Monday, 22 June 2015

Jesus is a MYTH

'Jesus is a MYTH': Christ stories appeared decades after his 'death' - and he was probably many people rather than just one, atheist writer claims

  • Atheist writer David Fitzgerald claims there is no evidence Jesus existed

  • The San Francisco based author instead says Jesus was a literary allegory created by combining old Jewish stories and rituals along with rival cults
  • He insists it is time to stop believing in Jesus Christ as a historical figure

Jesus Christ was not a real person and is probably the result of a combination of stories about several different individuals, according to a writer and leading atheist activist.

David Fitzgerald, a San Francisco based author, believes he has compiled compelling evidence that proves Jesus did not exist.

He claims there are no contemporary mentions of Jesus in historical accounts from the time when he was supposed to have lived, yet other Jewish sect leaders from the time do appear.
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Mystery: This painting depicts Jesus Christ as single person but writer David Fitzgerald believes he was a literary invention that combined the stories from several cults and figures in Judea during the first century

Mystery: This painting depicts Jesus Christ as single person but writer David Fitzgerald believes he was a literary invention that combined the stories from several cults and figures in Judea during the first century

He also points to discrepancies in the early gospels of Mark, Matthew and Luke, claiming these were written decades after the supposed time of Jesus.

Instead he insists the disciples of Jesus were also probably not real and their names only later attached to the gospels to lend them credence.


Historical researcher Michael Paulkovich has claimed that Jesus of Nazareth did not exist after being unable to find any verifiable mention of Christ in historical texts by 126 writers during the ‘time of Jesus’ from the first to third centuries.
He claims that he is a fictional character invented by followers of Christianity to create a figure to worship.

He says this is surprising despite his ‘global miracles and alleged worldwide fame.’ 

The 126 texts he studied were all written in the period during or soon after the supposed existence of Jesus, when Paulkovich says they would surely have heard of someone as famous as Jesus - but none mention him.

'When I consider those 126 writers, all of whom should have heard of Jesus but did not - and Paul and Marcion and Athenagoras and Matthew with a tetralogy of opposing Christs, the silence from Qumram and Nazareth and Bethlehem, conflicting Bible stories, and so many other mysteries and omissions - I must conclude that Christ is a mythical character,’ he writes. 

‘"Jesus of Nazareth" was nothing more than urban (or desert) legend, likely an agglomeration of several evangelic and deluded rabbis who might have existed.’ 

In a new book due to be published later this year, he will argue that the figure of Jesus was actually a combination of pagan rituals and stories about other people.

Speaking to MailOnline, he said: 'There is a paradox that Jesus did all these amazing things and taught all these amazing things yet no one heard of him outside his immediate cult for nearly 100 years.

'Or it means he didn't do all these things at all.

'The first gospel of Christianity appears to have been a literary allegory that were written decades after the time they portray.

'I believe that Christianity started as one of the many mystery faiths that appeared at the time where old Gods and old traditions were rebooted.

'Christianity appears to have been a Jewish mystery faith.

'By the time of Paul there appears to have been plenty of different "Lord's suppers" as he complains about the existence of other gospels and messiahs.

'It appears that early Christianity managed to take the stories from these other faiths and incorporate them into the story of Jesus.'

Mr Fitzgerald, whose first book 'Nailed: Ten Christian Myths that Show Jesus Never Existed at All' was published in 2010, believes it is no longer reasonable to assume there has to be a single historic figure who began Christianity.

Instead he says early Christians drew upon the beliefs and rituals of other cults and faiths around in the first century.

He argues that John the Baptist's cult is one such example and had initially been a competitor to the cult of Jesus before being incorporated into the Christian story.
Mr Fitzgerald says there are inconsistencies in the Gospels of the Christian bible (pictured above) that suggest Jesus Christ was a literary allegory and these accounts were written decades after his supposed life
Mr Fitzgerald says there are inconsistencies in the Gospels of the Christian bible (pictured above) that suggest Jesus Christ was a literary allegory and these accounts were written decades after his supposed life
The statue of Christ the Redeemer (above) in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, is one of many depictions of Jesus but Mr Fitzgerald says that many of the early depictions were unable to agree on his appearance

The statue of Christ the Redeemer (above) in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, is one of many depictions of Jesus but Mr Fitzgerald says that many of the early depictions were unable to agree on his appearance

Mr Fitzgerald said: 'There is nothing implausible to think that Jesus was a real person, but I just don't think that he can have been a single person if he existed at all.

'We also have no mention of Jesus in other historical texts from the time. There were certainly people writing about Judea at the time like Philo of Alexandria.

'During this period there were many other messiahs and wannabe messiahs who did far less exciting things than Jesus, but all of them managed something Jesus did not - to make a dent on the historical record.

'Two billion people believe all these miracles happened yet there is no evidence they did.'

The earliest mention of Jesus yet to be discovered is a limestone ossuary on which the words 'James, son of Joseph, brother of Jesus' is inscribed.

The box, which has been dated to 64AD - several decades after the crucifixion - was seized by the Israeli Antiquities Authority and its owner arrested for forgery in 2003.

Although he was later cleared in 2012, doubts about the authenticity of the inscription remain.

Others have said there could have been several people named James, whose father was called Joseph and had a brother called Jesus living in Jerusalem at the time.
The James Ossuary (above) is thought by some to be the first mention of Jesus in an inscription on its side

The James Ossuary (above) is thought by some to be the first mention of Jesus in an inscription on its side

There are three mentions of Jesus in non-Christian sources which have been used to research the existence of a 'real' Jesus.

A Jesus is mentioned in Josephus' Antiquities of the Jews, which was written around 94 AD.


Rather than being born in a stable to a carpenter father, Jesus was actually the son of a successful, middle-class and highly intellectual architect.

This claim comes from biblical scholar Dr Adam Bradford, who also says that between the ages of 12 and 30 - the so-called 'missing years' of Jesus' life, when little is known about him - he was studying at religious schools and became the highest-ranking rabbi in Judea.

The radical revision of Christian history would suggest that, in preaching the spurning of worldly possessions for an austere life, Jesus may have been speaking from experience.

Dr Bradford has analysed the Bible's original Greek and Hebrew scriptures to try to establish the truth about Christ's background.

He says a mistranslation of the Greek word 'tekton' to describe the profession of Joseph, Jesus's father, is one of many mistakes that have led to a fundamental misunderstanding of Christ's character.

Dr Bradford claims that while 'tekton' is usually said to mean carpenter, it more accurately means master builder or architect. As an architect, Joseph would have had a higher social status that enabled him to better educate his son. 

Roman historian Tacitus later mentions Christ and his execution with Pontius Pilate in his Annals, thought to be written around 116AD.

Both mentions were a considerable time after his alleged execution.

Mr Fritzgerald also takes issue with many of the stories about the Crucifixion that stem from the first Gospels of Mark, Matthew and Luke.

He said: 'There are many examples of inconsistencies in the gospels that suggest they were written by people who did not live in Judea at the time they are set.

'Mark makes many mistakes about life and geography during the first century in Judea.

'If Jesus really had been arrested on the eve of Passover, they would probably have just put him in jail and tried him after the weekend.

'The trial itself violates the rules of Jewish law - why was he not stoned?

'What we know about Pontius Pilate also suggests he was someone who would not do what the Jews asked him and would often do what they asked him not to.

'Instead Mark portrays him as being persuaded by the Jewish leaders to execute him.'

Mr Fitzgerald argues that many of these stories were in fact incorporated into the story of Christ as literary devices rather than as a historical account.

He said: 'There is also no evidence for the tradition that sees Barabbas - an anti-Roman rebel and murderer - being released while Jesus, an innocent, is condemned to death.

'What this actually seems to be is Mark using the story as an allegory for the Yom Kippur scapegoat ritual where one goat is released into the wilderness and the other is sacrificed for God.'

Mr Fitzgerald hopes to have his new book 'Jesus: Mything in Action' out later this year.

He added: 'It still puzzles me that as soon as anyone tries to pin down who Jesus is we get 50 different Jesus's emerging. There is no consensus.'

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Tuesday, 16 June 2015

How Rajiv protected Quattrocchi

Bofors 'Deep Throat' reveals all: How Rajiv protected Quattrocchi

by FP Staff Apr 24, 2012 14:34 IST
Bofors 'Deep Throat' reveals all: How Rajiv protected Quattrocchi
In April 1987, a secret Swedish source leaked nearly 350 documents to Indian journalist Chitra Subramaniam-Duella. The resulting media expose – based on minutes of meetings, private notes, bank instructions, contracts, and a diary – became the biggest political scandal in modern Indian history, bringing down the Rajiv Gandhi government.

On its 25th anniversary, the Swedish Deep Throat has revealed himself to the Indian media blog,
The, in an explosive interview with none other than Subramaniam-Duella.

He is Sten Lindstrom, the former head of Swedish police, who led the investigation into the
Bofors-India gun deal. [Read the interview here]

So what does he have to say?

For one, Rajiv Gandhi did not personally take a bribe but allowed a massive cover-up aimed to protecting Ottavio Quattrocchi:

There was no evidence that he (Rajiv Gandhi) had received any bribe. But he watched the massive cover-up in India and Sweden and did nothing. Many Indian institutions were tarred, innocent people were punished while the guilty got away. The evidence against Ottavio Quattrocchi was conclusive. Through a front company called A.E. Services, bribes paid by Bofors landed in Quattrocchi's account which he subsequently cleaned out because India said there was no evidence linking him to the Bofors deal. Nobody in Sweden or Switzerland was allowed to interrogate him.

And in the pecking order of protection, Quattrocchi merited greater protection than even Rajiv Gandhi's relative Arun Nehru: "He [Managing Director of Bofors Martin Ardbo] had written in his notes that the identity of N (Nehru) becoming public was a minor concern but at no cost could the identity of Q (Quattrocchi) be revealed because of his closeness to R (Rajiv Gandhi). "

The Quattrocchi-Gandhi link is also up-front and centre: "[Ardbo] had also mentioned a meeting between an A.E. Services official and a Gandhi trustee lawyer in Geneva. This was a political payment. These payments are made when the deal has to be inked and all the numbers are on the table." A.E. Services was a front company used to facilitate the transfer of money from Bofors to Quattrocchi.

So determined was the Indian government to cover up the scandal that when Bofors officials arrived in India with a list of names, "nobody of any consequence received them." And yet even the VP Singh administration, which was voted to power in late 1989 on an anti-corruption platform, does not come out looking any better. According to Lindstrom, only one team of Indian investigators met with the Swedish team even after VP Singh took power, and their primary aim was to force him to link the Bachchans to the kickbacks. When he refused to do so, they planted a story in a leading Swedish newspaper instead – for which the paper was successfully sued by the Bachchans.

In fact, Rajiv's fall from power did little to improve the efforts of Indian investigative agencies:

Whenever the public prosecutor Ekblom and I heard of any Indian visits to Stockholm, we would speak to the media expressing our desire to meet them. Can you imagine a situation where no one from India met the real investigators of the gun deal? That was when we saw the extent to which everyone was compromised. Many politicians who had come to my office claiming they would move heaven and earth to get at the truth if they came to power, fell silent when they held very important positions directly linked to the deal.

Lindstrom's lesson in Indian politics rings truer than ever 25 years later.

Read his interview in its entirety on The Hoot website.

The Bofors story, 25 years after

“I knew what I was doing when I leaked the documents to you. I could not count on my government or Bofors or the government of India to get to the bottom of this.” STEN LINDSTROM explains why he chose to turn whistleblower to CHITRA SUBRAMANIAM-DUELLA

Posted Tuesday, Apr 24 11:19:37, 2012

April 2012 marks the 25 anniversary of the Bofors-India media revelations, which began on April 16, 1987 with revelations on Swedish state radio. The Hoot presents an interview with the man who decided to leak over 350-documents to former Indian journalist Chitra Subramaniam-Duella, then with The Hindu and later with The Indian Express and The Statesman. The documents included payment instructions to banks, open and secret contracts, hand written notes, minutes of meetings and an explosive diary. They led to the electoral defeat of an Indian prime minister and blew gaping holes into a Swedish prime minister’s record as a champion of peace and disarmament. Above all, they formed the basis for the first ever transfer of secret bank documents from Switzerland to India.

Sten Lindstrom is the former head of Swedish police who led the investigations into the Bofors-India gun deal. In an interview to Subramaniam-Duella, he reveals himself as the Swedish Deep Throat and explains why he chose to turn whistleblower.

Q - Why did you decide to identify yourself now?

A – Twenty five years is a good land-mark. We have had some time for reflection. Now it is time to speak again. Corruption levels in the world are increasing. There is new business around corruption with companies selling products that measure corruption instead of questioning why it is there in the first place. In a world of shrinking resources and ruthless ambition, we have to ensure that survival instincts that brought us out of the caves do not push us back in there because of a few greedy people. I hope I can contribute to the global struggle against corruption by sharing what I know.

Q – Tell us something about yourself.

A – Like many Swedes of my generation, my wife Eva and I were raised in the best traditions of social-democracy. Swedes are a hard-working people. Equity and justice for all is something we hold dear and for which we have strived as a nation. We built our institutions, our political and social systems around principles that were gold standards. We led the world as much in business forums as in the social arena.

Q – Nostalgia?

A – No, I base myself on hard evidence that is even more relevant today than it was 25 years ago. We are still world leaders in many fields, but somewhere our guiding principles have fallen by the wayside. No one is against successful businesses and it can be done.

Here in Sweden we have the Wallenbergs, in India you have the TATA group. These are global companies and institutions. Their business ethics and corporate social responsibility work is not a slide on a power-point. It is generations of hard work. Bofors was a good company. Their products were good. Unfortunately in the race to expand business, they resorted to illegal shipments, bribery and corruption. They claimed a tax-deduction for the money they had to pay as bribes.

In my long career as a police officer I have seen many things. What was shocking in the whole Bofors-India saga was the scale of political involvement in Sweden breaking all rules including those we set for ourselves.

Bofors was a wake-up call for most Swedes who thought corruption happens only far away in Africa, South America and Asia.

There was disbelief and hurt when they found that some of their top politicians, bureaucrats and businessmen were no better than others.

The $1.3 billion deal with India for the sale of 410 field howitzers, and a supply contract almost twice that amount was the biggest arms deal ever in Sweden.

Money marked for development projects was diverted to secure this contract at any cost. Rules were flouted, institutions were bypassed and honest Swedish officials and politicians were kept in the dark.

Our former Prime Minister Olof Palme was talking peace, disarmament and sustainable development globally, while we were selling arms illegally, including to countries that were on our banned list. My office, the office of Hans Ekblom, the public prosecutor in Stockholm, our National Audit Bureau – everything was ignored. So was the Swedish tax-payer.

The Managing Director of Bofors Martin Ardbo had worked very hard for this deal. He brought over 900 jobs to Karlskoga where Bofors is headquartered for atleast a decade. When the stories started appearing Ardbo was a shaken man. He knew that I knew that he had made a political payment even more secretly than the rest to close this deal. He told me he didn’t have a choice.

Q – How did the India angle in Bofors crop-up?

A – It was an accident. We were conducting several search and seize operations in the premises of Bofors and their executives. I have some experience in this area, so I asked my team to take everything they could find. In the pile were one set of documents to Swiss banks with instructions that the name of the recipient should be blocked out. An accountant doing his job asked why anonymity was necessary since the payments were legal. Bofors was unable to explain and then we found more and more documents leading to India.

Q – Looking back, what would you say are some of the lessons learnt?

A – There are several, but I could mention a few. The role of the whistle-blower is a part of democracy. When all official channels are clogged, you have to take a decision. We have a culture here that it is okay to blow the whistle. I have met other whistle blowers. I knew what I was doing when I leaked the documents to you. I could not count on my government or Bofors or the government of India to get to the bottom of this. My only option was to leak the documents to someone we could trust.

There needs to be a free and fair discussion in the media about itself. The media is the watchdog of our society – but who is watching the media? Most whistle blowers around the world leak information to the media because they feel they owe it to their country, their job or the position they are elected to.

Genuine whistle-blowers also expect the media to be responsible and according to me this means that the media has to understand the motives of whistle-blowers. Not everyone is driven by the same motive. This is where investigative journalism comes in.

Every role has its limits. I cannot become a journalist, a journalist cannot become a judge and a judge cannot become a politician.

Who controls the media, what are their interests? What happens if a reporter is also part of the management? Do journalistic ethics compete with business and political interests of the media organisation? Can an ombudsman be the answer? If not, let us all work together globally to find a solution we all respect and understand.

There is also a lot of debate in the world about the role of middlemen in arms deals. Some say they should not exist at all, others say they have a role.

I believe they have a role insofar as marketing a product is concerned and they should be remunerated accordingly in a transparent way so that the cost to the buyer is not circulated as kickbacks.

Where it becomes illegal and dangerous is when the ambit of their work includes paying politicians and bureaucrats and in some cases journalists to push their product. Once you are in their clutches, it is very difficult to extricate yourself.

Q – What is your view on Wikileaks?

A – All leaks have a motive and they play a role. Wikileaks went up to a point and it is welcome. I have not seen many instances of journalists or governments taking the leaks further to the next level. It is not enough for journalists to ask questions. In their privileged positions as watchdogs, they have to take the leaks further without fear or favour.

Q – With time and distance, how do you view your leaks?

A – I believe I did the best I could. I watched you work for almost one year before I took my decision to leak the Bofors-India documents to you. You were one of many journalists from India and Sweden as well as many politicians from India who visited me during this period. I was lectured to and told how to do my job. Many mentioned Rajiv Gandhi’s involvement and that the guns were duds hoping I would react. I am used to these tricks. I told everyone the guns were excellent. The problem was in the procurement process.

People trust people. Trust is built over time. The one and only visit by your former editor N. Ram of TheHindu to my office in whose presence I handed over the documents is a detail. I would have leaked the documents to you even if you had worked for any other newspaper.

The Hindu’s role in all this was that of a medium of communication. I met them because you insisted. I was disappointed. They published the documents as and when they wanted without any respect for the risks other people were taking to get the facts out.

The most explosive documents that involved the political payments were Ardbo’s notes and diary. TheHindu published them several months after they had them. In the meantime there was a serious difficulty. I got a message that my name was circulating in Delhi’s political circles as the whistleblower. This caused a lot of stress and difficulty for me. You will recall the month you were not allowed to call me while we investigated who leaked my name as the whistle-blower in India. There were consequences for me and my family. TheHindu seemed unconcerned.

Q – Any regrets?

A – No. I took an informed decision to give you the documents. But I will say this much - when newspapers think they are more important than the story, journalism suffers. When editors cross their limits, it can be dangerous.

Q - Tell us something about those days, people’s reactions, your difficulties.

A - People in Sweden were shell-shocked. Bo G Andersson of the Dagens Nyhetter (DN), Burje Remdahl and Jan Mosander of the Swedish Radio are investigative journalists of repute. They were exposing illegal sales of arms to eastern Europe, the middle-east, even Vietnam through Australia. There was total disbelief in Karlskoga. The Indian deal was the straw that broke the camel’s back because it showed that corruption had reached right to the top in Sweden and in India. They were very brazen about it. There was no evidence of any bribe being paid to Palme, but he and some of his ministers knew exactly what was going on.

Q- Quarter century later, any reflections on why Rajiv Gandhi’s name came up?

A– There was no evidence that he had received any bribe. But he watched the massive cover-up in India and Sweden and did nothing. Many Indian institutions were tarred, innocent people were punished while the guilty got away. The evidence against Ottavio Quattrrocchi was conclusive. Through a front company called A.E. Services, bribes paid by Bofors landed in Quattrocchi’s account which he subsequently cleaned out because India said there was no evidence linking him to the Bofors deal. Nobody in Sweden or Switzerland was allowed to interrogate him.

Ardbo was terrified about this fact becoming public. He had hidden it even from his own marketing director Hans Ekblom who said marketing middlemen had a role, but not political payments. Ardbo was also concerned about the role of Arun Nehru who had told Bofors in 1985 that his name and Rajiv Gandhi’s name should not appear anywhere. As the stories began to appear, Ardbo knew what I knew. He had written in his notes that the identity of N (Nehru) becoming public was a minor concern but at no cost could the identity of Q (Quattrocchi) be revealed because of his closeness to R (Rajiv Gandhi). He had also mentioned a meeting between an A.E. Services official and a Gandhi trustee lawyer in Geneva. This was a political payment. These payments are made when the deal has to be inked and all the numbers are on the table. I spent long-hours interrogating Ardbo. He told me Nehru was theeminence grise but not much more. He said often that he would take the truth with him to his grave. I met him a little while before he passed away.

Under pressure from Swedish and Indian media and with the threat of a cancellation of the contract hanging over them, Bofors sent its top executives to India with the one-point task of giving out the names. Nobody of any consequence received them.

Q– What was your experience with the Indian investigators?

A – The only team I met in early 1990 damaged the seriousness of my work and the media investigation. I met them on a courtesy call. They were in the process of filing a letter-rogatory (LR) in Switzerland. Without an official request from Switzerland, Sweden could not intervene. They gave me a list of names to pursue including the name of Amitabh Bachchan. They also told me they did not trust you entirely because you had refused to link the Bachchans to the kickbacks. During that trip to Sweden, the Indian investigators planted the Bachchan angle on DN. The Bachchan’s took them to court in the UK and won. DN had to apologise and they said the story had come from Indian investigators. I was disappointed with the role of many senior journalists and politicians during that period. They muddied the waters.

After the LR was lodged in Switzerland, I was waiting for the official track with India and Switzerland to begin. It never did. Whenever the public prosecutor Ekblom and I heard of any Indian visits to Stockholm, we would speak to the media expressing our desire to meet them. Can you imagine a situation where no one from India met the real investigators of the gun deal? That was when we saw the extent to which everyone was compromised. Many politicians who had come to my office claiming they would move heaven and earth to get at the truth if they came to power, fell silent when they held very important positions directly linked to the deal.

Q – Any final thoughts?

A – There cannot be final thoughts on something like this. False closures of corruption bleed the system. Every day has to matter. When something like the scale and violence of Bofors happens, you begin to question your own faith as a professional and a human being. When you start losing faith, you begin to lose hope. When hope is lost, everything is lost. We cannot afford to let that happen. Maybe we will get nowhere, but silence cannot be the answer. 

Sunday, 7 June 2015

Maggi banned but what about oil, eggs, vegetables, pulses

Maggi banned but what about oil, eggs, vegetables, pulses

Why did Maggi hit the headlines? Maggi’s case -- given its popularity -- is playing out in a blaze of publicity, as more states ban the noodles and has now been withdrawn from the Indian market by its manufacturer Nestle India
Maggi two-minute noodles is only the latest food item to be found violative of food-safety standards in India. Consider this: 64 percent of loose edible oils sold in Mumbai is adulterated, according to a study conducted last year by the Consumer Guidance Society of India.
The study tested 291 samples of sesame oil, coconut oil, groundnut oil, mustard oil, sunflower oil, cottonseed oil and soybean oil. This apart, arsenic above “critical limits” was found in cereals, pulses, vegetables, roots and tubers. Cadmium above similar criticality was found in cereals, fruits and curd, in a 2013 MS University of Baroda study. Both heavy metals are toxic to human beings.
Looking at other items, 28 percent of eggs sampled in Uttar Pradesh’s Bareilly, Dehradun and Izatnagar towns were contaminated with E. coli (effects are said to include diarrhoea, urinary and respiratory infections and pneumonia) and 5 percent with multi-drug resistant salmonella bacteria (Effects: diarrhoea, fever, cramps), according to this 2013 study by the Indian Veterinary Research Institute.
More than half of all duck eggs -- a local staple in Kerala -- sampled in the prosperous town of Kottayam were contaminated with salmonella, according to this 2011 study. Nearly 69 percent of 1,791 milk samples in a nationwide study did not conform to Indian standards (though they weren’t necessarily unsafe). Milk, as IndiaSpend reported earlier, is one of the most-commonly adulterated food items in India, followed by oil and eggs.
As one can see, we are surrounded by food that is contaminated, adulterated and does not meet Indian safety and packaging standards. What we have presented to you is only a sampling of recent studies on Indian foodstuff.
Why did Maggi hit the headlines? Maggi’s case -- given its popularity -- is playing out in a blaze of publicity, as more states ban the noodles and has now been withdrawn from the Indian market by its manufacturer Nestle India.
“The trust of our consumers and the safety of our products is our first priority. Unfortunately, recent developments and unfounded concerns about the product have led to an environment of confusion for the consumer, to such an extent that we have decided to withdraw the product off the shelves, despite the product being safe,” said an official statement by Nestle India.
“This is a very serious issue as it concerns the safety of consumers. Therefore, for the first time, the government has suo motu complained to the Consumer Commission to take cognisance of the matter on behalf of a class of consumers,” Consumer Affairs Minister Ram Vilas Paswan said.
The move comes after product samples analysed by Food Safety and Drug Administration (FDA), Uttar Pradesh were found three times above safe limits.
The permissible limit of lead in food items like Maggi is 2.5 parts per million (ppm), according to food safety regulations of 2011. Maggi samples analysed by the Uttar Pradesh watchdog were found to have lead concentration nearly seven times higher at 17.2 ppm, raising fears of possible lead poisoning among consumers.
The findings of the Uttar Pradesh regulator prompted several states to conduct similar tests on Maggi. Sevral states have not only banned Maggi but also other brad of instant noodles. Since health is a state subject, states have their own regulators to test if the foodstuff adhere to safety regulations.
Yet, lead isn’t only in food. And foodstuff isn’t the only item that violates safety standards. The air you breathe, the water you drink, even your walls could hold the main toxin that Maggi noodles are suspected to contain.
Lead is also present in household paint. A third of enamel paints analysed had lead concentration above 10,000 ppm -- 111 times more than the prescribed norm of 90 ppm by the Bureau of Indian Standards (BIS), according to a recent study by Toxics Link. The study tested 101 enamel paints, of which 32 paints revealed high lead concentrations. All 32 paints were made by small and medium enterprises.
Lead and other carcinogenic heavy metals have also been commonly found in everything from spinach in Delhi and Nagpur to brinjal, tomato and beans in West Bengal. Indeed, there are few vegetables that do not display lead contamination, primarily deposited from vehicular exhaust, as this 2013 study of carrot, radish, beet, cabbage and other vegetables in West Bengal revealed.
But one is also unclear about how MSG crept into Maggi. Besides lead, high levels of mono-sodium glutamate (MSG), a taste enhancer, was also found in Maggi.This is a product widely used in what is called “Indian-Chinese” food.
MSG should not be added to “pastas and noodles (only dried products)”, according to Food Safety and Standards Rules, 2011. Similarly, glutamate is one of the most common, naturally, occurring non-essential amino acid, which is found in tomatoes, parmesan cheese, potatoes, mushrooms, and other vegetables and fruits.
MSG is “generally recognised as safe” by U.S Food and Drug Administration, though it is considered harmful in India. Major complaints arising from MSG use include burning sensations of the mouth, head and neck, headaches, weakness of the arms or legs, upset stomach and hives or other allergic-type reactions with the skin.
Maggi is the most recognisable instant noodle brands in India. This could justify the nationwide uproar against revelations of adulteration. This also raises fear of several other food items being adulterated.
The bottom line also is India has not kept pace with its toxins. Detection is crucial to counter the growing problem of food adulteration, but the country has not established enough testing laboratories. 
But as IndiaSpend finds, India has only 148 food-testing laboratories. This means, each laboratory serves 88 million people. China, by contrast, has one laboratory for every 0.2 million people.
The percentage of food samples found not conforming to the regulations increased from 12.77 percdnt in 2011-12 to 18.80 percent in 2013-14 -- a six percentage-point increase over three years, as per national food watchdog data.
So, while products are violating safety norms, government agencies have also cracked down on violators. The number of convictions in food-adulteration cases increased from 764 in 2011-12 to 3,845 in 2013-14 -- a 403 percent rise. But does this data provide the full picture?

Eight Presidents Who Opposed A Central Bank (Federal Reserve)

Eight Presidents Who Opposed A Central Bank (Federal Reserve)

Eight Presidents Who Opposed A Central Bank (Federal Reserve)

Sun, Jul 25, 2010

All Articles, Counterpoint

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Since 1963, to this present day, the United States has remained under the control of the royal European banking elite through their control of the Federal Reserve who during this past nearly 60 years have all but dismantled what was once the great Nation known as the United States of America.

Through their infiltration of all levels of government, corporations and media, they have used their forces to destroy America’s “moral fiber” and reduce this once great power to but a shadow of its former self. Their once great industrial might is now gone, their schools are noted for their shockingly high dropout rates (even those who graduate know less than a child born a century ago), its once great cities are fast falling into ruin as its roads and bridges disintegrate too, and, perhaps worst of all, these once great people have nearly lost all hope.

The stage for this all occurring is being set now as the most pivotal day in the history of the United States is racing towards us all….December 21, 2012.

What I constantly argue is that without a central bank, talking about Afghanistan, Iraq, and now possibly Iran would be impossible, because the government would have to go directly to an individual to raise taxes, and would therefore be impossible after the 100th house they visited. Central banking allows for money to be produced out of “thin air” to finance our overseas empire. This is where we get inflation folks!!!

Since someone reading this thread, will question my wisdom, I wanted to talk about 6 presidents that did stop a central bank under their administration.

General George Washington (1732-1799) who is credited with being the “Father of the Nation” for winning his Nation’s war of Independence from the British. Washington gained further fame by returning to his Virginia farm in the “spirit of Cincinnatus” after ending his second term of office and not, as many had wished, becoming a king.

General Andrew Jackson (1767-1845). A hero of the War of 1812 for defeating a superior British force at the Battle of New Orleans, Jackson was put into power to defeat the establishment of a Central Bank that was supported by President John Quincy Adams (1767-1848) and was feared would split the Nation.

Of the danger facing the United States should a Central Bank be allowed to gain control of the US economy Jackson warned:

“The bold effort the present (central) bank had made to control the government … are but premonitions of the fate that await the American people should they be deluded into a perpetuation of this institution or the establishment of another like it. I am one of those who do not believe that a national debt is a national blessing, but rather a curse to a republic; inasmuch as it is calculated to raise around the administration a moneyed aristocracy dangerous to the liberties of the country.”

Directly to President Adams and the other Central Bank supporters Jackson said directly:

“Gentlemen, I have had men watching you for a long time and I am convinced that you have used the funds of the bank to speculate in the breadstuffs of the country. When you won, you divided the profits amongst you, and when you lost, you charged it to the bank. You tell me that if I take the deposits from the bank and annul its charter, I shall ruin ten thousand families. That may be true, gentlemen, but that is your sin! Should I let you go on, you will ruin fifty thousand families, and that would be my sin! You are a den of vipers and thieves.”

Adams was enraged at his and the Central Banks defeat by Jackson and refused to attend his inauguration. To his dying day Adams retained a great hatred of this president and as a Member of the United States House of Representatives (the only American President to serve in this body after leaving office.) cast the only “no” vote on a law to give medals to the US Military officers who had served in the Mexican-American War (1846-1848). Immediately after casting his vote Adams collapsed and died two days later.

General Ulysses S. Grant (1822-1885), who like Jackson before him was put into power to defeat those forces attempting to create a Central Bank said needed due to the United States massive debts incurred from their Civil War (1861-1865) and opposed by President Abraham Lincoln (1809-1865), who said:

“The government should create, issue, and circulate all the currency and credit needed to satisfy the spending power of the government and the buying power of consumers. The privilege of creating and issuing money is not only the supreme prerogative of government, but it is the government’s greatest creative opportunity. The financing of all public enterprise, and the conduct of the treasury will become matters of practical administration. Money will cease to be master and will then become servant of humanity.”

Upon President Lincoln’s assassination by those forces advocating a Central Bank he was succeeded by President Andrew Johnson (1808-1875) who, like Lincoln before him, opposed those European forces [the Rothschild's banking family alone was reported to have lost nearly $50 million in support of the Confederacy.] attempting to take control of the American economy and in further “outrages” against them forgave the Southern States of their debts, granted unconditional amnesty to all Confederate Soldiers, freed all remaining slaves in the United States, and paid back the Russian Empire for its blocking of a North American invasion by British and French forces by purchasing Alaska for $7.2 million.

For President Johnson’s continued opposing the aims of the Central Bankers he was greatly weakened by two attempts to impeach him from office [In 1926 the US Supreme Court ruled the basis for those impeachment attempts as unconstitutional.] thus necessitating the need to put General Grant in power.

Chester A. Arthur (1829-1886) who was also the first non-military member of the order to ascend to the Presidency but did so through the rules of primogeniture (right of first born) granted to him as the direct descendant of maternal grandfather and Revolutionary War leader Uriah Stone and was “established in place” to take power upon the assassination by these European bankers of President James A. Garfield (1831-1881).

President Garfield warned of the dangers to America should these Central Bankers ever gain power by stating shortly before his death in 1881, “Whoever controls the money of a nation, controls that nation and is absolute master of all industry and commerce. When you realize that the entire system is very easily controlled, one way or another, by a few powerful men at the top, you will not have to be told how periods of inflation and depression originate.”

William McKinley (1843-1901) whose membership in the order was granted under their rules of primogeniture through his grandfather and American Revolutionary War hero David McKinley, and who by his own right had distinguished himself as a hero in the Civil War.

President McKinley began his attack against the Central Bankers with his ally and Secretary of State John Sherman (1823-1900) whose connection his older brother and Civil War here General William Tecumseh Sherman (1820-1891). The legal tool used by President McKinley and Sherman against the European bankers was the law known as the “Sherman Antitrust Act” which was first brought to bear against the Rothschild supported and funded JP Morgan financial empire known as the Northern Trust who by the late 1800′s owned nearly all of America’s railroads.

Shortly after President McKinley began his attack against the Central Bankers he was assassinated (1901) allowing his Vice President Theodore “Teddy” Roosevelt (1858-1919) to take power. Upon the Rothschild backed “and paid for” President Roosevelt taking office one of Roosevelt’s first acts was to drop the United States government lawsuits against the Northern Trust and accelerate the American age known as “Manifest Destiny” which continues to this day and basically gives these Central Bankers the “power” to plunder the entire World for profit and gain above all else.

The last chance to thwart the European plan to establish a Central Bank in the United States ended on April 14, 1912 with the deliberate sinking of the RMS Titanic by British agents that killed one of the orders members named Major Archibald Willingham Butt (1865-1912) along with the American business tycoons John Jacob Astor IV, Benjamin Guggenheim and Isidor Straus who were returning to the United States from Great Britain after what they believed was a successful “negotiation” with the Rothschild’s to “leave America alone” under “threat of war”

With the last “obstacles” removed from creating a Central Bank in the United States with the sinking of the Titanic the European banking powers forced through the American legal system what is known as the Federal Reserve Act of 1913 which once enacted (and remains to this day) became the sole and complete authority over the United States economy forcing the American people into two World Wars and countless other conflicts during the past 97 years all designed with one single purpose, to create for Europe’s royal families a “New World Order” controlled by them.

General Dwight David “Ike” Eisenhower (1890-1969), who was “appalled” over his Nations defacto surrender to Nazi German forces during World War II in order to obtain the atomic bomb Hitler was ready to use against them, and the deliberate murder of his close friend General George S. Patton (1885-1945) who upon his learning that Europe’s royal “powers” had delivered the atomic bombs secrets to the Soviet Union was ready to march against them.

Both Eisenhower and Patton, Sons of the American Revolution, were especially enraged over President Harry Truman’s (1884-1972) dropping of two atomic bombs on Japan.

President John F. Kennedy (1917-1963) with the election the country’s fortunes neared victory when on June 4, 1963 President Kennedy issued Executive Order 1110 which for the first time since 1913 returned to the United States government the power to issue currency, without going through the Federal Reserve (Central Bank).

Five months later, on November 22, 1963, President Kennedy was brutally assassinated while sitting by the side of his wife in a Dallas, Texas motorcade, an event so shocking that has continually been talked about through the ages.

For as this date is more well known as the end of the ancient Mayans long count calendar (and ending of the World?), it is also the date the Federal Reserve’s 99-year old charter to control the American economy ends. And, most importantly, for it to be renewed it would require not only a majority vote in both houses [Senate and House of Representatives] of the US Congress, but also a three-quarter majority vote by every one of their 50 States’ legislative bodies.

“We the people” have less than 2 ½ years to prohibit this “private corporation” from renewing.

People Who Opposed the Central Banking Scheme

The Signers of the Constitution
The Revolution was fought for Independence from England's Central Banking System, as well as for Freedom from English Taxation. Many of the Signers lost everything, and some, their lives, in this English War of Conquest.

Those who fought and died in the War of 1812
Another English War of Conquest-
The Bank of England financed this renewed attempt to get control of our Commerce, Trade, and Money Systems. BEN FRANKLIN - THE TWO BANKING SYSTEMS From the autobiography of Ben Franklin, as reported by Gertrude Coogan in "Money Creators": ...the inability of the colonists to get the power to issue their own money permanently out of the hands of George III and the international bankers was the PRIME reason for the Revolutionary War.
Ben Franklin answering a question about the booming economy of the young colonies: "That is simple. In the colonies we issue our own money. It is called Colonial Scrip. We issue it in proper proportions to the demands of trade and industry." (Colonial Scrip had no debt or interest attached.

See Essay on Colonial Scrip.

Alexander Hamilton-(1755-1804)
Founded the first central bank in the United States.
International bankers saw that interest-free scrip would keep America free of their influence, so by 1781 banker-backed Alexander Hamilton succeeded in starting the Bank of America. After a few years of "bank money", the prosperity of "Colonial Scrip" was gone. Benjamin Franklin said, "Conditions were so reversed that the era of prosperity had ended and a depression set in to such an extent that the streets of the Colonies were filled with the unemployed!" Bank money was like our FED money. It had debt and interest attached.
By 1790 Hamilton and his bankers had created a privately owned central bank and converted the public debt (interest-free) into interest bearing bonds, payable to the bankers. When Hamilton's bank charter expired in 1811, the international bankers started the war of 1812. By 1816, another privately-owned U.S. bank was started with $35 million in assets - only $7 million of that was owned by the government. This bank lasted for 20 years. U.S. history shows that currency with debt and interest attached created a depression.
{Alexander Hamilton was killed in a duel, in 1804 by Aaron Burr, a British Sympathizer.}

Napoleon Bonaparte-(1769-1821) Emperor of France(1804-1815)
Had a free hand in Europe as long as he borrowed from the Bank of Rothschilds. When he quit borrowing he was attacked by the English. Napoleon, a sympathizer for the international bankers, turned against them in the last years of his rule. He said: "When a government is dependent upon bankers for money, they and not the leaders of the government control the situation, since the hand that gives is above the hand that takes... Money has no motherland; financiers are without patriotism and without decency; their sole object is gain."

Andrew Jackson, 7th U.S. President, 1829-1824
When the 1816 charter expired in 1836, Andrew Jackson vetoed its renewal. See Jackson's Veto Message to Congress It was then that he made two famous statements: "The Bank is trying to kill me - but I will kill it!" Later he said "If the American people only understood the rank injustice of our money and banking system - there would be a revolution before morning..."

Abraham Lincoln-(1809-1865) the 16th President of the U.S.-Assassinated while in Office.
In his First Inaugural Address, Lincoln made a point to discuss the role of Capital and Labor. Significant national issues were, at that time, in the first official speech, immediately after a Presidential Election.
Lincoln spoke on finances and government: "In his First Annual Message to Congress, December 3, 1861, Abraham Lincoln stated: "Labor is prior to, and independent of, capital. Capital is only the fruit of labor, and could never have existed, if labor had not first existed. Labor is the superior of capital, and deserves much the higher consideration. Capital has its rights, which are as worthy of protection as any other rights."
President Lincoln needed money to finance the Civil War, and the international bankers offered him loans at 24-36% interest. Lincoln balked at their demands because he didn't want to plunge the nation into such a huge debt. Lincoln approached Congress about passing a law to authorize the printing of U.S. Treasury Notes. Lincoln said "We gave the people of this Republic the greatest blessing they ever had - their own paper money to pay their debts..." Lincoln printed over 400 million "Greenbacks" (debt and interest-free) and paid the soldiers, U.S. government employees, and bought war supplies. The international bankers didn't like it and wanted Lincoln to borrow the money from them, so that the American people would owe tremendous interest on the loan. Lincoln's solution made this seem ridiculous. Shortly after Lincoln's death, the government revoked the Greenback law which ended Lincoln's debt-free, interest-free money. A new national banking act was enacted and all currency became interest-bearing, debt instruments, again.

James A. Garfield-(1831-1881) 20th President of the United States.
Assassinated in Office.
President James A. Garfield said: "Whoever controls the money in any country is absolute master of industry [legislation] and commerce".

Louis T. McFadden,-Chairman of the House Banking Committee-(1928-1935)
After two attempts on his life in 1933-1934, McFadden died "mysteriously" in 1935.

See His Comments in the Essay on Colonial Scrip.
John F. Kennedy -(1917-1963)-35th President of the United States-
Assassinated in Office.
On June 4, 1963, President Kennedy issued Executive Order 11110.

This Executive Order called for the issuance of new currency -
the United States Note. At the time, $4,292,893 of this currency was put into circulation. This new currency was to be distributed through the U.S. Treasury and not the Federal Reserve System. Furthermore, it was to be issued debt and interest-free.
Upon Kennedy's assassination, this currency was withdrawn from circulation, never to be issued again. See Kennedy Solution

Calcium Carbide - Box Of Artificially Ripened Mangoes Exploded As Food Inspector Inspects

Box Of Artificially Ripened Mangoes Exploded As Food Inspector Inspects

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The video shows how a box of mangoes, meant to be exported from the Karippur Airport in Kozhikode, Kerala, explodes after food inspectors set it on fire. The explosion is caused by small packets of calcium carbide inserted amidst the mangoes to make them ripen faster, which possess explosive properties.

What is Calcium carbide and What is it’s industrial use?

Calcium carbide (CaC2) is a chemical compound used in the manufacture of acetylene gas, generation of acetylene in carbide lamps and manufacture of chemicals for fertiliser and in steelmaking. It is also used for making toy cannons and naval flares thanks to its explosive properties.

Why Calcium Carbide is used to ripen fruits?

Calcium carbide has been banned under PFA Rules, 1955 and also under Food Safety and Standards (prohibition and Restriction on Sales) Regulations, 2011. When Calcium Carbide reacts with water it emits acetylene gas which is similar to the ethylene gas produced by plants to ripen its fruits.

What adverse effect artificially ripened fruits can cause to our health?

The trouble with fruit ripened artificially is the arsenic and phosphorous hydride created by Calcium carbide. CaC2 has cancer causing properties and could initially lead to vomiting, diarrhoea with blood and pain in the chest with other symptoms. And this is just the beginning.

What are the best practices?

To reduce the harmful effects of artificially ripened fruit, it is better to wash the fruits for many minutes so the chemical traces are reduced. Cut fruits instead of consuming them directly and get rid of the peel before you do so.