Aircraft from space.

H/T Patty Golden.  I am not sure the description is correct, but the video is pretty cool.

This is a 24 hour observation of all of the large aircraft flights in the world, condensed down
to 1:11. From space we look like a bee hive of activity. What you will see is a video showing
air traffic around the world for 24 hours, taken from a satellite. 

The yellow dots are airplanes in the sky during a 24 hour period. 

Stay with the picture. You will see the light of the day moving from the east to the west, as
the Earth spins on its axis.  Also you will see the aircraft flow of traffic leaving North America
and traveling at night to arrive in the UK in the morning Then you will see the flow changing, 
leaving the UK in the morning and flying to the American continent in daylight. 

      

Here's more good news.

I got a lot of comments about the Fed's secret bailout of European banks – which failed.  That's posted here:  http://drtom.posterous.com/this-is-pretty-screwed-up-torches-and-pitchfo

But only my friend Lee Williams made the astute observation that Paribas (France), which got $175 BILLION is the majority shareholder – read 'owner' – of First Hawaiian Bank.  Do you grasp the implications?  Let me help you. The money the FDIC is supposed to have set aside to insure your deposits at FHB was loaned to Europe and is probably invested in sovereign Greek debt.  Isn't that funny?  Hahahahahaha.

But you are safe.  You pulled your cash out of there when I warned you to.

Francisco Gonzales lit up the issue a bit more with this:
In order to understand what the Fed does, it would help to understand first who owns it. This is by no means a question with a clear answer. Here are the top 4 results of googling "who owns the Fed". The last one mentions politely that  "The Fed is a little defensive about the question of ownership."

  1. Who owns the Fed?

     

    Chart of who "owns" the Federal Reserve. Chart 1. Federal Reserve Directors: A Study of Corporate and Banking Influence. Published 1976. Chart 1 reveals the 

  2. Who Owns The Federal Reserve?

     

    8 Oct 2008 – "Some people think that the Federal Reserve Banks are United States Government institutions. They are private monopolies which prey upon 

  3. Who owns and controls the Federal Reserve

     

    The inner workings of the Federal Reserve System.

  4. FactCheck.org : Federal Reserve Bank Ownership

     

    31 Mar 2008 – Q: Who owns the Federal Reserve Bank? A: There are actually 12 different Federal Reserve Banks around the country, and they are owned by 

    And Here's more good news:

    Is this really the end?

    Unless Germany and the ECB move quickly, the single currency’s collapse is looming

    Nov 26th 2011 | from the print edition

    EVEN as the euro zone hurtles towards a crash, most people are assuming that, in the end, European leaders will do whatever it takes to save the single currency. That is because the consequences of the euro’s destruction are so catastrophic that no sensible policymaker could stand by and let it happen. A euro break-up would cause a global bust worse even than the one in 2008-09. The world’s most financially integrated region would be ripped apart by defaults, bank failures and the imposition of capital controls (see article). The euro zone could shatter into different pieces, or a large block in the north and a fragmented south. Amid the recriminations and broken treaties after the failure of the European Union’s biggest economic project, wild currency swings between those in the core and those in the periphery would almost certainly bring the single market to a shuddering halt. The survival of the EU itself would be in doubt.

    Yet the threat of a disaster does not always stop it from happening. The chances of the euro zone being smashed apart have risen alarmingly, thanks to financial panic, a rapidly weakening economic outlook and pigheaded brinkmanship. The odds of a safe landing are dwindling fast. Markets, manias and panics Investors’ growing fears of a euro break-up have fed a run from the assets of weaker economies, a stampede that even strong actions by their governments cannot seem to stop. The latest example is Spain. Despite a sweeping election victory on November 20th for the People’s Party, committed to reform and austerity, the country’s borrowing costs have surged again. The government has just had to pay a 5.1% yield on three-month paper, more than twice as much as a month ago. Yields on ten-year bonds are above 6.5%. Italy’s new technocratic government under Mario Monti has not seen any relief either: ten-year yields remain well above 6%. Belgian and French borrowing costs are rising. And this week, an auction of German government Bunds flopped. The panic engulfing Europe’s banks is no less alarming. Their access to wholesale funding markets has dried up, and the interbank market is increasingly stressed, as banks refuse to lend to each other. Firms are pulling deposits from peripheral countries’ banks. This backdoor run is forcing banks to sell assets and squeeze lending; the credit crunch could be deeper than the one Europe suffered after Lehman Brothers collapsed. Add the ever greater fiscal austerity being imposed across Europe and a collapse in business and consumer confidence, and there is little doubt that the euro zone will see a deep recession in 2012—with a fall in output of perhaps as much as 2%. That will lead to a vicious feedback loop in which recession widens budget deficits, swells government debts and feeds popular opposition to austerity and reform. Fear of the consequences will then drive investors even faster towards the exits. Past financial crises show that this downward spiral can be arrested only by bold policies to regain market confidence. But Europe’s policymakers seem unable or unwilling to be bold enough. The much-ballyhooed leveraging of the euro-zone rescue fund agreed on in October is going nowhere. Euro-zone leaders have become adept at talking up grand long-term plans to safeguard their currency—more intrusive fiscal supervision, new treaties to advance political integration. But they offer almost no ideas for containing today’s conflagration.

     Browse all The Economist's euro crisis covers with our interactive carousel

    Germany’s cautious chancellor, Angela Merkel, can be ruthlessly efficient in politics: witness the way she helped to pull the rug from under Silvio Berlusconi. A credit crunch is harder to manipulate. Along with leaders of other creditor countries, she refuses to acknowledge the extent of the markets’ panic (see article). The European Central Bank (ECB) rejects the idea of acting as a lender of last resort to embattled, but solvent, governments. The fear of creating moral hazard, under which the offer of help eases the pressure on debtor countries to embrace reform, is seemingly enough to stop all rescue plans in their tracks. Yet that only reinforces investors’ nervousness about all euro-zone bonds, even Germany’s, and makes an eventual collapse of the currency more likely. This cannot go on for much longer. Without a dramatic change of heart by the ECB and by European leaders, the single currency could break up within weeks. Any number of events, from the failure of a big bank to the collapse of a government to more dud bond auctions, could cause its demise. In the last week of January, Italy must refinance more than €30 billion ($40 billion) of bonds. If the markets balk, and the ECB refuses to blink, the world’s third-biggest sovereign borrower could be pushed into default. The perils of brinkmanship Can anything be done to avert disaster? The answer is still yes, but the scale of action needed is growing even as the time to act is running out. The only institution that can provide immediate relief is the ECB. As the lender of last resort, it must do more to save the banks by offering unlimited liquidity for longer duration against a broader range of collateral. Even if the ECB rejects this logic for governments—wrongly, in our view—large-scale bond-buying is surely now justified by the ECB’s own narrow interpretation of prudent central banking. That is because much looser monetary policy is necessary to stave off recession and deflation in the euro zone. If the ECB is to fulfil its mandate of price stability, it must prevent prices falling. That means cutting short-term rates and embarking on “quantitative easing” (buying government bonds) on a large scale. And since conditions are tightest in the peripheral economies, the ECB will have to buy their bonds disproportionately. Vast monetary loosening should cushion the recession and buy time. Yet reviving confidence and luring investors back into sovereign bonds now needs more than ECB support, restructuring Greece’s debt and reforming Italy and Spain—ambitious though all this is. It also means creating a debt instrument that investors can believe in. And that requires a political bargain: financial support that peripheral countries need in exchange for rule changes that Germany and others demand. This instrument must involve some joint liability for government debts. Unlimited Eurobonds have been ruled out by Mrs Merkel; they would probably fall foul of Germany’s constitutional court. But compromises exist, as suggested this week by the European Commission (see Charlemagne). One promising idea, from Germany’s Council of Economic Experts, is to mutualise all euro-zone debt above 60% of each country’s GDP, and to set aside a tranche of tax revenue to pay it off over the next 25 years. Yet Germany, still fretful about turning a currency union into a transfer union in which it forever supports the weaker members, has dismissed the idea. This attitude has to change, or the euro will break up. Fears of moral hazard mean less now that all peripheral-country governments are committed to austerity and reform. Debt mutualisation can be devised to stop short of a permanent transfer union. Mrs Merkel and the ECB cannot continue to threaten feckless economies with exclusion from the euro in one breath and reassure markets by promising the euro’s salvation with the next. Unless she chooses soon, Germany’s chancellor will find that the choice has been made for her.

Here’s more good news.

I got a lot of comments about the Fed's secret bailout of European banks – which failed.  That's posted here:  http://drtom.posterous.com/this-is-pretty-screwed-up-torches-and-pitchfo

But only my friend Lee Williams made the astute observation that Paribas (France), which got $175 BILLION is the majority shareholder – read 'owner' – of First Hawaiian Bank.  Do you grasp the implications?  Let me help you. The money the FDIC is supposed to have set aside to insure your deposits at FHB was loaned to Europe and is probably invested in sovereign Greek debt.  Isn't that funny?  Hahahahahaha.

But you are safe.  You pulled your cash out of there when I warned you to.

Francisco Gonzales lit up the issue a bit more with this:

In order to understand what the Fed does, it would help to understand first who owns it. This is by no means a question with a clear answer. Here are the top 4 results of googling “who owns the Fed”. The last one mentions politely that  “The Fed is a little defensive about the question of ownership.”

  1. Who owns the Fed?

     

    Chart of who “owns” the Federal Reserve. Chart 1. Federal Reserve Directors: A Study of Corporate and Banking Influence. Published 1976. Chart 1 reveals the 

  2. Who Owns The Federal Reserve?

     

    8 Oct 2008 – “Some people think that the Federal Reserve Banks are United States Government institutions. They are private monopolies which prey upon 

  3. Who owns and controls the Federal Reserve

     

    The inner workings of the Federal Reserve System.

  4. FactCheck.org : Federal Reserve Bank Ownership

     

    31 Mar 2008 – Q: Who owns the Federal Reserve Bank? A: There are actually 12 different Federal Reserve Banks around the country, and they are owned by 

    And Here's more good news:

    Is this really the end?

    Unless Germany and the ECB move quickly, the single currency’s collapse is looming

    Nov 26th 2011 | from the print edition

    EVEN as the euro zone hurtles towards a crash, most people are assuming that, in the end, European leaders will do whatever it takes to save the single currency. That is because the consequences of the euro’s destruction are so catastrophic that no sensible policymaker could stand by and let it happen.

    A euro break-up would cause a global bust worse even than the one in 2008-09. The world’s most financially integrated region would be ripped apart by defaults, bank failures and the imposition of capital controls (see article). The euro zone could shatter into different pieces, or a large block in the north and a fragmented south. Amid the recriminations and broken treaties after the failure of the European Union’s biggest economic project, wild currency swings between those in the core and those in the periphery would almost certainly bring the single market to a shuddering halt. The survival of the EU itself would be in doubt.

    Yet the threat of a disaster does not always stop it from happening. The chances of the euro zone being smashed apart have risen alarmingly, thanks to financial panic, a rapidly weakening economic outlook and pigheaded brinkmanship. The odds of a safe landing are dwindling fast.

    Markets, manias and panics

    Investors’ growing fears of a euro break-up have fed a run from the assets of weaker economies, a stampede that even strong actions by their governments cannot seem to stop. The latest example is Spain. Despite a sweeping election victory on November 20th for the People’s Party, committed to reform and austerity, the country’s borrowing costs have surged again. The government has just had to pay a 5.1% yield on three-month paper, more than twice as much as a month ago. Yields on ten-year bonds are above 6.5%. Italy’s new technocratic government under Mario Monti has not seen any relief either: ten-year yields remain well above 6%. Belgian and French borrowing costs are rising. And this week, an auction of German government Bunds flopped.

    The panic engulfing Europe’s banks is no less alarming. Their access to wholesale funding markets has dried up, and the interbank market is increasingly stressed, as banks refuse to lend to each other. Firms are pulling deposits from peripheral countries’ banks. This backdoor run is forcing banks to sell assets and squeeze lending; the credit crunch could be deeper than the one Europe suffered after Lehman Brothers collapsed.

    Add the ever greater fiscal austerity being imposed across Europe and a collapse in business and consumer confidence, and there is little doubt that the euro zone will see a deep recession in 2012—with a fall in output of perhaps as much as 2%. That will lead to a vicious feedback loop in which recession widens budget deficits, swells government debts and feeds popular opposition to austerity and reform. Fear of the consequences will then drive investors even faster towards the exits.

    Past financial crises show that this downward spiral can be arrested only by bold policies to regain market confidence. But Europe’s policymakers seem unable or unwilling to be bold enough. The much-ballyhooed leveraging of the euro-zone rescue fund agreed on in October is going nowhere. Euro-zone leaders have become adept at talking up grand long-term plans to safeguard their currency—more intrusive fiscal supervision, new treaties to advance political integration. But they offer almost no ideas for containing today’s conflagration.

     Browse all The Economist's euro crisis covers with our interactive carousel

    Germany’s cautious chancellor, Angela Merkel, can be ruthlessly efficient in politics: witness the way she helped to pull the rug from under Silvio Berlusconi. A credit crunch is harder to manipulate. Along with leaders of other creditor countries, she refuses to acknowledge the extent of the markets’ panic (see article). The European Central Bank (ECB) rejects the idea of acting as a lender of last resort to embattled, but solvent, governments. The fear of creating moral hazard, under which the offer of help eases the pressure on debtor countries to embrace reform, is seemingly enough to stop all rescue plans in their tracks. Yet that only reinforces investors’ nervousness about all euro-zone bonds, even Germany’s, and makes an eventual collapse of the currency more likely.

    This cannot go on for much longer. Without a dramatic change of heart by the ECB and by European leaders, the single currency could break up within weeks. Any number of events, from the failure of a big bank to the collapse of a government to more dud bond auctions, could cause its demise. In the last week of January, Italy must refinance more than €30 billion ($40 billion) of bonds. If the markets balk, and the ECB refuses to blink, the world’s third-biggest sovereign borrower could be pushed into default.

    The perils of brinkmanship

    Can anything be done to avert disaster? The answer is still yes, but the scale of action needed is growing even as the time to act is running out. The only institution that can provide immediate relief is the ECB. As the lender of last resort, it must do more to save the banks by offering unlimited liquidity for longer duration against a broader range of collateral. Even if the ECB rejects this logic for governments—wrongly, in our view—large-scale bond-buying is surely now justified by the ECB’s own narrow interpretation of prudent central banking. That is because much looser monetary policy is necessary to stave off recession and deflation in the euro zone. If the ECB is to fulfil its mandate of price stability, it must prevent prices falling. That means cutting short-term rates and embarking on “quantitative easing” (buying government bonds) on a large scale. And since conditions are tightest in the peripheral economies, the ECB will have to buy their bonds disproportionately.

    Vast monetary loosening should cushion the recession and buy time. Yet reviving confidence and luring investors back into sovereign bonds now needs more than ECB support, restructuring Greece’s debt and reforming Italy and Spain—ambitious though all this is. It also means creating a debt instrument that investors can believe in. And that requires a political bargain: financial support that peripheral countries need in exchange for rule changes that Germany and others demand.

    This instrument must involve some joint liability for government debts. Unlimited Eurobonds have been ruled out by Mrs Merkel; they would probably fall foul of Germany’s constitutional court. But compromises exist, as suggested this week by the European Commission (see Charlemagne). One promising idea, from Germany’s Council of Economic Experts, is to mutualise all euro-zone debt above 60% of each country’s GDP, and to set aside a tranche of tax revenue to pay it off over the next 25 years. Yet Germany, still fretful about turning a currency union into a transfer union in which it forever supports the weaker members, has dismissed the idea.

    This attitude has to change, or the euro will break up. Fears of moral hazard mean less now that all peripheral-country governments are committed to austerity and reform. Debt mutualisation can be devised to stop short of a permanent transfer union. Mrs Merkel and the ECB cannot continue to threaten feckless economies with exclusion from the euro in one breath and reassure markets by promising the euro’s salvation with the next. Unless she chooses soon, Germany’s chancellor will find that the choice has been made for her.

Did the ACLU get one right?

The difference is that you are confusing citizens of foreign countries with American citizens and terrorism with combat. In the civil war there were two sides, in a declared war, and each side wore distinctive uniforms and the Southern states DID renounce their US citizenship.  That's what the war was about. 

The underwear bomber was a foreign national who attempted to set his nuts on fire over international territory.  As was entirely appropriate, and as with the idiot who had 3" of some sort of pseudo-explosive taped to his shoes, the passengers aboard the aircraft immediately beat him unconscious and kicked the fire out.  In my opinion, they would have been within their rights to have beaten both of them to death and I am sure no one would have been prosecuted.  Even though the aircraft landed in the US they were not US citizens and have no protection under the Constitution – neither were they members of the military arm of a foreign country at which we are at war, so the Geneva convention wouldn't apply either.  They were religious jihadists.

  

Neither of them deserved any rights under US law.  Neither did al-Awlaki because Constitutional rights only apply in the US proper.  He didn't have any US constitutional rights in Yemen, even if he was a US citizen.  But neither did he constitute a real and present danger. He was not a combatant, and he was not in a country with which we are at war.  So an attack on the sovereign soil of Yemen should not have happened overtly.  I don't mind that the bastard got killed, but the way it was done pissed down the back of half the world.
"Al Queda" and bin Ladin and almost every despot you can name were, at one time, functionaries of the US government in our undeclared war with the USSR between 1945-6 and its collapse.  When Russia was doing exactly what we are in doing Afghanistan, we enabled and armed Al Qaeda to fight them. Our problems with Iran shouldn't exist, but we put the Shah in power and he was a tyrant.  When he was overthrown, we tossed our might behind Iraq in their war against Iran, but then we had to snuff them when they invaded Kuwait and were poised to go right on to Saudi Arabia.  The only airplanes allowed in the air on 9/11-9/12  were the ones getting the royal family of Saudi Arabia out and the ones getting the bin Ladin family out. Saudis flew internationally on a regular basis and landed at the Bush ranch in Texas – which is not an international airport.
In point of fact, this entire east/west conflict goes right back to the crusades and the Muslims who are stuck in the 7th century and can't get out. Every terrorism incident involves the following dialogue:  "Allah Akbar, Allah Akbar", (bang/boom/crash).  And that's the reason for all of the confusion – when one commingles politics with religion, there are no viable answers.  Religion is based in faith and can quickly turn to fanaticism. A democratic Republic is based upon compromise.  There is no compromise in fanaticism.  You can kill anyone you want if God tells you to – or anyone you honestly believe is speaking for Him. 
So when you begin attempting to codify acts of war which haven't happened yet, by civilians who are not in uniform, and you have no way to predict their actions, you are merely removing more freedoms, which include personal freedoms, such as the choice to pursue happiness, and you come solidly against the wall of fanaticism.  YOU may or may not believe women do not have the choice of delivering a child of incest or rape, but by imposing your religious beliefs on others, you are infringing her freedom to pursue a happy life and sentencing her to a lifetime of pain.  On the other hand, you may think having a beer at lunch and a glass of wine with dinner is fine – or eating a chunk of honey-baked ham.  But in some countries you die for that.
If we are going to have a free republic, we have to be open to EVERY citizen's freedom as long as their quest for happiness harms no one but themselves.  If the citizen leaves the protection of the country and goes to Yemen, Yemen has to deal with them.  If they act out in a manner which harms other people HERE, the rest of the citizenry is obligated to stop it.  In Texas, if you break into my house and try to kill me, I can shoot you and be done with it.  In Hawaii, I will be arrested and prosecuted for murder.  In Afganistan, I can kill my own wife and children if I feel 'dishonored' and no one will care – as long as I am only smoking hashish and not drinking alcohol. But I had better not get caught picking a pocket.
How about we stop making more and more laws – which make more and more AMERICAN CITIZENS into criminals and, instead, start enforcing the letter of the Bill of Rights and the Constitution – which, regardless of what many people believe, are designed TO work, and only work IF, they are applied equally in all situations to which they apply, and NONE of the ones to which they don't.  And in those situations, diplomacy and international treaties are supposed to prevail – not unilateral decrees by our government that they can do anything they want to anyone in the world, without recourse, simply because they decide to.  No one has the right to make plants illegal, or fish, or flowers.  That's just stupid.
American citizens on American soil are protected by the Constitution.  Foreign citizens on American soil aren't.  American citizens on foreign soil aren't.  Citizens on international flights, in international airspace are, in theory, the responsibility of the country of destination, not the nationality of the airliner or the country of departure.  Except hijacked aircraft.  But not always.  
In answer, I don't think the structured framework being suggested addresses the problem.  I think it merely gives the government more of the power they shouldn't have.  I don't believe the word 'terrorism' should be used at all, because I'm not 'terrorized', and no one can ever terrorize me.  Rather than delegating our freedoms away any further, I think the government should secure the borders and teach people to be LESS afraid and more self-reliant instead of frightening everyone into becoming cowering jello bowls who must depend on the government for everything.  They only do it so they can excuse their malfeasance with our money.  We aren't any safer than we ever were.
I also think the term 'Al Qaeda' has been overused and overblown.  We have been in Afghanistan for over ten years fighting, as the government admits, maybe 50 'Al Qaeda' operatives.  We are really fighting the Taliban, which means that we are really fighting the Muslim religion.  We cannot win that war – EVERYONE is an enemy soldier, but NO ONE is a UNIFORMED enemy soldier.  We end up shooting up a lot of weddings, our own guys, and, last week, 26 Pakistani soldiers.  Just before elections, we always get a report the we 'got' the #3 Al Qaeda guy to justify that nonsense.  We have 'got more #3 guys than the entire al Qaeda complement. 
Further, EVERY ONE of these attacks has come after warnings.  Several flight school operators warned the FBI that foreign nationals who weren't pilots were learning to fly big jets – but not learning to take off or land.  The FBI agents in the field duly reported that and were duly ignored.  So now we have the TSA, bless their hearts.  
I am not suggesting that constitutional rights should apply where they shouldn't.  The underwear bomber shouldn't have had any rights at all.  Neither should illegal aliens.  But if no one cares for two or three generations, until they have learned the language and become productive members of society, it's too late to suddenly decide that they must all be arrested and deported because OUR government ALLOWED and FACILITATED thousands of firearms to be illegally exported to Mexico – and, of course, tried to blame American firearms dealers.
OUR government is the 900 pound terrorist in the room.  Not the students at UC Davis. Not Mitt Romney's lawn-care professionals. Not some illiterate person in a dusty village in Afghanistan.  This bill is inherently illegal and ignores the sovereignty of every country in the world.  It says, in effect, that we are the only sovereign nation and everyone else exists at our pleasure and by our whim.  I wouldn't like it structured at all, because the perspective is wrong. We cannot rule the world by decree and by the threat of our own terrorism – which is what this bill is.
We had to stay in Iraq 'until we win.  We aren't gonna cut and run".  Now we are leaving.  Did we win?  What did we win?  Why were we even there?  We didn't beat terrorism.  A terrorist and 'enemy combatant' to one side is a member of the French Resistance to another side.  The easiest way to tell is by seeing who invaded whom. Al Qaeda were 'resistance fighters' when they were fighting Russians. When WE invaded, they became terrorists and enemy combatants.
I don't think that's your main concern, though.  I think that in about ten hours the economy of the world is going to start crumbling and I don't think you are ready for it.
Actually, Anwar al-Awlaki is what this is all about.
US. citizen, targeted and killed in foreign land by US forces.
The ACLU is appalled, while I applaud. So do you.
This bill is supposed to make similar actions in future , even more systematically legal within an appropriate structured framework.
How would you like to structure such a legal framework?
This bill is supposed to make similar actions in future , even more systematically legal within an appropriate structured framework.
How would you like to structure such a legal framework?
Related: should a foreign AlQaeda underware bomber have been Marandized and allowed to lawyer up within 45min of capture in USA? I think not. How would you like to see the laws on that structured?
Geneva Convention only applies to uniformed soldiers in the service of an identified  nation, not to this case.
What if he was a US citizen, clearly identified as AlQaeda, and interrogation needed to detect other plotters, possibly foreigners , possible other pending attacks? I think there should be some mechanism to do so as in essence he has surrenders his citizenship by acts of war against his own country. Should Confederation soldiers & supporters been given full usual civilian criminal rights during the civil war?
How would you like the legal structure for that handeled?
I maintain the full Bill of Rights and Constitutional rights should not apply equally in those situations. There should be other clearly defined and reasonable ways to do so.