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Posts: 8,845
Reply with quote  #1 
My current thinking and work has me focusing on the creation of volunteer
civilian review police/criminal justice boards that have subpoena powers.
This model is especially attractive to me because it engages the average voter and taxpayer
into "owning" their criminal justice system by creating and enforcing standards for
the community's need for safety . This is done in lieu of the mercenaries currently working and and setting standards for  the criminal justice  system.

The National Association for Civilian Oversight of Law Enforcement (NACOLE) is a non-profit organization that brings together individuals or agencies working to establish or improve oversight of police officers in the United States.


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The Last Circle/Cheri Seymour



Sample Chapters from The Last Circle now online below



Chapter 17 - The Inslaw Affair


Chapter 22 - The Octopus Exposed


Chapter 25 - Rachel’s Resolution


The A.R.K. website offers a coming together of selected researchers, writers, authors, publicists, friends, associates, witnesses and contributors – keepers of the flame - dedicated to making the world a healthier and safer place to live for ourselves, our children and our grand-children.


A.R.K. seeks to educate and provide a forum to promote an understanding of contemporary issues that affect every facet of our daily lives, including links to other websites that enlighten beyond A.R.K.’s boundaries.


A.R.K. also provides historical background that explains how the United States reached this critical point in history, the perfect storm in which the underpinnings of economic, political, legal and social foundations have been irrevocably altered, leaving average Americans floating in a sea of uncertainty, like ships in the night with no safe port.


[corupt]In some cases these changes have been for the better, giving Americans of all creeds and races the opportunity to reach for the golden ring, but in the process of growth, it has spawned a deadly flood of corrupt politicians and officials, organized crime, narcotics and human traffickers, secret international cartels, corporate looters of the economy and the environment, and the list goes on into infinity, leaving future generations unprepared to reverse this decline.


The only peaceful counter-action to this growing phenomenon is education. A.R.K. is comprised of caring, concerned, and intelligent individuals from all walks of life who have generously devoted their time and personal well-being to come forward with their experience and knowledge because they are philosophically compelled to do the right thing. It is as simple as that.


[book]Every book, article or testimonial presented at this website has been scrupulously analyzed by the A.R.K. council for rectitude. We are comprised of hard-working professional people (with varying political and spiritual beliefs), so if we have overlooked some aspect that needs correction, we welcome input. We will make the correction if necessary, we seek only the truth, but we are not subject to long debates or conspiracy theories that stretch beyond our ability to verify the facts.

Posts: 8,845
Reply with quote  #3 

A punishing culture

 Criminal Injustice
By LANCE TAPLEY  |  October 24, 2013


Posts: 8,845
Reply with quote  #4 
 link   http://www.hindustantimes.com/india-news/4-yr-old-girl-claims-she-is-kalpana-chawla/article1-235334.aspx

I just finished reading Dr Ian Stevenson's book WHERE BIOLOGY AND REINCARNATION INTERSECT

Is on my top 5 books list


Posts: 8,845
Reply with quote  #5 

Mayor, APD Chief respond to officer’s remarks before Boyd shooting
By Chris McKee Published: September 30, 2014

Officer speaks of using force before James Boyd shooting
In national press, APD Chief Eden admits ‘systemic’ problems
Boyd lawsuit filed against APD

– Albuquerque’s mayor and police chief are now talking about controversial comments made by Albuquerque Police detective Keith Sandy before he shot and killed James Boyd. However, it’s not Sandy’s comments about using force against the homeless camper that has them upset right now, rather, it’s something else.

Mayor R.J Berry and Chief Gorden Eden both took issue with Sandy calling James Boyd, who suffered from mental illness, a “lunatic.” The two top officials wouldn’t go near Sandy’s comment about using force on Boyd.

“This is an example of using language that’s inappropriate,” said Mayor R.J. Berry.

“It’s absolutely unacceptable,” said APD Chief Gorden Eden.

From the mayor to the police chief, both top city officials say they’re upset with comments made by detective Keith Sandy on newly released dash-cam video.

The video comes from a belt-tape recording by New Mexico State Police Sergeant Chris Ware, who was called to scene hours before Boyd was shot. In the recording, Sandy can be heard making comments about using force against James Boyd hours before he shot the mentally ill homeless camper to death.

“This f*****g lunatic? (unintelligible) I’m going to shoot him with (unintelligible) shotgun here in a second,” said Sandy in the recording.

“Any police officer who would call somebody a lunatic in the course of a high stress situation like that, its disappointing,” said Mayor R.J. Berry, responding to the comments on Tuesday.

Mayor Berry said Sandy calling Boyd a lunatic “doesn’t fit” with what he expects out of the Albuquerque Police Department. However, the mayor wouldn’t talk about Sandy’s comment on using force. Mayor Berry also wouldn’t address Keith Sandy’s employment.

“Is this somebody that you would want working for the city, exemplifying this behavior?” asked News 13 reporter Chris McKee.

“Well once again, I have to restrict my comments as a mayor because there are federal investigations, there are lawsuits in place,” said Mayor Berry.

“I think some people are saying though, in the end, why does Keith Sandy still have a job for Albuquerque Police?” asked News 13’s Chris McKee.

“Well once again, people need to understand he’s on administrative leave and he has been since the day of the James Boyd shooting,” responded Mayor Berry.

As for Chief Gorden Eden, he feels much the same way as the mayor in regards to Sandy’s comments.

“Our policies strictly prohibit that type of language from our officers,” said Chief Eden.

Eden also spoke with KRQE News 13 on Tuesday, but would only comment on Sandy’s “lunatic” remark, not the detective’s threat of using force, even though making profane comments to citizens and making comments about using force are both violations of APD’s standard operating procedures.

“I cannot address the specifics of an ongoing criminal investigatio

Posts: 8,845
Reply with quote  #6 

Posts: 8,845
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see link for full story


FBI informant Caranci testifies in Baccari trial in North Providence corruption case

Published: October 17, 2014

PROVIDENCE, R.I. — A former North Providence official, who tipped off authorities about the corrupt activities of three men who served as councilmen with him, testified Thursday that he was not aware of any major distinction between bribery and extortion.

The former councilman, Paul F. Caranci, is now a deputy secretary of state.

He was at the center of the government’s effort to investigate three corrupt councilmen and Providence developer Richard P. Baccari Sr., who is now on trial in U.S. District Court, Providence, where he faces charges of bribery and conspiracy.

Baccari’s lawyer, Anthony M. Cardinale, has argued that the corrupt councilmen forced his client to pay them money and that the developer was a victim of extortion.

Baccari’s family business, Churchill & Banks, had invested more than $300,000 in an effort to build a supermarket, and it needed several zoning votes from the council to go forward in 2009, according to Cardinale.

The prosecution contends that Baccari bribed the cou

Posts: 8,845
Reply with quote  #8 


see link for full story

San Francisco police corruption trial begins in federal court
November 10 2014
San Francisco police Sgt. Ian Furminger in the Tenderloin in 2012.
A federal prosecutor opened the trial of two San Francisco police officers Monday by telling jurors the case was about “corruption with a badge.” Defense lawyers countered that it was about a third policeman who cut a deal with prosecutors to frame their clients.

Reynaldo Vargas, who pleaded guilty to four felony charges last month and agreed to testify against his former colleagues, is a man with an “evil nature” whose testimony was “bought and paid for,” Brian Getz, attorney for police Sgt. Ian Furminger, said in an opening statement to the U.S. District Court jury in San Francisco.

Teresa Caffese, lawyer for Officer Edmond Robles, said Robles “had no knowledge of what Vargas was doing” and “didn’t help Vargas commit any of the crimes.” Vargas, she said, “is a liar and he is a convicted criminal” who “is now pointing fingers at Ed Robles because he wants to save his own skin.”

But Assistant U.S. Attorney Rodney Villazor said Vargas and other witnesses would describe a series of thefts of money, drugs and other property from criminal suspects by the three officers, who worked in the plainclothes unit at the Mission Station.

$30,000 in cash

Ex-S.F. officer pleads guilty, will testify in corruption case
Officers in corruption case face additional charges
Cops deny corruption charges as lawyer questions case
In a May 2009, during a search of a home in Newark, where the officers were assisting the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration, Villazor said, Vargas found a shovel in the backyard, dug up $30,000 in cash and split it with Furminger and Robles. The next day, the prosecutor said, Robles deposited $6,000 in his bank account.

In another 2009 search, Villazor said, Vargas found two Apple gift cards, one for $500 and the other for $53.17, in the hotel room of a suspected drug dealer. “Vargas looked at Ed Robles and said, 'Let’s go shopping,’” Villazor said, and one of the gift cards was used to buy an iPod for Robles’ girlfriend.

“That’s what this case is about, a cop stealing money,” the prosecutor said. He said the items police seize during searches belong in evidence lockers, “not in their bank accounts.”

Caffese said Robles, when he gave the iPod as a gift,did not know it had been purchased with a stolen gift card.

Furminger and Robles are charged with theft from suspects and from the city and with depriving the public of their honest services. The criminal charges against all three officers followed an investigation by San Francisco police and the FBI that concluded they had stolen marijuana that had been seized from suspects in 2009, and that Vargas had delivered the drugs to a pair of informants, who sold it in return for 25 percent of the proceeds.

Furminger and Robles have been suspended without pay.

Ex-officer’s admissions

Vargas was a police officer from 1999 until he was fired in 2012 for allegedly falsifying his time sheets. In a plea agreement Oct. 21, he admitted stealing computers, gift cards, money and other property and keeping them for personal use. He also said he, Furminger and Robles had taken marijuana from a seized UPS package in 2009, and that he later gave the drugs to tw

Posts: 8,845
Reply with quote  #9 



The latest news on the burgeoning police state in the US — a page-one investigative report in the New York Times disclosing that at least 40 agencies of the US government from the Department of Health and Human Services to the Supreme Court (!) are using undercover agents to spy on and even to entrap law-abiding American citizens — suggests that we have passed the tipping point.

One can no longer speak in terms of the US as a country that is moving towards becoming a police state. We are living in a police state.

The Times reports that IRS personnel have been going undercover posing as accountants and even as physicians to root out tax fraud, that the Supreme Court has been dispatching some of its guards (all of whom have been trained in undercover work) “dressed down” in civilian clothes to mingle with protesters (notably abortion-rights activists) to spy on people simply exercising their First Amendment rights outside the court building, that the USDA sends out agents posing as Food Stamp recipients to try and entrap shop-owners to commit Food Stamp fraud, and that even NASA and the Smithsonian Institution have undercover operatives. Undercover cops and agents are assuming the identities of teachers, doctors, journalists and even priests.

This information has to be put together with the rampant militarization of local police forces, who have become an occupying army, and with the proliferation of spying activities by state and local police agencies, encouraged by the establishment by the FBI and the Department of Homeland Security of myriad “Joint Anti-Terrorism Strike Forces, and of 76 so-called Fusion Centers. These latter are totally unregulated operations that

Posts: 8,845
Reply with quote  #10 

see link for full bullet wound

The Police Are Still Out of Control
I should know.
By FRANK SERPICO October 23, 2014

In the opening scene of the 1973 movie “Serpico,” I am shot in the face—or to be more accurate, the character of Frank Serpico, played by Al Pacino, is shot in the face. Even today it’s very difficult for me to watch those scenes, which depict in a very realistic and terrifying way what actually happened to me on Feb. 3, 1971. I had recently been transferred to the Narcotics division of the New York City Police Department, and we were moving in on a drug dealer on the fourth floor of a walk-up tenement in a Hispanic section of Brooklyn. The police officer backing me up instructed me (since I spoke Spanish) to just get the apartment door open “and leave the rest to us.”

One officer was standing to my left on the landing no more than eight feet away, with his gun drawn; the other officer was to my right rear on the stairwell, also with his gun drawn. When the door opened, I pushed my way in and snapped the chain. The suspect slammed the door closed on me, wedging in my head and right shoulder and arm. I couldn’t move, but I aimed my snub-nose Smith & Wesson revolver at the perp (the movie version unfortunately goes a little Hollywood here, and has Pacino struggling and failing to raise a much-larger 9-millimeter automatic). From behind me no help came. At that moment my anger got the better of me. I made the almost fatal mistake of taking my eye off the perp and screaming to the officer on my left: “What the hell you waiting for? Give me a hand!” I turned back to face a gun blast in my face. I had cocked my weapon and fired back at him almost in the same instant, probably as reflex action, striking him. (He was later captured.)

When I regained consciousness, I was on my back in a pool of blood trying to assess the damage from the gunshot wound in my cheek. Was this a case of small entry, big exit, as often happens with bullets? Was the back of my head missing? I heard a voice saying, “Don’ worry, you be all right, you be all right,” and when I opened my eyes I saw an old Hispanic man looking down at me like Carlos Castaneda’s Don Juan. My “backup” was nowhere in sight. They hadn’t even called for assistance—I never heard the famed “Code 1013,” meaning “Officer Down.” They didn’t call an ambulance either, I later learned; the old man did. One patrol car responded to investigate, and realizing I was a narcotics officer rushed me to a nearby hospital (one of the officers who drove me that night said, “If I knew it was him, I would have left him there to bleed to death,” I learned later).

The next time I saw my “back-up” officers was when one of them came to the hospital to bring me my watch. I said, “What the hell am I going to do with a watch? What I needed was a back-up. Where were you?” He said, “Fuck you,” and left. Both my “back-ups” were later awarded medals for saving my life.

I still don’t know exactly what happened on that day. There was never any real investigation. But years later, Patrick Murphy, who was police commissioner at the time, was giving a speech at one of my alma maters, the John Jay College of Criminal Justice, and I confronted him. I said, “My name is Frank Serpico, and I’ve been carrying a bullet in my head for over 35 years, and you, Mr. Murphy, are the man I hold responsible. You were the man who was brought as commissioner to take up the cause that I began — rooting out corruption. You could have protected me; instead you put me in harm’s way. What have you got to say?” He hung his head, and had no answer.

Even now, I do not know for certain why I was left trapped in that door by my fellow police officers. But the Narcotics division was rotten to the core, with many guys taking money from the very drug dealers they were supposed to bust. I had refused to take bribes and had testified against my fellow officers. Police make up a peculiar subculture in society. More often than not they have their own moral code of behavior, an “us against them” attitude, enforced by a Blue Wall of Silence. It’s their version of the Mafia’s omerta. Speak out, and you’re no longer “one of us.” You’re one of “them.” And as James Fyfe, a nationally recognized expert on the use of force, wrote in his 1993 book about this issue, Above The Law, officers who break the code sometimes won’t be helped in emergency situations, as I wasn’t.

On the left, Al Pacino plays Serpico in the 1973 movie. On the right, Frank Serpico leaves the Bronx County Courthouse after testifying on police corruption in 1973. | Getty Images
Forty-odd years on, my story probably seems like ancient history to most people, layered over with Hollywood legend. For me it’s not, since at the age of 78 I’m still deaf in one ear and I walk with a limp and I carry fragments of the bullet near my brain. I am also, all these years later, still persona non grata in the NYPD. Never mind that, thanks to Sidney Lumet’s direction and Al Pacino’s brilliant acting, “Serpico” ranks No. 40 on the American Film Institute’s list of all-time movie heroes, or that as I travel around the country and the world, police officers often tell me they were inspired to join the force after seeing the movie at an early age.

In the NYPD that means little next to my 40-year-old heresy, as they see it. I still get hate mail from active and retired police officers. A couple of years ago after the death of David Durk — the police officer who was one of my few allies inside the department in my efforts to expose graft — the Internet message board “NYPD Rant” featured some choice messages directed at me. “Join your mentor, Rat scum!” said one. An ex-con recently related to me that a precinct captain had once said to him, “If it wasn’t for that f***kin’ Serpico, I coulda been a millionaire today.” My informer went on to say, “Frank, you don’t seem to understand, they had a well-oiled money making machine going and you came along and threw a handful of sand in the gears.”

Read more: http://www.politico.com/magazine/story/2014/10/the-police-are-still-out-of-control-112160.html#ixzz3KgZK5We4

Posts: 8,845
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KING: 2 Chicago cops who sodomized man with screwdriver are still working

NEW YORK DAILY NEWS Thursday, October 6, 2016, 6:44 PM


Credo Action
Stand with Sen. Warren: Tell the FBI to explain failure to prosecute bankers


OCTOBER 6, 2016
What’s Behind Time Magazine’s Putin Demonizing?

“Russia Wants to Undermine Faith in the U.S. Election. Don’t Fall For It.” Thus reads the cover ofTime magazine with a photo of Vladimir Putin on the cover staring at me from shelves as I sit in an airport. Genuinely curious, I check out Massimo Calabresi’s article online.

Of course, U.S. elections are almost completely unverifiable and do not even pretend to meet international standards. Jimmy Carter doesn’t even try to monitor them because there’s no way to do it. Much voting is done on machines that simply must be trusted on faith. Whether they accurately count the votes entered is simply unknowable, and reason to wonder is fueled by the machines’ frequently changing a vote visibly just as it’s cast, and by the ease with which people have been able to hack the machines. Never mind all the problems with registration, intimidation, inconvenience, discrimination, etc.

We should undermine our own faith in the U.S. election system. I’d include in that the financial corruption, gerrymandering, etc., but here I’m just referring to the counting of votes. Then we should repair it! Is Russia helpfully pointing out the problem to us? Not that I’ve seen. But the Russia-did-it stories that were used to bury the DNC-rigged-its-primary stories rather shockingly blurted out in major corporate U.S. media what I’ve just been saying. For a while it seemed acceptable to be aware that U.S. elections are faith-based as long as it helps build up hostility with Russia. Now, however, we’re being told of our duty to remain firm in our faith. Time says:

“The leaders of the U.S. government, including the President and his top national-security advisers, face an unprecedented dilemma. Since the spring, U.S. intelligence and law-enforcement agencies have seen mounting evidence of an active Russian influence operation targeting the 2016 presidential election.”

Why the “top national-security advisers”? That’s a euphemism for war counselors. How do they come into this? And where is the evidence, mounting or otherwise?

“It is very unlikely the Russians could sway the actual vote count, because our election infrastructure is decentralized and voting machines are not accessible from the Internet.”

Of the 50 states into which the vote counting is “decentralized” there are only a handful the U.S. media will pay much attention to. Those “swing states” are the ones a hacker would hack. And here’s an interesting Washington Post article I recommend to the editors of Time: “More than 30 states offer online voting, but experts warn it isn’t secure.”

“But they can sow disruption and instability up to, and on, Election Day, more than a dozen senior U.S. officials tell TIME, undermining faith in the result and in democracy itself.”

Democracy itself? Egad! Those commies must be against democracy. Perhaps they even hate capitalism! How many of those senior officials have names? Is “senior” in this case a polite way of saying “extremely elderly”? Come on! Nobody has faith in U.S. democracy. That’s undermined every day by the U.S. government, as Time’s own pollsters are perfectly aware. Most U.S. residents believe their government is broken, and they’re perfectly right. Russia’s government could use a lot of improvements too. But only one of the two is building missile bases and engaging in military “exercises” on the other one’s border.

“The question, debated at multiple meetings at the White House, is how aggressively to respond to the Russian operation. Publicly naming and shaming the Russians and describing what the intelligence community knows about their activities would help Americans understand and respond prudently to any disruptions that might take place between now and the close of the polls.”

Gee, there’s an idea. If only there were a journalist in the building!

“Senior Justice Department officials have argued in favor of calling out the Russians, and that position has been echoed forcefully outside of government by lawmakers and former top national-security officials from both political parties.”

Wait, don’t tell me, are these the same guys who sincerely wanted to tell us where the Weapons of Mass Destruction were in Iraq?

“Unfortunately, it’s not that simple. The President and several of his closest national-security advisers are concerned about the danger of a confrontation in the new and ungoverned world of cyberspace, and they argue that while the U.S. has powerful offensive and defensive capabilities there, an escalating confrontation carries significant risks.”

That’s right! Hey, they know best. Accusing Russia without any evidence shouldn’t offend anybody. The Russian government should be grateful. But presenting evidence and seeking to uphold the law, truth, an


Sabre-Rattling with Russia Over Syria - Reigniting the Cold War

06 October 2016 10:40
A recent but very little covered letter to President Obama from a group of concerned military and intelligence professionals provides an interesting contrast to the growing anti-Russia/anti-Putin movement stemming from the White House, Department of Defense and Hillary Clinton.  The group that authored the letter is called Veteran Intelligence Professionals for Sanity (VIPS) and consists of the following individuals:
William Binney, former Technical Director, World Geopolitical & Military Analysis, NSA; co-founder, SIGINT Automation Research Center (ret.)
Fred Costello, Former Russian Linguist, USAF
Mike Gravel, former Adjutant, top secret control officer, Communications Intelligence Service; special agent of the Counter Intelligence Corps and former United States Senator
Matthew Hoh, former Capt., USMC, Iraq & Foreign Service Officer, Afghanistan (associate VIPS)
Larry Johnson, CIA and State Department officer
John Kiriakou, former CIA counterterrorism officer and former senior investigator, Senate Foreign Relations Committee
Linda Lewis, WMD preparedness policy analyst, USDA (ret.) (associate VIPS)
Edward Loomis, NSA, Cryptologic Computer Scientist (ret.)
Ray McGovern, former US Army infantry/intelligence officer & CIA analyst (ret.)
Elizabeth Murray, Deputy National Intelligence Officer for Middle East, CIA (ret.)
Todd Pierce, MAJ, US Army Judge Advocate (ret.)
Coleen Rowley, Division Counsel & Special Agent, FBI (ret.)
Kirk Wiebe, former Senior Analyst, SIGINT Automation Research Center, NSA, (ret.)
Robert Wing, former Foreign Service Officer
Ann Wright, U.S. Army Reserve Colonel (ret) and former U.S. Diplomat
This letter is particularly pertinent given the American withdrawal from the Russian-led talks on a ceasefire in Syria in early October as shown here:

With that background, here are some excerpts from the open letter to President Obama about America's deteriorating relationship with Russia:
"We write to alert you, as we did President George W. Bush, six weeks before the attack on Iraq, that the consequences of limiting your circle of advisers to a small, relatively inexperienced coterie with a dubious record for wisdom can prove disastrous.  Our concern this time regards Syria.

We are hoping that your President’s Daily Brief tomorrow will give appropriate attention to Saturday’s warning by Russia’s Foreign Ministry spokesperson Maria Zakharova: “If the US launches a direct aggression against Damascus and the Syrian Army, it would cause a terrible, tectonic shift not only in the country, but in the entire region.”
Speaking on Russian TV, she warned of those whose “logic is ‘why do we need diplomacy’ … when there is power … and methods of resolving a problem by power. We already know this logic; there is nothing new about it. It usually ends with one thing – full-scale war.”
We are also hoping that this is not the first you have heard of this – no doubt officially approved – statement. If on Sundays you rely on the “mainstream” press, you may well have missed it. In the Washington Post, an abridged report of Zakharova’s remarks (nothing about “full-scale war”) was buried in the last paragraph of an 11-paragraph article titled “Hospital in Aleppo is hit again by bombs.” Sunday’s New York Times totally ignored the Foreign Ministry spokesperson’s statements.
In our view, it would be a huge mistake to allow your national security advisers to follow the example of the Post and Times in minimizing the importance of Zakharova’s remarks.
Events over the past several weeks have led Russian officials to distrust Secretary of State John Kerry. Indeed, Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov, who parses his words carefully, has publicly expressed that distrust. Some Russian officials suspect that Kerry has been playing a double game; others believe that, however much he may strive for progress through diplomacy, he cannot deliver on his commitments because the Pentagon undercuts him every time. We believe that this lack of trust is a challenge that must be overcome and that, at this point, only you can accomplish this.
It should not be attributed to paranoia on the Russians’ part that they suspect the Sept. 17 U.S. and Australian air attacks on Syrian army troops that killed 62 and wounded 100 was no “mistake,” but rather a deliberate attempt to scuttle the partial cease-fire Kerry and Lavrov had agreed on – with your approval and that of President Putin – that took effect just five days earlier.
In public remarks bordering on the insubordinate, senior Pentagon officials showed unusually open skepticism regarding key aspects of the Kerry-Lavrov deal. We can assume that what Lavrov has told his boss in private is close to his uncharacteristically blunt words on Russian NTV on Sept. 26:
“My good friend John Kerry … is under fierce criticism from the US military machine. Despite the fact that, as always, [they] made assurances that the US Commander in Chief, President Barack Obama, supported him in his contacts with Russia (he confirmed that during his meeting with President Vladimir Putin), apparently the military does not really listen to the Commander in Chief.”
Lavrov’s words are not mere rhetoric. He also criticized JCS Chairman Joseph Dunford for telling Congress that he opposed sharing intelligence with Russia, “after the agreements concluded on direct orders of Russian President Vladimir Putin and US President Barack Obama stipulated that they would share intelligence. … It is difficult to work with such partners. …”" (my bold)

This tells us something very important; there is a very significant policy difference between the White House and the Pentagon when it comes to Syria.  Recent developments in Syria strongly suggest that there is a direct conflict between military and civilian leadership in the United States.
Let's go back to the open letter:
"The door to further negotiations remains ajar. In recent days, officials of the Russian foreign and defense ministries, as well as President Putin’s spokesman, have carefully avoided shutting that door, and we find it a good sign that Secretary Kerry has been on the phone with Foreign Minister Lavrov. And the Russians have also emphasized Moscow’s continued willingness to honor previous agreements on Syria.
In the Kremlin’s view, Russia has far more skin in the game than the U.S. does. Thousands of Russian dissident terrorists have found their way to Syria, where they obtain weapons, funding, and practical experience in waging violent insurgency. There is understandable worry on Moscow’s part over the threat they will pose when they come back home. In addition, President Putin can be assumed to be under the same kind of pressure you face from the military to order it to try to clean out the mess in Syria “once and for all,” regardless how dim the prospects for a military solution are for either side in Syria.
We are aware that many in Congress and the “mainstream” media are now calling on you to up the ante and respond – overtly or covertly or both – with more violence in Syria. Shades of the “Washington Playbook,” about which you spoke derisively in interviews with the Atlantic’s Jeffrey Goldberg earlier this year. We take some encouragement in your acknowledgment to Goldberg that the “playbook” can be “a trap that can lead to bad decisions” – not to mention doing “stupid stuff.”
Goldberg wrote that you felt the Pentagon had “jammed” you on the troop surge for Afghanistan seven years ago and that the same thing almost happened three years ago on Syria, before President Putin persuaded Syria to surrender its chemical weapons for destruction. It seems that the kind of approach that worked then should be tried now, as well – particularly if you are starting to feel jammed once again.
Incidentally, it would be helpful toward that end if you had one of your staffers tell the “mainstream” media to tone down it puerile, nasty – and for the most part unjustified and certainly unhelpful – personal vilification of President Putin.
Renewing direct dialogue with President Putin might well offer the best chance to ensure an end, finally, to unwanted “jamming.” We believe John Kerry is correct in emphasizing how frightfully complicated the disarray in Syria is amid the various vying interests and factions. At the same time, he has already done much of the necessary spadework and has found Lavrov for the most part, a helpful partner...
...Therefore, we strongly recommend that you invite President Putin to meet with you in a mutually convenient place, in order to try to sort things out and prevent still worse for the people of Syria.
In the wake of the carnage of World War II, Winston Churchill made an observation that is equally applicable to our 21st Century: “To jaw, jaw, jaw, is better than to war, war, war.”"
The recent developments in Syria and the degradation of


Prosecutors who withhold or tamper with evidence now face felony charges

The office of Orange County Dist. Atty. Tony Rackauckas was removed from one of its most high-profile cases: the prosecution of mass murderer Scott Dekraai. The judge said prosecutors repeatedly violated Dekraai’s rights by failing to turn over evidence.

October 3, 2016, 10:00 p.m.
Amid an ongoing controversy in the Orange County courthouse involving accusations of prosecutorial misconduct, a new law will r


Encryption App Signal Wins Fight Against FBI Subpoena And Gag ...
The Daily Dot-Oct 4, 2016
Signal, widely considered the gold standard of encrypted messaging apps, was put to the test earlier this year when a FBI subpoena and gag ...


Ed Klein Reveals Bombshell Facts About Hillary FBI Investigation
Christopher N. Malagisi |Posted: Oct 05, 2016 7:30 A

In our “Part One” bombshell interview with author Ed Klein, he reveals stunning secrets about what really happened in the Hillary FBI email investigation case, and what role FBI Director James Comey really played in all of it.  These shocking revelations are all detailed in his new book, Guilty As Sin, published by Regnery Publishing, and is featured as the Conservative Book Club’s Editor’s Pick of the Week.

Learn the truth about the FBI investigation into Hillary Clinton’s email server, what health issues she’s really facing, and what Bill Clinton did to try and intimidate the Justice Department to not prosecute Hillary.  You won’t believe what Ed Klein discovered in his in-depth research.

Ed Klein is the former editor of The New York Times Magazine, and is currently an editor with Vanity Fair.  He’s written numerous books about Hillary and Bill Clinton and releases his new book, Guilty as Sin, right before the consequential November elections!

Listen to our Part One exclusive author interview with Ed Klein be


Yahoo email surveillance: who approved the secret scanning ...
The Guardian-
By what legal authority do the National Security Agency and the FBI ask Yahoo ... It also appears very similar to programs the FBI uses to pursue child abusers.


Ex-FBI agent took on FBI to fight for equality - The Santa Fe New Mexican: ...
The Santa Fe New Mexican › news › ex-f...
Jan 4, 2014 - Bernardo 'Mat' Perez, 74, former FBI agent who sued the agency in 1987 in a landmark discrimination case, is now retired from the bureau and ...


Republicans blast FBI for 'astonishing' agreement to destroy Clinton aides' laptops
Published October 05, 2016
FBI destroyed laptops of Clinton aides after reviewing
Top-ranking Republicans on Wednesday escalated their inquiry into a controversial FBI agreement to destroy the laptops of two Hillary Clinton aides questioned in the email scandal investigation, pressing Attorney General Loretta Lynch for answers and suggesting the deal obstructed congressional investigators.

The agreement to destroy the computers, the lawmakers wrote Wednesday in a letter to Lynch, “is simply astonishing given the likelihood that evidence on the laptops would be of interest


Revealed: The FBI's Secret Methods for Recruiting Informants at the ...
The Intercept-
The FBI and U.S. Customs and Border Protection work closely together to turn these vulnerabilities into opportunities for gathering intelligence, ..


New FBI Head in San Francisco Was Key Figure in iPhone Hack
ABC News-Oct 4, 2016
In this photo taken Tuesday, Sept. 27, 2016, FBI Special Agent Jack Bennett answers a question while posing in one of the bureau's ...


FBI recruiting over 700 college students and recent graduates

William Woods, the special agent in Charge of the FBI St. Louis Division, joins us this morning to tell us about the FBI`s new collegiate hiring ...


Did Sheriff spend money allocated for crime
fighting misuse funds?


FBI Releases One Final Data Dump About Hillary Clinton's Email Affair
Mother Jones-Oct 3, 2016
A few weeks ago the FBI released its final report on Hillary Clinton's private email server. I commented on it here. But it turns out there's more


Ex-NYPD SVU cop accused of groping woman 'chuckled' during attack
NEW YORK DAILY NEWS Updated: Thursday, October 6, 2016, 6:42 PM


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Posts: 8,845
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Dante always reserved a special place in Hell for Climate Change deniers

from a never meteorologist to ever deniers


just in from Robert Scribbler’s website
Major Hurricane Maria Could Hit 150 Mph+ Intensity as it Barrels Toward Puerto Rico
As of early afternoon on September 18, Hurricane Maria had reached major hurricane intensity of 125 mph maximum sustained winds and a 956 mb minimum central pressure. Moving west-northwest at 10 mph, the storm is tracking through already the hurricane-weary eastern Caribbean islands on a path toward a Puerto Rico still recovering from its close brush with Category 5 Hurricane Irma.

(National Hurricane Center’s [NHC] projected path and intensity for Maria shows a major hurricane threatening Puerto Rico over the next two days. Image source: NHC.)

Maria is expected to track over very warm Caribbean waters in the range of 84 to 86 degrees Fahrenheit (29+ C) as it enters a favorable atmospheric environment. And forecasters now call for Maria to rapidly intensify. Hurricane watches have already been issued for the American territory of Puerto Rico. And the present official Hurricane Center track and forecast intensity for Maria (see above image) shows a severe blow by a powerful category 4 storm striking somewhere along southeastern Puerto Rico early Wednesday with maximum sustained winds of 150 mph.

2017 Already a Season for the Record Books

It’s worth noting that some models presently show Maria tracking north of Puerto Rico. So the island could still avoid a direct hit. But the current official consensus is a rather grim forecast.

(IR satellite imagery of Maria shows an increasingly organized storm. Forecast points and sea surface temperatures included for reference. Image source: National Hurricane Center.)

Maria is the fourth major hurricane to form in the Atlantic during 2017 — which has been an exceptional season in many respects. This year saw the early formation of Arlene in April — only the second named storm recorded to have formed during that month. It saw the strongest hurricane ever to form outside of the Carribbean or Gulf of Mexico — Irma — which was also tied as the strongest land falling hurricane in the Atlantic. Both Category 4 Harvey and Irma struck the continental U.S. — the first time two Cat 4 storms have struck the states in a single month. And Harvey produced the heaviest recorded rainfall total from a tropical system at 51.88 inches. Overall damage estimates from the 2017 Atlantic hurricane season presently stand at 132 billion dollars — which makes this season the second costliest so far (behind 2005).

How Climate Change and Other Global Factors Contributed

With damages from Harvey and Irma still uncounted, with Maria barreling in, and with a week and a half left to September and all of October remaining, it’s likely that 2017 will see more to come. Though Irma and Jose have churned up cooler waters in their wakes, large sections of the Gulf, Caribbean, and North Atlantic remain considerably warmer than normal.

(Sea surface temperature anomaly map shows that much of the North Atlantic and Carribbean are between 0.5 and 2 C warmer than the already warmer than normal 30-year average. Image source: Earth Nullschool.)

Meanwhile, a very vigorous Inter-Tropical-Convergence-Zone (ITCZ) is still producing powerful thunderstorms over Africa. And cool water upwelling in the Pacific has generated La Nina-like conditions that tend to cut down on Atlantic wind shear — allowing more storms to fully develop and tap those warmer than normal waters to reach higher maximum intensities. Some of these factors — particularly the warmer than normal surface waters and possibly the increased intensity of ITCZ thunderstorms are climate change related. So yes, statements from those like Dr. Michael Mann claiming that this season’s hurricanes were made worse by climate change are absolutely valid.



Blink Tank

Slim and Dave Mallett have written and performed
some music I will be using in my Doc about Robert Shetterly

check them out



Man allegedly wears clown mask to chase daughter, nearby witness fires gun
NEW YORK DAILY NEWS Monday, September 18, 2017, 10:20 AM
 This father took his scare way too far.

Vernon Barrett, Jr., a father from Boardman, Ohio, allegedly donned a clown mask and chased his daughter down the street, in an effort to scare and discipline her, according to WKBN.

This comes as the 6-year-old’s mother was reportedly jailed for child endangerment — in allegedly breaking four of the girl’s ribs.

As Barrett scared his daughter, she reportedly jumped into a stranger’s car and then entered a stranger’s apartment. She shouted about a clown trailing right behind her, according to police, as relayed by WKBN.


Preet Bhararas new podcast to take on justice issues, Trump

September 18, 2017 | UPDATED 18:15 IST

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Half-way to Catastrophe — Global Hothouse Extinction to be Triggered by or Before 2100 Without Rapid Emissions Cuts
Over recent years, concern about a coming hothouse mass extinction set off by human carbon emissions has been on the rise. Studies of Earth’s deep history reveal that at least 4 out of the 5 major mass extinctions occurred during both hothouse periods and during times when atmospheric and oceanic carbon spiked to much higher than normal ranges. Now a new scientific study reveals that we are have already emitted 50 percent of the carbon needed to set off such a major global catastrophe.

Fossil Fuel Burning = Race Toward a 6th Mass Extinction

The primary driver of these events is rising atmospheric CO2 levels — often caused in the past by the emergence of masses of volcanoes or large flood basalt provinces (LIP in image below). In the case of the worst mass extinction — the Permian — the Siberian flood basalts were thought to have injected magma into peat and coal formations which then injected a very large amount of carbon dioxide into the Earth’s atmosphere and oceans.

(In the Earth’s deep past, the worst global mass extinctions were driven by large igneous provinces like the eruptions across Siberia during the Permian. The initial killing mechanism during these extinctions was a result of the upshot ocean anoxia, acidification, and biochemistry change. During the Permian, effects eventually spilled over to land and possibly the upper atmosphere. Today’s human carbon emissions will ultimately produce worse impacts over shorter time scales than the Permian. Image source: Skeptical Science and The History of Seawater Carbonate Chemistry, Atmospheric CO2, and Ocean Acidification.)

Higher atmospheric and ocean carbon drove both environmental and geochemical changes — ultimately setting off hyperthermal temperature spikes and ocean anoxic events that were possibly assisted by methane hydrate releases and other climate and geophysical feedbacks. The net result of these events was major species die-offs in the ocean and, during the worst events, on land.

Considering the fact that present human activities, primarily through fossil fuel burning, are releasing vast quantities of carbon into the Earth’s atmosphere and oceans at a rate never before seen in the geological past, it appears that the world is racing toward another major mass extinction. In the past, the location of this dangerous precipice was a bit murky. But a recent study in Science Advances attempts to better define the threshold at which the worst of the worst mass extinction events — set off by rising ocean and atmospheric carbon — occur.

310 Billion Tons Carbon Entering Ocean = Mass Extinction Threshold

The study used a relatively easy to identify marker — ocean carbon uptake — in an attempt to identify a boundary limit at which such mass extinctions tend to occur. And the study found that when about 310 billion tons of carbon gets taken in by the oceans, a critical boundary is crossed and a global mass extinction event is likely to occur.

Presently, human beings are dumping carbon into the atmosphere at an extremely high rate of around 11 billion tons per year. Today, about 2.6 billion tons per year of this carbon ends up in the ocean. In total, since 1850, humans have added about 155 billion tons of carbon to the Earth’s oceans — leaving us with about another 155 billion tons before Rothman’s (the study author) extinction threshold is crossed.

(Thresholds of Catastrophe in the Earth System finds that present carbon emissions bring us about halfway to the global mass extinction boundary limit. That carbon emissions cuts need to be more aggressive than the most aggressive present international policy scenario to reliably avoid risk of setting off a global mass extinction event.)

At the presently high rate of fossil fuel burning and greenhouse gas emissions from humans, that gives us about 60 years. This is true even if emissions levels remain steady and do not increase. If emissions increase along a business as usual pathway, we could cross that threshold by or before the 2050s. And under all present emissions scenarios identified by international climate policy, the 310 billion ton threshold is either closely approached or greatly exceeded by 2100.

This should set off warning bells for global governments and climate policy advocates alike. What it means is that halting fossil fuel burning and transitioning to renewable energy needs to occur at rather swift rates — with annual global carbon emissions peaking within the next 1-10 years and then rapidly diminishing to zero — if we are to avoid a high risk of setting off another major global mass extinction. Of course, this does not mean that such a response will avoid harmful climate impacts — a number of which have already been locked in. Just that such a major response would be needed to avoid a high risk of setting off a catastrophic global mass extinction event equal to some of the worst in all of Earth’s deep history.

Rapid Movement Toward Terrible Long-Term Global Consequences

The study notes that past major extinctions like the Permian occurred on 10,000 to 100,000 year time-scales. And that during these events the changes inflicted upon the global environment by major carbon additions to the ocean and atmosphere occurred too swiftly for organisms to adapt. The pace of human carbon addition is presently faster than even during the Permian — the worst mass extinction event. So if this very large carbon spike were to continue it has the potential to set off impacts as bad, or worse than the Permian and over much shorter time horizons.

The study also notes that it takes about 10,000 years for the worst impacts of a mass extinction carbon spike to be fully realized. So hitting the 310 billion ton threshold by or before 2100 runs a high risk of consigning the world to many, many centuries of increasingly worsening climate impacts.


Thresholds of Catastrophe in the Earth System

History of Seawater Carbonate Chemistry, Atmospheric CO2, and Ocean Acidification

Today’s Climate Change is More Comparable to Earth’s Worst Mass Extinction


MIT Unveils Framework to ID Extreme-Weather Patterns

September 22, 2017


Subject: Freedom of Information Request: Course Attendees/Requestees
To Whom It May Concern:

This is a request under the Freedom of Information Act. I hereby request the following records:

I would like a copy of any and all requests from local or state law enforcement agencies wishing to hold a FLETC course in their own jurisdiction, or near their own jurisdiction. This can be in the form of any written communications, including email. The date range I would like searched for is 1/1/12 to the date this request is processed.

I would also like any breakdowns, intra-agency reports, summaries, or logs of the law enforcement agencies that have used FLETC to train officers from 1/1/12 to the date this request is processed on. I do not need reports from each department, I am only looking for compilations of the departments that have used FLETC to train officers.

The following is a list of courses I would like specifically searched for, to limit my search:
-Active Shooter Threat Training Program
-Advanced Instruction for Marksmanship
-All Terrain Vehicle Training Program
-Advanced Pistol Training Program
-Continuing Legal Education Training Program-Uniformed Police
-Covert Electronic Tracking Program
-Internet Investigations Training Program
-Introduction to Digital Evidence Analysis
-Mobile Device Investigations Program
-Use of Force Instructor Training Program
-Land Transportation Antiterrorism Training Program

As a member of the news media working for MuckRock News I request that a fee waiver for my request be granted. My work has been published by national outlets. My work for Motherboard can be viewed at the following link: http://motherboard.vice.com/author/cwaltman

The requested documents will be made available to the general public, and this request is not being made for commercial purposes.

In the event that there are fees, I would be grateful if you would inform me of the total charges in advance of fulfilling my request. I would prefer the request filled electronically, by e-mail attachment if available or CD-ROM if not.

Thank you in advance for your anticipated cooperation in this matter. I look forward to receiving your response to this request within 20 business days, as the statute requires.


Curtis Waltman


Betsy DeVos does away with Obama-era rules for probing college sexual assaults under Title IX
NEW YORK DAILY NEWS Updated: Friday, September 22, 2017, 11:51 AM


Teacher fired after showing third graders how to give Nazi salute
NEW YORK DAILY NEWS Friday, September 22, 2017, 11:52 AM


Snapchat video shows Florida childcare workers taunting, throwing objects at boy with autism
NEW YORK DAILY NEWS Friday, September 22, 2017, 10:01 AM


VA psychiatrist who had sex with veteran could face 20 years for witness tampering, U.S. attorney says
Psychiatrist who had sex with veteran could face 20 years for witness tampering


Some parts of Maine may see 90° by Monday, fall temps arrive late week, Maria likely a miss


Off-duty NYPD school crossing guard, 70, busted for attacking husband
NEW YORK DAILY NEWS Saturday, September 23, 2017, 9:49 AM

Link du jour






Police Reports Suggest Dem IT Scandal Ringleader Abused Several Muslim Immigrant Women


Immunity Denied for Sheriff’s Deputy Who Shot & Killed Teen

September 22, 2017

A Sonoma County sheriff’s deputy must face civil claims from the family of a 13-year-old boy he killed after mistaking the boy’s toy rifle for an AK-47, the Ninth Circuit ruled Friday.

On Oct. 22, 2013, the afternoon he was shot and killed, school was out for the day and Andy Lopez was walking on a Santa Rosa sidewalk to his friend’s house.

The toy gun Lopez was swinging at his side was missing the orange tip that designates it as a replica, but expert witnesses for the police in the case have conceded that officers were far enough away at the time of the shooting that they would be unable to distinguish the tip in any case.

Sheriff’s Deputy Erick Gelhaus was on a routine patrol with his partner when he observed Lopez from a distance of 100 yards.

In 20 seconds, Gelhaus’ partner had spun their vehicle around and chirped the siren while Gelhaus propelled himself from the car, ordered Lopez to drop the weapon, and fired eight shots.

Seven of those shots hit Lopez in the chest, and he died at the scene.

After Chief U.S. District Judge Phillis Hamilton advanced civil claims by Lopez’s family against Gelhaus in Oakland last year, the deputy appealed to the Ninth Circuit.

Rejecting that bid Friday, a divided three-judge panel determined that “a reasonable jury could conclude that Gelhaus deployed excessive force in violation of the Fourth Amendment.”

“Additionally, the alleged violation of Andy’s Fourth Amendment right was clearly established at the time of Gelhaus’s conduct,” U.S. Circuit Judge Milan Smith Jr. wrote for the majority.

Senior U.S. Circuit Judge J. Clifford Wallace wrote in dissent that the majority improperly discounted evidence that the barrel of Lopez’s toy gun was beginning to rise as he turned around to look at Gelhaus.

Wallace accuses the majority of employing a “distorted reading” of the lower court’s decision, emphasizing that that court had found that the gun “was beginning to rise” as the boy turned to face Gelhaus and his partner, which lead the officer to believe they were in “imminent danger.”

“The majority opinion exhaustively recounts the facts of the case, but for me, they are largely irrelevant,” Wallace wrote. “One critical fact — the upward motion of the fake gun — resolves the qualified immunity issue in Deputy Gelhaus’s favor.”

Smith’s opinion meanwhile says a reasonable jury could conclude that Lopez’s gun “never rose to a position that posed any threat to the officers.”

“The dissent’s accusations are as seismic as they are unconvincing,” the majority opinion states.

Smith accused Wallace of falsely reframing the incident as a “duel” between the teen and deputy, who “avoided imminent peril only by firing at Andy just before Andy fired at him.”

He chided Wallace as well for ignoring the evidence that Lopez had not threatened or acted aggressively toward Gelhaus and his partner.

“The dissent also apparently believes that the district court not only made this factual finding, but then made the rather inexplicable decision to ignore this obvious threat in its qualified immunity analysis,” Smith said with regard to the “duel.”

“To be sure, if those were the facts, it would be hard to see how the district court could have denied summary judgment on the Fourth Amendment claim and on qualified immunity,” Smith added. “But those were not the facts the district court found.”

Noah Blechman, an attorney for Gelhaus with McNamara Ney Beatty Slattery Borges & Ambacher, disagreed with the majority’s assessment.

“In this scenario there was no time for the officers to determine exactly his intentions before he turned around and the gun started coming up and around towards the officers,” Walnut Creek-based Blechman said in an interview.

The dissent by Wallace claims that there was no evidence to support “speculation,” based on three-dimensional models of Lopez’s movements presented by an expert for the family, that the gun had stopped rising by the time Gelhaus fired.

“In reaching the opposite conclusion, the majority accuses me of making an assumption regarding this fact that is improper at the summary judgment stage,” Wallace said. “I have done no such thing. In fact … it is the majority whose position is unsupported by the record.”

Gerald Peters, an attorney for the Lopez family based in Thousand Oaks, blasted the dissent as coming from a “law-and-order judge appointed by Richard Nixon.”

“The justice didn’t consider at all that Gelhaus shot Andy seven times, which was sort of remarkable,” Peters said of Wallace. “It was purely the gun coming up, therefore he had the right to shoot.”


ACLU Says St. Louis Police ‘Kettling’ Violated Protesters’ Rights

September 22, 2017

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Alice Speri
October 16 2017, 2:35 p.m.



Snowden Filmmaker Received All Public FOIA Docs, FBI Says


New York (October 16, 2017, 9:04 PM EDT) -- The FBI and U.S. Customs and Border Protection told a D.C. federal court Friday that they’ve provided filmmaker Laura Poitras with all information available under the Freedom of Information Act related to why she was continually detained at airport security checkpoints for six years, fighting her allegation that they’re wrongly withholding information.

In an August bid for summary judgment, Poitras said the FBI has wrongly claimed documents were subject to a law enforcement exemption in FOIA, when the documents were actually used for intelligence gathering, and...





'Riot King' Brian Rossomanno Has Become the Police Department's Protest Hammer

St. Louis police Sergeant Brian Rossomanno is known as an expert tactician, but tonight he has been outflanked. The cop nicknamed "Riot King" is surrounded — kettled, you might say — by a group of protesters bearing down on his SUV.

"Who do you protect?" the protesters shout in unison. "Who do you serve?"

It is just after dark, about 8 p.m. on September 28. Rossomanno, a linebacker-sized SWAT leader and former Marine, is parked about twenty yards short of the Tucker Boulevard intersection where, eleven days ago, he helped corral and arrest 123 people, including protesters, journalists and neighborhood residents. Officers were recorded on video filmed by livestreamer Rebelutionary Z as they manhandled people who had already surrendered, pepper sprayed people on their knees.

"It's going to be like this every night," witnesses say Rossomanno warned that night.

State Representative Bruce Franks (D-St. Louis) has just watched video of the arrests, and he is upset.

"When they did what they did, they called it 'kettling,'" Franks says over a bullhorn. "They said they 'kettled' them."

The kinetic 33-year-old lawmaker has been on the front lines of the protests every day since September 15, when a white ex-St. Louis cop named Jason Stockley was found not guilty of murdering Anthony Lamar Smith, a black 24-year-old whom he suspected of making a parking-lot drug deal.

With images of the kettle fresh in his head, Franks thinks it is time for Rossomanno to understand what it is like to be surrounded, penned in with no escape route. By the time he and several dozen marchers swarm to the front and sides of the sergeant's white-and-blue Chevrolet Tahoe, a second, smaller band of protesters has already fanned across the street behind the vehicle, blocking it in. For the next twelve minutes or so, the crowd is in the officer's face, shouting at him from all sides. A woman holds a sign in front of his windshield that says "My Son Matters" above a "Black Lives Matter" hashtag.

Sgt. Brian Rossomanno speaks into his radio as protesters 'kettle' him on Sept. 28 in downtown St. Louis.
Rossomanno has a long face and bags under his eyes that give him the melancholy expression of a cartoon hound dog. As he sits in the SUV, he alternates between speaking into his radio and holding up his phone to film the protesters.

"Fire Rossomanno!" the crowd shouts. "Fire Rossomanno!"

Riot King holds the loudspeaker mic in front of his mouth and begins what has become a familiar refrain: "This is an unlawful assembly. This is an order to disperse." He warns that those who linger are subject to arrest. He threatens to deploy "chemical munitions."

This is a big part of how Rossomanno earned his nickname. The frequent threats. The reminders that arrests, pepper spray or worse are subject to his whims. The protesters do not call him Riot King because he responds to riots; it is because, they say, he brings the riot.

He seems to have embraced the image. On the Facebook page for his side business, a company that provides security details and training, the caption below a picture of him included the hashtags #riotking and #protestseason. The post was only removed after livestreamer Heather De Mian, who had taken the photo, complained on Twitter about him pilfering her work.

And yet what galls many protesters about Rossomanno isn't just that he's mercurial; it's that he simply isn't effective. Not only is he prone to inflame tempers on the street, they say, but his aggression actually fuels further action.

Take tonight, for example. Other supervisors assigned to monitor the near-daily marches have mostly avoided these situations simply by putting their vehicles in reverse and driving up the street a bit. As long as the demonstrations are non-violent, as tonight's has been, the idea is to maintain enough distance to avoid needless confrontations. Rossomanno, however, remained defiantly in the middle of the street as the crowd approached. Now it is too late to drive away. He sits cocooned behind the wheel, working his radio and awaiting backup.

Sgt. Randy Jemerson tries to calm protesters mobbing the car of his colleague.
Sgt. Randy Jemerson is among the first to arrive. A stoic professional, he joined the department in November 1997 as part of the same class as Rossomanno and is also a SWAT leader and tactics instructor. But where protesters have come to see his counterpart as temperamental and vindictive, Jemerson is respected as a calming influence.

He starts by working his way to the driver's side window of the Tahoe, making himself a human barrier between the crowd and Rossomanno while he quietly explains to protesters that they have put him in a bad position by surrounding a police vehicle.

But as Jemerson works to de-escalate, there is a new antagonism from the east. A line of riot police with shields, helmets and batons starts to march across Tucker toward the demonstrators. The helmeted troops step in unison, chanting "move back, move back," until they reach the mouth of Washington and stop. The crowd leaves the Tahoe and goes to meet them, freeing the cop from the kettle.

But Rossomanno is not the type to make a graceful retreat. Now that he's no longer boxed in, he opens his car door and calls out to Franks.

"Mr. Franks, you're wanted for assault on a law enforcement officer," he says.

Franks is in disbelief. Assault on a law enforcement officer? When? Where?

"You hit me on the arm," Rossomanno says. "We've got it on tape."

The accusation touches off another flurry of shouting. Franks angrily denies assaulting anyone. He yells at the highest-ranking officer on the scene, Major John Hayden, to get control of his sergeant. After more shouting, the focus shifts back to the front line, where protest organizers are ushering demonstrators onto the sidewalk even as they demand the riot police retreat across the intersection.

A force of at least two dozen St. Louis County police officers has arrived, dressed in helmets and heavy tactical gear. A few carry the bright orange "less lethal" shotguns capable of firing bean bag rounds. Some protesters worry that police are setting the stage for yet another kettle.

Rossomanno, now with a small army surrounding him, chats with an elderly woman at the edge of the street. He has apparently abandoned the assault claim against Franks and is telling the woman just how lenient he has been.

"Right now, we have every legal right to start snatching people," he says.

The woman is hoping for peace. No protester has thrown anything or broken any windows. Really, all they did was circle his Tahoe and yell at him.

"If you surround a police car and starting banging on it, that's going to elicit a response," Rossomanno says.

Jemerson has continued to work back and forth between the crowds and the police line. Eventually, with protesters on the sidewalk, the riot police retreat back across the intersection, draining the tension as they go. The crowd goes the other way. They chant "united we stand, united we fall," and march past the county cops still holding those orange shotguns.

The mood is bright as they turn left and downtown opens up. Soon a new chant begins: "Fuck Rossomanno!
Rossomanno has a long face and bags under his eyes that give him the melancholy expression of a cartoon hound dog. As he sits in the SUV, he alternates between speaking into his radio and holding up his phone to film the protesters.

"Fire Rossomanno!" the crowd shouts. "Fire Rossomanno!"

Riot King holds the loudspeaker mic in front of his mouth and begins what has become a familiar refrain: "This is an unlawful assembly. This is an order to disperse." He warns that those who linger are subject to arrest. He threatens to deploy "chemical munitions."

This is a big part of how Rossomanno earned his nickname. The frequent threats. The reminders that arrests, pepper spray or worse are subject to his whims. The protesters do not call him Riot King because he responds to riots; it is because, they say, he brings the riot.



Former U.S. Attorney Amanda Marshall faces state ethics investigation for having sex




Ryan Devereaux, Spencer Woodman
October 13 2017, 7:58 a.m.
Photo: Bizuayehu Tesfaye/Bloomberg/Getty Images
AN INTERNAL HANDBOOK obtained by The Intercept provides a rare view into the extensive asset seizure operations of ICE’s Homeland Security Investigations, an office that trains its agents to meticulously appraise the value of property before taking it.

HSI’s 71-page “Asset Forfeiture Handbook,” dated June 30, 2010, underscores the role seizures play in “helping to fund future law enforcement actions” and covering costs “that HSI would otherwise be unable to fund.” It thus offers an unprecedented window into ICE’s wide-ranging asset forfeiture operations and the premium the agency places on seizing valuable property. Forfeiture proceeds can bolster ICE’s partnerships with local police departments, which are now the subject of heightened debate given the Trump administration’s hard-line immigration agenda.

ICE confirmed to The Intercept that the handbook reflects the agency’s most up-to-date guidance on asset forfeiture. Agents under its instruction are asked to weigh the competing priorities of law enforcement versus financial profit and to “not waste instigative time and resources” on assets it calls “liabilities” — which include properties that are not profitable enough for the federal government to justify seizing. “As a general rule, if total liabilities and costs incurred in seizing a real property or business exceed the value of the property, the property should not be seized,” the document states.

The handbook also instructs ICE agents on the various ways laws can be used to justify the seizure of a property, and devotes a significant portion of its pages to the seizure of real estate. The manual instructs agents seeking to seize a property to work with confidential informants, scour tax records, and even obtain an interception warrant to determine whether “a telephone located on the property was used to plan or discuss criminal activity” in order to justify seizing the property.

The handbook acknowledges that civil forfeiture can be used to take property from a person even when there’s not enough evidence for a criminal indictment. There “may be third party interest that would prevail in a criminal case, but would not survive in a civil proceeding, making the civil proceeding essential to forfeiture,” the handbook states, referencing a property owner not officially implicated in a crime. “Those situations generally occur when a property owner is not convicted of a crime but is also not an innocent owner. Under criminal forfeiture, that property owner would be entitled to the return of the property. Under civil forfeiture, however, the owner would lose his or her interest to the Government.”

Noting that ICE is not alone among federal agencies in relying on asset forfeiture, ICE spokesperson Danielle Bennett told The Intercept in a statement, “Asset forfeiture is an essential element of comprehensive and effective law enforcement as it deprives transnational criminal organizations of their illicitly obtained assets. The forfeiture of assets can be and is utilized as a sanction in criminal, civil, and administrative investigative activities.”

HIDALGO, TX - MAY 28: Special agents from Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) search a vehicle heading into Mexico at the Hidalgo border crossing on May 28, 2010 in Hidalgo, Texas. The inspection was part of a Department of Homeland Security (DHS) joint effort between ICE, Customs and Border Protection (CBP) and Customs and Border Patrol. The organizations are trying to slow the flow of guns, money and drugs from the United State into Mexico. (Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images)
ICE special agents search a vehicle heading into Mexico at the Hidalgo border crossing on May 28, 2010, in Hidalgo, Texas. Photo: Scott Olson/Getty Images
THE DEPARTMENT OF Homeland Security has seized billions of dollars in assets over the last decade, with the bulk of the revenue coming from investigations overseen by ICE. While the agency is best known for its role in immigration enforcement — carried out chiefly by officers in its Enforcement and Removal Operations division — its lesser-known HSI component has a much broader mandate, enforcing more than 400 criminal statutes with a nexus between cross-border crime and transnational criminal organizations, including human trafficking and smuggling, child pornography, terrorism, counterfeit goods, and drug smuggling. With more than 6,000 agents working in 185 field offices across the country and 63 locations overseas, HSI has the second-largest number of federal agents on the FBI’s Joint Terrorism Task Forces and has played a key role in numerous high-stakes investigations over the years. To fulfill its missions, which often involve undercover infiltrations, multi-year probes, and occasionally multimillion-dollar seizures, HSI agents have access to powerful intelligence and data systems that link federal law enforcement to the CIA and the Pentagon’s Defense Intelligence Agency.
Despite its size and the sweeping scope of its work, HSI has managed to maintain a low profile in comparison to some of its federal counterparts. With the Trump White House turning virtually every undocumented immigrant in the country into a target for deportation, ICE’s role in law enforcement has become a topic of intense public debate and increasingly pulled HSI out of the shadows. The handbook obtained by The Intercept now offers a unique window into a key component of the agency’s quiet investigations.

Every year, DHS seizes millions of dollars in assets through the course of investigations — everything from cash and houses, to boats and cars. Those assets are directed into a forfeiture fund maintained by the Treasury Department. The revenue from the assets is then used to cover a range of costs related to forfeiture investigations, from storing actual seized items to paying informants. Under a program known as equitable sharing, the revenue is also used to award and reimburse state and local law enforcement agencies that participate in federal seizure-related investigations, which those agencies then use to purchase equipment, weapons, and other law enforcement technology.

Though multiple DHS agencies contribute to the Treasury forfeiture fund — such as Customs and Border Protection and the Secret Service — ICE leads the way both in seizures feeding into the fund and in payments doled out to state and local law enforcement. According to a 2014 report by the U.S. Government Accountability Office, from 2003 to 2013, DHS poured roughly $3.6 billion into the Treasury’s forfeiture fund. From 2007 on, the report found, ICE was “consistently” responsible for “approximately 50 percent or more of total forfeiture revenues by DHS components.” Over the 2003 to 2013 period, the GAO noted, “equitable sharing payments constituted the largest” obligation in the Treasury’s forfeiture fund, with approximately $1.2 billion paid out to “a range of state and local law enforcement agencies across the country — as well as other federal agencies and foreign entities — that participated in law enforcement efforts resulting in forfeitures.”

“Among the three DHS components making equitable sharing payments, ICE made up over 90 percent of total DHS obligations for equitable sharing payments,” the report added. “State and local agencies accounted for the majority of sharing recipients, and accounted for an average of 96 percent of total obligations for equitable sharing payments from fiscal years 2010 through 2012.” State and local law enforcement officials who spoke to the government accountability researchers said the arrangement had “improved the relationship between federal agencies and their offices,” with officials adding that the “funds are needed by their agencies and have allowed them to purchase equipment such as bulletproof vests, weapons, mobile computers, and police station security cameras.”

Robert Don Gifford, who spent more than a decade as an assistant U.S. attorney at the Justice Department before leaving for private practice last December, told The Intercept that the handbook’s discussion of using civil forfeiture when a criminal indictment isn’t possible appears to nod to a problematic practice of seizing assets largely for the sake of financial gain, although he said he did not see this practice occur on the part of any federal agency he has worked with. A notable portion of HSI cases that Gifford saw targeted small-scale sellers of counterfeit goods. Agents hoped these busts would lead them to larger counterfeiting operations — “not exactly the stuff of Al Capone,” Gifford said.

“I had one case where they wanted to do all these forfeitures, and I said absolutely not,” Gifford recalled. “I said I’d support it as long as it was not a retired mom and pop running a little flea market table on the weekend,” Gifford said. “But that was exactly who they were going after.”

In recent years, asset forfeiture practices have come under increasing scrutiny for allegedly introducing the profit motive into the calculations of which laws to enforce and against whom.

The handbook describes a carefully cultivated network of asset forfeiture specialists within ICE, who are placed in each of HSI’s field offices across the country. These specialists are known as Asset Identification and Removal Group members and are tasked with identifying and appraising assets to seize during HSI investigations.

Stipulating that each AIRG agent must have at least three years of investigative experience, the handbook describes AIRGs as “separate, specialized groups, dedicated solely to asset forfeiture responsibilities, and not commingled with other groups or burdened with excessive collateral duties.” ICE trains its AIRG specialists to meticulously input data about assets that ICE has either seized or is considering for seizure into an interoffice asset forfeiture database, known as the Seized Assets and Case Tracking System, or SEACATS. The asset forfeiture agents also plug their forfeiture numbers into a sprawling DHS database called TECS, which allows the agency to evaluate the performance of asset officers and assign scores for their cases.





Local VFW Bans NFL Games from Its TVs; Others May Follow Suit
Posted By Elizabeth Semko on Mon, Oct 16, 2017 at 12:18 pm




DOJ Wants 6 Weeks to Hand Over Tarmac Meeting Docs
TRUNEWS (blog)-
The FBI has been hiding documents related to President Bill Clinton and ... The FD-302 form is the FBI's official document in which agents “report or summarize ...

FBI Octopus


Laxalt taps former FBI agent to deal with Nevada's opioid crisis
Las Vegas Review-Journal-11 hours ago
CARSON CITY — A retired FBI agent will be Nevada's first statewide opioid coordinator. Attorney General Aam Laxalt announced on Monday ...


Link du jour








How The CIA Staged Sham Academic Conferences To Thwart Iran's ...
Iranian-Oct 15, 2017
The FBI and CIA swarm conferences, too. At gatherings in the United States, says a former FBI agent, “foreign intelligence officers try to collect Americans; we



FBI offers reward in attack on state GOP office
The Wilson Times-
CHARLOTTE (AP) — The FBI is offering a reward for information leading to the arrest of those responsible for arson and graffiti at a North Carolina Republican ...



US Muslim Marine's family sues government over death at training camp

Raheel Siddiqui faced Islamophobic abuse at boot camp before his death which was ruled as a suicide



USA Liberty Act Won't Fix What's Most Broken with NSA Internet ...
A key legal linchpin for the National Security Agency's vast Internet surveillance program is ... Agents for the NSA, CIA, and FBI have long rifled through




FBI “Finds” Documents Related to Clinton-Lynch 2016 Tarmac ...
The New American (blog)-
“It is stunning that the FBI 'found' these Clinton-Lynch tarmac records only after we caught the agency hiding them in another lawsuit,” Judicial Watch President ...



Five unsettling FBI surveillance tips from the '40s
While undoubtedly clever, this tip doesn't properly prepare an agent for what to do when he or she is asked why they're carrying around multiple pairs of gloves ...
October 16, 2017
Five unsettling FBI surveillance tips from the ‘40s
Why ladies’ gloves were an invaluable tool in an agent’s arsenal
Written by JPat Brown
Edited by Beryl Lipton
We’ve written before about the FBI’s 1947 guide to investigatory techniques, and their heavy reliance on period-authentic casual racism. Today, we’ll be looking at the section on surveillance under false pretenses, which manages the perfect blend between adorably dated and downright creepy.

1. Impersonate a child photographer to take pictures of the mother


While plenty skeevy, this also serves as a reminder that there was a period in America where taking photos of a stranger’s child would have granted you entrance to their home rather than mace in the face.

2. Become a pornographer


No luck cracking that pornography trafficking case? Why not beat them at their own game and just traffic in pornography? Brilliant!

3. Carry men and women’s gloves on you at all times


While undoubtedly clever, this tip doesn’t properly prepare an agent for what to do when he or she is asked why they’re carrying around multiple pairs of gloves that are not theirs.

4. Impersonate a plainclothes policeman and accuse people of crimes they didn’t commit


As gross as this is, at least the FBI learned its lesson and stopped intimidating minorities.

5. Pretend to be a Harvard freshman


While this one starts out with a whimsical 22 Jump Street vibe, there’s a pretty hard turn in there where the agent 1) actually becomes friends with the subject and 2) roots around in their stuff when they’re not around. Imagine coming home to find out the college student you’ve been chatting about Intro to Psych with over breakfast was a fed trying to nick your address book. That sort of thing causes trust issues.

More Adorable Than Unsettling Bonus: Be a caricature of a journalist


Hard to get too mad at this one, as it implies that the only syndicated columnist that the Bureau was familiar with was Jimmy Breslin.

Read the full list of tips embedded below, or on the request page.

Image via FBI.gov





Does Our Digital Age Require New Fourth Amendment Rules?
New York Law Journal-
The robber who confessed to the crimes gave the FBI his own cellphone number ... An FBI agent offered expert testimony regarding the cell site data provided by ...



Despite a state law, Monroe, New York hasn’t tested all of its rape kits
by Vanessa Nason
September 27, 2017
Our request with Monroe, New York showed that, despite a new state law requiring all rape kits be tested within ten days, the police department currently has three kits that haven’t been sent to a lab for processing.
Read More

State University of New York didn’t comply with a law that required an audit of their sexual assault procedures
by Vanessa Nason
August 29, 2017
Last May, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo signed the “Enough Is Enough” law, which requires schools in the state to complete a review of compliance with standardized sexual assault policies, with a preliminary report ordered to be ready by September 1st of this year. In light of this, we filed a request with the State University of New York (SUNY), a system of public colleges comprised of 64 campuses, asking for the results of Cuomo’s audit at all SUNY campuses. SUNY responded that they had no results to show - an audit was never conducted.
Read More

Five of the best - and five of the worst - sexual assault response policies across the country
by Vanessa Nason
August 24, 2017
The care rape victims receive is entirely dependent on where the crime occurred. Good sexual assault response policies are comprised of a number of initiatives, including (but not limited to) specific officer training, a victim-centered approach, access to victim advocates, guidelines for submitting kits to labs, and victim notification. Based on what we’ve seen in our reporting so far, we’ve rounded up a list of the five best - and the five worst - sexual assault response policies across the country.
Read More

Six years after earmarking funds, Dallas has only tested half of its rape kit backlog
by Vanessa Nason
August 16, 2017
Our request for data and policies regarding the collection, maintenance, and testing of backlogged rape kits in Dallas shows that, as of May 2017, more than 1,000 kits still have not been submitted to crime labs. Of those submitted, only 50% have been tested, and just 35% of those tested have been uploaded into CODIS.
Read More

There are finally federal guidelines for testing rape kits
by Vanessa Nason
August 11, 2017
The SAFER Working Group combined authorities from local police departments, the FBI, state crime laboratories, government institutions, colleges, medical examiners, and nurses, which met for more than two years before penning the first federal guidelines for sexual assault evidence collection. This document is undeniably a step in the right direction, but will local law enforcement agencies and state and private laboratories implement these recommendations?
Read More

Lowell, Massachusetts has no data and no clear policies on sexual assault
by Vanessa Nason
July 27, 2017
In some cities, law enforcement officers follow clear guidelines on how to conduct victim interviews and handle evidence. But in Lowell, Massachusetts, the police department maintains no specific procedures regarding sexual assault response and no data on how many rape kits and haven’t been tested.
Read More

Great sexual assault evidence collection policies exist, but continue to be the exception to the rule
by Vanessa Nason
July 12, 2017
The best sexual assault policies adopted by this country’s law enforcement agencies illustrate a careful balancing act - Gardner, Massachusetts, with its victim-focused approach, a team of officers trained in handling sexual assault, and clear evidence collection policies, stands out. But until every police department in the country has these, the national backlog will continue to exist.
Read More

“Jane/John Doe” rape kits provide important medical care, but they sit untested in the backlog
by Vanessa Nason
June 19, 2017
Anonymous rape kits allow victims who choose to not press charges to receive critical medical care. But opting out of pressing charges shouldn’t preclude testing, and shouldn’t relegate the kit to sit forgotten on an evidence room shelf.
Read More

Fairbanks, the third “Most Dangerous U.S. City for Women,” wants to charge $15,000 for rape kit data
by Vanessa Nason
June 06, 2017
When we were hit with an estimated $5,000 fee for rape kit data and collection policies from Biloxi, Mississippi, we were stunned. Fees this large carry a sense of deterrence, and, with Biloxi’s rate of sexual assault being significantly above the national average, we couldn’t help but wonder if they were trying to hide something. As it turns out, Biloxi’s fee was neither an outlier nor the most expensive we’d see - Fairbanks, Alaska, which sits at number three on Forbes Magazine’s list of “Most Dangerous U.S. Cities for Women,” said their data and policies will cost us $15,000.
Read More

Biloxi wants to charge $5,000 for records on their rape kit backlog
by Vanessa Nason
May 31, 2017
In our efforts to uncover the rape kit backlog and report on the extent of untested sexual assault evidence, we often face the hurdle of public records fees. However, the Biloxi, Mississippi police department far surpassed any amount we’ve previously seen, asking for so much money as to render these documents essentially impossible to obtain.
Read More




Could a Donovan, Grimm face-off result in a Dem representative in ...
City & State
Dan Donovan and Michael Grimm – an ex-con, ex-member of Congress and ex-FBI agent – the district could produce a Democratic win. The scenario could ...



'I'm Playing My White Card': Drunk Man Berated Black Woman on St. Louis Flight

Posted By Danny Wicentowski on Mon, Oct 16, 2017 at 7:50 am




OCTOBER 15, 2017 |



Pilot boots New York activist Tamika Mallory from American Airlines flight over seat dispute
NEW YORK DAILY NEWS Sunday, October 15, 2017, 4:09 PM



Trump accuser subpoenas his campaign for all documents relating to sexual misconduct allegations
NEW YORK DAILY NEWS Sunday, October 15, 2017, 1:30 PM




Ohio sheriff's deputy resigns after racial slur accusation
Associated Press

An Ohio sheriff's deputy has resigned after being accused of using a racial slur at a Columbus bar.

Erie County deputy Justin Smith submitted his resignation letter Thursday after being placed on paid administrative leave Oct. 5.

Sheriff Paul Sigsworth said Smith was attending narcotics training in Columbus when he became intoxicated on Oct. 2 and used a racial slur while referring to a Sandusky-area attorney in front of co-workers at a bar.

Sigsworth said Smith resigned rather than face the possibility of being fired. Smith worked 13 years as an Erie County deputy and corrections officer.



Smith is not worried as there are other police departments he can find work



Trump’s pick to head the Office of National Drug Control Policy has 'troubling' ties to pharmaceutical industry
NEW YORK DAILY NEWS Sunday, October 15, 2017, 3:09 PM




A Progress Update on Reinforcing American Voting Systems




3rd largest media conglomerate in US frames story as a Liberal thang!

look at who owns the LA Times see





Liberal group: Delayed DOJ blood tests led to fatal crash

Prosecutors were waiting for the state crime lab to complete blood tests on a repeat drunken driver this summer when he struck and killed a man changing a flat tire along the interstate.

Results of the blood work could have kept Frank Schiller behind bars, canceling his bail and preventing the fatal accident, a liberal advocacy group charges. The test results were sent to prosecutors on July 11, three days after the crash and more than three months after they were submitted to the crime lab for processing.

It's impossible to know whether a judge would have revoked Schiller's bail and put him behind bars before the fatal crash if prosecutors had gotten the blood work sooner. But delays in crime lab test results almost certainly will be an issue in Republican Attorney General Brad Schimel's re-election campaign next year.

Scot Ross, director of the liberal group One Wisconsin Now, said delays have become a systemic problem under Schimel's leadership.

"This case is an example of how tragic consequences of those delays can be and how important it is that it get fixed," Ross said.

Deputy Attorney General Paul Connell said a string of court decisions allowed Schiller to remain free on bail despite multiple arrests before the crash and played a bigger role Peter Enns' death than the delay in blood work.

"There is nothing unusual about this case," DOJ spokesman Johnny Koremenos said. "The reason Mr. Schiller was out, driving around after being charged has nothing to do with the results of the toxicology report. As you know, Mr. Schiller was out on bail after being arrested on these other occasions."

Schiller was charged in Milwaukee County in March with driving under the influence. He had been convicted of drunken driving four times before. Milwaukee County Court Commissioner Grace Flynn released him the same day he was charged with the condition that he stay sober.

Less than a month later he was back in trouble, charged with drug possession and bail jumping in Washington County. He was released on a $500 cash bond only to be charged again in mid-June with drug possession in two separate Waukesha County cases. He went free on $1,000 bail on June 29.

Ten days later, on July 8, Schiller was heading east on Interstate 94 near Delafield when he tried to pass other cars on the shoulder and struck Enns, who had stopped to help another driver change a flat tire, according to court records. Prosecutors leveled a host of charges against him on July 13, including homicide by intoxicated use of a vehicle.

Blood tests in the March case were finalized on June 12 but weren't sent to Milwaukee police until July 11, three days after the crash, Koremenos said.

"There is a series of reviews and checks toxicology work must go through before being released to the submitting agency," Koremenos said. He did not elaborate. The Associated Press filed an open records request for the test results but the DOJ denied it because Schiller's case was still pending.

According to DOJ's website, the average turnaround time in 2014 for blood and other bodily fluid tests was 32 days in 2014. By 2016, Schimel's second year in office, the average turnaround time had risen to 52 days. Koremenos said so far this year the crime lab's toxicology unit's average turnaround time is 56 days.

Schimel created 11 temporary crime lab positions in August, eight weeks after Schiller's fatal crash, to speed up evidence processing. He said at the time that police submissions had risen 49 percent from 2015 to 2016 and 31 percent from 2016 to 2017. Earlier this month Schimel appointed DNA analyst Nicole Roehm to lead the crime lab. She replaced Jana Champion, who retired.

Koremenos said Champion's retirement had been scheduled and Schiller's case wasn't the impetus for the additional hires. He said the agency wasn't aware "of the intricacies of this case" until The AP inquired about it.

Milwaukee County Assistant District Jim Griffin, who is handling Schiller's March drunken driving case, didn't return messages about whether the blood results would have prompted him to seek to revoke Schiller's bail.

Schimel faces former federal prosecutor Josh Kaul in the November 2018 elections. Kaul campaign manager Ashley Viste declined comment.




Blink Tank





FBI authorized informants to break the law 22,800 times in 4 years

Dell Cameron and Patrick Howell O'Neill— Aug 23, 2016 at 1:51PM | Last updated Aug 23, 2016 at 4:49PM



Informants May Get a Pass on Murder - latimes
Los Angeles Times
Mar 16, 2003 · For decades in cities from coast to coast, FBI agents recruited killers and crime bosses as informants and then looked the other way as they continued to commit violent crimes.When the practice.



Exclusive: FBI allowed informants to commit 5,600 crimes - USA Today
USA Today › fbi-informant-crimes-report
Aug 4, 2013 · WASHINGTON — The FBI gave its informants permission to break the law at least 5,658 times in a single year, according to newly disclosed documents that show just how often the nation's ...


FBI informants who caused mayhem on the side



BOSTON – Here are 11 dangerous criminals who received a measure of protection from the FBI while serving as informants. Most informed in organized crime or political corruption cases, but a few were involved in highly political cases in the turbulent 1960s.

Details are drawn from interviews, court records and published reports.



He was a sheriff's investigator in Cook County, Ill., who joined the mob and rose to become right-hand man to Chicago boss Sam Giancana. Cain was convicted of conspiracy in a robbery and sentenced to 10 years in prison. An FBI informant who helped solve that crime was murdered after Cain helped unmask him. Nevertheless, Cain was later recruited as an FBI informant.

"We had been turning a blind eye on his machinations as he tried to take over gambling in Chicago. What an ambition! The deal was that we would not focus on his activity if he spun off his competitors to us," Cain's FBI handler, William Roemer, wrote in his book, "Accardo: The Genuine Godfather."

While informing for Roemer, who is now dead, Cain became a suspect in a 1972 gangland killing. Roemer said he initially dropped the informant, but Cain wasn't prosecuted and soon went back to informing for Roemer.

Cain was killed in an apparent mob hit in 1973. Years later, Roemer remembered him as "one of my closest friends."



He was both a Colombo family mob captain in New York City and longtime FBI informant. Scarpa sided with mob boss Carmine Persico in the early 1990s in a war to put down a family mutiny. Authorities came to suspect that Scarpa, while acting as an informant, took part in as many as 13 murders by the Persico side.

Hearing of one Scarpa murder, handler Lindley DeVecchio slapped a desk and declared triumphantly, "We're going to win this thing!" another agent later testified. Government prosecutors later conceded that evidence suggested DeVecchio leaked information to Scarpa, including names of enemies cooperating with the FBI. DeVecchio later said FBI supervisors knew of the murder suspicions but let him keep using the informant.

Scarpa eventually pleaded guilty to committing three of the murders and playing a role in others.



A swindler who was sentenced to 13 years for fraud in 1979, he was also suspected in at least five murders dating back to the early 1970s. Authorities believed the killings were Burnett's way of eliminating witnesses to his scams. Nevertheless, he was enlisted as an informant in FBI stings on corrupt public officials in Chicago and New York in the 1980s.

Florida police who wanted to talk to Burnett about murders say the FBI isolated him while he worked as an informant. Later, he was charged with a 1975 murder, but the case collapsed when a witness recanted. He was finally sentenced to life in prison for plotting the 1994 murder of a witness set to testify against him in a bank fraud case.

The prosecutor, Margaret Giordano, assistant U.S. attorney in the New York borough of Brooklyn, calls Burnett "a serial killer in the true sense of the word – except he is motivated by greed." She says the FBI was aware of the murder suspicions during his years as an informant.



He rose to become a lieutenant in the Chicago mob and later admitted in court to killing six men. Faced with racketeering accusations, he agreed in 1989 to become an FBI informant, wearing a wire to a meeting with Chicago mob boss Gus Alex. Paid $7,200 over two months as an informant, Patrick kept working as a mob leader, according to FBI handler Roemer.

Patrick testified against Alex in 1992 and helped send him to prison. Once asked in court about suspicions he had killed more than the six victims he acknowledged, Patrick replied in a raspy voice, "No, I've run out of cemeteries." Patrick later joined the federal Witness Protection Program.



Boston mobster Bulger worked as an FBI informant throughout the 1980s, and Flemmi, his top lieutenant, did so off and on from 1965 to 1990.

Much of the information they provided was about Boston's Angiulo crime family, which was virtually wiped out in a series of criminal cases brought by Boston-based FBI agents. As the Angiulos lost their grip, Bulger and Flemmi took over control of loan-sharking, gambling and other rackets in greater Boston.

According to court testimony, Boston FBI agents were aware of many of Bulger and Flemmi's crimes, including murders, but looked the other way, occasionally even tipping them off when state police or other agencies were on their trail. According to testimony, Bulger also bribed FBI agents while working as an informant.

Flemmi is now serving 10 years for obstruction of justice and other offenses and awaiting trial on a federal racketeering case. Bulger, a fugitive on the FBI's most wanted list, is also under indictment on racketeering charges.

Prosecutors blame the two gangsters for 18 murders, 11 committed while Bulger was working as an FBI informant.



Stephen's younger brother, Jimmy was recruited as an FBI informant in 1965, even though the bureau knew his goal was to become Boston's top hitman. He is believed to have killed at least eight people.

FBI documents show that Boston agents allowed innocent men to go to prison for one of the murders they knew their informant had committed. Flemmi died in prison in 1979 after Massachusetts authorities convicted him of attempted murder in another case.



During the social tumult of the late 1960s and early '70s, then FBI Director J. Edgar Hoover identified the Black Panthers as the single greatest threat to the internal security of the country. In 1969, two leaders of the Panthers were killed at the University of California. Two brothers, George and Larry Stiner, members of a rival black nationalist group, the United Slaves, were convicted of conspiracy to commit the murders and were sentenced to life in prison. Both were FBI informants at the time of the murders, according to former agent Wesley Swearingen, who worked in the Los Angeles office.

Subsequently, a May 26, 1970, FBI memo obtained by a congressional committee disclosed that Los Angeles agents had laid a plan to secretly advise the United Slaves of the time and location of Black Panther events "in order that the two organizations might be brought together and thus grant nature the opportunity to take her due course."

The Stiners escaped from San Quentin in 1974. Larry Stiner turned himself in 19 years later; his brother George remains at large.



In the 1960s, Rowe was an FBI informant who helped convict three Ku Klux Klan members of federal rights violations in the killing of a civil rights volunteer in Alabama. The state charged Rowe with the murder, but the case was dropped after the federal government said his work as an informant gave him immunity.

He admitted to congressional investigators that he had beaten blacks, with the permission of his FBI handlers, in order to maintain his credibility with Klansmen. He said agents told him: "We know it's something you have to do, and we understand it, and we need the information."

After five years as an FBI informant, Rowe went into the federal Witness Protection Program. He died of a heart attack in 1998.



A roughneck from rural Kentucky, Foley first killed in 1976, shooting a man who called him a name. He was given a 35-year sentence but won parole in four years. In 1991, he was again in legal trouble on forgery and weapons counts. However, an FBI agent went before an Ohio judge and helped Foley gain release to work for the bureau as an informant.

Eight months later, while helping the FBI, he shot two brothers to death after a fist fight during a party at his home, pumping a total of 12 rounds into them. Eventually, he was convicted of those two murders and four others that took place in 1989 – the first for informing on him to his parole officer and the three others because they were witnesses. The family of the two brothers eventually sued the FBI for $12 million, saying it was responsible for their murders.

The bureau acknowledged that it broke its own rules in handling Foley, but it argued it could not foresee the murders and Foley wasn't technically an employee. A judge dismissed the suit. The bureau said several agents were "mildly sanctioned." Foley has claimed he was framed for all the murders and remains on death row in Kentucky.



HPD officer, former officer arrested





Congress calls on FCC to silence cellphones in prisons
Posted Sunday, October 15, 2017 6:00 am




City of Portland Oregon Disbands Oversight Board Meant to Ensure Police Reform

After two years of the City failing to follow an imperative in the US Department of Justice (DOJ) Settlement Agreement requiring the Mayor (Police Commissioner) to attend two meetings per year of the Community Oversight Advisory Board (COAB), new Mayor Ted Wheeler showed up at what turned out to be COAB's last meeting. Making matters worse, Wheeler did not act to extend the seven remaining COAB members' terms for another year, or at least until a new system was devised. Meanwhile, the City's appeal of Judge Michael Simon's order for them to return to federal court to explain their plans for re-inventing the COAB (PPR #70) is headed to mediation at the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals (Oregonian, March 24).

Although the Mayor appeared sympathetic to those attending the January 26 meeting and the idea of continuing COAB, he did not reappoint or support the reappointment of any of the seated members. Neither Wheeler nor any other member of Council made moves to fill the eight empty seats. Wheeler could have filled the seat vacated by former Mayor Charlie Hales' representative, who resigned last June (PPR #69). Commissioner Amanda Fritz gets some credit as her appointee, Dr. Rochelle Silver, was the only Council appointee who didn't resign; however, Fritz also failed to extend Silver's term.

COAB met October 27 and November 10, but did not meet in December or mid-January because of snow, so their last meeting was only the third held since July. They adopted a recommendation for the Bureau to eliminate the "gang list" which was revealed to be racially imbalanced (also PPR #70). Because of ongoing tension, the Board refused to allow the Compliance Officer/Community Liaison (COCL) to present findings of a community survey, even though COAB helped design the survey in the first place (see sidebar).

The formation of COAB was required by the Agreement stemming from DOJ's lawsuit against Portland for use of excessive force. After COAB spent much of its time examining and rewriting police Directives (policies), the City became increasingly unsupportive. COAB recommended changes to the Bureau's rules about bias-free policing, use of force and other matters which would hold individual officers accountable for misconduct, as well as police training methods. For the most part, they never received feedback from the Bureau or DOJ.

Some officers appointed to advise COAB were hostile to the Board's policy recommendations. One officer attempted to have COAB members removed (PPR #67). Although the attempt was unsuccessful, it indicated the attitude of officials who do not support reform.

The City took a passive aggressive posture toward the COAB. In addition to refusing to replace COAB members who resigned, they placed the Board on hiatus for two months before the second annual status conference in Simon's courtroom to examine the City's progress.

When Wheeler attended the COAB meeting, he promised to examine the 50+ recommendations the Board made. The five COAB members present voted to ask to be reappointed for another year to continue doing work.

Wheeler failed to take further action, and COAB was allowed to expire. Despite Portland's reputation as a progressive city, they seem to be hoping Attorney General Jeff Sessions will keep his promise to stop investigating local police for constitutional violations. Even if the City never emerges from mediation sessions with the DOJ, the Portland Police Association, and the Albina Ministerial Alliance Coalition for Justice and Police Reform with a "COAB 2.0" plan, there may be nobody left in the federal government to hold Portland accountable.

In the COCL's revised 1st/2nd Quarter report, only 15 of 61 community recommendations were fully incorporated. Among the rejected changes, the COCL refused to suggest the Behavioral Health Unit's Advisory Council hold public meetings or come to COAB with draft proposals so they can be vetted in a public setting. On the other hand, they did clarify they want officers to be separated immediately after a shooting incident, but are ok with written notification being generated in 2-6 hours (the previous draft made it sound as if officers could talk to one another for that whole time period). They also changed the words "community activists" to "community members" in describing who disrupted COAB meetings. However, all they did to take responsibility for COAB's demise was to say there was a "strained relationship between the Chair and certain members of the COAB," which is an understatement at best and ignores the Chair's heavy-handed tactics to control people attending meetings.


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US legislators worried by FBI term 'Black Identity Extremist' 

Created by FBI in 2017, critics say designation broadly targets black activists and first prosecution may have begun.


US legislators met to discuss the FBI's "Black Identity Extremist" (BIE) designation as a discriminatory measure that could be used by law enforcement to halt African American activism across the country.

Representative Karen Bass of the Congressional Black Caucus said at the hearing on Tuesday the term could be applied to "all protesters" demonstrating for an end to police violence against black people.

An August FBI intelligence assessment - a document that provides up-to-date information on groups and individuals who pose a perceived threat - used the BIE designation to refer to armed members of the African American community who express anti-government sentiment.


‘A Jewish Joke’ Recalls Frightening McCarthy Era—And Has Parallels for Today


The Resistance needs better heroes

A movement is defined by its heroes. The Resistance can find better heroes than the ones some of its members have chosen – and it should.


Ex-FBI agent tapped to lead government contractor's national ...

Washington Business Journal-
Government IT consultant Buchanan & Edwards has tapped a former FBI agent to lead its national security business. Timothy Healy will oversee the Arlington company's work in the law enforcement, homeland security and defense markets. Most recently, he was president of Ikun LLC, a Herndon-based ...

BENTONVILLE -- Prosecutors told a judge today they are awaiting confirmation of the DNA test that linked a former police chief to the 1997 rape of a Rogers teacher.

Grant Hardin was arrested Feb. 12 in connection with kidnapping and rape. He appeared in court today for his arraignment, but the hearing was rescheduled since formal charges have not been filed against him.

Benton County Prosecutor Nathan Smith said he was waiting on the DNA confirmation. The second DNA test is processed by the Arkansas Crime Laboratory, Smith said.

He may have the results of the second DNA test by Wednesday, Smith said.

Circuit Judge Robin Green rescheduled Hardin's arraignment for April 2.

Hardin's arrest came after DNA linked him to the more than two decades old case. The state obtained the DNA from Hardin, 49, after he pleaded guilty to first-degree murder in October.

The sample matched DNA from the rape case, according to Rogers Police Chief Hayes Minor.


RICHMOND, Va. — The Maryland attorney general’s office on Tuesday asked a federal appeals court to dismiss claims made against the state in a racial discrimination case brought by a former police chief and two other black officers from a small city on Maryland’s eastern shore.

Former Pocomoke City police Officer Franklin Savage, former Chief Kelvin Sewell and Lt. Lynell Green allege that Pocomoke City government, the state and the county prosecutor created a hostile work environment based on race.


Two off-duty Detroit police officers were working an unauthorized security detail at a Corktown bar last week when a Washington Township man was severely injured during a scuffle, Detroit police Chief James Craig said Tuesday.

Former Cmdr. Timothy Leach has been suspended for failing to report he’d used force on a customer inside the Ottava Via tavern on Michigan Avenue during the March 11 St. Patrick’s Day parade, the chief said.

Craig also said Tuesday he demoted Leach to the rank of lieutenant. “As of today, I have de-appointed him,” the chief said.

The customer, 41-year-old Michael Karpovich, remains hospitalized with severe head injuries stemming from the altercation. Family attorney Jennifer Damico of the Mike Morse law firm said he’s suffering from multiple skull fractures.

“The doctors had to remove part of his skull to alleviate the pressure,” Damico told The Detroit NewsMonday night.

A detective who is under Leach’s command at the 11th Precinct also was working at the Ottava Via when the altercation occurred, Craig said. He said it’s unclear whether the detective witnessed the fight, but that he was in violation of department rules by working in the unauthorized detail.


“It is highly likely that officer will face discipline,” Craig said. “There may be some additional charges if he was aware of the force and failed to disclose it; that would be a problem as well. But I’m not certain he was even there as a witness.”

Craig said there were five or six others — not active duty police officers — working for Leach as bouncers. Leach owns a private security consulting firm, Craig said.

Craig said there are two investigations into the incident: An internal affairs review to look at policy violations; and a criminal investigation by the Homicide


Spokane police officer fired for violating department policies after assault charges are dropped

UPDATED: Tue., March 20, 2018, 5:58 p.m.

STROUDSBURG, Pa.  — The wife of a former Pennsylvania police officer who plotted to kill her husband after he threatened to tell authorities she had sex with a 14-year-old boy was sentenced Tuesday to 1½ to four years in prison.


Justice Department refuses to release report on its examination of Spokane Police Department

UPDATED: Tue., March 20, 2018, 4:20 p.m.


— Five women claimed in a lawsuit Tuesday that the city of Provo and former Mayor John Curtis failed to take action to protect them from alleged sexual harassment and assault by the city’s former police chief.

The city and mayor failed to prevent misconduct or discipline former Chief John King after allegations of harassment emerged in 2015 and 2016, the lawsuit alleges.



The American Civil Liberties Union and several community organizations say they’ve reached an agreement to provide input reforms being proposed for the Chicago Police Department.

In the announcement Tuesday, the organizations say their agreement with the city and the Illinois attorney general’s office allows them to offer input into the consent decree currently being negotiated and also take the department to court for noncompliance.

After a 2017 Department of Justice report hammering Chicago police practices, the city offered a draft police-reform deal that called for a monitor only. The ACLU and the community organizations then filed lawsuits calling for federal court intervention and community oversight of the Chicago Police Department.




Unarmed black man shot to death in own backyard after police mistake cell phone for weapon

Tuesday, March 20, 2018, 5:31 PM


Minnesota police officer charged in fatal shooting of  Australian tourist

Justine Damond

Updated: Tuesday, March 20, 2018, 3:57 PM

Posts: 8,845
Reply with quote  #18 








All I want for Christmas is $23tn in debt: Rand Paul lays waste to reckless US spending in annual Festivus Report

20 Dec, 2019 01:28 / Updated 2 days ago










The age of extinction

Delta smelt: the tiny fish caught in California's war with Trump





South Florida Cop Shoots Self while trying to Shoot Family Dog Named Bella








WATCH: Pennsylvania Cop Yanks Woman from Car for Recording Traffic Stop






We Found Villages That Hired Criminals as Cops. Now Officials Want It To Change.

The Anchorage Daily News and ProPublica found small Alaska cities have employed police whose criminal records should have prevented them from being hired. Now, the state board is working to ensure they meet basic hiring standards.

by Kyle Hopkins, Anchorage Daily News Dec. 21, 11 a.m. EST








Arkansas Cop Shoots and Kills Loose Dog to Save Children nowhere near the Dog














Welcome to the Delancey Street Web Site

At our site we hope to show you a little about our model, our successes and our struggles. We’re considered the country's leading residential self-help organization for substance abusers, ex-convicts, homeless and others who have hit bottom. Our average resident has been a hard-core drug addict for sixteen years, abusing alcohol and multiple drugs and has dropped out of school at the 7th grade and has been institutionalized several times. Many have been gang members; most have been trapped in poverty for several generations. Rather than hire experts to help the people with problems, we decided to run Delancey Street with no staff and no funding. Like a large family, our residents must learn to develop their strengths and help each other. It’s an approach to changing lives that is “against all odds”.

We said we were going to take ex-convicts and ex-addicts and teach them to be teachers, general contractors, and truck drivers. They said it couldn’t be done. We said we were going to take 250 people who had never worked and had no skills and teach them to build a 400,000 square foot complex as our new home on the waterfront. They said it couldn’t be done. We said we were going to partner with colleges and get people who started out functionally illiterate to achieve bachelor of arts degrees. They said it couldn’t be done. We said we were going to run successful restaurants, moving companies, furniture making, and cafés and bookstores without any professional help. They said it couldn’t be done. We said we were going to do all this with no staff, no government funding, and no professionals. They laughed and said it couldn’t be done.

We struggle a lot but we’ve been doing it. For over 40 years we’ve been developing a model of social entrepreneurship, of education, of rehabilitation and change that is exciting and full of hope. If you need help, or want to help, please contact us. Most of all, we hope you can feel as inspired by ordinary people’s abilities to achieve extraordinary accomplishments as we’ve been.








Vermont city plagued by social media scandal appoints 3 police chiefs in a week





DEC 22, 2019 | 10:57 PM







Robots humble US Army in wargames

The mission involved dislodging a defending company of infantry, about 120 soldiers, with a single platoon of just 40 attackers on foot






Off-duty cop accused of choking girlfriend in money fight at NYC thrift store





DEC 23, 2019 | 11:44 AM







Missouri sheriff’s lieutenant gets six life sentences for sexually abusing 8-year-old girl





DEC 23, 2019 | 12:24 PM








California Cop Shoots Barking Dog but Shrapnel from Bullet Strikes 2 Bystanders








Palestinian Said Cop Fractured Her Skull With Rifle Stock. Police Tried to Convince Her It Was a Stone

A Border Police officer knocked Dina Darbas unconscious when she tried to prevent her son's arrest in East Jerusalem, requiring she undergo surgery. Israel Police claims she fell victim to stray stone hurled by rioters







Hey, Mr. Mayor, That Reckless Brooklyn Cop is Still at It!







Arbitrator Upholds Firing of Miami Cop Who Desecrated Hebrew Bible on Video










Police Release Video of Cop Slamming Man's Head Into His Own Car They Thought He Stole; He Later Died








cop indicted for murder after shooting woman through window

On Friday, a Tarrant County grand jury indicted Officer Aaron Dean for the murder of Atatiana Jefferson.

By Andrew Emett -

December 23, 2019







UN clashes with Colombia over cop who killed peaceful protester

by Adriaan Alsema December 23, 2019











Top Cop Retires, Heads To Trial











Quezon City cop tests positive for marijuana use




Read more: https://newsinfo.inquirer.net/1205283/quezon-city-cop-tests-positive-for-marijuana-use-2#ixzz68zdUimvE 

Follow us: @inquirerdotnet on Twitter | inquirerdotnet on Facebook








Navi Mumbai Top Cop Defends His Colleague Who 'Molested 17-Year-Old'

Updated: Dec 24, 2019, 07:27 IST | Faizan Khan | Mumbai


Posts: 8,845
Reply with quote  #19 







FBI Dead Files






Inside the FBI’s secret relationship with the military’s special operations







Show us the stop-and-frisk data

Mayor Walsh and the Boston Police Department should release street-encounter data.

By The Editorial Board,Updated January 18, 2020, 4:00 a.m.









Narcotics Agent Held in Boston On Drug Charges








U.S. Department of Justice Office of the Inspector General



A Review of the FBI's Handling and Oversight of FBI Asset Katrina Leung. (U)








Trump: ‘I Should Never Have Done That F-cking Vaping Thing’

During an Oval Office call on speakerphone, the president expressed regret for getting involved









Welcome to the DeSmog Climate Disinformation Research Database where you can search and browse our extensive research on the individuals and organizations that have helped to delay and distract the public and our elected leaders from taking needed action to reduce greenhouse gas pollution and fight global warming. Choose a tab below to view the lists of climate science denier individuals and organizations. 









Activists Find Evidence of Formosa Plant in Texas Still Releasing Plastic Pollution Despite $50 Million Settlement

Read time: 8 mins

By Julie Dermansky • Saturday, January 18, 2020 - 13:20






2010-2019 Hottest Decade Ever

Hottest decade ever recorded ‘driven by man-made climate change’

Nasa and UK Met Office unequivocally blame human influence on warming planet

Financial Times, Jan. 16, 2020


Man-made climate change was the main contributor to what has been the warmest decade, the UK weather service said in a study backed up by Nasa data showing the five years to 2019 were the hottest since records began. With deadly bushfires raging across large parts of Australia, the UK’s Met Office said that the ten years to 2019 were the warmest since it first began taking measurements in 1850.


“The main contributor to warming over the last 170 years is human influence on climate from increasing greenhouse gases in the atmosphere,” the Met Office said on Wednesday. Global temperatures in 2019 were on average 1.05C above pre-industrial levels and this year could be hotter, the British weather service said.


 What’s happening is persistent and not a fluke due to some weather phenomenon. The long-term trends are being driven by increasing levels of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere Gavin Schmidt, Nasa’s Goddard Institute for Space Studies Colin Morice from the Met Office Hadley Centre said: “Each decade from the 1980s has been successively warmer than all the decades that came before. 2019 concludes the warmest...decade in records that stretch back to the mid-19th century.”


 Nasa’s data were in line with the Met’s findings. By the space agency’s calculations, 2019 was the second warmest year on record, behind only 2016. Alaska had its hottest ever year.


“We crossed over into more than 2F warming territory in 2015 and we are unlikely to go back,” said Gavin Schmidt, director of Nasa’s Goddard Institute for Space Studies. “What’s happening is persistent [and] not a fluke due to some weather phenomenon. The long-term trends are being driven by increasing levels of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere,” he added.


Nasa also noted that the amount of heat absorbed by the world’s oceans hit a new high in 2019, which contributed to rising sea levels and melting ice sheets. Mr Morice said that, while global temperatures would continue to rise, this would not necessarily mean year-on-year increases because of natural variability in the climate system.


Last year marked another year of extreme weather events, from heatwaves across Europe to floods in South America and cyclones in Asia. Australian bushfires that began in September have wreaked devastation across much of the country, killing at least 27 people and devastating the natural habitat. Climate scientists have warned that these disasters will become more frequent and intense if the world’s climate continues to warm, and that changes will become irreversible past a certain point. Australia’s meteorology bureau said this month that 2019 had been the hottest and driest year on record, which had helped to drive the bushfires.


Commenting on the US and UK findings, Renee Salas, professor of emergency medicine at Harvard Medical School, said hotter weather had severe implications for human health. “Heat is an insidious universal harm that no one is safe from,” she said. “Heatwaves kill more people than any other extreme weather event.” Despite a series of pledges from businesses and world leaders to tackle climate change, global carbon emissions looked on track to rise in 2019, although at a slower rate than in 2018.


The Paris climate agreement aims to limit global warming to well below 2C, but the latest data demonstrate the difficulty of meeting this goal and the lax progress that has so far been made. The earth has already warmed about 1C since pre-industrial times. The Arctic region has warmed slightly more than three times faster than the rest of the world since 1970, Nasa said.








Ocean temperatures highest of any decade on record


Ocean temperatures hit record high as rate of heating accelerates

The Guardian, Jan. 13, 2020

The heat in the world’s oceans reached a new record level in 2019, showing “irrefutable and accelerating” heating of the planet.

The world’s oceans are the clearest measure of the climate emergency because they absorb more than 90% of the heat trapped by the greenhouse gases emitted by fossil fuel burning, forest destruction and other human activities.

The new analysis shows the past five years are the top five warmest years recorded in the ocean and the past 10 years are also the top 10 years on record. The amount of heat being added to the oceans is equivalent to every person on the planet running 100 microwave ovens all day and all night.


Hotter oceans lead to more severe storms and disrupt the water cycle, meaning more floods, droughts and wildfires, as well as an inexorable rise in sea level. Higher temperatures are also harming life in the seas, with the number of marine heatwaves increasing sharply.

The most common measure of global heating is the average surface air temperature, as this is where people live. But natural climate phenomena such as El Niño events mean this can be quite variable from year to year.

“The oceans are really what tells you how fast the Earth is warming,” said Prof John Abraham at the University of St Thomas, in Minnesota, US, and one of the team behind the new analysis. “Using the oceans, we see a continued, uninterrupted and accelerating warming rate of planet Earth. This is dire news.”

“We found that 2019 was not only the warmest year on record, it displayed the largest single-year increase of the entire decade, a sobering reminder that human-caused heating of our planet continues unabated,” said Prof Michael Mann, at Penn State University, US, and another team member.

The analysis, published in the journal Advances In Atmospheric Sciences, uses ocean data from every available source. Most data is from the 3,800 free-drifting Argo floats dispersed across the oceans, but also from torpedo-like bathythermographs dropped from ships in the past.

The results show heat increasing at an accelerating rate as greenhouse gases accumulate in the atmosphere. The rate from 1987 to 2019 is four and a half times faster than that from 1955 to 1986. The vast majority of oceans regions are showing an increase in thermal energy.

This energy drives bigger storms and more extreme weather, said Abraham: “When the world and the oceans heat up, it changes the way rain falls and evaporates. There’s a general rule of thumb that drier areas are going to become drier and wetter areas are going to become wetter, and rainfall will happen in bigger downbursts.”

Hotter oceans also expand and melt ice, causing sea levels to rise. The past 10 years also show the highest sea level measured in records dating back to 1900. Scientists expect about one metre of sea level rise by the end of the century, enough to displace 150 million people worldwide.

Dan Smale, at the Marine Biological Association in the UK, and not part of the analysis team, said the methods used are state of the art and the data is the best available. “For me, the take-home message is that the heat content of the upper layers of the global ocean, particularly to 300 metre depth, is rapidly increasing, and will continue to increase as the oceans suck up more heat from the atmosphere,” he said.

The analysis method was developed by researchers at the Chinese Academy of Sciences in Beijing and uses statistical methods to interpolate heat levels in the few places where there was no data, such as under the Arctic ice cap. An independent analysis of the same data by the US National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Administration shows that same increasing heat trend.

Reliable ocean heat measurements stretch back to the middle of the 20th century. But Abraham said: “Even before that, we know the oceans were not hotter.”

“The data we have is irrefutable, but we still have hope because humans can still take action,” he said. “We just haven’t taken meaningful action yet.”








Twenty firms generated one-third of all emissions


Revealed: the 20 firms behind a third of all carbon emissions

New data shows how fossil fuel companies have driven climate crisis despite industry knowing dangers

The Guardian (U.K.), Oct. 9, 2019

The Guardian today revealed the 20 fossil fuel companies whose relentless exploitation of the world’s oil, gas and coal reserves can be directly linked to more than one-third of all greenhouse gas emissions in the modern era.

New data from world-renowned researchers reveals how this cohort of state-owned and multinational firms are driving the climate emergency that threatens the future of humanity, and details how they have continued to expand their operations despite being aware of the industry’s devastating impact on the planet.


The analysis, by Richard Heede at the Climate Accountability Institute in the US, the world’s leading authority on big oil’s role in the escalating climate emergency, evaluates what the global corporations have extracted from the ground, and the subsequent emissions these fossil fuels are responsible for since 1965 – the point at which experts say the environmental impact of fossil fuels was known by both industry leaders and politicians.

The top 20 companies on the list have contributed to 35% of all energy-related carbon dioxide and methane worldwide, totalling 480bn tonnes of carbon dioxide equivalent (GtCO2e) since 1965.

Those identified range from investor-owned firms – household names such as Chevron, Exxon, BP and Shell – to state-owned companies including Saudi Aramco and Gazprom.

Chevron topped the list of the eight investor-owned corporations, followed closely by Exxon, BP and Shell. Together these four global businesses are behind more than 10% of the world’s carbon emissions since 1965.


Twelve of the top 20 companies are state-owned and together their extractions are responsible for 20% of total emissions in the same period. The leading state-owned polluter is Saudi Aramco, which has produced 4.38% of the global total on its own.

Michael Mann, one of the world’s leading climate scientists, said the findings shone a light on the role of fossil fuel companies and called on politicians at the forthcoming climate talks in Chile in December to take urgent measures to rein in their activities.


“The great tragedy of the climate crisis is that seven and a half billion people must pay the price – in the form of a degraded planet – so that a couple of dozen polluting interests can continue to make record profits. It is a great moral failing of our political system that we have allowed this to happen.”

The global polluters list uses company-reported annual production of oil, natural gas, and coal and then calculates how much of the carbon and methane in the produced fuels is emitted to the atmosphere throughout the supply chain, from extraction to end use.

It found that 90% of the emissions attributed to the top 20 climate culprits was from use of their products, such as petrol, jet fuel, natural gas, and thermal coal. One-tenth came from extracting, refining, and delivering the finished fuels.

The Guardian approached the 20 companies named in the polluters list. Seven of them replied. Some argued that they were not directly responsible for how the oil, gas or coal they extracted were used by consumers. Several disputed claims that the environmental impact of fossil fuels was known as far back as the late 1950s or that the industry collectively had worked to delay action.

Most explicitly said they accepted the climate science and some claimed to support the targets set out in the Paris agreement to reduce emissions and keep global temperature rises to 1.5C above pre-industrial levels.

All pointed out efforts they were making to invest in renewable or low carbon energy sources and said fossil fuel companies had an important role to play in addressing the climate crisis. PetroChina said it was a separate company from its predecessor, China National Petroleum, so had no influence over, or responsibility for, its historical emissions.

The latest study builds on previous work by Heede and his team that has looked at the historical role of fossil fuel companies in the escalating climate crisis.

The impact of emissions from coal, oil and gas produced by fossil fuel companies has been huge. According to research published in 2017 by Peter Frumhoff at the Union of Concerned Scientists in the US and colleagues, CO2 and methane emissions from the 90 biggest industrial carbon producers were responsible for almost half the rise in global temperature and close to a third of the sea level rise between 1880 and 2010. The scientists said such work furthered the “consideration of [companies’] historical responsibilities for climate change”.

Heede said: “These companies and their products are substantially responsible for the climate emergency, have collectively delayed national and global action for decades, and can no longer hide behind the smokescreen that consumers are the responsible parties.

“Oil, gas, and coal executives derail progress and offer platitudes when their vast capital, technical expertise, and moral obligation should enable rather than thwart the shift to a low-carbon future.”

Heede said 1965 was chosen as the start point for this new data because recent research had revealed that by that stage the environmental impact of fossil fuels was known by industry leaders and politicians, particularly in the US.

In November 1965, the president, Lyndon Johnson, released a report authored by the Environmental Pollution Panel of the President’s Science Advisory Committee, which set out the likely impact of continued fossil fuel production on global heating.

In the same year, the president of the American Petroleum Institute told its annual gathering: “One of the most important predictions of the [president’s report] is that carbon dioxide is being added to the Earth’s







Off-duty cop assaults his wife in their Brooklyn home: authorities





JAN 19, 2020 








Dentist who rode hoverboard while removing tooth found guilty of ‘unlawful dental acts’





JAN 19, 2020 | 3:52 PM








Richmond Gun Rally: Is A Virginia Cop Giving 4Chan’s /pol Board Inside Info?

January 19, 2020

By Robert Evans









Officer sexually assaults woman he met on domestic violence call, Colorado cops say


JANUARY 19, 2020 09:42 AM






Investigating your police department? Here’s what N.J. cops must tell you under new rules.

Updated Jan 18, 12:21 PM;Posted Jan 18, 8:13 AM










By Daniel Hopsicker -

January 19, 2020

It didn’t take a weatherman to know which way the wind was blowing in 2016. Americans wanted change. BIG change.

The Democratic party offered them Hillary Clinton: Mayor Richard J. Daley in a dress.









By Daniel Hopsicker -

January 16, 2020









Documents Show FBI Targeting Pro-Choice Movement as Violent Terrorist Threat


 Sparrow in news


Washington, DC — In an especially egregious case of “bothsidesism,”










In March 2004, the FBI informed all field offices that an unclassified post-9/11 suspect list had been posted on the internet. “An FBI agent subsequently discovered a twenty-two-page untitled Excel spreadsheet, dated 10/03/2001” — likely an FBI watchlist — published on Antiwar.com. The Newark, New Jersey, office of the FBI prepared a 10-page “threat assessment” on Antiwar. The memo described the site’s mission and included a description of six articles found through a Lexis Nexis search for Garris and Antiwar.com. Further, the memo noted that “persons of interest” to the FBI had accessed or discussed the website.

The memo ultimately indicated that the Newark office recommended that the FBI’s field office in San Francisco monitor Garris and Antiwar’s postings. Yet the San Francisco office declined to do so, explaining that the website was “not a clear threat to National Security.” It categorized the site as a source of public information and said Garris “[was] exercising [his] constitutional right to free speech.”

Garris learned of the 2004 memo after it was released as part of an unrelated FOIA request. Garris then filed his own FOIA request, and the subsequent response was not as heavily redacted as the version that was posted online. The document stated that Garris had threatened to “disrupt FBI operations by hacking the FBI website.” As German points out, however, this was clearly a mistake. The analyst who received the email from Garris believed the message was a threat against the FBI, and did not realize that Garris was actually forwarding the email that contained the threat against Antiwar’s own website. Still, according to the memo, the FBI continued to monitor Garris and Antiwar.

Garris filed FOIA and Privacy Act requests seeking all FBI records about him, and when he exhausted the administrative remedies, he filed a lawsuit. He also separately filed requests seeking expungement of all records maintained by the FBI that described his exercise of First Amendment rights.

During the litigation, Garris also learned of the existence of another memo, called the “Halliburton Memo.” In 2006, the FBI’s Oklahoma City field office created the memo, which detailed plans by groups to protest Halliburton, the oil field services company once run by former Vice President Dick Cheney. Antiwar.com had posted information about a Halliburton shareholders’ meeting, and so the website was listed in the memo as one of the sources of publicly shared information about the meeting.

Garris sought expungement of these records, arguing that the law enforcement activity exception did not apply to them because the investigations in both memos had ended and the records were not pertinent to an ongoing authorized law enforcement activity. The U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California ultimately granted summary judgment to the FBI. The parties settled the remaining disclosure issues, but Garris appealed the Privacy Act claims.

Though there were many issues for the court to consider, the most pertinent for press freedom purposes was whether maintaining the 2004 memo and the Halliburton memo violated the Pr










Reporters Committee and 57 news organizations urge Senate to reconsider impeachment trial press restrictions


Posts: 8,845
Reply with quote  #20 






Report of Investigation: Recovery of Text Messages From Certain FBI Mobile Devices


Redactions were made to the full version of this report to protect individual privacy and information identified by the FBI as law enforcement sensitive.

 Investigations Division 2018-003523 Dece





Each year, Maine’s K-12 schools waste about 7 million pounds of food

Student efforts at King Middle School in Portland, which include sorting cafeteria food into five categories and using ‘compost guardians,’ reflect the state's move toward reducing that number.








Judge rebuffed pleas from worried Long Island mom five months before estranged father allegedly killed her son, 8





FEB 03, 2020 | 4:00 AM









How FBI agents get deliberately sloppy when they give

A lie detector test



Public Summary: Review of the Federal Bureau of Investigation’s Response to Unresolved Results in Polygraph Examinations








Woman bites off man’s tongue after he ignores plea to stop using it during kissing





FEB 03, 2020 | 8:55 AM










Prosecutors: Ex-HPD cop Gerald Goines repeatedly lied in 2008 drug case that convicted man


St. John Barned-Smith Feb. 3, 2020 









Three cops 'disgraceful,' 'irresponsible' in face of colleague's life-threatening injuries at police academy





FBI and Auburn University strike deal










The Colloboration of Universities with the Intelligence


A detailed investigation of the extent to which American universities, Harvard and Yale in particular, collaborated with government intelligence agencies in monitoring and suppressing political dissent in the early cold war period. In 1954, Diamond (Sociology and History/Columbia) was fired from Harvard by Dean McGeorge Bundy for failing to show ``complete









You basically are nothing': the Americans shut out of the Iowa caucuses

Hundreds of thousands of Iowans are barred from the Iowa caucus because of physical and legal barriers







The Cincinnati Bell-FBI scandal:  Leonard Gates, a Cincinnati Bell employee for 23 years, testified that in the late 1970's and 80's, the FBI assisted telephone companies with hacking into mainframe election computers in cities across the country. He spoke with agents from both the DOJ (U.S. Attorney Kathleen M. Brinkman) and FBI (Agent Love), but to his knowledge, neither agency took further action.  Leonard Gates 1987Deposition, plus 1985 Background Material from Jim Condit, Jr.//Pandora's Black Box & http://www.votefraud.org/expert_strunk_report.htm (contains case number) 

  • Gates testified, P. 28, "He (Gates's supervisor, Mr. Jim West,) said the programming was obtained out of California, and that the programming had been obtained through the FBI, and all this kind of stuff, and that was about it." 
  • Page 34 excerpt: "And I knew that we did do certain things under certain court direction, under certain court orders, and I just didn't see where they would have a court order to get into that, and I expressed my concern to Mr. Dugan (President of Cincinnati Bell).  Mr. Dugan said it was a very gray area, and that they were into like New York and Atlanta, Georgia, and to the other computers, you know.  This was just small compared to what was going on."
  • Page 39, "...and I said, "Well, do you (Mr.Fedrich, vice president of Cincinnati Bell) have a blanket court order on this or what?"  And he kind of weasel-worded me, to be honest with you.  He said "Well, our relationship with the FBI is very, very close."

Excerpt from Nov 1996, Pandora's Black Box by Philip M. O’Halloran of Relevance, The Cincinnati Election Wiretapping Scandal:

Lewis and other skeptics of the vote-fixing scenario like to insist that there has never been any evidence of a "conspiracy" to fix elections by computer. But then, most of those we interviewed on both sides of the issue had never heard of the case of Leonard Gates of Cincinnati, Ohio. An employee of the Cincinnati Bell telephone company, Gates was watching a local t.v. news story, in which a Cincinnati man named Jim Condit was charging that the election system was vulnerable to vote fraud in the Hamilton county election process.

He based his charges on his experience as a candidate for city council in 1979, when, after an election night computer crash, Condit and seven other "feisty challengers" had suddenly "fallen to the very bottom of the heap" of 26 candidates. Gates called the station and later contacted Mr. Condit, telling him he knew firsthand how his votes were robbed. They met and shared information and ultimately Gates testified in Condit’s Cincinnatus PAC (political action committee) lawsuit against the Hamilton County Board of Elections.

The suit had earlier been decided against the plaintiffs and Gates took the stand during the appeal. He swore under oath that he was ordered by his Cincinnati Bell superiors to wiretap the election headquarters’ phones lines to provide a link-up between the county’s vote-counting computers and parties unknown on another phone line somewhere in California.

The following are excerpts from the Cincinnati Post of October, 30th, 1987:

Cincinnati Bell security supervisors ordered wire-taps installed on county computers before elections in the late 1970s and early 1980s that could have allowed vote totals to be altered, a former Bell employee says in a sworn court document.

Leonard Gates, a 23-year Cincinnati Bell employee until he was fired in 1986, claims in a deposition filed Thursday in Hamilton County Common Pleas Court to have installed the wire-taps. Cincinnati Bell officials denied Gates’ allegations that are part of a six-year-old civil suit that contends the elections computer is subject o manipulation and fraud.

Gates claims a security supervisor for the telephone company told him in 1979 that the firm had obtained a computer program through the FBI that gave it access to the county computer used to count votes. [Emphasis added].

The FBI refused comment and Cincinnati Bell spokesmen vehemently denied the allegations, claiming Gates was a "disgruntled ex-employee", yet, according to Condit, the company ultimately admitted that one of its vans was involved in the wiretapping, although it claimed they were commandeered without the company’s knowledge. The Post continued:

In the deposition, Gates claims he first installed a wire-tap on a telephone line to the county computers before the 1977 election at the instruction of James West, a Bell security supervisor.

Gates contends both West and Peter Gabor, security director, told him to install wire-taps in subsequent elections. Both men declined comment Thursday.

In the 1979 election, which is the focus of the deposition – Gates said he received instructions in the mail from West about installing wire-taps on county computers in the County Administration Building at Court and Main streets.

The wire-taps were installed on the eve of the election at Cincinnati Bell’s switching control center at Seventh and Elm Streets and terminated in a conference room in the building, Gates alleges.

In the deposition, Gates described in great technical detail installation of the wire-taps.

At about 8:30 p.m. on election day – Nov. 6, 1979 – Gates said he was called by West and told something had gone wrong, causing the elections computer to malfunction. At West’s instructions, Gates said he removed the taps.

The elections computer shutdown for two hours on election evening due to what was believed to be a power failure, Condit Sr. has said.

Gates said West told him they "had the ability to actually alter what was being done with the votes."

Gates said West told him the Board of elections did not know about the taps and that the computer program for the elections computer "was obtained out of California, and that the programming had been obtained through the FBI..."

Shortly after the 1979 election, Gates said he met with the late Richard Dugan, former Cincinnati Bell president, to express his concerns that the wire-taps were done without a court order.

"Mr. Dugan said it was a very gray area... This was just small compared to what was going on. He told me just, if I had a problem, to talk to him and everything would be okay, but everything was under control," Gates said [Emphasis added].

[Editor’s Note: This scandal’s alleged FBI connection raises the possibility of U.S. law enforcement and/or intelligence involvement in electronic vote-rigging.]

Another Cincinnati Bell employee, named Bob Draise, admitted to being involved in a second phase of the illegal operation, which involved wiretapping several prominent Cincinnati political figures including a crusader against pornography named Keating and the Hamilton County commissioner, Allen Paul.

Jim Condit told Relevance that, as a result of the ensuing scandal, Draise was convicted and five Cincinnati police officers, who were allegedly involved in the wiretapping operation, abruptly resigned. The alleged involvement of the FBI was never pursued and the Bureau itself did not follow up on the Gates allegations. In spite of all the evidence, the appeal by the plaintiff failed and the issue was laid to rest.



The unique vulnerability of electronic voting technologies has been long known to federal authorities. 

“If you did it right, no one would ever know,” said Craig C. Donsanto, head of the U.S. Department of Justice’s Election Crimes Branch, Public Integrity Section (from 1970-present) in a July 4,1989 Los Angeles Times article about electronic voting machines and vote fraud. 

So, why hasn't Donsanto sounded the alarm and informed Congress of this threat?

Donsanto has the reputation of a gatekeeper.  He was featured in the Colliers' book, VoteScam, for his unwil







DEA: Sinaloa Cartel Is Biggest Criminal Threat to U.S., Despite Ex-Leader’s










US Government  Dealing Heroin , Cocaine






Gary Webb at the 2003 School of Authentic Journalism








We Probed Sexual Misconduct Claims Against Journalist Al Giordano. Here’s What We Found.

The reporter and activist denies accusations he sexually harassed three attendees of his School of Authentic Journalism.

















DOJ OIG Releases Procedural Reform Recommendation for the FBI to Strengthen its Training for Supervisors and Managers Regarding Statutory Whistleblower Protections

Department of Justice (DOJ) Inspector General Michael E. Horowitz announced today the release of a Procedural Reform Recommendation (PRR) for the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI). The DOJ Office of the Inspector General (OIG) releases PRRs when, through its investigative work, it identifies a systematic weakness in Justice Department operations, programs, policies, procedures, or practices, and has a recommendation to address the identified problem.

In today’s PRR, the OIG concluded that the training provided by the FBI to its supervisors and managers does not contain sufficient information concerning identifying protected disclosures under 5 U.S.C.

§ 2303 and responding appropriately to those disclosures from a management perspective. Accordingly, the OIG recommended that the FBI take steps to strengthen this training to ensure that management employees recognize that: (1) communications by FBI employees to offices or officials outside of the “chain of command” may be protected disclosures under 5 U.S.C. § 2303; and (2) penalizing FBI employees for violating the “chain of command” when they are engaged in protected activity may be a violation of the law.

Today’s PRR arose out of an investigation into allegations from an FBI technician that he was threatened with reprisal for making a protected disclosure under the FBI Whistleblower Regulations to a Special Agent in Charge (SAC) of an FBI Division where the technician served a Temporary Duty (TDY) assignment. At the time the FBI technician made the disclosure, the SAC was not in the technician’s “chain of command.” In direct response to the disclosure, a supervisor in the technician’s home

office — after being counseled by a second supervisor and the Administrative Officer (AO) for that office — threatened to lower the technician’s annual performance appraisal rating and deny future requests for TDY opportunities. The OIG concluded that there were reasonable grounds to believe that the technician suffered reprisals as a result of his protected disclosures.

As a result of the OIG’s investigative findings, on March 8, 2018, the OIG separately recommended that DOJ’s Office of Attorney Recruitment and Management (OARM) order corrective action instructing the FBI to formally withdraw or otherwise eliminate the threats by the technician’s supervisors and the AO to downgrade the technician’s performance appraisal rating and deprive him of TDY opportunities.

Today’s PRR is available under “Recent Reports” on the OIG’s website and at the following link:


The Investigative Summary for the investigation that led to today’s PRR is also available under “Recent Reports” on the OIG’s website and at the following link: https://oig.justice.gov/reports/2018/f180314.pdf.


The OIG’s Memorandum to OARM, dated March 8, 2018, is available under “Recent Reports” on the OIG’s website and at the following link: https://oig.justice.gov/reports/2018/memo-180308.pdf.


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Reply with quote  #21 











Friday, March 20, 2020

Doctors are being censored/ Medscape


Medscape commentary by John Medrola, M.D. on March 20

"I have to remind the American doctor that life is changing.… It's not a normal life. It's a #COVID19 life. It's a pandemic life."

With these words, spoken March 18, during a joint webinar of the Chinese Cardiac Society and the American College of Cardiology, Professor Bin Cao, MD, from China, jolted healthcare workers across the world. And while China reported good news this week, with its first day of no new local infections in Wuhan province, the United States and other countries face the beginning of the surge.

I've heard and sensed that many nurses and docs are ready for the challenge. But the new fear is the shortage of personal protective equipment (PPE).


The analogy of a coming storm is apt. It's as if we can now feel the winds and see the dark clouds. But even as we begin to see patients with COVID-19, and some hospitals in hot spots feel the surge, we won't be fully protected against the contagious virus.

Numerous colleagues have direct messaged (DM) me on Twitter that their hospital is rationing PPE and supplies are running short. C. Michael Gibson, MD, tweeted that he has received 10 DMs about shortages of masks. In a Twitter poll with more than 300 votes, a third of respondents said their hospital had no masks, and nearly half said they were allowed only one mask.

Another chilling message received through the privacy of direct messaging: many doctors have been expressly told by their administration not to speak publicly about conditions. And few will go against their employer out of fear of being fired. That means the stories about PPE shortages likely underestimate the problem.

Adding to the shortages of PPE and the muzzling of frontline clinicians is the lack of testing. We simply don't know who is infected. And if you don't know that, you don't know who to isolate.

If we were to follow Cao's advice—that it's a pandemic life—we would use masks and PPE routinely, and we would test patients immediately so that those infected can be put on isolation wards. These seemingly simple actions would protect caregivers. But we can't do that because we don't have access to rapid testing or PPE.Perhaps the most dire message came when Gibson tweeted a screenshot from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention with recommendations for use of homemade masks if a facility runs out of masks: "HCP [health care provider] might use homemade masks, such as a bandana or scarf, for the care of patients with COVID19. However homemade masks are not considered PPE."

Bandanas? Are they serious? In the richest country in the world?

To be clear, hospital administrators did not cause PPE shortages. Leadership at my hospital has not told me to shut up. I see them working hard to help us. While administrators are less likely to be exposed, they have a huge role to play in getting us PPE, changing policies on the move, and keeping the hospital financially solvent. Indeed, we want administrators to succeed.


On an e-group with colleagues, most of whom are young and healthy, a friend wrote, "Every time I read about a person with no comorbidities on a ventilator, my heart sinks."


I remember these sensations from the 1990s, when we placed lines in patients with HIV. But at least then we could identify infected patients; we can't do that with COVID-19. And this week, the New England Journal of Medicine reports the virus can be passed through the air.


It's weird: the feeling that your job could take your life.


A month ago, we were providers tapping on our electronic health records and marching to the whims of administrators. Now, nurses and doctors report to work knowing that we will likely become infected.


While we don't know the exact virulence of this disease, the evidence is clear that some of us will become ill and die. It's a numbers game.


Be safe and be lucky, colleagues. Respect to you all.




Posted by Meryl Nass, M.D. at 9:57 PM 0 comments 








The French hydroxychloroquine study


Hydroxychloroquine and azithromycin as a treatment of COVID-19: results of an open label non-randomized clinical trial


20 patients were treated, 16 patients (unmatched, nonrandomized) were controls, 6 treated patients lost to followup, in some cases due to worsening



Percentage of patients with PCR-positive nasopharyngeal samples from inclusion to day6 post-inclusion in COVID-19 patients treated with hydroxychloroquine only, in COVID-19 patients treated with hydroxychloroquine and azithomycin combination, and in COVID-19 control patients.


Please cite this work as Gautret et al. (2020) Hydroxychloroquine and azithromycin as a treatment of COVID ‐ 19: results of an open ‐ label non ‐ randomized clinical trial. International Journal of Antimicrobial Agents - In Press 17 March 2020 - DOI: 10.1016 / j.ijantimicag.2020.105949


See link for full Story


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Reply with quote  #22 





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