Monday, November 30, 2015

Belichick Furious Over Fumbled Punt

It cost them the game, and I guess you don't play Gronk next week. 

I'll be doing some punting of my own now.

"Daily fantasy sports companies offer differing messages to fans, courts" by Dan Adams Globe Correspondent  November 30, 2015

Listening to the relentless television commercials from daily fantasy sports companies, one could assume that any passionate sports fan can win huge sums of money in their contests.

“This is the feeling of turning a game you love into a lifetime of cash,” the voiceover in a widely-broadcast DraftKings Inc. spot intones. “Just pick your sport, pick your players, and pick up your cash!”

But last week, DraftKings and rival FanDuel Inc. were forced to tell a very different story in a New York courtroom. With Attorney General Eric Schneiderman arguing their contests are illegal under a state law that defines games of chance as gambling, the companies were put in the awkward position of having to say that their contests actually demand considerable skill to win.

In fact, their attorneys argued, just a handful of players win nearly all the prizes, and those players spend up to 90 hours a week studying athletes and crunching numbers to do it.

“If most people lose money and the same people continue to win repeatedly, that is absolute proof that this is a game of skill and not of chance,” said David Boies, a high-profile attorney hired by DraftKings to lead its fight in New York.

To prove the point, lawyers for both companies presented detailed statistical analyses to the New York judge who will soon decide whether to suspend the contests while the fight plays out in court. The numbers generally echo an oft-cited McKinsey & Co. study of daily fantasy baseball, which found a mere 1.3 percent of fantasy players won about 91 percent of the prize money, while 85 percent of players lost money.

The daily fantasy companies also explained in court the lengths to which players go to win. Peter Jennings, a former stock broker from Colorado who has won millions playing daily fantasy sports on the site and appears in a DraftKings ad, testified that he spends 70 to 90 hours a week preparing for and playing daily fantasy contests — and uses tactics that hardly sound like the habits of the casual sports fans depicted in the commercials.

“I believe my success is the result of the immense amounts of research and preparation and the sophisticated analysis I have developed over years of playing,” Jennings wrote in an affidavit filed in the New York case. “I create my own custom player projections and models based on the information and historic performance data I collect. These models employ advanced statistics to predict player outcomes. I also use game theory to maximize my return on investment.”

Schneiderman contends that the advertisements gloss over how much work players such as Jennings must put in to win consistently. In his lawsuit against DraftKings, for example, he accused it of false advertising, saying its commercials imply “that a casual player is likely to win a jackpot.”

Despite the unlikelihood of a casual player winning big, the attorney general maintains that the contests are illegal games of chance, since the outcome still rests on events that are subject to luck. For instance, a skilled daily fantasy player may lose to another skilled player simply because an athlete on her roster was injured or because a game was rained out. The judge hearing the case must decide whether such strokes of bad luck play enough of a role in daily fantasy contests to qualify them as gambling.

Marketing consultant David Hagenbuch has questioned whether the fantasy sports ads violate the Federal Trade Commission’s “truth-in-advertising” standards.

What a joke.

“For them to say in court that very few people win the games, but then in the ads to really imply that there are a lot of winners — and not just a lot of winners, but big winners — is very misleading and hypocritical,” Hagenbuch, who advocates for ethical ads, said in an interview.

Too bad they weren't trying to sell a war. Then government wouldn't have said a word.

Hagenbuch noted that guidance from the FTC in 2009 did away with the old “results not typical” disclaimer. Ads featuring testimonials from customers who did not have a typical experience now must “clearly disclose the results that consumers can generally expect.”

DraftKings did not respond to a request for comment Friday. However, in court filings, the company has said its ads are not misleading and that anyone who plays can win.

“Even advertisements inviting people to become contestants on popular game shows like ‘Who Wants to Be a Millionaire’ would constitute deceptive advertising under [Schneiderman’s] logic,” the company wrote.

Some recent DraftKings ads include small-type text that says the average user’s winnings are $1,263 — a figure that doesn’t reflect how much users paid in entry fees.

DraftKings chief executive Jason Robins has acknowledged that his company’s massive ad blitz — it spent about $154.5 million on commercials so far this year, according to — attracted unwanted attention in addition to new customers. He said the tone of some spots was a mistake.

“That is something we’re paying a little more attention to with regards to some of the media uproar,” Robins said at a business conference in October.

He said the company was readying new ads “that really capture the essence of what the experience for a fantasy fan is like . . . versus just talking about the prizing aspect.”

New commercials, awesome! 


This blog has now rolled dead for the month of November, and as fate would have it I am entering my bye week.

NDU: Patriots cut Chris Harper after misplayed punt 

Cyber Monday Myth

It comes from the highest authority, the New York Times:

"Black Friday is no longer a bellwether for retail" by Hiroko Tabuchi New York Times  November 30, 2015

NEW YORK — If the lines at Target or Macy’s this Black Friday seemed shorter than in years past, shoppers have the Internet to thank.

More people shopped online over the Thanksgiving weekend than in brick-and-mortar stores, according to a closely watched survey released by retail’s biggest trade group, the National Retail Federation. (Spending at physical stores still dwarfs online spending, however.)

Related: Back in the Black Friday

The trade group also stuck by its forecast on Sunday that retail sales this holiday season will rise 3.7 percent this year, below last year’s growth of 4.1 percent. For the first time in more than a decade, the group did not release estimates of total spending for the holiday weekend.

Then $omething is wrong.

The federation’s chief executive, Matthew Shay, said big shifts in consumer behavior made Black Friday weekend sales less of a bellwether for holiday spending, or for the state of the American consumer.

Shoppers are taking advantage of a deluge of sales and promotions to shop when they want, and how they want, he said.

Retailers, in turn, are scrambling to offer sales earlier each year, both in stores and online.

“Shopping has changed and the consumer has changed and retailers have changed,” Shay said. “Retailers are heavily promoting starting the day after Halloween.”

Got any change?

Meanwhile, there is “a broad and deep expectation” among shoppers that sales and promotions will continue far beyond Black Friday, and less of an imperative to spend over the weekend, Shay said.

The importance of Black Friday has long been more myth than fact.

(That is where blog editor stopped. So all these years the ma$$ media and propaganda pre$$ have been pimping myths more than facts, huh?)

Black Friday is generally not the year’s biggest shopping day. MasterCard estimated that shoppers bought more on Dec. 23 last year, presumably in a late scramble for Christmas gifts.

The amount of $h** they are shoveling makes the whole place look like a living room after Chri$tma$ gifts have been opened. 

Last year it was a late scramble, blah-blah-blah-blah-blah-blah!

And Black Friday’s importance has waned even further in recent years, as retailers offered holiday sales earlier and longer.

After a while you get $ick of the rationali$ations for an economic $y$tem that sends wealth upward and that's all. Thank God NYT pre$$titutes are getting paid for this codswallop.

Some industry analysts have questioned whether the season itself is losing significance as retailers increasingly offer sales all year round.

It looks like it Chri$tma$ all year 'round, huh?

And data shows that consumers are spending less on clothing and shoes and more on traveling, eating out, and on their cars and homes.

Which con$umers would they be, huh?

Still, holiday promotions — much of it on Black Friday — remain critically important for some products, like new gadgets and technology, but a more accurate measure of holiday spending will not be available until the Department of Commerce releases retail spending figures next month for November, and for December in January....

Yeah, "still(!!!!)," and the government will rework and rewarm lies to make us all feel better, blah, blah, blah.


Related: Spending Was At An All Time Low For Black Friday And Corporations Lost Billions

Look, you can believe who you want. 

Chicago Protests Killing Christmas

Speaking of protests in the Globe:

Protesters demand end to upcoming Blue Hills deer hunts

Not making my day.

Truckers to converge on Moscow to protest tax

And by the side of the road in AmeriKa?

"Somewhere in America, a tractor-trailer loaded with hidden surveillance equipment is parked at a truck stop or warehouse while authorities wait for thieves to steal it. Such ‘‘sting trailers’’ have been successful in busting up crime rings and recovering other pilfered merchandise. ‘‘It’s like fishing,’’ said D.Z. Patterson, an investigator for Travelers insurance. ‘‘You’ve got your worm in the water, but there are hundreds of other worms out there. They have to pick yours.’’ Cargo theft has become a huge problem that the FBI says causes $15 billion to $30 billion in losses each year in the United States. The problem worsens during the holiday season, when cargo Grinches target inventories of retailers. Law enforcement and the insurance industry are fighting back by tempting thieves with ‘‘sting trailers’’ harboring cameras and GPS tracking devices."

Right, huge problem I'm sure, and now I will be looking at parked trailers a lot differently. 

It's V for Vendetta, isn't it, with the roving surveillance trucks? Thing is, U.S. authorities have had these operations going on for years before this lame piece of propaganda rolled up and parked.

What is insulting is authority expects us to believe this cock-and-bull cargo thieves crap in this age of near total surveillance -- with the answer being, more surveillance! It's simply an excuse for more spying, folks.

As for costing the economy:

"Long delays plague federal disability system; Many applicants slip into poverty before decisions are made" by Kelli Kennedy Associated Press  November 28, 2015

MIAMI — Diabetes, arthritis, and open-heart surgery have kept Sherice Bennett from working, but she can’t afford her medicine and became homeless while waiting for more than two years for a chance to convince a judge that she qualifies for federal disability benefits.

Maria Ruiz also is waiting to appeal her denial; meanwhile, she has been in and out of psychiatric wards since being diagnosed as bipolar and hasn’t been able to buy her medicines since August.

Still others die waiting.

Another VA, but thankfully the war machine has been funded.

One man had already been dead for two months this summer before his request for a hearing reached the desk of Miami Judge Thomas Snook. He ultimately approved the claim, and the man’s spouse will collect his benefits.

Overburdened administrative judges are working through huge caseloads of these appeals across America, but Miami has the country’s longest average wait for a hearing, at 22 months.

Of course, the $cheming looters in the banking industry get a government check cut within a week after the people rejected it.

And while they wait, many slip into poverty, burdening their families and dragging down the economy.

Wow. Blaming the old and ill for the economic woes as the top whatever percent swims in cash.

Besides, I have been told we have been in recovery for six years, and a good recovery compared to the rest of the world at that. WTF?

Experts blame aging baby boomers for the backlog, which began after the Social Security Administration got $1 billion less in funding than it sought for more staff. 

Related: Lockheed Looted Social Security 

Who$e to blame again?

The roughly $126 billion Social Security disability program is funded through payroll taxes and keeps many of America’s most vulnerable people off the streets by sending an average of $1,165 in a monthly check to about 9 million permanently unemployed who qualified through prior work history.

More than 8 million others qualify because they are low-income and receive an average $540 a month — both groups require medical proof that they can’t work.

Not exactly bank bailout stuff, is it?

A million hearings are pending, and it makes sense for them to keep pushing: Just under half of applicants eventually get the benefits, including millions who convince an administrative law judge on appeal that their disability makes a job impossible.

The Social Security Administration says two new judgeships are planned for Miami to lighten this load, but it’s unclear if any candidates want to work there.

‘‘The system doesn’t work,’’ said Bennett, 58, whose son quit college to help her pay rent after she was evicted. ‘‘No one should have to wait two years for a hearing. We have criminals that wait less time than that. These are people that are sick and have paid into the system.’’

It's not meant to work as millions per day are spent to advance the war agenda and empire overseas. 

It's time you started facing facts, America. This government doesn't give a shit about you.

Delays in other cities are nearly as bad: Brooklyn, N.Y.; Spokane, Wash.; and Fort Myers, Fla.; and Milwaukee have 20-month waits. Atlanta; Charlotte, N.C.; Cincinnati; Baltimore; and Chattanooga, Tenn., are close behind with 19 months. The shortest wait time is eight months in Fort Smith, Ark.

That somehow justifies it all, right? Just as bad as them! Call it normal, the government neglect and insult. At least Israel is never hurting for anything. 

The national average is about one year and four months, according to the Social Security Administration, and petitioners typically wait another four to five months for a decision after the hearing.

Three years ago, the agency tried to resolve these appeals more quickly by limiting caseloads, but then judges felt pressure to approve more cases, and since approvals take far less time and paperwork than denials, the program’s overall cost soared.

Ah, that is what brought it to the attention of the fa$ci$ts in government.

In a scathing review last year, the House Oversight and Government Reform committee alleged that hundreds of judges were rubber-stamping approvals and costing taxpayers unnecessary billions. Four judges alone cost taxpayers $11 billion since 2005, according to the committee’s investigation.

While not approving of fraud, it's all a matter of proportionality. 

Fort Myers Judge Larry Butler said judges who took the time to comb over sometimes hundreds of pages of medical documents to reach a decision were put on the radar for discipline for not approving cases fast enough.

‘‘The people who are not generating a high volume of cases were the judges who were doing their jobs . . . and those judges tend to have a lower payment rate,’’ Butler said.

Seattle-based attorney John Chihak, whose firm handles 600 cases a year, says these judges ‘‘are in fact every bit subject to the capricious whims of the process as the subjects who have to wait two years to get a hearing.’’

The Obama administration said there’s no indication judges are rubber-stamping cases, but some of the data was not made public and could not be verified....

Obama said so.... it must be true!


At least this state is better:

"Lawsuit alleges discrimination against deaf inmates" by Milton J. Valencia Globe Staff  November 28, 2015


A 45-year-old woman being held at the state prison in Framingham has degenerative hearing loss and needs two hearing aids. But when she arrived to begin her sentence eight years ago with two fully functioning devices, she was forced to turn them in because they were not issued by a licensed health contractor.

According to a civil lawsuit filed on her behalf last week, prison officials gave her one state-approved device, but it broke shortly thereafter.

Other plaintiffs in a class-action suit against the state Department of Correction include a legally deaf man who was twice left behind in his unit at the Massachusetts Treatment Center during a fire alarm because he could not hear it, and hearing-impaired inmates who have been disciplined for not obeying prison announcements they could not hear.

The lawsuit was filed in US District Court in Worcester last week by prisoners’ rights advocates who allege the state Department of Correction discriminates against deaf and blind prisoners.

“Deaf and hard of hearing prisoners in the [Department of Correction] are essentially living in a prison within a prison,” said Elizabeth Matos, a staff attorney with Prisoners Legal Services, a corrections reform group in Massachusetts.

The lawsuit also names Massachusetts Partnership for Correctional Health Care, the department’s medical contractor. Matos said staff from both agencies “have repeatedly ignored the requests of deaf and hard of hearing individuals for even the most basic accommodations necessary to protect themselves within an often dangerous environment and to access the same programs and services offered to hearing prisoners.”

A spokesman said the state Department of Correction does not comment on pending litigation and would not comment on the lawsuit. A representative from Massachusetts Partnership for Correctional Health Care deferred to the state.

The 49-page lawsuit alleges that the state follows policies and procedures that systemically deprive deaf and blind prisoners of services and programs that other inmates would be entitled to, such as access to medical care, mental health counselors, and educational and religious programs. The department, the lawsuit alleges, also deprives inmates of the ability to communicate and interact with loved ones.

For instance, the department uses outdated telecommunication devices for deaf and blind prisoners who try to call loved ones, even when newer technology, such as video devices, is available, easier to use, and cheaper for inmates and their families. And, the suit alleges, the outdated telecommunication devices are often not even available.

The department, according to the complaint, also fails to provide prisoners with functioning hearing aids or sign language interpreters, restricting their ability to take part in educational, vocational, or rehabilitation programs. Many of the inmates cannot communicate with medical providers, the suit alleges. According to the complaint, one inmate had a seizure and could not communicate with a medical provider. The inmate was then prescribed medication, but staff “did not tell him what it was or what it was meant to treat.”

In addition, the suit says, when announcements are made, some inmates have difficulty hearing them but are still disciplined if they do not comply. And hearing aids provided by the prisons are often not functional, the suit contends. The female prisoner at Framingham had one with a hole in it.

“She was forced to make do by covering the hole with scotch tape to make her aid minimally functional,” the lawsuit states.

The lawsuit alleges that the department’s policies not only discriminate against certain inmates but put them in danger.

“When [plaintiffs’] hearing devices are not functioning properly, their ability to communicate and understand their environment is seriously compromised,” the lawsuit states. “They are forced to observe the clock and other prisoners closely, taking their cues from them to ensure they are in the right place at the right time. This increases the danger that they face of exploitation and verbal and physical abuse from other prisoners.”

The lawsuit alleges that the agencies not only failed to provide basic, equal services but that they failed to act on requests over the last several years to address inmates’ concerns, as other states have.

Deborah Golden, an attorney with the Washington Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights and Urban Affairs, part of the team of prisoners’ right advocates, said similar calls for reform were heard in states such as Virginia, Maryland, and Kentucky, but not in Massachusetts.

“We were disappointed to discover that Massachusetts is so backward,” Golden said. “It should not take a lawsuit to ensure that men and women in Massachusetts are guaranteed their rights to health, safety, and effective communication.” 

Imagine how I felt when I realized the mythical image of Massachusetts rarely matches the reality of the $tate.  

The Boston law firm of WilmerHale is also part of the legal team.


Must have been the volume at the theater that made them deaf:

"Despite mighty competition, Katniss and her crew dominated the box office once again. ‘‘The Hunger Games: Mockingjay — Part 2’’ held on to its first-place spot in its second weekend in theaters, earning $51.6 million to top ‘‘The Good Dinosaur’’ and ‘‘Creed,’’ which both debuted Wednesday, according to Rentrak estimates on Sunday. Disney and Pixar’s animated dinosaur movie took second place, bringing in $39.2 million Friday through Sunday, while ‘‘Creed,’’ a new entry in the Rocky Balboa canon, came in third with $30.1 million. The James Bond film ‘‘Spectre’’ earned $12.8 million and ‘‘The Peanuts Movie’’ took in $9.7 million."

Looks like the Spotlight dimmed. What a joke.


"The industry, facing weak sales and looking for sure-fire winners, is catering to the appetites of consumers, critics, and other cultural gatekeepers."

I won't miss the myth makers.

Also see: Thousands In Europe Protest Against Bombing Syria

What do you mean the Globe missed those?

Sunday Globe Special: Riding Through Congre$$

Not going to take long....

"$1.1 trillion federal budget laden with riders; Dec. 11 is key date for decisions on policy issues" by Andrew Taylor Associated Press  November 28, 2015

WASHINGTON — Farm-state lawmakers are trying to thwart new clean water rules.

Banks are looking to ease oversight requirements.

Brokers are working to stall a new rule raising standards for investment advice on retirement accounts.

Truckers want longer tandem trucks permitted in every state.

These are just some of the policy battles that must be hashed out by Dec. 11 as Congress races to close out a $1.1 trillion spending bill and avoid a holiday season government shutdown.

President Obama and his Democratic allies promise to fight off what they consider the most glaring examples of GOP overreach. Republicans insist they won’t walk away empty-handed.

At issue are dozens of policy provisions that have hitched a ride onto the 12 spending bills. When a bill has trouble advancing on its own, lawmakers often try to add it to must-do appropriations legislation.

For powerful interest groups such as banks, broadcasters, and agribusiness, these riders are often the last chance to push items on their agenda through Congress. They also are a way for lawmakers to weigh in on pet issues such as gun rights, sales of antique ivory, management of wolf populations, and rest requirements for long-haul truckers.

Republicans have laced the spending bills with add-ons that take on Obama’s health law, new environmental regulations, and the 2010 Dodd-Frank law tightening oversight of the financial services industry. If history is any guide, Obama and Democrats — whose votes will be needed to pass the catch-all spending bill — will ward off most of them.

But lots of lower-tier issues are in play.

Anti-Castro forces in the House appear unlikely to reverse Obama’s moves to loosen rules about traveling to Cuba. But supporters of medical marijuana are hopeful they can win new guarantees against harassment by federal authorities.

Broadcasters have bipartisan support for letting them retain advertising sales agreements with other stations in the same market despite a new federal rule that curbs the practice. The Federal Communications Commission says big media companies are exploiting the agreements in order to evade restrictions against owning multiple stations in the same market.

Some conservatives are still pressing to use the spending legislation as a way to take away Planned Parenthood’s federal money and increase scrutiny of Syrian and Iraqi refugees seeking to settle in the United States. Those are nonstarters with Obama and Democrats.


Presidents invariably do well in negotiations on riders, and veto threats can force the removal of the most contentious policy add-ons. That has kept off previous omnibus bills such GOP initiatives as blocking implementation of the health overhaul, stalling antipollution measures, and watering down the financial industry oversight law off previous omnibus bills.

Democrats and the White House are talking tough on riders, and the president is issuing veto threats as freely as ever. This time, it means Republican attempts probably won’t make the cut on blocking rules on power plant emissions, delaying ozone standards, and weakening clean water standards involving mountaintop removal coal-mining operations.

Any rider with bipartisan support has a greater chance of making it. So broadcasters, supported by top Democrats such as Senator Charles Schumer of New York, have an advantage in getting exemptions for local television station sales agreements.

The financial services industry can claim some Democratic support for exemptions to some new regulatory burdens. Watchdogs such as Massachusetts Senator Elizabeth Warren warn against efforts to ‘‘weaken, delay or dilute the rules that protect consumers and hold big banks accountable.’’ Warren was on the losing end last year over easing restrictions on banks that wanted to trade in risky financial items known as derivatives.

Once a rider is added the first time, the battle usually is over. A ban on enforcing efficiency standards for incandescent light bulbs is a repeat add-on; restrictions on listing the sage grouse, a bird species, under the Endangered Species Act are likely again.

Both cases would represent GOP victories that sound bigger than they really are. Industry has gone along with the light bulb standards anyway and the Interior Department has declined to take new steps on its own to protect the sage grouse.

Other repeat provisions would block the Environmental Protection Agency from regulating the lead content of ammunition; ban federal dollars for needle exchange programs for addicts threatened by HIV; renew several long-standing provisions on abortion; and block the Justice Department from interfering with medical marijuana dispensaries.


Now over to the Senate:

"Republicans face new hurdle in effort to keep Senate reins" by Erica Werner Associated Press   November 24, 2015

WASHINGTON — Republicans’ plans to defend their Senate majority in 2016 just got a bit more complicated.

Senator David Vitter’s loss in Louisiana’s governor’s race over the weekend, and his decision to leave the Senate next year rather than seek reelection, creates an open seat that Republicans will have to defend.

It’s a deep-red Southern state and the GOP will be heavily favored, but Democrats hope they might have a shot, especially with a newly elected Democratic governor, John Bel Edwards, as an unanticipated asset.

Related: Obama Has Destroyed the Democratic Party

So this is all nothing but POLITICAL FILLER, huh?

The Louisiana race is the latest wrinkle as Republicans face what’s already a tough Senate map next year. They are defending 24 seats, compared with 10 for Democrats, and seven of those GOP seats are in states President Obama won in 2012.

That is supposed to help them?

Democrats are sounding increasingly confident they will pick up the seats needed to win back the Senate control they lost just last year. They need to net four seats if they hang onto the White House, since the vice president casts tie-breaking votes in the Senate; or five seats if Republicans win the presidency.

It's two factions $erving the $ame intere$ts in a game of mu$ical chairs (where no one is left $tanding).

But Republicans insist they will keep Louisiana safely in their column and keep their majority, too. They point to strong incumbents in battleground states like Pennsylvania, New Hampshire, and Ohio, although Illinois and Wisconsin may be tougher for them to hold.

And although there’s talk of a primary challenge against GOP Senator Kelly Ayotte of New Hampshire, who will face a tough general election battle against Democratic Governor Maggie Hassan, Republicans boast of steering clear of disastrous primaries.

Difficult GOP primaries have plagued earlier election cycles, most notably 2010 and 2012, when Tea Party Republicans with controversial views on rape and even witchcraft emerged from primaries only to lose the general election.

‘‘None of our members have put their foot in their mouth,’’ said Ward Baker, executive director of the National Republican Senatorial Committee, but he noted that things could still go wrong.

Strategists of both parties make a few points about the Senate map.

In Louisiana, Democrats see an outside chance; Ayotte, in independent-minded New Hampshire, has upset some conservatives, though national Republicans play down the threat.

Threat! In our wonderful political system that encourages fullest debate (or so I have been led to believe)??

Indeed Republicans argue that Democrats are the ones with problematic primaries, as their chosen candidates contend with vigorous challenges from the left in states including Florida, Pennsylvania, Ohio, and Illinois.

With Hillary Clinton likely to emerge as the Democratic presidential nominee, it’s going to matter, a lot, whom the Republicans select as their presidential candidate. Republicans dread Donald Trump or Texas Senator Ted Cruz and sound most excited about Florida Senator Marco Rubio with his forward-looking message and prospect for generational change....

Their opinion as news narrative! Great!


RelatedA modest proposal for the Democrats

The election has already been decided?

So what are the Democrats up to anyway?

"Democrats shift focus to fighting ISIS during N.H. speeches" by James Pindell Globe Staff  November 28, 2015

MANCHESTER, N.H. — The shift in rhetoric from the candidates reflects the change on the campaign since terrorist attacks in Paris this month.

On the one hand we are told to eggshell our fears so the war agenda can be given a big shove, while on the other hand it's don't forget to do your shopping and stuff, no threat here.

Senator Bernie Sanders of Vermont, who has based his populist campaign on the idea that the nation’s growing income inequality gap is the moral and economic issue of our time, nonetheless devoted a third of his 30-minute speech to how to address the threat of terrorism by groups such as the Islamic State, also known as ISIS.

Yeah, amazing how the whole tone and focus of the campaign and its coverage changed because of what happened in Paris. Moved away from wealth inequality and the very $y$tem driving it to self-created demons from afar.

“As everybody knows, we live in a difficult and dangerous world, and there are people out there who want to do us harm,” Sanders said. “As president, I will defend this nation — but I will do it responsibly. We do not need a quote-unquote ‘tough foreign policy.’ We need a quote-unquote ‘smart foreign policy’ that achieves our goals.”

Sanders argued that as president he would ask Middle Eastern countries to take the lead with American support.

“The fight against ISIS is a struggle for the soul of Islam, and countering violent extremism and destroying ISIS must be done primarily by Muslim nations,” Sanders said.

What he does is adopt that divisive and tired old rational and narrative regarding the clash of civilizations crap Sam Huntington was shoveling way back in the 1990s, and what irony is it that a Jew is lecturing Muslims on their religion? Take a look Israel and the war being waged for the soul of Judaism first.

This stood in contrast to his rivals, former secretary of state Hillary Clinton and former Maryland governor Martin O’Malley, who both called for a more robust response.

“This is personal to me,” Clinton said, noting that she served as a senator from New York during the attacks on Sept. 11, 2001. She told the audience: “You are not just electing a president, you are picking a commander in chief.”

I can't believe she stooped so low as to cite that day, and wouldn't Benghazi have been a more personal matter for here (same date and all)?

For his part, O’Malley said the Islamic State required a broader, US-led coalition.

“This violent jihadist extremism known as ISIS must be confronted and destroyed,” O’Malley said. “This is a global problem that requires a global solution.”

We can see where he is going on this.

Despite increased attention to the unstable world situation, the bulk of the speeches Sunday at the Democratic Party’s Jefferson-Jackson dinner focused on domestic issues, such as middle class economic anxiety and abortion rights. All three also mentioned the recent mass shooting at a Planned Parenthood clinic in Colorado. 

They didn't change the name?

As for the shooting....

"Speaking on CNN’s “State of the Union,” Colorado Governor John Hickenlooper, a Democrat, noted that the rampage was one of an alarming number of mass shootings and cited recent attacks at a historic black church in Charleston, S.C., and a community college in Oregon. 


Oregon Shooting an Obvious Psyop

South Carolina Church Shooting Cover Story is a Set-Up 

Did you learn anything?

Colorado has been the site of two other notorious mass shootings, at Columbine High School in 1999 and at a movie theater in Aurora in 2012. 

There are still some questions regarding Columbine.

Also see: Aurora Anniversary 

At least he is safely in a cell now. 

What I would like to point out here is the citing of such searing events clues one in to the mind-manipulating psyop nature of the events, be they real or staged fictions.

Several other guests on Sunday talk shows called the shootings domestic terrorism, including Mike Huckabee, the former Arkansas governor who is a Republican presidential candidate; the mayor of Colorado Springs; and the head of Planned Parenthood of the Rocky Mountains. Many, including Hickenlooper, also suggested that it was time to begin discussing how to tone down rhetoric that “is inflaming people to the point where they can’t stand it, and they go out and they lose connection with reality in some way and commit these acts of unthinkable violence.” 

One could say the same regarding psychopathic mass-murdering, war-criminal liars and their ma$$ media mouthpieces, but I was waiting for the "domestic terrorism" to be raised. 

The war on terror coming home as we all said it would long ago.

Vicki Cowart, chief executive of Planned Parenthood of the Rocky Mountains, said rhetoric around the health care provider’s practices had created a hostile environment for its clinics. “We’ve experienced so much hateful language, hateful speech,” she said. “I can’t believe that this isn’t contributing to some folks, mentally unwell or not, thinking that it’s OK to target Planned Parenthood or to target abortion providers.” She said politicians had played a role in creating the tensions, as well as broadcasts that use antiabortion language and spread false accusations against Planned Parenthood. In recent months, Planned Parenthood has had to defend itself against conservative critics who have accused it of selling aborted fetuses...."

As if it never happened, and now the event is being used to stifle free speech!! 

Related: Gun Confiscation – Last Refuge of the Tyrant

Someone whose gun should be confiscated:

"Earlier reports found that Officer Tim Loehmann reasonably feared for his life and that the split-second decision to shoot Rice could be justified under the circumstances. Rice had been carrying a replica gun given to him by a friend. The case has become a focal point in the national movement protesting the deaths of black people at the hands of police."

Yeah, never you mind about Johnny Cracker (no protests for whitey). 

As for poor Tamir Rice, the car "pulled into the park after seeing [him] at a distance and slammed on the brakes when [he] did not run as they had expected. That caused the car to slide on the slick grass and stop within a few feet of the boy, who was shot within 2 seconds of the patrol car stopping near him."

Of course, we are always reminded of the danger that faces police.

Time to get back on the campaign trail:

With a little more than two months until the New Hampshire primary, surveys show a statistical tie between Clinton and Sanders in the Democratic contest. A Fox News poll of New Hampshire Democrats released last week showed Sanders leading Clinton 45 percent to 44 percent, within the margin of error. The poll showed O’Malley having 5 percent support.

None of the candidates directly challenged one another by name but made their targets well known nonetheless.

Sanders decried “establishment politics” and a “same-old, same-old” approach, in responding to Clinton’s endorsement of the state’s sitting Democratic senator, governor, and US representative.

Clinton, for her part, referred to policy ideas that were clearly part of Sanders’ approach and dismissed them as “not smart” or “promising things that will never happen.”

Earlier on Sunday, Clinton brought her Democratic presidential campaign to historic Faneuil Hall, where, alongside Mayor Martin J. Walsh of Boston, she unveiled a new national infrastructure platform aimed at improving roads and bridges.

RelatedClinton to unveil large economic spending proposal in Boston

Clinton announced the five-year $275 billion plan in front of heads of international trade unions and their members, nearly all wearing colored shirts denoting their particular union. In addition to $250 billion in direct investment from the federal government, an additional $25 billion would establish a national infrastructure bank, providing loans to cities and states for local projects, like to expand convention centers or improve airports.

The $ame tired, debt-en$laving $olutions that have failed lo these thirty years.

Clinton’s campaign said this money would come from unspecified “business tax reform.” More details on how the program would work are expected to be released Monday.

Clinton signaled that any changes to business taxes will not include an increase in personal income taxes. “I’m the only Democrat in this race who will pledge to raise your income, not your taxes,” she said.

Clinton’s 35-minute speech to a capacity crowd in Faneuil’s Great Hall was part policy proposal and part campaign rally. Hundreds lined up hours before the event for a seat.

I'm glad she wants to build roads because I gotta hit one quick.

At the Faneuil Hall event, Walsh introduced Clinton and formally endorsed her.

A former labor leader, Walsh told union members to “get your sledgehammers ready. We’ve got a glass ceiling to demolish” referring to Clinton’s attempt to become the first woman to be US president.

Next year Massachusetts is to hold its primary just three weeks after New Hampshire’s first-in-the-nation one. A Suffolk University poll released in the last week showed Clinton is poised to win in Massachusetts.


And if you had any doubt that D.C. is for the wealthy elite:

"In D.C., public housing tenants forced out, then homes flipped" Associated Press  November 30, 2015

WASHINGTON — In the rapidly gentrifying nation’s capital, real estate investors aren’t the only ones flipping houses for profit.

The city’s public housing authority is getting in on the actionmoving aging tenants out of homes where they’ve lived for decades, renovating them, and selling them to wealthy buyers.

What more is their to $ay? When the public hou$ing authority.... $igh.

The renovations, at a cost of more than $300,000 per home, are outfitting the houses with luxury amenities, and some of the houses have sold for nearly $900,000. Others, however, have sat vacant for a year or longer after tenants were forced out.

The housing authority plans to use the profits to renovate existing subsidized rental units and build new ones. But most of that work hasn’t started, and none of the money has gone to new construction yet, according to the agency.


Some elderly tenants and their children have asked for an opportunity to purchase the homes, only to be rebuffed.

Flipped 'em the old one-percent finger, 'eh?


Were any veterans?

Sunday Globe Special: Navy Veteran is Treated Like Palestinian

It's kind of the way we have all been treated lately here in AmeriKa:

"N.Y. town demolished veteran’s house while he was at rehab for surgery" by Michael Balsamo and Frank Eltman Associated Press  November 28, 2015

WEST HEMPSTEAD, N.Y. — When a US Navy veteran traveled from Long Island to Florida for a knee replacement, his house was the last thing on his mind. But now his memory of it is all he can think about.

Philip Williams’s home was demolished in the spring by town officials while he spent about six months recuperating from surgical complications in Fort Lauderdale. Back in New York, officials in the Town of Hempstead deemed his modest two-story home unfit for habitation and knocked it down.

The 69-year-old is waging a legal battle against the suburban New York town. He wants reimbursement for the house and all the belongings inside.

‘‘I’m angry and I’m upset. It’s just wrong on so many levels,’’ he said ‘‘My mortgage was up to date, my property taxes were up to date . . . everything was current and fine.’’

Williams went to Florida in December 2014 for the procedure so a friend could help with his recovery. But he developed infections that forced further surgery and heart complications, leaving him hospitalized until doctors deemed him medically able to return home in August.

Damn VA!

When Williams pulled up to what should have been a two-story, cream-colored cottage with a red door in West Hempstead, there was just an empty lot.

‘‘My first thought was there was a fire or something,’’ Williams said.

But there was no fire. According to town officials, neighbors had been complaining the house was in disrepair and a blight on the community. Hempstead officials, responding to those complaints, sent inspectors and determined the house was a ‘‘dilapidated dwelling’’ unfit for habitation. So they knocked it down.

‘‘The house was in terrible condition for a long time,’’ next-door neighbor Keylin Escobar said. ‘‘Nobody really lived in the house; the house was abandoned. Everyone who came over to visit, people always say, ‘What’s going on with this house?’’’

Did they really?

Kathleen Keicher, who has lived across the street from Williams for 12 years, said notices tacked to the front door of the home began piling up and the house had holes in the side and appeared unkempt.

‘‘I feel terrible. When we knew a house was coming down, it was sad,’’ she said. ‘‘We thought the house was coming down, someone would buy the land, a new house would come up, a new family would move in. . . . We don’t want anyone to lose their home.’’

I don't know what to make of that. Crocodile tears? Isn't Hempstead a rich community?

Williams says he was never contacted and believes town officials thought his house was a ‘‘zombie home’’ — a dwelling abandoned after foreclosure proceedings begin, but one not yet seized by the bank — and rushed to demolish it.

‘‘The town basically took everything from me,’’ said Williams, who is now staying with a friend in Florida and has only two suitcases of belongings. ‘‘The town does not have a right to take all of my property, all of my possessions.’’

Well, it shouldn't it. I don't know if that is the reality in AmeriKa anymore. Authority, if you haven't noticed, is above the law these days.

Williams had lived in the house since he was 6 months old. He said many of the items in the home had been in his family since he was a newborn or had sentimental value, like his late wife’s engagement ring, photos of his six children growing up and a model train set he had since he was a child. He lost all of his clothing, a bicycle he’d just purchased, dishes, silverware, and other housewares.

I read that and my heart just broke. And he is a vet, for God's sake. 

So much for $upport the troops.

Town officials say they tried to contact Williams and provided the Associated Press copies of letters they said they mailed to the home and to banks. They also held a public hearing before going forward with the demolition.

And who could ever doubt their forthrightness?

But Williams contends he never received any of the notices and said he couldn’t figure out why the letters were mailed to four separate banks where he never had accounts.

‘‘I have no idea who those banks are,’’ Williams said. ‘‘But they never contacted me in any way, shape, or form.’’

I'm thinking his mortgage was sliced and bundled into some securities by the Wall Street $windlers. 

And that’s why his attorney believes the town’s actions were illegal.

‘‘Under the law, it should not happen,’’ Bradley Siegel said.

Williams has filed a notice of claim, the first step in a lawsuit against the town, and is fighting for records he believes may show what happened.

The town said in a statement that it ‘‘followed all proper procedure with regard to property owner notification.’’ But town officials refused to answer any other questions, citing pending litigation.

Williams has contacted police and the Nassau County district attorney’s office and has asked for a criminal inquiry. A spokesman for the district attorney’s office said the matter is under review.

‘‘You see people who went through a tornado or a flood and they say they lost everything, but that’s not preventable,’’ Williams said. ‘‘This was preventable. The town took my house.’’

Look on the bright side: they didn't bomb it like the Israelis bombed the USS Liberty.


I really didn't have much to say during this piece because it has become not only increasingly clear, but in a fart-in-your-face kind of way, that authority on all levels is serving wealth here in 21st-century AmeriKa. They aren't even trying to hide it anymore because, hey, whatcha gonna do? Wealthy inequality yawns wider giving the agenda-pushers more tools to make ignorance grow -- except it doesn't. Even idiots can become enraged when punched in the nose. While not advocating violence or revolution in any way, there is precedence in France (another reason the false flag struck Paris?) for such things. I'm sure as hell not going to stand in the way of the mob for callous cretins who have ruined the world for us all.

Sunday Globe Special: Global Warming Argument Weak

It is because they have lost their strength:

"Large-scale deal to cut emissions expected, but falls far short of goal" by Justin Gillis New York Times  November 28, 2015

The prospect of any progress has elicited cheers in many quarters, yet the negotiators have declined to take up a recommendation from scientists, made several years ago, that they set a cap on total greenhouse gases as a way to achieve that goal, and then figure out how to allocate the emissions fairly.

Oh, yeah? So who is going to decide that?

The pledges countries are making are voluntary, and were established in most nations as a compromise between the desire to be ambitious and the perceived cost and political difficulty of emissions cutbacks.

They aren't serious.

In effect, the countries are vowing to make changes that collectively still fall far short of the necessary goal, much like a patient who, upon hearing from his doctor that he must lose 50 pounds to avoid life-threatening health risks, takes pride in cutting out fries but not cake and ice cream.

The scientists argue that there is only so much carbon — in the form of exhaust from coal-burning power plants, automobile tailpipes, forest fires, and the like — that the atmosphere can absorb before the planet suffers profound damage, with swaths of it potentially becoming uninhabitable.

Well, I'm not going to belabor the point, but it is the methane from the oil and gas drilling and fracking that is far more of a problem.

Related: Government, private sector need to invest in clean energy

Where did he make his money, and where has he been all these decades?

US to decide whether a nuclear plant can outlive average human

Any idea that this government is interested in the environment or clean energy melts down there, and I want you to consider this next thought carefully no matter what your position on this issue. 

What we have here is a bunch of New World Order globalists (for lack of a better term) pushing a tax and limits on carbon to save the planet. This is the same crew that has neglected renewable and clean energy while having its pockets filled by fossil fuel interests and fighting wars on their behalf for control of those same resources, thus adding to the alleged problem. 

Anybody $ee the di$connect there?

After years of studying the issue, the experts recommended to climate diplomats in 2013 that they consider the concept of a “carbon budget” to help frame the talks. Yet the idea was quickly dismissed as politically impractical, and more recent pleas from countries like Bolivia to consider it have been ignored.

It would require the world's biggest polluter and war machine to be shut down.

If any serious push had been made ahead of Paris to divvy up the emissions budget, the negotiators “would have all run screaming from the room,” said Michael A. Levi, an energy expert at the Council on Foreign Relations, in New York. “So that’s not a real alternative.”

What more is there to argue?

The carbon budget will probably not get much attention in Paris for simple reasons.

What $neaky $hit are they up to now!?

Wrestling with a budget would, for instance, throw into stark relief the global inequities at the heart of the climate crisis. And it would underscore just how big the problem really is, how costly the delay in tackling it has been and how inadequate the plans being discussed in Paris are for limiting the risks. 

In other words, we are having smoke blown up our you-know-what's by this confabulation of cretins in Paris (nothing on the terrorists today?).

Consider, for example, that Europe, the United States, and China have offered emissions-reduction pledges that are their most ambitious ever. And yet, if their plans are carried out, a recent analysis suggests those regions will use up most of the remaining room for emissions in the atmosphere, leaving relatively little for the other 5 billion people on the planet or their descendants.

The global genocide that some have been screaming about almost makes sense when one reads that from a certain point of view (not mine).

To change that equation, the biggest polluters would have to commit to cutting their emissions at rates that would be difficult to achieve, potentially disruptive to their economies and politically unrealistic.

It's all hot air, as they used to say.

Moreover, any serious discussion of the carbon budget would amplify a point of serious contention, known as “climate injustice,” in the talks. It refers to the idea that poor countries bear little past responsibility for climate change but are first in line to suffer its consequences, without much capacity to protect themselves.

Many of those same countries want to develop their economies by burning some fossil fuels, but because decades of high emissions by richer countries have created such profound risks, they are under pressure to adopt costlier green energy instead.

Given the political realities, some of the scientists involved in devising the carbon budget have resigned themselves to seeing it ignored in this round of negotiations, with the hope that countries will accelerate their efforts in coming years.

Myles R. Allen, a climate scientist at Oxford University and a leading proponent of the budget idea, said it was better for countries to keep negotiating than not. “It was probably the right call to brush it under the carpet for now,” he said.

So you can't see it, citizen!


Tell it to the Southwest:

"A deadly storm that has caused flooding and coated parts of the southern Plains in ice during the Thanksgiving holiday weekend dumped more rain on already swollen rivers in parts of North Texas and Arkansas on Sunday, and made driving dangerous in parts of Oklahoma."

There are ice storms in Oklahoma and 14 people are dead. 

I hold conference gatherers responsible for every single one.

Anyway, I don't want to talk about the issue anymore. It's literally been a flood (quick, Chris, you are needed back in New Jersey) of agenda-approved slop this morning and thus it is time to get off the this train (all China's fault anyway). 

Globe wishes you the best of Health in any event.

Sunday, November 29, 2015

Sunday Globe Special: The Play is the Thing

I skipped basketball to see this?

"Theater companies find fault sometimes is in their stars; Marquee names are a draw at the box office but can be a drain on the stage" by Don Aucoin Globe Staff  November 28, 2015

As both noun and verb, there is probably no more important word in show business than “star.’’

But the reality is that when it comes to the stage, glittering names on the marquee can be a decidedly mixed blessing. Theater companies and producers who try to tap into star power are often faced with a trade-off between the potential of boffo box office (especially advance sales) and the peril of artistic letdown (which alienates the very audiences who bought those advance tickets). The biggest name onstage can also be the weakest link.

Because they’re squeezing in theater appearances between movie or TV commitments, some big-name stars appear out of synch and out of place. Watching them flounder, you wonder how much work they did to unearth the essence of their characters, how little thought they’ve given to the unique dynamics of live performance (for instance, projecting to the last row, since there are no close-ups in theater), and even, sometimes, how certain of their lines they are.

Look no further than the stage adaptation of Stephen King’s “Misery’’ to see a vivid example of the way a big star, trying to range beyond the arenas where he made his name, can damage a production....

I wonder who they could mean.


I'm wondering how lies can damage a production.


"Standing amid the Colonial Theatre’s gilt-edged opulence, you feel connected to a storied past. But the recent news that the Colonial will close for at least a year raises questions about the venue’s future — and highlights major changes that have swept through Boston’s theatrical landscape over the past dozen years."

Also see: Colonial Theatre to close at least a year, but future uncertain

"Emerson College may turn Colonial into student center" by Malcolm Gay Globe Staff  October 08, 2015

Emerson College is considering radically transforming the Colonial Theatre, converting the fabled playhouse into a flexible college dining hall/performance space as part of what’s being referred to as the Colonial Student Center, according to documents recently obtained by the Globe.

The plans would position the Colonial Building and adjacent Walker Building as the front porch of Emerson’s campus, housing an Emerson College cafe and visitors’ center, accessible from the street.

In an interview on Wednesday, Emerson College president Lee Pelton emphasized that the plan detailed in the documents is but one of several options the college is considering and that no final decision has been reached.

News of the potential plan brought mixed reactions from figures in the theater community, which for weeks has been speculating about the Colonial’s future.

“It would be a shame not to have the Colonial. It’s a gem,” said Rich Jaffe, president of Broadway in Boston, which has presented touring Broadway shows at the Colonial for years. But, he added, “there are other venues, so there would still be touring shows in Boston without the Colonial.”

But Jon Platt, a Tony Award-winning Broadway producer who ran the Colonial for years, was more harsh, lamenting what he saw as a plan that would “deliberately defile and destroy the greatest theatrical landmark in North America.” That, he said, “is entirely opposite of the school’s mission statement.”



Emerson plan for Colonial Theatre panned by faculty
Emerson College task force to consider Colonial’s future
Colonial Theatre shuts its doors, for now

Which is what I will be doing with any further coverage after this post. For now.

"Emerson College to offer an entrepreneurship major to arts students" by James Sullivan Globe Correspondent  November 16, 2015

In a rapidly changing workplace where careers are fluid and workers must be adept at self-marketing and social media, Yuri Cataldo says that it’s critical for students of the arts and humanities to develop some sense of how to leverage their expertise into paying jobs.

Looks like a dead-end degree to me.

“The ultimate goal is to turn out students who are flexible and creative problem-solvers,” says Cataldo, 35.

So they can join the army.

As he designs the curriculum with the help of faculty from various departments, Cataldo is thinking creatively. Courses will define the creative economy and teach community-building, freelance survival skills, even mindfulness techniques — how to stay in the moment and cope with failure.

“The thing about art is it’s subjective,” he says. “There is no right answer.”

Helena Fruscio, director of the state’s Creative Industries initiative, has already met with Cataldo. “Colleges are one of the key parts of our economic ecosystem,” she says.

Emerson students who graduate from the new major will be better prepared to enter the job market, she says.

“It’s what we’re hearing from employers as well. They need creative, self-motivated, entrepreneurial employees, not just, ‘I know how to do this one task.’ ”

So how much student debt will be accumulated for the pie-in-the-sky spot?


I'm sorry, readers, but this is no longer fun.

Rapid-fire shifts have Boston’s theater community rattled
Boston’s theaters need to stage a revival
Boston needs to be in the spotlight amid arts upheaval
Huntington Theatre faces uncertainty as BU plans sale of building
Boston Lyric Opera to leave Citi Shubert Theatre 

All shows have been cancelled, and it's a good thing, too.

The artistic side of Harvard’s endowment chief

Here is that paying job you were looking for:

"City names candidates for artist-in-residence program" by Malcolm Gay Globe Staff  October 23, 2015

Inspiration comes in curious forms, and these days Mayor Martin J. Walsh is hoping that a cohort of artists will find it at City Hall, working alongside the departments of public works, property and construction management, and police, to name a few.

Partnering with the Massachusetts College of Art and Design, the Walsh administration is forming the city of Boston’s new artist-in-residence program, or Boston AIR, in which an initial group of 11 local artists will collaborate with city representatives to develop a variety of proposed projects.

The 11 artists — in genres ranging from painting to photography, dance, music, and film — will each receive a $1,000 stipend as they work with City Hall counterparts.

Will that last you the whole year? 

Seems a little low given what they are $helling out for the library.


The artists were selected by a jury of arts professionals and representatives from MassArt and the city. While the artist-in-residence program may be new for Boston, it’s an idea several cities have implemented over the years. The program is funded in part through the National Endowment for the Arts Our Town grant program, which since its 2011 creation has awarded 325 grants totaling nearly $26 million.... 

I have nothing against the arts (even if they are the playgrounds of the elites), but that is more money the federal government doesn't have.

Of course, if they stopped the wars based on lies the arts could have all the money they wanted from me.



"The Boston Foundation has named 10 local artists as 2015 Brother Thomas Fellows, providing each with $15,000 in recognition of their work. This year’s round of the biennial fellowships, which are funded through the Brother Thomas Fund, brings the total number of Brother Thomas Fellows to 30."

That might last you the year.

Also see‘Inside Out’ art project puts murals of residents’ faces onto public buildings 

It will be like looking into a mirror.

Saturday, November 28, 2015

Chicago Protests Killing Christmas

Chicago protesters take to streets to condemn police shooting
The Boston Globe-20 hours ago
By Mitch Smith New York Times November 27, 2015. CHICAGO — Demonstrators filled the streets of this city's premier shopping district on Friday, demanding ...

Anger Over Killing by Police Halts Shopping in Chicago

Comparing: Anger Over Killing by Police Halts Shopping in Chicago

See the difference?

Three are killed in siege at Colorado clinic

It's the lead story this morning.

Shootout at Planned Parenthood Clinic Leaves 3 Dead »
Related: Another Mass Shooting Just in Time to Flip the Script 

See what has been knocked down to second this time?

Sorry to spoil things by being one step ahead (another active shooter drill?).

What has them all worked up anyway?

"Judge orders Chicago police to release shooting video" Associated Press  November 20, 2015

CHICAGO — A judge said Thursday that the Chicago Police Department has less than a week to release a video of an officer fatally shooting a black teenager, refusing to give the department more time pending a possible appeal.

The video is graphic, according to some who have seen it: The 17-year-old wielding a small knife is walking away from police when one officer opens fire, shooting the teen 16 times.

Police had refused to release footage of the October 2014 shooting of Laquan McDonald, [and] McDonald’s mother also doesn’t want the video released. She fears it could lead to violent protests like those in Baltimore and Ferguson, Mo., after police-involved deaths of black residents in those cities, according to the family’s attorney, Jeffrey Neslund.

Neslund, who has seen the video, said the footage shows that McDonald was armed with a small knife. But he said it also clearly shows that the teen was walking away from police when a white officer, who was about 15 feet away, opened fire.

‘‘You see the officer begin to shoot, and he [McDonald] spins and falls to the ground,’’ he said. Neslund said the officer then ‘‘continues to shoot him.’’

The Chicago City Council took the unusual step in April of approving a $5 million settlement with McDonald’s family, even though the family hadn’t filed a lawsuit, after being advised to do so by a city attorney who had seen the video....


"Amid unrest, US will investigate Minn. killing" by Greg Moore Associated Press  November 23, 2015

MINNEAPOLIS — In a separate development, police in Chicago are under court order to release by Wednesday a police video of the fatal shooting of a black 17-year-old by a white police officer there.

According to a few people who have viewed it, the video shows Laquan McDonald being struck by 16 bullets, some of them hitting him even after his body had fallen to the ground along a street on this city’s southwest side in October 2014. Some of the bullets, an autopsy shows, entered the back of his body.

A lawyer for McDonald’s family said the video showed him moving away from Officer Jason Van Dyke, the police officer who fired all of the shots, while at least five other officers never fired their weapons.

Dan Herbert, a lawyer for Van Dyke, said his client believed the shooting was justified because he feared for the safety of himself and his colleagues.

McDonald had a knife, the authorities say, and earlier punctured a squad car’s tire with it and refused to drop it.

The officers were approaching him, officials said, after the police got a report that a man with a knife was trying to break into vehicles in a trucking yard.

Van Dyke is on administrative duty pending an inquiry by a team that includes the FBI, the US attorney’s office in Chicago, and the Cook County state’s attorney’s office.


Also seeEmanuel meets ministers to discuss police shooting video

"Chicago officer accused of murder in teen’s death; Charge comes as video is released of 2014 shooting" by Monica Davey and Mitch Smith New York Times  November 25, 2015

My print version is AP.

"CHICAGO (AP) — A white Chicago police officer who shot a black teenager 16 times last year was charged with first-degree murder Tuesday, hours before the city released a video of the killing that many people fear could spark unrest.

City officials and community leaders have been bracing for the release of the dash-cam video, fearing the kind of turmoil that occurred in cities such as Baltimore and Ferguson, Missouri, after young black men were slain by police or died in police custody.

They got it worse; shopping was shut down.

A judge ordered that the recording be made public by Wednesday. Moments before it was released, the mayor and the police chief appealed for calm.

"People have a right to be angry. People have a right to protest. People have a right to free speech. But they do not have a right to ... criminal acts," Police Superintendent Garry McCarthy said.

Only authority and bankers have that right.

Shortly after the video's release, protesters began marching through city streets. Several hundred people blocked traffic on the near West Side. Some circled police cars in an intersection and chanted "16 shots."

"I'm so hurt and so angry," said Jedidiah Brown, a South Side activist and pastor who had just seen the video. "I can feel pain through my body."

Small groups of demonstrators marched up Michigan Avenue with a police escort before being stopped by officers as they headed toward Lake Shore Drive. After a short standoff, the crowd turned around.

"You had this tape for a year, and you are only talking to us now because you need our help keeping things calm," the Rev. Corey Brooks said of Monday's community gathering with the mayor.

An autopsy report showed that McDonald was shot at least twice in his back and PCP, a hallucinogenic drug, was found in his system.


At the time of his death, police were responding to complaints about someone breaking into cars and stealing radios."

That's worthy of a 16 shot fusillade and death.

"Chicago’s minority leaders seek sweeping change; Video spurs call of US inquiry of police department" by Monica Davey and Mitch Smith New York Times  November 25, 2015

My print version again carried an AP piece:

"Small groups of demonstrators gathered, about two dozen protesters. The group held banners showing photos of other black people fatally shot by police in Chicago and elsewhere. Several protesters said they were parents of black men killed by Chicago officers. ‘‘You cannot kill our children and expect us to be quiet any longer,’’ protester Quovadis Green said. ‘‘It is unacceptable.’’ Activist Mark Carter called on people to ‘‘rise up’’ and shut down the Magnificent Mile shopping area on Friday. He said protesters also planned to target the Board of Trade and other landmarks in the coming days. 

Target like terrorists!

Also Wednesday, a Cook County judge dismissed a charge against a protester accused of hitting a police officer in the hours after the video was made public. Judge Peggy Chiampas said the state’s attorney’s office recommended dropping the charge against 22-year-old Malcolm London and told London he was free to go. London, who was wearing a T-shirt with the phrase ‘‘Unapologetically black’’ on it, walked outside the courthouse to loud cheers. Prosecutors did not explain why they sought to dismiss the charge. London was among five people arrested on charges that included weapons possession and resisting arrest. 

This is smelling like another controlled effort for the obvious reasons.

Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Rodham Clinton also weighed in, saying in an emailed statement, that police officers across the country are doing their duty honorably ‘‘without resorting to unnecessary force.’’ For months, Chicago leaders had feared that the release of the video could provoke the kind of turmoil that rocked cities such as Baltimore and Ferguson, Missouri, after young black men were slain by police or died in police custody."

"Chicago officer who shot teen amassed 18 civilian complaints" by Michael Tarm Associated Press  November 25, 2015

CHICAGO — The white Chicago police officer charged with first-degree murder in the shooting of a black teenager was the subject of 18 civilian complaints over 14 years, including allegations that he used racial epithets and excessive force, police and court records show. 

Related: Obama the Hypocrite Hosts Cops in Chicago 

Complaints against police are not uncommon. But the number filed against Jason Van Dyke was high, and at least one was linked to a civil trial in which jurors awarded damages to someone he arrested.

Van Dyke’s lawyer, Daniel Herbert, did not respond to a message left Wednesday by the Associated Press seeking comment.

After the complaints were filed, Van Dyke, 37, who joined the department in 2001, denied every allegation. None of the complaints resulted in disciplinary action. Here’s a closer look at some of the cases:


Kid kind of brought it on himself:

"Chicago teen killed by officer had troubled, broken family; Protesters plan massive rally at shopping region" by Michael Tarm and Sara Burnett Associated Press  November 27, 2015

CHICAGO — A black teenager shot 16 times by a white Chicago police officer was a ward of the state when he died, having spent years being shuttled among relatives’ homes and foster care from the time he was 3.

Laquan McDonald, whose name demonstrators have shouted for two days and will likely shout again during a planned rally to disrupt the city’s famed Magnificent Mile shopping corridor Friday, lived a troubled, disadvantaged life. He had at least one previous brush with police.

School officials and the McDonald family lawyer say there were signs Laquan was trying to get his life in order, though prosecutors say he had drugs in his system and was burglarizing cars on Oct. 20, 2014 — the night a squad-car video captured officer Jason Van Dyke shooting him.

‘‘It takes a while to get a life back on track,’’ said Thomas Gattuso, the principal at the alternative high school where McDonald was attending. ‘‘With Laquan, we unfortunately never got to finish his story.’’

Protesters and civil rights activists are demanding more investigations and police reform after Van Dyke was charged with first-degree murder this week. There have been two nights of small, peaceful demonstrations, and the Rev. Jesse Jackson and others have called for a ‘‘massive’’ march on Black Friday along Michigan Avenue, a swank downtown boulevard that’s normally packed with post-Thanksgiving shoppers.

He might not be the best spokesman for the job.

McDonald’s family has appealed for calm, and his mother at least initially opposed the public release of the graphic police video showing his death, attorney Michael Robbins said.

‘‘Don’t resort to violence in Laquan’s name,’’ a family statement said Monday.

The family, who received a $5 million settlement from the city months before Van Dyke was charged even without filing a lawsuit, has declined to speak with the media. Robbins would not comment on the family’s history other than acknowledging it was splintered. He said McDonald grew up without his father involved in his life.

McDonald’s mother had been trying to regain custody of her son before he was killed and had been granted permission to take a younger sister back into her home, Robbins said.

McDonald spent most of his 17 years as a ward of the state. According to Illinois Department of Children and Family Services’ records, he was taken from his mother at age 3 in 2000 because the agency had deemed she didn’t provide him with proper supervision. He was placed in a foster home.

He later moved to his great-grandmother’s and returned to his mother in 2002. But citing physical abuse by the mother’s then-boyfriend, the state took McDonald away. From around age 6 to 16, he lived with his great-grandmother and then stayed in the same house with an uncle after his great-grandmother died in 2014.

McDonald was arrested for possession of marijuana in January 2014, state records say.

On the night he was shot, police suspected him of breaking into vehicles and stealing radios, Cook County State’s Attorney Anita Alvarez said. As police approached him, he allegedly slashed a tire of one of the squad cars with a knife. An autopsy report said small amounts of PCP, a hallucinogenic drug, were in his system.

Gattuso said McDonald took the initiative to attend a school for at-risk students and high school dropouts between the ages of 16 and 21. That was some proof McDonald understood he needed to get his life together, Gattuso said, describing the student as quick to smile and hug his teachers. He regularly made As and Bs, Gattuso said.


Globe says they could have handled it better:

"Chicago botches police shooting case" by The Editorial Board   November 25, 2015

When Boston Police and the Suffolk district attorney’s office moved quickly to release video in two controversial police shootings this year, they won praise for transparency. But they also raised a lingering question: Would the authorities have acted so fast if the videos in question didn’t support the police account?

Hopefully, it’ll never come to that in Boston. But if there were ever any question about the proper response, the mishandling of a police shooting case in Chicago should be an illustration of how stonewalling can undermine community trust and make bad situations worse.

The case that is now roiling Chicago has been gathering steam for a year, since a white Chicago police officer, Jason Van Dyke, shot and killed Laquan McDonald, a black teenager, as police responded to a call about car break-ins. The police initially said that McDonald was threatening officers. They did not release video of the incident, however, which was captured by a police car’s dashboard camera.

The police account was challenged by witnesses almost immediately. Then the city of Chicago reached a $5 million settlement with McDonald’s family earlier this year, before the family even filed a lawsuit — an usual decision if the shooting were truly justified. Word began to spread that the video recording showed something far different than what police initially described.

At any point, the Chicago police and Mayor Rahm Emanuel could have decided to release the video. Instead, it took a journalist requesting the recording under the state’s public records law, and a local judge, to force the city’s hand.

The video, released Tuesday evening, showed Van Dyke gunning down McDonald with little justification, and then continuing to pump bullets into the body. None of the other officers at the scene fired their weapons. On Tuesday, with the video’s release imminent, prosecutors charged Van Dyke with first-degree murder.

Chicago had no good reason to withhold the tape. Emanuel offered the traditional excuse — that release would have compromised the investigation — which the judge properly rejected. To state what should be obvious: Just because authorities claim that releasing information would jeopardize a prosecution doesn’t make it true. While it’s possible that withholding a video recording for a short period of time might be necessary in some scenarios, McDonald’s shooting was clearly not one of them. And it’s hard to imagine that the city would have been so shy if the video vindicated the officers’ accounts.

The city’s decision to withhold the video has left it with a bigger challenge than it would have had otherwise. Whatever his motivations may have been, Emanuel created the perception that he placed the police’s interest above the public’s when he kept the video secret. “The mayor has to understand, you can’t keep waiting until it looks forced,” said Jedidiah Brown, founder of Chicago’s Young Leaders Alliance in the Chicago Tribune.

It’s a self-inflicted wound in a city where police were already mistrusted. That cannot happen again — in Chicago, Boston, or anywhere else.

But I bet it will.


Also see:

"A Chicago man was charged with first-degree murder Friday in connection with the slaying of a 9-year-old boy who police say was lured from a playground and shot in the head because of his father’s gang ties."

Related: Gang Killed Child in Chicago 

The biggest gang going:

"Illinois officer spent embezzled money on coffee, movies" Associated Press  November 19, 2015

FOX LAKE, Ill. — A northern Illinois police officer who authorities say killed himself after years of embezzling from a police-sponsored youth program spent the stolen money on items such as coffee, restaurant meals, and trips to the movies, according to court documents.

The records were released Tuesday by attorneys for Melodie Gliniewicz, the widow of late Fox Lake Lieutenant Charles Joseph Gliniewicz. Authorities say he staged his suicide to look like a homicide because he feared the embezzlement was about to be exposed.

Melodie Gliniewicz’s attorneys argue prosecutors wrongly froze six accounts and two credit cards on Nov. 6 and said in a news release that she can’t pay her mortgage, doctor bills, and other family expenses. Attorneys are asking for the freeze to be lifted. An official briefed on the investigation has told the Associated Press that Melodie, and Gliniewicz’s son, D.J., are under investigation.

Attorneys said in the release that Melodie Gliniewicz was asking all to ‘‘refrain from rushing to, or misplacing, judgment’’ and have “faith the truth will come out in time, and if necessary, in court.’’



Murder of 9 year old Chicago Boy Tyshawn Lee is an Arch Zionist Gun Control Hoax 

That might be disinfo, but who knows anymore? 

"Colo. Planned Parenthood shooting suspect mentioned ‘no more baby parts,’ official says; Police scour Robert Dear’s past for clues to clinic siege" by Wesley Lowery and Danielle Paqette Washington Post   November 28, 2015

My print copy was by the NYT (rewritten and reedited, of course), and honestly I've been waiting for this planned propaganda operation for a while. It now brings sympathy for the butchers at Planned Parenthood while knocking the protests in Chicago down and allowing authority to call for more gun control.

Meaning the whole thing (“extremists are creating a poisonous environment that feeds domestic terrorism”) is likely a deliberate fabrication (surveillance saved lives, they are saying!). Thus, until further notice, all mass shootings reported by the propaganda pre$$ will be considered scripted fakes and fictions until proven otherwise, and speaking of hoaxes:

"It was big news. The Boston Globe and The New York Times ran front-page reports; the story went global as TV crews and bloggers and wire services joined the fray. But doubt swiftly set in."

Takes all of about two seconds after ma$$ media reporting these days, and that's a big one, huh?


For Pope Francis, wisdom comes from the poor

Pope Francis celebrates Mass in Uganda honoring African martyrs

Everyone looks gay, huh?

Archdiocese polls Catholics on views of church, leaders

I pretty much just told them how I feel about my church, haven't I?

And not one word from the Globe on the Chicago protests today.