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Posts: 8,240
Reply with quote  #251 


Frank Keating Coverup of OKC bmbing

 Ex-Congressman's aide has video of explosion?

"The Fairfax County, Va., home of John Culbertson once a member of former U.S. Rep. James Traficant's scandal-plagued congressional office was raided Friday afternoon by Oklahoma City police detectives searching for evidence related to the 1995 Oklahoma City bombing."

According to this article, Culbertson may have in his possession a number of crucial videos and still photos never known to federal or state prosecutors until recently. If true, it is inconceivable that this Culbertson would conceal, at his private residence no less, important evidence no matter who it may or may not implicate.

Further into the article it states:

"In an affidavit obtained by this newspaper, Detective Easley said Mills told him the images he was shown included the Murrah building in ''pristine condition.''

"Mills then said, ''Mr. Culbertson pushed a button and a second photograph came up with a small glow at the bottom of the building. Mr. Culbertson pushed another button and another frame appeared of a ball of fire rising from the building and the building fell."

Other videos still out there?

Martin Keating (brother of Frank Keating, former company man for the FBI and Governor of Oklahoma at the time of the bombing), bragged after the bombing that he had copies of the surveillance film from the Southwest Bell building across the street from the Murrah building.

Another odd thing about Martin Keating that just can't be ignored: Brother Martin wrote a manuscript in 1991, roughly four years before the OKC bombing. Keating could not get this work published until after the bombing.

This manuscript, now a published book, is titled The Final Jihad. In this book, Keating lays out a story of terrorists based in OKC who decide to bomb a federal building. Guess what the name of the one of the key "terrorists" in the book is? Tom McVey. And for the kicker of this fictional work: The terrorists in The Final Jihad are stopped by an Oklahoma highway patrolman for a broken tail light.

How extraordinary! We have a book in manuscript form written four years before the OKC bombing whose story line involves terrorists in Oklahoma City. This part of this fictional work comes true. We have a main character in the book by the name of Tom McVey. In real life, the bomber four years later in OKC is named Tim McVeigh.

We have the terrorists in this fictional work stopped by Oklahoma state troopers for a broken tail light. In real life, our bomber, Tim McVeigh, is pulled over by an Oklahoma state trooper because of a missing license plate.

How's that for fiction being stranger than reality? In this book, written in 1991, Martin Keating also predicts the TWA downing and the World Trade Center bombing. Was this just a premonition that Mr. Keating had? The bottom line is why hasn't Martin Keating been put under the microscope regarding his own statements that he has videos that could unlock the truth?

That aside, now we are starting to touch on the real issue in the OKC bombing: What really destroyed the building? It is the key to the crime and this two part series, I hope, will encourage the American people demand a real investigation by experts, who have no ties whatsoever to the Federal government, into all the facts and evidence about OKC.

McVeigh's Second Trial

Millions and millions of words have been written about Timothy McVeigh and Terry Nichols. Most of it focuses on the "anti-government" hate mongers, Tim McVeigh, Nichols and the Ryder truck filled with drums of ammonia nitrate, which once cooked and detonated, turned into "weapons of mass destruction" that brought down the Murrah Building or it is alleged.

Several weeks before McVeigh's execution, this writer authored a 228-page document titled McVeigh's Second Trial. This meticulous statement of facts was not compiled to defend Timothy McVeigh, although every defendant is presumed to be innocent until proven guilty. That was impossible in the United States v. Timothy McVeigh trial.

The greatest majority of the American people have never been told the truth about the facts surrounding that heinous act. Both the Clinton and Bush administrations, through their minions, Janet Reno and John Ashcroft, have gone to extraordinary lengths to conceal the truth and have participated in a colossal cover up pertaining to the slaughter of 168 innocent men, women, children and babies.

I am compelled to cite some of the factual details contained in McVeigh's Second Trial because it is one of my life goals to see those who perpetrated this screaming act of murder suffer the full consequences of the law at the state level; the feds have no jurisdiction to try McVeigh or Nichols for murder; see the U.S. Constitution.

These are just a tiny fraction of issues covered in McVeigh's Second Trial:

Question: With no suspects and absolutely no leads, how is it the feds zeroed in on McVeigh within 48 hours?

Fact: Because, quite conveniently, his social security number was put out to all law enforcement as a suspect within two days of the bombing. This is how patsy's are made.

Question: Was Trooper Charlie Hanger alone when he pulled McVeigh over near Perry, Oklahoma?

According to the official trial transcripts, apparently not:

Trooper Hanger under cross by the completely incompetent McVeigh defense team:

Q: Did you drive even with the driver's side of Mr. McVeigh's vehicle?

Response by Trooper Hanger: "I actually overshot him. We passed him."

"We" passed him? Was this just a slip by Hanger because he usually rides with a partner or was there another trooper in his official car that day when the real Timothy McVeigh was pulled over? If so, why was he/she never mentioned or put on the stand?

On May 20, 1995, just a few days before the evidence (the Murrah Building) was destroyed, I drove the stretch between the crime scene (the Murrah Building) and the location where McVeigh was pulled over. It would have been impossible for him to drive this distance in the time available for the government's time line to work without exceeding a consistent speed of 80+ mph.

No one has ever stepped forward to say they observed this 1977 crummy old Mercury Marquis speeding away from OKC at high speed, all the way up the interstate to the Perry turn off. Not to mention how foolish it would have been for McVeigh to draw such attention to himself. McVeigh's car had very distinct rust markings, yet no one remembers seeing this vehicle speeding away from OKC to the Perry exit. How extraordinary.

The Carol Howe Case

This case was directly connected to the investigation of the loons who lived in Elohim City, McVeigh and the bombing. During Ms. Howe's trial, a single witness destroys the government's time line regarding Timothy McVeigh. As this witness was a victim of the bombing, it isn't likely she would want to do anything to help mass murderer Timothy McVeigh, but she did. Why on earth Stephen Jones never subpoenaed her to testify at McVeigh's trial in Denver remains a mystery to this writer.

Testimony from the official transcripts of Germaine Johnston; the full transcript testimony can be read in McVeigh's Second Trial. Certain parts have been omitted for brevity. Please be prepared when you read the transcript contained in that document because the testimony of victims and their families will rip your heart out.

Q. Did you have an encounter with someone that stood out in your mind?

Answer by Ms. Johnston: Yes, I did. When I got down here, to the Southwestern Bell property, there was a car sitting facing north, and there were two young men standing by it. And as -- approached them.

Q. Do you know about how long after the bombing that would have been?

A. My estimate would be that it was 20 or 25 minutes afterwards. I think between 9:25 and 9:35 or something like that.

Q. Okay. Now, you said that there were two young men that you saw?

A. Uh-huh, there were two men standing by the passenger side of this car. It was yellow car. It was parked in the alley, close to this building right here, facing north; and they were standing by the driver's door.

Q. Now, did you recognize the type of car?

A. It was a Mercury.

Q. How do you know that?

A. My husband and I used to drive a Mercury, about that same age and about that same color.

Q. What model, year model was your Mercury?

A. '77.

Q. What color was this Mercury?

A. It was faded yellow.

Q. Okay. Was it a four-door?

A. Yes.

Photos of McVeigh's car are at: [www.okcitytrial.com/content/current/April/exb41 2.jpg]
[www.okcitytrial.com/content/current/April/exb41 3.jpg]
[www.okcitytrial.com/content/current/April/exb41 4.jpg]

You will notice on the driver's side of the car, there is huge discoloration and rust. There is no mention of this in Mrs. Johnston's testimony above because, unfortunately, she is standing on the passenger side of the car. Did she happen to see the other side of the car before going on her way? The question was never asked, but it should have been by McVeigh's defense attorneys.

The other critical statement during Mrs. Johnston's testimony that must be considered is this:

She states that she approached this yellow '77 Mercury approximately 20-25 minutes after the bombing. That would make it somewhere between 9:25 and 9:35 am in her words. That is her testimony.

These are very, very important minutes. Why? Because Trooper Hanger stated in his testimony that "we" pulled McVeigh over at approximately 10:20 am. According to his log for that day, it says he called in the arrest at 10:22 am.

That would mean that McVeigh would have driven from the Murrah Building to the location of his arrest in 50 minutes or less. As I said earlier, unless McVeigh was flying in his clunker, which no one observed, the time line doesn't fit. Come on, with all the horror and publicity surrounding his arrest, not one single person on that highway that day at around that time came forward to report seeing McVeigh's car.

A whole lot of people saw the brown pick up with Middle Eastern looking men inside speed away from the building. However, that solid lead was quickly dropped at the altar of political correctness. How revolting.

According to the feds in McVeigh's trial, he allegedly left the Ryder truck at 9:00 am, walked quickly away and 1 hr and 20 minutes later, he was pulled over. That can be done if you drove straight as the crow flies, however, it doesn�t square with Ms. Johnston's sworn testimony.

Even if McVeigh walked straight to his get-away car, the Murrah Building was not located next to the freeway on-ramp. Precious minutes would be eaten up getting to I-35 north. Trooper Hanger says McVeigh was not speeding when he approached him.

Now, let's go back to Mrs. Johnston. She says she spoke with McVeigh and another man at roughly 9:25-9:35 am. She testified that as she approached them, they were just standing there on the driver's side. She briefly spoke with them and then moved on.

The question is how long did this McVeigh and the other unidentified man continue to stand there? Did they get in this yellow car and leave? Did the unidentified man leave then and then this McVeigh get in his car and take off? We don't know.

One thing I do know: If it was 9:25-9:35 am and McVeigh was standing around near the building, there simply is no way, without traveling at a high speed all the way, that McVeigh could have made it to marker 202-203 where Trooper Hanger stopped him at 10:20 am. Also, what happened to the second man this McVeigh was with when Ms. Johnston spoke with them? It wasn't Nichols.

McVeigh would have had to leave the minute Mrs. Johnston walked away, hurry to I- 35, which would have drawn a lot of attention, some one fleeing instead of sticking around to help, and race up I-35 to travel 75 miles in the 45 minutes left to him based on Mrs. Johnston's testimony. Could you drive 75 miles in 45 minutes? This means getting to the freeway through the massive mess and heading out at a very high speed.

The time line doesn't work. Mrs. Johnston was a victim. It's unlikely she would want to mislead anyone during her testimony to protect McVeigh. This not only establishes very reasonable doubt, it also puts us once again with two McVeigh look-alikes.

In the June 1995 issue of Soldier of Fortune Magazine is a photo of three ATF agents taken in a court room during the Waco trials. Two are identified; the agent in the middle is not. He is also a dead ringer for Timothy James McVeigh.

Link du jour



Agent feared leak of Trump tax returns could affect election
6:21 p.m Wednesday, May 24, 2017  Nation & World


Mississippi lawmaker calls for lynchings after removal of Confederate symbols


Video appears to show San Antonio police officer repeatedly striking 14-year-old girl in face during arrest
NEW YORK DAILY NEWS Wednesday, May 24, 2017, 2:32 PM


Vermont DMV Caught Using Illegal Facial Recognition Program - Vocativ
The Vermont Department of Motor Vehicles has been caught using facial recognition software — despite a state law preventing it.

Documents obtained by the American Civil Liberties Union of Vermont describe such a program, which uses software to compare the DMV’s database of names and driver’s license photos with information with state and federal law enforcement. Vermont state law, however, specifically states that “The Department of Motor Vehicles shall not implement any procedures or processes… that involve the use of biometric identifiers.”

The program, the ACLU says, invites state and federal agencies to submit photographs of persons of interest to the Vermont DMV, which it compares against its database of some 2.6 million photos and shares potential matches. Since 2012, the agency has run at least 126 such searches on behalf of local police, the State Department, FBI, and Immigrations and Customs Enforcement.


Former Mississippi prison chief sentenced to nearly 20 years

May 24, 2017 7:25 pm
JACKSON, Miss. (AP) — Christopher Epps once called himself the “tallest hog at the trough,” but he was cut down to size Wednesday when a judge sentenced Mississippi’s former corrections commissioner to nearly 20 years in prison for crimes connected to more than $1.4 million in bribes.

U.S. District Judge Henry T. Wingate handed down the sentence, rejecting prosecutors’ recommendation for a more lenient 13 years. Wingate said Epps’ decision to break into his former house to retrieve outdoor lights in October — after Epps had pleaded guilty — made him question whether the 56-year-old truly took responsibility for his crimes. He also ordered Epps to pay a $100,000 fine. Epps has already forfeited more than $1.7 million in assets.

“This is the largest graft operation that certainly I have seen, and I have seen a lot,” said Wingate, a federal judge since 1985. “He has bruised tremendously the image of the state of Mississippi.”

Epps pleaded guilty in 2015 to charges of money laundering and filing false tax returns related to bribes he extracted from contractors doing business with the prison system. The charges carried a maximum sentence of 23 years.


Illinois 16-year-old commits suicide hours after police tried to ‘scare him straight’
NEW YORK DAILY NEWS Tuesday, May 23, 2017, 1:02 PM


FBI is much more destructive than under J Edgar Hoover

Guardian: Trump Seems Primed to Return the FBI to the Hoover Era

Former FBI Director J. Edgar Hoover
Former FBI Director J. Edgar Hoover

By Editorial Board
The Guardian

The country is still reeling after the bombshell report that Donald Trump asked the former FBI director James Comey to shut down the bureau’s investigation into Michael Flynn. Did the president fire Comey to slow down the FBI Russia investigation? Did Trump obstruct justice?

These questions are getting the attention that they deserve. But the focus on Comey’s firing is obscuring the issue of who Trump will hire to replace him – and the threat that this appointment poses to Americans’ civil liberties and civil rights.

Recently, the journalist Ashley Feinberg uncovered Comey’s personal Twitter account; he had used the pseudonym “Reinhold Niebuhr”. Tellingly, the real Niebuhr was a theologian, public intellectual, and Presidential Medal of Freedom recipient targeted for FBI surveillance because of his lawful opposition to the Vietnam war.

Niebuhr wasn’t alone. The FBI has a long history of abusing its power to serve political ends. In the early 20th century, J Edgar Hoover created his Radical Alien Division to conduct dragnet surveillance of American immigrants. It surveilled Marcus Garvey to collect evidence used in his deportation to Jamaica. It wiretapped Dr Martin Luther King Jr during the civil rights era. At President Dwight Eisenhower’s direction, Hoover compiled a “list of homosexuals” to root out gay people working for the government.

Comey had serious flaws. But he understood the past misdeeds of the FBI. He kept a copy of the original order to wiretap King on his desk and required new FBI agents and analysts to visit King’s memorial on the National Mall. As Comey put it in 2015, he tried to “to ensure that we remember our mistakes and that we learn from them”.


Changing tactics, NYPD focuses on helping drug users, rather than locking them up
NEW YORK DAILY NEWS Monday, May 22, 2017, 7:00 AM


A state-run universal healthcare system? California only? It’s fantasy.

Current legislation in Sacramento is fatally flawed and foolhardy.

Why? It would be astronomically expensive, politically impossible and beyond state government’s competence.

But it’s a rallying cry for many liberal followers of Bernie Sanders. And some Democratic legislators are seriously pursuing the idea, urged on by the politically powerful California Nurses Assn.

The nurses were marching and shouting at last weekend’s Democratic Party state convention in Sacramento. Their hero is Lt. Gov. Gavin Newsom, whom the nurses have endorsed to replace the termed-out Gov. Jerry Brown in next year’s election.

They like Newsom because he installed a local universal healthcare system as San Francisco’s mayor.

The activist nurses have also endorsed state Sen. Ricardo Lara (D-Bell Gardens) for California insurance commissioner. He and Sen. Toni Atkins (D-San Diego) are sponsoring the universal healthcare legislation. It’s called “single payer” because the state would pay for all healthcare in California.

Lara is chairman of the Senate Appropriations Committee, where his bill, SB 562, is expected to be approved and sent to the Senate floor. It’s up against a June 2 deadline for Senate passage to the Assembly.

Posts: 8,240
Reply with quote  #252 

Link du jour





Miami judge rules out FOIA trial, says FBI document on 9/11 funding ...

Florida Bulldog
Secret FBI information about who funded the 9/11 attacks will remain hidden ... The FBI has since sought to discredit that report, saying the unnamed agent who ...

Miami U.S. District Judge Cecilia Altonaga. Photo: Federal Bar Association, South Florida Chapter

Secret FBI information about who funded the 9/11 attacks will remain hidden indefinitely after a Miami federal judge reversed herself last week and decided that the FBI was not improperly withholding it from the public.

At the same time, Judge Cecilia Altonaga ruled out holding a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) trial to evaluate the need for such continued secrecy nearly 16 years after the 9/11 attacks. A trial would likely have included testimony from government witnesses in support of continued secrecy as well as others like Bob Graham, the former Florida senator who co-chaired Congress’s Joint Inquiry into 9/11 and believes the FBI documents should be made public.

“The court sees no need for further facts to be elicited at trial,” Altonaga wrote in her seven-page order granting the FBI’s request to keep secret large portions of an FBI slide show titled “Overview of the 9/11 Investigation.” The FBI had argued the information was exempt from public disclosure because it “would disclose techniques and procedures for law enforcement investigations or prosecutions.”

Altonaga’s decision reversed her May 16 order that the 60-page document – referred to in court papers as “Document 22” – that was shown to the 9/11 Review Commission on April 25, 2014, should be largely opened for public inspection. The commission is also known as the Meese Commission, after its most prominent member, Reagan-era attorney general Ed Meese.

Florida Bulldog attorney Thomas Julin said the judge “should have ordered the FBI to stand trial for its decision to withhold information about its investigation.” He added that an appeal is being considered.

“The order requires the FBI to release information that was illegally redacted. That information will shed light on 9/11, but we did not get everything we wanted,” said Julin. “Much of what we did get confirmed the Bulldog’s reporting about Sarasota has been 100 percent correct and the FBI lied to the public about that. This case may be headed to the Supreme Court.”

Graham disappointed by ruling

Sen. Graham was disappointed by the judge’s ruling. He said the FBI’s 9/11 overview likely contains “important information relating to the funding of 9/11 and presumably the role of Saudi Arabia in doing so. Knowledge of these facts could change public opinion and governmental actions as to the liability of the Saudis as allies and the wisdom of us supplying them with hundreds of billions of dollars of military armaments.”

Bob Graham
Graham said, “The court essentially accepted without detailed substantiation the FBI’s assertions that techniques and procedures would potentially be compromised. I believe a trial was needed at which those unsubstantiated statements would be challenged with questions such as, ‘Over the 16 years since the events of 9/11 occurred have these techniques and procedures which proved to be so ineffective in preventing 9/11 been continued?’”

Florida Bulldog, working with Irish author Anthony Summers, first reported in September 2011 about a secret FBI investigation into a Saudi family living in Sarasota who abruptly departed their home in an upscale, gated community about two weeks before the 9/11 attacks – leaving behind their cars, clothes, furniture and food in the refrigerator. A senior counterterrorism agent said authorities later found phone records and gatehouse security records that linked the home of Abdulaziz and Anoud al-Hijji to 9/11 hijackers, including Mohamed Atta.

The FBI kept its Sarasota investigation secret for a decade. Former Sen. Graham has said the FBI did not disclose it to either the Joint Inquiry or the original 9/11 Commission.

An April 2002 FBI report released by the FBI during the litigation confirmed that account, saying agents found “many connections” between the Sarasota Saudis and “individuals associated with the terrorist attacks on 9/11/2001.” The FBI has since sought to discredit that report, saying the unnamed agent who wrote it had no basis for doing so.

The lawsuit forced the FBI to review 1,858 pages of records and to release parts of 713 pages. The FBI withheld 1,145 pages.

“The FBI violated FOIA by failing to respond to the Bulldog’s request for the Meese Commission records,” said Julin. “The Bulldog would not have gotten any of the records if it had not filed the lawsuit.”

The FBI PowerPoint pages Judge Altonaga has now ruled should remain under wraps include:

Two pages titled “Funding of the 9/11 Attacks” and “Early to Mid-2001 Additional Funding”
Pages titled: “Early to Mid-2000: Pilots/Intended Pilots Arrive U.S.”; “Investigative Findings” regarding hijacker “Identification” and “Financial. Ample Financing was provided”; “Early to Mid-2001: Non-pilots arrive U.S.”; “July-August 2001: Knife Purchases”; “August 2001: Reserving 9/11 Tickets”
Four pages titled “Ongoing Investigation”
Who bankrolled the 9/11 attacks is the central question at issue in complex civil litigation in New York in which 9/11 victims – survivors and relatives of the nearly 3,000 dead and businesses that suffered property damage – are seeking enormous damages from the oil-rich monarchy of Saudi Arabia. The country has denied any role in funding the September 11 attacks.

Seeking 9/11 Review Commission files

Florida Bulldog, through its corporate parent Broward Bulldog Inc., sued the FBI in June 2016, seeking records of the 9/11 Review Commission, a congressionally authorized body whose duties included reviewing new evidence not considered by Congress or the original 9/11 Commission. The Review Commission, whose members were chosen, paid and spoon-fed information by the FBI, issued its report in March 2015.

The FBI released a heavily redacted copy of its 9/11 Overview in February. The FBI cited national security, privacy and other reasons to withhold much information, including Exemption 7(E) of the Freedom of Information Act, which protects law enforcement “techniques and procedures.”

On May 16, Judge Altonaga ruled that the FBI had “failed to meet its burden in establishing Exemption 7(E) applies to the redacted information” in the 9/11 Overview because “much of it does not discuss any FBI investigative techniques and procedures; instead the material often encompasses facts and information gathered FBI suspects.”

In early June, the FBI asked Altonaga to reconsider her ruling, arguing that while the overview doesn’t “discuss techniques and procedures, the information contained in the document could still reveal” them. For example, the FBI said it had withheld a photograph taken by a security camera because its release “would disclose the location of the security camera,” possibly enabling future terrorists to circumvent detection.

Attorneys for Florida Bulldog countered that security measures have changed “immensely” since 9/11 and the government had not shown that security measures “that supposedly would be revealed would be of any utility to future terrorists.”

Altonaga’s new order doesn’t address that argument, but nevertheless sided with the FBI, saying the redactions are “necessary to prevent disclosure of FBI techniques or procedures.”

European Scientific Journal Concludes 9/11 was a controlled demolition ( CIA FOIA Documents 9/11 )
May 8, 2017 - The authors of the report are Steven Jones (former Physics Professor at Brigham Young University), Robert Korol (Professor Emeritus of Civil Engineering at McMaster University in Ontario and a graduate of the ...

European Scientific Journal Concludes 9/11 was a Controlled Demolition In a deafening media silence, the Europhysics News magazine published a study confirming that the 3 rounds of the World Trade Center have been subjected to controlled demolition. The European Scientific Journal , a publication of the European Scientific Institute , published an article titled “ 15 Years Later: On the Physics of High-Rise Building Collapses ,” in which they analyze the collapse of all three World Trade Center buildings.
Europhysics News is not, however, a site that the media could call "complotist" and that is the problem. It is a renowned magazine of the European physics community held by the European Physical Society. The authors of the report are Steven Jones (former Physics Professor at Brigham Young University), Robert Korol (Professor Emeritus of Civil Engineering at McMaster University in Ontario and a graduate of the Canadian Society for Civil Engineering and the Canadian Institute Engineers Mechanical design engineers with more than 25 years experience in structural design in aerospace design Anthony Szamboti (mechanical design engineer with more than 25 years of experience in structural design Aerospace and Communications) and Ted Walter (Director of Strategy and Development for Architects & Engineers for 9/11 Truth, AE911Truth), a non-profit organization that today represents more than 2,500 architects And engineers.

From fires collapse steel skyscrapers? Never seen.

First of all, the authors recall that never before 9/11 a skyscraper with a steel structure did not just collapse following a fire. On the site of the author, we invite you to visit this site. The only reason for these collapses would be controlled demolition. The report for why a fire can not produce the fall of such a building:

Concerning eyewitness accounts, 156 witnesses, including 135 rescuers, claimed to have seen and / or heard explosions before and / or during the collapses. The fact that the Twin Towers were destroyed with the explosive seems to have been the dominant initial opinion for most rescuers. "I thought it was exploding, in fact," said John Coyle, a firefighter. "Everybody, I think at this point thought that these buildings had been blown up."


It should be reiterated that fires have never caused the total collapse of a steel skyscraper before or since September 11. Did we attend an unprecedented event three times on September 11, 2001? NIST reports, which attempt to support this unlikely conclusion, fail to convince an increasing number of architects, engineers, and scientists. Instead, the evidence clearly leads to the conclusion that the three buildings were destroyed by controlled demolition.
Read the study here :

CIA has released to the public declassified versions of five internal documents related to the Agency’s performance in the lead-up to the attacks of September 11, 2001. The documents can be found at CIA’s Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) online reading room at http://www.foia.cia.gov/collection/decl ... 11-attacks .

Here's a direct link to download the Europhysics News report, 15 Years Later: On The Physics of High-Rise Build Collapses


And a link to the entire issue it was published in:

Confirmation hearing date set for Trump’s FBI pick

July 5, 2017
Updated July 5, 2017 4:22pm

WASHINGTON >> The confirmation hearing for Christopher Wray, President Donald Trump’s choice for FBI director, will be held July 12.


Two Republican lawmakers say their cars were vandalized
Rep. Sheldon Hanington of Lincoln and Rep. Tim Therriault of China have filed police reports, and Hanington mentioned the vandalism on the House floor during efforts to end the government shutdown.

AUGUSTA — Two Republican lawmakers say their cars were vandalized in recent days, coinciding with hot tempers and frayed nerves at the statehouse where lawmakers were trying to pass a budget amid a government shutdown.

Rep. Sheldon Hanington of Lincoln said his truck was vandalized Saturday night in the driveway of his home. A door was visibly dented and a rock was left in the bed of the truck.

Earlier in the day, protesters had clashed with Hanington in the hallways of the statehouse, according to Rob Poindexter, the spokesman for the Maine House Republicans.

Hanington mentioned the vandalism on the House floor Monday.

There were no witnesses to the damage, but the reports of vandalism prompted speculation that it was related to the unrest over the shutdown.

Poindexter said a second lawmaker, Rep. Tim Therriault of China parked his Mercedes in the legislative parking at the Maine State House on Monday. He later “noticed what he believed to be a mark consistent with a key scratch or possibly someone had hit the vehicle,” Poindexter said.

Capitol Police are


Racing to Catch Ludicrously Fast Model 3 Production Ramp, U.S. Automakers Grew EV Sales by 102 Percent in June
Early on, Tesla recognized that responses to climate change were necessary — not just from individuals and governments, but also from industry. And Tesla realized that, when mated with wind and solar energy, electrical vehicles could become a powerful force for driving an energy transition capable of rapidly cutting global carbon emissions.

(Reduction in coal burning and lower than predicted demand for fossil fuels has helped to generate a carbon emissions plateau during 2014 to 2016. Rapid additions of renewable energy sources like wind, solar, and electrical vehicles provides a potential to begin to bend down the global emissions curve near term and reduce the damage that is now being locked in by fossil fuel based carbon emissions. Image source: IEA.)

Tesla’s Market-Driven Response to Climate Change

Electrical vehicles possess a number of key sustainability advantages that aren’t widely talked-about in the public discourse. Electrical motors are considerably more efficient than ICE engines — so broadening EV use lowers energy consumption in transportation while at the same time allowing EVs to draw power from traditional and newly emerging renewable sources. The massive batteries housed in EVs and sold after-market also have the capacity to become a major solar and wind energy storage asset that could ultimately enable the removal of peaking, high emissions, coal and gas plants.

In light of these opportunities, back in the mid 2000s, Tesla made a bold, necessary move. Its leadership decided that it would attempt to become a major automaker dedicated solely to electrical vehicle sales. This business plan would hitch Tesla’s economic future entirely to the success or failure of clean energy ventures. Unlike most present automakers, Tesla would not suffer from divided loyalties to harmful incentives linked directly to fossil fuel based economies. It decided to make its clean energy break by producing top of the market, high-quality electric-only vehicles and, then, by leveraging loyalty to a superior brand, move vertically down into broader market segments.

(If Tesla’s planned Model 3 production ramp to 5,000 vehicles per week by end of 2017 holds true, then the all-electric automaker’s quarterly deliveries are about to go exponential. Image source: EV Obsession.)

Such a disruptive end run on the world’s energy and vehicle markets was bound to encounter stiff resistance and loud detractors. However, if successful, Tesla would force traditional energy and transport players to make a tough choice — follow in Tesla’s footsteps and try to compete, or face dwindling customer bases as a massive wave of innovation completely upended markets. The automaker decided that the best way to goad a broader transition toward electrical vehicles in western markets was to lead it. And that’s exactly what Tesla has been doing.

Major EV Sales Growth on Tap for 2017 Due to Automaker Shift + Model 3 Sales

In the U.S., during 2017, the trend of an emerging industry reaction to Tesla is becoming quite clear. The major automakers are all in a scramble as the imminent arrival of the Model 3 nears. The vehicle, which begins production this month, aims to provide very high quality, Tesla’s trademark swift acceleration, top-notch tech, groundbreaking automation, and 215+ miles of all-electric range for a 35,000 dollar base price. An offering that is disruptive due to quality and accessibility alone. But add to it the 400,000 + preorders that Tesla has accumulated and you’ve got what basically amounts to a volcanic eruption in the global auto market.

In large part, as a response to Tesla’s market-transformation plan, a number of major automakers are deciding to provide their own competing offerings. This year, GM beat the Model 3 to the start line with the 200+ mile range, high-quality Chevy Bolt. Toyota, launched its competitively-priced Prius Prime plug-in hybrid. Nissan redoubled efforts to position its best-selling Leaf all electric vehicle even as it announced plans for a 200+ mile range version in 2018. Meanwhile, Volvo plans to electrify all its vehicles by 2019.


NYPD cop who encouraged 2-year-old niece to use N-word in Instagram video gets suspended without pay

NEW YORK DAILY NEWS Wednesday, July 5, 2017, 9:14 PM


Democrats: Did Americans help Russia hack the election?
Some Republicans say Democrats are playing a dangerous game by stoking such a charged story line without evidence.


Starting in 2019, all new Volvos will be powered by an electric powertrain

NEW YORK DAILY NEWS Wednesday, July 5, 2017, 11:33 AM


Border Patrol agent charged with lying to a San Diego grand jury in friend's fraud investigation

A Tucson Border Patrol agent is being charged with lying to a San Diego federal grand jury in connection with a military housing voucher fraud scheme, according to a complaint unsealed last month.

David Wayne Skinner was called to testify about his friend, who was a Camp Pendleton Marine, and another Marine — both reservists who had been on active duty.

Maj. Jason Wild owned a home in Oceanside while Lt. Col. Michael Strom owned a home in Laguna Niguel. As part of the scheme, both men falsely claimed to be renting the other person’s home, according to court records. Both men filed travel expense vouchers with the military asking to be reimbursed for their lease payments, resulting in $147,715 in reimbursements going to Strom and nearly $60,000 to Wild, according to documents.


Sheriff bound over on forgery charges; case shines spotlight on notary issue
Thursday, July 6, 2017


Vatican police raid drug-fueled gay orgy at top priest's apartment

NEW YORK DAILY NEWS Wednesday, July 5, 2017, 12:32 PM


The Bootlegger, the Wiretap, and the Beginning of Privacy
July 5, 2017

Roy Olmstead, pictured arriving at a dock in Steilacoom, Washington, in 1931, was a Prohibition-era rum-runner who found himself at the center of a debate on Americans’ right to privacy.Photograph Courtesy MOHAI / Seattle Post-Intelligencer Collection

Nearly a century before a U.S. President accused his predecessor of ordering a “tapp” on his private telephone line, and before he tweeted a warning to the head of the F.B.I. that he had “better hope that there are no ‘tapes’ of our conversations,” a professional spy, armed with a pack of cigarettes and an earpiece, hid in the basement of the Henry Building, in downtown Seattle, catching crackling bits of words being spoken miles away. Richard Fryant had worked as a wiretapper for the New York Telephone Company, tasked with eavesdropping on his own colleagues, and now took freelance assignments in the Queen City. On this occasion, he was seeking dirt on Seattle’s corrupt mayor—who was suspected of having ties to Roy Olmstead, a local bootlegger—for a political rival. At the behest of his client, Fryant rigged micro-wires to a certain exchange, ELliott-6785, and began to listen.
“They got that load,” one man said, breathing heavily.
“The hell they did—who?” asked another.
“The federals.”
The men speaking on ELliott-6785 hung up, but the conversation had only just begun.
Criminals and Prohibition officials alike called Olmstead “the good bootlegger,” a moniker that reflected his singular business philosophy. He never diluted his whiskey with water or corrupted it with poison; he declined to dabble in the seedier offshoots of his profession, such as drugs or prostitution; and he abhorred violence, forbidding members of his organization from carrying weapons (“No amount of money is worth a human life,” he cautioned). If apprehended, his men were instructed to rely on bribes instead of violence.
Olmstead had a particular respect for policemen, having been a member of the Seattle force for thirteen years, reaching the rank of lieutenant. In 1920, with the onset of Prohibition, the thirty-three-year-old married father of two ventured to the other side of the law, making midnight runs to retrieve imported Canadian liquor from tugboats in the Puget Sound. This practice earned his dismissal from the force and made him a local celebrity. With his old police colleagues on his payroll, he was free to conduct business brazenly and with impunity, often unloading his booze at high noon from trucks marked “Fresh Fish.” Seattle citizens were thrilled to glimpse Olmstead on the street, wearing a fine suit and carrying a wallet fat with money, always ready with a joke. As one acquaintance noted, “It made a man feel important to casually remark, ‘As Roy Olmstead was telling me today.’ ”
Olmstead’s organization, comprised of an ever-growing staff of attorneys, dispatchers, clerks, skippers, navigators, bottlers, loaders, drivers, deliverymen, collectors, and salesmen, dominated the bootlegging scene in the Pacific Northwest. They relied heavily upon the telephone for day-to-day operations, using it to take orders, communicate updates on deliveries, and warn of impending raids, their words coursing across a web of wires connecting the city’s fifty-two thousand devices (approximately one for every six citizens). Olmstead set up his communication headquarters in the Henry Building, just a block from the Federal Building, and established three exchanges: ELliott 6785, 6786, and 6787. One of his men, a former taxi dispatcher, sat during business hours at a roll-top desk, taking and making calls, keeping meticulous records of each transaction. If a serious matter arose, such as an employee’s arrest, Olmstead himself called a friend on the Seattle police force to have it quashed. At the end of each day, the dispatcher unplugged the three telephones, to stop their ceaseless ringing, and the routine began anew in the morning.

FBI Octopus

City Police Officer receive overseas training
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Finance specialist says A&B continues to be scrutinised
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G-man joins the legal team
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Long Island law firm Ruskin Moscou Faltischek added a former FBI agent to its legal team. Richard Frankel joined the firm, which is based in Uniondale, as of ...


It is perhaps the key piece of forensic evidence in Russia’s suspected efforts to sway the November presidential election, but federal investigators have yet to get their hands on the hacked computer server that handled email from the Democratic National Committee.
Indeed, the only cybersecurity specialists who have taken a look at the server are from CrowdStrike, the Irvine, California-based private cybersecurity company that the DNC hired to investigate the hack — but which has come under fire itself for its work.
Some critics say CrowdStrike’s evidence for blaming Russia for the hack is thin. Members of Congress say they still believe Russia was responsible but wonder why the DNC has never allowed federal investigators to get a look at the key piece of evidence: the server. Either way, a key “witness” in the political scandal consuming the Trump administration remains beyond the reach of investigators.


Charles Webb, 23, is charged with four counts of introduction of drugs into a penal institution following his indictment on June 26, according to a report from NBC affiliate WBIR in Knoxville. He had only been on the job seven months and has been terminated, according to Sheriff Armando Fontes.

Fellow jail workers Jason Phillips and Alissa Lane were fired from their jobs last week and potential civil rights violations, the sheriff noted.

Charles Webb, 23, is charged with four counts of introduction of drugs into a penal institution following his indictment on June 26, according to a report from NBC affiliate WBIR in Knoxville. He had only been on the job seven months and has been terminated, according to Sheriff Armando Fontes. Fellow jail workers Jason Phillips and Alissa Lane were fired from their jobs last week and potential civil rights violations, the sheriff noted.

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hush, secret
Photo credit: Adapted by WhoWhatWhy from Geoffrey Meyer-van Voorthuijsen / Flickr (CC BY-NC 2.0)

As another mega-budget Hollywood movie about the Boston Marathon bombing nears release, the mainstream media are finally addressing the many unanswered questions concerning the mastermind of the bombing, Tamerlan Tsarnaev.

And yet — four years after the bombing and two years after Tamerlan’s younger brother Dzhokhar was sentenced to death for his role — the feds still aren’t talking.

WhoWhatWhy readers will be familiar with most of these open questions:

• How was Tamerlan able to travel back and forth to the country from which he sought asylum in 2012, despite being on multiple terror watchlists?

• Why was he not questioned about the 2011 murder of three of his friends?

• Was Tamerlan working for or manipulated by the feds for some purpose?

• Was the FBI or some other federal agency using Tamerlan’s desire to become a US citizen as leverage?

• Did the Tsarnaevs have help constructing the bombs?

• Was anyone else involved in planning or inspiring the plot?

As we highlighted in April, ABC News investigative reporter Michele McPhee published a damning exposé which documents the suspicion in Boston’s local law enforcement that the FBI is covering up its interactions with Tamerlan Tsarnaev prior to the bombing. McPhee’s investigation led her to conclude that there is indeed an FBI cover-up afoot.

More recently, WBUR’s (Boston’s NPR station) Meghna Chakrabarti produced an hour-long special titled “Unanswered Questions about Tamerlan Tsarnaev.” Taking off from McPhee’s findings, the radio program explores some of the mysteries about which the government remains tight-lipped.

Chakrabarti concludes: “There is still a tight shroud of secrecy wrapped around much of this case.”

While she is more circumspect about the possibility of a cover-up, her long and detailed account points to a raft of strange coincidences and anomalies that scream for further explanation.

Tamerlan Tsarnaev, Dzhokhar Tsarnaev
Unanswered Questions about Tamerlan Tsarnaev by Jamie Bologna and Meghna Chakrabarti (left). Maximum Harm by Michele McPhee. Photo credit: WBUR and ForeEdge

It’s not just the media that’s still being shut out.

As Dzhokhar Tsarnaev’s automatic federal death penalty appeal gets underway, prosecutors are refusing to turn over “classified” documents to Tsarnaev’s appellate lawyers.

What’s in those “classified” documents? It’s impossible to say, but they would likely shed some light on the unresolved mysteries surrounding Tamerlan Tsarnaev.

The lead prosecutor in Tsarnaev’s trial, William Weinreb, told WBUR that he thinks “it is fair to say that there are still a number of questions unanswered about that case. Maybe the answers will emerge over time.”

Sounds like the lead prosecutor was also kept in the dark.

Epidemic of Secrecy
The trial of Dzhokhar Tsarnaev was, from the beginning, cloaked in unprecedented levels of secrecy.

Various media organizations raised issues with the inordinate number of sealed motions during the high-profile trial.

The attorney who defended Whitey Bulger — another notorious Boston killer the feds were eager to distance themselves from — characterized Tsarnaev’s trial as an “epidemic of secrecy.”

Bulger, the South Boston mobster, was employed by the FBI for years as an informant — all the while carrying on his murderous mob operations in and around Boston. Bulger’s attorney, Jay Carney, told the Boston Globe “transparency should be the presumption” instead of all the secrecy and sealed documents in the Tsarnaev trial.

Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, Tamerlan Tsarnaev
Dzhokhar Tsarnaev and Tamerlan Tsarnaev, FBI Suspects 1 and 2.
Photo credit: FBI

That didn’t happen. The government invoked that old standby “national security,” allowing it to shroud important details of the back story in darkness.

Robert Ambrogi, executive director of the Massachusetts Newspaper Publishers Association, told Politico that the information lockdown “tells you that major parts of this case are being conducted out of the public view. If ever there was a case that cries out to be conducted in a public forum, this is it. It’s pretty shocking.”

The judge in the case, George A. O’Toole Jr., ignited a veritable firestorm among Boston media when, three months after the conclusion of the trial, he continued to refuse to release the names of jurors.

Experts quoted in media accounts at the time characterized the long delay as “unprecedented,” “an aberration,” and as having “no possible rationale.”

Even Dzhokhar Tsarnaev’s defense team, who presumably have a right to unfettered access to evidence against their client, found themselves filing numerous motions complaining to the judge about a lack of cooperation from the FBI and prosecution during the discovery phase of the trial.

Compounding their difficulties, Tsarnaev was placed on draconian Special Administrative Measures (SAMs) that severely limited the defense team’s ability to interact freely with their client. It also continues to prevent Tsarnaev from communicating with anyone from the media — as WhoWhatWhy found out when we were given a Kafkaesque runaround after we requested an interview.

Congress Shut Out
Because of FBI stonewalling, a delegation of congressmen felt compelled to travel to Russia, trying to get answers about Tamerlan Tsarnaev. Upon returning, Massachusetts Rep. Bill Keating (D-MA) said the FSB were more forthcoming than the FBI. (The FSB is Russia’s federal security service.)

Russia had warned the FBI back in 2011 that Tamerlan Tsarnaev was becoming radicalized, and might be making plans to travel to Russia to engage in terrorist activity. The FBI claims to have conducted an assessment of Tsarnaev but found no links to terrorism and closed the investigation.

The FBI’s pre-bombing interest in Tsarnaev thus came under intense, albeit short-lived, scrutiny.

Sen. Chuck Grassley, chairman of the Judiciary Committee which oversees the FBI, wrote a scathing letter to then-Director James Comey complaining about a lack of transparency to his oversight committee.

When the Inspector General of the Intelligence Community published an unclassified summary of “intelligence failures” that led up to the bombing, it too noted a lack of cooperation from the FBI, writing that “access to certain information was significantly delayed.”

And when 47 inspectors general from various executive agencies sent a letter to Congress in 2014 complaining about a growing problem of stonewalling of investigations by numerous executive branch agencies, the FBI’s lack of cooperation on the Boston Marathon bombing investigation was cited front and center.

As a result of that letter, a bipartisan Congressional coalition introduced an amendment to the original 1978 Inspector General Act. Grassley, a cosponsor of the amendment, wrote at the time that a “federal agency’s failure to give its inspector general timely access to information as required by law raises red flags. It begs the question, ‘What are you trying to hide?’”

Related front page panorama photo credit: Adapted by WhoWhatWhy from Street Scene (Aaron “tango” Tang / Wikimedia – CC BY 2.0), Dzhokhar Tsarnaev (US Marshals Service) and Tamerlan Tsarnaev (Wikimedia).


SEE IT: Columbus officer throws disabled woman out of her wheelchair during protest over Medicaid cuts

NEW YORK DAILY NEWS Monday, July 10, 2017, 10:21 AM


Trump Suggests Fired FBI Director Broke the Law by Releasing memos

By Steve Neavling

As the pressure on Donald Trump intensifies over an evolving federal investigation of alleged collusion with Russia, the president is resorting to what he knows best: Attack his perceived enemy on an unrelated issue.

On Twitter Monday morning, Trump wrote, “James Comey leaked CLASSIFIED INFORMATION to the media. That is so illegal!”

The president also tweeted a video Monday morning from Fox & Friends in which former U.S. Rep. Jason Chaffetz, R-Utah, suggested fired FBI Director James Comey broke the law by disseminating memos about his and Trump’s meetings.

“You can’t do that,” Chaffetz said. “It’s against the law.”

On Sunday evening, Chaffetz also tweeted, “Comey’s private memos on Trump conversations contained classified material. If true, this is bombshell news.”


Minneapolis cop shoots two dogs in woman's backyard while investigating canceled burglary alarm

NEW YORK DAILY NEWS Monday, July 10, 2017, 5:41 AM


Man Busted For Phoning In Bomb Threat To Police Used Pay Phone In Precinct Lobby


Comedian George Lopez called on Trump to 'deport the police' on Instagram

NEW YORK DAILY NEWS Monday, July 10, 2017, 11:12 AM


North Carolina priest allegedly points gun at two people during road rage incident

NEW YORK DAILY NEWS Monday, July 10, 2017, 11:10 AM


Afghan girls trying to attend robotics competition denied U.S. visa again

July 10, 2017, 5:55 AM


Retired prison guard faces human rights raps for being the bully of his Staten Island block
NEW YORK DAILY NEWS Monday, July 10, 2017, 4:00 AM


July 2, 2017
WYCO deputy fired, charged with pocketing money from sex offenders

7-1-17 Kansas:

Kansas City, KS - A Wyandotte County deputy faces felony charges for stealing money intended for the Sheriff's office, according to the county prosecutor.

Jay Pennington,38, was team leader for the WYCO sheriff's Offender Registration Unit (ORU) and responsible for taking cash fees from registered sex offenders.

Prosecutor Michael Dupree alleges Pennington was making fake receipts and pocketing the $20 cash fees. It's not clear yet how much money is missing.

He was fired Thursday, June 29, and arrested.


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What Dog Shootings Reveal About American Policing
A needless assault on two Minneapolis emotional-support pets is the latest demonstration of a persistent problem in law enforcement.

The two dogs, Ciroc and Rocko, that were shot by Minneapolis police officer. Courtesy of Jennifer LeMay


Trailer released for '9/11' movie starring Charlie Sheen who said attack was 'controlled demolition'
NEW YORK DAILY NEWS Updated: Friday, July 21, 2017, 9:19 AM

A Japanese trailer has been released from the upcoming drama "9/11" starring Charlie Sheen.

What's notable is that the "Two and a Half Men" star has previously raised questions about the 9/11 terrorist attacks.

During a radio interview with Alex Jones in 2006, the 51-year-old actor claimed that the towers had collapsed because of a "controlled demolition," rather than two planes being flown into them.

"We're not the conspiracy theorists on this issue," he said. "It seems to me like 19 amateurs with box cutters taking over four commercial airlines and hitting 75% of the targets — that feels like a conspiracy theory."

He also spoke at the Neocon Agenda — a conference organized by neoconservatives, some of whom believe in 9/11 conspiracy theories — and called for people to "wake up and join us," speaking out to "unleash the juggernaut of truth."

It's also Sheen’s first


image: http://cdn3-www.dogtime.com/assets/uploads/2014/06/file_19918_column_arzy-dog-shot-by-cop-gets-justice.jpg

Brandon Carpenter and Arzy; policeman Brian Thierbach (not pictured) claimed the dog bit his foot, prompting the officer to shoot the 14-year-old mutt in the head.

In late April, traveling musician Brandon Carpenter of Portland, Maine, experienced the tragedy of a lifetime during a trip through Sulphur, Louisiana.

Carpenter, 28, was visiting the small Calcasieu Parish town with his dog Arzy, a Labrador Retriever–Newfoundland–Golden Retriever mix, and their friend, 21-year-old Logan Laliberte. Arzy, Carpenter, and Laliberte had been traveling around the country performing, hopping trains, and hitching rides, the Portland Press Herald reports, and were on their way to stay with a friend in Lake Charles.

The trio arrived in Sulphur during a rainstorm, so they took refuge in the back of an old box truck in the parking lot of a newspaper office to wait out the bad weather. Unfortunately, their choice of shelter prompted someone to call the police.

Officer Brian Thierbach of the Sulphur Police Department was the responding officer. Carpenter says he and his friend were sleeping when Officer Thierbach arrived and ordered them out of the truck. Thierbach put Carpenter and Laliberte in handcuffs, told them to lie on the ground, and then proceeded into the truck to retrieve their belongings.

“We were extremely compliant. We did everything he asked us to do,” Carpenter insists.

Meanwhile, Arzy was inside the truck, secured by a 4-foot leash. When Thierbach asked if Arzy was going to attack him, Carpenter said there was no way, that Arzy was harmless and sweet.

“I said no, it’s an incredibly friendly dog,” Carpenter remembers.

Newspaper employee Eric Midkiff looked on as Officer Thierbach approached Arzy, the police officer allegedly even petting the dog for a few seconds.

“His tongue was out. His tail was wagging. That’s my dog,” Carpenter said of Arzy. “Arzy maybe did a little sniff, like do you want to play?”

That’s when, without warning, Officer Thierbach drew his gun, shooting and killing Arzy.

Arzy was only 14 months old when he died.

“Then [the officer] jumped down from the back of the truck and shoots my dog in the head,” says Carpenter. “I watched him convulse his last breath and twitch the life out of him.”

Carpenter says he and Laliberte watched in horror as poor Arzy’s body was disposed of, thrown into a garbage bag. When Carpenter insisted that Officer Thierbach had needlessly shot Arzy, Thierbach claimed the dog had attacked him and bitten him in his foot.

But Eric Midkiff, the newspaper employee, witnessed the entire incident. Midkiff contends that Arzy never attacked Officer Thierbach, and said as much in his official report. Midkiff confirms that Arzy was indeed wagging his tail, happily greeting Officer Thierbach in a friendly manner. Theirbach shot Arzy when the lovable dog brushed up against him.

“All he had to do is take one giant step back,” Carpenter tells the Sulphur Daily News. “Why didn’t he ask me to move the dog or just take one big step back if he was uncomfortable?”

The loss of his dog has taken a toll on Carpenter, who maintains that Arzy was an innocent victim.

“That dog wouldn’t hurt a fly. Everybody loved Arzy,” Carpenter tells the Bangor Daily News (BGN). “Everybody said, ‘Oh, he’s so friendly. So gentle.’ He was an angel in dog form.”

Following Arzy’s death, the Sulphur Police Department launched an investigation into whether or not Officer Thierbach’s conduct was appropriate given the circumstances.

“I am a dog lover and I am deeply saddened by this incident,” Sulphur Police Chief Louis Coats told the BGN in early May. “I realize there is nothing I can say that would take away the hurt this incident has caused Mr. Carpenter. The actions of Officer Thierbach did not represent what I expect from the officers of the Sulphur Police Department.”

Officer Thierbach submitted his resignation May 7, but the department continued a criminal investigation.

“Those of us who serve as law enforcement officers do so with the responsibility of serving and protecting the community as professionals,” Chief Coats added. “The resignation of Officer Theirbach was accepted so that the officers and community can heal and move forward.”

Carpenter said Thierbach’s resignation was certainly a step in the right direction, but continued to push for justice. Supporters started a Facebook group, “Justice for Arzy,” hoping law enforcement would punish Thierbach.

Finally, on June 5, a grand jury served Brian Thierbach with an indictment for one count of aggravated animal cruelty. A warrant was issued for Thierbach’s arrest. Thierbach was taken into custody and his bail has been set at $20,000.

“They came to the right decision,” Carpenter tells the Southwest Daily News.

Sources: Southwest Daily News, “Justice for Arzy”, Sulphur Daily News, Bangor Daily News, Portland Press Herald

Read more at http://dogtime.com/trending/19918-police-officer-charged-after-shooting-friendly-dog#ZkiUJOBMdLCoc8LR.99

Link du jour








Minneapolis police chief says shooting death of Australian woman 'should not have happened'
NEW YORK DAILY NEWS Friday, July 21, 2017, 1:30 AM


Trump team seeks to control, block Mueller’s Russia investigation

Here's how Trump’s lawyers are trying to undercut the Russia probe

President Trump has asked his advisers about his power to pardon people in connection to the Russia probe, according to people familiar with the effort. (Amber Ferguson/The Washington Post)
By Carol D. Leonnig, Ashley Parker, Rosalind S. Helderman and Tom Hamburger July 21 at 9:47 AM
Some of President Trump’s lawyers are exploring ways to limit or undercut special counsel Robert S. Mueller III’s Russia investigation, building a case against what they allege are his conflicts of interest and discussing the president’s authority to grant pardons, according to people familiar with the effort.

Trump has asked his advisers about his power to pardon aides, family members and even himself in connection with the probe, according to one of those people. A second person said Trump’s lawyers have been discussing the president’s pardoning powers among themselves.


China Cracks 100 Gigawatts of Solar Capacity as Musk Pitches More U.S. Gigafactories
When it comes to solar energy, China is on one hell of a roll.

In the first half of 2017, the massive country added a record 24.4 gigawatts of solar electrical generating capacity. This boosted its total solar capacity to 101.82 gigawatts. By comparison, China has about 900 gigawatts of coal generating capacity, but recent coal curtailments provide an opportunity for renewable energy to take up a larger portion of China’s energy market share. Such an event would provide a crucial opening for the world to begin a necessary early draw-down of global carbon emissions in the face of rising risks from climate change.

(The government of China proudly touts its clean energy advances. Trump Administration — not so much.)

This very rapid solar growth rate, if it continues, puts China on track to beat its 2016 record annual solar installation rate of 34 GW. And, already, it is 9 percent ahead of last year’s more than doubling of new annual solar capacity toward a likely 2017 build-out at around 40 GW. China is also adding new high voltage power cables and averaging about 25 GW of new wind energy capacity each year. A stunning combined wind and solar build rate that has led CNN to claim that China is crushing the U.S. when it comes to renewable energy production and adoption rates. With the Trump Administration still wallowing in climate change denial, withdrawing from the Paris Climate Summit, and courting dangerous deals with petro-states like Russia, it’s enough to make you wonder if American technology and climate leadership are a thing of the past.

Back in the states, more progressive American (it’s not tough to beat Trump in this regard) Elon Musk was trying to help prevent just such a slide into backward-looking regression. Addressing 30 state governors at the summer governor’s association meeting, Musk explained that only a 100 by 100 mile square region was needed to capture enough solar energy to power the U.S. and that the battery storage needed for such a system to provide energy 24/7 would only cover a region 1×1 mile in size.

(Elon Musk claims an area of solar panels the size of the blue square could power the U.S. The black square represents the size of the area needed for energy storage to provide 24/7 power. Image source: Tesla.)

This is less than the total rooftop and highway area of all buildings and roads in the U.S. Musk also soft-pitched the notion of new gigafactories to the 30 state governors in attendance. Hopefully, a few will take up what amounts to an amazing economic opportunity. With Nevada seeing major new growth surrounding Musk’s Gigafactory 1 site, you’d think that interest would be high.

Oddly enough, 20 governors were AWOL at the meeting. Primarily republicans, apparently they had “more important” work to attend to than helping America become energy independent while fighting to prevent the fat tail of global climate catastrophe from crashing down on their constituents like a 1960s Godzilla on a mad romp in Tokyo.

Steve Hanley of Clean Technica notes:

“Whether any of the governors will take Elon’s words to heart remains to be seen. Only 30 of them bothered to attend. Many Republicans stayed home so they could focus on challenging issues like how to discriminate against Muslims, slash Medicare rolls, promote more fracking on public lands, and prevent transgender people from using public bathrooms. When you are in government, it is important to keep your priorities straight.”


China Adds a Record 24.4 GW of Solar in First Half of 2017



Clean Technica


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NYPD worker robbed Manhattan bank by claiming to have homemade bomb:

Wednesday, July 19, 2017, 8:14 PM

The suspect is a custodial assistant for the NYPD and was arrested Tuesday on charges of robbing a bank.
Cops busted an NYPD employee who held up a Greenwich Village bank and threatened the teller with a homemade bomb, officials said Wednesday.

Calissa Alston, 27, a custodial assistant at the NYPD's Military and Extended Leave Desk, was arrested Tuesday afternoon.

Alston walked into a Chase bank branch on Sixth Ave. near W. 4th St. on July 12 and handed the bank teller a note demanding cash, police said.

The note read, "I have a homemade bomb, pass me your loose $50s and $100s. Hurry the f--- up."

Bank robbers, ages 71 and 60, busted after Manhattan heist
The frightened teller handed over the $1,100 and hit the silent alarm once Alston bolted, authorities said.

Detectives originally believed Alston, who spoke in a deep voice, was a man dressed in women’s clothing.

Alston was on a leave of absence from the NYPD when she was arrested Tuesday, although it is unclear why.

The Staten Islander was suspended from the department as a result of her arrest, cops said.

Alston is charged with robbery. She was also arrested in April for trying to cash a check of an NYPD colleague. She was charged with petit larceny and criminal possession of stolen property


MTA officer accused of hitting pedestrian and dropping the injured man off in a Staten Island parking lot

Friday, June 16, 2017, 11:26 AM


Exhumation of Salvador Dali's remains finds his mustache still intact

Friday, July 21, 2017


CBS NEWS July 20, 2017, 9:44 PM
Graphic body cam footage shows police officer shooting 2 dogs

MINNEAPOLIS -- Body camera video released Thursday shows how two dogs approached a Minneapolis police officer before they were shot and seriously wounded in their fenced-in backyard earlier this month, CBS Minnesota reports.

The officer was responding to a false security alarm on July 8 when he shot the dogs, according to the police report. One suffered a bullet wound to the jaw, and the other was hit multiple times in its body. Both dogs survived but will require extensive treatment.

In the body camera footage, the first dog can be seen approaching the officer, identified as Michael Mays, slowly with its tail wagging. After the officer shoots the animal in the face, the other dog dashes toward the officer and is hit by gunfire.

"I dispatched both of them," the officer reports immediately after the shooting. Video then shows Mays climb the backyard fence, walk around the house and speak to the teenage resident who tripped the alarm.

Body camera footage showing a police officer shooting two dogs in Minneapolis. MINNEAPOLIS POLICE DEPARTMENT / CBS MINNESOTA
He apologizes to the sobbing teenager for shooting the dogs, saying, "I don't like shooting dogs, I love dogs."

In a report filed the night of the shooting, Mays said that the dogs, which he described as pit bulls, charged at him.

The police union defended Mays, saying the first pit bull growled at him before approaching.

However, the body camera footage cannot verify this, as no sound was recorded until after shots were fired.

The body camera footage was released Thursday afternoon by Michael Padden, the attorney for the dogs' owner, Jennifer LeMay, who says the animals are service dogs for her children. At a news conference, Padden wanted to know why the audio on Mays' body camera wasn't turned on as the officer approached the house.

The day after the shooting happened, LeMay posted surveillance video taken by a backyard camera to Facebook, where it went viral, garnering hundreds of thousands of views. The video clearly shows Mays shooting both dogs and climbing over the fence.

A Facebook image of one of Jennifer LeMay's dogs. CBS MINNESOTA / JENNIFER LEMAY / FACEBOOK
Minneapolis Police Chief Janee Harteau described the surveillance video as "difficult to watch." She called for an Internal Affairs use of force review of the incident and said that officer training courses on dealing with dogs will be updated.

So far, the department has yet to comment on Mays' actions.

The wounded dogs required thousands of dollars in veterinary treatment. A GoFundMe page to raise money for medical expenses has received nearly $40,000.

Harteau also said that the police department will help pay for treatment expenses.

The dog shooting is the second Minneapolis police incident this month involving questions of police and body cameras.

Over the weekend, Justine Damond, an Australian yoga teacher reporting a possible sexual assault in the alley behind her home, was fatally shot by a responding officer.

While both officers on the scene were wearing body cameras, neither was turned on when the fatal shot was fired. The shooting remains under investigation.

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'Draw Muhammad' conference organizer: FBI 'wanted us dead'
The paper has requested all documentation from the Garland Police Department that made mention or made reference to an FBI agent on the scene.

Two years ago, two Muslim terrorists, Elton Simpson and Nadir Soofi, drove from Phoenix to Garland, Texas, to attack a “Draw Muhammad” competition arranged by activist Pamela Geller.


They were stopped at a parking checkpoint, where they started shooting, and promptly were shot dead by police.

A few days later, police said they did not expect to identify other suspects in the attack for which ISIS later claimed responsibility.

However, a number of related investigative documents are being held in secret by Garland police, according to the Washington Examiner.

The paper has requested all documentation from the Garland Police Department that made mention or made reference to an FBI agent on the scene.

The Examiner said police say the investigation still is pending.

The “tight hold” on documents by police, the paper said, “is making it difficult for a security guard who was shot during the event to learn whether an undercover FBI agent was there at the scene and knew that a terrorism event was being planned.”

See Pamela Geller’s books, including “Stop the Islamization of America,” in the WND Superstore.

The report said the security guard’s lawyer “believes the FBI agent was trying to get close to the terrorists and may not have warned authorities of the event in order to keep his cover.”

Related stories:

The guard, Bruce Joiner, was shot in the knee, and he and his lawyer now want the details that led to a “60 Minutes” report claiming an undercover FBI agent was behind the car carrying Simpson and Soofi and was taking photographs as they opened fire.

The Examiner reported the FBI agent fled the scene as the attack began but was detained briefly by Garland police.

Read more at http://www.wnd.com/2017/08/draw-muhammad-conference-organizer-fbi-wanted-us-dead/#zukJ4H6im85wHlU3.99





New FBI director is Chris Christie's Bridgegate lawyer and has Christie's infamous cellphone

After firing James Comey for the crime of "showboating," Trump chose Christopher Wray to be the new FBI director. A Senate committee approved the nomination. This is the lawyer who collected over $600 thousand from New Jersey taxpayers for personally representing Chris Christie in the Bridgegate scandal

With Wray’s assistance, Christie wasn’t charged — though prosecutors at the trial said he knew about the closing of commuter bridge lanes as they were happening, which he has denied. Christie said he would have testified at the trial if subpoenaed, but he wasn’t called.
p>The only time Wray’s name surfaced during pretrial motions was when it was revealed that he had a cellphone, believed lost, that Christie had been using during the lane closures. Defense attorneys sought access to the phone but their request was denied by a judge.

The mystery over the missing cell phone that Gov. Chris Christie used during the period when there were legislative hearings on the brewing Bridgegate scandal has been solved

The phone, which lawyers for Bridgegate defendants Bill Baroni and Bridget Anne Kelly have been seeking, is in the custody of Christie's personal lawyer, Christopher Wray of King and Spalding.

Brian Murray, a spokesman for Christie, confirmed that Wray has the phone.

The news that Christie's lawyer has the phone comes just after a federal judge ruled Thursday against Baroni, the former deputy executive director of the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey, and Kelly, Christie's former deputy chief of staff, who issued a subpoena for the phone, as well as the electronic devices used by other top Christie staffers.

And according to Senator Jeff Merkley, Wray is a "consistent GOP donor" and is a partner in a law firm that "represents the Trump Trust and Russian oil."

Photo of Governor Chris Christie: Gage Skidmore




Only 6 people have ever voted against an FBI director. Five of them did today
By Ryan Struyk, CNN
Updated 10:14 PM ET, Tue August 1, 2017





John Barrasso to scold feds for quietly killing new FBI headquarters


Aug 2, 2017, 12:01 AM


"The security and efficiency arguments for this are clear. What is not clear is why this project was suddenly halted, why Congress was not notified in advance, and what happens now," Environment and Public Works Committee Chairman Sen. John Barrasso, R-Wyo., will say at a morning hearing, according to an excerpt of his prepared remarks obtained by the Washington Examiner.

A top Senate Republican is expected to scold federal agencies Wednesday for scrapping plans last month to relocate the Federal Bureau of Investigation's headquarters without informing Congress, while simultaneously looking for ways to reopen the relocation review process.

"The security and efficiency arguments for this are clear. What is not clear is why this project was suddenly halted, why Congress was not notified in advance, and what happens now," Environment and Public Works Committee Chairman Sen. John Barrasso, R-Wyo., will say at a morning hearing, according to an excerpt of his prepared remarks obtained by the Washington Examiner. "Senators should not have to find out about a decision of this magnitude" through the news media, he said.

Wednesday's hearing will be the first oversight hearing since the General Service Administration announced it was canceling the FBI relocation review on July 11 because of lack of funding and uncertainty in the procurement process. Barrasso's committee has direct oversight over large federal public works projects.



"I have no doubt that there is a need to replace the FBI's existing headquarters. The men and women of the FBI, who keep us all safe, deserve an office building that meets their needs," Barrasso said in his remarks.

Senior officials from the FBI, GSA, and the Government Accountability Office will be at the hearing.

"At this time, GSA and the FBI are working together to meet the FBI's short- and long-term housing needs and mission requirements, that necessarily includes deciding what investments to make in the Hoover Building now that we know the FBI will be housed there for longer than expected," said Michael Gelber, the GSA's acting public building commissioner, in prepared remarks.

"Additionally, the FBI's portfolio of leased space is being evaluated as well as options to procure a new headquarters for the FBI," he said. "In closing, GSA is committed to carrying out our mission of delivering the best value in real estate. The need for the FBI to have a modern headquarters remains. GSA will continue to work with members of this committee, the FBI, and others in the administration and Congress to meet this need."

The FBI official in his testimony, however, said the FBI's J. Edgar Hoover building in downtown Washington would be too costly to retrofit and is wholly inadequate to protect the agency from a physical or cyber attack.



Link du jour










Unjustified FBI harassment of Black mayors Coleman Young (Detroit), Harold Washington (Chicago) and Marion Barry (Washington, DC); white agents urinating on photographs of President Bill Clinton and Vice-President Al Gore; a white agents' fundraiser for white policemen accused of murdering a Black Detroit motorist; agents pasting the picture of an ape over the photo of an African American agent's child; sheet-clad classmates pretending to be Ku Klux Klansmen at the FBI Academy; the mysterious explosion of a "troublesome" Black agent's FBI-issued vehicle -- all of this, too, is the FBI, and former Special Agent Tyrone Powers tells it as only a conscious Black insider could.



Corbett may have suffered first blow while in bed, expert tells murder ...
A forensic scientist said blood spatter marks indicated retired FBI agent Thomas Michael Martens (67) was standing above Mr Corbett (39) when the Irish ...





Charges Dropped In Baltimore Body-Camera Video Case




WATCH: California Cop Draws Gun During Traffic Stop (Strong Language) © Facebook/Feo Mas
01:43 02.08.2017(updated 03:44 02.08.2017) Get short URL91358312
A video made by a driver pulled over by a Campbell County police officer documents their interactions seconds after the officer pulled his gun on the driver and passenger during a routine traffic stop along California’s Highway 101 Thursday afternoon.
The roughly nine minute video, which was posted on Facebook, shows the officer point his weapon toward the passenger, even as the passenger repeatedly asks the cop to put his gun away, as his hands are clearly visible.

"Why are you still pointing the gun at me, bro?" the passenger asked. "My hands are right here."

According to the Campbell Police Department, the pistol was drawn after the passenger, helping the driver look for her "additional paperwork," made an "unexpected movement towards the bottom of the seat," which caused the officer "to perceive a threat and draw his handgun."

As the officer called in for back-up personnel to assist him, the driver of the car can be heard asking him to put the gun away in favor of a taser gun. The officer did not comply.

"Don’t you have like a taser, or something, that you could use before you use [the gun]?" pleaded the driver. "You’re telling him to relax, but you have a gun on him."

"It is never a comfortable position to have a gun pointed at you, regardless of whether it is an officer," the department’s press release stated. "Unfortunately, the length of time that the officer’s gun was drawn lasted much longer than normal based on his location … If the same situation would have occurred closer to back-up officers, it would most likely have been resolved much sooner."

California Bill Would Mandate Release of Police Bodycam Footage
While the officer’s body camera recorded the entire incident, there is no word on whether the Silicon Valley police department will release the footage in its entirety or through excerpts, The Mercury News reported.
Gary Berg, the public information officer for the police department, noted that the first five minutes of the encounter captured by the body camera showed a "cordial conversation" between the occupants of the vehicle and the officer before the friendly environment soured.

Although the responding officer was outside of his jurisdiction, as a "peace officer in the State of California" the officer still had the authority to pull over



A former Reeves County contracted prison guard received a lenient sentence for his role in a cocaine trafficking scheme after tearfully telling the judge he had committed the crime to buy a home for his two children.

Fabian Dominguez was sentenced July 28 in El Paso to a year and a day in prison in federal court after he pleaded guilty to one count of conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute more than 500 grams of cocaine.




Published: August 1, 2017




Another Appeals Court Denies Suppression Of Evidence Obtained With An Invalid FBI Warrant
from the so-much-for-valid-warrants-being-better-than-invalid-ones dept
A second appeals court has handed down a ruling on the constitutionality of the Network Investigative Technique (NIT) deployed by the FBI during its Playpen child porn investigation. The Tenth Circuit Appeals Court overturned the suppression of evidence granted by the lower court, ruling that the FBI's NIT warrant was invalid but that the agent's "good faith" reliance on the warrant prevented exclusion of the evidence.
Multiple courts have found the NIT warrant invalid. The warrant was obtained in Virginia but the search the FBI's malware performed accessed computers all over the world. Prior to the recent Rule 41 changes, warrant execution was limited to the jurisdiction it was obtained in. The Appeals Court worked around the jurisdictional limit by reasoning the NIT was sent from Virginia and returned info gathered in the same jurisdiction. It just kind of glossed over the part where computers located all over the nation were briefly infected by the NIT to obtain the information needed to pursue suspects.
The Eighth Circuit Appeals Court decision [PDF] finds more problems with the NIT warrant and execution than the Tenth Circuit did. The consolidated appeal, however, ultimately finds in favor of the government, overturning two lower court suppression orders.
First, the good news. The appeals court finds the FBI does indeed need warrants to perform these searches, even if IP addresses aren't necessarily protected by the Fourth Amendment.
In this case, the FBI sent computer code to the defendants’ respective computers that searched those computers for specific information and sent that information back to law enforcement. Even if a defendant has no reasonable expectation of privacy in his IP address, he has a reasonable expectation of privacy in the contents of his personal computer. [...] Moreover, the NIT retrieved content from the defendants’ computers beyond their IP addresses. We conclude the execution of the NIT in this case required a warrant.
The court also disposes of the government's "but it's kind of just a tracking device" argument:
Although plausible, this argument is belied by how the NIT actually worked: it was installed on the defendants’ computers in their homes in Iowa. The government rightly points out that our court interprets Rule 41 flexibly in light of advances in technology... but we agree with the district court that the “virtual trip” fiction “stretches the rule too far,” We agree with the majority of courts that have reviewed the NIT warrant. These courts have concluded that “the plain language of Rule 41 and the statutory definition of ‘tracking device’ do not . . . support so broad a reading as to encompass the mechanism of the NIT used in this case.” Id. Thus, we hold that the NIT warrant exceeded the magistrate judge’s jurisdiction.
It also agrees with the lower courts' findings the warrant was invalid from the moment it was obtained, since the NIT was clearly going to be traveling outside of the issuing judge's jurisdiction. But that's where the good news ends. The appeals court applies the "good faith" exception and declares the requesting agent -- who knew the NIT would travel outside the jurisdiction and suggested as much in the warrant request -- could rely on a warrant signed by a judge to execute these extrajurisdictional searches.
The defendants also argue that the NIT warrant was facially deficient because FBI agents should have known that a warrant purporting to authorize thousands of searches throughout the country could not be valid. Specifically, Horton argues that “there can be no credible argument that officers reasonably believed that none of the 214,898 members of [Playpen] were located outside of Virginia.” We, however, will not find an obvious deficiency in a warrant that a number of district courts have ruled to be facially valid. Further, we have declined to impose an obligation on law enforcement to “know the legal and jurisdictional limits of a judge’s power to issue interstate search warrants.” Law enforcement did not demonstrate bad faith, and we will apply the Leon balancing test as instructed by the Supreme Court.
So, law enforcement officers are not required to know the legal limits of the warrants they seek. Apparently, neither are judges, as the judge signed off on this warrant despite being told it would be executed outside of his jurisdiction.
But that's not the worst part of the opinion. The worst part is this: the court says there's no deterrent value in suppressing evidence obtained with a facially-invalid warrant because the law changed after the fact.
Because Rule 41 has been updated to authorize warrants exactly like this one, there is no need to deter law enforcement from seeking similar warrants.
Under this rationale, anyone currently incarcerated for marijuana possession or distribution in states where weed is now legal should have their sentences immediately vacated. After all, there's no deterrent effect in keeping them locked up, now that both actions have become legal.
So, it's now 2-0 in favor of the FBI in federal appeals courts. In the future, its NIT activities won't receive much scrutiny. But it appears everything it did in violation of Rule 41 prior to the rule changes is being forgiven by higher courts -- whether with generous applications of the "good faith" doctrine or by making the Rule 41 changes effectively retroactive.




US judge orders FBI investigation into records of 1953 Executive Order targeting LGBTI federal employees
President Eisenhower signed the Executive Order
US judge orders FBI investigation into records of 1953 Executive Order targeting LGBTI federal employeesWikipediaJudge orders FBI investigation into Executive Order signed by President Eisenhower (pictured) targeting LGBTI people1 August 2017 by Anya Crittenton
In a new ruling, a US federal judge ordered the FBI to conduct an investigation into Executive Order (EO) 10450. This decades-old order led to purging of gay and lesbian federal employees during the height of McCarthyism in the 1950s. It was signed by President Dwight Eisenhower in 1953.

Judge Royce Lamberth, against objections from the Department of Justice (DOJ), determined an earlier FBI search was ‘inadequate’. The ruling came days after the DOJ decided the 1964 Civil Rights Act does not protect LGBTI people.
Yahoo! News first reported the news of Lamberth’s ruling. They also published the entirety of Lamberth’s unyielding decision, which can be viewed and read here.
This order was a point of interest in Yahoo’s documentary, Uniquely Nasty: The U.S. Government’s War on Gays. In the film, Douglas Charles, a Penn State University historian, stated about the order: ‘In terms of FBI abuses, this ranks near the top. It was an effort to silence [gays], it was an effort to ruin their lives. Because if you were exposed as gay in the 1950s or 1960s, your life as you knew it was over.’
The Mattachine Society of Washington, D.C., an educational non-profit with the mission of performing archival research to uncover erased LGBTI stories, filed a lawsuit via the Freedom of Information Act against the DOJ last year to release documents related to EO 10450. In response, the FBI discovered 5,500 documents but determined it would be burdensome to sort through them all. They also stated no documents were found relating to Warren Burger, the assistant attorney general charged with enforcing the ban.
‘Thousands of LGBT Americans were ruthlessly investigated, interrogated and fired because of this order,’ Charles Francis, the president of the Mattachine Society, told Yahoo! News.
An inadequate investigation
Regarding Mattachine’s lawsuit, Lamberth wrote in his ruling: ‘The Court finds it nearly impossible to believe that a search for every permutation of the name of the man who was charged with carrying out EO 10450, a robust federal mandate that built upon an established FBI initiative, yielded zero responsive documents.’
Furthermore, in the FBI’s initial search, they looked for the key words ‘Executive Order 10450,’ ‘Sex Deviate,’ and ‘Sex Deviate Program’. However, the EO used another term — ‘Sexual Perversion’ — and the FBI never searched for this term.
Lamberth criticized this oversight in his ruling: ‘The language of EO 10450 uses the term ‘sexual perversion’ rather than ‘Sex Deviate’ and the FBI’s affidavit does not address this shift in institutional language.’


FBI Octopus


A New Dawn for Public-Private Sector Cyber Collaboration to Power ...
... ICF International; Hugo Fueglein, Managing Director, Diversified Search; John Iannarelli, Former Senior Executive Advisor, FBI; Alissa Johnson, VP & CISO, ...



Crazy Times in Flint: Cops Visit Residents Who Sign Mayoral Recall Petition

By Allan Lengel


Posts: 8,240
Reply with quote  #256 
Link du jour










How the FBI in Boston May Have Pursued the Wrong “Terrorist”
Two years ago the FBI focused on a suspect with a far-fetched scheme—right as it stopped tracking the Boston Marathon bomber.


NYPD cop commits suicide inside his Queens home
NEW YORK DAILY NEWS Sunday, August 13, 2017, 6:15 PM


Sheriff’s Misconduct May Spare Mass Murderer’s Life
A state judge will decide next week whether the worst mass murderer in the history of Orange County, California, must face the death penalty or can avoid it because of misconduct by the sheriff.

SANTA ANA, Calif. (CN) — A state judge will decide next week whether the worst mass murderer in the history of Orange County, California, must face the death penalty or can avoid it because of misconduct by the sheriff.

Scott DeKraai murdered his ex-wife and seven others at a Seal Beach hair salon in October 2011. He confessed almost immediately and pleaded guilty to murder in May 2014.

For the past three months, Orange County Superior Court Judge Thomas Goethals has been considering whether he should bar the death penalty in the case because the sheriff’s department violated DeKraai’s rights by intentionally and repeatedly hiding information about a secret program to use jailhouse informants against criminal defendants — including DeKraai.


Declining Coal Revenue, and Wildfires, Bust Montana's Budget
Three years of declining revenue from coal mining in eastern Montana have left the state’s books in tough shape, with officials saying state agencies will have to find ways to cut $93 million from their budgets.


Unions Want Records on Sheriff's Fight Against Sanctuary Bill
Two labor groups have sued Los Angeles County Sheriff Jim McDonnell seeking a court order to release communications between his department and the Trump administration about California’s sanctuary bill.


California AG Demands EPA's Vetting Records on Pruitt
Accusing the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency of withholding ethics documents regarding its chief Scott Pruitt, California’s attorney general on Friday sued the regulator for failing to comply with a Freedom of Information Act request.


Climate Change Wreaking Havoc on Europe’s Flood Season
 August 11, 2017


Florida Uber passenger dies after driver punches him during fight over directions
NEW YORK DAILY NEWS Monday, August 14, 2017, 10:55 AM


Trump’s Pick To Head The FBI Wouldn’t Say Whether He’d Spy on Mosques. The Senate Confirmed Him Anyway.

August 3, 2017 by Chip Gibbons

Should the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) spy on mosques absent probable cause of a crime? Should the FBI participate in the creation of a Muslim registry?  It would seem like answering “no” to both questions should be a prerequisite for being confirmed as FBI director.  Yet, Christopher Wray declined to answer several variations of exactly those two questions and was still confirmed FBI director by a vote of 92 to 5.

Both the FBI and Trump have a troubling intolerance for dissent. Trump during his campaign called for widespread surveillance of mosques and the FBI already has confidential informants crawling throughout the Muslim community. Trump floated the idea of a Muslim registry and the FBI has a dark history of compiling information on people for exercising their First Amendment rights.  As a result, any potential FBI director, especially one handpicked by Trump, needed to face questioning about their willingness to uphold the values of the First Amendment.

Wray did face several questions about his willingness to spy on the Muslim community, though the bulk of them came not during the televised hearing, but as Questions for the Record (QFRs), written questions submitted after the hearing.

Sen. Mazie Hirono (D-Hawaii) asked Wray if as FBI director he would go along with the creation of a Muslim registry. While Wray stated he would be faithful to the law and the Constitution, he said he did not “know enough about the specific proposal or plans that anyone is talking about[…]” to comment definitively. By comparison, when asked about a Muslim registry during his confirmation hearing for Attorney General, Jeff Sessions stated that he opposed a Muslim registry and it would “raise serious constitutional problems.” (In her QFRs, Sen. Hirono indicated that Wray had said during the hearing he would not participate in a Muslim registry, but he plainly stated that he did not know enough to answer the question).

Sen. Patrick Leahy (D-VT) and Sen. Hirono both sent written questions to Wray asking about Trump’s campaign trail calls for surveillance of mosques. Sen. Chris Coons (D-DE) submitted a question about surveillance of houses of worship more broadly. In all three cases, Wray declined to answer stating that he could not speculate about hypotheticals. To be clear, these were not open-ended questions that could be reasonably interpreted to include instances in which a house of worship was in fact involved in some type of criminal activity. Coons specifically asked Wray about surveillances of houses of worship when there is no “probable cause of criminal activity.”  Leahy specifically asked about “general surveillance of mosques unrelated to a specific, ongoing investigation.”


Mass. cop mocks Charlottesville car ramming on Facebook: 'Hahahaha love this'

NEW YORK DAILY NEWS Monday, August 14, 2017, 8:53 AM


Trump calls out Merck’s African-American CEO for protesting President’s silence on white nationalists
NEW YORK DAILY NEWS Updated: Monday, August 14, 2017, 10:14 AM


SEE IT:  Black Charlottesville man, Deandre Harris, viciously beaten with metal poles by white supremacists
NEW YORK DAILY NEWS Monday, August 14, 2017, 10:04 AM


Scientists discover 91 volcanoes below Antarctic ice sheet
This is in addition to 47 already known about and eruption would melt more ice in region affected by climate change


German Bombshell Bestseller Exposing CIA Media Control Blocked in US
Americans are being prevented from reading an important book by a hero who made a huge difference

By Charles Bausman | Russia – Insider | August 10, 2017

Udo Ulfkotte is near and dear to our hearts, because we wrote about him in October of 2014, (Top German Editor: CIA Bribing Journalists) a few weeks after our founding, and these articles were some of our first to go viral, getting hundreds of thousands of views, despite the fact that we were practically unknown.

His book caused a sensation in Germany, was a best-seller despite being completely ignored by the same media he was implicating, and was a major factor in turning German public opinion against the Ukraine war.

Ulfkotte’s book was extraordinary because it named names in the German establishment, a sure-fire path to massive libel lawsuits. We were the first English language publication to write about Ulfkotte, and he gave us an exclusive interview shortly after we ran the above article.

We were in touch with Ulfkotte after writing about him, and followed his story. He told us at the time that he wasn’t afraid of any lawsuits, because he was near death due to complications from gas poisoning he suffered while reporting on the Iran-Iraq war in the 1980s (ironically it was German manufactured gas), another story suppressed in Germany.

Link du jour








Chokehold: policing black men and women in America
US justice is built to humiliate and oppress black men. And it starts with the chokehold
The author of the acclaimed Chokehold: Policing Black Men writes on how the system treats African Americans with contempt: ‘If police patrolled white areas as they do poor black neighborhoods, there would be a revolution’
by Paul Butler


Watchdog Group Wants to Know How FBI Let Comey Walk Out Door With Sensitive Docs

by Rachel Stockman | 3:49 pm, August 11th, 2017


FBI's Next Generation Identification system exempt from Privacy Act
News roundup: The FBI Next Generation Identification biometrics database is exempt from the Privacy Act. Plus, Salesforce fired two top staffers ...


Put to the vote: German nursery where children make the decisions
Dolli Einstein Haus in Pinneberg is run on a democratic basis, with votes on everything from food to nappy changes


A Trump Employee Said He Knew Of Misconduct At The Company. Then He Claimed His Family Was Assaulted
A mother and her young son said they were terrorized by Trump security in 1995, after a family member announced plans to reveal “financial improprieties.”

Posted on August 12, 2017, at 8:00 a.m.


Rowley Police Chief Named President of Big-Deal FBI Alumni Group

By John P. Muldoon - August 11, 2017020


Former Avoyelles Correctional Center warden, wife indicted on fraud charges


August 11, 2017 by admin in LF and IWF Member News

IWF Leadership Foundation Fellow Alumnae Lauren Anderson was featured in Forbes’ Mentoring Moments podcast as one of the first women to ever be on a SWAT team. Read part of the profile below:

“Have you ever been in a situation where your gut is saying, ‘Do it your way,’ but a person with more power or a bigger title is telling you to do it their way? Tune into this episode of Mentoring Moments podcast and find out how Lauren Anderson, former FBI executive stood her ground and handled that dilemma when three men were pointing guns at her!

“Anderson is a fearless ‘first’— She was one of the first women on a SWAT team and the first woman to run the FBI’s office at the American Embassy in Paris in the immediate aftermath of 9/11. She led the FBI’s International Terrorism Investigations and Operations for the New York Office’s Joint Terrorism Task Force, where her teams disrupted numerous terrorist plots. After 29 years at the FBI, Anderson retired in 2012. She continues to redefine power through her work as an international geopolitical consultant, including helping women and youth around the world find their power. The shortlist


The Latest: Witnesses say Kenya police assault journalists


Maine librarians resist federal
Internet "filtering" law
Staff Writer
School and public libraries in Maine stand to lose Internet access funding unless they comply with a new federal law requiring them to "filter" the information patrons may access. The Maine Library Association is the first plaintiff in a suit brought by the American Civil Liberties Union challenging the law's constitutionality on the grounds that it violates First Amendment rights. The American Library Association is preparing to file a separate suit.

The new Child Internet Protection Act requires all school and public libraries using funds made available through the federal universal access program (sometimes called the federal e-rate) to implement a filtering technology and establish a policy that specifies which materials will be unavailable through their computers. Libraries that refuse to do so will be ineligible for public funding. Essentially every school and public library in Maine relies on this public funding - or soon will - and will be affected by the change in law.

The filtering law is part of a sweeping appropriations bill signed in the last days of the Clinton administration, sponsored by Sen. John McCain [R-Arizona]. A December press release from McCain's office quotes the senator: "While schools and libraries across the country increasingly use the Internet as a learning tool, we need to ensure that pervasive obscene and violent material is screened out and that our children are protected. Parents can protect their children from Internet smut at home, but have no control over computers at school. This legislation allows local communities to decide what technology they want to use and what to filter out so that our children's minds aren't polluted. Parents have the right to know that their children are safe from computer smut when they are at school, or the public library." All four members of Maine's congressional delegation voted in favor of the bill package.

Melora Ranney, director of the public library in Winthrop and co-chair of the intellectual freedom committee of the Maine Library Association, said the law violates the American Library Association's Library Bill of Rights, which specifically upholds uncensored access.

Ranney said library patrons have differing needs and should be given respect and privacy to access the information they want. "Looking at a computer should be no different than looking at a book, without someone looking over your shoulder or blocking pages they don't think you should see," she said. Filtering affects all patrons, not only children, and "assumes guilt" on the part of everyone. Furthermore, Ranney said the bill is vague in its language defining obscenity, and filtering softwares are incapable of reliably screening pornographic sites, and some screen out unrelated sites.

"This is a bunch of excuses to control libraries," Ranney said. "These are the same people who are trying to control access to information about gay people, sex education, Harry Potter [for references to witchcraft]. They use the whole obscenity/pornography issue to try and control everything we do."

The federal involvement creates local control issues as well. "This is an affront to our communities," Ranney said. "This is the federal government telling people, 'Your library isn't good enough, your librarians aren't doing a good job, your library trustees can't be trusted to make good decisions.' "

President of the Maine Association of School Libraries Susan Nelson said, "It's pretty upsetting to be portrayed as the bad guys. I can't think of another group that cares more for children than librarians." Nelson said several elementary schools do use Internet filtering and that there is no talk that she is aware of from schools intending to withdraw from the funding program in protest. "It won't be our choice anyway," she said. "School departments are just taking this as a given and trying to decide which software to use."

Filtering software can run several thousand dollars; Nelson said less expensive tools come with strings attached, like advertising or permission to track student data. Decisions on how to provide Internet access are best made on a community by community basis, "rather than slamming the hammer down" on all libraries, she said.

In its recent statement on "Internet Access and Filters," the Maine Library Association took this position: "The Maine Library Association respects the responsibility of all parents/legal guardians to guide their own children's use of the library, its resources and services. The Association recommends that libraries teach responsible and effective use of the Internet through handouts, online guides, training sessions, and Web pages highlighting library recommended sources. In addition, the Association encourages the management of this resource in ways that protect the privacy of Internet users."

For the past six years, public and school libraries in Maine have been Internet-connected courtesy of the Maine School Library Network, with funding that grew out of a telecommunications overcharge in the early 1990s. That funding is coming to an end, and beginning in July, Maine libraries will be almost wholly dependent on federal e-rate support.

The text of the Child Internet Protection Act may be read online at: http://www.cdt.org/legislation/106th/


Brawls erupt as torch-wielding white supremacists march through University of Virginia campus
NEW YORK DAILY NEWS Updated: Saturday, August 12, 2017, 1:22 AM


Whistleblowers play key role in rooting out waste, fraud, abuse
Posted Saturday, August 12, 2017 3:57 pm

The real question is whether the new policy will do anything to address the waste, fraud, and mismanagement which has resulted in what can best be described as the wasteful expenditure of millions of taxpayer dollars at a time when Kentucky is facing a fiscal crisis.”
One could only hope Chief Justice John D. Minton was sincere when he said “transparency and accountability are bedrock principles in maintaining trust in state government.”

More than 30 years after the Kentucky legislature enacted the state’s open records laws, the Kentucky Supreme Court has finally acknowledged that it is not above the law.

The policy overturns years of hiding behind a cloak of secrecy when it came to the operation of the Administrative Office of the Courts. Although Minton should be lauded for the new policy, the real question is whether the new policy will do anything to address the waste, fraud, and mismanagement which has resulted in what can best be described as the wasteful expenditure of millions of taxpayer dollars at a time when Kentucky is facing a fiscal crisis.

So, what was the catalyst for the Kentucky Supreme Court’s enlightened policy of transparency? Could it just be that the revelations set forth in the recent whistleblower lawsuit filed by former employee Scott Brown was ground zero for exposing years of waste, fraud, and mismanagement which lead to the policy change? In the words of former President Barrack Obama, “Often the best source of information about waste, fraud, and abuse in government is an existing government employee committed to public integrity and willing to speak out. Such acts of courage and patriotism, which can sometimes save lives and often save taxpayer dollars, should be encouraged rather than stifled. We need to empower federal [state and local] employees as watchdogs of wrongdoing and partners in performance.”

For those of you who don’t know Scott Brown, Scott had been employed at the Administrative Office of Courts for more than seventeen years. Although Scott had an untarnished record as an employee, once he started reporting waste, fraud, and mismanagement to his supervisors in 2014, those who supervised him decided he had to go. Finally, after more than two years of numerous reports of wrongdoing to his supervisors, a plot was hatched to destroy Scott’s reputation as an excuse to get rid of this troublesome whistleblower. The only sin that his supervisors could uncover against Scott was that he purchased a used vehicle from the Administrative Office of Courts in the same manner as many other employees pursuant to a policy that had been approved by the Director of AOC. Scott’s vehicle purchase was reported to the Attorney General’s office for a criminal investigation and was immediately reported to the press to ensure that Scott would suffer the scorn of his colleagues and the public.

Scott’s treatment and the attempts to destroy his reputation is not unlike the treatment of many whistleblowers. What most do not understand is that the information most whistleblowers report regarding waste, fraud, and mismanagement involves matters which are known to those above them. Also, what most do not understand is that unlike the whistleblower, those set out to destroy the credibility and reputation of a whistleblower have unlimited power and resources necessary to crush the whistleblower. In this case, once Scott filed his lawsuit against the Administrative Office of Courts, a $100,000 legal contract was issued to hire an attorney to fight the charges raised by Scott in his lawsuit. How does this lead to the so-called transparency and accountability announced by Chief Justice Minton? The simple answer is that it doesn’t.

As for Scott and his family, and as a direct result of Scott’s reports of waste, fraud, and mismanagement, Scott has now been terminated from his employment with the Administrative Office of Courts. As a direct result of Scott’s reports of waste, fraud, and mismanagement, Scott and his family will likely suffer the fate of other whistleblowers who have come before him. All that Scott and his family have worked for will be lost and they will likely face financial ruin. What Scott has discovered since he was fired is that it will be difficult, if not impossible, to find suitable employment which will allow him to support his family. In the words of President Obama, instead of being rewarded “for acts of courage and patriotism,” Scott and his family will struggle for years to come and will face an uncertain future which could eventually result in the loss of everything Scott and his family have saved for their retirement.

So, the real question is what can be done to protect whistleblowers like Scott who have the courage to report waste, fraud, and mismanagement? Maybe, just maybe, at least in Scott’s case, it is time for the Kentucky legislature to hold hearings and investigate the spending practices of the Administrative Office of Courts. In the end, what needs to be understood is that money budgeted for the operation of government is not a slush fund for those who oversee the public dollars. The millions of dollars budgeted for the Administrative Office of the Courts should be protected and spent as intended, and those dollars should not be squandered on decorating the Administrative Office of Courts, or for any other project which does not in some way contribute to the efficient operation of Kentucky courts.

It is time to reign in government. It is time to protect whistleblowers. It is time to end the practice of spending public funds to silence whistleblowers. It is time for public officials to be held responsible and reign in wasteful and fraudulent spending.

For those of you who have joined me on my figurative mountaintop before, please help me as I shout to the world, or at least the Kentucky legislature, that it is time to investigate the matters Scott reported regarding waste,

Why forensic scientists are desperate to open a human body farm in the UK
Harley Tamplin for Metro.co.ukSaturday 12 Aug 2017 5:01 pm

Read more: http://metro.co.uk/2017/08/12/why-forensic-scientists-are-desperate-to-open-a-human-body-farm-in-the-uk-6847941/#ixzz4pbnsAfhqw


Posts: 8,240
Reply with quote  #257 

August 17 2017 at 10:45 PM CST



Mexican media is asking hard questions about Barcelona, and how yet another passport was so conveniently found in the van.

The 10:30PM (CST) Diez En Punto (10 En Punto) which airs on Univision and is the most highly regarded Mexican newscast just reported that the Morroccan that is being blamed went to the Moroccan embassy to report his passport stolen, and confirmed that he reported it stolen before the van attack took place. Mexican Media openly stated that it was a frame up, because it is documented that the Morroccan man DID NOT HAVE HIS PASSPORT AT THE TIME OF THE ATTACK.

Diez En Punto then asked the hard question: Since it is proven this guy did not have his passport at the time of the attack, as confirmed by the embassy which did not issue a new one yet and received word directly from him that it was stolen days before the van attack, Mexican media is questioning why on earth the authorities are insisting on saying he was the one who did the attack.

It is then obvious to conclude from what they said, that Barcelona is a proven, sewn up in a body bag intelligence agency fronted false flag that the elite don’t want to let go of, because the authorities know damn well the embassy issued a statement that confirmed he did not even have a passport to leave in any van, – oh so conveniently to follow the script of the miracle passport so perfectly (time and time again) , – yet they are not backing off on their accusations against a now known to be innocent man.
do, because they know that a news broadcast in Mexico is not going to make it to Morocco, and to accomplish an agenda they will murder ANYONE. They are not creative enough to move away from “the perfectly clean passport on top of the ashes”. They will take care of the questions by killing anyone it takes to accomplish it. And what would their agenda for yet another vehicular attack be? FULLY MANDATED SELF DRIVING VEHICLES.


Harvard Physicist: “Climate Science In Serious Trouble”…”Really Dirty People Doing Bad Stuff”
By P Gosselin on 20. August 2017
In a presentation (see below) Harvard astrophysicist Willie Soon came out blasting with both barrels at the corruption in climate science. He started by saying that any respectable scientist would say that the American National Academy of Science (NAS) is “100 percent corrupt” and the climate scientists who put up the content at the NAS  are “really […]

For more about Willie Exon Mobil Soon see



The Soon fallacy

24 February 2015
As many will have read, there were a number of press reports (NYT, Guardian, InsideClimate) about the non-disclosure of Willie Soon’s corporate funding (from Southern Company (an energy utility), Koch Industries, etc.) when publishing results in journals that require such disclosures. There are certainly some interesting questions to be asked (by the OIG!) about adherence to the Smithsonian’s ethics policies, and the propriety of Smithsonian managers accepting soft money with non-disclosure clauses attached.

However, a valid question is whether the science that arose from these funds is any good? It’s certainly conceivable that Soon’s work was too radical for standard federal research programs and that these energy companies were really taking a chance on blue-sky high risk research that might have the potential to shake things up. In such a case, someone might be tempted to overlook the ethical lapses and conflicts of interest for the sake of scientific advancement (though far too many similar post-hoc justifications have been used to excuse horrific unethical practices for this to be remotely defendable).

Unfortunately, the evidence from the emails and the work itself completely undermines that argument because the work and the motivation behind it are based on a scientific fallacy.

Putting aside papers where Soon was only a minor contributing author, and the hopelessly slanted ‘forecasting principles’ papers with Green and Armstrong (see here for why they add nothing to the discussion), most of Soon’s work has been related to finding correlations of a very specific solar reconstruction (see figure below) to some observational time-series. There are very real criticisms that can be made of the solar forcing time-series he uses, and of course, of the cherry picking of specific time-series without mentioning that correlations to others (such as the global mean) are very low, but even accepting all that, there is a much more fundamental problem.

It is most succinctly highlighted in an article Soon wrote ‘It’s the Sun, stupid’ (not sure if it was ever really published anywhere, but he did send it to his contacts at Koch Industries). Towards the end he states:

The evidence in my paper is consistent with the hypothesis that the Sun causes climatic change in the Arctic.

It invalidates the hypothesis that CO2 is a major cause of observed climate change – and raises serious questions about the wisdom of imposing cap-and-trade or other policies that would cripple energy production and economic activity, in the name of “preventing catastrophic climate change.”

It is the leap from the first to second sentence that drives Soon’s research – the notion that if you can find enough correlations to solar forcing, the impact of CO2 must be diminished, if not obliterated altogether. But this is a fallacy. It is equivalent to arguing that if total caloric intake correlates to weight, that exercise can have no effect, or that if cloudiness correlates to incident solar radiation at the ground, then seasonal variations in sunshine are zero. The existence of one physical factor affecting a variable in a complex system says nothing whatsoever about the potential for another physical factor to affect that same variable.

Even if the correlations existed at the level Soon claims (and they don’t – see figure), it would still not indicate that CO2 had zero effect, and indeed, it could never do so. The impacts of CO2 on radiative transfer have been studied since the 1860s, and modern spectroscopic databases date to Air Force calculations for heat seeking missiles in the 1950s and have been validated by an enormous number of observations, both in situ and via remote sensing. The vertical fingerprint of the impact of increasing CO2 (warming troposphere, cooling stratosphere) was calculated in 1967 by Manabe and Wetherald, decades before it was observed. None of this science disappears because a regional temperature series correlates for some short time with something else.

Figure 1. Updating the Soon (2005) correlations by correcting for an obsolete and almost certainly incorrect solar reconstruction (replacing with the SORCE reconstruction) and extending the temperature data to the present, shows an almost complete collapse of the initially impressive correlation (click for larger version).
The only way this might even begin to make sense would be if attribution of recent global warming was based purely on a linear regression of temperature to CO2 (which it isn’t). Given that we know there are multiple drivers of climate operating (the sun for sure, but also volcanoes, aerosols, greenhouse gas changes, land use change, etc.) the only way to do attribution properly is calculate the physical fingerprints of each of these drivers across multiple variables and see which combinations provide the best fits. Indeed, this is indeed exactly what is done. This kind of attribution is not based on single-factor correlations and is even robust to errors of magnitude in the calculated responses.

Soon’s work has been singularly poor for over a decade, first coming to prominence with the Soon and Baliunas (2003) debacle in Climatic Research which led to the resignation of 5 editors in protest at the way the paper was handled (and see more here). Another case associated with some very obvious shenanigans was Dyck et al (2007). More recently, his presentations at Heartland’s pseudo-climate conferences have come under renewed scrutiny for their level of incoherence.

The odd thing about this is that there is real, and interesting, science to be done on the impacts of solar forcing on climate. The chemical feedbacks due to photolytic reactions in both the stratosphere and troposphere involving ozone, NOx, and water vapour, can have significant impacts. Exploring the tremendous complexities in aerosol formation and growth and impacts on clouds and whether that is mediated by modulations of cosmic rays is fascinating (if, as yet, inconclusive). Indeed, there is a current NASA call for proposals on exactly these subjects (Notice of Intent due March 13!). But every time another one of these spurious correlations is touted, or one more fallaciously reasoned argument is put forward, it makes it harder for serious scientists to get involved at all without being tarred with the same pseudo-scientific brush.

Moving on from this low-quality, pointless kind of solar forcing shtick can’t come ‘Soon’ enough.

 W.W. Soon, "Solar Arctic-Mediated Climate Variation on Multidecadal to Centennial Timescales: Empirical Evidence, Mechanistic Explanation, and Testable Consequences", Physical Geography, vol. 30, pp. 144-184, 2009. http://dx.doi.org/10.2747/0272-3646.30.2.144
 S. Manabe, and R.T. Wetherald, "Thermal Equilibrium of the Atmosphere with a Given Distribution of Relative Humidity", Journal of the Atmospheric Sciences, vol. 24, pp. 241-259, 1967. http://dx.doi.org/10.1175/1520-0469(1967)024<0241:TEOTAW>2.0.CO;2
 W.W. Soon, "Variable solar irradiance as a plausible agent for multidecadal variations in the Arctic-wide surface air temperature record of the past 130 years", Geophysical Research Letters, vol. 32, 2005. http://dx.doi.org/10.1029/2005GL023429


Exclusive: Secret Service depletes funds to pay agents because of Trump's frequent travel, large family
Kevin Johnson, USA TODAY Published 5:00 a.m. ET Aug. 21, 2017 | Updated 9:31 a.m. ET Aug. 21, 2017


Liberty University graduates return diplomas because of support for Trump by Jerry Falwell Jr.


Trump’s Mar-a-Lago Club loses its ninth big charity event this week


Ex-neo Nazi says Trump revoked federal grant Obama gave his organization to fight hate

 Sunday, August 20, 2017, 9:38 PM


ANTIFA Plan Nationwide Riots On Nov. 4th To Forcibly Remove Trump
August 18, 2017 Sean Adl-Tabatabai News, US 119


Camille Delivers for Silent Cal

 August 18, 2017

“I love Vermont because of her hills and valleys, her scenery and invigorating climate, but most of all because of her indomitable people. They are a race of pioneers who have almost beggared themselves to serve others. If the spirit of liberty should vanish in other parts of the Union, and support of our institutions should languish, it could all be replenished from the generous store held by the people of this brave little state of Vermont.”

President Calvin Coolidge loosened up in that speech after Vermont’s Great Flood of 1927. Vermonters are still like that, where folks in Guilford have stood up and reached down to help a hometown girl go to college.

A midwife attended Camille’s birth in 1999 on the side of a mountain.

“The only light was from the dozens of candles lining the walls,” Camille wrote in her college application. “I grew up off the grid: without internet, a refrigerator, a conventional toilet, a microwave, a washing machine, a dishwasher, or a television. I grew up on a hard-to-reach, rocky dirt road with home-grown food, a woodstove and a forest for my backyard.

“My family values the importance of being unified with the Earth, acquiring the skills to live off of the land, and being environmentally aware. Growing up, I spent my time in the woods carving sticks, making fairy houses, and playing in streams while my friends sat on their couches with their eyes glued to their screens, mesmerized. Mine was a drastically different experience compared to the average American girl.”

When she got to middle school, Camille was embarrassed to ask her friends over to her house way off the side of a side road. So she rebelled, as she explains in her beautiful essay. Now she understands it all — she is far more mature than I was at 18. Hell, she’s more mature than I was at 30.

“I can now confidently assert who I am and form my own opinions without fear of being judged or ridiculed,” she wrote in her essay for Hobart and William Smith College in Upstate New York. “I’ve grown to appreciate all I had taken for granted in my younger years; living close to the land, loving natural beauty, and the joy of living a more simple life.”

But going to college costs a lot of money. Camille works part-time at the Guilford Country Store, as does her mom. Her dad, Elliot, is a self-employed carpenter. He built the house where the family has lived since 1990.

“The first place he built was our place,” Camille’s mom Elise said.

“And I didn’t know a thing,” Elliot said. “And it shows.”

Camille grew up in the house her dad built, which began as a 24-by-17-foot camp. They raised goats, rabbits and chickens, and always planted a big garden.

The Country Store itself is a product of Guilford’s indomitable people. Fifteen years ago it was a rattletrap wreck of empty shelves. Then folks got together in 2004 and founded Friends of Algiers, named for the little cluster of buildings at the crossroads.

“Country stores statewide were going out of business, that had formerly been a center of the community,” said Eric Morse, with the Friends of Algiers.

In the blink of an eye — Vermont time — Eric and Barry and Fred and other Friends raised the money to rehabilitate the 200-year-old Country Store and get it listed on the National Register of Historical Places. Guilford pitched in to rehabilitate two more dilapidated sites across the road, which now host 31 modern apartments.

Senator Patrick Leahy corralled the last $450,000 for a water line, then Suzanne and Mark Tessitore, refugee caterers from New York City’s Lower East Side, stepped and turned the Country Store back into what Vermont country stores have been all along: a place for philosophers to meet and hold forth over coffee.

“It’s worked out pretty well,” said Morse, whose land surveying office is kitty corner and a hop away. “Local kids work there. Everybody goes there. It was really pretty inspiring. I love that store.”

Camille is one of those local kids, the youngest of four. Her parents added rooms to the house as the kids came along. She’s leaving for college on Saturday, where her orientation session at Hobart will include a five-day hike in the Adirondacks.

“I could tell it was all she wanted,” her mom said over coffee at the Country Store. “She was a force to be reckoned with. She was: ‘I am doing this.’”

I think she deserves it, after making the National Honor Society, and volunteering at a summer camp for emotionally disturbed children, and four years on the Student Council, and joining the Spanish Club, three years on the tennis team … and so on.

Hobart offered her a generous scholarship. But after the scholarship, grants, and maxing out federal loans, Camille was $7,500 short. So friends set up a website for her on GoFundMe, to help send Camille to college.

In one month they’ve raised $5,000, from a town of 2,000 people.

What a great family, in a great town, in a great state.

Here is Camille’s GoFundMe website.

(Courthouse News photos show Camille taking a break at the Guilford County Store, and with her parents, Elliot and Elise Gunzburg.)


Ohio judge ambushed and shot at courthouse; one suspect dead  
NEW YORK DAILY NEWS Monday, August 21, 2017, 9:39 AM


Informant’s new book ‘Confidential Source 96’ reveals how he made a career of taking down drug crews

NEW YORK DAILY NEWS Sunday, August 20, 2017, 11:17 PM

Link du jour







Research Finds Justifiable Homicide Rulings More Likely to Benefit White Americans


NYPD officer accused of punching bystander for no reason during Bronx shooting investigation

Police investigating a Bronx shooting earlier this month punched a bystander three times in the face, according to video obtained by the Daily News.

Kevin Pettiway told The News he was minding his own business just before getting punched and arrested — disputing NYPD claims that he was busted for hindering their investigation into the shooting of two 17-year-old boys.

Pettiway, 28, said he was heading toward his mother’s Webster Ave. apartment Aug. 5 when he noticed a ruckus involving a crowd of onlookers and NYPD officers.

“I didn’t know what the commotion was about. I was trying to get past the crowd when an officer pushed me,” Pettiway said.

Five shot, one fatally, in four-borough swell of gun violence
A portion of the incident was caught on a 30-second cell phone video and appears to contradict the officer’s account, which was detailed in a court document.

Pettiway is seen in the video wearing a white tank top and walking by the shouting crowd when an officer in a dark T-shirt and khaki shorts pulled him in the opposite direction. Pettiway turned to face the plainclothes officer — identified in court documents as Lt. Eric Dym of Public Service Area 7 — to ask why he’d been pushed. He was met with three blows to the face, the video shows.
“I understand that he was probably frustrated because he was trying to control the crowd, but I was just walking. I didn’t say anything to him for him to push me and punch me like that,” Pettiway said.

Dym has been named in five federal civil rights lawsuits between 2011 and 2015 for claims of excessive force and false arrest, according to court documents. Three of the lawsuits settled for a total of $202,000, court records show.


“Dick Gregory was such a powerful opponent against systematic racism, J. Edgar Hoover once ordered the FBI to use the mafia to murder him,” tweeted activist Tariq Nasheed about social activist Dick Gregory on August 20.


Albuquerque Cops Accused of Negligence in Little Girl’s Murder

August 18, 2017


Romanian Bishop Involved in Sex Tape Scandal Resigns

A Romanian bishop who was seen on video engaging in sexual acts with a male student resigned Friday, the Romanian Orthodox Church said.


Selection Process Winding Down for Monitor of Justice Dept. Consent Decree with Baltimore Police
by: Stephen Janis Special to the AFRO  / (Courtesy Images/Logos) /  August 19, 2017 0 39


Barcelona, Manchester, Berlin, Paris, Nice, London, New York: Passports and IDs Mysteriously Discovered in the Wake of Terror Attacks

By Prof Michel Chossudovsky
Global Research, August 20 2017

This article reviews the “mysterious” phenomenon of IDs and Passports of terror suspects routinely discovered (often in the rubble) in the wake of a terrorist attack.

In most cases the alleged suspect was known to the authorities.

Is there a pattern?  The ID papers of the suspect are often left behind, discovered by police in the wake of a terrorist attack.


Reports concerning the Barcelona attack, reveal exactly the same feature of passports and IDs left behind which occurred in Manchester, Paris, Nice, London, New York, and now Barcelona (August 17, 2017) (see below).

A Spanish passport of “a person of Moroccan origin was found at the scene of the attack” according to Britain’s Daily Express.  The Spanish media reports confirm that the suspect is Spanish from the autonomous city of Melilla which has borders with Morocco. Police sources state that his identity is being used in the investigation.

The reports are notoriously contradictory: the latest Telegraph report (18/08/17) suggests that the suspect who was driving the van is 18 years old by the Name of Moussa Oukabir, and that his brother is Driss Oukabir, 28 years old and that it was his brother who rented the vehicle.

Earlier reports by El País  (August 17) stated that the alleged suspect 28-year-old Driss Oukabir, had been arrested by the Police, while El Nacional reported that the suspect:

“presented himself at a Catalan police station in Ripoll to deny having any involvement in this afternoon’s attack. He claims his ID was stolen and used by the terrorists to rent one of the vans used for the attack.

Local sources, confirmed by the town’s mayor, Jordi Munell, have said that the young man, who lives in Ripoll, attended the police station to deny any involvement in the events” (Daily Express, August 17, 2017)

The report below suggests that the passport discovered in the van provided a lead to “the Alcanar house where bombs were being prepared”. Allegedly the passport was found in the van used for the attack in “an accidental explosion that took place on Thursday morning in the town of Tarraconense.  This finding allowed linking the terrorist attack in Barcelona with a wounded in the Alcanar accident”.

Source El Diario

Michel Chossudosky, August 18, 2017

Text of earlier article published by Global Research on May 17, 2017 in the wake of the Manchester attack

This article reviews the “mysterious” phenomenon of IDs and Passports of terror suspects routinely discovered (often in the rubble) in the wake of a terrorist attack.

In most cases the alleged suspect was known to the authorities.

Is there a pattern?  The ID papers of the suspect are often left behind, discovered by police in the wake of a terrorist attack.

According to government and media reports, the suspects are without exception linked to an Al Qaeda affiliated entity.   

None of these terror suspects survived. Dead men do not talk.

In the case of the tragic events in Manchester, the bankcard of the alleged suicide bomber Salman Abedi was found in his pocket in the wake of the explosion.

Legitimacy of the official stories? The UK is both a “victim of terrorism” as well as a “State sponsor of terrorism”. Without exception, the governments of  Western countries which are victims of terror attacks, have supported, directly or indirectly, the Al Qaeda group of terrorist organizations including the Islamic State (ISIS), which are allegedly responsible for waging these terror attacks. Amply documented Al Qaeda is a creation of the CIA.

Below is a review of the circumstances and evidence pertaining to passports and IDs discovered in the wake of selected terror attacks, with links to Global Research articles and media reports (2001-2017). (This list is by no means exhaustive)

From NYC on 9/11 to Manchester, May 2017

In reverse chronological order

emphasis added

The Manchester Terror Attack,  May 2017.

Manchester Bomb Suspect Said to Have Had Ties to al Qaeda …

NBCNews.com–May 23, 2017 MANCHESTER, England — Salman Abedi, the 22-year-old British man … in a suicide-bomb attack, had ties to al Qaeda and had received terrorist training … was identified by a bank card found in his pocket at the scene of the ...

Manchester Attack as MI6 Blowback?

By Evan Jones, May 26, 2017

“A bankcard has been conveniently found in the pocket of the … Daesh has claimed responsibility for the Manchester attack, but without …”

No image of the alleged bankcard is available.

Ironically, the suspect Abedi was first identified by Washington rather than UK police and security. How did they know who was the culprit 3 hours after the explosion? According to Graham Vanbergen:

In the early hours of the morning of the 23rd May – approximately 02.35BST   NDTV via the Washington Post stated quite categorically that:

“U.S. officials, speaking on the condition of anonymity, identified the assailant as Salman Abedi. They did not provide information about his age or nationality, and British officials declined to comment on the suspect’s identity.”

This was published at a time when British police and security services were refusing to make any statements as to who they thought the perpetrators were because at the time, they were dealing with the immediate aftermath of the event.

Berlin Truck Terror Attack, December 2016.

The Berlin Truck Terror Suspect and the Curious Matter of ID Papers Left Behind

By WhoWhatWhy, December 22, 2016

The Berlin Truck Terror Suspect and the Curious Matter of ID Papers Left Behind. By WhoWhatWhy. Global Research, December 22, 2016. Who What Why 21 ….:

The suspect’s identity papers were found inside the truck used in Monday’s attack on a Christmas market, which left 12 people dead, German security officials said.

The suspect was known to German security services as someone in contact with radical Islamist groups, and had been assessed as posing a risk, Interior Minister of North Rhine-Westphalia Ralf Jaeger told reporters.

Berlin Truck Attack

Source: Daily Mail, July 15, 2016

The Nice Terror Attack July 2016

The Nice Terror Attack: Towards a Permanent State of Martial Law in … the alleged perpetrator is dead and conveniently left behind his ID.

Nice, 14th of July Massacre: Towards Martial Law? The Islamic State (ISIS-Daesh) Claims Responsibility?

By Peter Koenig, July 15, 2016

According to Peter Koenig in relation to the Nice terror attack:

During last night’s celebration of the French National Holiday, around 11 PM, a speeding truck plowed into a crowd of thousands who were watching the fireworks along the Mediterranean Boulevard Anglais. The driver of the truck, was simultaneously and  indiscriminately shooting into the crowd. He was able to run for 2 kilometers before being stopped by police, which instantly shot and killed him.

A horrendous terror attack, killing hordes of people, spreading pain, misery, fear and outrage in France, Europe – the world over.All indications signal the Big Script of yet another false flag; yet again in France.

The young truck-driver was identified as a 31-year-old Frenchman, resident of Nizza, with Tunisian origins. As in previous cases, ‘coincidence’ has it that his identity papers were found in the truck.

The young man is instantly killed by the police. Dead people cannot talk. A pattern well known by now.

Paris Charlie Hebdo Terror Attack, January 2015

Police found the ID of Said Kouachi at the Scene of the Charlie Hebdo Shooting. Does this Sound Familiar?

By Dr. Paul Craig Roberts, January 10, 2015  

“According to news reports, police found the ID of Said Kouachi at the scene of the Charlie Hebdo shooting. Does this sound familiar? Remember, authorities claimed to have found the undamaged passport of one of the alleged 9/11 hijackers among the massive pulverized ruins of the twin towers.”

Paris Bataclan Terror Attack, November 2015

The Paris Terror Attacks and 911: Similar “Evidence” Makes it Suspicious

By Timothy Alexander Guzman, November 20, 2015

The Islamic State (ISIS/ISIL) declared that it was responsible for the latest attacks in Paris as did Al-Qaeda who also claimed responsibility for 911. … However, there are similarities between the terror attacks in Paris and New York City on September 11th.

First, Syrian and Egyptian passports from two of the suicide bombers were found at the scene of the stadium attack in the northern part of the city. After both suspected terrorists detonated their explosive devices, their passports were still found.

This brings us back to the September 11th terror attacks where U.S. officials recovered a passport intact a few blocks from t
he World Trade Center which did belong to one of the hijackers,

Magic Passports Redux: Syrian Passport Allegedly Discovered on Paris Suicide Bomber

By 21st Century Wire, November 14, 2015

In the context of the enquiry about the Paris massacres, a Syrian passport (image right) was found next to one of the kamikaze bombers of Stade de France. After being pointed out as responsible for the attacks by President Hollande, ‘the Islamic State’ claimed that they had engineered the onslaught. The French executive, that had already stated tht they wanted to take action in Syria allegedly against ISIS, but actually against Bachar El Assad, who ‘has to go’, sees in this a significant clue that comfort their military expedition.

London 7/7 Terror attack, July 7, 200

The 7/7 London Bombings and MI5’s “Stepford Four” Operation: How the 2005 London Bombings Turned every Muslim into a “Terror Suspect”

By Karin Brothers, May 26, 2017

On Tuesday, July 12th, Lindsay’s wife Samantha Lewthwaite had called police to report her husband Germaine (“Jamal”) missing.  Police searched their home immediately. The next day, on July 14th, police announced that they had Lindsay’s ID and he was the fourth bomber. Lewthwaite was incredulous and refused to believe the accusation without DNA proof.  The police identification was stunning because they had been claiming that all of the suspects looked Pakistani; there was no way anyone could mistake the big, black Lindsay for an Asian. What had police been looking at?

9/11 Terror Attacks: September 11, 2001

Was America Attacked by Muslims on 9/11?

By David Ray Griffin, September 11, 2016

9/11 Truth and the Joint Congressional Inquiry: 28 Pages of Misdirection on the Role of Saudi Arabia

By Dick Atlee and Ken Freeland, September 11, 2015

For years the 9/11 Truth movement (9TM) has been vainly pleading with ….. FBI agent Dan Coleman explains how the passport of 9/11 hijacker …

9/11 Contradictions: Mohamed Atta’s Mitsubishi and His Luggage

By David Ray Griffin, May 09, 2008

9/11 Contradictions: Mohamed Atta’s Mitsubishi and His Luggage … It also contained a Saudi passport, an international driver’s license, …

“In the official version for 9/11 the FBI claimed that they found the unscathed passport of one of the pilots near one of the towers that were reduced to ashes by explosions whose heat melted even the steel columns in the buildings’ structure. The fourth plane’s crash near Shanksville also yielded a passport which, though scorched, still made it possible to read the person’s first name and surname and to see his ID photo. This is all the more disturbing as nothing at all was left in the crater, no part of the plane or of the people travelling in it, only this partly scorched passport.

Confirmed by Dan Rather CBS News, “a passerby found the passport of one of the hijackers” on the street just hours after the 9/11 attacks. (Video at 1′.23″)

According to Who What Why:

The Visa of Satam al-Suqami: This identify document of one of the alleged 9/11 hijackers somehow survived unscathed a few blocks from the twin towers, though the plane itself was virtually obliterated.

Visa belonging to Satam al-Suqami

Visa belonging to Satam al-Suqami

The Passports belonging to Ziad Jarrah and Saeed al-Ghamdi: The passports of two alleged hijackers of United Airlines Flight 93 supposedly survived the fiery crash in Pennsylvania that left the aircraft itself charred and widely scattered—with one passport entirely intact.

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Here's What J. Edgar Hoover Called "Fake News"

Aug 30 2017, 12:15pm

FBI officials have long watched journalists who pissed them off.

Long before President Donald Trump coined the term "fake news," disparaged the New York Times, the Washington Post, and CNN, or declared a war on the media, there was a dogged reporter named Ben Bagdikian (above), who rattled the Nixon White House and landed on FBI director J. Edgar Hoover's enemies list.

Bagdikian, who died in March 2016 at the age of 96, was the dean of the journalism school at the University of California, Berkeley, and an Armenian American journalist and author who was probably best known as the reporter who obtained a copy of the Pentagon Papers about America's secret role in the Vietnam War—the greatest and most important leak in US history—and advocated publishing it in the Washington Post to his editor, Ben Bradlee.

After his death, I filed a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request with the FBI to see if the bureau had any documents on Bagdikian, given his place in history. Sure enough, a year later the bureau sent me its file on the muckraker: nearly 200 pages, spanning more than two decades.

The FBI first opened a file on Bagdikian in 1951, digging for dirt on him simply because his reporting pissed them off. More than half a century later, the Trump administration has threatened to do the same thing to journalists who dare write critically of the president and his family. The files underscore that as Trump openly battles with the Fourth Estate, the venom he spews, while alarming, is not unique.

What initially set off Hoover and the FBI was a series of stories Bagdikian published in the Washington Star titled "What Price Security" that was about—wait for it—Russia and communist sympathizers. Specifically, Bagdikian condemned a government program to issue "loyalty checks" to employees in order to ensure "hostile agents and unreliable citizens" were not infiltrating it.

1. After Bagdikian's series was published, an FBI Special Agent in Charge (SAC) from the Boston field office (Bagdikian was a former Massachusetts resident) sent a memo to "Director, FBI" (Hoover), informing him about the status of a criminal search for records on Bagdikian. The term "ReBulet" on this page means "Referring to previous Bureau Letter." The memo notes that the FBI's Boston office did not have any records on Bagdikian, so the FBI went a step further and looked up Bagdikian's credit report, which is illegal without a warrant. The agent noted that Bagdikian's "credit record was favorable and his character and habits were recorded as good."

2. There's a saying that goes, "If you are pissing people off, you know you are doing something right." This May 23, 1961, letter to "Mr. DeLoach" (Cartha DeLoach, who went on to become Hoover's top aide and the FBI's liaison to the White House) from FBI agent D.C. Morrell, is evidence Bagdikian was doing something right. Apparently, the bureau was not happy with Bagdikian's article in the Providence Journal-Bulletin marking Hoover's 37th anniversary running the agency. Morrell noted that Bagdikian's story "made a number of snide comments relative to the FBI and to Mr. Hoover." Hoover's response? "See that Bagdikian is not on our mailing lists and gets no cooperation." (I doubt Bagdikian depended upon access for his reporting.) The memo then highlights the FBI's troubled relationship with the Journal-Bulletin due to "vicious" editorials that took the FBI to task for being, in Agent Morrell's words, "almost immune to the traditional process of checks and balances," notably regarding its confidential informant program. The memo has some parallels to news stories that were published about the agency in the last ten years.

3. On July 20, 1967, DeLoach sent a letter to Mildred Stegall, one of President Lyndon B. Johnson's closest aides. Apparently, she'd requested an FBI records check on Bagdikian and the editor of the Riverside Press-Enterprise in California. By this time, Bagdikian was a contributor to the Saturday Evening Post. It's unclear from the documents why Stegall wanted background information on Bagdikian, but DeLoach informed her the FBI had nothing derogatory. He did, however, alert her to the series of articles Bagdikian had published 12 years prior, "which were critical of several phases of loyalty investigations concerning government employees."

4. It wasn't just the government that was alarmed by Bagdikian's reporting; his readers were, too. In fact, in 1964, one reader from Kentucky wrote a letter to Hoover after Bagdikian reported that communists were feeding hungry citizens in his state. "It is not my intention to overlook a rumor that suggests Communists are at work in Kentucky and to add insult to injury feeding our people."

5. Hoover personally responded to the author of the letter, whose name was withheld, stating, "Although I would like to be of service to you, information contained in the files of the FBI must be maintained as confidential in accordance with regulations of the Department of Justice and is available for official use only." A footnote to the letter that was for internal use only says, "Correspondent [the reader] is not identifiable in Bufiles [bureau files]." That means the FBI checked to see if there were any records on the reader. The footnote further states, "Ben Haig Bagdikian is well known in Bufiles as a writer who has criticized the FBI in the past. He has made snide remarks relative to Mr. Hoover and some of his work has been described [specifically, by Hoover] as 'utter bunk.'" ("Fake news" in today's parlance.)


Lawyers in East Bay corruption case see racial profiling in FBI stings

August  30, 2017 Updated: August 30, 2017 6:00am


The attorneys for two Oakland contractors charged with bid rigging in an offshoot of the FBI investigations that netted former state Sen. Leland Yee and Chinatown gangster Raymond “Shrimp Boy” Chow are accusing the FBI of conducting a decadelong campaign to entrap African Americans in and out of office in crimes that the agency itself created.

In a court filing this week, the attorneys said the FBI used a “well-paid contract employee” who went by the name William Joseph to “travel around the country and tell racially charged lies to African American citizens and public officials in an effort to entrap those officials into participating in government sting operations.”

The court filing doesn’t name the agent, but in an unusual move states that, “If one simply googles the phrase ‘Possible Government Witness Has Criminal History,’ a photo of the agent, along with his true name” appears.

What pops up is a news story from a Baton Rouge, La., TV station about a “private citizen” who was paid $547,000 by the FBI from 2006 to 2010 to take part in stings in Louisiana and elsewhere. (The “criminal history” refers to another figure involved in the Louisiana case, not Joseph.)

Dennis Riordan, who made the filing in U.S. District Court in San Francisco along with fellow attorney Martha Boersch, a former federal prosecutor, said they’ve determined that the private citizen was Joseph and that most of the sting targets were, like Joseph, African American.

 Berkeley Mayor Jesse Arreguin poses for photos in his office while being interviewed in Berkeley, Calif., Monday, Aug. 28, 2017. An anti-hate rally on Sunday was disrupted when scores of anarchists wearing black clothing and masks stormed the demonstration in Berkeley and attacked several supporters of President Donald Trump. But police were able to head off any wider violence. (AP Photo/Jeff Chiu) After melees, Berkeley mayor asks Cal to cancel right-wing Free Oakland Athletics' fans stand during National Anthem before A's defeated the Detroit Tigers 8-6 during MLB game at Oakland Coliseum in Oakland, Calif., on Sunday, May 7, 2017. Barbara Boxer’s advice for A’s: Dump Coliseum site A BART rider crosses a platform at the Fruitvale station on Friday, Aug. 4, 2017, in Oakland, Calif. BART defends practice of free rides for workers, families
“It’s a classic case of racial profiling,” Riordan said.

Riordan and Boersch are seeking to have their clients, Oakland construction company executives Len Turner and his brother, Lance Turner, tried separately from six other defendants charged in the case of alleged bid rigging and bribery. The case involves construction contracts at the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory and two facilities operated by the state Department of Veterans Affairs.

To back up their charge that the FBI was targeting blacks in the Bay Area, Riordan and Boersch cite the “unsuccessful effort to entrap four African American city council persons in 2013, two in San Francisco and two in Oakland.”

We first reported in April 2014 that an FBI operative posing as an Atlanta developer named William Joseph had met with San Francisco Supervisors London Breed and Malia Cohen — and later with Oakland City Council members Larry Reid and Lynette Gibson McElhaney — claiming to be flush with cash and looking to do business deals. All four officeholders are African American.

The undercover operative expressed interest in doing everything from rehab work for Section 8 housing in San Francisco to building a five-star hotel near the Coliseum complex in Oakland, the officials told us.

Nothing came of the meetings, and none of the officials was accused of wrongdoing.

However, earlier this year, the feds announced indictments against eight defendants in the East Bay — six of whom, including the Turner brothers, are black — who were caught in an FBI sting operation in which Joseph played a key role.

According to an indictment, the Turners engaged in bid rigging for a 2014 contract to renovate a Department of Energy-owned building at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory. The Turners allegedly were aided in the scheme by Reid’s son, Taj Reid.

He and the Turners allegedly colluded with a “developer” — the FBI’s operative — willing to pay bribes. The Turners are accused of agreeing to submit a higher bid so the developer could secure the contract with a lower bid.

Separately, Taj Reid and Eric Worthen, a onetime aide to Yee who later became an assistant deputy secretary at the state Department of Veterans Affairs, allegedly accepted $12,000 in bribes from Joseph in exchange for helping him obtain construction contracts at a pair of veterans homes in Southern California.

The Turner brothers, Taj Reid and the other five defendants have all pleaded not guilty.

Asked to respond to the racial-profiling allegations, a spokesman for the FBI in San Francisco said only that the agency “does not target individuals based on race” and referred us to the U.S. attorney’s office for further comment.

Office spokesman Abraham Simmons said federal prosecutors “look forward to addressing the allegations in court” and declined further comment.

Joseph and an undercover FBI agent identified as Mike King helped win federal convictions in 2015 of Yee, for taking bribes in exchange for votes, and former San Francisco school board President Keith Jackson, for helping to set up the bribery scheme and take payoffs himself to traffic in guns and drugs and arrange a supposed murder for hire.

Joseph and King were also part of the case against Chow, who was sentenced to life in prison last year for racketeering and murder.

And both have figured in an attempted bribery case that San Francisco District Attorney George Gascón has brought against against Jackson and former city Human Rights Commission member Nazly Mohajer and former agency employee


Turner leans on LaRouche fans

January 29, 2009
City Councillor Chuck Turner has made a move that has some of his most ardent supporters groaning. While Sen. Dianne Wilkerson was admitting to the Boston Globe that she took some $70,000 in off-the-books cash donations, and while House leader Sal DiMasi was signaling his intention to resign amidst a swarming influence-peddling investigation, Turner - accused by the FBI of extorting and accepting a $1,000 bribe - was meeting with a previously-undisclosed branch of his faithful, the Lyndon LaRouche Movement.

The LaRouchies, as they are often referred to by other radical political groups, can often be seen near Winter Street adjacent to Boston Common or at the entrance to political events such as the inauguration celebration at the Strand Theatre last Tuesday. They hand out flyers and books with titles like "Children of Satan" and "Your Enemy George Soros," which are treatises - essentially - on how a media-military-industrial-complex conspiracy led by the "British financial oligarchy" is working to lower the world's population, among other things.

Many elected officials, organizations, and journalists say the movement's leader, Lyndon LaRouche, is a conspiracy theorist and an anti-Semite (using the term "British," for instance, as code for "Zionist"). For his part, LaRouche has denounced anti-Semitism in his writings and is often referred to by his followers as the greatest living economist.

The LaRouche Movement has been called by many a cult that tries to persuade college students to drop out and go to work for the organization. At the very least, LaRouche is a highly controversial figure who has bounced around in far-left and far-right radical political circles his entire life.

"I've had conversations with them going back into the '80s," said Turner last Saturday after a LaRouche Political Action Committee meeting that was called to support him and discuss the history of the FBI's alleged prosecution of black political leaders. "Do I agree with all of their perspectives? No. The LaRouche organization has a lot of baggage that it comes with in the public media. But the reality is, if you're looking for certain information, I think their website and their magazines are a good source."

Turner toting around a LaRouche book entitled, "The End of Our Delusion; Prolegema for A Democratic Party Platform" said he has turned to the LaRouchies in the past for their economic analyses. But Saturday's meeting was clearly aimed at helping Turner by linking the charges against him to a version of history that has the FBI routinely targeting black political officials.

Speaking after the councillor at the Radisson Hotel in downtown Boston to a crowd of around 100 that laughed at his every joke and clapped hands together each time he finished a thought, Harley Schlanger, LaRouche PAC's Western States spokesman, tied the charges against Turner and Wilkerson to "Fruhmenschen," an alleged FBI conspiracy against black political leaders that Schlanger claimed was launched in 1950s by then-FBI Director J. Edgar Hoover. "Fruhmenschen" is a German word meaning early or primitive man.

"Hoover deployed the FBI on the idea that if you led black people into office they would be corrupted. Years later, nothing's changed," said Schlanger, before launching into a speech that addressed everything from the possibility that George W. Bush planned 9/11 to deriding the end of the Bretton Woods era 0 an international monetary management system set up after World War II.

With Turner and Schlanger's oratory, the meeting lasted nearly three hours. Said Schlanger: "He needs our support and we're going to give it to him.

Unlike COINTELPRO, an oft-cited FBI operation that targeted radical organizations in the 1960s, dozens of released FBI documents belie the existence of a "Fruhmenschen" initiative. LaRouche is also focused on the ideas of Franklin D. Roosevelt, who helped set up the Bretton Woods conference and who is credited with turning the U.S. economy around after the Great Depression and duringWorld War II.

Now, in a sign of the times, Schlanger said his organization is not criticizing but instead has a "cautious optimism" about President Barack Obama. "I think Barack Obama is looking to you," said Schlanger. "I think he woke up after the election."

Turner readily tied the new president to his own plight in his speech, and complained that U.S. Attorney Michael Sullivan is using his case as a career booster.

"We're asking people to write to Obama and ask that they investigate the prosecutors," said Turner. "And not only here, but the prosecutors around the country… If there's going to be change, we have to be the agents of change."

He then defended his right to speak out about the case, even as a motion for a gag order is due to be heard by a federal judge on Feb. 12.

"The prosecutors will collaborate with the media to put out all kinds of information that they call evidence, but it's not evidence because it's not being cross-examined," said Turner at the podium. "No reporter pointed out that the picture is not a picture of a crime - if it's even a picture of me. I still have no remembrance of meeting


Chaffetz: 'Absolute Joke' for FBI to Withhold Files on Clinton Email ...
Fox News Insider-
The FBI is rejecting a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request to turn over files related to its investigation of Hillary Clinton's handling of classified emails.


In Defense of the “Deep State” and a Free Press
Lawfare (blog)-
It seems fair to conclude that more good than harm came from Daniel Ellsberg's leak of the Pentagon Papers and former FBI agent Mark Felt's role as “Deep ...

Link du jour




Putin's spokesman confirms it received email from Trump's personal ...
Boing Boing
The newly uncovered emails, moreover — along with Cohen's statement — could used by FBI special counsel Robert Mueller to demonstrate an intent to ...


California teen arrested, beaten after she was mistaken for large man by cops files legal claim against city, police say
NEW YORK DAILY NEWS Wednesday, August 30, 2017, 12:10 PM

A California teen who claimed police used excessive force after mistaking her for a bald, large man has filed a legal claim against the city of Bakersfield and its officers.

Tatyana Hargrove was riding her bicycle in June when she was stopped and detained at gunpoint. Hargrove said an officer put his knee in her back and another knee on her head.

"I told him 'I can't breathe, I can't breathe' and then I started yelling out 'somebody help, somebody help me, they're gonna kill me,'" she said during an interview last month.

She was seen with bruises and bites in the interview, which was posted on Facebook and has been viewed nearly eight million times. She was also bitten by a police dog during the arrest.

Calif. teen beaten during arrest says she was mistaken for man

Tatyana Hargrove has filed a legal claim against the city of Bakersfield and the police. (AP)
The Bakersfield chapter of the NAACP claims race played a role in the arrest.

The 19-year-old Hargrove was hit with a series of charges, including resisting arrest and assaulting an officer. The charges were later dismissed.

Cops admitted they mistook her for a male suspect who was much taller. Hargrove stands at 5-foot-2.

Hargrove suffered cuts and bruises on her body during the arrest.
"What happened to Tatyana Hargrove is a serious injustice, but perhaps what is even more troubling is that this appears to be a pattern of conduct by the Bakersfield Police Department," said lawyer Neil Gehlawat. "This case is


So Let’s Talk About the Science of How Climate Change Kicked Harvey into Higher Gear
Harvey is finally on the move.

After making a second landfall early Wednesday, the storm is passing slowly out of the East Texas region that has suffered so much first from Harvey’s initial lashing as a rapidly intensifying category 4 storm, and second from its long-lasting and unprecedented rainfall.

(Harvey rapidly intensifies into a category 4 monster just prior to landfall. This rapid intensification and other climate change related factors helped to make Harvey a more dangerous storm. Image source: NASA.)

At this point we can take a bit of a step back to look at the larger situation. Sure, impacts will probably continue and even worsen for some areas. And due to a historic pulse of water heading downstream, the hammered city of Houston is far from out of the woods.

But as with Sandy and so many other freakish strong storms in a present climate that has warmed by around 1.2 C above pre-industrial values, we would be remiss if we didn’t discuss the climate change related factors that gave Harvey more fuel, that helped it to rapidly intensify, that worsened its flooding — both from rains and from storm surge, and that may have helped to produce a still pocket in the upper level winds that allowed it to stick around for so long.

Warmer Ocean Surfaces Mean More Rapidly Intensifying Storms, Higher Peak Intensity of Worst Storms

Hurricanes like Harvey cannot readily form in cool waters below a range between 70 and 75 degrees Fahrenheit. Ideally, the storms require ocean surface temperatures warmer than 80 degrees (F). And the more heat that’s available at the ocean surface, the more energy that’s available for a storm when it does form.

This energy comes in the form of atmospheric lift. In other words, air rises off the water more vigorously as water temperature rises. This lifting energy is called convection. And the more that’s available, the more powerful storms can ultimately become.

(Sea surface temperatures were between 1 and 2 degrees Celsius above average as Harvey approached Texas. Human-forced climate change is causing the oceans to warm. This, in turn, provides more fuel for hurricanes like Harvey — helping them to rapidly intensify and pushing their peak strength higher. Image source: NOAA.)

According to Dr Michael Mann, Ocean surfaces in the Gulf of Mexico are fully 1 to 1.5 degrees Celsius warmer, on average, than they were just 30 years ago. This warming provides more energy for storms that do form. And this, in turn, raises the top potential intensity of storms.

Some scientists, like Dr. James Hansen, refer to this prevalence of worsening extremity as loading the climate dice. If, in the past, we were rolling with a die six with a 1 representing the lowest storm intensity and a 6 representing the highest, we’re now rolling with something like a die six +1. The result is that the strongest storms are stronger and the absolutely strongest storms have an ability to achieve previously unattainable strengths due to the fact that there’s a lot more energy there to kick them into a higher state.

Increased potential peak storm intensity as a climate change factor does not necessarily result in more tropical storms forming overall. That part of the science on hurricanes is highly uncertain. But that heat engine in the form of warmer surface waters is available for the storms that do form to tap. And that can make them a lot stronger and more damaging than they otherwise would have been.

(Loading the climate dice — changes in frequency of cold and warm temperatures also has an impact on heatwaves, droughts, wildfires, storm intensity, and heavy precipitation events. Image source: NASA.)

As Harvey approached land, it tapped the energy of this much warmer than normal ocean surface. And that energy caused the storm to rapidly strengthen — first from a minimal tropical storm to a Hurricane, and then from a minimal hurricane to a Category 4 monster. Meteorologists tend to call such periods of rapid intensification — bombification. This term comes from minimum pressures that rapidly drop in swiftly strengthening storms — seeming to bomb out. And due to warming, the science indicates that rapid strengthening is also more likely. With some models pointing toward a 10-20 fold increase in the frequency of rapidly intensifying storms by the end of this Century if human forced warming of ocean surfaces continues.

Warmer Atmosphere Means Heavier Rainfall

Related to a warming of the ocean surface (and land surfaces as well) is the basic scientific fact that such warming causes the amount of water vapor in the atmosphere to increase. In total, with each 1 degree Celsius of warming near the Earth’s surface, the atmosphere ends up holding about 6-7 percent more moisture. The properties of this warming-driven increase in atmospheric moisture are described by the scientifically proven Clausius–Clapeyron relation which defines, in meteorology, how atmospheric water vapor content is driven by various factors, including temperature.

If we dig just a little bit further into our understanding of how this scientific driver impacts the atmosphere in a warmer world, we find that not only does the moisture content of a warmer atmosphere increase, but both the rates of evaporation and precipitation increase.


(Global warming has brought with it a sharp increase in the number of record-breaking daily rainfall events. This is due to the fact that a warmer world holds more storm-fueling moisture in its atmosphere. This warmer, wetter atmosphere increased the peak potential rainfall from Harvey enabling it to smash records for rainfall rates and precipitation totals. Image source: Increased Record-Breaking Precipitation Events Under Global Warming.)

It is here that we return to the loaded climate dice mentioned above. If, as we find today, the Earth is about 1.2 degrees Celsius warmer than in the past, then the atmosphere holds more moisture. About 7-8 percent more. And since there’s more heat, evaporation is more intense where it does happen. This loads the climate dice for more intense droughts. But since what goes up in the form of evaporation results in a heavier load of moisture in the higher clouds and in the storms that do form, the rains that follow will also tend to be more intense. This loads the dice for more severe rainfall events. And we have a very clear scientific observation that the most extreme rainstorms are becoming much more intense overall (see above graphic).

For Harvey, this meant that more moisture was available to provide the record-setting rainfall amounts coming from that system. Peak rainfall totals from the storm are now at nearly 52 inches. This is the most rainfall ever to occur in Texas from a tropical system in our records. A measure that may also break the all-time U.S. record for rainfall from a tropical storm. And Harvey was enabled to produce such high rainfall amounts by a warmer atmosphere.

Harvey a Brown Ocean Cyclone?

Increasing rates of evaporation and precipitation had one obvious effect in Harvey — they increased the potential severity of rains coming from this kind of storm. But they also increase the ability of storms like Harvey to maintain strength or even intensify over land. If, for example, a storm like Harvey dumps a very heavy load of rainfall over land and if the evaporation from these recent rains has increased in a warming world, then storms like Harvey can tend to draw strength back from what amounts to a small ocean on land.

A recent NASA scientific paper on this issue describes a Brown Ocean effect. The 2013 NASA paper noted:

Before making landfall, tropical storms gather power from the warm waters of the ocean. Storms in the newly defined category derive their energy instead from the evaporation of abundant soil moisture – a phenomenon that Andersen and Shepherd call the “brown ocean.”

…The research also points to possible implications for storms’ response to climate change. “As dry areas get drier and wet areas get wetter, are you priming the soil to get more frequent inland tropical cyclone intensification?” asked Shepherd.

In essence, cyclones are better able to maintain strength or even re-intensify over wet areas of land in a warmer world due to increasing levels of evaporation and it was Harvey’s ability to maintain tropical storm strength over land for up to three days that helped to enable it to keep dropping such heavy volumes of rain.

Higher Seas Mean Worse Storm Surge Flooding

A warmer climate also brings with it the melt of continental glaciers and the thermal expansion of ocean waters. As glaciers flood into the world’s oceans, they rise. And since fossil fuel burning began at the start of the industrial age this related warming of the Earth and melting of glaciers has caused the oceans around the world to rise by more than 20 centimeters globally.

(Global warming increases the base ocean level which, in turn, worsens storm surge flooding. Harvey’s storm surge came in on this higher ramp. Image source: Sea Level Rise Science.)

Such higher seas alone are causing some coastal settlements to flood even on sunny days. But when storms like Harvey come roaring ashore, they do so on a higher overall launching pad. And this produces a multiplier effect for storm surge damages. A multiplier that would not have been there if the world hadn’t warmed.

Polar Warming Contributes to Blocking Patterns That Make Weather Stick Around in One Place Longer

Another climate change related factor that contributed to Harvey’s danger was its persist hovering over the same region. Harvey would not have been as damaging for Texas and the Gulf if it hadn’t hung over East Texas for more than five days. But here, again, we find that climate change related factors appear to be contributing to the increased lingering of various extreme weather producing systems.

To understand how, we need to look at the upper level atmospheric circulation pattern that moves weather systems from place-to-place. In other words — the Jet Stream. Climate change influences the Jet Stream by generating more warming at the poles than near the Equator. This in turn, according to the research of scientists like Dr Jennifer Francis, changes atmospheric slope. Warmer poles, in other words, create a taller atmosphere at the poles relative to the Equator.

(A high amplitude ridge-trough pattern helped to create a stagnant upper air slot in which Harvey stalled. This voiding of upper level steering currents enabled Harvey’s persistence. Some scientists are pointing toward increasing prevalence of these kinds of high amplitude ridges and troughs related to polar warming warming which is an upshot of global warming. Image source: Earth Nullschool.)

Since atmospheric slope and temperature differences between the poles and Equator drive the speed of the Jet Stream, warmer poles cause the Jet Stream to slow down and meander. This generates big ridges and deep troughs. It also appears to assist the generation of large blocking high pressure systems. And all of these features can tend to cause weather patterns to get stuck.

This year, a persistent trough in the Eastern U.S. has generated a consistent stormy pattern and aided in the firing of powerful thunderstorms that produced record rains over places like Kansas City, Missouri. In the West, a persistent ridge has produced record heat and very extreme wildfires while aiding the formation of a very intense flash drought in Montana and the Dakotas. Harvey got stuck in a stagnant pocket between these two relatively fixed weather patterns. A climate change related feature that may have increased the duration of Harvey and facilitated its record rains falling over such a long period.

Other Factors — Interaction With The Eastern Trough

Finally, we can state that Harvey’s interaction with the very deep eastern trough also helped to fuel it. The trough provided a moisture and instability kick to Harvey as it moved over Texas — helping to wring out tropical moisture over the Lone Star State. And if we accept the fact that polar warming contributed to the depth of this eastern trough by slowing down the Jet Stream, then its interaction with Harvey was also a climate change related factor.

Qualifying This Discussion

What can be said with certainty is that climate change did not cause the hurricane. That hurricanes do happen in a normal climate. But this is the same same thing as saying that home runs happen in both middle school and major league baseball. It’s all baseball, but the factors from one to the other have qualitatively changed in an obvious fashion. The same thing happens to weather in a warming world. And it is due to the changes in these underlying factors that we can say without a doubt that climate change made Harvey worse.

What we can also say is that our certainty of all these various climate change related factors involved varies. For example, we can say with very high certainty that global warming is worsening rainfall extremes and that sea level rise is worsening storm surges. We can say with a good level of confidence that the peak intensity of the worst storms is also increasing and that bombification is more likely. And we can say with moderate confidence that climate change is altering atmospheric circulation patterns (an issue that is still under considerable debate).

But the varying degrees of certainty with regards to these aspects do not change basic facts. Your climate is your weather averaged over 30 years. And if the world warms, both your climate and your weather change.

Exposing the Big Game  /  August 30, 2017
Reblogged this on The Extinction Chronicles.

robertscribbler  /  August 30, 2017

wharf rat  /  August 30, 2017
Hurricane Ted Cruz drowns Houston?

350 Action: Name Hurricanes After Climate-Change Deniers …
Aug 26, 2013 – Activist Group: Hurricanes Should be Named after Michele Bachmann and Marco Rubio


robertscribbler  /  August 30, 2017
Maybe Hurricane Exxon… It was an excellent proposed action aimed at holding those responsible accountable. Too bad it didn’t go through. Now it’s down to lawsuits and other forms of all-too-appropriate public shaming.

eleggua  /  August 30, 2017
Great stuff, Robert. Thank you for being on top of things and keeping us so well informed and aware.

‘The Energy 202: We asked Texas Republicans about Harvey and climate change. Only one answered.’
By Dino Grandoni August 30 at 9:02 AM


When members of Congress from Texas return to work next week, the fallout from Harvey, likely the worst disaster to ever hit the state, will follow them back to Washington.

Unless it is reauthorized by the end of September, the National Flood Insurance Program, which is nearly $25 billion in debt, will lose most of its borrowing power at a time when it will begin making payouts on claims on the Texas Gulf Coast. And President Trump has promised to work with Congress on a federal aid package for affected communities in Texas.

From Bloomberg’s Jennifer Epstein:

Jennifer Epstein


Harvey aid “going to be a costly proposition,” Trump says, mentioning Cruz & Cornyn. “I think we’ll come through with the right solution.”
1:56 PM – Aug 29, 2017

But that aid request puts many Texas Republicans in Congress in a bind four years in the making. In 2013, all but one Texas Republican who was serving in Congress then and is still in office now voted against an aid package for New York and New Jersey following Hurricane Sandy.

“The congressional members in Texas are hypocrites,” New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie (R), a Trump ally, said this week. “I said back in 2012, they’d be proven to be hypocrites. It was just a matter of time.” See a clip below:

hristie took direct aim at Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Tex.), who voted against Sandy help four years ago, today on “Morning Joe:”

Jennifer Jacobs


Chris Christie on “Morning Joe” raked Ted Cruz for saying 2/3 of Hurricane Sandy relief bill was pork. “He made it up” and “he knows it.”
4:45 AM – Aug 30, 2017

The Energy 202 reached out all 38 members of Texas delegation to ask about that and other issues related to Harvey (follow The Post’s comprehensive coverage here) as they prepare to return to Washington.

Only one Republican, Rep. Lamar Smith, responded to defend his 2013 vote.

“It is my hope that our funding package for aiding those affected by Harvey doesn’t include funding unrelated to damage caused by the storm,” said Smith, who is the chairman of the House Science Committee and a frequent critic of federal climate scientists. “The Sandy bill was used as an opportunity for fiscally irresponsible politicians to exploit natural disaster spending in order to fund pet projects with taxpayer money.”

In 2013, many Republicans derided the Sandy aid bill as being laden with spending provisions unrelated to the hurricane, such as fixes to the Smithsonian Institution in Washington, D.C., and the Kennedy Space Center in Florida.

On MSNBC this week, Cruz claimed that “two-thirds of that bill had nothing to do with Sandy.” (Cruz’s office did not reply to The Post’s request for comment.)

However, fact checkers have pointed out that a Congressional Research Service report on the bill concluded that it “largely focused on responding to Hurricane Sandy.”

Texas’s other senator and the No. 2 Senate Republican, John Cornyn, also defended his Sandy vote, noting that he did approve a smaller, $9.7 billion increase in the Federal Emergency Management Agency’s borrowing power before rejecting the larger $50.5 billion aid package. (Cornyn’s office also didn’t reply.)

Patrick Svitek


Cornyn tells reporters he’s talked w/ WH about Congress first making a “down payment” on Harvey aid and they seem “sympathetic” to the plan.
2:28 PM – Aug 29, 2017

Texas Democrats, however, criticized their Republican colleagues for voting against the Sandy package and said they agreed with scientists who say climate change increases the severity of disasters like Harvey.

“Natural disasters know no party, and it was regrettable that Texas Republicans played politics with the Hurricane Sandy aid package in their time of need,” Rep. Marc Veasey (D-Tex.) said.

Calling from a school in his Houston-area district that has been converted into a shelter, Rep. Al Green (D-Tex.) added that Congress should pass an aid package not only to help the people of Texas, but “because we want every American to know that your government is going to be there for you in a time of crisis.”

The lone Republican “yes” vote from the Lone Star State for that Sandy bill came from Rep. John Abney Culberson, whose district encompasses parts of Houston and its suburbs.

On the question of climate change, Republicans from Texas were also mute.

Meanwhile, the six Texas Democrats who responded to The Post’s request for comment — Reps. Joaquin Castro, Henry Cuellar, Lloyd Doggett and Eddie Bernice Johnson along with Green and Veasey — agreed with scientists who say climate change increases the severity of disasters like Harvey.

“The flooding in Houston caused by Harvey marks the third ‘500-year’ flood to hit the city in the past three years,” said Johnson, who serves with Smith on the House Science Committee as its top Democrat. “It is hard to believe these catastrophic events can be occurring so frequently by chance.”

However, Smith pointed to an interview that Bill Read, the former director of the National Hurricane Center, gave on CNN, in which Read declined to attribute the Harvey’s intensity to climate change.

“This is not an uncommon occurrence to see storms grow and intensify rapidly in the western Gulf of Mexico,” Read said. “That’s as long as we’ve been tracking them, that has occurred.”

Indeed, climate scientists say singling out this one hurricane as a global-warming-driven anomaly would be a mistake. But they also argue that climate change can worsen the hurricanes that do occur.

“The storm is a bit more intense, bigger and longer lasting than it otherwise would be,” Kevin Trenberth, a climate researcher with the National Center for Atmospheric Research in Boulder, Colo., told The Post over the weekend.

As for the National Flood Insurance Program, The Post’s Mike DeBonis offers this breakdown:

Even before stormwaters swept across metropolitan Houston, debate on how to restructure the NFIP exposed fissures in Congress that crossed traditional partisan lines, pitting conservatives who want to scale back the government costs for the program against lawmakers from flood-prone regions wary of jacking up their constituents’ premiums.

“Leaving millions of homeowners without flood insurance is not an option,” Castro, a Texas Democrat, said. “Congress must either modify the program in a way that keeps rates affordable or simply pass an extension of the current program.”

Meanwhile, Harvey made landfall for a second time early Wednesday as a tropical storm in Louisiana. The storm hit west of Cameron, La., around 4 a.m. local time, according to the National Hurricane Center. The center predicted another 3 to 6 inches of rain would fall from southwestern Louisiana and between the area near the border with Texas and into western Kentucky, with “isolated amounts up to 10 inches.” The center warned of “catastrophic and life-threatening flooding” that would continue in and around Houston and into southwest Louisiana for the remainder of the week.
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robertscribbler  /  August 30, 2017
Well, the republicans have been terrible on this issue. And so far they haven’t paid the price. It’s partly due to the fact that the public has been slow to wake up on climate change. But the other thing that republicans rely on is people not paying attention to what they actually do with legislation. Once people realize how bad this legislative agenda has been, there will be hell to pay for republicans.

climateplace  /  August 30, 2017
Note that with the temperature anomaly graphs, the probability of “Extremely Hot Summers” (3 standard deviations above normal or “3-sigma”) have increased ~50X in the past 50 years so when a 3-sigma event happens, you can say there was a ~98% chance that it was caused by global warming. If we had similar probability distribution charts for rain events, I’m sure the probabilities would be similar (that’s why “500-year events” are common now).

robertscribbler  /  August 30, 2017
Good points, CP.

wili  /  August 30, 2017
I didn’t click on all the links in the text of your post, so apologies if these have already been reference (and thanks to jaim at asif for drawing these to my attention):


Why Harvey Is Stuck Near Texas

“Hurricanes gain strength from warmer oceans, but climate change might be causing another problem higher in the sky.

In March, Mann and several colleagues published a study in the journal Scientific Reports that demonstrates a relationship between extreme events, such as the 2011 Texas drought and 2010 Pakistan flooding, and a rare stationary phase that upper atmospheric currents sometimes go through in the mid-latitudes.

Stefan Rahmstorf, a co-author of that paper and head of Earth Systems Analysis at the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research, explained that there may really be several things going on. In general, the jet stream, the high-flying river of air that flows west-to-east, has slowed and gone all wavy in recent summers, with pronounced north-south meanders. That’s one thing that may have helped hold Harvey in place. Researchers have sparred since 2012 over whether Arctic warming, which is occurring at twice the global average, is driving this atmospheric wobble, consequently creating more opportunities for persistent weather farther south.

In a number of extreme cases analyzed by their paper—California drought, Russia’s 2010 heatwave and Pakistan’s related flood—the meandering north-south river of the jet-stream stabilizes for periods of time in some places, creating an insurmountable wavelike band. The researchers looked for some kind of misbehavior in atmospheric circulation after realizing that heat-related effects alone couldn’t explain the extreme nature of some disasters.”

wili  /  August 30, 2017
James Hansen also discusses this on Democracy Now! today https://www.democracynow.org/2017/8/30/ex_nasa_scientist_james_hansen_there

sdbast  /  August 30, 2017
Reblogged this on sdbast.

eleggua  /  August 30, 2017
Hurricane Harvey Coverage LIVE on CBSN

coloradobob  /  August 30, 2017
At the Beaumont-Port Arthur Airport, 26.03” of rain fell on Tuesday, which is more than double Beaumont’s previous calendar-day record of 12.76″ on May 19, 1923, in records going back to 1901. Between 10 pm last night and 1 am this morning, 11.86” fell. So far on Wednesday, 4.71” has been reported (as of 11 am CDT), bringing their 5-day storm total rainfall to a staggering 47.98”.



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