like, ‘Well, that's what we need. It's either that or nothing.'"
Adverse to condoms
Judy Star and Patricia Petite, two other Montreal-based performers managed by Perreault, were also exposed to the bug by the duo. The Journal de Montréal reported that Star remains HIV-negative. Petite's status is unconfirmed and, at presstime, no official announcement has been made.
"Nobody in the industry could predict such a thing. That's why as agents and producers, we'll try to put rules into place to avoid another crisis like this," says Perreault, who dislikes the idea of enforced condom use. "It could be an option but [so could] more rigorous testing and quarantine for persons who travel to places like Brazil, where the HIV rates are very, very high and health standards are lower and people buy fake test results for $10."
In an e-mail to the Mirror, Kernes doubts that Roxx fully recognizes the tragedy of her plight. "I don't think the full import of her status has sunk in yet. I think many young folks, especially in the porn business, tend to think of themselves as immortal when faced with life-threatening situations like HIV."
A fund for Roxx and others stricken with HIV has been set up by Jenna Jameson. For more info, see http://www.adultfund.com/.

One afternoon last week I was surfing porn in a Laval café.
Sitting with me was Lara Roxx. We were trying to figure out if she was in the movie Split That Booty 2.
Neither of us had seen the original Split That Booty. I'm sure it wasn't a fish-out-of-water story starring Ray Liotta and Helen Mirren.
Lara was curious if she was in the sequel, because it was while shooting that film that she contracted the HIV virus.
There in big letters beneath the crouching girl with the white hotpants is written LARA COX, the less-than-Flintstonesque alternate name for the 22-year-old.
You'll recall how the news of her infection shook up the world of porn last year. California legislators promised to force condoms onto all actors, before quickly abandoning the idea.
Lara has since been hanging around in deepest Laval, watching TV.
I'd wager that Lara has the loudest ring tone on the planet. The cellular subwoofer is surely draining her battery. Before the phone went dead she got a call from some porn star in L.A. informing her of six starlet acquaintances recently sidelined for 10 days with "the clam." Chlamydia.
"I have friends from down there who aren't in porn, you know," she tells me. "I make friends easily."
Lara doesn't seem to ever say anything bad about anybody else, although she'd be well within her rights to do so.
On one discussion site for pornographers, several posters make vitriolic, mega-mean-spirited put-downs of Roxx.
On a local discussion forum, rumours fly about her re-entering the sex trade. She has no such intention. But it wouldn't necessarily be illegal if she did. Thus far under Canadian law, only HIV-positive people who have knowingly had unprotected sex without informing their partner have been convicted of criminal charges.
In spite of her name appearing on the Split That Booty 2 box, Lara's photo was nowhere.
Eventually we gave up as she checked her e-mail and an HIV-positive dating site, where her profile reads, "Who's afraid of a porn star?" I encouraged her to write back a 37-year-old in Edmonton. She considered him too old but wrote back anyway.
I rang up Luke Ford, the porn journalist from L.A., to ask if I was being too dainty in thinking it ghoulish to market a film of somebody contracting a deadly disease. The Australian-born Ford is a bit of a celebrity eccentric. He reports on porn scandals while struggling to practice his adopted Jewish faith.
Ford's answer was surprisingly cold. "I don't consider it any more heinous than selling other porn. She signed a contract for the rights of the scene no matter the consequences. It's just like you could still see a ballplayer breaking a leg or spine or getting killed in the performance of his sport. I don't see much of a difference between selling a video wherein somebody contracts a deadly disease to selling a video wherein you see somebody's soul die."
Ford says that he's noticed something "dying within" porn starlets after a while. "The more I see, the more I've become hardened and negative in my views. At first I thought it was just consenting adults doing risqué things. Now I see it as more damaging."
He notes that Brooke Ashley caught HIV in The World's Biggest Anal Gangbang, which was available for all to see. "I don't know a single instance where a producer has been smitten by conscience," Ford says.
Eventually I got somebody on the phone at TT Boy Productions, the company that made the movie. He refused to provide his name but reassured me that Lara had been cut out of the film.
Lara trudges on. She's slated to start a job for $11 an hour downtown as a customer service rep. She sometimes sweats at night and wonders why.
She's still determined to start a foundation to help others stricken with HIV and encourages others to help, which they can do by e-mailing lararoxx@yahoo.com.
"The money will go to people that are HIV positive and all alone," she says.
Comments? kgravy@openface.ca

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Od Yosef Chai Yeshiva Rabbi Yitzhak Shapira Arrested As Arson Suspect In December Mosque Fire!!!










Oy Vey!! If a Jewish Temple in the US was torched, it would be the hate crime equivalent to the holocaust! But it seems to be okay for religous kooks and zealots of the Jewish persuasion to torch Islamic Mosques!
After yeshiva students arrested on suspicions of being involved in the mosque arson in Yasuf village, Rabbi Yitzhak Shapira, head of the Od Yosef Chai Yeshiva, which is near Yitzhar, was arrested on Tuesday and investigated by Judea and Samaria District Police.
The police are trying to determine what his connection is, if any, to the grave event. The rabbi was transferred to the Shin Bet investigation facilities in Petah Tikva.

Rabbi Shapira's lawyer, Attorney Adi Keidar from the Honenu Organization, said to Ynet, "The rabbi denies any connection to the event and is not cooperating with his investigators."
According to Attorney Keidar, the investigators are tying Shapira to the arson of the mosque.Keidar said that Shapira told the investigators that "in light of the Israel Police's conduct and their treatment of rabbis recently, he is not cooperating with them."
"We see Rabbi Shapira's detention as crossing a red line in terms of the Shin Bet's behavior in general, and in terms of the current affair in particular," said Attorney Keidar.

Dozens of settlers arrived at the Shin Bet facility to support the rabbi. Knesset Member Michael Ben-Ari (National Union) said during the rally that the police's conduct was redolent of "dark, oppressive regimes".
Last week, a number of suspects from Yitzhar were arrested, including some yeshiva students, on suspicions of being involved in torching in the mosque in the nearby Palestinian village, as well as other offenses. Five of them – three minors and two young men from two yeshivas in the area – are still being detained.

Remand of all of the detainees was extended until Thursday, when it will be clarified whether or not an affidavit will be submitted on their behalf prior to the issuance of indictments.
In response to Shapira's arrest, Knesset Member Michael Ben-Ari (National Union) said: "I am appalled by the arrest of Rabbi Shapira. I condemn Israel Police, which is behaving in the manner of dark, oppressive regimes. Pouncing on the residents of Yitzhar arouses suspicions of an unrestrained lynch against members of the settlement."

The mosque was set ablaze on December 11. Hebrew slurs were sprayed on the walls that said: "We will burn all of you." The words "price tag" were also scrawled on the walls.

"Price tag" is the slogan adopted some months ago by extremist settlers who carry out reprisals against Palestinians in response to the evacuation of settlement structures by Israeli defense forces.

Clashes broke out between residents of Yasuf and IDF forces stationed near the village. When the villagers left Friday prayers, some of them threw stones at the IDF forces in the village. As a result, a Border Guard officer was lightly wounded. The soldiers fired live fire and tear gas in response. Five Palestinians sustained light injuries as a result.

http://failedmessiah.typepad.com/failed_messiahcom/2010/01/rabbi-questioned-over-mosque-attack-234.html

http://www.newstin.com/rel/us/en-010-022097158

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

http://www.ynetnews.com/articles/0,7340,L-3840527,00.html

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

State Of The Union- The War For Your Mind And Soul























The US has become a subprime nation, with a convenience store, use once, throw it away mentality based on fucking your neighbor over so you profit, get rich quick, easy money, lottery-Vegas ethos. Instead of espousing the pithy virtues of Ben Franklin, we are in debt up to our eyeballs and looking to borrow more knowing that a bailout will never come. We pay staggering interest to the fat cat bankers, but, we don't care as long as they float us another loan to keep us solvent.

The military industrial complex begs our government for more defense contracts thereby enriching the owners and shareholders, while Congress has to borrows more money to pay for these contracts. We fight war for oil and other resources based on lies of the Bush and Obama administrations.

We were lied to by the 911 Commission as to what really transpired that day. Bush and Cheyney would only testify before the Commission if they did not have to swear under oath that the testimony they gave was true. They testified, but they lied. We went to war against Iraq because W's old man did not finish the job because of a UN mandate. W said the UN be damned and Powell and Rice knowingly lied in their testimony. These people in my opinion, are TRAITORS and War Criminals.
The conspiracy theorists will tell you the Israeli Mossad was behind the attack and they present compelling evidence to back their claims. All of the hijackers were Saudi Arabians to whom W transferred NUCLEAR TECHNOLOGY to in his last year in office.

The Israeli's say that any claim implicating Israel is Anti-Semetic, and any criticism of the State of Israel is so too.!
But there are clear ties going back to Israel. Jewish, Israeli-US dual citizens and zionist have infiltrated our government at every level from the military to the State Department to all levels of the bereacracy. The Ivy league schools, the law and medical schools are predominantly made up of Jews because of their supposedly superior iq. Once entrenched in the government, they use their connections to further the State of Israel.

How is it that Israel with a population of about 7.2 million people [that 1.8 million people fewer that Haiti!], is entitled to billions in US aid while we still have people living in trailers after Katrina? We purchased their allegiance with billions in taxpayer dollars, bought their armed forces for them and even helped them gain nuclear weapons. The Jewish lobby AIPAC is the single most influential lobby in Congress .

Israeli intelligence services blackmail our politicians using any means they can. They recorded Bill Clinton's phone sex calls with Monica Lewinski, the use gay sex and pedastry, drugs, bribes and murder to keep our Congressional representatives in check. Our diplomates and executives are plied with every temptation known to man and once they become compromised they they then become the other sides property.

The Israeli's steal land from the indigenous people of Palestine, corral them in Gaza or the West Bank and destroy their olive trees, take their homes and kill them for sport. The fucking people are worse than the Nazi's! And yet they sound the drumbeat of war against Iran. Both the Jews and the Muslims are fucking religious nuts who will kill you because what is wriiten in a book! The Torah or the Koran!

Since the Bush Administration gave no reasonable, logical or intelligent explanation as to what happened on 911, I'll have to take stock in what the conspiracy theorists with their extensive research have conclude. Where was our CIA and FBI on the lead up to 911, of course these agencies have been infiltrated by the Jews and have been compromised.

Our DEA is on the take of the drug lords and drug cartels. Since we invaded Afghanistan the flow of drugs from there has only increased and billions have been made by the intelligence agencies to fund their black ops programs. What essentially happened on 911 was a Coup d'etat by unknown entities to financially cripple this country and personally enrich themselves.
Where were the US Air Force Jets on that day? They could have been onstation within minutes flying at maximum mach!? Why did the Twin Towers collapse at free fall speed and end up being vaporized in less than 14 seconds?!
Our banks are under the influence of the Jew Bankers who profit handsomely from a little entity called the Federal Reserve
http://www.john-f-kennedy.net/thefederalreserve.htm
Like the International Jew Bankers in Europe, the Muslim Bankers in the Middle and Far East, they will gladly lend for handsome profits even though there is an element of risk.
Our Great Military is used for the political ambitions of the power mad politicians and the behind the scenes players who pull their strings.
These politicians have been compromised and
are in full damage control mode when any of their shady background comes to light. Look at W, it was revealed, right before the 2000 election, he was arrested for drunk driving in Maine.
He hired attorney Alberto Gonzales to get him out of jury duty when he was Governor of Texas, so he did not have to reveal that arrest on the jury questionnaire under penalty of perjury.
W's Air National Guard Service was also questionable. Reportedly, he did not show up to Guard duty so he did not have to be piss tested since he was an avid cocaine user.
His relationship with Jeff Gannon, notorious gay escort was also brought into question. Rumors swirled W's wife Laura left him on a number of occasions and stayed at the Watergate Hotel while he got drunk and carried on with Jeff Gannon and Condaleeza Rice. Bush like Kim Jong II envsioned himself as the great leader.
Bush and the Republicans bankrupted this country, deployed our military unnecessarily in Iraq as he knowingly lied about the cause of action all while using 911 as a pretext for war.

Yes, we tortured, raped and killed prisoners in Iraq and Cuba and Afghanistan as well as black sites accross the world. The sadistic American prison guards liked nothing more than torturing the Muslim prisoners and ejaculating on their Korans after they raped and sodomized the blindfolded bound guests at the rendition centers. Gay Army prison guards would then smoke pot and participate in gay orgies on their off duty hours and brag about how many prisoners they tortured, raped or killed that day. These sadistic motherfuckers were in heaven!

Obama was elected because he promised so much! But Bush by the time he and Cheyney had left office they had fucked everything up so badly, that it will take multiple generations to work out of the wreckage they caused in 8 short years. Today, I tuned into Sean Hannity briefly and he ran a little sound bite of Reagan saying, "the government can spend no more than what they take in!", this is from a President who was responsible for thr first trillion dollar debt and had budget deficits of billions of dollars each year of his presidency. Then Hannity took a call from a retired deputy sheriff from Fort Lauderdale who complained to Hanitty about the unions spending big money on elections. She went on to reveal that she belonged to the union as a deputy sheriff and her son was in the boilermakers union! Hannity spieled about the "gold plated" health care plans that the unions had won through collective bargaining would not be taxed for 5 years. This is from someone who is a multimillionaire and can afford the best policy money can buy. All against the backdrop of a Supreme Court decision that ruled a corporation is a person and can use its big money to influence an election- free speech right?

Our youth has turned to guns and violence to solve their problems, following the example of Bush and Cheyney. They are fed crack, weed and ecstacy as well a crystal meth and LSD to reformat the harddrives they call brains and are reprogrammed with ganster rap videos, music and ultraviolent and sexual messages by the merchants who craft their advertising messages to manipulated these consumers to buy their products, relay to them what is cool and to have sex no matter what the consequences, AIDS or pregnancy. A premium is paid to those in the culure who drop out of high school, can't read and want to get their hustle on by staying high and fucking anything with a hole. The people who craft their advertising messages and political messages love these people because they act on impulse, on emotion and are so easily manipulated. They love to hate but cannot love. They are souless zombies, progeny spawned in lust. These masses of underclass fill our prisons and tax our social service agencies, yet continue to commit crime, fuck like rabbits and pop out kids paid for by your tax dollars.

The taxpayers want it all, they demand big government without paying big taxes. Look at the executives of the tobacco companies who in the 90's, testified before Congress that they had no idea nicotine caused cancer! It ended up with big tobacco paying a settlement that was distributed among the states. The settlement immunized them against future litigation-they got off cheap and Americans got fucked again by corporate America. The cigarettes they produce contain a multitude of poisons to keep you hooked. The states for their part have taxed the hell out of this product and raised the cost of a pack of smokes from $1.70 to over $7.00 in 1o short years. The states have resorted to legalized gambling so they can add a new revenue stream to fund their bloated budgets and pay for the patronage jobs the politicians have created.

The total casualty count from the war does not include those injured in Iraq and later died of their injuries. If it did, the true number of deaths would be well over 10,000. Legless, armless, paralyzed, brain damage veterans are nothing more than collateral damage, incidental to overall war operations. We need to bring our troops home, retrench and rebuild to prepare for the Chinese who are arming themselves at an incredible rate so they can rule the Indo-Pacific oceans of their realm.

The US Government continues to prefer spending hundreds of billions on defense while at the same time our young people are forced to take out 10's of thousands in student loans in order to get the skills and education they need to prepare for jobs that are not there or that pay 18-20k, with no bebefits, no stock, no insurance and no retirement! Corporations like Walmart exploit a desperate work force with the rationalization that they offer jobs to those who would otherwise not have one. Walmart takes out life insurance on all its' employees and when one of them kicks the bucket, Walmart is the beneficiary!
In summary, we have been fucked over by those whose greed and lust for power has no interest in the public interest. They operate in the shadows and the mainstream media refuses to expose them because of their corporate masters and pressure from the adverisers. During Vietnam and the Johnson - Nixon era, the US government repeatedly lied to the country as they waged war in Vietnam, toppled governments unfriendly to US corporate interests and expanded the American Empire. People in this country were so pissed, they took to the streets and participated in mass protests to end the war and the corruption in Washington. Fast foward 35+ years and you culd not attend a Bush rally without a ticket and protestors are confined to "free speech zones". People are now afraid to criticize the government, snitch on their neighbors and support "the State" without question because doing otherwise would be "unpatriotic".

Under Bush and Cheyney the US lost any moral authority it may have had, by lying us into a war, failing to fully investigate 911, letting the bankers exploit the borrowers with unique financial products, failed to kill or capture Bin Laden, killed over a million Iraquis, and supported the racist, apartheid state of Israel as they evicted Palestinians from their lawful homes to make room for Israeli settlers. The US stood by during "Operation Cast Lead" when Israel flew over 2,000 sorties, dropped tons of bombs including the use of phosphorus bombs and destroyed over 10,000 homes and killed hundreds of children and women in the Gaza territory.

If and when sanity is restored then bipartisan, peaceful measures will move the country foward. Until then we remain a country under siege by its' own elected government. It is our duty as citizens to out the fraudsters, the banksters and the corporate racketeers and reclaim our government from the influence of the wealthy and the corporate media and others who do not have the best interest of the public at heart and look only to enrich themselves while we taxpayers are left with such a staggering bill that within 3 years over one third of all income tax revenues will go to pay just the interest only on the national debt! Immediate direct action is required to change the Bush legacy and the so called "Bush Economic Miracle" that has destroyed our economy and left our nation trillions of dollars in debt.

I will not be suprised if another wave of political assasinations take place as did occur in the 1960's, race riots break out and the cost of oil hits $600 dollars a barrel. This does not have to occur if we can immediately change our direction and save ourselves from ourselves. Only time will tell.
For Today...,

Monday, January 25, 2010

Avatar's earthlings not nearly as monstrous as Bush





Is the top-selling movie in the history of the world, the 3D science-fiction blockbuster Avatar, really about the US-led invasion of Iraq in 2003?
Ostensibly, it is about a US corporation that invades the planet Pandora in 2154 to extract a precious mineral - even if it has to displace the three-metre-tall blue people who live there. But yes, it's supposed to be a metaphor for the invasion of Iraq.
How can we be sure?
For a start, there are the clues in the dialogue, as subtle as toe-stubbing. The military commander of the earthlings echoes George Bush as he builds a rationale for first strike: "Our survival relies on pre-emptive action."
The earthlings' description of the assault as a "shock and awe" attack is a direct steal from the Pentagon's marketing line for its initial bombing of Baghdad. It's a reminder you just paid $18 to watch a commentary on US foreign policy (including 3D glasses).
The director spelt it out for us. Canadian-born James Cameron said last month: "We went down a path that cost several hundreds of thousands of Iraqi lives. I don't think the American people even know why it was done. So it's all about opening your eyes."
The movie succeeds in one kind of eye-opening. It cleverly transfers the viewer's empathy from the earthlings to the blue people. Cameron wants Americans - and, presumably, their British and Australian allies - to see their own side of the conflict from the viewpoint of the other: "We know what it feels like to launch the missiles. We don't know what it feels like for them to land on our home soil, not in America. I think there's a moral responsibility to understand that."
But Avatar fails to open anyone's eyes to the realities of the invasion of Iraq. If that is Cameron's aim, he has failed.
The invasion of Iraq was much worse. In Cameron's movie, the Americans are brutal but honest. They invade to extract the precious resource. The real-world Americans of the Bush invasion were utterly dishonest.
The Bush administration made two principal arguments for invading Iraq. One, that there was some collusion between the perpetrator of the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001, Osama bin Laden's al-Qaeda, and the Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein.
There was no collusion. The men were enemies. But Bush pressed hard to confect some connection. On the day after the attacks, he grabbed his top counterterrorism official, Dick Clarke, as they left a meeting in the White House situation room. Clarke wrote in his 2004 book, Against All Enemies, that Bush said to him: "See if Saddam did this."
Clarke was surprised. He knew Bush had been told definitively by the intelligence services that al-Qaeda was responsible: "But, Mr President, al-Qaeda did this."
Bush: "I know, I know, but … see if Saddam was involved. Just look. I want to know any shred."
Bush had decided to invade Iraq long before the terrorists struck. September 11 was not the reason for the invasion; it was a political marketing opportunity. After all the rumoured and concocted connections were debunked, the pro-invasion hawks continued to press the theme. Bush's secretary of state, the prudent Colin Powell, cut all such references from drafts of his much-awaited speech to the United Nations Security Council, where he made the case for the invasion.
"Even after Powell threw material out, it would occasionally be quietly put back in," according to a 2004 book by the US intelligence expert, James Bamford, titled A Pretext for War.
A senior White House aide, Steve Hadley, sneaked the collusion claim back into the speech and, according to Bamford, when Powell got an admission from Hadley, he yelled at him "Well, cut it, permanently!"
What was left? Only the claim that Saddam was hiding weapons of mass destruction. Powell was foolish enough to make it, displaying artists' impressions of trucks he said were mobile germ-warfare labs, to his eternal chagrin. The invasion followed. Thousands of allied soldiers, and probably about 100,000 Iraqis to date, died as a result.
The WMD was an officially sponsored fiction. But the detailed story of how this claim was created and spun is extraordinary. In the journalist Bob Drogin's authoritative book, Curveball, he relates how the CIA director George Tenet assured Powell that their evidence was from an Iraqi defector who had worked on the WMD himself. The evidence supplied by the defector, codenamed Curveball, had been corroborated by three sources, Tenet said. Powell repeated this claim to the world.
After the invasion, the famous American weapons hound David Kay was tasked with finding the WMD. He asked the CIA about Curveball. What was he like to talk to? "Well, we've never actually talked to him," came the CIA reply. "You're kidding me, right?" Kay replied. But it was not a joke.
Curveball was in the hands of German intelligence. The Germans warned the CIA repeatedly that Curveball's evidence could not be verified. It turned out he was a liar. In the years he claimed to have been working on Saddam's secret WMD, he was actually driving a Baghdad taxi. Kay asked the CIA official about the three corroborating sources. "There really are no other sources," came the answer.
Filling out the picture of the Bush administration's betrayal of the US and its forces is the recent book by the journalist David Finkel, The Good Soldiers. It reports on a US infantry battalion in Iraq. Well-intentioned, hard-working, hopelessly uncomprehending, suffering bitterly, they, like the Iraqi people, were the ultimate dupes of the Bush-Cheney deception.
So Avatar doesn't tell us anything much about why the US invaded Iraq unprovoked. Or why its allies followed lamely along, in service of a lie. But it is in 3D.
Peter Hartcher is the Herald's international editor.

GOP-linked company tracks online users’ ‘loan-worthiness’







Want a bank loan? Get yourself more Facebook friends — but make sure they pay their bills on time.
Banks are beginning to look at user accounts on Facebook, Twitter and other social networking sites to determine if an applicant is loan-worthy, raising privacy concerns as well as questions over whether a person’s online friends, likes and dislikes can actually measure their financial stability.
Everything a person does publicly on their social-networking accounts can be found by market researchers if the user’s privacy settings allow it. Researchers are now looking at a person’s online conversations, the groups they join, products they look at and even who their friends are to determine loan-worthiness.
“The presumption is that if your friends are responsible credit cardholders and pay their bills on time, you could be a good credit customer,” reports WTOP News in Washington, DC.
“Lenders say having a wide network of friends can expedite getting a loan, while discrepancies between your loan application and your Facebook wall information can raise red flags. Negative comments about your business also can impact your creditworthiness,” WTOP reports.Story continues below…
At the forefront of this effort is a California-based startup called Rapleaf, which specializes in “provid[ing] social data about a company’s audience,” the company’s Web site states.
According to a report at CreditCards.com, Rapleaf turns “conversations you have in your network into consumer profiles called social graphs. These graphs provide companies with insight into behavior patterns: what you like and dislike, want and don’t want, do well and do poorly.”
Pretty much everything you and your network reveal may be compiled, including status updates, “tweets,” joining online clubs, linking a Web site or posting a comment on a blog or news Web site.
Joel Jewitt, a Rapleaf vice-president, told CreditCards.com that he sees a trend away from the traditional use of general demographic data — age, gender, address — to the use of specific data culled from the Internet.
CONSERVATIVE CONNECTIONS
Rapleaf’s founder and CEO is Auren Hoffman, a prolific Silicon Valley entrepreneur who in 2001 co-founded Lead21, a conservative business advocacy group with links to the Republican Party, particularly to Arnold Schwarzenegger’s administration in California. He writes an occasional column for the Huffington Post.
Hoffman gave a clear indication of how he views the value of social media to banks in a Tweet last fall: “If you don’t know what your customers are doing online, then you don’t know your customers.”
One of Rapleaf’s initial bankrollers was John Thiel, the founder of PayPal and an investor in Facebook. Thiel was also involved in conservatives’ efforts to fight the influence of community organizing group ACORN. He reportedly donated money to John O’Keefe, the videographer who taped ACORN workers offering advice on how to operate a human smuggling and prostitution ring. (In a lawsuit filed against O’Keefe, an ACORN worker has accused the filmmaker of entrapment.)
BUT DOES IT WORK?
Not everyone in the business community is jumping on the social-media bandwagon. Aside from privacy concerns, some bankers see Facebook, Twitter and the like as irrelevant to lending decisions.
“It’s difficult to make a judgment about an individual’s credit based on the people around them,” Gregory Meyer, community relations manager for California’s Meriwest Credit Union, told CreditCards.com. Social media “is a great way to keep up with what my 10-year-old nephew is up to, but it doesn’t have a place in the credit process.”
Consumer advocates are more vocal in their opposition.
“It’s rotten,” says Linda Sherry of Consumer Action. “It’s really not something they should be doing. They may be gaining information from people who are naive and [don't understand] how their profiles are set. It verges on privacy violation.”
Privacy advocates have long been warning of the dangers of leaving online information exposed. They suggest a number of steps to minimize exposure, including changing your privacy settings so that only people known to you can access your data, and eliminating online friendships that could reflect poorly on you.
http://rawstory.com/2010/01/banks-tracking-borrowers-facebook-twitter-report/
Rapleaf is a Web 2.0 start-up company based in San Francisco, California founded by Auren Hoffman and Manish Shah. Today, Rapleaf's database of consumer information helps businesses segment customers, understand consumer penetration across social media[2], and investigate fraud[3].
Investors
Rapleaf was initially self-funded by Hoffman and Shah[4]. Peter Thiel of The Founders Fund led a seed round of $1.0 million[5]. Other angel investors[6] in the round include Eric Di Benedetto, Aydin Senkut, Jeff Clavier, and Ron Conway, all with a background of venture capital-backed technology companies.[5]
History, products and services
Hoffman and Shah met at UC Berkeley's Center for Entrepreneurship & Technology[7] in spring of 2004. The two worked on a project prior to Rapleaf from February 2005 to November 2005. They formed Rapleaf in April, 2006 though work began in November 2005.
The company's first product, Rapleaf, is a meta-reputation system that allows users to create reviews and ratings of consumer transactions, which they then contribute to multiple e commerce websites. On May 15, 2006 eBay removed a number of auction listings where the seller had included links to Rapleaf, claiming they were in violation of its terms of use. Business commentators have had mixed opinions about this move.[8].
On January 26, 2007, Rapleaf released "Upscoop," a service that allows users to search for and manage their contacts by email address across multiple social networking sites.[9]. In late August 2007, Upscoop began e-mailing entire contact lists that are provided by their users when they login.
On July 10, 2008, Rapleaf changed its interface so that it no longer allows anonymous or registered users to search by email addresses. Instead, the service only allows a registered user to view their own reputation and the websites (social and business networking) to which their own email address is registered. There was an immediate negative backlash by companies and individuals who had been using Rapleaf to both manage reputations and investigate the authenticity of people.
Today, Rapleaf is primarily a B2B firm that helps companies analyze consumer lists to plan online marketing campaigns[10], find influential customers for customer relationship management[11], and manage fraud[12].
In the cozy Facebook social network, it's easy to have a sense of privacy among friends and business acquaintances.
But sites like Rapleaf will quickly jar you awake: Everything you say or do on a social network could be fair game to sell to marketers.
Rapleaf, based in San Francisco, is building a business on that premise. The privately held start-up, whose investors include Facebook-backer and PayPal co-founder Peter Thiel, runs two consumer Web sites: Rapleaf.com, a people search engine that lets you retrieve the name, age and social-network affiliations of anyone, as long as you have his or her e-mail address; and Upscoop.com, a similar site to discover, en masse, which social networks to which the people in your contact list belong. To use Upscoop, you must first give the site the username and password of your e-mail account at Gmail, Hotmail, Yahoo or AOL.
By collecting these e-mail addresses, Rapleaf has already amassed a database of 50 million profiles, which might include a person's age, birth date, physical address, alma mater, friends, favorite books and music, political affiliations, as well as how long that person has been online, which social networks he frequents, and what applications he's downloaded.
All of this information could come in handy for Rapleaf's third business, TrustFuse, which sells data (but not e-mail addresses) to marketers so they can better target customers, according to TrustFuse's Web site. As of Friday afternoon, the sites of Rapleaf and Upscoop had no visible link to TrustFuse, but TrustFuse's privacy policy mentions that the two companies are wholly owned subsidiaries of TrustFuse.
According to TrustFuse's Web site, "TrustFuse has pioneered a unique e-mail address based approach to Internet data measurement. (It) provides a framework to learn about new customers, better market to these customers and...to better predict buying behavior." It continues: "We perform deep searches on people to enrich data on your users. And then we put the pieces of the puzzle together to give you the full picture."
In other words, Rapleaf sweeps up all the publicly available but sometimes hard-to-get information it can find about you on the Web, via social networks, other sites and, soon to be added, blogs. At the other end of the business, TrustFuse packages information culled from sites in a profile and sells the profile to marketers. All three companies appear to operate within the scope of their stated privacy policies, which say they do "not sell, rent or lease e-mail addresses to third parties."
And that's right. Marketers bring TrustFuse their own list of e-mail addresses to buy access to demographic, behavioral and Internet usage data on those people, according to the company's privacy policy and sales documents.
Rapleaf CEO Auren Hoffman said the company does not use e-mail addresses and profiles developed by Rapleaf and Upscoop to deliver services for TrustFuse. Rather, TrustFuse's clients, which he said include presidential candidates and Internet widget companies, will bring it a list of e-mail addresses of their clients so that TrustFuse can perform fresh Internet searches on those people. Hoffman said TrustFuse will typically help clients understand which social networks their clients use so that they can market to them there. For example, a presidential candidate might want to know if his or her supporters are on MySpace.com or Facebook so they can approach people in that environment, he said.
"They say to us, 'I already know about her, but can you tell me these one or two other facts about her,'" Hoffman said. In effect, TrustFuse is a matching service between the marketers' e-mail lists and the online behavior of the people on those lists.
That said, TrustFuse's own privacy policy leaves open the possibility of connecting Rapleaf's information to TrustFuse's marketing material. According to the policy, dated August 1, 2007, "Information captured via Rapleaf may be used to assist TrustFuse services. Additionally, information collected by TrustFuse during the course of its business may also be displayed on Rapleaf for given profiles searched by e-mail address."
Apart from the unusual TrustFuse business, Rapleaf is among a new generation of people search engines that take advantage of the troves of public data on the Net--much of which consumers happily post for public perusal on social-networking sites and personal blogs. The search engines trace a person's digital tracks across these social networks, blogs, photo collections, news and e-commerce sites, to create a composite profile. Unlike Google, which might link to the same material over pages of search results or after trying different combinations of keywords, these sites attempt to "normalize" personal data so that it's easily digested by the searcher on one page.

There doesn't appear to be anything illegal about what these companies are doing. No one's sifting through garbage cans or peeking through windows. They've merely found a clever way to aggregate the heaps of personal information that can be found on the Internet. Indeed, in an age where Web sites offer to "pretext" or steal phone records and do complicated records checks for a modest fee, what Rapleaf and sites like it are doing seems modest.
But the average social-network users might have a hard time understanding how this business might affect their life. "The business model of Rapleaf is sufficiently opaque for the average user to have no clue," said John Carosella, vice president of content control at filtering company Blue Coat Systems.
Just ask Dana Todd, a co-founder of Internet ad agency SiteLab, who was concerned about her own profile on Rapleaf, which included many social networks she didn't remember belonging to.
"It's my growing horror that everyone can see my Amazon Wish List. At least I didn't have a book like 'How to get rid of herpes' on there, but now I have to go through and seriously clean my wish list," she said.
"The sites appear to be cool, but what lurks underneath is a powerful force designed to stealthily observe and collect data about you, and develop a marketing campaign to get you to behave the way they want."
Privacy advocates, of course, have complained about aggregation of personal content like this for years. Put this information in the wrong hands--of say, a stalker--and you could have a problem. In the hands of a government, it's a means to spy; in the hands of a hacker, it's an opportunity for identify theft; and in the hands of a marketer, it's a potentially lucrative business.
That's particularly true because this coalesced data could be personally identifiable--tied to names, e-mail, physical and IP addresses and other details on the person's habits. At a time when the heat is on search engines like Google and Microsoft to regularly purge personally identifiable and search history data on users, sites like Rapleaf are amassing detailed profiles from publicly available data.
"There's no question we've entered an era where people are simultaneously living their lives online. But there's a naive quality here that these sites have set up. The sites appear to be cool, but what lurks underneath is a powerful force designed to stealthily observe and collect data about you, and develop a marketing campaign to get you to behave the way they want," said Jeff Chester, director of the Center for Digital Democracy, a Washington-based consumer advocacy group.
For this reason, the Center for Digital Democracy will ask the Federal Trade Commission at a November hearing to formally open an investigation into privacy issues at social-networking sites.
"Clearly, a (privacy) standard is necessary," Chester said.
--Jeff Chester, director, Center for Digital Democracy
Rapleaf's data businessRapleaf was founded in 2006 by two University of California at Berkeley graduates, Manish Shah and Hoffman, a longtime Silicon Valley entrepreneur. With the tagline "it is more profitable to be ethical," Rapleaf launched in May 2006 as a system that helps keep track of your reputation as you buy and sell things online.
It drew attention as a viable open reputation system that could rival eBay's closed one for making decisions like hiring a babysitter, buying goods on Craigslist or working with a job candidate. Shortly after it launched, the company raised nearly $1 million in an angel round of funding led by Thiel, former Google employee Aydin Senkut, Web 2.0 financier Jeff Clavier and well-known angel investor Ron Conway.
Rapleaf broadened its focus over time to be more efficient, Clavier said, and launched its people search engine this summer. "Reputation is used in e-commerce, but the concept of people search is actually broader. It's an aggregate profile, using your e-mail as a proxy," Clavier said. "It allows you to build it without the need for people to contribute. Here you bypass the issue: I'm just going to go on the Internet, and find information on hundreds of millions of people and aggregate that."
So how does Rapleaf make money off this? Neither Rapleaf CEO Hoffman nor Clavier would say in early discussions, but when later discussing TrustFuse, Hoffman said that the company isn't making money yet. He said that TrustFuse has only been experimenting with clients for the last couple of months and doesn't charge much for its services. "First you work out the technology, before you work on monetizing that technology," he said about Rapleaf.
Sites like Rapleaf are also trying to be social networks, urging people to become members and claim their identities across multiple networks so they can manage their reputation and privacy. In fact, Hoffman says Rapleaf is designed to help people protect their privacy.
"We're helping you manage your privacy. You might not even know there's all these things about you out there. We're learning all this stuff about you. And now you can manage all this information," Hoffman said.

He said Rapleaf has about 50 million profiles, which include people's associations with Facebook, MySpace, LinkedIn, Bebo, Classmates.com and Amazon.com's Wish Lists, among other networks. Hoffman said the company soon plans to add blog searches to its database, among other coming features.
To illustrate the power of Rapleaf, CNET News.com did a search on Hoffman. From his profile page, you'll find out he's a 33-year-old single white male originally from New York. He graduated from UC Berkeley in 1996 with a degree in industrial engineering and operations research. He has profiles on 17 different social networks, pens a blog, and is linked to 11 e-mail addresses. (Eight are kept private on Rapleaf, but that domain has been in use since March 2005.)
From these links, you can find out that he's founded and sold three companies, including enterprise software firm Bridgepath and lead-generation company GetRelevant, which Lycos bought in 2002. He's also an investor in ad firm Brightroll and is an adviser to Pacific Research Institute, a nonprofit political group. From MySpace, you'll find he's an Aries who likes "anyone who stands up to the Man." And his Amazon Wish List shows that he wants a self-inflating travel pillow and the book More Sex Is Safer Sex: The Unconventional Wisdom of Economics.
One big question about Rapleaf is how it obtains access to people's social-networking profiles, considering that sites like Facebook, MySpace and LinkedIn don't publish their members' e-mail addresses as a matter of policy. When asked, representatives from these social networks said that they do not have partnerships with Rapleaf, nor other search engines, to provide access to e-mail addresses.

Kay Luo, director of communications at LinkedIn, said it plainly: "People are exposed because they're out there on the Internet, but they're not exposed because of anything we did."
Rapleaf's Hoffman said that the company finds profiles through the e-mail search at certain sites, including MySpace, LinkedIn, Facebook and Amazon. MySpace, for example, lets visitors find a profile by e-mail address or first and last name. But for other sites, Rapleaf employs a "secret sauce," according to Hoffman. It's not always easy either. Hoffman said the company hasn't figured out how to crack into accessing members on Digg, for example, even though it would like to.
According to Upscoop's privacy policy, the company "is able to obtain and may display information on a person or e-mail from other sources that are at our discretion. This information obtained from other sources is publicly available. Information may also be extracted from private social-networking sites and online communities based on special access." Hoffman said the company has no special access, however.
Security experts say one technique used to find people on social networks could be joining the social network and then ferreting e-mail addresses by deducing naming conventions at big companies. Employees at Google, for example, have addresses with the person's first name and last initial, with @google.com. By understanding naming conventions, an automated crawler could scour a social network for profiles by trying out various combinations of names.
Ali Partovi, CEO of the social music service iLike, said he considered hiring Rapleaf/TrustFuse to figure out how many of its Web users were also on Facebook and other social networks, so iLike could cross-market to those who weren't. But he ultimately decided against using the service because it meant divulging the e-mail addresses of his own users.
"One of the reasons we decided not to work with them is because it would violate our privacy policy. Our privacy policy wouldn't allow us to give a third party access to our e-mail database," he said.
Clavier said Rapleaf is only working off what's already available. "What's interesting is that when you read about what Wink, Rapleaf and others have been doing, it's suddenly like, 'Oh my God, this is a lack of privacy.' But it's only aggregating what's out there. It used to take several Google searches to find the information--now it's a one-stop shop."

"People are exposed because they're out there on the Internet, but they're not exposed because of anything we did."
--Kay Luo, director of communications, LinkedIn