Friday, July 29, 2011

Police brutality lawsuit in Jerry Amaro case can go forward

The US 9th Circuit Court of Appeals in San Francisco has found that Oakland Police lied, mirepresented evidence, and stonewalled the investigation into the March 23, 2000 police killing of Jerry Amaro. The ruling will allow a police brutality lawsuit filed by Amaro's family in 2009 to go forward.
Amaro was arrested for allegedly trying to buy crack cocaine from the undercover officers, who were posing as dealers. He later told jail officials, inmates and relatives that officers had beaten him before booking him, an account that two witnesses on the scene later supported, the appeals court said.

One witness, who was also arrested that night, said officers had repeatedly kicked Amaro in the ribs, punched him in the face and kneed him in the back, the court noted. The witness said Amaro had been bleeding from the nose and mouth when he was put in a police car.

The jail officer recalled that Amaro had bruises to his face and had complained about his ribs, and Amaro's cellmate said he could barely get out of bed. Amaro was released five days later, showed his mother his bruises and told her he had been denied treatment, the court said.

On April 18, 2000, a doctor told him he had suffered five rib fractures and a collapsed lung and needed emergency treatment. He died three days later, having opted to stay with a friend rather than receive treatment.
-SF Gate

World Revolution Update

Thursday, July 28, 2011

East Bay Park shooting Update

East Bay Regional Park District police were too scared to look for the marijuana farm in broad daylight too I guess, even though they publicly acknowledge that they believe that the gunmen are long gone.
MORAGA -- Authorities have suspended their search for a hidden pot farm they think gunmen were protecting when they opened fire on a parks officer Monday night, the East Bay Regional Park District police said Tuesday.

Park police Capt. Mark Ruppenthal cited the need for more planning and commitments of outside help before they scour the rugged landscape south of Moraga and Canyon.

"We need to be able to scout the area," Ruppenthal told media members at Rancho Laguna Park, a gateway to the fields and hills that extend south to the Upper San Leandro Reservoir. "You're talking about a large wooded area to search."

Ruppenthal acknowledged the people who shot at his officer with assault rifles probably left the area after eluding an intense manhunt Monday night that involved several police agencies and helicopters. He added that the authorities' main objective now is to shut down the marijuana-growing operation that sparked the gunfire.
-Mercury News"

Ok, maybe they realize that there are still several weeks until harvest, and therefore there is no rush to get in right now. Convenient excuse.
Their failure to act is really evidence of how increasingly underfunded government agencies are finding themselves increasingly unable to do their basic job functions adequately. Park rangers don't mow the lawns. They're supposed to prevent crime, like illegal marijuana farms.
People shot at a park ranger with automatic weapons, and the park police are not going in after them or their illegal operation, whatever it may have been. Maybe they'll go in closer to harvest, maybe they won't.

I just remember the never-ending line of cop cars racing to Oakland from Contra Costa County desperately wanting to get in some stick time on protestors (who were all kids, none of whom fired any weapon at any cop) the night of the Johannes Mehserle sham verdict. Interesting that those same tough guys are all too scared to hike through the woods (with the backup of an armored truck and a helicopter) to bust a multi-thousand (at least) dollar drug operation....priorities I guess.... :-/

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

'Flash Rob"

Despite the all-star cast of cluless people in this video, the talking head "reporter" really brings it all together and thoroughly owns it.
This shit is happenin everywhere, and the cops know it, and that's why they got itchy trigger fingers these days.
Back when people had jobs and things were affordable, people believed in the system.
Now that there are no jobs and everything is expensive, there is disbelief, and appropriately so.

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Gunmen fire on park ranger in East Bay Hills

MORAGA -- An East Bay Regional Park District police officer had to be rescued Monday after he was shot at by multiple people while on patrol in a rugged area of park lands near Moraga and Canyon, police said.

The officer called dispatch about 7 p.m. asking for help after he said he was fired upon by assailants with automatic rifles. Police said he returned fire but it was unclear whether he struck anyone.

Officers from Moraga, Lafayette and the Contra Costa County Sheriff's Office were summoned to safely retrieve the officer and search for the gunmen.
-Inside Bay Area

The cops had an armored car and a helicopter, so they were able to retrieve the officer, but were unable to find the gunmen, and called off the search at nightfall.
The area is relatively remote, but not to the point where law enforcement can't go in and find a sizeable marijuana grow, especially since they have helicopters. However, it is interesting to note that they are afraid of going in. Perhaps budget cuts have made it impossible for them to effectively combat an organized grow operation (and by "organized," I mean more than one armed person living in tents, watching weeds grow)?
In any event, I find a little bit of humor in the fact that all those uber-rich white people who tried their hardest to be as far away from the flatlands of Oakland as they could possibly get still have to deal with violent crime in their neighborhood.
Guess they need to find a bigger mountain now...

Monday, July 25, 2011

Obama orders 20,000 troops to patrol US

The police are already out of control.
Will the police sit back and take orders from the military, or will they feel any loyalty to their communities?
Unfortunately, in the ghetto, the cops aren't from the community.
This news is quite unnerving, although not exactly unexpected.

Saturday, July 23, 2011

Asia settles South China Sea tension

With Hillary Clinton coming to town, ASEAN nations were able to get China to agree to a draft of a "South China Sea" dispute agreement that focuses on bi-lateral dispute resolution.
China's acquiescence to the draft agreement – which ends more than a decade of deadlock and brings the countries closer to a final, legally binding code of conduct – was likely spurred by a desire to get the issue off the table before Clinton's arrival Thursday night at the ASEAN summit in Bali, Reuters reports.
-Christian Science Monitor

Parts of the disputed territory, which sees 1/3 of all global shipping pass through it, are claimed by China, the Philippines, Vietnam, Taiwan, Brunei, and Malaysia. The area is also rich in oil and natural gas.

China is open to an agreement that excludes US meddling, but still refuses to acknowledge other countries' territorial claims. The Philippines is hesitant to square off against China in a bilateral disagreement without their big brother/bully from across the Pacific.
In essence, nothing has happened other than a promise amongst ASEAN nations to handle things in house, without Hillary being invited into the dialogue.

Pelican Bay Hunger Strikers Eat

“Our message to youth is our example: unity. Then go after the real enemies.”
-California Prison Hunger Strikers

The 11 hunger striking prisoners in the Pelican Bay Security Housing Unit (SHU) have agreed to end their strike after four weeks. The "shrunken" prisoners agreed to eat in echange for "cold-weather caps, wall calendars and some educational opportunities." Advocates believe the campaign to have been a success based on the amount of support generated over the past 4 weeks, and are gearing up for further campaigns.
Officially, 500 other inmates continue hunger strikes throughout the state, possibly because prison officials have lied to them several times previously by claiming that the original strike in Pelican Bay had ended.
California prison torture, dangerous snitching policy and poor sanitary conditions prompted the well planned hunger strike that continues spiraling throughout the California prison system and now across America where protests have been held and a national day of solidarity is developing.
-SF Bay View

SFPD manipulating youtube video footage?

In the photo above, courtesy of Race for the Times, it appears as though the "shiny object" in the infamous youtube video slowly morphed over time into a "shiny gun-looking object" to conveniently coincide with SFPD claims that Kenneth Harding had a gun and fired at the police officers who shot the teenager in the back while he ran away from them after being approached about a $2 transit pass.
I witnessed this morphing first hand and in real life. There's actually a discussion that took place online last Monday that can prove that. At the start of the conversation, I was adamant that there is no gun in the video. Later that afternoon, I conceded that the object looked more gun-like after I had rewatched the video on another computer, and I just assumed that the resolution must have been better. Maybe that was the case, maybe it wasn't. The pic in the upper right above does seem to have better resolution than the previous two, but I do find it odd that someone would feel compelled to repost a video with better resolution.
I do have to disagree with the bottom two screen grabs above though. That is the object picked up by the "man in the hoodie" allegedly apprehended by SFPD on Saturday night, but who is apparently still on the loose with that flat rectangular object seen in the video. That is not the "same object" as the top three screen grabs above. The morphing "shiny gun-looking object" is actually several yards further away from where Harding lay dying, but the fact does still remain that it slowly morphed into a gun over the course of time.
What is noteworthy about the bottom two screen grabs though is that a police officer is caught standing just a few feet away from the object when the "man in the hoodie" picks it up. The cop is facing the object, and sees the "man in the hoodie" pick it up, and does not react in any way. Since the cop is facing the object, which is likely a cell phone, he is also facing the "shiny gun-looking object" which lays just a few yards further away. I would hope that police officers would be trained to spot shiny handguns sitting on dirty sidewalks in broad daylight. Especially when they are trying to contain a crime scene. Especially when they're securing a crime scene that involved an officer involved shooting. In fact, if any of those police officers (and there were many as you can clearly see) believed that the victim had fired at officers, their first immediate concern would be to secure the weapon for their own safety, as well as for evidence.
But none of the officers are looking for a gun. Most of them actually turn their back on the victim and focus on crowd control immediately after the shooting. While they can't be blamed for that part, it is not believable at all that neither job training nor survival instinct would kick in at that point. The video evidence clearly proves that the majority of the officers on the scene do not consider Harding to be any kind of threat, and they are clearly not concerned with looking for any kind of weapon on the scene.
This case is not in any way helping with the already-suspect public image of the SFPD.
SFPD has already lost credibility with the public. Many have forgotten it was just three months ago SFPD was rocked with a scandal that involved dozens of felony cases being dropped because cops were shown on video behaving in unethical manners ranging from falsifying reports, illegally searching suspects, stealing from victims etc. What was shown was believed to be the tip of the iceberg and as a result a federal investigation was launched.

If that wasn’t enough, the scandal, which was the largest in the recent history of the San Francisco Police Department, wasn’t discovered and “policed” by the department itself. It was Jeff Adachi, the city’s public defender, and private defense lawyers who did the heavy lifting. Much of the scandal took place during the tenure of former Police Chief George Gascon, who now serves as district attorney. Talk about conflict of interest. At last count, a whopping 57 felony cases were dropped.
-SF Bay View

This case only continues the "consistent pattern of malfeasance" that Adachi uncovered.

Friday, July 22, 2011

World Revolution Update

From the Bayview to Somalia, the rich get richer, and the poor get hungry, shot, and slandered.

Monday's community press conference in the Bayview

Since following the twists and turns of the ever-changing official version of the story being spewed out by the police and their lapdogs in the corporate media is crazy-making, here's a video of Monday's community press conference in the Bayview. You'll notice that even though people are really passionate about the subject and frustrated with the lack of truth coming out from the police department, listening to them actually makes you feel like the world makes sense.

Thursday, July 21, 2011

The story gets crazier

Of all the lunacy going on all over the world right now, San Francisco might be the biggest drama queen of them all.
Specifically, I'm talking about the SFPD shooting of 19 year-old Kenneth Harding over a $2 transit pass, a case which saw three different bombshells dropped today.
1) Police Chief Greg Suhr, fresh from last night's "evacuation" from the Bayview Opera House, struck back by announcing that Harding was killed by a .38 caliber bullet that doesn't match either the guns issued to the cops or the gun allegedly found on a "parolee" identified by a youtube video.
And oh yeah, apparently, that guy either had a different shiny gun-looking object at home than the one he allegedly picks up in a youtube video that doesn't seem to exist on youtube, or the shiny gun-looking object lying on the ground in the youtube video that actually does exist on youtube is totally unrelated to the officer-involved shooting of Harding (as in the handgun was just lying on the sidewalk several yards from where a guy shot himself, and two different witnesses took both guns, and all the shell casings from the scene without several cops seeing anything). In either scenario, at least one gun is missing.
It is also possible that there were no guns other than those being fired by the police. Just because they weren't officially issued a .38 doesn't necessarily mean that they didn't shoot Kenneth Harding with a .38. Also, there were several other armed law enforcement officers on the scene, possibly UCSF security? One officer with a machine gun can be seen in video footage. What other kinds of guns were there?

2) Despite claims that officers had possession of Harding's gun 6 hours after the shooting, police are still seeking the "man in the hoodie." That also means that they raided some other random dude's house and arrested him and took his shiny .45-caliber gun for no reason other than to lie and say that they found Harding's gun (i.e. "proving" that Harding had shot at officers and deserved to be murdered).
However, if the "man in the hoodie" still has Harding's gun, then that means that the "man in the hoodie" really did pick it up off the sidewalk several yards in front of Harding's dying body. That means that Harding shot himself in the head, and then hurled the gun several yards forward. I'm no physicist, but I think that if a man shot himself with his right hand in the right side of his head while running at full speed forward, the gun he used wouldn't end up as far in front of him and as far to his left as the alleged shiny gun-looking object is in the now-infamous youtube video.
It is much more believable that Harding, assuming he had a gun and fired on officers in the first place, instinctively hurled the gun forward once he had already been the police.
Even if you take the "self-inflicted" wound theory seriously, you still have to be concerned that two cops fired 9 or so shots on a busy street, and only one hit the intended target in the leg.
That's the incompetent version of the wild wild west.
Over a $2 transit pass.
Eyewitnesses from the neighorhood claim that Harding was shot 5 times in the back of the neck. I am assuming that this includes people who were close enough to hear, and possibly see, the impact of multiple bullets, but that is only an assumption.

3) The woman in Seattle that Harding is being accused of mudering was not pregnant as previously reported. Hmmm. Who said she was pregnant, and why?

What the Bayview witnesses saw

SF Police Chief booed out of Bayview

SF Police Chief Greg Suhr turned tail and ran while being booed out of a community gathering organized in the Bayview neighborhood to address concerns over the police murder of 19 year-old Kenneth Harding (who was stopped by police as he exited a MUNI train without proof of fare on Saturday afternoon). Unlike Harding, Suhr was not shot in the back as he fled.
An hour and a half into the meeting at the Bayview Opera House, Suhr, who has only been on the job for three months, was "evacuated" by at least 20 officers and his command staff. There was an estimated 300 people in attendance.
“That’s right, walk away,” screamed one man, as the crowd surged around the officers. “You walking out ‘cause you know you not ready to deal with the reality,” a woman shouted into the microphone.

The anger in the predominantly black crowd revealed divisions within the community, with many younger community activists protesting the “establishment” approach of the older religious leaders. They claimed the leaders worked too much with police.
-Bay Citizen

It was the elders whom had organized the community gathering, largely to let the police explain themselves/obfuscate/slander the victim.
Harding ran away from the officers who had detained him, and according to several eyewitnesses, he was doing so at full speed without looking back at the officers. He was clearly running for his life. Media reports have called him a parolee, and have accused him of being linked to a recent violent crime in the Seattle area.
Multiple cell phone videos captured the immediate aftermath of the police shooting on Saturday, and Harding can be seen laying on the ground in a pool of his own blood, hopelessly fighting for his life as multiple officers stand over him with their guns pointed at him. An angry crowd forms, and the officers turn their attention to crowd control rather than providing assistance to the dying victim.

One particular video was used by police as "evidence" that a witness picked up an alleged gun that Harding allegedly fired at the officers during the chase. However, the witness in question clearly points to a flat rectangular object on the ground and can clearly be heard asking, "Is that your phone?" The man picks up the phone and disappears off screen.
Earlier in the video, another shiny object had come into view for less than a second, and police allege that the shiny object is Harding's gun. However, the alleged gun is several yards beyond where Harding lay dying, in the direction that he had been running (i.e. he would have had to have thrown, not dropped, the gun forward before he was shot, which, admittedly, is not exactly implausible). The shiny object is also several feet away from the cell phone that is picked up by the witness in the video. The witness does not look in the direction of, point to, or in any other way signal that he has noticed a gun lying on the sidewalk several feet away. Also, the person shooting the video does not notice the alleged gun, even though he/she appears to walk right next to it.
That didn't stop the police from lying and saying, through their media accomplices, that a video had been posted on youtube which showed a witness picking up Harding's gun. This was their excuse for not being able to find the gun for 6 hours, despite combing the entire area, including nearby rooftops, for the alleged weapon.

On Tuesday, 3 days after the shooting (and just before a protest that resulted in 43 arrests), the SFPD announced that they had found gunshot residue on Harding's right hand. The funny thing is, they still haven't announced that they have found any slugs or shell casings at the scene, and they haven't found Harding's fingerprints on the alleged gun. All they have is a video of a man picking up a cell phone off the ground, a dead man's police record, and alleged evidence of "gunshot residue" on the victim's hand (which is the easiest evidence to fake, since the police had three days to put that residue there after the fact - not to mention the fact that the presence of residue on someone's hand does not prove when or where a gun may have been fired by that hand).

In the end, whether or not Harding was an innocent saint, a pimp, a parolee, or even a man who shot at police while running away from them at full speed, he was clearly not a threat to the two police officers who shot at him, resulting in his death. It could easily be argued that shooting at a running suspect on a busy street in broad daylight was the most dangerous thing that happened that afternoon, and that type of police work should not be tolerated in any community.
Further, not possessing a $2 transit pass should not cost any human being their life, no matter what they may or may not have done in the past.

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

They be trippin

Bay area cops are off the hook right now.
They've been seeing revolutions on television.
They're seeing youtube footage of passive cops in other countries getting pelted with stones by angry mobs.
In this country, they've been hearing about flash mobs, and copper thefts, and they know that hella stuff is fallin off of trucks these days.
They're working longer shifts.
They're worried about their jobs.
They're worried about their pensions.
They're worried about the Federal government.
They know that thousands of prisoners are committing mass suicide to protest the inhumane conditions that they have kept them in.
They're on steroids.

Ever since the night of the Mehserle verdict, they've been wanting to get in some serious stick time...or worse.

They assassinated a guy in Hayward who had the most high-profile civil case against them on Friday. On Saturday, they killed a 2nd guy in SF in as many weeks, and they didn't just kill him, they made a spectacle of it. They wanted everyone to watch that boy die, hopelessly fighting to live...and even after he stopped fighting too. It was an old-fashioned lynching.
It didn't matter that they had shot him in the back as he ran for his life, because they got it like that. And they want us all to know.

Oscar Grant's best friend murdered

"Why do African American youth end up dead during pending federal lawsuits that allege excessive police force?"
-SF Bay View

Two and a half years after his best friend was murdered right in front of his eyes, and with a $5 million federal lawsuit (related to police misconduct on that same fateful New Year's morning in 2009) pending, 25 year-old Johntue Caldwell was shot dead in his car at a gas station in broad daylight on Friday.
Not surprisingly, the assassin has neither been located nor identified.
In all honesty, only the cops are suspected.
Johntue leaves behind two young sons.

Wendi Deng = Ray Lewis

Here is the video of Wendi Deng thwarting an attempted pie-ing of her husband, Rupert Murdoch.
She also gets a nice open-hand slap in on the top of the assailant's head.
Love the slo-mo action too.

For the record, there is another woman (perhaps Murdoch's counsel?) who initially stopped the assailant, but he probably would've overpowered her had it not been for Deng's lightning-quick reflexes. She closed the gap quickly and met the ball carrier at the line of scrimmage, pushed him back and kept him out of the end zone.

Murdoch's wife saves him from a pie in the face

Apparently, even though he turned on many of his subordinates during his testimony before Parliament today, Murdoch chooses his people well.
After Murdoch had given 2 hours of testimony in which he denied any involvement in the phone hacking scandal and pretended that only rogue reporters had engaged in the rather lengthy list of improprieties that led to the downfall of the News of the World tabloid, a protestor rushed the media tycoon with an apparent cream pie. The protestor was thwarted by Murdoch's 3rd and current wife, Wendi Deng (can't wait for footage), who is not an Australian, but apparently tackles like one.
Ah, the benefits of marrying someone less than half your age...
The cream/foam covered protestor was immediately detained by police.
It remains to be seen whether or not Deng, or anyone, can save Murdoch from all of the mud that is flying in his direction.

In a separate hearing today, lawmakers also heard testimony from London police regarding reports that officers took bribes from journalists in exchange for inside information and to ask why the force decided to shut down an earlier phone hacking probe after charging only two people.
The outgoing top cop in London, Sir Paul Stephenson, admitted that 22% of Soctland Yard's press officers had worked for Murdoch's News International at some point in their careers.

Monday, July 18, 2011

The Fall of Rupert Murdoch

Bloomberg has said that News Corp has said that COO Chase Carey may succeed Rupert Murdoch as CEO, pending the media tycoon's performance before the UK Parliament on Tuesday.
News Corp. executives who watched Murdoch, 80, rehearse for his appearance had concerns about how he handled questions, according to three people, who weren’t authorized to speak publicly. Murdoch and his son James are scheduled to discuss the company’s role in the alleged phone hacking of murder victims, members of the royal family and others by the News of the World, which was closed on July 10.

Should that performance not be satisfactory, it could end Murdoch's 6 decade run as a CEO. Then again, he does own the controlling interest in the company, and ultimately could replace the board. However, he is clearly smart enough to do what's best for his company.
This is a great video on Murdoch, courtesy of our friends at Bloomberg.
He's come a long way baby. Apparently too far.
Rupert Murdoch is almost the black male of mainstream media. Shot in the back. Left to bleed on the sidewalk like some grotesque spectacle. It's probably all because he's Australian too.

Also in the news today:
- The original phone hacking scandal whistleblower, former News of the World reporter Sean Hoare, was found dead at home.

- Standard & Poor’s said yesterday it may lower News Corp.’s corporate debt rating because of “business and reputation risks” stemming from the phone-hacking scandal.

- John Yates, the cop who tried to coverup the phone hacking scandal, resigned as Assistant Commissioner of the Metropolitan Police over his links to Neil Wallis, the former deputy editor of the News of the World.

- Internet hacktivists LulzSec defaced the sites of Murdoch’s other U.K. tabloid, The Sun, and shut down the website of The Times of London. Visitors to The Sun website were redirected to a page featuring a story saying Murdoch's dead body had been found in his garden.

Police in SF murder second man in 2 weeks

On Saturday July 16, at 4:40 pm. a 19 year-old man was shot 6 to 10 times by SFPD, and his lifeless body was left in plain view in a pool of blood. He had originally been detained by officers for not possessing a MUNI transfer pass. Police claim that he was armed and fired at them (while running away) before they murdered him, but it took almost 6 hours for them to produce the alleged handgun.
Another video was posted on youtube that claims to capture footage of the handgun, but it is far from conclusive regarding whether or not the shiny object is in fact a weapon. The person who took the footage doesn't appear interested in the alleged handgun while they are filming the video, so it's hard to know if they knew whether or not it was a gun when they were shooting the video, or if they decided that after hearing the police account and viewing their footage on a bigger screen.
The video does not focus on the alleged weapon, but it does catch a witness on the scene pointing to and picking up a shiny, flat, rectangular object (it looks like a cell phone) that had been lying on the ground several feet from where the alleged gun was allegedly lying. He does not point to any other objects lying on the ground, nor does he appear to be looking at anything else on the ground. The witness disappears off camera after that and is not seen again. Police have claimed that this footage proves that the man picked up the gun and hid it from police for 6 hours.

This killing happened 13 days after the lethal shooting of homeless man Charles Blair Hill on the Civic Center BART platform by BART police.

A press conference has been scheduled for noon by SF Education Not Incarceration, the Idriss Stelley Foundation & the SF Bayview Newspaper. It will take place at the corner of 3rd Street & Oakdale.

Interestingly, the SF Bay View website has been down all morning...

Sunday, July 17, 2011

US to increase military aid to Philippines

As if this coast guard cutter wasn't enough, the US government is set to send over a whole lot more outdated gas-guzzling hand-me-downs.
Although it has not yet officially done so, the US congress is allegedly committed to increasing "defense and security assistance" to the Philippines. Very committed. They're actually offering $30 billion, which is double the amount requested by the White House.
“We welcome US engagement with our country because we share the same values of democracy, freedom and rule of law.”
-Phillipine Foreign Affairs Secretary Alberto Romulo

That's actually a true statement.
This one wasn't though.
“The Philippine government remains fully committed and determined to address issues in relation to the protection and promotion of human rights,” he said.
-Philippine Star

Obama has apparently asked Congress to drop 3 conditions on the $30 billion assistance package. All 3 conditions have to do with human rights:
1)take human rights violations seriously
2)hold the military accountable for human rights violations
3)don't let the military commit human rights violations
Maybe they were a bit redundant, but Obama wants them ALL gone. Clearly, both governments do share the same views on the value of democracy, freedom and rule of law.
Conveniently coincidentally, the Philippines allegedly has beef with China over the Spratly issue, and the Abu Sayyaf have allegedly kidnapped two more Fil-Ams. And now the US Congress is rewarding a military with a horrible human rights track record with $30 billion for next year, but Obama doesn't want them to have to improve that track record. In fact, Philippine government forces violated a ceasefire amidst peace negotiations with the Moro Islamic Liberation Front just last week.
Is the increased aid for focusing on fighting the Abu Sayyaf and China? Well, the Philippine military doesn't stand a chance against China (especially not with old coast guard cutters), and their track record against the Abu Sayaff hasn't been much better either.
However, a lot of excess inventory can be liquidated (i.e. cut from the budget) and a lot of exercises could be exercised with $30 billion.

And btw, Hillary is scheduled to visit Manila in mid-November. Can't wait.

California prison hunger strike starting 3rd week

To protest inhumane conditions, prisoners in the Pelican Bay Security Housing Unit (SHU) began a huger strike on July 1. Prisoners in the SHUs at Corcoran and Folsom joined them. Now, not only are pisoners throughout the state prison system hunger striking in solidarity, but family and friends of prisoners are as well.
“The prisoners are progressing rapidly to the organ damaging consequences of dehydration. They are not drinking water and have decompensated rapidly. A few have tried to sip water but are so sick that they are vomiting it back up. Some are in renal failure and have been unable to make urine for three days. Some are having measured blood sugars in the 30 range, which can be fatal if not treated.”

A few have tried to sip water but are so sick that they are vomiting it back up.
SHU prisoners at Pelican Bay have said they are willing to risk their lives and will continue to strike until their demands are met.
-SF Bay View

The California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation (CDCR) finally responded to pressure from strikers and outside supporters, and on Thursday began initial negotiations with the Pelican Bay SHU strike leaders and an outside mediation team approved of by the prisoners.
A peaceful general strike is now being called for in all California prisons.

Click here for more info about the strike and to take action.

Rupert Murdoch is actually much worse than Richard Nixon

But I like the analogy anyway.
Here's an interesting CNN interview with Carl Bernstein, who compares the News of the World phone hacking scandal to Watergate.

The situation is so bad that even top cops are losing their jobs over it. Today, Sir Paul Stephenson, the head of Scotland Yard, resigned just hours after his officers arrested Rebekah Brooks, who up until Friday had been chief of Rupert Murdoch’s News International. And so the highly entertaining implosion of the Murdoch media empire continues. For now, it's only happening in the UK.
For now.
Hours after Brooks resigned her post on Friday, her predecessor at News International, Les Hinton, also resigned his post as CEO of Dow Jones, another Murdoch media entity. Dow Jones publishes The Wall Street Journal.
Oh yeah, and then there's this too.
Meanwhile, the FBI is also investigating News Corp. after a report that employees or associates may have tried to hack into phone conversations and voice mail of September 11 survivors, victims and their families.

Murdoch's News Corp. encompasses Fox News, The Wall Street Journal, the New York Post and Harper Collins publishers in the United States. News International -- a British subsidiary of News Corp. -- owns the Sun, The Times and The Sunday Times in Britain.

Needless to say, this is pretty huge.
Murdoch stormed onto the scene as an unprecedented 4th television network in 1986. It seems like his presence at the table is no longer welcome.

Friday, July 15, 2011

Cops shake down/shut down girls' lemonade stand

Police in Georgia shut down a lemonade stand run by teenage girls who were trying to raise money for a trip to a water park.
Apparently the cops demanded that the girls pony up a $50 per day permit fee.
The girls are now doing chores and yard work to make money.
-Huffington Post

Why I call the debt talks a puppet show/telenovela

A young hot shot rookie Senator once said these words on the Senate floor:
The fact that we are here today to debate raising America’s debt limit is a sign of leadership failure. It is a sign that the U.S. Government can’t pay its own bills. It is a sign that we now depend on ongoing financial assistance from foreign countries to finance our Government’s reckless fiscal policies...Increasing America’s debt weakens us domestically and internationally. Leadership means that “the buck stops here.” Instead, Washington is shifting the burden of bad choices today onto the backs of our children and grandchildren. America has a debt problem and a failure of leadership. Americans deserve better.
-Senator Barack Obama
March 20, 2006

BTW - Under President Barack Obama's watch, several trillion has been added to the national debt, several new fronts have been opened up in Cheney/Bush's infinite war by terror, the Federal government has been raiding Social Security funds, and read my lips....the rich are not paying any more taxes.

Oakland city job cuts announced

It turns out that fewer jobs will be cut than were officially projected last week, but still more are likely on the chopping block for later in the year.
56 city employees are headed out the door in the next couple weeks, with unions reporting that the deepest impacts will be seen in the physical maintenance of the city.
-Inside Bay Area

Here are some of the casualties:
- The city's long-dwindling Litter Enforcement Program, which enforced illegal dumping laws, is now completely gone.
- The police department will be budgeted for 636 officers this year and 588 next year.
- Starting July 2012, the fire department will close two fire houses per day on a rotating basis.
- The Live Oak Pool at Oakland High School will no longer be open in the summer.
- Elected officials will take a 15% pay cut.

Given that some fuzzy math was used to pass the budget last month, we'll revisit this same situation (or likely an even more dire one) next year, in an even dirtier, more blighted, more overgrown city.

World Revolution Update

While Obama and congressional leaders were playing out their puppet show at the White House, the Bernank told Congress that gold wasn't money this week, and gold reacted by shooting through the roof.
Meanwhile, the puppet show continues...

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

The last of the Christian Western empires

"It's inevitable the US is going to default."

This is seriously one of the best videos I've seen in a long time.
Emergent's David Murrin breaks down the global economic situation for three ditzy talking heads. It's more hilarious than the telenovela goin down inside the beltway.
"It's very simple, its (America's) empire system, its financial system is in decline, we've seen very little growth for over a decade apart from financial engineering and leveraging, which ultimately caused the debt crisis of 2008," Murrin said.

Defintely must see tv.

Recycling collapse

The city of Dayton, Ohio is fighting crime and blight by tearing down thousands of vacant homes, and they're creating jobs in the process.
Surrounded by blighted properties where families once lived, some for generations, I'm a huge fan of this program.

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Radioactive rainwater in Pacific Northwest

Visit for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy

2 Americans abducted in the Southern Philippines

Here we go again.
Gunmen abducted two American citizens along with their Filipino relative from a southern Philippines island Tuesday, police said.

At about 3 a.m., 14 armed men snatched Gerfa Yeatts Lunsmann, 43, her son, Kevin, 14, and Lunsmann's Filipino nephew, Romnick Jakaria, 19, said Nonito Asbai, the area's police chief inspector.

Police and the Filipino navy have launched search operations, Asbai said.

The victims were forced at gunpoint to board awaiting boats, which then sped toward the troubled island of Basilan, a stronghold of the Islamic militant group Abu Sayyaf.

No one, however, has claimed responsibility for the abduction or asked for a ransom.

This was the type of stuff that filled the news during the early heyday of George Dumbya's war by terror.
Shortly after Bill Clinton was impeached but not removed from office in 1999, former action-movie-star-turned-Philippine-President Joseph Estrada became embroiled in his own scandal when allegations surfaced that he had consolidated most organized crime in the country under him. Elected in 1998 after successfully helping to lead a campaign in the Senate that evicted the US military from their Philippine bases, Estrada survived an impeachment trial in late 2000, but not a military coup in early 2001. Just a few weeks after the US Supreme Court selected George W. Bush to be President, the Philippine Supreme Court selected Vice-President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo as Estrada's successor. Like Bush, Macapagal-Arroyo's father was a former President known for being a lapdog for the bankstas.
Macapagal-Arroyo, a Harvard alum, was an eager ally during the early days of Dumbya's infinite war, and allowed US troops to return to the Philippines, largely because of a conveniently-timed Abu Sayyaf kidnapping campaign. The Philippines was dubbed "the second front" in the war on terror.

The Abu Sayyaf was started by people who learned their trade as Mujaheddin in Afghanistan (i.e. they were trained by the CIA). They serve as a convenient excuse for US military operations in the Southern Philippines, a historically muslim region that was not conquered by either the Spanish or the United States. Hence, it is a resource-rich region that multinationals are not exploiting sufficiently. US-puppet regimes in Manila have re-settled the area with former Maoist insurgents from the Northern Philippines who had signed peace-deals with the government. Not surprisingly, it is known for lawlessness and violent strife. However, none of the legitimate muslim separatist movements in the region ally themselves with the Abu Sayyaf, obviously because they know that they are connected to the CIA. The Abu Sayyaf, even when they are holding hostages, are able to roam about in their territory freely despite intense military crackdowns that are led/backed up by the latest and greatest US intelligence technology.
It shouldn't be any surprise that, amidst the ever-more-apparent reality of peak oil and worldwide economic collapse, the Abu Sayyaf has once again kinapped Americans. The bankstas dredged up the Osama bimn Laden boogeyman a few months ago, and it only makes sense that the Abu Sayyaf would not be far behind as well.
This time around though, there is the added issue of increased tensions with China over the Spratly issue. Obviously, the CIA realized that Filipinos weren't overly concerned about the Spratlys, and perhaps needed a better excuse to send more military "advisors" to the area.
Philippine military officials were quick to implicate the Moro Islamic Liberation Front as the perpetrators, but even CNN knows better.
Needless to say, this latest development warrants our attention.

Sunday, July 10, 2011

Not quite Revolutionary, but Gangsta

Steady mobbin.
And it aint hard to understand.
As society deteriorates, blacks in America are feeling it more than others.
In 2004, the median net worth of white households was $134,280, compared with $13,450 for black households, according to an analysis of Federal Reserve data by the Economic Policy Institute. By 2009, the median net worth for white households had fallen 24 percent to $97,860; the median black net worth had fallen 83 percent to $2,170.
-Huffington Post

Fortunately, most blacks have had a lot of practice suffering through hard times.
In this community, Friday's disappointing jobs report appeared to change little if anything, merely affirming an unmistakeable reality: a chronic shortage of jobs.
-Huffington Post

For now, many hold out hope that Obama can bring about some positive change, but there are clearly many others who are taking matters in their own hands.
Civilization is largely dependent on the people respecting authority. The authorities have proven themselves to be a fraud, and people have lost respect. More and more people will follow suit as more and more of the fraud comes to light.

This actually reminds of a recent story from my personal life.
Two of the houses along my property are vacant. They only recently became that way. I saw a broken window one morning, and then all of the windows on both houses were covered with plywood by nightfall. The other day, I overheard a heated conversation at the one that had been getting work done on it by a new owner. Apparently, thieves had stolen all the copper pipes and wiring out of it.
And that's what you deserve for kicking out the family that had been living there.

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Filipinos afraid to take a stance in Spratly row?

I guess I shouldn't be surprised by the Philippine Left's relative silence over the issue of Chinese violation of Philippine sovereign territory in the Philippines. So-called "Nationalists" are wary of any excuse to increase US military involvement in the region, and rightfully so.
However, just because you don't want the US to have an excuse to intervene/occupy doesn't mean that it's okay for another imperial country to steal your resources.
That's what this issue is really about.
Both countries have been stealing Philippine resources for generations. Both countries are promoting civil war in the Philippines, from multiple sides. Neither country has the best interests of the Filipino people in mind.
However, the hardcore Philippine Left is dominated by maoists, who, for obvious reasons, seem to feel that China can do no wrong. In contrast, they will make all kinds of noise to protest whenever the United States steals oil from any other country.
I understand that people are afraid that taking a Nationalist stance on the Spratly issue plays into the hands of the western imperialists, but sitting on your hands while China steals your vital resources is an even worse strategy. China ain't run by Mao. China is runnin with the bankstas...even after getting slapped across the face with a Christine Lagarde appointment as IMF chief.
This is just another example of how blind devotion to ideology leaves you...well, blind.
On the other hand though, a series of protests is being called for today in front of Chinese embassies in the US. The protests are being organized by Fil-Ams that are not exactly nationalists. They will most likely be calling for US assistance/intervention. I don't agree with that either.
It's a complex issue that requires everyone to look at the big picture. The big picture is, China is stealing vital resources from the Philippines, and that ain't right.

Independence Day weekend lawlessness

Our founding fathers would be proud.
Over the holiday weekend, vandals in Minnesota caused $35,000 worth of damage to a state park that is closed due to governmental shutdown.
"This is just exactly the type of thing we're going to be seeing repeatedly as the shutdown goes forward," said Steve Morse, former lawmaker and DNR deputy commissioner who is now executive director of the Minnesota Environmental Partnership. "It shows once again how difficult it is to extricate the state from our lives, and the problems that are going to come to light once something like this happens."
-The Star-Tribune

Unfortunately, it wasn't just closed, unstaffed parks that inspired lawlessness over the Independence day weekend.

On Sunday night, a gas station/convenience store in Milwaukee was overrun by a mob shortly before midnight, and minutes later, a mob, possibly the same one, began attacking people in a nearby waterfront park. According to eyewitnesses, the attacks in the park were racially-motivated.

Cops and firefighters in Peoria, Illinois came under attack when they responded to a burning trash bin during a holiday fireworks display in the ghetto. Perhaps it was by a bunch of other city workers who got laid off after a career of paying into their own pension funds...unlike cops and firefighters.

On Monday night, a mob in Philadelphia attacked passengers on a 69th Street-bound El train full of passengers returning home after a fireworks show.

What's worse than a rampaging flash mob?
Gangster's with badges.
On Sunday evening, two officers responded to reports of a drunken man on the platform of the Civic Center station. Exactly what happened is unclear. What we know is that the man had a knife out and was also using a bottle as a weapon; that some sort of confrontation ensued; that, with passengers on the platform, at least one of the officers fired at least three shots; that one of the officers had a Taser but never used it; that the man was shot in the torso from unknown range, and that he's dead.

Chief Kenton Rainey says he doesn't know if deadly force was the only option. But, asked whether the officers followed protocol, he said Sunday morning, "From what I know at this point, yes, I'm comfortable with what has occurred."
-Inside Bay Area

Ummmm, as a frequent BART rider, I'm not at all comfortable with a 2nd BART cop killing in four years.

Saturday, July 2, 2011

Cell phone safety documentary

"This could become the most important public health threat of our generation."
This is a great video that isn't getting very much run. This subject is not getting enough run. Cell phones are arguably the most important technology of our era. We should be asking questions about how safe it is to use them.

County Supervisor calls for secession by 13 counties in Southern California

"I am a Northern Californian by birth. No one I know in Northern California would oppose getting rid of Southern California."
-SoCal Economist John Husing

Fed up with high taxes and continued raids on local government funds, Riverside County Supervisor Jeff Stone proposed on Thursday that his county should lead the way in getting the counties of Riverside, Imperial, San Diego, Orange, San Bernardino, Kings, Kern, Fresno, Tulare, Inyo, Madera, Mariposa and Mono to secede from California to form the new state of South California.
"We have a state Legislature that has gone wild. They just don't care. Their goal was to get a balanced budget so they could continue to get a paycheck," Stone said by telephone late Thursday. "There is only one solution: A serious secession from the liberal arm of the state of California. I know the state of California can do better."

The proposal came the same day Brown signed budget legislation that will divert about $14 million in 2011-12 vehicle license fee revenue from four new Riverside County cities: Eastvale, Jurupa Valley, Menifee and Wildomar. Officials said the cut would cripple the new cities and possibly force them to disincorporate.
The Press-Enterprise

Not many people think the suggestion has a chance of success. Without Los Angeles county added to that mix, the new state of South California still wouldn't have any money.

Friday, July 1, 2011

DSK accuser admitted that she lied

So much for that case.
The accuser initially told prosecutors and the grand jury she fled to the hallway after the incident and waited for Strauss-Kahn to leave, and informed a supervisor of what happened shortly after, prosecutors said.

"The complainant (accuser) has since admitted that this account was false and that after the incident in Suite 2806, she proceeded to clean a nearby room and then returned to Suite 2806 and began to clean that suite before she reported the incident to her supervisor," the letter said.

Obviously, this doesn't prove that DSK didn't rape her, but it does mean that her credibility is shot, and that's more important in this legal system.
If charges are eventually dropped, Strauss-Kahn, 62, may be motivated to bring a civil suit against New York City police officers or prosecutors in the District Attorney's office.

"He lost his position at the IMF," said Michael Joseph, an attorney who specializes in malicious prosecutions. "His economic damages are potentially huge."
-Thomson Reuters

He can't sue to get back his frontrunning political clout back though.

Weekly World Revolution Update