"Union boss who defended state troopers faces his own fraud investigation" by Andrea Estes Globe Staff November 11, 2018
As State Police trooper after trooper filed into court this year to face fraud or misconduct charges, they’ve had one staunch defender on their side.
Passionate, profane, and often pugnacious, longtime union boss Dana Pullman has downplayed trooper wrongdoing, chiding politicians and blaming State Police officials for fostering a culture of corruption.
“Where’s the accountability at the top?” Pullman has asked repeatedly, but now the tables have turned on Pullman, a towering man who — until recently — had near total control of the powerful union. He’s at the center of his own federal fraud investigation, with investigators asking whether the union leader was helping himself while helping others.
Agents from the FBI and IRS are poring over the financial records of the 1,900-person union, including documents related to millions of dollars in revenue and assets that Pullman alone had access to, according to one person with direct knowledge.
Investigators are trying to determine whether Pullman financed a lavish personal lifestyle on the union’s dime, spending tens of thousands of dollars on expensive restaurants like Morton’s, Mooo, and Abe & Louie’s, and a fully equipped $70,000 Chevy Suburban, the person said.
Retired State Police major Dennis Galvin said the union’s aggressive lobbying under Pullman and donations to state lawmakers have enhanced its clout.
Of nearly a dozen current and former municipal police officials contacted by the Globe, none wanted to comment on the influence of the State Police force or its union.
Besides instilling fear in some, Pullman also inspired loyalty. There were few people he wouldn’t do favors for. He took calls in the middle of the night from anguished troopers under investigation. He serves on the board of the Greg Hill Foundation, created by a Worcester radio disc jockey that provides funds to families touched by tragedy, and his nonstop, profanity-laced rants made him as entertaining as he was forbidding.
The upheaval at the State Police Association of Massachusetts occurs as State Police rank-and-file are being scrutinized like never before, facing internal audits as well as state and federal criminal investigations.
The new union president, Sergeant Mark Lynch, has already been questioned by federal investigators, and several members of the executive board are expected to cooperate with prosecutors, according to one person with direct knowledge.....
I've avoided commenting until now because this is the way I see the whole exposure of corruption within the State Police:
The Globe initially began their investigation with the lone motive of removing them from the Seaport and turning the jurisdiction over to the Bo$ton police (local police are always more amenable to richer pressure than are a state or federal entity). They had no idea what lay underneath the scab they were about to rip off.
As far as Pullman and the union, I suppose they are guilty of the malfeasance being charged by the government; however, I can see some viewing it as traditional union busting, which has a long history in this country and is more often than not violent and the beat goes on.
"A man and woman were arrested Sunday in Fitchburg after Massachusetts State Police found heroin and other drugs, along with a loaded firearm, in their possession during a traffic stop, State Police said. About 10:18 p.m., State Police pulled over a 2007 Volkswagen Jetta for motor vehicle violations near the intersection of Eaton Street, State Police said in a statement. After an investigation, State Police found the driver Robert J. Ortiz, of Erving,, and passenger Kishania I. Vega-Martinez, of Turners Falls,, in possession of 48 grams of heroin, 8 grams of cocaine, and a bag with “green vegetable matter” and two pills, State Police said. Ortiz was also found with a loaded Smith & Wesson .40 caliber pistol, State Police said. Ortiz is licensed to carry a firearm, but it is unlawful to carry a firearm while trafficking narcotics, which is a felony, State Police said. Ortiz and Vega-Martinez, both 28, were arrested and taken to the State Police Barracks in Leominster for booking. Both were charged with trafficking in heroin/morphine/opium, possession to distribute a Class B drug, and conspiracy to violate a drug law, State Police said. Ortiz was additionally charged with possession of a firearm in felony and speeding. Vega-Martinez was held on $50,000 bail, and Ortiz was held on $20,000 bail, State Police said. Both are expected to be arraigned in Fitchburg District Court Tuesday morning.
Did I mention I still want them out there, scandals and all (that cuts way too close to home)?
Keep that poison out!
I felt the same with this poison, but too late:
Legal sports betting will begin in R.I. casinos later this month
Also coming to Mississippi at a location near you!
A century later, local World War I hero honored
We will get to the rest of them later. Much later.
[flip to below fold]
Vital to the region’s waters, kelp suffers as the Gulf of Maine warms
Michelle Obama, Gabrielle Union shine a light on infertility struggles
Somehow, it seems appropriate that those articles were kept submerged and out of sight.
Florida election recount continues amid tensions, litigation
Was my National lead, and I am most despondent at the massive Democratic vote fraud and theft this past week.
Camp Fire kills 29, matching the deadliest wildfire in California history
No longer a Paradise, the death toll is up to 42, and you can see the smoke from here. Can't even find the phone booth in Somerville and make the call for help as the stocks slide (glad to see my pre$$ have its priorities in place).
Gunman who killed 12 died from self-inflicted gunshot
I've seen that script before, and now we are being told he was a ticking time bomb back in high school (so, naturally, the Army let him enlist so he could learn how to kill people. Now the agenda pushers can get the guns out of the hands of the leaders of any real resistance) and has again surfaced in New Mexico (whatever happened to that immigrant camp where they were training school shooters? You know, the one the FBI destroyed).
Convicted West Virginia Supreme Court justice stepping down
The hearing was a while ago.
Robo-calls are at ‘epidemic levels’ this season of health open-enrollments
Either let it ring our shut the phone off (just a one day wonder, and we know the rea$on why!).
"Top Democrats vow to block Whitaker from interfering in Russia inquiry" by Sheryl Gay Stolberg New York Times November 11, 2018
Yeah, their first move was to protect and safeguard Mueller.
WASHINGTON — As they prepare to take control of the House, Democrats are trying to strike a delicate balance between pressing ahead with their legislative agenda and investigating an administration that has operated for two years without any real oversight from Congress. Representative Nancy Pelosi of California, the Democratic leader who hopes to become speaker, insisted Sunday that Democrats do not intend to play politics with their investigatory powers.
“We are responsible. We are not scattershot,” Pelosi said on the CBS program “Face the Nation.” “We are not doing any investigation for a political purpose, but to seek the truth.”
Acting Attorney General Matthew Whitaker has stirred deep concerns among Democrats since President Donald Trump, on the heels of the Republicans’ loss of the House last week, named him acting attorney general after firing Jeff Sessions, who had long endured Trump’s wrath over the Russia inquiry. Among other comments, Whitaker had once declared that there was “no collusion” between the Trump campaign and Russia — a remark that prompted Democrats to say he had prejudged the inquiry’s conclusion.
“If he doesn’t recuse himself, if he has any involvement whatsoever in this Russia probe, we are going to find out,” the incoming chairman of the House Intelligence Committee, Representative Adam Schiff of California, warned on NBC’s “Meet the Press,” adding, “Mr. Whitaker needs to understand that he will be called to answer, and any role that he plays will be exposed to the public.”
They are going to shut down the government if Mueller is not immunized.
You would have thought they had learned their lesson, but they are back to doing the same old BS.
"Trump’s nationalism rebuked at World War I commemoration" by Peter Baker and Alissa J. Rubin New York Times November 11, 2018
PARIS — The anniversary ceremony encapsulated the tension in the international arena as President Trump seeks to rewrite the rules that have governed the world in recent decades.
So do other people, and they are moving ahead without us.
Aside from their friction, Trump’s two-day visit to Paris was marred by his decision Saturday to scrap a planned visit to the Aisne-Marne American Cemetery at the foot of the hill where the Battle of Belleau Wood was fought. Aides cited the rain in canceling a helicopter flight, but it went over badly in Europe.
I will tell you what went over badly with me here later.
Trump had another chance to pay respects to the war dead Sunday at the Suresnes American Cemetery outside Paris, where 1,565 US soldiers are buried. Speaking in a drenching rain, Trump paid tribute to the war heroes and praised Franco-American relations, largely sticking to his prepared text.
In contrast to the stiff interactions with the US president, President Emmanuel Macron of France and Chancellor Angela Merkel of Germany, representing the two nations that were once bitter enemies, demonstrated the close friendship that has emerged from the rubble of war. In appearances over the weekend, the French and German leaders appeared affectionate, and Macron on Saturday posted a picture of the two holding hands.
I wonder if Macron made a move on her since his wife is about the same age.
Led by Macron, dozens of world leaders on Sunday marched down the Champs-Élysées under black umbrellas as a chilly rain fell and soldiers wearing feathered helmets and bearing swords stood watch.
The symbolism of it raining on their war remembrances can't be understated.
There must be a God up or out there somewhere, in whatever form.
At the Arc de Triomphe, bells tolled exactly one century after the guns fell silent at the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month, but the moment of symbolism was lost as the leaders who were supposed to be standing together at that point were still taking their places, and neither the American nor Russian presidents had arrived yet.
Another numerology number on the mind. 11 must hold some significance (9/11, 11 dead at the synagogue, etc).
That's what the globe-kickers do to f*** with us.
Trump arrived in his own motorcade, traveling separately, aides said, because of security, and joined the world leaders under a transparent enclosure at the arch.
Why would he have to worry about that in the friendliest of friendlies in Europe, France?
Then President Vladimir Putin of Russia arrived, approached Trump, shook his hand, and gave him a friendly pat on the arm. The two later chatted briefly at a lunch for all the visiting leaders, according to the Kremlin, but will wait for a formal meeting later this month when both will be in Buenos Aires for a Group of 20 summit.
We know what the symbolism is meant to suggest (thank you, NYT).
Absent from the ceremony were leaders of Britain, the other main ally during the war. Prime Minister Theresa May and members of the royal family attended their own country’s commemorations Sunday, but May made a point of visiting France and Belgium on Friday to lay wreaths at the graves of soldiers killed in World War I.
Not only that, they have an enemy within -- those that sympathize with the you know.
The war to end all wars, as it was called, did nothing of the sort — the world found itself in conflagration again just two decades later, but World War I marked the beginning of a new era of US leadership beyond its shores and, in some ways, kicked off a century-long effort to tie the nations of the world together in an interdependent way — the global order rejected by Trump.....
Maybe that's the reason the wars never end, 'eh?
Especially when the Project for the New American Century guys (NSA Bolton is one!) are getting the endless wars they always wanted.
Why he needed the security:
"Parisians brave the rain to protest Trump" by James McAuley Washington Post November 12, 2018
PARIS — The radical feminist group Femen statement also attacked a number of other world leaders present for the occasion, notably President Vladimir Putin of Russia, President Recep Erdogan of Turkey, and Benjamin Netanyahu, the Israeli prime minister.
‘‘Does Trump work for peace when he flouts international treaties? No! Is Putin working for peace in Syria when he defends dictator Bashar al-Assad? No!’’ the statement read.
They just exposed the controlled opposition crap by lumping them all together (the pre$$ coverage is the first tell).
The irony is, it IS PUTIN who is insisting on adherence to international law and institutions like the U.N.
Is that why the U.S. wants out of it?
‘‘Does Erdogan work for peace when he’s perpetuating Armenian Genocide denial? Or when he keeps attacking Kurdish people? No! . . . Does Netanyahu work for peace when bombing Gaza? No!’’
Police detained two people in total, according to Reuters.
On the other side of town, in the symbolic Place de la Republique, a bigger, planned protest took place.
Although nowhere close to the size of the recent London demonstrations against Trump, the group of hundreds of left-wing activists, students, and neighborhood residents braved the cold November rain to voice anger with Trump’s policies.
It's already cold over there?
The US president is deeply unpopular in France, where 65 percent of voters view him in a negative light, according to a poll by the Odoxa agency for the Figaro newspaper that was released last week. Like the London event, the Paris protest featured the same giant balloon of Trump styled as a baby, wearing nothing but a diaper and clutching a smartphone.
Some of those gathered in Paris expressed disgust with the White House’s policy of separating migrant families at the US-Mexico border.
The "caravan" is on the move again.
Others shared those concerns, but, like Femen, were also sharply critical of President Emmanuel Macron of France for having invited Trump, in addition to continuing to do business with Saudi Arabia.
Ties with Saudi Arabia have become an increasingly pressing issue here in the aftermath of the killing of journalist Jamal Khashoggi, a Washington Post contributing columnist, in early October. Khashoggi, a Saudi citizen and critic of the Saudi leadership, was killed after he entered the Saudi consulate in Istanbul to obtain a document necessary for his upcoming marriage.
That now looks like a cover story. He was lured there by something else.
Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman stands accused of having ordered the killing of the journalist. Mohammed denies any role in it.
That's the new spin. He didn't know about it.
In the aftermath of the affair, Chancellor Angela Merkel of Germany announced that she would suspend German arms sales to Saudi Arabia. France, however, like other European countries, issued a sharp rebuke over Khashoggi’s killing but stopped short of halting arms sales.
‘‘We’re against Trump, but also against Macron’s international politics,’’ said Mihan, a 32-year-old Paris resident who would give only her first name. ‘‘Don’t forget it’s France that also sells arms to Saudi Arabia.’’
In Europe, Britain and France sell the largest amounts of arms to Saudi Arabia. In 2017, potential French sales of more than $14.7 billion were approved.
All I am going to say is look at how my pre$$ turned the protests into a chance to spout at Saudi Arabia and talk weapons sales. It's just all agenda, all the time with them, and I didn't see the word Yemen mentioned.
‘‘I’m here against Trump, but also against Macron, who invited all these killers here,’’ said Juliette Moulin, 70, a retiree who lives in Paris. ‘‘We stopped this morning to celebrate the end of war, but with friends like these — Trump, Erdogan — the future will be the same.’’
Yup, pretty much.
What I view as the most pressing issue of the present:
"Fresh fighting erupts amid steps to tone down Gaza violence" Associated Press November 12, 2018
JERUSALEM — A fresh wave of fighting erupted between Israeli forces and Palestinian militants in the Gaza Strip on Sunday, leaving at least six militants dead just as Israel and Hamas had appeared to be making progress toward ratcheting down months of border violence.
What I noticed right off was an Israel but no Palestine (or even Gaza). It is Israel and Palestinian militants in the Gaza Strip. It clues you into to where this is all going, with Trump's blessing and approval. It's all going to be Israel at some point.
The second thing is the timing, once again most advantageous for the Zionist state.
Although it was unclear what set off the burst of violence, Hamas said a ‘‘security incident’’ had left ‘‘a number’’ dead and wounded, while the Israeli military said an ‘‘exchange of fire’’ took place during operational activity in Gaza. The Palestinian Health Ministry said six militants were killed and six others wounded, as air raid sirens warning of incoming rockets sounded in southern Israel, near Gaza.
Meaning Israeli forces were infiltrating Gaza, that much is clear.
The development shattered what appeared to be a turning point after months of bloodshed along the Israel-Gaza border. Last week, Israel allowed Qatar to deliver $15 million in aid to Gaza’s cash-strapped Hamas rulers. Hamas responded by lowering the intensity of Friday’s border protest.
I'm surprised they even bothered to mention the protests, and once again, CUI BONO?
So what sort of false flag was Israel arranging, or were they placing rocket squads in the vicinity for a further crackdown?
Laura Levis did not have to die
Seems rather hypocritical of them, no?
My congre$$man (for whom I did not vote; I voted for his Republican opponent, a woman, like one in every four citizens of the state, or so I am told) is going to Cuba.
Hope it's not a junket.
The rise of the democracy entrepreneurs
It's a bu$ine$$ now, and that explains a lot.
No wonder the $y$tem is full of fraud and corruption.
For many Americans, the Democrats and Republicans are both losers
Yeah, it's the one thing on which we all agree.
‘Slave auction’ doesn’t change my view of the Faneuil Hall name change debate
Wasn't that on Saturday?
So what happened to him?
Sure looks like racism to me, despite the marriage.
Veterans honored around Boston on Sunday
I said I would get to them.
The placement was page B5, and this was underneath it:
Concord Masons honor veterans by opening WWI time capsule
The guys behind the war are always honoring the veterans -- until it comes to care after service. Then you get stiffed.
Scott Powell is running Santander under less stress
That's because he is keeping his mouth shut after reinventing how the company works.