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Gender: Male
Current location: Potlandia
Member since: Fri Sep 28, 2007, 04:39 PM
Number of posts: 9,650

Journal Archives

Another unarmed man murdered by Police in cold blood in California

Perez's family says the accusation that Perez was "reaching for the officer's gun" is ridiculous and untrue. They plan to sue the city.

Witnesses: Officer stepped back, gunned down California man outside liquor store
TRAVIS GETTYS * 22 SEP 2014 * Raw Story

Family members plan to sue the police officer who shot an unarmed 24-year-old California man last week outside a liquor store. Richard “Pedie” Perez was shot to death Sept. 14 by Richmond police Officer Wallace Jensen after he refused to show his identification.

A clerk called police to report that Perez, who had been drinking earlier in the evening at a party, had gone behind the counter and grabbed a bottle of Hennessy cognac without paying. Police said at least one independent witness can back the officer’s claims, but Perez’s family said other witnesses dispute the police account.

Everyone has said consistently said that he did not reach for the officer’s gun and the officer stepped back five feet away and emptied five shots into his young body,” said civil rights attorney John Burris.


Police brutality/murder of citizens continues - Seven incidents in one week

WTF? Alternet will not allow copy/paste of their articles anymore? just the link .. whatever.


Oh Boy, Here we go --> Rob't Gates: "U.S. Will Need Some Boots On The Ground To Defeat ISIS"

Robert Gates Says U.S. Will Need Some Boots On The Ground To Defeat Islamic State In Iraq
09/21/2014 11:36 am EDT Updated: 32 minutes ago

WASHINGTON -- Former Secretary of Defense Robert Gates said Sunday that it is unlikely the United States can accomplish the goals President Barack Obama has laid out for defeating Islamic State militant groups in Iraq without putting some "boots on the ground."

"What I believe, and what I suspect most military people believe, is that given the mission the president has assigned, which is degrade and destroy, that to be able to do that, some small number of American advisers, trainers, Special Forces and forward spotters, forward air controllers, are going to have to be in harm's way," Gates said in an appearance on ABC's "This Week."

Gates said he thinks the number of troops needed, however, "will be very small."

Obama said last week that U.S. forces "do not and will not have a combat mission" in Iraq. Gen. Martin Dempsey, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, said at a hearing earlier this week that there is no intention to have ground operations in Iraq, but also outlined some circumstances in which it could be necessary.

Gates said he agrees with Obama's assessment that the U.S. should wait until a new government is in place in Iraq to determine how to proceed. "This Week" host George Stephanopoulos noted that Gates has warned against getting involved in ground combat in places such as Iraq. Gates suggested the U.S. should proceed with caution.


John Yoo on CSPAN2?

Why is this man not in Federal Prison again? .. instead of on Public TV
hawking is latest book on how cool it is to torture people.

Of course there will be "no AMERICAN boots on the ground"

ALL of our shoes are now being made in CHINA. ~Steven Colbert

Wisconsin Election Officials and Advocates Scrambling After Voter ID Reinstated

This is totally nuts. Pity the voters in Wisconsin.

Wisconsin Election Officials and Advocates Scrambling After Voter ID Reinstated
Friday, 19 September 2014 11:06
By Brendan Fischer, PRWatch | News Analysis

Wisconsin election officials and advocates are being forced to make an "extraordinary effort" to adjust to voter ID restrictions that were just reinstated by a federal appellate court. Thousands of absentee ballots have already been sent to voters, and the majority of Department of Motor Vehicle service centers that issue IDs are only open only two days per week.

On September 12, just seven weeks before election day, a panel of three 7th Circuit appellate judges -- all appointed by Republican presidents -- reinstated Wisconsin's voter ID law, which federal district Judge Lynn Adelman had blocked in April as unconstitutional and violative of the Voting Rights Act.

Around 300,000 Wisconsin voters don't have the forms of identification required to vote under the law, a disproportionate number of whom are people of color. Opponents of the law have asked the full 7th Circuit to review the September 12 ruling, but if the order stands, all voters will now have to bring identification to the polls, which they have not needed in the past.

Colombia Is Taking On Its Billionaires - Why Can't We?

Colombia Is Taking On Its Billionaires - Why Can't We?
Thursday, 18 September 2014 13:52
By The Daily Take Team, The Thom Hartmann Program | Op-Ed

America's billionaires are driving this nation's poverty epidemic. But it doesn't have to be that way.
As we speak, working-class Americans are getting screwed over by policies that favor the wealthy elite, and leave everyone else in the dust. As a result, more and more Americans are living in poverty.

In 2013, over 45 million Americans were living in poverty, including one in five children, and today, around 4 percent of our population lives on $2 per day or less. Unfortunately, our lawmakers in Washington would rather continue pandering to the needs of the rich and famous, than confront the very real poverty epidemic that is crippling our country.

Like America, Colombia is struggling with its own poverty epidemic brought on by extremely high levels of wealth inequality and by wealthy Colombians who aren't doing their fair share to help the economy.

Colombia is the seventh most unequal country in the world, with a staggering 32 percent of Colombians living in poverty. In rural areas of that country, the poverty rate jumps to just under 47 percent.

Meanwhile, just like here in America, there is a small number of very wealthy people who are doing very little to help the Colombian economy and working-class Colombians. But that's changing.


USA Has Largest Prison Population In World — And It’s Growing?

Seriously. WTF is up with the USA locking-up more of our own citizens that ANY NATION ON EARTH?
What further "evidence" do I need to conclude that this nation already IS a police state? None, sadly.

The United States Has The Largest Prison Population In The World — And It’s Growing

Both in raw numbers and by percentage of the population, the United States has the most prisoners of any developed country in the world — and it has the largest total prison population of any nation. That didn’t change in 2013. After several years in which the prison population dropped slightly, the raw number of inmates in United States custody went up again in 2013.

More than 1.57 million inmates sat behind bars in federal, state, and county prisons and jails around the country as of December 31, 2013. In the federal prisons, more than half of those sentenced to a stints of a year or longer are still there for drug crimes. In states including Louisiana, Mississippi, Oklahoma, Texas, Alabama, Arkansas, Arizona, and Georgia, at least 1 percent of male residents were in prison on December 31. And across the country, racial disparities persist. Black men are six times more likely than white men to be in prison. Hispanic men are 2.4 times more likely, according to a Sentencing Project analysis of the data.

This doesn’t paint the full picture of the U.S. incarceration system. Many have estimated the total number of U.S. incarceration to be more than 2.4 million. This is in part because another estimated 12 million individuals cycle through the county jail systems in a given year for periods of less than a year, and are therefore not factored into a snapshot on December 31. There are also other mechanisms of incarceration not factored into this figure, including immigration detention, civil commitment, and Indian Country facilities, according to a Prison Policy Initiative briefing.
And a vastly greater number of Americans — 1 in 31 according to 2009 Pew figures — are under U.S. corrections custody either through parole, probation, or incarceration. One in three Americans have a criminal record, according to recent FBI estimates.


Oh! Really? "Obama Is Open to Ground Troops in Iraq, Top General Says"

So which is it? Boots on the ground in Iraq? .. or Not?

Obama Is Open to Ground Troops in Iraq, a Top General Says
George Zornick * The Nation * September 16, 2014 - 11:14 AM ET

President Obama has repeatedly declared there will be no combat troops on the ground in Iraq to fight the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant. But a Senate hearing Tuesday with top US military officials revealed that pronouncement is on very shaky ground—there is now no question ground troops are under active consideration at the highest levels of government.

General Martin Dempsey, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, said in his opening remarks he isn’t ruling out asking Obama for ground troops. “To be clear, if we reach the point where I believe our advisers should accompany Iraqi troops on attacks against specific ISIL targets, I will recommend that to the president.” Dempsey also testified that the president asked him “to come back to him on a case-by-case basis” on the subject of ground troops.

There are currently about 1,600 US troops on the ground in Iraq serving in “advisory” roles. Dempsey reiterated several times he could imagine scenarios in which he would want them to switch into more active roles, though his potential rationale for doing so changed in striking ways throughout the hearing.

Dempsey first said, in a response to a question from Senator Carl Levin, the chairman of the Senate Armed Services Committee, “If there are threats to the United States, then of course I would go back to the president and make a recommendation that may include the use of US military ground forces.” But moments later, in a response to a question from Senator Jack Reed, he outlined an entirely different scenario that would involve US troops heading into battle without a clear threat to the United States.

“If the Iraqi security forces and the pesh were at some point ready to retake Mosul, a mission that I would find to be extraordinarily complex, it could very well be part of that particular mission to provide close combat advising or accompanying for that mission,” Dempsey said. “But for the day-to-day activities that I anticipate will evolve over time, I don’t see it to be necessary right now.”

Truthout: Obama Declares Perpetual War

Meet the "new war" just like the old one.

Obama Declares Perpetual War
Monday, 15 September 2014 10:15
By Marjorie Cohn * Truthout

President Barack Obama escalated the drone war he has conducted for the past five and a half years by declaring his intention to "degrade and ultimately destroy" the Islamic State, also known as ISIS, or ISIL. Since August 8, Obama has mounted at least 154 airstrikes in Iraq. He will send 475 additional US troops, increasing the total number in Iraq to about 1,600. Obama announced he would conduct "a systematic campaign of airstrikes" in Iraq, and possibly in Syria. But, not limiting himself to those countries, Obama declared the whole world his battlefield, stating "We will hunt down terrorists who threaten our country, wherever they are . . . if you threaten America, you will find no safe haven."

If, indeed, there were an imminent threat of attack on the United States, Obama would be legally entitled to launch a military operation. The United Nations Charter, which prohibits the use of military force, allows an exception when a country acts in self-defense. Under the well-established Caroline doctrine, the "necessity for self-defense must be instant, overwhelming, leaving no choice of means, and no moment for deliberation." The only problem is, Obama admitted, "We have not yet detected specific plotting against our homeland." Citing only the vague possibility of future "deadly attacks," Obama nevertheless declared a perpetual war with no specific end time.

The only other exception to the UN Charter's prohibition on military force is when the Security Council has given its approval. Obama said he would chair a meeting of the Council in two weeks' time to "mobilize the international community." But the Charter requires that the Council countenance the military operation before it occurs. The proposed resolution the Council is slated to adopt will reportedly call on countries to criminalize recruitment and travel of foreign fighters that join extremist military forces, and require the sharing of airline passenger information. It will not, however, authorize military force. Obama's war violates the UN Charter, a treaty the United States has ratified, making it part of US law under the Supremacy Clause of the US Constitution.

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