marble falls's Journal
Name: herb morehead
Gender: Do not display
Hometown: marble falls, tx
Member since: Thu Feb 23, 2012, 03:49 AM
Number of posts: 4,130
Gender: Do not display
Hometown: marble falls, tx
Member since: Thu Feb 23, 2012, 03:49 AM
Number of posts: 4,130
Oil down sharply on looming US government shutdown
Published: September 29, 2013 Updated 26 minutes ago
By PABLO GORONDI — Associated Press
KUALA LUMPUR, Malaysia — The price of oil fell sharply on Monday, to below $102 a barrel, amid concerns that U.S. political leaders might not be able to reach a deal on a federal budget needed to avoid a partial shutdown of the government.
By early afternoon in Europe, the benchmark oil contract for November delivery was down $1.36 to $101.51 a barrel in electronic trading on the New York Mercantile Exchange. The contract fell 16 cents to close at $102.87 a barrel on Friday.
The U.S. government will reach its borrowing limit, or debt ceiling, on Tuesday. If Congress doesn't raise that limit, the government won't be able to pay all its bills and some 800,000 of the 2.1 million federal employees will not go to work.
A lasting solution seems far off as the White House and Republican lawmakers still disagree sharply on spending cuts and other key budget issues.
"The economy will slow down, confidence will slide and demand for crude will be hurt," said Evan Lucas, analyst with IG in Melbourne. "There will be a real snowball effect if the partial shutdown goes ahead."
Goldman Sachs estimated that a three-week shutdown would slow the economy's annual growth rate in the October-December quarter by up to 0.9 percentage points. If so, the growth rate next quarter would be a scant 1.6 percent, compared with market expectations of a 2.5 percent growth.
After climbing to over $110 in late August, the price of oil has been mostly falling for three straight weeks as diplomatic efforts surrounding Syria and Iran eased concerns about Middle East supplies.
"Political crises in Italy and the U.S. mean risk is off the menu, while receding geopolitical concerns in the Middle East and excess supply are also weighing on the price of oil," said Fawad Razaqzada, an analyst at GFT Markets in London.
Eileen Ng in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, contributed to this report.
Read more here: http://www.theolympian.com/2013/09/29/2750920/oil-lower-amid-jitters-over-us.html#storylink=cpy
Posted by marble falls | Mon Sep 30, 2013, 09:55 AM (0 replies)
3 Ex-Soldiers Accused of Plot to Kill DEA Agent
NEW YORK September 27, 2013 (AP)
By LARRY NEUMEISTER Associated Press
Two former American soldiers — one nicknamed "Rambo" — and a German ex-soldier faced charges Friday that they plotted to kill a U.S. drug enforcement agent and an informant for $800,000 in an assassination plan created by drug agents who wanted to catch trained snipers gone bad, authorities said.
The charges were announced by prosecutors in Manhattan, where an indictment unsealed in federal court portrayed a trio of ex-soldiers eager to kill for money.
"That's fun, actually; for me, that's fun. I love this work," the ex-German soldier was quoted in court papers as saying. The documents described numerous conversations at meetings in Asia, Africa and the Caribbean from January through September that were recorded by Drug Enforcement Administration agents building a case through confidential sources posing as Colombian drug traffickers.
When assassinations of a federal agent and an informant were proposed, Hunter "didn't flinch at the chance," Bharara said. He boasted that his men could handle both jobs, the prosecutor said, adding that "from there, it was off to the races."
According to the indictment, Hunter served in the U.S. Army from 1983 to 2004 before becoming a contract killer who successfully arranged several slayings. At one meeting, Hunter was captured on tape describing how he had arranged the killings of real estate agents. Authorities said those killings had occurred outside the United States, though they did not provide specifics.
The indictment said Vamvakias served in the U.S. Army from 1991 to 1993 and from 1999 to 2004. He was a sergeant, serving stints in South Korea and later as a military police officer in Puerto Rico.
Gogel was in the German armed forces from 2007 to 2010, attaining the rank of corporal and receiving commendations for his sniper skills, the court papers said. He was deployed for a time in Kosovo.
Two others were arrested on drug charges. Slawomir Soborski, 40, a citizen of Poland, was a member of an elite counterterrorism unit while serving in the Polish military in two stints between 1998 and 2011. He later worked as a security contractor in Iraq, Afghanistan, Haiti and elsewhere, court papers said. Michael Filter, 29, served in the German armed forces from 2006 to 2009. Both were in custody in Estonia, awaiting extradition proceedings.
To prepare for the assassination plot, Vamvakias and Gogel offered ideas and plans, including the need for machine guns, cyanide, a grenade, masks and appropriate weapons, the indictment said.
The court papers said Gogel provided the DEA source with two sophisticated latex facemasks that could make the wearer appear to be of another race. The masks were among items Gogel and Vamvakias brought along when they arrived in Liberia on Wednesday planning to carry out the murder-for-hire plot, the indictment said.
and these are the easy to catch goofballs. What about the truly able ones out there wandering around, on a mission?
Posted by marble falls | Sat Sep 28, 2013, 09:22 AM (2 replies)
Head of Barilla pasta company: Gays can eat someone else’s pasta
Guido Barilla, president of the family-owned Barilla pasta company, said in a radio interview on Wednesday that his company only supports “the traditional family” and that LGBT people “can go eat someone else’s pasta.” According to John Aravosis at Americablog, Barilla has since backtracked on his remarks somewhat, but many LGBT people around the world are reacting angrily to the slam by the head of the massive, global brand.
“We won’t include gays in our ads, because we like the traditional family,” Barilla told an interviewer. “If gays don’t like it, they can always eat another brand of pasta. Everyone is free to do what they want, provided it doesn’t bother anyone else.”
Barilla said today that he meant no ill will toward LGBT people with his remarks, saying in a statement, “With reference to statements made yesterday, I apologize if my words have generated controversy or misunderstanding, or if they have hurt the sensibilities of some people. In the interview I simply wanted to highlight the central role of the woman in the family.”
He also said that he has “the utmost respect for any person, without distinction of any kind,” and “the greatest respect for gays and for the freedom of expression of anyone.”
Reuters reported that rights groups are calling for a boycott of Barilla’s pastas, sauces and other foods.
Aurelio Mancuso of Equality Italia called Barilla’s remarks an “offensive provocation” and added that “(w)e accept the invitation from the Barilla owner to not eat his pasta.”
Gay Italian minister of parliament Alessandro Zan tweeted, “You can’t mess around with consumers, including gay ones.”
Posted by marble falls | Thu Sep 26, 2013, 10:17 PM (4 replies)
There are a few things that seem fairly clear about the Russian government. First, it loves to censor stuff, preferring whitelists to blacklists. Secondly, the Russian government isn't so big on this whole free speech thing, and it's even less enthused about anonymous speech. Also, we know that the Russian government likes to limit what it calls "obscenities," which not only feature your common curse words and YouTube style internet comments, but also anyone who is gay and likes being gay enough to tell someone else that being gay ain't so bad. And, finally, I now know the Russian government sucks at irony.
I say that because a language art website in Russia that published a bunch of satirical material on how gay people give the Kremlin the censorious heebie-jeebies has been itself censored.
In August, Russian-language art website published two satirical ebooks spoofing Russia's new anti-gay propaganda" laws, Homosexuality for Kids and Lesbianism for Kids. Now, they along with their entire blogging platform, is apparently banned in Russia. The two gay "guidebooks" are full of explicit images and tongue-in-cheek pronouncements like "Sometimes, when you look at another boy, you suddenly feel happy and strange." But as Animal New York points out, "one look through them and you know they're not gay textbooks for children. If you don't, you are silly or tyrannical Kremlin minion."
Luckily for Looo.ch, being banned by one of America's geopolitical adversaries is a great way to get blogs to write about you here in the U.S.. So what is looo.ch? It's the online home of New York-based Ukranian artists Anatoli Ulyanov and Natasha Masharova. The site is a raw, intriguing collection of projects, many of which seem to be direct provocations of Russia's overzealous web censors, recently empowered by the blacklist law that allows sites to be blocked if they are deemed to contain "information dangerous for children."
Posted by marble falls | Thu Sep 26, 2013, 09:52 PM (3 replies)
Deaf Boy Tasered for being Deaf
For the past year, I have been writing about a persistent pattern of police violence against people with disabilities. I wrote about it in The Nation and have been particularly focused on the Ethan Saylor case.
But the stories proliferate, with a new one almost every week. I've argued that you can read both the Times Square police shooting and the Ferrell case through the lens of police not knowing/caring how to respond to people acting "differently." The racial reading is of course front and center for that second case, of course, but seen through the lens of trying to explain how Ferrell is acting, temporarily disability following an accident makes sense.
Alas, the stories proliferate, many of them following the general pattern that I call the cult of compliance, a pattern of behavior in which police respond to non-compliance with violence. I argue that the pattern extends beyond disability, but that cases of disability are particularly acute.
Digby, who is one of the leaders on this topic, brought this story to my attention as the latest example of the horrific consequences of the cult of compliance.
A deaf boy was escaping abuse and ran away from a school. The police found him, approached, then tasered him when he didn't respond. Here's the key paragraph -
Police arrived at the construction site after dark. Knowing the boy was deaf, they allegedly made no effort to warn or communicate with him, but Tasered him from behind. As A.M. writhed on the ground from the “burns, paralysis and pain” caused by the Taser barbs, the two police officers rushed him and placed him in handcuffs.
There's a lawsuit, some money will change hands, and in no way will the cult of compliance be threatened.
It's worth thinking through this scene from the perspective of the police officer. It's dark. He knows the boy is deaf so can't be verbally controlled. At that point he just decides to solve the problem with a quick jolt of 40,000 volts. Does he talk about it with his partner first? I suppose they are worried he'll run away again (a reasonable guess given the awful situation).
We need to assert our right NOT to be tasered just because the police want us to comply. It's crazy that we have to even argue for this. But we do. To protect the deaf. Other people with disabilities. And every one of us.
Posted by marble falls | Mon Sep 23, 2013, 08:48 PM (16 replies)
Source: All Voices
Lavrov accuses US of blackmailing Russia to approve military force in Syria
Moscow : Russia | Sep 22, 2013 at 8:14 AM PDT
By JOHNTHOMAS DIDYMUS
Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov
John Kerry meets with Russian counterpart Sergey Lavrov to discuss Syrian chemical weapons plan
Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov is accusing the US of threatening to withdraw support for Syria's entry into the Organization for Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) if Russia does not agree to a UN resolution under "Chapter 7" that would allow military intervention in Syria.
According to Russia Today, Lavrov said in an interview, “Our American partners are starting to blackmail us: 'If Russia does not support a resolution under Chapter 7, then we will withdraw our support for Syria’s entry into the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW).' This is a complete departure from what I agreed with Secretary of State John Kerry."
Speaking in an interview Sunday, Lavrov said he was surprised that the US was now pressuring Russia to agree to a resolution that will allow military intervention in Syria. He described the Western approach to the Syrian crisis as "negligent."
He alleged that the primary interest of the US was regime change in Syria and not peaceful resolution of the conflict. He said, "Our partners are blinded by an ideological mission for regime change. They cannot admit they have made another mistake.”
JOHNTHOMAS DIDYMUS is based in Lagos, Lagos, Nigeria, and is an Anchor for Allvoices.
Read more: http://www.allvoices.com/contributed-news/15599287-lavrov-accuses-us-of-blackmailing-russia-to-pass-resolution-approving-military-force-in-syria
Posted by marble falls | Sun Sep 22, 2013, 11:20 PM (13 replies)
White Supremacists Use Black-on-White Crime as Propaganda Tool
http://www.adl.org/combating-hate/domes ... j-iIRDiWco
Long a source of irritation for white supremacists, angry claims of an epidemic of black-on-white crime (often simply referred to as "black crime") have drifted closer to the mainstream since the controversial shooting in Florida of Trayvon Martin, a young African-American male, by George Zimmerman (who has been described in the media as a white Hispanic). Following the assertions, extremists have repeated their claims that a large number of white victims are being ignored. And now even some mainstream commentators have taken up the issue and have used rhetoric similar to that used by the white supremacists to attack the media for allegedly discounting white victims of crime.
White supremacists calls for action against "black crime"
Even as they deny "whiteness" to George Zimmerman, white supremacists have been busy exploiting the controversy caused by Zimmerman's alleged act of self-defense against an African-American. White supremacists have renewed their calls for actions against so-called "black crime," which they equate with hate crimes. Hate crimes, however, have a very specific meaning: they are criminal offenses against a person or property motivated in whole or in part by an offender's bias against a race, religion, disability, ethnic origin or sexual orientation. White supremacists believe that any crime committed by an African-American against a white person is motivated by race.
On Stormfront, a popular white supremacist Internet forum, one poster recently asked people to join in a planned rally against black crime in Knoxville, Tennessee, scheduled for June 2012. The purpose of the rally would be to protest against new trials for black assailants who allegedly tortured and murdered a young white couple in that city in 2007. At that time, the incident mobilized the white supremacist community, which held rallies and distributed flyers that accused the media of ignoring what they considered to be a heinous hate crime. Police in Knoxville who investigated the crime said that the victims had not been targeted because of their race.
In May 2012, the neo-Nazi National Socialist Movement (NSM) announced that it would investigate a number of alleged incidents around the country in which whites were reportedly the victims of crimes committed by black youths or other minorities. In particular, the NSM mentioned an alleged attack against two white reporters by black youths in Norfolk, Virginia, and assaults against white men in Mobile, Alabama, and Baltimore, Maryland. The NSM has called for hate crime charges to be filed in these cases and wrote on its Web site that "if the roles had been reversed and it was a White mob that had attacked a Black citizen, it would have been labeled a 'lynching' by the major media…We have discovered a disturbing pattern of the systematic cover up and refusal of prosecutors to prosecute offenders under these statutes when the perpetrators are Black and the victims are White."
That same month, the Traditionalist American Knights of the Ku Klux Klan posted "a warning for white Americans" on their message board that claimed that there has been a significant rise recently in violent black-on-white crime across the country and that "this new racially motivated pandemic is mostly ignored by the liberal news media." The group asserted that it will organize a national distribution of fliers across the county "warning White Americans of the dangers to them and their families when approached by large groups of blacks." They added: "The Liberal Government jew media refuse to report fairly on these hate crimes so it our duty war our fellow Kinsmen of the violence being perpetrated against our Great Race."
On May 11, 2012, the white supremacist Council of Conservative Citizens (CofCC) posted an article on its Web site that claimed that a New Jersey newspaper had "censored" the race of the alleged assailants in what it called "savage mob attacks" on five white concertgoers in New Jersey. The CofCC dismissed both the newspaper and police accounts portraying the incident as an "isolated event." According to the CofCC, "almost as alarming as the epidemic violent crime being perpetrated against white people is the blatant media censorship and black-out of the racial element of the incidents."
Mainstream commentators take up the issue of white victims
Though more numerous now, such claims by white supremacists are not new. Recently, however, some mainstream commentators have begun to parrot some of the claims traditionally relegated to white supremacists. In particular, the commentators have attempted to make the case that there is significant racially-motivated violence in the United States in which whites are ignored victims.
A May 20 article on the blog Buzzfeed compiled a number of incidents in which mainstream commentators such as Bill O'Reilly, a Fox News show host, and Thomas Sowell, a National Review columnist, have asserted that the media is ignoring alleged hate crimes against whites as part of an active effort to hide reverse racism.
In early May 2012, O'Reilly focused several shows on the April 2012 incident in Norfolk, Virginia, in which two white reporters with the Virginia –Pilot newspaper were allegedly attacked by a group of black youths. According to O'Reilly, both the local media and police ignored the racial overtones of the assault and labeled the incident as a simple assault. On one show, O"Reilly claimed that " did not want to get in the middle of the racial aspect." Dave Parker, a reporter on O'Reilly's show who commented on the case on air, asserted that "if these races were reversed," it would be "a huge national story." On his show, O'Reilly said that the country was afraid of African-Americans. Though O'Reilly acknowledged that African-Americans have been mistreated in this country, he still asserted that the story was not front page news due to the race issue.
Sowell, who is African-American, went further in a May 15 column, calling the media's alleged inattention to black-on-white crime "a censored race war." Sowell also referred to the incident in Norfolk as well as "unprovoked violence by young black gangs against white people chosen at random on beaches, in shopping malls, or in other public places…" He added that, "if there is anything worse than a one-sided race war, it is a two-sided race war, especially when one of the races outnumbers the other several times over."
Bryan Fischer of the American Family Association has also addressed the alleged issue of black on white crime, blaming President Obama and Attorney General Eric Holder for ignoring alleged white victims of crime. On a radio show on May 24, 2012, Fischer asserted, "it's impossible, in their worldview, for a white to be a victim, they can only be perpetrators and blacks can never be perpetrators, they can only be victims. So unless the template for the crime is a white person committing a crime against a black person, they're just completely uninterested. They are not interested in justice, they are interested in racism and pressing their view of race."
The conspiracy-oriented right-wing newspaper, World Net Daily, published an article on May 3 titled, "Wave of Black Mobs Brutalizing Whites." In the article, author Chelsea Schilling asserted that, "in a wave of black-on-white crime since the February Trayvon Martin slaying, reports are emerging of dozens of brutal assaults by black mobs and assailants against white victims—and some attackers are citing the revenge for the Martin slaying as a reason for their aggression." Amazingly, in discussing one incident, Schilling's article reproduced a photo from the white supremacist Newsnet 14 Web site and used as a source prominent South Carolina white supremacist Kyle Rogers, a leader with the CofCC, describing him as a "reporter." The alleged victim, moreover, had reported his version of the incident to a number of white supremacist Web sites.
In this instance, at least, some of the information in an allegedly mainstream article had come directly from white supremacist sources.
Posted by marble falls | Sun Sep 22, 2013, 10:12 PM (10 replies)
(CNN) -- The family of a Florida man has released video of his death, hoping to get criminal charges filed against the police officer who ran him over.
On May 8, Marlon Brown was being chased by DeLand police because they allegedly saw that he was not wearing a seatbelt. At a dead-end road, Brown stopped his car and started running.
One of the police cars hit and ran him over, its dashcam video recording the entire incident.
Last week, a grand jury decided not to indict officer James Harris on a criminal charge of vehicular manslaughter. That's when the family decided to go public, and release the video.
The dashcam video shows Harris' police car following two other police cars as they drive down a residential street into a grass lot. The two other vehicles stop but the one with the camera continues to chase after Brown.
As the police car approaches, Brown stumbles and falls. While on the ground, Brown turns and faces the chasing vehicle and within seconds, his face disappears under the hood of Harris' police car. A thud is heard and the car stops.
"I think he's underneath the (expletive) car," a voice off camera can be heard saying.
The city of DeLand has already paid the family $550,000 in a settlement but the city did not admit any wrongdoing, according to Krystal Brown. The family decided to go public with their story and the video in hopes of triggering public outrage that would result in pressure for officials to file criminal charges for Brown's death.
"We're just asking for justice, nothing extra," Krystal Brown said, "nothing no one else would want for their family member. "
State Attorney for Florida's 7th judicial district R.J. Larizza decided to present the evidence to the grand jury instead of filing charges, which he could have done if he felt a crime had been committed.
The video alone prompted DeLand Police Chief William Ridgway to fire Harris.
"The actions taken by Officer Harris that night are not consistent with our department's training, directives, or accepted practices or techniques," Ridgway told CNN, in a prepared statement.
DeLand police are conducting an internal review of the incident. This week, law enforcement officials have been going over more than 2,000 documents to determine whether appropriate tactics were used, whether police policies were followed and if those policies reflect the best way to deal with similar situations.
Brown's family believes the video speaks for itself.
The cops were only trying to deliver a gallon of milk. The police enjoy the chase to the point it has not a thing to do with law and order.
Posted by marble falls | Sun Sep 22, 2013, 07:48 PM (13 replies)
Texas Appeals Court Overturns Tom DeLay's Money Laundering Conviction
AP Photo / Pat Sullivan
Igor Bobic – September 19, 2013, 10:47 AM EDT
A Texas Court of Appeals overturned former House Majority Leader Tom DeLay's (R-TX) conviction of money laundering on Thursday, finding the trial court's decision "legally insufficient to sustain DeLay’s convictions," KHOU reported.
A court convicted and sentenced DeLay to three years in prison in 2010 for allegedly scheming to improperly influence Texas elections by helping to illegally steer corporate money to candidates in 2002. DeLay has since been waging a lenghty appeals process, and was acquitted Thursday.
Read the appeals court opinion here.
Read more: http://talkingpointsmemo.com/livewire/texas-appeals-court-overturns-tom-delay-s-money-laundering-conviction
I hope he is retried and jailed.
Posted by marble falls | Thu Sep 19, 2013, 11:24 AM (11 replies)
Source: Al Jazeera
Russia to disclose new evidence from Assad about chemical attacks
by Michael Pizzi
September 18, 2013 12:15PM ET
Foreign minister says Russia will present UN with evidence implicating rebels in deadly gas attacks
Russia's Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov (R) speaks with his French counterpart Laurent Fabius during their meeting in Moscow, on Sept. 17, 2013.2013 AFP
Russia has received material evidence from Syria claiming to show that a chemical weapons attack last month was perpetrated by rebels rather than regime forces, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said Wednesday.
Lavrov told Russian news agencies that his government will present the evidence to the U.N. Security Council, but he did not comment on the nature of the evidence nor did he specify when it would be disclosed.
The introduction of new evidence may complicate discussions on a Security Council resolution that would require Syria to immediately disclose the whereabouts of its chemical weapons stores. Under the plan, drafted jointly by the U.S. and Russia, the weapons would then be destroyed, with an aim to complete the operation by 2014.
Chemical weapons experts say that cataloging, relocating and destroying chemical weapons will be exceptionally difficult while Syria is in a full-fledged civil war, but most agree that a successful operation is possible.
Al Jazeera and wire services
Read more: http://america.aljazeera.com/articles/2013/9/18/russia-to-disclosenewevidencefromassadaboutchemicalattacks.html
Posted by marble falls | Wed Sep 18, 2013, 05:54 PM (4 replies)