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          Forty summers ago – July 5, 1977 – grand jury began hearing testimony, piercing, slightly, the ongoing Showalter hit-run cover-up in New London, CT        


Editor’s Note: The Showalter grand jury is noteworthy in that forces for justice – Judge Joseph Dannehy, Special Prosecutor Austin McGuigan and as many as 17 Connecticut State Police detectives – could only knock down some of the walls protecting New London Police, State’s Attorney C. Robert Satti, Asst. State’s Attorney Harold Dean, Judge Angelo Santaniello, former Mayor Harvey Mallove and others who escaped complete discovery. The cover-up continues to this day, highlighted by the suppression and disappearance of the grand jury transcripts.




The foundation for investigative reporting in this case was developed by John Peterson, who was managing editor of The Norwich Bulletin during the grand jury. The grand jury began hearing testimony on July 5, 1977
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Special Prosecutor McGuigan became Chief State’s Attorney, then was fired after convicting appointees of the governor and many other public officials.

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Chronology, Grand Juror Report, Follow-up Columns
Via
Law And Justice In Everyday Life, CT Law Tribune


F. Lee Bailey on Law and Justice in Everyday Life and the Showalter case:

This book - which is mainly about public officials, police, judges and lawyers either shaming or shining - is a good read. Many of the stories stand alone, like slices of life. Others will appear early in the book, with follow-up chapters later. The crown jewel, in my view, is his handling of the strange death of Kevin Showalter, who was slammed 50 feet down the road in New London, Connecticut on Christmas Eve 1973 while changing a tire on the traffic side of a parked car. For many years, Andy Thibault dogged a case which public officials seemed determined to let die, despite the presence of a likely suspect. He tells me his mentor, John Peterson, broke the case open and then handed over the torch. Joined by the victim's mother, Lucille, who revealed herself as a determined but delightful woman as the story unfolds, Andy beats up on police, prosecutors, judges and governors until finally there is action. Spurred on by an appointment hastened by Gov. Ella Grasso, Judge Joseph Dannehy conducted one of the most brilliant and thorough investigations I have ever seen. If this book were only about the Showalter case, it would be worth the price.

APPENDIX

THE SHOWALTER CHRONOLOGY – A FOUR YEAR SEARCH FOR JUSTICE


New London, Ct.

1973

December 24

Approximately 11:10 to 11:20 p.m. Kevin B. Showalter is killed. Car leaves scene. Only taillights observed by a neighbor.

There is much confusion. Mr. Showalter had been changing a tire on his companion’s car. His companion Debra Emilyta, was sitting about six feet away from the car on a stone wall.

Ms. Emilyta told police she heard a thud, but did not see the car which struck Mr. Showalter. She said she ran across the road, a well-lit section of Pequot Avenue near Plant Street, before seeing Mr. Showalter’s body.

Mr. Showalter’s body was thrown 22 feet from the believed point of impact, onto a sidewalk near a large tree. The police report prepared that night noted the deceased’s shoes were found 110 feet apart. Part of a leg bone was found 75 feet away.

Michael Buscetto of Mike’s Auto Body gives police body putty, apparently from the car which struck Mr. Showalter. The putty never made it to the police station. Det. Lt. Konstanty T. Bucko later denies its existence.

December 25

Autopsy performed. No trace of alcohol or drugs found. Cause of death listed as lacerated liver and broken neck.

In efforts to console Mrs. Showalter, friends, neighbors, witnesses and officials volunteer information about the accident. She quietly listens for about six weeks, taking it for granted that police are acting on the same information. December 26

New London police begin full-scale search for red car.

1974

February 6

FBI report describes paint particles on Mr. Showalter’s clothing as “racing green” or “forest green” used on 1968 Chrysler products.

February 7

Mrs. Showalter notes she had the impression local police were not actively pursuing the case. She began interviewing those persons who came to her voluntarily and made a written record of her findings.

During the next three weeks, Mrs. Showalter spends much of her time making telephone calls and knocking on doors. She and her youngest son Craig, then 14, visited a number of local auto dealers and garages. She said in most cases they were told police had not made any inquiries of them.

February 28

New London police conduct first interview with Harvey N. Mallove, the downtown merchant and former mayor and city councilor. Mallove stated he drove by Pequot Avenue near Plant Street shortly before 11:15 p.m. on Christmas Eve 1973. Seven people near the accident scene contradict what he said he saw.

April 20

Mrs. Showalter writes to State’s Atty. Edmund J. O’Brien, requesting a one-man grand jury investigation into her son’s death. O’Brien never responds.

On the same day, Atty. Thomas Bishop, representing Mrs. Showalter as the administratix of Mr. Showalter’s estate, asks Atty. Joseph Moukawsher to conduct a coroner’s inquest of the hit-run death.

April 23

Moukawsher agrees to conduct inquest but must confer with New London police before setting date.

June 4

Mrs. Showalter writes to New London Police Chief John J. Crowley, asking for a progress report on the investigation by his force. Crowley neither acknowledges receipt of letter nor responds. Copies of letter were sent to City Manager C. Francis Driscoll, and Abraham Kirshenbaum, then chairman of the City Council’s Public Safety Committee.

June 10

Mrs. Showalter asks Superior Court Judge Angelo Santaniello to call for a grand jury investigation.

June 24

Santaniello notes Moukawsher has agreed to conduct coroner’s inquest. He tells Mrs. Showalter, “If it appears that during any stage of this proceeding that any further intercession is necessary, appropriate action will be taken at that time.”

July 2

Mrs. Showalter writes to City Manager C. Francis Driscoll, asking for a report from his office assessing the police department’s handling of the case. She also asks for a reply to her June 4 letter to Police Chief Crowley.

July 9

Driscoll tells Crowley to prepare a complete report for Mrs. Showalter.

July 10

Bucko completes report on fatal accident.

July 25

Driscoll sends Mrs. Showalter Bucko’s report. The report said Mr. Showalter’s body was in the road, but the ambulance crew which took Mr. Showalter to Lawrence Memorial Hospital said they found him on the sidewalk several feet away. No police officer ever saw the body at the scene since the first officer arrived as the body was being placed in the ambulance.

Bucko says paint particles from a 1968 Plymouth at the U.S. Naval Submarine Base in Groton are similar to those found on Mr. Showalter’s clothing, but the same paint is used on any 1968 Chrysler product.

Bucko also says a piece of metal Mrs. Showalter found near the accident scene is in the detective bureau. When Mrs. Showalter first offered the metal to police, they refused to sign a receipt for it.

August 6

Mrs. Showalter writes to Driscoll regarding Bucko’s report. She lists six pages of comments on allegedly “serious omissions” and “strictly opinion judgments” by Bucko.

Mrs. Showalter also writes to Chief State’s Atty. Joseph Gormley, asking him to send a representative to the coroner’s inquest. She includes copies of correspondence with local officials and Bucko’s report.

August 9

Mrs. Showalter requests a meeting with the City Council’s Public Safety Committee.

August 15

Bucko updates report, at request of city manager Driscoll.

Bucko said of the body location, “the position he (Mr. Showalter) was found in at the scene of the accident, in my opinion, would not help in solving this matter.” Erroneous on the report is the position of the car jack which is shown on the front bumper. The car Mr. Showalter was working on, a Ford Pinto, had to be jacked from the side of the vehicle.

Omitted from the report is the location of a car mat seen to the rear of the car and the spare tire Mr. Showalter never got to put on the car.

August 20

Gormley writes to Mrs. Showalter, telling her the local police investigation “has proceeded smoothly,” and there is “no reason for this office to initiate its own investigation.”

August 28

The Public Safety Committee of the New London City Council meets in closed session for one hour to discuss the hit-run death. Chief Crowley requested the closed session. He said there is evidence that could jeopardize future action.

Mrs. Showalter submitted a 12-page statement for the meeting, but did not attend.

Crowley said the case is not closed and it appears an arrest may be made.

August 31

Mallove submits official statement to New London police.

November, 1974

After being postponed several times, the coroner’s inquest hears testimony from 50 persons. No findings issued.

1975

January 24

A state police detective participating in the federal grand jury probe of the city police department has told one of its patrolmen they identified the driver of the car which struck and killed Mr. Showalter on Christmas Eve, 1973.

“We know who killed the Showalter kid, how come you don’t?” the detective was quoted in The Norwich Bulletin as saying.

March 19-22

The Bulletin, in a four-part series, shows:

- Eyewitnesses and what New London police called “near witnesses” drastically differed in their accounts of the accident.

- Microscopic paint particles found on Mr. Showalter’s clothing on which police based their search may not have been left by the vehicle which struck him.

- Evidence entrusted to police officers at the scene has never been seen since.

- A claim by police that it would cost as much as $1,200 to trace vehicles possible involved in the mishap was declared false by the state Motor Vehicle Department.

The Bulletin, when preparing the series of articles, made repeated efforts to discuss the case with police officials but Lt. K.T. Bucko, who headed the case, on the advice of then Police Chief John Crowley, would not.

April 3 State police conduct an extensive door-to-door inquiry in the Pequot Avenue region. State police have been looking into the case as part of a federal grand jury investigation into alleged corruption within the city force.

July 12

The state of Connecticut offers a $2,000 reward for information leading to the arrest and conviction of the person responsible for the hit-run death of Mr. Showalter. A total of $3,000 is now being offered. Classmates and friends of Mr. Showalter’s have already collected $1,000.

July 21

A community effort by friends and classmates raises the reward to $5,000.

November 8

The transcript of the coroner’s inquest of the hit-run death conducted nearly a year ago has yet to be typed, Coroner Joseph Moukawsher confirms. He said he wants to review the transcript even though he believes his six-day long inquest did not establish any guilt in the case. He said he has not spoken with the court reporter assigned to the case since the early summer.

December 10

Mrs. Showalter writes to State’s Atty. C. Robert Satti, requesting a one-man grand jury investigation. No response.

1976

January 6

Satti refuses to confirm or deny the existence of Mrs. Showalter’s request. Mrs. Showalter has also asked Satti’s office to ascertain the location of recorded tapes made during the coroner’s inquest.

January 9

Mrs. Showalter sends a special delivery letter to Satti asking for a response to the December 10 request. No response.

February 19

In a feature article, also carried statewide by the Associated Press, The Bulletin profiles Mrs. Showalter on page one.

Some public officials regard her as a persistent nuisance, someone to be ignored and sidestepped, but Mrs. Lucille M. Showalter will not breathe easily until they tell her who killed her son, Bulletin reporter Fred Vollono wrote.

“The official comment seems to be there is nothing to it,” Mrs. Showalter said. “It is just the ramblings of a grief-stricken mother. But there are many people who urge me to go on. They say, ‘Lucille, if you stop, then nothing will ever be done.’”

February 23

Mrs. Showalter receives a letter of confession from an inmate at Somers state prison. The inmate said he was plagued by news accounts of the death. Every time he seems to forget the accident, the inmate said, he reads another news story.

April 2

Mrs. Showalter submits a third written request to Satti for a grand-jury probe. No response.

May 6

Common Pleas court Prosecutor Harold Dean quashes the only lead in the two and a half year old investigation, The Norwich Bulletin reports. The lead was the letter of confession written by the inmate at Somers Prison. State police arrested the inmate for harassment of the victim’s mother, Mrs. Showalter, to whom the letter was sent. Dean nolled the case and allowed it to be dismissed despite a prior meeting with state police when the significance of the arrest was discussed.

State police did not believe the letter writer was responsible for the hit-run death, but they thought the letter contained possibly significant information. Dean said he was certain the accused had no knowledge of the case, because he was incarcerated when Mr. Showalter was killed.

August 7 The day following the Bulletin’s report of Dean quashing the lead, Chief State’s Atty. Joseph Gormley says he had “no idea” why the lead “which very well could have led to something,” resulted in a dead end. Two state police officers had met with Gormley to discuss the letter of confession.

August 6

State police list the investigation into the killing of Mr. Showalter as “closed pending further development.” That classification came 31 days after Dean threw the harassment case out of court.

August 30

Mrs. Showalter again asks Superior Court Judge Angelo Santaniello to call for a one-man grand jury probe.

September 1

Mrs. Showalter publicly renews her efforts to have a one-man grand jury reopen the investigation into the hit-run killing of her son. In a statement sent to 22 media outlets, Mrs. Showalter says she made the appeal in an August 30 letter to Superior Court Judge Angelo Santaniello. She says she was asking the judge to “make good on a promise” he made to her in June 1974. Santaniello wrote in a June 24, 1974 letter, Superior Court intercession would be possible if the investigation required it.

Santaniello said, “probably the proper person” to approach would be State’s Atty. C. Robert Satti. But Mrs. Showalter said she is ignoring Satti because he failed to respond to her December 1975 letter asking for the grand jury.

September 23

State’s Atty. C. Robert Satti says he needs another three weeks to review information on the killing of Mr. Showalter before deciding whether the investigation should be reopened or shelved.

Satti says he had hoped to have the matter resolved by today, but the sinking of his 35-foot cabin cruiser two weeks ago, an unexpected report of crimes by New London police, and a new trial forced him behind schedule.

November 23

Mrs. Showalter turns to Governor Ella T. Grasso for help.

“I cannot endure this loss of a beloved son in the midst of a governmental system that appears to neither act nor care,” Mrs. Showalter says in a letter to the governor.

Mrs. Showalter says she is skeptical the New London County State’s Attorney’s review of the case will result in the one-man grand jury she has requested. Satti today said he is still reviewing transcripts of the Coroner’s Inquest and refused further comment.

December 21

Just three days before the third anniversary of the killing of Kevin B. Showalter, the state’s chief court administrator orders the city’s only unsolved hit-and-run case reopened.

John P. Cotter signs an order creating a one-man jury to probe the death, renewing hopes that allegations of police bungling and mishandling of the case will be settled.

“I can’t yet believe it,” says Mrs. Showalter, calling the action a “literal miracle.”

Cotter, a justice on the state Supreme Court, selects retired Superior Court Judge Raymond J. Devlin to head the one-man grand jury.

An attorney representing Mrs. Lucille M. Showalter also files a $600,000 lawsuit against the unnamed person(s) responsible for the killing of her son. Atty. Averum J. Sprecher of East Haddam says the suit is aimed at protecting Mrs. Showalter’s rights.

“The action as I have filed it will definitively preserve her rights when the investigative bodies finally determine who killed the boy,” he said. The suit is aimed at heading off fears the state’s statute of limitations might preclude Mrs. Showalter from pursuing civil action if the killer is found.

December 24

Superior Court Judge Joseph F. Dannehy is ordered to replace State Referee Raymond J. Devlin as the one-man grand juror investigating Mr. Showalter’s death. Chief Court Administrator John P. Cotter says Judge Devlin had asked to be taken off the case because he was too busy with other duties, and would be unable to commute from his New Haven office.

1977

January 4

Austin J. McGuigan, the special prosecutor assigned to the one-man grand jury probing the hit-run death of Mr. Showalter promises to pull “all the stops” in his investigation but says he needs help from the public to succeed.

McGuigan has worked for the state for two years as the top investigator of organized crime. He appeals to anyone with information to call him confidentially.

February 8

State Police Commissioner Edward P. Leonard, as part of a last-resort effort, makes a personal appeal to area residents for information about the killing of Mr. Showalter. In a letter to the people who live near the Pequot Avenue site where Mr. Showalter died, Leonard asks for facts – “No matter how insignificant they may appear” – which might shed light on the car, the driver or the accident scene.

Special Prosecutor McGuigan says police “had no suspects.” However, he says if a suspect is found police believe there is sufficient evidence to tie the person to the case.

April 18

Investigators say they feel confident the Showalter case will be solved.

The new optimism comes after a public appeal netted more than 300 leads, new laboratory analysis of existing evidence, and an accounting of each of the more than 10,000 green Chrysler products registered in Eastern Connecticut when Mr. Showalter was killed.

The new evidence means “there is a significant possibility the vehicle in question was not a green Chrysler,” Special Prosecutor Austin McGuigan says. While the investigators will not say what other color the car might have been, the evidence apparently opens new avenues for the investigation. Previously, other theories on who drove the death car, theories which have had some substantiation, were locked into the green Chrysler theory, police acknowledge.

May 10

State police investigators spend two and a half hours recreating and filming the Pequot Avenue death scene where Mr. Showalter was the victim of the hit and run.

May 18

State police again film and re-create death scene.

June 22

The Bulletin reports that one of the most intensive investigations in state police history, the probe into Mr. Showalter’s hit-run death, will be given to a one-man grand jury July 5 in Windham county Superior Court.

Judge Joseph F. Dannehy, the grand juror, imposes a gag order on all investigators assigned to the case. Special Prosecutor McGuigan and 17 state police detectives had gathered evidence for the grand jury.

June 23

More than 50 persons will be subpoenaed and the scope of the probe will be expanded to include subsequent actions connected with the accident, The Bulletin reports.

June 24

Eleven New London police officers, including the top detective involved in the first of three investigations of the hit-run death, have been subpoenaed, The Bulletin reports.

July 5

The grand jury begins behind closed doors with testimony by New London Det. Lt. Konstanty T. Bucko.

Outside, a television camera crew drips with sweat under the glare of a hot summer sun.

Inside it is quiet and cool – almost like any other day. The state police detectives and reporters talk about golf, baseball and other summertime activities. Because of the gag order imposed by Judge Dannehy, they can’t talk about what is most on their minds, what has brought them all together – the unsolved hit-run death of Kevin B. Showalter.

The session lasts about five hours and also includes testimony by Mrs. Showalter and Debra Emilyta, Mr. Showalter’s companion the night he died.

Ms. Emilyta has been sitting on a wall about 6 feet from Mr. Showalter when he was killed. She told police she only heard the 20-year-old Mitchell College student struck, and did not see the car which struck him.

July 6

Witnesses include Michael Buscetto of Mike’s Arco in New London. What he identified as body putty, apparently from the car that struck and killed Mr. Showalter, has never been seen since police officers placed it in an envelope that night, according to sources.

Ms. Emilyta concludes testimony.

Also testifying are Dr. Robert Weller, members of his family, and a friend, who while returning home from church drove past Mr. Showalter as he was changing the tire. They were among the last persons to see Mr. Showalter alive.

Other witnesses include Mrs. Ruth P. Hendel and Mrs. Charles (Shirley Pope) Alloway, her daughter.

On Christmas Eve, 1973, Mrs. Hendel had just turned away from the window of her home on Pequot Avenue where she had been watching Mr. Showalter work on the Emilyta car. She heard the noise of the car striking Mr. Showalter and turning back quickly she caught a glimpse of the taillights. Her first impression of the fleeing southbound car was that it was bright-colored, possibly red.

Mrs. Hendel continued to watch the accident scene as she telephoned Mrs. Alloway, the wife of a New London police officer.

Arthur Adams of New London, a Mitchell College security guard and former state policeman, also testifies. Aside from Ms. Emilyta and the hit-run driver, Adams may have been one of the last persons to see Mr. Showalter alive.

Adams saw Mr. Showalter working on the car and Ms. Emilyta sitting on the stone wall, swinging her legs. He observed the girl with a coat collar wrapped around her head, in conversation with Mr. Showalter, after the Weller party had driven by.

Adams continued on his rounds towards the Montauk Avenue side of the campus. Sometime after 11 p.m., he saw an ambulance heading for the hospital and two police cars heading down Plant Street.

July 7

Some of the last persons who saw Mr. Showalter alive and one of the first who saw him dead testify.

Six members of the Sitty family, who were celebrating Christmas Eve and occasionally watching Mr. Showalter change a tire from inside a house on Pequot Avenue, tell the grand jury what they knew about the case, Edmond Sitty had brought out a blanket and a corduroy coat to put over Mr. Showalter’s body after he had been struck and killed.

A New London High School classmate of Mr. Showalter, Arthur Petrini, was a passenger in a car that passed the accident scene sometime after Mr. Showalter was killed and before the ambulance and police arrived. He also testified.

July 12

Witnesses included two firemen and a dispatcher, two nurses and an orderly, the New London County Medical Examiner, the first man to officially identify Mr. Showalter, and a woman who lives near the accident scene.

Larry Grimes, a security guard who knew Mr. Showalter from Mitchell College, had made the preliminary identification at Lawrence and Memorial Hospitals, where he also worked. Mrs. Dorothy Bryson of Pequot Avenue, who came upon the accident scene, also testifies.

July 13

New London police officers pack the waiting room of the Windham County Courthouse. Of the 11 who were subpoenaed last month, at least seven are present.

The 11 include Patrolmen Vincent McGrath, Steven Colonis, Thomas P. Bowes Jr., and Cpl. Joseph Chiapponne, all of whom were involved in the initial investigation. With the change of shift, Sgt. Joseph Jullarine, Patrolmen Richard West and Glenn Davis and Det. Sgt. Konstanty T. Bucko joined the probe. Bucko was off duty at the time.

McGrath filed the motor vehicle report of the accident and the sketch on the report was by Bowes. Bucko took photographs of the scene and gathered evidence. His photographs may be the only ones taken. Bucko also went to the hospital and got the victim’s clothing, according to sources.

Colonis, the first officer on the scene, apparently arrived as Mr. Showalter was being placed in the ambulance. He interviewed Ms. Emilyta and took her to the station to file a 13-sentence statement.

There is some confusion of whether Colonis drove an unmarked police car that night. Sources say police made conflicting statements on that question.

July 14

Thomas Wainwright, who played tennis with Kevin Showalter at New London High, saw his lifeless body on a sidewalk on Pequot Avenue before an ambulance or police arrived, and is among those testifying today. Arthur Petrini, who testified last week, was a passenger in Wainwright’s car.

Mr. and Mrs. Donald Wainwright, who were stopped by police after circling the scene in another auto, also testify.

At least seven New London police officers are at the courthouse, but it is not known how many are testifying.

July 19

The grand jury shifts beyond reconstructions by “near witnesses,” as Sgt. Joseph Jullarine, now retired, testifies. He was the squad leader who reportedly conducted “an intensive investigation” for a red car during the 11:30 p.m. to 7:30 a.m. shift on Christmas Day 1973.

July 20

The grand jury investigators spend much of the day alone reviewing physical evidence and testimony. Only three witnesses – New London police who have already appeared during the proceedings – are present.

July 21

Det. Bucko appears for at least the fourth time in the nine days the grand jury has convened. The session begins at 10 a.m. and ends about 5:45 p.m., with his departure.

A nurse’s aide who knelt by Mr. Showalter’s body, feeling for a pulse, also testifies, Sue Costello, who heard the report of an accident as she was leaving Lawrence and Memorial Hospitals in New London from her shift, had arrived on the scene before ambulance personnel and police.

July 26

The scope of the grand jury probe goes beyond Mr. Showlater’s death and runs smack into a crucial area of dispute with the appearance of New London police detective Walter Petchark.

On Christmas Day 1973, with evidence already missing and news of Mr. Showalter’s death on the radio, Petchark reportedly received a call from former mayor Harvey N. Mallove. Mallove later told The Bulletin there was no truth to the report. But he allegedly told Petchark he thought he saw the accident the night before.

Three city police detectives – Bucko, Petchark, and Carmello Fazzina – were present at the inquiry. They were followed by laboratory technicians from the FBI, who lent their expertise in the analysis of headlight glass possibly belonging to the death vehicle.

July 27

The former counsel for the estate of Mr. Showalter testifies. Atty. Thomas Bishop confirms his representation of the estate was severed in June 1974.

Thomas and Donald Wainwright return for further testimony.

July 28

Witnesses include Mrs. S.F. Zimet of Ledyard. Mallove said he was visiting at her home on Christmas Eve 1973, left about 10:45 p.m., and was home in New London about half an hour later.

Mrs. Zimet is accompanied by her attorney, L. Patrick Gray. Gray, like Bishop, is a member of the New London law firm Suissman, Shapiro, Wool, and Brennan.

Other witnesses include New London city Manager C. Francis Driscoll and Elise Mallove, Mallove’s daughter. Miss Mallove was home for her Christmas vacation in 1973.

The grand jury begins a four-week recess. More than 50 persons were called during the first 12 days of the inquiry.

August 30

New London police investigators and a newspaper editor who has followed their unsolved hit-run death case for three years are among the witnesses.

Retired Police Chief John Crowley and Det. Lt. K.T. Bucko, who refused repeated pleas by The Bulletin in March of 1975 to discuss the death of Kevin B. Showalter, gives testimony – as did the paper’s managing editor, John C. Peterson.

Peterson testifies for three hours.

August 31

The attorney who conducted a coroner’s inquest into Mr. Showalter’s death, the results of which have never met public scrutiny, is the first witness today. Atty. Joseph Moukwasher, who heard testimony from 50 witnesses during six days in September and November of 1974, is one of the few persons familiar with the substance of that investigation.

It took more than two years for the transcripts of the hearings to be typed and submitted to State’s Atty. C. Robert Satti.

State Police Sgt. Donald Crouch, who in 1974 and 1975 worked for the federal grand jury investigating alleged corruption in the New London force, also testifies. Other witnesses included Rosemary Benson and Carol James.

September 1

Physical exhibits appear to outnumber witnesses in the 15th day of proceedings. Two state police technicians from the crime lab in Bethany carry satchels concealing evidence into the closed courtroom. One exhibit is a light colored automobile fender, which was dented and streaked.

September 2

Det. Edward Pickett of the New London County State’s Attorney’s office, who helped administer a lie detector test to Ms. Emilyta, testifies. Ms. Emilyta passed the test.

Another detective, private investigator Joe Harris, is also called. A former Waterford police sergeant, he worked on the case for a brief time, on his own.

Other witnesses in a short session include State Police Sgt. Charles Trotter, a principal investigator in the federal grand jury probe of the New London city police.

September 12

Two persons who saw Mr. Showalter on Christmas Eve 1973, hours before he was killed testify.

Ramona Ricci, a coworker of Mr. Showalter’s at a Waterford discotheque, attended one of two parties Mr. Showalter had planned to go to after work that night. Nancy Wicksham, who also testified, had joined friends that holiday evening at the club.

September 18

Mallove says his status as a suspect in the case is “nothing new.” During testimony in a New Jersey courtroom, Connecticut State Police revealed Mallove is a prime suspect in the hit-run case. The testimony concerned refusal by two New Jersey men to comply with a subpoena issued by the one-man grand jury. Trooper Charles Wargat also testified he was told the two men repaired Mallove’s car on Christmas Eve or Christmas Day 1973.

Mallove tells The Bulletin he did not know the men and never had a car repaired at their shop on Reed Street in New London. He says he didn’t kill Mr. Showalter and doesn’t know anything about anybody who did.

September 19

One of the two men who testified with immunity today has said in a published account he has no knowledge of the case and denied any car was repaired in his New London shop on Christmas Eve 1973.

Walter String Jr. made those comments in the New Jersey Courier Post. He and his son, Walter String III, had been ordered to appear today by a New Jersey judge, after refusing to comply with a subpoena.

Among the dozen or so witnesses are New London city police Sgt. Donald Sloan and Cpl. Charles Alloway. They took the first full statement from Ms. Emilyta, five days after the accident.

September 26

Darlene Barnes, a friend of Mr. Showalter who patronized the Waterford discotheque where he worked, is among the witnesses today. Ms. Barnes was also one of the 50 witnesses during the coroner’s inquest of 1974.

October 3

Larry Grimes testifies again. The Mitchell College security guard who made the first identification of Mr. Showalter at Lawrence and Memorial Hospitals, was also at the courthouse on July 12, and Sept. 26.

The grand jury will be in recess until October 17. It has convened 20 times since July 5 and heard about 90 witnesses.

October 11

Judge Dannehy says published reports that Mallove is a prime suspect in the case “couldn’t bother me in the least.”

“They (the newspapers) are free to speculate if they wish,” Dannehy says. “I am not concerned with their claimed right to freedom of expression.

I think that sometimes their attitude is to publish and be damned, but they don’t bother me.”

“Why don’t you wait” for the grand jury report? Dannehy asked.

October 17

The sales manager of a New London auto firm who said he has sold a number of cars to the family of a suspect in the hit-run case testifies.

In 1970, Peter Emmanuel Sr. of New London Motors sold a Lincoln Continental to Harvey N. Mallove, whom state police have identified as a suspect in the Christmas Eve, 1973 death. A compact car was among the other autos the New London firm sold to Mallove.

State police were looking for a green Chrysler product when they first questioned New London motors personnel, Emmanuel said before he testified. But the firm didn’t sell Mallove such a vehicle, which police had believed was the death car, he added.

October 24

The grand jury does not convene today because the investigators were not ready to proceed, Judge Dannehy said. He said he plans to conduct several more sessions before adjourning to write the final report, but did not specify.

November 14

The grand jury meets for its first regular session since October 17 and hears one witness. The witness, Gary Jordan of New London, said he was dating Elise Mallove on Christmas Eve 1973.

Sources say the grand jury conducted at least one special session since October 17, but it was not known who testified.

November 21

State police continue working long and irregular hours probing Mr. Showalter’s death as they re-create the hit-run scene on Pequot Avenue near Plant Street for at least the third time.

November 29

The man whom state police have said they consider a prime suspect in New London’s only unsolved hit-run death has his day in court.

Harvey N. Mallove testifies for about four hours before the secret grand jury probing Mr. Showalter’s death. Atty. Leo J. McNamara accompanies Mallove to the Windham County Courthouse.

Mallove says he was one of a number of persons who drove by the accident scene shortly before or after Mr. Showalter was killed. But a four-part series by The Bulletin in March of 1975 showed Mallove saw a scene that seven other persons said could not have taken place.

Mallove passed the accident scene within a minute or two after an ambulance call was logged. His statement to New London police – dated eight months later – conflicts with accounts of seven persons at the scene or looking out their windows seconds after Mr. Showalter was struck.

Mr. Showalter was struck by a car as he changed a tire on a friend’s parked Ford Pinto, on a well-lit section of Pequot Avenue near Plant Street.

In his statement, Mallove said he saw an automobile parked at an angle in front of the Pinto. None of the seven persons saw any car stopped at the scene immediately after the victim was hit according to the July 10, 1974 report by New London Det. Lt. Konstanty T. Bucko.

Mallove’s vivid description of a middle-aged man talking with a girl near the car also conflicts with statements by the seven persons.

In his statement, Mallove said he assumed the man was a member of the police department. But Bucko claims in the July 10 report that Mallove told him the talking to the girl was “NOT” a policeman.

Bucko’s report also claims Mallove learned on Christmas Day 1974 that “a man had been killed and he remarked to some people that he saw the body.” But Bucko continued to report that after Mallove viewed photographs of the scene he realized what he mistook for a body was a floor mat. In his statement, Mallove said he saw a “flat object which I assumed was a blanket or a mat.”

In his August 31, 1974 statement, Mallove said, “Seeing no trouble, accident, or any evidence of anything out of place…I continued on my way home.”

In the July 10, 1974 report, Bucko claims; “Mr. Mallove stated he was going to stop because he realized there had been an accident.”

Mallove has told The Bulletin that Bucko misquoted him.

December 7

The calling of witnesses ends with Mallove’s second appearance.

The proceedings included a film screening, apparently of the death scene as re-created by state police.

After the 35 minute screening, Special Prosecutor McGuigan and Judge Dannehy questioned Mallove for about 40 minutes. That was the bulk of the afternoon session.

The question of whether indictments should be handed down in New London’s only unsolved hit-run death now rests with Judge Dannehy.

After 24 sessions and more than 100 witnesses, Dannehy said the next step for the grand jury is the final report on who killed Kevin B. Saltwater.

1978

Feb. 17 Report filed.

Feb. 22

Report made public.

  • THE DANNEHY REPORT


  • SHOWALTER COVERUP COLUMNS

    Chapter 1

    Law and Justice in Everyday Life

    Cover-Up In New London

    Hit-And-Run Continues To Mock Justice


    Sept. 4, 2000

    If Connecticut Chief State’s Attorney John Bailey wants to bring closure to cold cases, here’s one from New London that should top the list: The Showalter hit-and-run cover-up is a dark chapter in Connecticut history, a tale more appropriate for a Third World country.

    And yet, only one thing bothers former New London County State’s Attorney C. Robert Satti about the Showalter case: that it was investigated at all.

    Satti, now retired, made the point again and again, most recently this year. Satti’s complaint, made during the wake of the late state police Detective George Ryalls, was that Ryalls’ obituary mentioned the suspect the prosecutor refused to pursue in the Showalter probe.

    Kevin B. Showalter, a 20-year-old Mitchell College student, was killed at 11:12 p.m. on Christmas Eve 1973. He was changing a tire on a well-lit section of Pequot Avenue on the New London shoreline when he was struck and killed. His girlfriend, sitting only 6 feet away on a stone wall, claims she saw nothing.

    Auto body putty from the death car disappeared after a tow truck driver gave it to New London police. The evidence file that was supposed to contain the putty was stuffed with bathroom tiles. The file that was supposed to contain headlight glass from the death car instead contained glass from three different headlights. State police and others suspected that, in order to throw legitimate investigators off the trail, the late young man's clothing was pounded on a different-colored car than the one that killed him.

    The victim's mother, Lucille M. Showalter, tried to get a grand jury investigation of the cover-up. She was rebuffed repeatedly by the presiding judge, Angelo Santaniello who, it later became clear, was best friends with the leading suspect. Santaniello then referred Showalter to prosecutor Satti, who happened to be his former law partner. Satti refused to acknowledge registered letters from Mrs. Showalter pleading for a grand jury probe.

    Satti did finally meet with Mrs. Showalter in 1978, after Judge Joseph Dannehy of Willimantic, acting as a one-man grand jury, named former New London Mayor Harvey N. Mallove as the probable driver of the hit-run vehicle. Satti called the three-hour meeting, in which he repeatedly told Mrs. Showalter that there never should have been a grand jury investigation under Dannehy.

    Mallove held a good hand; he had the best legal muscle in New London County on his side. New London police would not question him for more than seven months, and then only in a perfunctory manner. They would say they inspected his cars, but they did not. Significantly, Mallove’s Lincoln had been repaired, but it wasn’t until state police took over the case four years after the accident that the fender was finally seized.

    Santaniello would arrange for a coroner’s inquest and put his niece in charge of typing the transcript. Only after two years of intense public pressure would the transcript be typed. But the inquest never issued a finding.

    Santaniello tipped off Mallove that he was a suspect. The judge was also aware of what local police knew about the case. Mrs. Showalter memorialized the admissions in tape-recorded telephone conversations.

    “I did talk to Harvey,” Santaniello told Mrs. Showalter on Oct. 17, 1975, “and I said, `You’re suspected.’ As a matter of fact, at that time a police officer came to him on the same day or the next day, and told him you were making accusations about him and that he was a prime suspect.” The day before, Mallove told Mrs. Showalter, “Judge Santaniello is of the opinion that you fingered me.”

    It was not until 1977 that state police, who took over the case at the behest of former Gov. Ella Grasso, formally named Mallove a suspect. Next week, I'll propose a means to solve the Showalter cover-up.

    Showalter Cover-Up Is New London's Shame

    Sept. 11, 2000

    New London, where I grew up and began working in the 1960s and ‘70s, was a dirty little city with character.

    It had a restaurant called the Hygienic that was everything but. There were at least a couple bars where the cops couldn't do anything, except maybe a little business.

    The top pimp in town never went to jail until he was about 60 and a certain court official retired.

    New London will always be the city that tried to cover up the Christmas Eve 1973 hit-and-run death of Kevin B. Showalter. It's been doing a pretty good job for nearly 27 years, but the onion is beginning to peel.

    The local daily newspaper admitted -- in its official history published this year -- that it did a shoddy job on the Showalter case. Specifically, The Day admitted its failure to explore the relationship between a former mayor and a top judge, and their influence on the course of the criminal investigation. That’s a beginning.

    Political and police corruption goes back a couple generations in New London. By the 1970s, New London police were widely known to be involved in the selling of women, dope and refrigerators, among other things. A federal grand jury took note. But as with the Showalter case, there were these little problems with the evidence.

    A jewelry store owner and former city mayor multi-millionaire Harvey Mallove was the prime suspect in the hit-and-run death of Showalter, a student at Mitchell College. Showalter’s date that night, Christmas Eve 1973, said she saw nothing from her vantage point six feet away, sitting on a stone wall under a streetlight on a residential street as a young man changed the tire of her car.

    Harvey was everybody’s pal. He would take kids to the Super Bowl, then, down the road, get them jobs as cops. He was friends with bums in the street and bums in high political office. He was wired. The standing joke among reporters became: Harvey's a great guy to have a beer with, just don't change your tire if he's driving by.

    “I didn't kill the kid in any way, shape or form,” Harvey told me many times. As mayor, Harvey helped hire a few police chiefs. His best friend was the administrative judge for the county; that was the judge who controlled the early stages of the investigation, specifically a coroner’s inquest that never issued a finding.

    State police followed up a report that Mallove’s best friend, County Administrative Judge Angelo G. Santaniello, was with Mallove on Christmas Eve 1973. Santaniello reportedly was No. 11 on a guest list for a party at the home of his political mentor, the late state Sen. Peter Mariani. The Mariani party was one of two Mallove attended that night.

    Santaniello told reporters he never went out on Christmas Eve.

    Another state judge, Joseph F. Dannehy, conducted two grand jury investigations. In 1978, Dannehy named Mallove as the probable driver of the hit-run vehicle, but said evidence that might have ensured conviction was either mishandled or destroyed.

    Mallove died a few years ago with this legacy. Others still have time to come clean and tell the truth about the cover-up. Mrs. Showalter tried unsuccessfully to have Satti, Santaniello and others prosecuted for hindrance of prosecution (CGS Section 53a-166) warning of impending discovery, providing means of avoiding discovery, preventing discovery by deception. Because a conspiracy to hinder prosecution is an ongoing crime, those with information could tell Chief State's Attorney John Bailey, who has begun an initiative to solve some of the state's cold homicide cases.

    Isn’t it time? No one kept the system honest when it counted, though some tried. Most stood by as the system that was supposed to protect the victim and his family betrayed them all.

    Where is the conscience of the community?

    Cold Case On Ice Forever

    Nov. 6, 2000

    One way to deflect attention from a suspect is to get investigators involved in meaningless, time-consuming tasks. Another way is to create a bogus suspect who is then exposed as such, causing a belief that the case is just too hazy to pursue.

    Both of these devices were used repeatedly in the cover-up of the Showalter hit-run case in New London. Whether this was happenstance, indifference, incompetence or malfeasance, the result was the same. The system failed.

    And now, it seems, the truth will remain buried forever.

    Judge Joseph F. Dannehy, the grand juror who investigated the case, wrote in his finding of fact: “After December 25, 1973, the New London Police Department did virtually nothing to solve the hit-run death of Kevin B. Showalter.” The accident occurred the night before.

    Local police and court officials, however, were pro-active in another sense. Their actions served to protect the assailant.

    For example, New London police claimed it would cost as much as $1,200 to trace vehicles using data from the state Motor Vehicle Department. The motor vehicle department declared there was no such charge.

    Nevertheless, New London police spent their time hand-sorting local motor vehicle cards. They looked for a green Chrysler. That was likely a false lead; state police said paint particles found on the victim's clothing did not come from the car that killed him.

    Former Mayor Harvey Mallove began meeting informally with police and court officials as early as Dec. 25, 1973. Mallove wanted to know what the police knew.

    The only lead after two and a half years was quashed by then New London Common Pleas Court Prosecutor Harold Dean in May 1976. The lead was a letter of confession written by a Somers prison inmate to the victim’s mother, Lucille Showalter.

    “I told Harold how important that was to me,” Mallove, the prime suspect, confided to an associate. He also acknowledged discussing the purported confession with his best friend, the presiding judge for the county, Angelo Santaniello.

    The author of the letter was known to be connected with “fences,” or purveyors of stolen goods in the New London area. State police arrested him for harassment of Mrs. Showalter. Two state troopers met with Dean for an hour. They told him the letter contained possibly significant information. State police also believed they could connect the dots in New London between the letter writer and the powers-that-be. Did he owe some favors? Was he paid? Police knew the author had no liability for the accident; he was actually in Florida at the time of the hit-run.

    Dean nolled and dismissed the case without telling the troopers or Mallove. Soon thereafter, state police listed the killing of Showalter as “closed pending further development.” Upon learning of Dean's action, Chief State's Attorney Joseph Gormley remarked he had “no idea” why the lead, “which very well could have led to something,” resulted in a dead end. The case would remain closed for six months, until Gov. Ella Grasso brought the matter to Justice John Cotter.

    Was there criminal activity connected with the Showalter cover-up? It appears we will never know for certain. Dannehy named Mallove as the probable driver, noting that evidence which might have ensured conviction was destroyed. The Chief State’s Attorney’s Office reviewed aspects of the case this fall after a series of columns appeared in The Law Tribune. However, the statute of limitations for the most likely potential charge, conspiracy to hinder prosecution of motor vehicle misconduct, has expired. This shameful case, it appears, is destined to stay on ice forever.

    - AND:

    Olympic Gold for Missing Evidence


    November 28, 2005

    Judge Ellen Gordon was in way over her head with what she tried pass off as a ruling in Day Publishing v. State's Attorney.

    Clueless Gordon was handed a hot one, a case no one has ever wanted in the so-called New London Judicial District. Every single time this case has come to court, begging for justice, The Robes, the prosecutors and their minions have either desecrated their oaths or looked the other way. Clueless Gordon, fairly new to the scene, has managed to join the list of those who are both ostriches and failures.

    The Day newspaper asked Gordon this year to release the grand jury testimony regarding the cover-up of the 1973 hit-run death of Kevin Showalter. Before Gordon probably ever heard of Showalter, five New London County judges recused themselves from a John Doe civil suit against the driver because they were friends with the prime suspect, Harvey Mallove. Mallove -- the late mayor of New London and multimillionaire jeweler who picked police chiefs, planned to run for Congress and starred in the social scene -- was prone to say, "I never killed the kid -- in any way, shape or form."

    It's not like we could expect a New London judge to show guts or brains in this case. Compelling testimony from the first of two grand juries implicated local law enforcement and court officials in a widespread cover-up.

    On Christmas Eve 1973 at 11:12 p.m., as the call came in, a high-ranking New London officer, said, "F--k him, he's dead," and then left to go home. Showalter, a 20-year-old Mitchell College student, lay dead on a well-lit section of Pequot Avenue by the shoreline. His body was thrown 22 feet from the point of impact. His shoes were found 110 feet apart. A leg bone was 75 feet away.

    A tow truck driver gave police auto body putty from the death car. The putty was never seen again. New London police mixed headlight glass from at least three different cars in what they called the evidence file. Replacing the auto body putty was bathroom tile. A local coroner's inquest never issued a finding. State police, who took over the case at the behest of Gov. Ella Grasso, were bewildered and angry when they could not find the transcript of the coroner's inquest. Mallove's best friend -- the presiding judge for the county, Angelo G. Santaniello -- had put his niece in charge of typing that transcript. Santaniello also tipped off Mallove to his status as a suspect.

    Now, Clueless Gordon can't find the 3,000-page transcript of the first grand jury. Does she care? Court clerks allegedly performed a diligent search. Would any reasonable person believe or accept any of this?

    Among the last persons known to possess the grand jury report was the late State's Attorney, C. Robert Satti. Satti, who refused to investigate the case before a special prosecutor was appointed, claimed he returned a copy to the grand juror, then Willimantic Superior Court Judge (later Supreme Court Justice) Joseph Dannehy. Both Dannehy and Satti are dead. Did "Do Nothing Bob" -- Mallove's moniker for Satti -- take it with him? We might as well ask Harvey, also dead, or Kevin.

    Gordon's pathetic decision, dated Nov. 7, went on for about a sentence before its first fatal error. It might sound like a technical error, but it's much, much more than that. She actually said New London police investigated the case.

    Before this, I thought it might take generations to remove the stench from the New London courthouse. Alas, for New London, the stench of this cover-up is forever.


    Find & Open
    the Showalter File

  • Hartford Courant Editorial








  • more COOL JUSTICE








  •            Mandatory Reporting Law on Sexual Abuse Not So Mandatory -- Especially for Prep Schools / Abysmal Failures Noted on So-Called Background Checks        

    NEW:
    Mandatory Reporting [NOT Really] Column
    on Sexual Abuse Cases Generates Range of Comments


    Meriden Record-Journal Post 7-18-17 Follows Hearst CT [links below]
    & Cool Justice Blog 6-4-17


  • Column via Record-Journal

  • Facebook Tag Leads to Comments




  • State Reports Only 14 Arrests & Four Convictions in Past Seven Years
    Statute of Limitations Just One Year for This Misdemeanor








    By Andy Thibault
    The Cool Justice Report
    http://cooljustice.blogspot.com/
    June 4, 2017









    Editor's Note: This column may be reprinted or re-posted courtesy of The Cool Justice Report http://cooljustice.blogspot.com.

    Connecticut has been a very safe place to avoid arrest and prosecution for failing to report sexual abuse -- especially if you're a teacher or administrator at a prep school.

    That's just part of the picture.

    Suppose you lose your teaching job after being accused of rape. Just don't put that job on your resume. You'll be fine for perhaps a decade or more. It also helps to amend your full name on the resume. Supposed background checks will fail to detect resume gaps and irregularities.

    But what about that mandatory reporting law compelling teachers and administrators to report suspected abuse to the state? No problem. It hasn't been enforced with any great enthusiasm at the preps: No report, no warning for future employers or victims.

    The revelations come after a series of articles by The Boston Globe Spotlight Team and an investigation by the powerhouse law firm Covington & Burling for Choate Rosemary Hall in Wallingford. The Globe found that abuse victims routinely suffered retaliation at private schools in New England. The schools in turn covered up the abuse. Choate, for example, failed to report abuse incidents prior to 2010.

    A spokeswoman for Connecticut courts told The Cool Justice Report there were just 14 arrests in the state for failing to report sexual abuse from January 2010 through late April 2017. During the same time, there were only four convictions, according to the data provided via the state Judicial Department. One of the convictions was of a day care operator. No additional data was available immediately.

    There is only a one-year statute of limitations for failure to report sexual abuse claims, and that crime is a misdemeanor. Connecticut Deputy Chief State's Attorney Len Boyle said in a statement there are no plans to try to change that, but he noted there is a five-year statute of limitations for a felony charge if prosecutors are able to cite willfulness or other aggravating factors. Willfulness, like intent, carries with it a significant burden of proof.

    "The one-year statute of limitations," Boyle said, "is largely consistent with the limitations periods for all crimes (i.e.: one year for a misdemeanor and five years for a felony). We have not sought to lengthen it. The more egregious cases of failure to report (willfulness, gross negligence, etc.) are felonies and provide a five year limitations period."

    Boyle's office is investigating whether anyone at Choate broke the law by failing to report suspected abuse, The Hartford Courant reported in April.

    Among the 12 teachers accused of abuse in the Choate report, one went on to become a teacher and administrator at several public schools in Connecticut. He was able to avoid detection partly by amending his name and omitting two teaching jobs at private schools -- Choate and The Gunnery, in Washington, CT -- on his resume. The resume, obtained under Connecticut's Freedom of Information law, also shows some overlap for jobs at public schools in Connecticut and New York.

    This teacher / administrator, Jaime E. Rivera, aka Jaime Rivera-Murillo, resigned as principal of Wamogo High School in Litchfield in April. Before that, he was a teacher and assistant principal at Newtown High School for about 11 years. The first teaching job listed on his resume was at Henry Abbot Technical High School in Danbury, beginning in 2001. That leaves a seven-year gap following his graduation from St. Michael's College in Vermont, where he reported earning a Bachelor of Arts in Teaching English as a Second Language.

    The Covington & Burling report says Rivera-Murillo was fired after being accused of anally raping one student and grabbing the breast of another during a Choate field trip to Costa Rica in 1999. Rivera, a faculty leader for the trip, denied engaging in sexual misconduct but admitting drinking alcohol including beer with students and "local moonshine" with others.

    Choate did not report the alleged assaults at the time as required by law. The alleged rape victim told the Covington & Burling team that a female administrator admonished students not to discuss what happened.

    The process for vetting resumes at Connecticut public schools like Wamogo and Newtown high schools and Abbot Tech seems to be check the boxes and wave the guy through with barely a pretense of scrutiny. This abysmal failure of diligence and critical thinking should be alarming to students, parents and all taxpayers.

    "He didn't list Choate as a former employer when he applied," Christine Chinni, the lawyer for Regional District 6 which includes Wamogo, told The Boston Globe.

    District 6 Superintendent Edward Drapp, asked about the committee of 12 that reviewed Rivera-Murillo's credentials and the review process, declined to discuss his procedures for background checks. Besides the resume, which he produced after a formal FOI request, Drapp was also asked to provide documents related to that review committee. Here is Drapp's response: "Attached is a copy of Mr. Rivera's resume. This is the only document in the district's possession that meets the criteria of your FOI request. For the remainder of the school year I will be focused on the students and therefore I am not doing any additional interviews or making any other statements on this matter."

    Drapp's response sounds like the result of bad coaching from an inept lawyer. The assertion that there are no documents regarding the review committee is not credible. Are we to believe the review committee never had a meeting?

    The Globe reported in April that the sexual misconduct at Choate occurred from 1963 to 2010 and ranged from intimate kissing to groping and sexual intercourse. The Covington & Burling report cites 12 teachers. Other Globe stories cited more than 100 private schools in New England with more than 300 former students saying they faced sexual abuse or harassment.

    Just last month, The Kent School was sued and accused of failing to report a 49-year-old teacher who had sex with a 15-year-old student in the late 1980s.

    The student claims her advisor scolded her for spreading vicious rumors. Another teacher allegedly told the student she was a sinner for committing adultery. The suit claims the abuse was widely known at the school and that the student was shunned, called "obviously crazy" and blamed for the teacher's breakdown. During a church service the student attended at the school, the suit asserts, Kent staff openly prayed for the teacher's well being. The teacher subsequently got a job at a private school in Indiana.

    Kent School, founded in 1906, charges more than $60,000 annually for tuition, board and fees.

    Rev. Richardson Schell, the headmaster, said in a statement: "We do not know why [the student] has elected to pursue a lawsuit at this time."

    Schell opened the statement by saying he had reviewed the complaint: " ... I am deeply sorry for the wrongful actions of the former Kent teacher who engaged in an inappropriate relationship with this former student ... as the Headmaster of the school then, I responded immediately and to the best of my ability."

    The statement does not address the school's duty to report the alleged abuse in a timely manner.

    Notably, Schell undertook a massive letter writing campaign some years later when he was annoyed by what he called a TV sitcom's "obnoxious, objectionable content." His letter writing campaign netted responses from 17 companies and he also reached out to publications including Advertising Age and Media Week to generate publicity regarding his concerns about popular culture, The New York Times reported.

    Finally, on the national front, The Associated Press reported that a former president of Penn State and two other former university administrators were each sentenced Friday to at least two months in jail for failing to alert authorities to a 2001 allegation against ex-assistant football coach Jerry Sandusky, a decision that enabled the now-convicted serial predator to continue molesting boys.

    Thibault, a private investigator for the Hartford office of Integrated Security Services http://www.intesecurity.com/, is the author of a second collection of newspaper columns, “more COOL JUSTICE” http://morecooljustice.com/, credited with helping to free a woman unjustly convicted of first degree murder. His public service includes four years on a local board of education. Follow him on Twitter @cooljustice.









  • The Choate Report










  • Short version of column
    Via Hearst CT dailies


  • Danbury News Times


  • Connecticut Post


  • Norwalk Hour


  • Greenwich Time


  • Stamford Advocate







  • more COOL JUSTICE







  •           Airing on U.S. TV: Canadian #TrueCrime Documentary Series Features #CT #WoodChipper Case Among Others That Inspired Hollywood Thrillers         

    Update, 6-28-17, shows RESCHEDULED, to air Aug. 6:
    REELZ announces- We will air The Shocking Truth "Fargo" and "Foxcatcher" episodes on Sunday, August 6 at 9pm ET ("Fargo") and 9:30pm ET ("Foxcatcher").


    Editor's Note, 6-17-17: A power outage zapped the servers for The REELZ Channel Friday night. Fargo and Foxcatcher will be rescheduled, a spokesman said.



  • Video Preview 2 -- A Chainsaw in Lake Zoar -- Fargo: The Shocking Truth

  • Video Preview 3: Late PI Keith Mayo …

  • --
    Via Radar ONLINE:

  • 'The Shocking Truth' Reveals 'Wood Chipper' Murderer CAUGHT In String Of Lies!


  • Why would someone be out in a storm with a wood-chipper on the side of the road?

    How did Connecticut state police get a murder conviction without a body?

    Shocking Truth [Fargo - Crafts / wood chipper case] Provides the Answers June 16 on REELZ

    Series Premiered May 21 w/ Goodfellas; Up Next: Exorcist & Amityville Horror

  • BACKGROUND


  • REELZ



  • WFSB: Woodchipper murder case from 30 years ago was pivotal for forensic scientists




  • Complete Schedule



    (Goodfellas) Sunday, 5/21 at 9:00pm ET



    (Jaws) Sunday, 5/21 at 9:30pm ET



    (Exorcist) Friday, 5/26 at 9:00pm ET



    (Amityville Horror) Friday, 5/26 at 9:30pm ET

    (Conjuring) Friday, 6/2 at 9:00pm ET

    (Silence/Lambs) Friday, 6/2 at 9:30pm ET

    (Psycho) Friday, 6/9 at 9:00pm ET

    (Zodiac) Friday, 6/9 at 9:30pm ET


    During one of The Shocking Truth road trips through the US, a crew drove 1245 km conducting interviews in WI, IL, PA, NY, CT and MA. Dr. Henry Lee was interviewed for his crucial role in the infamous wood chipper murder.

    (Fargo) Friday, 6/16 at 9:00pm ET

    (Foxcatcher) Friday, 6/16 at 9:30pm ET

    (Natural Born…) Friday, 6/23 at 9:00pm ET

    (Monster) Friday, 6/23 at 9:30pm ET



              Reprise: Ongoing Cover-Up in Badaracco Homicide, Dog Killers, RFK 2nd Shooter & Many Other Matters in the Public Interest        

  • Complete list of SPJ winners


  • 'Therefore whatever you have spoken in darkness shall be heard in the light; and that which you have spoken in the ear in closets shall be proclaimed on the housetops.'
    - Luke 12:3







    Finalists,
    CT SPJ Contest, 2016


  • Complete list


  • Annual dinner


  • Dinner highlight:
  • Diane Smith and Maureen Croteau to be inducted into Connecticut Journalism Hall of Fame



  • Partial List of Finalists

    Courts/Crime
    Regional B




    Hartford won’t indemnify cops in killing of child’s dog; Officers’ personal assets attached; CTNewsJunkie; Andy Thibault
  • Complete article


  • Crime levels are surging in Plainfield; Norwich Bulletin; John Penney

    'Problem pockets' worry residents; Stamford Advocate; Nelson Oliveira, John Nickerson

    Lawyers have personal, professional reasons to help Community Speaks Out fight opioid crisis; The Day; Karen Florin

    Bones, tissue, teeth: Small details help investigators identify remains; The Day; Lindsay Boyle

    General Column
    Regional B




    Andy Thibault Cool Justice: Pretend investigations the norm in Badaracco homicide for 32 years; Litchfield County Times; Andy Thibault

  • Complete Article




  • Andy Thibault Cool Justice: Important questions about a homicide are ignored or deflected; Litchfield County Times;

  • Complete Article




  • Cool Justice: How judges and prosecutors circle the wagons to shaft public, protect themselves; Litchfield County Times;

  • Complete Article



  • Rabbi a man for all seasons, all people; News-Times; Brian Koonz

    Why would women vote for a misogynist? ; News-Times; Jacqueline Smith

    High noon in the wild west town of Bethel; News-Times; Jeff Gewert

    Police drug testing not a routine thing; Norwich Bulletin; Brendan Cox

    MPD secrecy standard procedure; Record-Journal; Eric Cotton

    Judge’s ruling says state must re-invent town-by-town system of schools; Record-Journal; Glenn Richter

    We’ve just made the wrong person president; Record-Journal; Glenn Richter

    Football is great, but is it worth the health risks? ; Record-Journal; Jeffery Kurz

    Coping with President Trump; Stamford Advocate; Jeff Gewert

    Biggest little fan meets Moriah; The Chronicle; Jennifer Lemanski

    The Coast Guard museum has no parking plan; The Day; David Collins

    Why was seizure-prone Sen. Maynard driving? ; The Day; David Collins

    In-Depth
    Regional B

    No place to play in western Greenwich; Greenwich Time; Emilie Munson





    Cool Justice: RFK Jr. points to forensic evidence of second gunman in his father’s assassination; Litchfield County Times; Andy Thibault

  • Complete Article




  • Year after Nina Coe’s disappearance from Middletown, family pleads for answers; Middletown Press; Cassandra Day

    Plight of low-wage workers worsens; News-Times; Rob Ryser

    Hihchey, Bilda went on $340,000 trip; Norwich Bulletin; Ryan Blessing

    Over decade, many NPU salaries jump 40%; Norwich Bulletin; Ryan Blessing

    Family devastated by loss of ‘hero’ mom killed in Meriden hit-and-run; Record-Journal; Leigh Tauss

    Pedestrians, bicyclists prohibited from accessing new trail through Wallingford condo complex; Record-Journal; Leigh Tauss

    Man who shot at Meriden mosque comes full circle as prison term approaches; Record-Journal; Mike Savino

    We were children, I wasn't the only victim; Stamford Advocate; Amanda Cuda

    Stamford's surging development demolishes old homes; Stamford Advocate; Liz Skalka

    Damning report details DCF failure in near-starvation of Groton toddler; The Day; Deborah Straszheim

    Navy gets under sailors’ skin; The Day; Julia Bergman

    Norwalk works to keep Millennials coming; The Hour; Kaitlyn Krasselt, Robert Koch







  • more COOL JUSTICE








  •           #Stalking & Critical Thinking on Law & Justice; Erin Moriarty Presents at University of St. Joseph – BOB THIESFIELD Photo Gallery        

    OK To Reprint, Repost
    w/ Credit to Bob Thiesfield, The Cool Justice Report


    USJ President Rhona Free w/ CBS '48 Hours' Correspondent Erin Moriarty

  • 38-second video recap





  • BACKGROUND



  • Warm Welcome From Crowd at the University's Crystal Room, Mercy Hall


    Moriarty Noted Connecticut's Stalking Law - Relying on Demonstration of Reckless Behavior - Is More Effective Than Those of Other States Which Require Proof of Intent by Often-Disturbed Stalkers


    Attentive Audience


    The Interactive Event Featured Dialogue w/ Students


    'NCIS' Star Pauley Perrette Shared Her Stalking Torment and Supported Others in '48 Hours' Broadcast Earlier This Year


    Before the Event, Moriarty Met w/ Students Including Erin Castaldi (left), a Veteran Who Is Studying To Be a Social Worker







  • USJ: Look for more exciting speakers in the fall



  •           See & Hear All About It! May 1 @USJCT - Erin Moriarty's Chilling, Blockbuster Report on Stalking @48hours         

    PODCAST,
    4-28-17

  • Preview via WTIC1080




  • Seating
    LIMITED




    To ensure seating, please R.S.V.P. to marketing@usj.edu

    Before the event please review the links below.

    Erin Moriarty has been a correspondent for "48 Hours" since 1990. She has covered the death of Princess Diana, the JonBenet Ramsey investigation, the murder of financier Edmund Safra, and the war in Iraq.

    Drawing on her training as an attorney, Moriarty has examined some of the most important social and legal issues of the day, including DNA testing of evidence in death-row cases, the abortion controversy and battered women's syndrome. She covered the Oklahoma City bombing, the Columbine High School shootings and the 9/11 investigation, overseas. Her exclusive behind-the-scenes report on the defense of convicted Oklahoma City bomber Timothy McVeigh was broadcast on "60 Minutes" in 1997.

    Moriarty has received numerous honors, including nine national Emmy Awards.



    "48 Hours" investigates the horrors of stalking
    and how CBS' "NCIS" star Pauley Perrette
    is fighting to change the laws to protect victims







    Victims in sustained fear
    as police responses vary
    including 'victim shaming'


  • STALKED broadcast



  • Moriarty bio








  • Also of interest

  • Solve this case: Who killed Kay Wenal?


  • Photos: Crime scene and clues


  • Solve this case: Can you identify the man in the sketch?




  • Full story


  • Moriarty Twitter


  • "48 Hours" Twitter


  • CBS Sunday Morning Twitter






  • For art's sake: When funding the NEA is in jeopardy








  • Interview w/ Mary Higgins Clark via CBS Sunday Morning






  • USJ Instagram


  • USJ Facebook


  • USJ Twitter


  • USJ website












  • 2017 Spring Speaker Series Debut w/ Poet Kate Rushin



  •           â€˜Hunted’ Reality TV Star, Retired NYPD Det., Both Private Investigators, on Ray Dunaway Show, WTIC 1080, Hartford        

  • Podcast, Schissel & Bainer w/ Rayman




  • Jacquie Bainer, Alan Schissel Talk Tracking
    Via Technology & Protecting
    Houses of Worship, Schools w/ Layered Approach



    8:20 AM SEGMENT, FRIDAY, MARCH 24, 2017











  • Mornings w/ Ray Dunaway










  • Hunted Background, Videos, News Clips


  • Schissel Op-Ed on Proactive Security Practices



  •           "If you want to know American greatness, go back and read all the work that Jimmy wrote."         




  • Legendary columnist Jimmy Breslin dead at 88


  • Jimmy Breslin, the gravedigger and ‘the bleary day’ they buried JFK


  • In Memoriam, via Twitter


  • Jimmy Breslin's novel in progress ...


  • Video obit via NY Times




  •           Drummer Jonathan Barber, Hartt School Alum, Heads Japan Tour         



    -- photos by Lauren Desberg, Urška Lukovnjak and John Salatto

    Announcement via Jonathan Barber:

    I am thrilled to announce my 1st International Tour under my own name. This tour will be in one of my favorite places in the world..... Japan.

    I shall call this tour the "Drums Around The World Tour." Joining me: Pianist Taber Gable and Bassist Joshua Crumbly. Grateful for this opportunity to share and spread my musical voice across the world.

    May 12(fri) Lifetime / Shizuoka city

    May 13(sat) Body & Soul / Tokyo

    May 14(sun) Le club jazz / Kyoto city

    May 15(mon) Le club jazz/ Kyoto city

    May 17(wed) Star eyes / Nagoya city

    May 19(fri) Swing hall / Musashino city Tokyo

    May 20(sat) Pit inn / Tokyo

    This is just the beginning... Vision Ahead 2017

    #drumsaroundtheworld

    More details coming soon...

  • Featured in Modern Drummer




  • Cool Justice photo by JOHN SALATTO
    #KrisAllen Quartet 3-12-16 #ButtonwoodTree, #Middletown CT: Kris Allen, alto and soprano saxophones; #FrankKozyra, tenor saxophone; #MattDwonszyk, bass; #JonathanBarber, drums. Original music from “Beloved” on #TruthRevolutionRecords (June 2016).


  • Jonathan Barber Drum Feature "Moontrane"


  • Barber website


  • Barber Facebook


  •           Protecting Our Houses of Worship: Guest Column by Security Expert / Retired NYPD Detective Sergeant         

    By ALAN SCHISSEL

    Founder & Chief Executive Officer

  • Integrated Security Services

  • According to the Washington Post, “it’s been a bad 2017 for Jews.” During the month of January, 48 bomb threats were called in to Jewish community centers across the country. Also last month, a neo-Nazi made national news by promising to hold a march in Whitefish, Montana to intimidate the town’s small Jewish population.

    This, of course, was followed by another unprecedented press conference by our President during which two reporters were moved to ask Mr. Trump about the rise in anti-Semitism. Many of us were aghast at the President’s rude and dismissive response, and his unwillingness to address the question seriously. The fact is, the country is experiencing an alarming increase of anti-Semitic incidents, and this has been trending upward since 2015. A security report issued by the Department of Homeland Security on protecting houses of worship stated that the United States has approximately 345,000 religious congregations representing 230 denominational groups and roughly 150 million members. Despite being sanctuaries from the troubles of the world, houses of worship have also been targets as violence has spiked across the country in recent years. The killing of nine people at Emanuel A.M.E. Church in Charleston, South Carolina was the largest mass shooting in a house of worship since 1991, when nine people were shot at the Wat Promkunaram Buddhist temple in Waddell, Arizona, northwest of Phoenix.

    [Under relentless pressure, the President subsequently denounced anti-Semitism.]

  • Empathy and action: Muslims unite to help fix vandalized Jewish cemeteries


  • The intent of this column is to generate awareness and provide a short guide which contains security practices for religious institutions, parishioners and our non religious communities to help deter threats, mitigate hazards and risks, and minimize the damage caused by an incident in or around a house of worship, including mass casualty events.

    I preface with the word “short” because there is a wide range of methods from programmatic and procedural considerations to technological enhancements that religious facilities and their leadership may consider implementing based upon the most likely threats to their facilities and their available resources. Basic security principals would suggest taking a blended approach to security and safety with the goal of hardening the facility to deter, detect and/or delay a criminal occurrence before it happens. The next steps are equally important and this is where lives are saved and mass casualties are reduced. Selecting the appropriate response to a threat or armed intrusion will help facilitate a safe transition into an effective recovery and restoration of services mode.

    Identifying Your Threats & Vulnerabilities

    Identifying and evaluating a known or potential threat to a given facility is the first step of a security assessment. The results of which will guide the process of developing a security plan. A proper readiness plan will aim to deter a threat or mitigate a threat by reducing the religious facility’s vulnerability to those threats.

    Natural Hazards vs. Targeted Violence

    As stated before, all life safety solutions should be designed using a blended approach to managing risk. Protecting a religious facility means your emergency management plan(s) must address an all-hazard approach to both natural hazards, e.g., infectious diseases and illnesses, fire, and seismic and weather-related events (hurricanes, tornadoes, flash floods) as well as targeted attacks. Spontaneous and pre-planned attacks are likely to occur by individual(s) who use firearms; improvised explosive devices (IEDs); vehicle-borne improvised explosive devices (VBIEDs); chemical, biological, or radiological attacks; or arson in order to inflict a number of casualties and damage to religious facilities.

    Protective Measures

    As previously mentioned earlier, a house of worship environment is managed by creating layers of protective measures in collaboration with state and local partners that allow religious institutions to deter, detect and delay threats. These layers also allow an institution to consider a threat as soon as possible and to more effectively respond to, further deter, eliminate or mitigate that threat.

    • Technological sensors such as CCTV surveillance cameras or alarms (fire, smoke, wind, and intrusion detection) will trigger informed decision-making.

    • Barriers, such as locked doors or fixed barriers or uniform security personnel should be in place to deter or delay a threat and afford more time for effective decision making.

    • Having the correct inbound and outbound communication network in place will influence a number key decisions. Time, or the lack of time, is a principle disrupter of effective decision-making. Sound communication strategies such as emergency email blasts, voice activated alert systems, and silent alert systems help to improve response to and during a crisis. An effective communication protocol should expand the window of time available to leaders to make sound decisions.

    Additional Measures to Consider:

    • Reporting Procedures

    • Establishing Collaborative Planning Teams

    • Starting an Emergency Operations Plan

    • Define Roles and Responsibilities

    • Notification Procedures

    • Evacuation Lockdown and Shelter‐In‐Place Policies and Procedures

    • Plans for Diverse Needs of Children and Staff

    • Necessary Equipment and Supplies

    • Common Vocabulary

    • Emergency Drills

    Call us at (212) 808-4153, or write us to tell what you think or how we can be of more assistance and remember, always dial 911 first in an emergency!







  • Integrated Security Services


  • About Alan Schissel










  • Cool Justice Editor’s Note: By way of disclosure, Cool Justice is an occasional denizen of Integrated’s Hartford office and once in a while even does a little work …

  • more COOL JUSTICE

  • Hartford PI Stars in Network Real-Life Manhunt Show

  •           #Hartford Private Eye @JBprivateeye @HuntedCBS Featured @betterct @WFSBnews & @hartfordcourant        

    UPDATES:


  • ICYMI: Entire Hunted Episode Featuring Hartford PI


  • Podcast Analysis of @Hunted: ‘Enemy of the State’ Marries ‘Survivor’ & Procreates







  • We talked to the crew of the show "Hunted" a few weeks ago, now we're chatting with Jacquie Bainer, one of the "hunters" on the show!

  • Better CT Broadcast







  • "On 'Hunted,' people are working in real time the way law enforcement does. I'm used to tracking people down and people hiding from me who don't want to talk about the case I'm investigating, but doing this in real time was just thrilling for me."

  • Hartford Courant Feature





  • Bainer Twitter Feed


  • Integrated Security Services


  • Cool Justice Editor’s Note: By way of disclosure, Cool Justice is an occasional denizen of Integrated’s Hartford office and once in a while even does a little work …

  • more COOL JUSTICE



  •           Edna Buchanan, Henry Lee in new documentary about wood chipper case and the movie Fargo #theSHOCKINGTRUTH series        

    UPDATES:

    Via Calgary Herald
  • After shock: Alberta-shot true crime series Shocking Truth recreates gruesome scenes to find the truth behind iconic films


  • Coen Brothers and Fargo


  • NEW: Podcasts


  • Via Toronto Sun --
    The Shocking TruthDebut


    From serial killers to the paranormal, this explores some real-life events that inspired Hollywood thrillers. It kicks off with back-to-back episodes, featuring The Silence of the Lambs (including an interview with Anthony Hopkins) and The Amityville Horror (including an interview with Ryan Reynolds). Hold me tight.
    When: Monday, Feb. 6 on E!

  • E! Debuts New Original Series THE SHOCKING TRUTH, February 6


  • E! Online Canada


  • Series explores true stories that inspired popular movies



    Shocking Truth
    [Fargo - Crafts / wood chipper case]



    Post via Internet Movie Database:

  • Danish flight attendant Helle Crafts goes [mysteriously] missing


  • Aired March 20 in Canada ...
    Series set for REELZ in U.S. this summer













  • Cast













  • More updates here:



  • the Shocking Truth




  • REELZ




  • Pyramid Productions


  • Screen writer Jason Lewis



  •           [updated*] Suggested reading and listening, 2017: THE BLACK BACK-UPS and other poems, by Kate Rushin        



    University of St. Joseph students, West Hartford, CT,
    With Kate Rushin Following Poetry Workshop, 2-22-17 ...






    usjct This afternoon some of our students had the pleasure of meeting successful writer, teacher, and feminist Kate Rushin. We had the pleasure of hearing her read The Bridge Poem along with many others. Thank you Kate for joining us here at USJ today! #usjct #poetry #katerushin

  • USJ Instagram


  • USJ Facebook


  • USJ Twitter


  • USJ website


  • Upcoming: Kate Reads Friday, Feb. 24 With Nat Reeves Jazz Combo, 'Nat Reeves State of Emergency,'









    At The Artists Collective, 1200 Albany Ave. (corner of Woodland Street) in Hartford.


  • Details



  • ---
    Podcast

    via










  • Kate joins Colin’s WNPR Nose panel for discussion of "Manchester By The Sea"















  • * Ongoing updates to include
    upcoming appearances






    Plz see links below for poems, articles


  • Leisure listening, Kate Rushin on NPR


  • The Bridge Poem


  • Kate's website






  • News reports:

  • Hartford Courant


  • Harvard Crimson




  • Photos by BOB THIESFIELD

    In photo above the book jacket, Kate fired up a diverse crowd of poets, writers, boxers, students, business leaders, cops and academics with her version of the Ali Shuffle. The event took place Jan. 15, 2010 at The Hartford Club.

    Directly above, Kate joins colleagues Gaby Calvocoressi and Binnie Klein, taking a breather after many rounds of poetry and prose. The festivities -- including writing workshops, two bands and a boxing exhibition -- drew about 150 guests to the Hartford Club
    .


              DECEMBER AT THE AUTHOR'S TABLE- James Herbert Smith, 'A Boy’s Life in the Baby Boom: True Tales from Small Town America' @HPLCT @IPNE         




    Thursday, Dec. 8, 4-7 pm, Hartford Public Library

    A memoir about growing up in the post-war baby boom, which takes us back to a freedom in childhood unheard of today. As the first boomers turn 70 this year, Smith among them… The memoir reminds us of both the travails and the ecstasy of being a kid, a teen-ager, and maturing through failure and success.




    James Herbert Smith was born in the first year of the Baby Boom, 1946, and grew up in Pittsford, NY, the setting of this book. As a young father he moved to Connecticut and began a career in Journalism, where for nearly five decades he wrote and edited thousands of stories for what has been called “the first draft of history” in our daily newspapers. He lives in Connecticut with his wife Jacqueline, also a journalist.



  • Hartford Public Library, Events & Exhibits


  • Excerpt, 'A Boy’s Life in the Baby Boom: True Tales from Small Town America'


  • Elm Grove Press


  •           12-yr-old: I Yelled at Him, Please, No, Don’t Shoot My Dog! Finally, Hartford Pays for Trespass, Unjustified Fatal Shooting        

    Via AP: The $885,000 settlement, approved by the city council on Monday night [2-27-17], includes damages and legal costs. The Hartford Courant reports it also indemnifies the officers.







  • Schoenhorn: We have a Constitution for a reason








  • BACKGROUND, 11 years of stonewalling and despicable maneuvers ...

    Dog killer, found liable, empties most of bank account - court filing


    Hartford police officer JohnMichael O'Hare -- found liable for violating the Fourth Amendment, trespassing and fatally shooting the pet dog of a 12-year-old Hartford girl -- has removed most of the cash from a savings account that had been attached by a federal court, according to a filing in Hartford's U.S. District Court.

    The court filing by the girl's attorney on Nov. 21, 2016 stated U.S. Magistrate Donna Martinez had ordered O'Hare and fellow officer Anthony Pia not to transfer assets. Attorney Jon Schoenhorn asserted in the filing that O'Hare's account shrunk from $23,508.06 to $1,383.40 this fall. Prior to that, a jury awarded a total of more than $200,000, including $32,000 in punitive damages for this Fourth Amendment case. Litigation costs and attorney fees are also to be awarded after eight years of litigation and are anticipated to exceed $700,000.

    The Associated Press has reported that the city of Hartford reversed its position to indemnify the officers. At the same time, according to the filing, the city continues to pay attorney's fees and defense costs.

    Attorneys for the police officers and the union did not respond to messages left Tuesday.

  • Jury verdict and background, column


  • Statement from Glenn Harris, 2-27-17:

    The law and the civil rights of the community should not be interpreted differently because of where a family chooses to live or their ethnicity. If it had not been for Attorney Schoenhorn’s perseverance and refusal to sit idly by as injustice sought to prevail, my family may have never gotten even the smallest sliver of justice. Our families in this city need to be treated with the dignity and respect that we deserve. It’s better for everyone who works and lives here to just treat people better. We are sons, daughters, brothers, sisters, fathers and mothers. We deserve better than to be simply treated as an afterthought, suspects, or insignificant.



    Amendment IV

    The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.



              ICYMI: Actors Sought for Documentary Crime Re-Enactments #WoodChipperMurder #Crafts #Newtown #DrHenryLee #KeithMayo         



    We are currently casting a documentary crime series titled The Shocking Truth that will air in Canada and the U.S. The show explores the true stories that inspired popular movies. We're looking for actors to take speaking parts in our dramatic re-enactments of these crimes. Our production company is based in Calgary, so we are looking to cast in Southern Alberta and to shoot between now and the end of the year ...

  • Complete article


  • Pyramid Productions


  • Breakthrough Entertainment


  •           #TrueCrime All Sides of the Law #moreCOOLJUSTICE Signed Copy #HolidayGift        

    In the halls of justice,
    the only justice is in the halls




  • Video: What is more COOL JUSTICE?




  • CBS880 report: Bonnie Foreshaw goes free


  • more COOL JUSTICE is a second collection of hard-hitting essays credited with helping to free a woman unjustly convicted of first degree murder.

    Novelist Chandra Prasad calls author Andy Thibault “Connecticut’s premiere journalistic warrior.”

    Wally Lamb says: “Thibault is a junkyard dog for justice who bares his teeth at pomposity and institutional unfairness and only bites the truly deserving.”

    more COOL JUSTICE includes controversial essays on topics including the Woody Allen sex assault case, the national assault on freedom of information and a 42-year-old cold case in New Orleans. A chapter entitled ‘Persons known & unknown blew up justice in Badaracco case’ examines the politics permeating the investigation and points to the judiciary’s complicity in the failure to solve the Mary Badaracco homicide in northwest Connecticut.

  • Yale’s bogus Woody Allen report, via Huffington Post


  • Thibault was honored by the Connecticut Council on Freedom of Information in 2014 with the Stephen Collins Award for his “many contributions to the cause of open and accountable government and a free and vigorous press.” Thibault was one of the few reporters to cover the Boston Marathon bombing trial gavel to gavel. His reports for the NBC News Investigative Unit can be found at

  • NBC News.com
  • by entering Andy Thibault in the search box.

  • Boston Marathon trial stories


  • His first collection, Law and Justice in Everyday Life, was published in 2002, featuring an introduction by Howard Zinn and foreword by F. Lee Bailey.

    Thibault has taught at Western Connecticut State University, the University of Hartford and Northwestern Connecticut Community College. He is an investigator for Integrated Security Services of Hartford and Manhattan.

    He is expected to appear in one of a series of true crime documentaries in 2017, filmed in late 2016 by a Canadian production company. Also in 2017, he expects to implement an “Alternative Speakers Series” at a university in Connecticut.





  • Signed copy via publisher


  • Also via Amazon


  • more COOL JUSTICE website



  • Also available via your favorite local bookstore, including:


  • Hickory Stick Bookshop



  • Byrd’s Books


  •           Resistance at Standing Rock: Dispatches from the Front Lines        

    UPDATES:





  • Water Protector Legal Collective Files Suit for Excessive Force against Peaceful Protesters


  • Veterans to Serve as ‘Human Shields’ for Dakota Pipeline Protesters



  • Oceti Sakowin encampment on Oct. 6, 2016. The proper name for the people commonly known as the Sioux is Oceti Sakowin, (Och-et-eeshak-oh-win) meaning Seven Council Fires.








    Story and Photos by John Briggs

    Cool Justice Editor's Note: OK to repost, courtesy of John Briggs and The Cool Justice Report.







    Corporate – Government Alliance Versus the American People

    Native Americans from tribes across the country have gathered on the windswept plains of North Dakota to pray with Mother Earth to keep the Dakota Access Pipeline (DAPL) from pumping 500,000 gallons of oil a day beneath the Missouri River. The natives know the pipeline will most certainly leak or break, as have most U.S. pipelines, fouling the water for the Great Sioux Nation and 18 million non-Natives downstream.

    The standoff -- which began in April -- continues as a new U.S. administration ascends to power with a president-elect who campaigned denying human-caused climate change and threatening the Paris Climate accords. This remains the overriding reality despite a mini walk back by Donald Trump pledging an open mind to The New York Times this week.

    Standing Rock illuminates the brazen alliance that has developed between corporate and government interests. Viewed from the front lines, the law has been turned into a fig leaf for repression and suppression. Only the discipline and spiritual clarity of the water protectors and the native elders has kept people from being killed or seriously injured since April when the movement began.

    The fused police-DAPL force is doing everything it can to incite a violent reaction from the resisters so as to crack down, clear the camps, imprison, or even gun down the natives. More than one commentator has found the atmosphere at Standing Rock similar to what led to the Wounded Knee massacre in 1890 when 300 Sioux were murdered by government troops who mistook their prayerful Ghost Dance for a war dance.

    A great deal is at issue at Standing Rock. The Sioux and their numerous native and non-native allies face a militarized force whose composition tells us something dark about the complex façade that U.S. democracy has become and suggests the proto-fascist zombi lurking beneath. More deeply, Standing Rock also emblemizes a struggle that is taking place at this moment in human history between two distinct modes of human consciousness.

    One mode is the familiar anthropocentric (human-centered) consciousness that the dominant culture most of us were born into favors—a consciousness that assumes reality is a collection of objects to be extracted, owned, and branded. Humans are the focus of this consciousness, meaning that our concerns about climate change focus primarily on the fate of our own species.

    Distinct from this anthropocentric mind-set is a second, ancient and spiritual mode of awareness that understands that the earth and its landscapes are not objects; they are relationships, including the tangle of relationships that gave us birth. This ancient mode of consciousness is potential in everyone, but for most it has been buried beneath the piles of conceptual objects that we have come to believe constitute our reality.

    The Indigenous Peoples gathered at Standing Rock are guided by this ancient, holistic, earth-mind consciousness, and so they understand that humans are not the most valuable living objects on the planet: we are not in control of the planet; it is not our job to manage nature; rather, our sacred task is to work with Mother Earth and other beings as members of Earth’s family. If we don’t, Mother Earth will make us face this spiritual truth one way or another.

    Guided by their ancient, earth-mind awareness, Native Americans have taken up a role as “water protectors.” “Mni Wiconi, Water is Life” is the slogan of the Standing Rock movement.

    Every day scores of Sioux from North Dakota, South Dakota and nearby states, along with Paiute, Shoshoni, Diné, and a sampling of other Natives from the 300 or so tribes whose flags fly at the Standing Rock encampments set out to pipeline construction sites in a convoy to engage in “actions” on the “front lines.”

    There the protectors sing and pray in the face of physical harassment and arrests by heavily armed police fused with a corporate security force.

    DAPL and their overlord company, Energy Transfer Partners, have lavished campaign contributions on politicians in North Dakota and the U.S. Congress so that they could use the state’s eminent domain powers to force purchase of land for the pipeline all across North Dakota, beginning in the Bakken fields in the northwest corner of the state where the fracked crude oil is extracted. Similar eminent domain arrangements were achieved in other states through which the 1,200-mile line traverses before reaching a river port in Illinois. The company promised Congress and the public that the pipeline would carry oil for 100 percent domestic use only, but it is clear from reporting done by the website The Intercept that the oil will be sold on international markets.

  • Though Promised for Domestic Use, Dakota Access Pipeline May Fuel Oil Exports


  • The DAPL line, now virtually complete except for permission from the Army Corps of Engineers to fill in the link that crosses under the Missouri River, passes just north of the Standing Rock Sioux Reservation and Cannon Ball, North Dakota. The DAPL construction runs through sacred burial and archeological grounds that the Lakota people were given free access to by treaties with the U.S. Government in the 19th Century. In mounting their resistance to the pipeline, the Standing Rock Sioux have been turned into “trespassers on their own land.”

    In late August, the tribe’s lawyers filed a stop work petition in federal court detailing areas where sacred sites would be disturbed if construction continued on its planned trajectory. The federal judge routinely forwarded a copy of the filing to DAPL. Over Labor Day weekend, when the company would not have been expected to work, pipeline crews leapfrogged to the disputed sacred and preemptively bulldozed them under. Too late, the judge granted the Sioux an emergency restraining order, but, then in a curious move, allowed construction in some areas where sacred sites have been discovered. DAPL has ignored a request from the Obama administration not to work in buffer areas on either side of the river. No fines have been imposed for intentionally bulldozing the disputed sacred sites.

  • The Legal Case for Blocking the Dakota Access Pipeline


  • Burial ground at center of police confrontations is known historical site


  • In recent live-stream videos from the front lines, DAPL-police snipers can be seen perched on top of a sacred mound called Turtle Island, their high-powered rifle crosshairs trained on the water protectors who are standing in prayer in the frigid lake below.

    North Dakota wants the federal government to pick up the tab for the massive expenditures required to keep the Native Americans under their guns. Alternatively, the CEO of Energy Transfers, Kelcy Warren, has offered to pick up the millions-of-dollars tab.

  • ETP CEO Kelcy Warren Says They Have Offered to Pay Protest Related Expenses


  • Native media have documented that DAPL has already been supplying military-style equipment, drones, armored vehicles, riot gear, water canons, concussion grenades and other armaments. The tax-payer-funded and corporate-sponsored front lines phalanx is led by the Morton County Sheriff’s Department, which has local jurisdiction, reinforced by North Dakota State Troopers, North Dakota National Guard units, sheriffs and police from six nearby states—all interpenetrated by DAPL security (while the FBI lurks in the background). A contingent of Hennepin County, Minnesota, Sheriffs’ Deputies were recalled following protests back home. Residents in the state of Ohio are writing letters and calling legislators to express their distress that their law enforcement has been enlisted into this repressive force.

  • Hennepin Co. sheriff's deputies leave Standing Rock protest


  • Native media’s live stream videos show DAPL security teams in mirror-visor helmets and black ops body armor with no identification, mingling with the police, sometimes directing them when and who to mace or pepper spray. They point out media making video for arrest. The big fossil fuel company evidently has plenty of experience dealing with protestors around the world. In their blank, reflecting visors we can see the soulless Darth Vader face of the government-corporate proto-fascist state the U.S. is becoming.

    Of course, this struggle with the Wasi’chu (Lakota word for the white man, meaning literally “takes too much”) is an old story for Native-Americans. In the 18th and 19th centuries it took the form of the Sioux nations trying to hold back the tsunami of colonizers flooding into their ancestral lands, occupying and despoiling them. The big difference now is that the fire-power of the state (think Custer’s 7th Cavalry or present day militarized police) has been fused with vast profit centers dependent for their existence on plundering the earth in the name of energy-squandering lifestyle survival.

    The provocations the water protectors endure take many forms. There is the psychological pressure of constant surveillance: the heavy police presence on the roads around tribal and reservation lands, the DPLA helicopter and a small plane that circle constantly above the encampments; there is the Bureau of Indian Affairs station set up on a knoll to suck out data from the cell phones of anyone in the area. There is the pepper spraying and tasing of water protectors who are praying. There is the more recent blasting of the protectors with freezing water canons in sub zero weather. There is the constant threat of weapons pointed at them. One twitching trigger finger could set off a slaughter.

    The water protectors are unarmed. The resistance movement does not allow guns in the encampments. One day, at one of the front line actions, an armed man showed up with a pistol and began firing. Possibly he was paid by DAPL to create an incident. The Natives are aware of paid provocateurs or agitators passing through the camps, pulling dirty tricks, looking to start something. Antimedia reported about the man with the gun: “According to an official statement from the tribe, the man fired several shots from his gun before being peacefully apprehended by tribal police. Witnesses at the scene say he pointed his gun at several protesters. The man was clearly trying to provoke violence that could later be used to demonize protesters who have so far remained peaceful.”

    The news site added, “The Morton County Sheriff’s Department circulated a false report claiming the man was shot, presumably by protesters… [As images show], the man was not harmed. The Sheriff’s Department has since retracted that report. Anti-Media’s attempts to obtain clarifying comments from Morton County Sheriffs were ignored.”

  • Dakota Access Caught Infiltrating Protests to Incite Violence, Funding Trolls Online


  • On a hill overlooking Oceti Sakowin, the largest of the Standing Rock encampments, an old army tent houses the field office of the rotating teams of lawyers who come to Standing Rock to help out. They use donations made to the resistance to bail out protectors who have been arrested; they try to negotiate with the police so the protectors can be allowed to pray. The constant arrests on trumped-up charges are an ongoing harassment—people maced or beaten, violently thrown to the ground and zip-tied. Often activists are charged with trespass and “riot” on the Morton County Sheriff’s novel legal theory that if several people are arrested for trespass that must signify that they were engaged in a riot.

    All this naturally requires court time and money to defend, incarceration in usually unpleasant conditions, including dog kennels. (Though the white allies who are arrested seem to get better treatment.)

    Arrests are to be expected as a consequence of civil disobedience. But some arrests are directed at chilling speech. One lawyer who came to Standing Rock from the Oregon-based Civil Liberties Defense Center, an activist defense nonprofit primarily involved in climate protests, https://cldc.org/ told Jordan Chariton of The Young Turks Network that often after the day’s action was over, police would stop the last cars in the caravan. They would then make “snatch and grab” arrests, impounding the cars of people who had come to support the water protectors but had no expectation that they’d be arrested when the action was over and the police told them to leave. They have to pay heavy fines ($900) to get their cars back. She said the arrests and impoundment fines for their cars are unlawful. “The intention with those types of actions is to scare out-of-towners from being comfortable coming to these actions. So they’re trying to chill the rights of others to come and participate in these protests.”

  • Environmental Lawyer Explains Standing Rock Legal Issues




  • The authorities regularly characterize the natives as terrorists, and local radio spreads false rumors of farm animals being slaughtered and stolen, reported vandalism—the kind of thing you would expect from psychologically projected homesteader fears about savage Indians of earlier centuries.

    Yes, Magazine on Oct. 31 reported: “The county sheriff is claiming the water protectors were violent and that police were stopping a riot. But hours of live video feed from people caught in the confrontation showed instead a military-style assault on unarmed people: police beating people with batons, police with assault rifles, chemical mace, guns firing rubber bullets and beanbag rounds, tasers.”

  • Why Police From 7 Different States Invaded a Standing Rock Camp—and Other Questions


  • The UN has sent human rights observers. According to Salon, Nov. 16, 2016: “The U.N. special rapporteur said that American law enforcement officials, private security firms and the North Dakota National Guard have used unjustified force against protesters.

    “ ‘This is a troubling response to people who are taking action to protect natural resources and ancestral territory in the face of profit-seeking activity,’ [Maina] Kiai [U.N. special rapporteur] said in his statement, which was issued by the Office of the U.N. High Commissioner for Human Rights and was endorsed by several other U.N. experts.

  • Native Americans facing excessive force in North Dakota pipeline protests – UN expert


  • “At least 400 activists have been detained and often have been held in ‘inhuman and degrading conditions in detention,’ Kiai added. Some indigenous protesters have said they were treated like animals and even held in dog kennels.

  • Dakota pipeline protesters say they were detained in dog kennels; 268 arrested in week of police crackdown


  • “ ‘Marking people with numbers and detaining them in overcrowded cages, on the bare concrete floor, without being provided with medical care, amounts to inhuman and degrading treatment,’ the U.N. expert said.

    “ ‘The excessive use of State security apparatus to suppress protest against corporate activities that are alleged to violate human rights is wrong,’ he continued, noting that it violates U.N. guidelines on business and human rights.

    “Amnesty International USA, which has repeatedly criticized authorities for not respecting the rights of protesters, issued another statement on Tuesday noting that U.S. authorities had put up roadblocks to prevent journalists and human rights observers from documenting the protests and the official response.”

  • U.N. experts call for halt in Dakota Access pipeline, blast “excessive force” against protesters


  • Living on Earth reporter Sandy Tolan reflected: “You know, at times I felt I was back reporting in the West Bank, and not the Northern Plains…”

  • Standing With the Standing Rock Sioux


  • The Bundy crew was the cowboys, not the Indians

    Compare the government response at Standing Rock with the response occasioned by Ammon Bundy and his gang of armed militants when they occupied Oregon’s Malheur National Wildlife Refuge for over a month in January 2016. Imagine if the Bundy gang had been pepper sprayed, beaten, hit with water cannon, tased. But the Bundy crew were taking over the refuge to proclaim their belief that public lands should be given free to the profit-making private ranching business. In other words, the Bundy crew was the cowboys, not the Indians.

    The mainstream corporate media has largely ignored the stand-off at Standing Rock. Rallies have taken place around the world at places like Tokyo, Stockholm, and Auckland, but the sad truth is many foreigners have heard more about Standing Rock than Americans have. Not surprising. The news editors, working for corporate media conglomerates, choose what they believe we should know and what fits the larger corporate agenda, and so they devote massively more play to Brad Pitt, to the gossipy politics of who’s-on-first, and to whatever the latest glittering consumer thing is than they do to climate change and issues highlighted by the poor and the powerless, like Standing Rock. What coverage that does exist is usually cursory and misleading.

    Fortunately, alternative media have been on the scene and active at Standing Rock. As someone who taught journalism for more nearly 20 years, it has been refreshing for me to see what the alternative press is accomplishing.

    Amy Goodman of the webcast Democracy Now brought the prayer-resistance movement to national attention over the summer. She was arrested and charged with riot in absentia for her live reports of water protectors being set upon by dogs. The charge was later dismissed in court.

    Jordan Chariton of The Young Turks Network has done searching interviews and incisive commentary from the scene.

    But my absolute favorite news source at Standing Rock is Myron Dewey’s Digital Smoke Signals. Dewey does updates every day, which he posts on Facebook. I highly recommend anyone who has a Facebook account to “follow” him. I went to Standing Rock on Oct. 4-11 with two friends and I have since been able to keep up with developments on the ground through Dewey’s Facebook broadcasts. He posts live stream unedited clips that constitute what he calls an ongoing “documentation” of what is happening day-to-day at the movement.

    Here is Dewey at night standing on a hillside next to the Oceti Sakowin encampment. His face appears in the glow of his screen. Then he’s panning and zooming in on a large grassfire as he’s telling us about it. His finger appears in the screen and points out where the fire started. He says the helicopter which constantly circulates over the camp suddenly disappeared 20 minutes before they saw the first flames. He zooms to the area where he and the person he is with first spotted the fire. He says, “It looked like someone using a drip torch.” He says they called 911, but it’s been over an hour and the Morton County Fire Department hasn’t shown up. He tells the people in the camp, his audience, not to worry, though. It looks like the fire was started by DAPL employees to scare them or hurt them. But the Oceti Sakowin is full of Indians who supplement their income by wild-land firefighting, work that also benefits Mother Earth; he mentions that he is himself a “hotshot” firefighter [one of the elite crews]. He and his fellow firefighters can tell by the wind direction that the fire won’t harm the camp.

    Now here’s Dewey on a bright morning walking along the road by Oceti Sakowin. A young man appears on screen, and Dewey asks him who he is and why he’s here. He’s from the Paiute nation. “I’m here to protect the water,” he says. Dewey asks him to sing a Paiute song. The young man closes his eyes and sings.

    In another nighttime broadcast find we ourselves looking through a car windshield, headlights illuminating the highway, centerlines whizzing by. We hear voices talking in the backseat. The car drives on and on. We’re just watching the road. Then ahead is a police roadblock. The police van looms. Dewey gets out with his camera and calls over to the officers, asks them where they’re from, inquires about where the road blocks are, what are the open routes. At one level it’s a mundane exchange between a citizen and police, but you experience the edginess of the situation. More deeply, you feel the riskiness and pathos that is involved any human interaction. Dewey firmly exercises his right to have these protect-and-serve police respond to him civilly; he is cordial and respectful in a way that reinforces to them and to his viewers that he is after all not their enemy but a fellow human being. Dewey asks more questions and the lead officer says he doesn’t want to be filmed; Dewey offers to turn his camera away from them and onto himself. The distant officers disappear from the screen and Dewey’s face fills it. The contact officer walks nearer; we can hear his voice. Dewey can’t resist a joke, though. He asks the officer if he’s sure he doesn’t want to become famous by putting his face on Dewey’s screen? You realize these are just guys doing their job. Dewey understands that, but he also wants to educate them about the water protectors’ mission. He never misses an opportunity to educate his adversary, as well as his own people about the larger dimensions of the Standing Rock resistance. When he gets back in the car, someone in the back seat says “Let’s get out of here; this is enemy territory.” Dewey laughs, turning the car around, “It’s not enemy territory.”

    I believe you learn more about Standing Rock by watching Dewey’s unedited video than you ever could from watching any number of dramatically produced, commercially constricted reports on CNN, complete with the drumb-drumb latest crisis theme music.

    Dewey explains to his viewers that what they’re seeing is a “documentation” that’s not edited. “It’s not scripted. It’s not acted out.”

    After a month of watching Dewey’s daily reports I realize more fully than I ever have before how ghastly and vacuous mainstream news reporting is: a production where facts have been emptied of the humanity of real encounters, replaced by the shallow performances of reporters and news sources, slick, clichéd phrasing, behavior slotted into ready made categories, events analyzed and even predigested. The news about reality comes to us compartmentalized in trays like tasteless microwave dinners. Rarely is the reader or viewer allowed to simply experience the event unfolding through the reporter’s eyes or camera. The stories are crafted and slickly packaged. Their very polish and stimulating presentation sabotages their meaning and replaces it with a meaningless, artificial understanding.

    Note that I am not saying that the news these days is politically biased. Some obviously is, but the left or right bias charge is a serious red herring, a mis-direction. In fact, in mainstream media’s very effort to appear neutral and unbiased means events are chopped up and pieced together to fit the templates of a few hackneyed forms of storytelling: the winner-loser story, the conflict story, the individual overcoming obstacles story, the facing bad choices stories, he-said, she-said stories, scandal stories, hypocrisy stories. You’ve seen them all, repeatedly.

    Most of these templates come plated with a cynicism, skepticism, superiority, or sentimentality that grabs our attention by adding a dash of disgust. The current journalistic manner of telling stories reduces and dismisses the story in a way that sometimes makes the commercials and pop-up ads come as a relief. None of the common journalistic templates or attitude has much to do with real life as it’s lived in the moment. It’s not what people really experience in their lives. Instead, it’s how they’ve been conditioned to wrap up experience afterward in a dramatized way that leaches out the nuance, that leaves out the moment-to-moment uncertainty, or as the Lakota call it, the Wakan, the deep mystery of relationships that permeates every event. And that’s what Dewey’s broadcasts have in abundance. You get to see him interacting with the people who show up on his screen. You get to feel his humanity and the mystery of everyday relationships taking place at Standing Rock that he brings to light. It’s certainly not dramatic or melodramatic. It’s not interesting or stimulating in the usual way. It does seem really important.

    So when Dewey sits in his parked car and does an update video on “10 things to know about DAPL” (Nov. 18, 2016), there’s no editing and no script, meaning that you get to see him thinking through what those top 10 things might be. Some points he makes are incisive and comic, others not so much. But the not-so-much ones can lead you to thinking about gray areas, the imprecise observations we all make. He asks a guy who just got in the car to help out with his list and the guy, William Hawk Birdshead, goes immediately serious on him until Dewey says, “I was trying to keep it light.” So the Birdshead says, “Laughter is good medicine.” Suddenly they’re off. Dewey mimics the shifty-eyed look of the FBI guys lurking around the area and denying they are FBI, the DAPL security characters trying to look all steely and tough. We learn that in the encampments they say that “DAPL dresses up like Ninja Turtles.” You can tell that it’s DAPL undercover because those guys never drive rez cars, which are rusted and dented. Nobody is spared. Dewey describes the water protectors just arriving from California as dudes who’ve “got their animal spirits on… They’re all furred up. They’re coming in all mystical and crystals.” He and his buddy laugh, which Dewey says is laughter “in a good way,” because the whole thing going on at Standing Rock is deadly serious but you need laughter, because that’s good medicine for healing. And healing and praying are about “getting reconnected with the Earth.”

    This points to a major difference between anthropocentric prayer as most of us know it and earth-mind prayer. In the prayer that most people are familiar with, an individual seeks intercession for human needs with a transcendent being. The Native prayer is about healing not getting. The prayer is a community ceremony or song or ritual to maintain or restore the balance between and among beings, both animate and inanimate. Prayer is to all my relatives, all my relations, the birds, the water, the wind, the buffalo, my family, even those who oppose me as enemies. Mitakuye Oyasin is an important Lakota phrase that means “all my relations.” When you’re watching a Dewey update from Standing Rock you’re experiencing Mitakuye Oyasin in action. It’s newscasting as a kind of prayer, in the earth-mind sense. Whether he’s engaging in laughter or educating about the spiritual importance of water, you can see that what he’s getting at is healing relationships. Watching and listening, you get to be part of that healing.

    What Dewey does goes way beyond advocacy journalism.

    Our traveling companion for our visit to Standing Rock, Lakota elder Tiokasin Ghosthorse, also provides a good way to keep up with developments through the interviews he conducts for his weekly syndicated broadcast from WPKN in Bridgeport Conn. and WBAI in New York City. On Oct. 31, 2016, Tiokasin interviewed a young man who was seized on Oct. 27 when a frontline camp was destroyed by police. Trenton Joseph Castillas Bakeberg, in the bloodline of Crazy Horse, was praying in a sweat lodge when the militarized police swept through the camp. They yanked him out of the sweat lodge and arrested him. The young water protector told Tiokasin:

    “I pray that we’ll be able to keep a state of prayer and peace, as we have been… Although there’s some people on our side are more likely to tend toward violence. But there’s also people on our side to stop them. Don’t start a fight. That’s what it’s all about, keeping it peaceful because the elders told us in the beginning that all it takes is one single act of violence, one person attacking a police officer and they’ll unleash the fear on all of us. This wrath that we have with our military overseas, we’re beginning to see it now in the heart of our own country. All for the greed and the corporate interests of this government. They say we’re a democracy but it’s not showing anymore. The people didn’t want this pipeline, but this foreign entity that they call a corporation, Energy Transfers, is saying, we don’t care. We want this money. We need this for economic stability of the country and that somehow trumps the interests of our communities and our nation as a whole….We’re standing up to this corporate machine with prayer and love.”

  • Forcibly removed from prayer at Standing Rock


  • Against a heavily armed, corporatized democracy designed to ensure that only powerful business and political elites rule the land and possess the wealth of its objects, the Native-American people at Standing Rock stand in defense of Mother Earth armed with songs, prayers, and an understanding that Earth’s objects are us, and we are them. They are our relatives. It seems better armament than most of us Wasi’shu possess. Webster defines fascism as “a political system headed by a dictator in which the government controls business and labor and opposition is not permitted.” It’s an incendiary word, and readers might think ill of me for introducing it here. Certainly we are not a fascist state yet. But for the prayer-resistance at Standing Rock, the clear alliance between corporate and government interests to quell their opposition under color of the law has a fascist flavor.

    It should not surprise anyone that the new US president reportedly holds stocks that directly fund the Dakota Access Pipeline and that the DAPL CEO Kelcy Warren gave the Trump campaign a substantial donation.

  • Trump's Personal Investments Ride on Completion of Dakota Access Pipeline


  • This is how the proto-fascism works. Ironically (or perhaps absurdly), Trump may have been elected by people hoping he would somehow counter the tightening grip of multinational corporations on their lives. One might wish for that to happen.

    At a deep level, Standing Rock may suggest that such absurdities as a Trump presidency occur because our mode of consciousness is impaired or inadequate to the situation it has created on our planet at this historical time. Too many of us have gone dead to the natural world we come from. Our obsessive anthropocentric mode of consciousness has reduced nature and reality at large to a bunch of things we have names for—things that feed our greed. Fortunately, many Indigenous people have retained an acute and ancient consciousness that we are those rocks and trees and clouds, and birds and water that we see outside our windows, and that restoring our relationships with them is incumbent on us.

    John Briggs is emeritus distinguished Professor of Writing and Aesthetics from Western Connecticut State University. He was the English Department’s journalism coordinator for 18 years and was one of the founders of Western’s Department of Writing, Linguistics, and Creative Process. He is the author of several well-known books on chaos theory, fractals and creativity. He lives in the hilltown of Granville, Mass., where served as a Selectman for five years and as reserve police officer for 10 years.


    When people at Standing Rock talk about the black snake they mean the pipeline, referring to an old Sioux legend about a black snake that will threaten the end of the world. The Lakota prophet Black Elk said that in the seventh generation, the Sioux tribes would unite to save the world.

    Media covering the Standing Rock resistance movement:

  • Digital Smoke Signals


  • Myron Dewey, Facebook


  • The Antimedia


  • Democracy Now


  • The Intercept


  • The Guardian


  • Censored News


  • Unicorn Riot


  • Living on Earth


  • The Indigenous Environmental Network


  • Status of Standing Rock court claim



  •           Burn After Reading        

    Who’s Who
    What’s What

    In the World of CIA Fronts, Partners, Proprietaries & Contractors




    NEW BOOK:

    The Almost Classified Guide to CIA Front Companies, Proprietaries & Contractors
    By WAYNE MADSEN
    ISBN: 978-1-365-11196-9


    Cool Justice Editor's Note: Following are excerpts from author Madsen's introduction and the body of the work. Additional suggested reading: News story about Madsen's book via the Washington, D.C. based Justice Integrity Project [link at the bottom of this post].

    EXCERPTS:

    From the Introduction


    One of the most pervasive uses of companies as intelligence partners was under the CIA’s Operation MOCKINGBIRD. During the Cold War, the CIA, often with the approval of corporate executives, infiltrated their agents to work as journalists in newspapers, radio and television networks, wire services, and magazines. The following pages in this book are rife with examples of this penetration of the Fourth Estate – all too many in the opinion of this journalist. The CIA admitted to at least 400 journalists on the agency’s payroll at the height of MOCKINGBIRD. The CIA traditionally understates its capabilities, especially when its covert activities become publicly known. Moreover, the end of the Cold War did not stop the practice of the CIA in infiltrating the media and slant news reports to its wishes.

    *

    An insightful look behind the veils of secrecy into the CIA’s use of fronts, proprietaries, and partners calls into question the purpose of the CIA. Created by President Harry S Truman to serve as a central collector and repository of intelligence, the CIA became much more than that. A few weeks after the United States witnessed the assassination of President Kennedy in the middle of downtown Dallas, Truman penned an op-ed piece that appeared in several newspapers around the country. In it, Truman shared his regret for having created the CIA in 1947:

    “I think it has become necessary to take another look at the purpose and operations of our Central Intelligence Agency—CIA . . . For some time I have been disturbed by the way CIA has been diverted from its original assignment. It has become an operational and at times a policy-making arm of the Government. This has led to trouble and may have compounded our difficulties in several explosive areas.

    "I never had any thought that when I set up the CIA that it would be injected into peacetime cloak and dagger operations. Some of the complications and embarrassment I think we have experienced are in part attributable to the fact that this quiet intelligence arm of the President has been so removed from its intended role that it is being interpreted as a symbol of sinister and mysterious foreign intrigue.”

    *

    The 21st century’s CIA’s partners are more likely to be found among high-tech companies marketing the latest and greatest mobile applications and data mining programs than among banks, law offices, and advertising agencies. However, in the post-World War II era, the CIA’s top and middle echelons were normally found operating through cover as typewriter-pecking journalists, traveling Madison Avenue admen, corporate lawyers, and chain-smoking oilmen. In the 1970s and 80s, CIA contractors and partners began showing up in the high-tech field, with database, local area networking, and on-line information retrieval systems attracting the most interest by Langley.

    *

    As this book went to press, the smart phone game application Pokémon Go fad was sweeping the planet. Unbeknownst to many of the on-line game’s avid fan’s was the connection of the game’s developers to the CIA’s venture capital firm IN-Q-TEL. All users saw their geo-location and other smart phone data being swept up by a CIA partner firm.

    SELECTED ENTRIES

    Amazon, Inc. [CIA contractor]. Company provides cloud computing services for the CIA. Amazon’s CEO Jeff Bezos also owns The Washington Post.

    American Historical Society. [CIA partner]. Many society officials were OSS/CIA officers.

    American Press Institute. [CIA front]. Operating out of Columbia University, the institute’s director in the 1950s was a CIA officer.

    AmeriCares. [CIA partner]. A non-profit organization that is often the “first in” at refugee situations. Founded by tycoon J. Peter Grace, a board chairman of the CIA front, the American Institute for Free Labor Development (AIFLD) and a trustee of another CIA front, the American Committee for Liberation from Bolshevism, AmeriCares was involved in funding the Nicaraguan contras. The group has also provided the CIA with recruiting opportunities at mass refugee sites, particularly in Latin America and Asia.

    Bechtel Corporation. [CIA contractor]. Bechtel is a large construction company that has included former CIA director Richard Helms, CIA pseudonym “Fletcher M. Knight,” among its executive ranks. Bechtel was active in providing corporate cover for the OSS in the Middle East during World War II. Bechtel has been a consummate service company for various CIA operations, including support for the CIA-inspired coup against the Syrian government in 1949, the Iranian government of Prime Minister Mohamed Mossadeq in 1953, and President Sukarno of Indonesia in 1965. From the 1960s to the 1970s, Bechtel provided cover for CIA agents in Libya under both the regime of King Idris and his successor, Muammar Qaddafi. Sometimes called a “secret arm” of the CIA, Bechtel’s executives included those who would join President Reagan’s Cabinet, including Secretary of State George Schultz and Secretary of Defense Caspar Weinberger.

    Before World War II, Steve Bechtel formed a military-industrial complex partnership with John McCone. McCone later became the chairman of the Atomic Energy Commission and later, director of the CIA. The CIA has used Bechtel to provide cover for non-official cover CIA operatives abroad.

    Blackstone Investment Group. [CIA front]. With offices in Washington, DC and Moscow, arranged for the purchase of KGB documents following the collapse of the Soviet Union. Among the documents sought by the front company were any related to illegal CIA activities during the Cold War, including the 1963 assassination of President John F. Kennedy.

    Bourbon and Beefsteak Bar and Restaurant. [CIA front]. Opened in 1967 in King’s Cross in Sydney, Australia. Served as a rendezvous point for CIA, Australian Security Intelligence Organization (ASIO), and organized crime figures. Its proprietor was Bernie Houghton, a CIA operative with links to Nugan Hand Bank, CIA weapons smuggler Edwin Wilson, and CIA clandestine services officers Theodore Shackley, Rafael Quintero, and Thomas Clines.

    Center for Democracy. [CIA front]. Administered under the aegis of Boston University, the center maintained offices in Boston, Washington, DC, Guatemala City, and Strasbourg, France. Involved in CIA operations in eastern Europe, Central America, and Africa.

    Colt Patent Firearms Company. [CIA partner]. Based in Hartford, Connecticut, provided corporate cover for CIA officers operating abroad.

    Daddario & Burns. [CIA partner]. Headed by former OSS officer Emilio Daddario, a Democratic Representative from Connecticut, the Hartford-based law firm provided services to the CIA.

    DC Comics. [CIA partner]. Worked with the International Military Information Group (IMIG), a joint CIA/Pentagon unit at the State Department, to disseminate propaganda comic books, featuring Superman, Batman, and Wonder Woman, in Serbo-Croatian and Albanian, to youth in the Balkans during the military conflicts in that region.

    Disney Corporation. [CIA partner]. CIA agents who were adept at creating front companies and shell corporations in Florida, worked closely with Disney in preparation for the construction of Disney World near Orlando, Florida. OSS veteran “Wild Bill” Donovan and CIA shell company expert Paul Helliwell helped create two fake Florida cities, Bay Lake and Lake Buena Vista, as well as a number of shell corporations, to keep secret the plans for Disney World. This kept land prices low because real estate speculators were unaware of the prospective value of the land in a desolate area of central Florida.

    Emory School of Medicine. [CIA partner]. Located in Atlanta, Georgia. Involved in the CIA’s MK-ULTRA behavioral modification project.

    Enron Corporation [CIA partner]. Houston-based firm that was used by the CIA to provide commercial cover for its agents around the world. There were at least 20 CIA employees on Enron’s payroll. Andre Le Gallo, a former official of the CIA’s Operations Directorate, went to work as a corporate intelligence officer for Enron.

    Fair Play for Cuba Committee (FPCC). [CIA front]. Officially established by American Trotskyists, the group was penetrated by CIA operatives. The FPCC New Orleans office was a CIA front that provided cover for the anti-Fidel Castro activities of Lee Harvey Oswald, Clay Shaw, and David Ferrie, among others. The New Orleans FPCC office was located at 544 Camp Street and shared the same building entrance with Guy Banister Associates, Inc., a private detective agency, the address for which was 531 Lafayette Street and around the corner from 544 Camp Street.

    In December 1963, after the assassination of President John F. Kennedy, the FPCC ceased all U.S. operations.

    General Electric Company. [CIA partner]. Based in Fairfield, Connecticut, provided corporate cover for CIA officers operating abroad.

    General Foods Corporation. [CIA partner]. Advertising account at CIA’s Robert Mullen Company handled by an active CIA employee.

    Google, Inc. [CIA partner]. Developed as a result of a research grant by the CIA and Pentagon to Stanford University’s Department of Computer Science. The CIA referred to the research as the “google project.”

    Greenberg Traurig. [CIA partner]. Washington, DC “connected” law firm.

    Guy Banister Associates, Inc. [CIA partner]. New Orleans private detective agency headed by former FBI agent Guy Banister. The detective agency coordinated the activities of various anti-Castro Cuban groups in New Orleans, including Banister’s own Anti-Communist League of the Caribbean, as well as the Cuban Revolutionary Council, the Cuban Democratic Revolutionary Front, Friends of Democratic Cuba, and the Crusade to Free Cuba Committee.

    Banister and Associates shared office space with the CIA’s New Orleans front, the Fair Play for Cuba Committee, headed by Lee Harvey Oswald.

    Hale and Dorr. [CIA partner]. Boston-based law firm that provided cover for CIA’s Independence and Brown Foundations.

    Halliburton. [CIA contractor]. Based in Houston, it is the world’s largest oil service company. Recipient of a number of CIA sole-source contracts for services worldwide.

    Harper and Row, Inc. [CIA partner]. Manuscripts submitted to the New York publisher that dealt with intelligence matters, particularly CIA operations, were turned over to the CIA for censoring edits before publication.

    Hewlett Packard Corporation. [CIA partner]. Sold computers to Iraq for Saddam Hussein’s missile program with the knowledge and approval of the CIA.

    Hill & Knowlton. [CIA partner]. Public relations firm that teamed with the CIA on a number of operations. Hill & Knowlton’s numerous offices abroad provided cover for CIA agents. One known Hill & Knowlton office that was a CIA front operation was in Kuala Lumpur.

    Kerr-McGee. [CIA partner]. Provided corporate cover for CIA officers operating overseas.

    Kissinger Associates, Inc. [CIA partner]. New York-based international consulting firm founded by former Secretary of State and National Security Adviser Henry Kissinger. Former National Security Adviser Brent Scowcroft is a co-owner. The firm provided support to the CIA-linked American Ditchley Foundation and the Bilderberg Group. Much of the 1982 seed money for Kissinger Associates was provided by Goldman Sachs.

    Knight Foundation. [CIA partner]. Also known as the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation. Based in Miami, the foundation provides funding for various CIA-connected media operations in the United States and around the world.

    Kroll Inc. [CIA partner]. Founded in 1972 by Jules Kroll, who had links to both U.S. and Israeli intelligence. Based in Manhattan. French domestic law enforcement believed Kroll’s Paris office was a CIA front. Kroll handled the security for the World Trade Center after the 1993 terrorist bombing and continued to be responsible for security up to, during, and after the September 11, 2001 terrorist attack. Kroll employed former FBI assistant director for counter-terrorism John O’Neill, who died in the collapse of the World Trade Center.

    Lincoln Savings and Loan. [CIA partner]. Based in Irvine, California and headed by notorious swindler Charles Keating, Jr., involved in laundering funds for the Iran-contra scandal.

    Lone Star Cement Corporation. [CIA partner]. Based in Stamford, Connecticut and linked to the Bush family, provided corporate cover for CIA officers operating abroad. Involved in the Iran-contra scandal.

    Mary Carter Paint Company. [CIA front]. A money-laundering operation for the CIA. Involved in casinos in the Bahamas.

    Monsanto. [CIA partner]. The firm contracted with former CIA official Cofer Black’s Total Intelligence Solutions (TIS), a subsidiary of the CIA-connected Blackwater USA, later Xe Services, to monitor animal rights groups, anti-genetically modified (GM) food activists, and other groups opposed to Monsanto’s agri-business operations worldwide.

    National Enquirer. [CIA partner]. The tabloid’s founder, Generoso (Gene) Pope, Jr., worked for the CIA’s psychological warfare unit and the agency’s Italy branch in 1950. In 1952, Pope acquired The New York Enquirer broadsheet and transformed it into a tabloid, renaming it The National Enquirer. This transformation bore the imprimatur of the CIA’s Operation MOCKINGBIRD media influence program.

    Newsweek. [CIA partner]. Magazine reporters and stringers fed information to the CIA. Newsweek’s stringers in southeastern Europe and the Far East were CIA agents. When Newsweek was bought by The Washington Post Company in 1961, cooperation between the magazine and the CIA increased. It was a participant in the CIA’s Operation MOCKINGBIRD media influence program. Much of the staff of Newsweek was absorbed into a new online publication, The Daily Beast, which continues to disseminate CIA-influenced articles. See Washington Post.

    Nieman Foundation. [CIA partner]. Located at Harvard University, the foundation awarded Nieman Fellowships, some on behalf of the CIA, for foreign journalists to study at Harvard. The journalists were subjected to CIA recruitment efforts prior to their returning to their home countries.

    Pamela Martin & Associates. [CIA partner], Escort firm run by Deborah Jeane Palfrey, the so-called “DC Madam.” During her 2008 trial for mail fraud, Palfrey attempted to invoke the Classified Information Procedures Act in order to discuss her relationship with the CIA. The U.S. Court refused Palfrey’s request and she was convicted and later said to have committed suicide before her sentencing hearing in Washington, DC. One of her clients was Randall Tobias, the head of the CIA-connected USAID. Another was Louisiana Republican senator David Vitter.

    Paris Review. [CIA front]. Literary magazine edited by George Plimpton. Published works by Jack Kerouac and Samuel Beckett. The magazine’s co-founder, Peter Matthiessen, relied on his affiliation with the magazine as his CIA cover.

    Quaker Oats Company. [CIA partner]. Worked with the CIA and Atomic Energy Commission to place trace amounts of radiation in breakfast cereal served to boys at the Fernald School for the mentally retarded in Waltham, Massachusetts.

    Radio Corporation of America. [CIA partner]. Provided corporate cover for CIA officers operating abroad, particularly in Iran, Philippines, Japan, and West Germany. Provided technical assistance to CIA-financed clandestine and propaganda radio stations worldwide, including Radio Free Europe. RCA founder David Sarnoff was a major supporter of CIA operations, including propaganda dissemination around the world. RCA chairman and chief executive officer Thornton F. Bradshaw was active in the operations of the CIA-linked American Ditchley Foundation.

    Reily Coffee Company. [CIA partner]. Also known as William B. Reily Coffee Company and based in New Orleans, this company employed Lee Harvey Oswald and a number of other U.S. government employees, many of whom were suspected CIA officers.

    Robert M. Mullen Company. [CIA proprietary]. A Washington, DC public relations firm, it was used as a front for CIA activities. E. Howard Hunt, the CIA agent, worked for Robert Mullen when he was arrested in the break-in of the Democratic National Committee headquarters at the Watergate Hotel in Washington in 1972. The Senate Watergate Committee reported that “the Mullen and Company has maintained a relationship with the Central Intelligence Agency since its incorporation in 1959. It provided covers for agents in Europe (Stockholm), Latin America (Mexico City), and the Far East (Singapore) at the time of the Watergate break-in.”

    Rockefeller Foundation. [CIA partner]. Used by the CIA to direct scholarships and grants to the Third World and Eastern Europe. Rockefeller Foundation money was funneled to the American Committee for a United Europe (ACUE), created in 1948. The chairman of ACUE was OSS chief William J. Donovan and the vice chairman was Allen Dulles. One of ACUE’s board members was Walter Bedell Smith, the first CIA director.

    Summa Corporation. [CIA partner]. Owned by Howard Hughes, Summa is believed to have skimmed gambling profits from the Sands, Desert Inn, Frontier, Silver Slipper, Castaways, and Landmark casinos in Las Vegas and Harold’s Club in Reno for the CIA and the Mafia. Provided financial cover for the CIA’s Glomar Explorer project.

    Teneo Intelligence. [CIA partner]. Branch of Teneo Holdings, which is headquartered in New York. Teneo Holdings’s intelligence branch includes former CIA officials. Teneo is closely linked to former President Bill Clinton and Hillary Clinton. Teneo Intelligence has offices in New York, London, Rome, Brussels, Dubai, Bogota, New Delhi, and Tokyo.

    Texas Commerce Bank (TCB). [CIA partner]. Houston-based bank founded by the family of James Baker III. Texas Commerce Bank was used to provide commercial cover for CIA agents. After serving as vice president for Texas Commerce Bank in Caracas from 1977 to 1979, Jeb Bush joined his father’s presidential campaign in 1980. Serving with Bush on the campaign was Robert Gambino, the CIA deputy director of security who gave Bush his orientation brief at Langley in 1977.

    Kenneth Lay, the chairman of Enron, which had its own links to the CIA, served on the board of Texas Commerce Bank. Texas Commerce Bank was acquired by Chemical Bank in 1987.

    The bank provided major loans to Howard Hughes’s Summa Corporation. See Summa Corporation.

    United Fruit Company [CIA partner]. Involved in 1954 CIA overthrow of Jacobo Arbenz government in Guatemala. Published the Latin America Report, a publication that was a CIA front used for clandestine activities. The CIA transferred weapons to United Fruit employees in Guatemala who were involved in undermining the Arbenz government. The joint CIA-United Fruit plan was code named OPERATION FORTUNE. Company provided an airfield in Guatemala for the CIA’s training of Cuban exiles for the Bay of Pigs invasion of Cuba.

    U.S. Rubber Company. [CIA partner]. Headquartered in Naugatuck, Connecticut and later called Uniroyal, provided corporate cover to CIA officers operating abroad. Included those operating under the cover of the Dominion Rubber Company of Canada, a subsidiary of U.S. Rubber Company.

    U.S. Youth Council (USYC). [CIA front]. Founded in 1945 and based in New York. Some 90 percent of its funds came from the CIA. USYC received funding from the Foundation for Youth and Student Affairs (FYSA), a CIA front. The USYC was composed of American Youth Hostels, Camp Fire Girls, 4-H, American Unitarian Youth, National Catholic Welfare Conference, National Students Assembly, YMCA and YWCA.

    Wackenhut. [CIA contractor]. Wackenhut, a Palm Beach Gardens, Florida-based security firm, stood accused of providing the CIA with specialized services around the world, including Chile, Greece, and El Salvador. Its Venezuelan branch, Wackenhut Venezolana, C.A., was accused in 2002 of involvement in the CIA’s coup against President Hugo Chavez. William Casey served as Wackenhut’s outside counsel before becoming CIA director in 1981.

    Wackenhut eventually merged into the global security firm G4S.

    Washington Post. [CIA partner]. The Washington Post was part of the CIA’s Operation MOCKINGBIRD, the agency’s media influence project. Post publisher Phil Graham was a close friend and associate of MOCKINGBIRD chief Frank Wisner, Sr. and CIA director Allen Dulles. Wisner assisted Graham in acquiring The Washington Times-Herald and WTOP radio, creating a sizable CIA-influenced media operation in the nation’s capital.

    W. R. Grace. [CIA partner]. Provided corporate cover to CIA officers operating abroad, particularly in Latin America. Provided donations to CIA front foundations.

  • News story about Madsen's book via The Justice Integrity Project



  •           $10,000 REWARD: Missing Person / Cold Case via Integrated Security Services @GoIntegrated         



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  • FLASHBACK: Video - Widow Pressed for Answers 42 years ago


  • Brief highlights of Caporino case:

    Excerpts from

  • more COOL JUSTICE

  • Chapter 4

    *

    Did Gabe Caporino just disappear or were hidden forces at play? AT

    *

    Gabe Caporino, a 40-year-old corporate executive from Westchester, NY, never returned to his wife and two teenage daughters after a business trip in 1974. The night he disappeared, Gabe Caporino spoke with his wife and daughters, asking about a school parents' night and confirming a dinner date with friends for the weekend.

    *

    There isn’t much of a trail for Gabe Caporino, but we know a good bit of what police did and did not do in the crucial days following his disappearance on Thursday, March 7, 1974. We also know some of what his employer, the General Foods corporation, did and did not do.

    *

    Under pressure from Gabe Caporino’s wife, Grace, now a retired teacher and recognized Holocaust scholar, General Foods sent a team to New Orleans over the weekend. One of them, Bill Bevans of the personnel department, snatched Gabe Caporino’s briefcase from his hotel room. The other GF team members were security director Jack Edward Ison, who had been an FBI agent for nine years; and White Plains, NY police detective James Lynch.

    “Our chief of security Jack Ison will ... take over this investigation,” GF personnel director Frank Dorito told Grace Caporino.

    Indeed, he did.

    On Sunday, March 10, 1974, Ison and his colleagues met privately with New Orleans police, barring members of the Caporino family. This crucial meeting presaged, if it did not predestine, the shocking and abysmal refusal of the New Orleans Police Department to follow up on basic and compelling leads, including the forgery of Gabe Caporino's credit card four days after he was reported missing. This forgery was ultimately documented by the FBI crime lab. Significantly, a Sears employee who witnessed three individuals using Gabe’s credit card recanted after a visit by New Orleans police ...

    ... Officer Roma Kent, who went on to work as a federal public defender, got the clerk to change his story ...

    *

    CBS producer Barbara Gordon, on assignment in 1974, put it this way: “The New Orleans Police Department is holding hands with General Foods and there is a cover-up down here.”

    The Gabe Caporino case was the subject of a CBS documentary produced by Gordon and reported by Chris Borgen, a retired New York City narcotics detective. The program aired beginning in May 1974 on the show Eye On New York. It was rebroadcast in New York and several times throughout the country on local affiliates – but not in New Orleans.

    As the air date neared, Borgen told Grace Caporino the reporting team received threats that GF might pull advertising from CBS. Borgen recounted the phone call from a GF public relations staffer: “This documentary is not in our best interests. We have a significant advertising budget with CBS.”

    *



    New Orleans police ... reported the discovery of Gabe Caporino’s rental car in a way that could not have occurred.

    His rented car was found abandoned about 10 days later in front of a school by Spain and [N.]Ramparts streets with the keys stuck outside the vehicle in the door lock. Police officers told me a car in this location with the keys outside the vehicle might have lasted there up to an hour. Additionally, any fingerprints left in or on the car were wiped off.

    “It is certainly not the kind of place where a new car would sit for a week with the keys in the door,” said Gabe Caporino’s nephew Anthony Emma, who made two trips to New Orleans in 1974. “Certainly not the kind of place a new car would sit even locked up without being disturbed for a week ... I always found that hard to believe.”



    *

    As time went on and the Caporino family struggled to survive, General Foods appealed the awarding of benefits to the widow and children multiple times. At one of the hearings, Jack Edward Ison admitted he was the source of the smears about Gabe Caporino in law enforcement files.

    A hearing officer asked Ison: “How do you know this about Mr. Caporino?”

    “Just things you hear people say,” Ison responded. He was not pressed to elaborate.

    In a particularly disturbing incident on March 16, 1974 – the day that would have been Gabe Caporino’s 41st birthday – family, friends and neighbors gathered at the home in Yorktown Heights. Ison called Grace Caporino. She told Ison family and friends did not want her to be alone on that day. Ison paused and said: “Well, if Gabe has any heart, surely he'll call you on his birthday. Bye, I’ve got to go.”

    *

    October, 2011. NEW ORLEANS, LA – Thirty seven years ago – with several police officers crowding her – Grace Caporino briefly touched and read a number of pages in a 3-inch-high stack of reports about her missing husband. After a few minutes, they forced her to leave. Today, the New Orleans Police Department still doesn’t want to know or hear anything about the Gabe Caporino case – or the reports ... *

    The current New Orleans police superintendent, Ronal Serpas, ignored two certified letters she sent him last year ...

    The New Orleans Police Department – notorious as perhaps the most corrupt and incompetent in U.S. history – has routinely engaged in public executions of civilians. The coroner tends to call these homicides slips and falls or accidents, even when someone’s face and teeth are kicked in and various body parts have hemorrhaged. Officers have worked as cocaine dealers on the job, hired hitmen to kill civilians, stolen from car dealers and held up liquor stores in uniform. Officers have been heard on police scanners saying: “Is he dead yet? No. Kill him now. String him up by the balls.”

    A short list of recent convictions includes two officers who beat and kicked a local man to death, then covered it up. In the infamous Danzgier bridge trial, also this year, five current and former officers were found guilty of shooting six civilians – killing two of them – and covering it up. Those local citizens were walking to a grocery store.

    Civilians filming police assaulting civilians are routinely charged with inciting a riot. After police shot and killed unarmed trombone player Joe Williams, returning from a jazz funeral in 2004, officers broke up a memorial service for the popular member of the Hot 8 Brass Band. Local attorney Mary Howell told the PBS show Frontline police advised her that “merely having a video camera or camera in a situation like this where the police are interacting with the community was considered to be inciting a riot.”

    After Hurricane Kartina, the National Rifle Associaton sued New Orleans Police for stripping law-abiding citizens of their ability to defend themselves. “They just stole people’s guns and weapons,” Howell said.

    The unofficial body count from Hurriance Katrina is upwards of 1,500. “We do not have a clear understanding of how many people were shot and killed by the New Orleans Police Department,” Howell told Frontline.

    Of course, there are also many officers who keep their oath to protect and serve no matter what the risk from criminals and buffoons in the streets or among their ranks and supervisors ...

    *

    August, 2012

    ... the New Orleans Police Department actually admitted it had failed to comply with the Louisiana public records law. This happened through a series of depositions of detectives and other personnel [in a Freedom of Information lawsuit in Parish Court] ... “Nobody has gone digging through those files specifically looking for a file relative to the disappearance of Gabe Caporino, have they?” The question was posed by ... attorney, Brett Prendergast.

    “No, sir,” Detective Gwen Guggenheim responded.

    ... A supervised search of the NOPD “storage area” [revealed the following from] ... a dimly-lit and musty room on the second floor by the NOPD parking garage.

    Most of the boxes of files were covered with layers of grime and old insulation. He had to move evidence including sections of a chain-link fence to get at the boxes.

    The files dated from 1890 to the present. Besides homicide cases, there were also files for juvenile offenses and sex crimes.

    There was not a single missing persons file in storage ...

    ... As recently as 1995, then-Police Superintendent Richard Pennington had a detective review the Caporino case and all the reports and documents. Now, the official word is, the file does not exist – just as missing persons don't officially exist ...

    *

    Retired General Foods investigator Emil Monda, reached ... on the West Coast, said about the Caporino case: “We always thought there was foul play, but never came up with anything.”

    Monda said he did not know why the New Orleans Police failed to follow leads including the forgery of Caporino’s credit card ...


              Support your local library        



    Special thanks to Sprague (CT) Public Library Director Chris Kolar, staffers and volunteers, who hosted a lively discussion on judicial and political corruption Sept. 22 ...

    Here is a 2014 interview with Kolar regarding her service and the library's renovation, via The Norwich Bulletin:






  • Kolar Q & A







  • Kolar said more than 80 library patrons and guests participated in the Sept. 22 event, which focused on patterns of suspects having their hooks into cops, judges and prosecutors.



    Cases cited via the books more COOL JUSTICE and
    Law and Justice in Everyday life included the hit-run death of Kevin Showalter in New London and the disappearance / homicide of Mary Badaracco in the northwest Connecticut town of Sherman. The group also discussed police and prosecutorial misconduct, the Bonnie Foreshaw case and the use of teams of private detectives to dig up dirt on cops, doctors, a prosecutor and children in the Woody Allen sex assault case.


    Best Intro Ever by a Librarian

    Kolar opened the evening with a few short videos:








  • Foreshaw case in 50 seconds
























  • What is more COOL JUSTICE?

















  • Also, the beginning of this video via Huffington Post:








  • Yale's Bogus Woody Allen report









  • Then, Kolar said, "Our guest speaker wandered in off the street tonight and needed someone to talk to ... "


  • Showalter case background



  • Badaracco case background


  • As I visit various libraries around the state, my appreciation grows for the service and capabilities of our hard-working librarians.

    -- AT






  • more COOL JUSTICE








  •           EU lawmaker condemns Amarnath terror attack        

    Brussels: European Parliament`s Chairman of the Delegation for Relations with India Geoffrey Van Orden on Friday condemned the July 10 terror attack on Amarnath pilgrims and called on Pakistan to cooperate with India in bringing the perpetrators to justice.

    "This is a most atrocious crime which follows a series of terrorist attacks and other provocations designed to destabilise the political situation in Jammu & Kashmir," he said in a press release.

    "We stand resolutely with India in her fight against terrorism and hope that those responsible will rapidly be brought to justice. We call upon the government of Pakistan to cooperate in this and to enhance its efforts to suppress terrorists and extremists and develop peaceful relations with India," said Van Orden who is a British Member of the European Parliament.

    Seven pilgrims were killed and 19 injured in the attack.

    Section: 
    Yes
    News Source: 
    Facebook Instant Article: 
    No

              Hit-and-Run Chronology, Grand Jury Report & Follow-up Columns, Re; Library Discussion 9-22-16        

    Open
    the Showalter File

  • Hartford Courant Editorial




  • Cool Justice Editor's Note:
    This post is primarily for patrons and guests of the Sprague Public Library, who might participate in a discussion on Thursday at 6:30 p.m. A link to announcements of that event is at the very bottom of this post. Thanks for reading, AT.


    Via
    Law And Justice In Everyday Life


    F. Lee Bailey on Law and Justice in Everyday Life and the Showalter case:

    This book - which is mainly about public officials, police, judges and lawyers either shaming or shining - is a good read. Many of the stories stand alone, like slices of life. Others will appear early in the book, with follow-up chapters later. The crown jewel, in my view, is his handling of the strange death of Kevin Showalter, who was slammed 50 feet down the road in New London, Connecticut on Christmas Eve 1973 while changing a tire on the traffic side of a parked car. For many years, Andy Thibault dogged a case which public officials seemed determined to let die, despite the presence of a likely suspect. He tells me his mentor, John Peterson, broke the case open and then handed over the torch. Joined by the victim's mother, Lucille, who revealed herself as a determined but delightful woman as the story unfolds, Andy beats up on police, prosecutors, judges and governors until finally there is action. Spurred on by an appointment hastened by Gov. Ella Grasso, Judge Joseph Dannehy conducted one of the most brilliant and thorough investigations I have ever seen. If this book were only about the Showalter case, it would be worth the price.

    APPENDIX

    THE SHOWALTER CHRONOLOGY – A FOUR YEAR SEARCH FOR JUSTICE


    New London, Ct.

    1973

    December 24

    Approximately 11:10 to 11:20 p.m. Kevin B. Showalter is killed. Car leaves scene. Only taillights observed by a neighbor.

    There is much confusion. Mr. Showalter had been changing a tire on his companion’s car. His companion Debra Emilyta, was sitting about six feet away from the car on a stone wall.

    Ms. Emilyta told police she heard a thud, but did not see the car which struck Mr. Showalter. She said she ran across the road, a well-lit section of Pequot Avenue near Plant Street, before seeing Mr. Showalter’s body.

    Mr. Showalter’s body was thrown 22 feet from the believed point of impact, onto a sidewalk near a large tree. The police report prepared that night noted the deceased’s shoes were found 110 feet apart. Part of a leg bone was found 75 feet away.

    Michael Buscetto of Mike’s Auto Body gives police body putty, apparently from the car which struck Mr. Showalter. The putty never made it to the police station. Det. Lt. Konstanty T. Bucko later denies its existence.

    December 25

    Autopsy performed. No trace of alcohol or drugs found. Cause of death listed as lacerated liver and broken neck.

    In efforts to console Mrs. Showalter, friends, neighbors, witnesses and officials volunteer information about the accident. She quietly listens for about six weeks, taking it for granted that police are acting on the same information. December 26

    New London police begin full-scale search for red car.

    1974

    February 6

    FBI report describes paint particles on Mr. Showalter’s clothing as “racing green” or “forest green” used on 1968 Chrysler products.

    February 7

    Mrs. Showalter notes she had the impression local police were not actively pursuing the case. She began interviewing those persons who came to her voluntarily and made a written record of her findings.

    During the next three weeks, Mrs. Showalter spends much of her time making telephone calls and knocking on doors. She and her youngest son Craig, then 14, visited a number of local auto dealers and garages. She said in most cases they were told police had not made any inquiries of them.

    February 28

    New London police conduct first interview with Harvey N. Mallove, the downtown merchant and former mayor and city councilor. Mallove stated he drove by Pequot Avenue near Plant Street shortly before 11:15 p.m. on Christmas Eve 1973. Seven people near the accident scene contradict what he said he saw.

    April 20

    Mrs. Showalter writes to State’s Atty. Edmund J. O’Brien, requesting a one-man grand jury investigation into her son’s death. O’Brien never responds.

    On the same day, Atty. Thomas Bishop, representing Mrs. Showalter as the administratix of Mr. Showalter’s estate, asks Atty. Joseph Moukawsher to conduct a coroner’s inquest of the hit-run death.

    April 23

    Moukawsher agrees to conduct inquest but must confer with New London police before setting date.

    June 4

    Mrs. Showalter writes to New London Police Chief John J. Crowley, asking for a progress report on the investigation by his force. Crowley neither acknowledges receipt of letter nor responds. Copies of letter were sent to City Manager C. Francis Driscoll, and Abraham Kirshenbaum, then chairman of the City Council’s Public Safety Committee.

    June 10

    Mrs. Showalter asks Superior Court Judge Angelo Santaniello to call for a grand jury investigation.

    June 24

    Santaniello notes Moukawsher has agreed to conduct coroner’s inquest. He tells Mrs. Showalter, “If it appears that during any stage of this proceeding that any further intercession is necessary, appropriate action will be taken at that time.”

    July 2

    Mrs. Showalter writes to City Manager C. Francis Driscoll, asking for a report from his office assessing the police department’s handling of the case. She also asks for a reply to her June 4 letter to Police Chief Crowley.

    July 9

    Driscoll tells Crowley to prepare a complete report for Mrs. Showalter.

    July 10

    Bucko completes report on fatal accident.

    July 25

    Driscoll sends Mrs. Showalter Bucko’s report. The report said Mr. Showalter’s body was in the road, but the ambulance crew which took Mr. Showalter to Lawrence Memorial Hospital said they found him on the sidewalk several feet away. No police officer ever saw the body at the scene since the first officer arrived as the body was being placed in the ambulance.

    Bucko says paint particles from a 1968 Plymouth at the U.S. Naval Submarine Base in Groton are similar to those found on Mr. Showalter’s clothing, but the same paint is used on any 1968 Chrysler product.

    Bucko also says a piece of metal Mrs. Showalter found near the accident scene is in the detective bureau. When Mrs. Showalter first offered the metal to police, they refused to sign a receipt for it.

    August 6

    Mrs. Showalter writes to Driscoll regarding Bucko’s report. She lists six pages of comments on allegedly “serious omissions” and “strictly opinion judgments” by Bucko.

    Mrs. Showalter also writes to Chief State’s Atty. Joseph Gormley, asking him to send a representative to the coroner’s inquest. She includes copies of correspondence with local officials and Bucko’s report.

    August 9

    Mrs. Showalter requests a meeting with the City Council’s Public Safety Committee.

    August 15

    Bucko updates report, at request of city manager Driscoll.

    Bucko said of the body location, “the position he (Mr. Showalter) was found in at the scene of the accident, in my opinion, would not help in solving this matter.” Erroneous on the report is the position of the car jack which is shown on the front bumper. The car Mr. Showalter was working on, a Ford Pinto, had to be jacked from the side of the vehicle.

    Omitted from the report is the location of a car mat seen to the rear of the car and the spare tire Mr. Showalter never got to put on the car.

    August 20

    Gormley writes to Mrs. Showalter, telling her the local police investigation “has proceeded smoothly,” and there is “no reason for this office to initiate its own investigation.”

    August 28

    The Public Safety Committee of the New London City Council meets in closed session for one hour to discuss the hit-run death. Chief Crowley requested the closed session. He said there is evidence that could jeopardize future action.

    Mrs. Showalter submitted a 12-page statement for the meeting, but did not attend.

    Crowley said the case is not closed and it appears an arrest may be made.

    August 31

    Mallove submits official statement to New London police.

    November, 1974

    After being postponed several times, the coroner’s inquest hears testimony from 50 persons. No findings issued.

    1975

    January 24

    A state police detective participating in the federal grand jury probe of the city police department has told one of its patrolmen they identified the driver of the car which struck and killed Mr. Showalter on Christmas Eve, 1973.

    “We know who killed the Showalter kid, how come you don’t?” the detective was quoted in The Norwich Bulletin as saying.

    March 19-22

    The Bulletin, in a four-part series, shows:

    - Eyewitnesses and what New London police called “near witnesses” drastically differed in their accounts of the accident.

    - Microscopic paint particles found on Mr. Showalter’s clothing on which police based their search may not have been left by the vehicle which struck him.

    - Evidence entrusted to police officers at the scene has never been seen since.

    - A claim by police that it would cost as much as $1,200 to trace vehicles possible involved in the mishap was declared false by the state Motor Vehicle Department.

    The Bulletin, when preparing the series of articles, made repeated efforts to discuss the case with police officials but Lt. K.T. Bucko, who headed the case, on the advice of then Police Chief John Crowley, would not.

    April 3 State police conduct an extensive door-to-door inquiry in the Pequot Avenue region. State police have been looking into the case as part of a federal grand jury investigation into alleged corruption within the city force.

    July 12

    The state of Connecticut offers a $2,000 reward for information leading to the arrest and conviction of the person responsible for the hit-run death of Mr. Showalter. A total of $3,000 is now being offered. Classmates and friends of Mr. Showalter’s have already collected $1,000.

    July 21

    A community effort by friends and classmates raises the reward to $5,000.

    November 8

    The transcript of the coroner’s inquest of the hit-run death conducted nearly a year ago has yet to be typed, Coroner Joseph Moukawsher confirms. He said he wants to review the transcript even though he believes his six-day long inquest did not establish any guilt in the case. He said he has not spoken with the court reporter assigned to the case since the early summer.

    December 10

    Mrs. Showalter writes to State’s Atty. C. Robert Satti, requesting a one-man grand jury investigation. No response.

    1976

    January 6

    Satti refuses to confirm or deny the existence of Mrs. Showalter’s request. Mrs. Showalter has also asked Satti’s office to ascertain the location of recorded tapes made during the coroner’s inquest.

    January 9

    Mrs. Showalter sends a special delivery letter to Satti asking for a response to the December 10 request. No response.

    February 19

    In a feature article, also carried statewide by the Associated Press, The Bulletin profiles Mrs. Showalter on page one.

    Some public officials regard her as a persistent nuisance, someone to be ignored and sidestepped, but Mrs. Lucille M. Showalter will not breathe easily until they tell her who killed her son, Bulletin reporter Fred Vollono wrote.

    “The official comment seems to be there is nothing to it,” Mrs. Showalter said. “It is just the ramblings of a grief-stricken mother. But there are many people who urge me to go on. They say, ‘Lucille, if you stop, then nothing will ever be done.’”

    February 23

    Mrs. Showalter receives a letter of confession from an inmate at Somers state prison. The inmate said he was plagued by news accounts of the death. Every time he seems to forget the accident, the inmate said, he reads another news story.

    April 2

    Mrs. Showalter submits a third written request to Satti for a grand-jury probe. No response.

    May 6

    Common Pleas court Prosecutor Harold Dean quashes the only lead in the two and a half year old investigation, The Norwich Bulletin reports. The lead was the letter of confession written by the inmate at Somers Prison. State police arrested the inmate for harassment of the victim’s mother, Mrs. Showalter, to whom the letter was sent. Dean nolled the case and allowed it to be dismissed despite a prior meeting with state police when the significance of the arrest was discussed.

    State police did not believe the letter writer was responsible for the hit-run death, but they thought the letter contained possibly significant information. Dean said he was certain the accused had no knowledge of the case, because he was incarcerated when Mr. Showalter was killed.

    August 7 The day following the Bulletin’s report of Dean quashing the lead, Chief State’s Atty. Joseph Gormley says he had “no idea” why the lead “which very well could have led to something,” resulted in a dead end. Two state police officers had met with Gormley to discuss the letter of confession.

    August 6

    State police list the investigation into the killing of Mr. Showalter as “closed pending further development.” That classification came 31 days after Dean threw the harassment case out of court.

    August 30

    Mrs. Showalter again asks Superior Court Judge Angelo Santaniello to call for a one-man grand jury probe.

    September 1

    Mrs. Showalter publicly renews her efforts to have a one-man grand jury reopen the investigation into the hit-run killing of her son. In a statement sent to 22 media outlets, Mrs. Showalter says she made the appeal in an August 30 letter to Superior Court Judge Angelo Santaniello. She says she was asking the judge to “make good on a promise” he made to her in June 1974. Santaniello wrote in a June 24, 1974 letter, Superior Court intercession would be possible if the investigation required it.

    Santaniello said, “probably the proper person” to approach would be State’s Atty. C. Robert Satti. But Mrs. Showalter said she is ignoring Satti because he failed to respond to her December 1975 letter asking for the grand jury.

    September 23

    State’s Atty. C. Robert Satti says he needs another three weeks to review information on the killing of Mr. Showalter before deciding whether the investigation should be reopened or shelved.

    Satti says he had hoped to have the matter resolved by today, but the sinking of his 35-foot cabin cruiser two weeks ago, an unexpected report of crimes by New London police, and a new trial forced him behind schedule.

    November 23

    Mrs. Showalter turns to Governor Ella T. Grasso for help.

    “I cannot endure this loss of a beloved son in the midst of a governmental system that appears to neither act nor care,” Mrs. Showalter says in a letter to the governor.

    Mrs. Showalter says she is skeptical the New London County State’s Attorney’s review of the case will result in the one-man grand jury she has requested. Satti today said he is still reviewing transcripts of the Coroner’s Inquest and refused further comment.

    December 21

    Just three days before the third anniversary of the killing of Kevin B. Showalter, the state’s chief court administrator orders the city’s only unsolved hit-and-run case reopened.

    John P. Cotter signs an order creating a one-man jury to probe the death, renewing hopes that allegations of police bungling and mishandling of the case will be settled.

    “I can’t yet believe it,” says Mrs. Showalter, calling the action a “literal miracle.”

    Cotter, a justice on the state Supreme Court, selects retired Superior Court Judge Raymond J. Devlin to head the one-man grand jury.

    An attorney representing Mrs. Lucille M. Showalter also files a $600,000 lawsuit against the unnamed person(s) responsible for the killing of her son. Atty. Averum J. Sprecher of East Haddam says the suit is aimed at protecting Mrs. Showalter’s rights.

    “The action as I have filed it will definitively preserve her rights when the investigative bodies finally determine who killed the boy,” he said. The suit is aimed at heading off fears the state’s statute of limitations might preclude Mrs. Showalter from pursuing civil action if the killer is found.

    December 24

    Superior Court Judge Joseph F. Dannehy is ordered to replace State Referee Raymond J. Devlin as the one-man grand juror investigating Mr. Showalter’s death. Chief Court Administrator John P. Cotter says Judge Devlin had asked to be taken off the case because he was too busy with other duties, and would be unable to commute from his New Haven office.

    1977

    January 4

    Austin J. McGuigan, the special prosecutor assigned to the one-man grand jury probing the hit-run death of Mr. Showalter promises to pull “all the stops” in his investigation but says he needs help from the public to succeed.

    McGuigan has worked for the state for two years as the top investigator of organized crime. He appeals to anyone with information to call him confidentially.

    February 8

    State Police Commissioner Edward P. Leonard, as part of a last-resort effort, makes a personal appeal to area residents for information about the killing of Mr. Showalter. In a letter to the people who live near the Pequot Avenue site where Mr. Showalter died, Leonard asks for facts – “No matter how insignificant they may appear” – which might shed light on the car, the driver or the accident scene.

    Special Prosecutor McGuigan says police “had no suspects.” However, he says if a suspect is found police believe there is sufficient evidence to tie the person to the case.

    April 18

    Investigators say they feel confident the Showalter case will be solved.

    The new optimism comes after a public appeal netted more than 300 leads, new laboratory analysis of existing evidence, and an accounting of each of the more than 10,000 green Chrysler products registered in Eastern Connecticut when Mr. Showalter was killed.

    The new evidence means “there is a significant possibility the vehicle in question was not a green Chrysler,” Special Prosecutor Austin McGuigan says. While the investigators will not say what other color the car might have been, the evidence apparently opens new avenues for the investigation. Previously, other theories on who drove the death car, theories which have had some substantiation, were locked into the green Chrysler theory, police acknowledge.

    May 10

    State police investigators spend two and a half hours recreating and filming the Pequot Avenue death scene where Mr. Showalter was the victim of the hit and run.

    May 18

    State police again film and re-create death scene.

    June 22

    The Bulletin reports that one of the most intensive investigations in state police history, the probe into Mr. Showalter’s hit-run death, will be given to a one-man grand jury July 5 in Windham county Superior Court.

    Judge Joseph F. Dannehy, the grand juror, imposes a gag order on all investigators assigned to the case. Special Prosecutor McGuigan and 17 state police detectives had gathered evidence for the grand jury.

    June 23

    More than 50 persons will be subpoenaed and the scope of the probe will be expanded to include subsequent actions connected with the accident, The Bulletin reports.

    June 24

    Eleven New London police officers, including the top detective involved in the first of three investigations of the hit-run death, have been subpoenaed, The Bulletin reports.

    July 5

    The grand jury begins behind closed doors with testimony by New London Det. Lt. Konstanty T. Bucko.

    Outside, a television camera crew drips with sweat under the glare of a hot summer sun.

    Inside it is quiet and cool – almost like any other day. The state police detectives and reporters talk about golf, baseball and other summertime activities. Because of the gag order imposed by Judge Dannehy, they can’t talk about what is most on their minds, what has brought them all together – the unsolved hit-run death of Kevin B. Showalter.

    The session lasts about five hours and also includes testimony by Mrs. Showalter and Debra Emilyta, Mr. Showalter’s companion the night he died.

    Ms. Emilyta has been sitting on a wall about 6 feet from Mr. Showalter when he was killed. She told police she only heard the 20-year-old Mitchell College student struck, and did not see the car which struck him.

    July 6

    Witnesses include Michael Buscetto of Mike’s Arco in New London. What he identified as body putty, apparently from the car that struck and killed Mr. Showalter, has never been seen since police officers placed it in an envelope that night, according to sources.

    Ms. Emilyta concludes testimony.

    Also testifying are Dr. Robert Weller, members of his family, and a friend, who while returning home from church drove past Mr. Showalter as he was changing the tire. They were among the last persons to see Mr. Showalter alive.

    Other witnesses include Mrs. Ruth P. Hendel and Mrs. Charles (Shirley Pope) Alloway, her daughter.

    On Christmas Eve, 1973, Mrs. Hendel had just turned away from the window of her home on Pequot Avenue where she had been watching Mr. Showalter work on the Emilyta car. She heard the noise of the car striking Mr. Showalter and turning back quickly she caught a glimpse of the taillights. Her first impression of the fleeing southbound car was that it was bright-colored, possibly red.

    Mrs. Hendel continued to watch the accident scene as she telephoned Mrs. Alloway, the wife of a New London police officer.

    Arthur Adams of New London, a Mitchell College security guard and former state policeman, also testifies. Aside from Ms. Emilyta and the hit-run driver, Adams may have been one of the last persons to see Mr. Showalter alive.

    Adams saw Mr. Showalter working on the car and Ms. Emilyta sitting on the stone wall, swinging her legs. He observed the girl with a coat collar wrapped around her head, in conversation with Mr. Showalter, after the Weller party had driven by.

    Adams continued on his rounds towards the Montauk Avenue side of the campus. Sometime after 11 p.m., he saw an ambulance heading for the hospital and two police cars heading down Plant Street.

    July 7

    Some of the last persons who saw Mr. Showalter alive and one of the first who saw him dead testify.

    Six members of the Sitty family, who were celebrating Christmas Eve and occasionally watching Mr. Showalter change a tire from inside a house on Pequot Avenue, tell the grand jury what they knew about the case, Edmond Sitty had brought out a blanket and a corduroy coat to put over Mr. Showalter’s body after he had been struck and killed.

    A New London High School classmate of Mr. Showalter, Arthur Petrini, was a passenger in a car that passed the accident scene sometime after Mr. Showalter was killed and before the ambulance and police arrived. He also testified.

    July 12

    Witnesses included two firemen and a dispatcher, two nurses and an orderly, the New London County Medical Examiner, the first man to officially identify Mr. Showalter, and a woman who lives near the accident scene.

    Larry Grimes, a security guard who knew Mr. Showalter from Mitchell College, had made the preliminary identification at Lawrence and Memorial Hospitals, where he also worked. Mrs. Dorothy Bryson of Pequot Avenue, who came upon the accident scene, also testifies.

    July 13

    New London police officers pack the waiting room of the Windham County Courthouse. Of the 11 who were subpoenaed last month, at least seven are present.

    The 11 include Patrolmen Vincent McGrath, Steven Colonis, Thomas P. Bowes Jr., and Cpl. Joseph Chiapponne, all of whom were involved in the initial investigation. With the change of shift, Sgt. Joseph Jullarine, Patrolmen Richard West and Glenn Davis and Det. Sgt. Konstanty T. Bucko joined the probe. Bucko was off duty at the time.

    McGrath filed the motor vehicle report of the accident and the sketch on the report was by Bowes. Bucko took photographs of the scene and gathered evidence. His photographs may be the only ones taken. Bucko also went to the hospital and got the victim’s clothing, according to sources.

    Colonis, the first officer on the scene, apparently arrived as Mr. Showalter was being placed in the ambulance. He interviewed Ms. Emilyta and took her to the station to file a 13-sentence statement.

    There is some confusion of whether Colonis drove an unmarked police car that night. Sources say police made conflicting statements on that question.

    July 14

    Thomas Wainwright, who played tennis with Kevin Showalter at New London High, saw his lifeless body on a sidewalk on Pequot Avenue before an ambulance or police arrived, and is among those testifying today. Arthur Petrini, who testified last week, was a passenger in Wainwright’s car.

    Mr. and Mrs. Donald Wainwright, who were stopped by police after circling the scene in another auto, also testify.

    At least seven New London police officers are at the courthouse, but it is not known how many are testifying.

    July 19

    The grand jury shifts beyond reconstructions by “near witnesses,” as Sgt. Joseph Jullarine, now retired, testifies. He was the squad leader who reportedly conducted “an intensive investigation” for a red car during the 11:30 p.m. to 7:30 a.m. shift on Christmas Day 1973.

    July 20

    The grand jury investigators spend much of the day alone reviewing physical evidence and testimony. Only three witnesses – New London police who have already appeared during the proceedings – are present.

    July 21

    Det. Bucko appears for at least the fourth time in the nine days the grand jury has convened. The session begins at 10 a.m. and ends about 5:45 p.m., with his departure.

    A nurse’s aide who knelt by Mr. Showalter’s body, feeling for a pulse, also testifies, Sue Costello, who heard the report of an accident as she was leaving Lawrence and Memorial Hospitals in New London from her shift, had arrived on the scene before ambulance personnel and police.

    July 26

    The scope of the grand jury probe goes beyond Mr. Showlater’s death and runs smack into a crucial area of dispute with the appearance of New London police detective Walter Petchark.

    On Christmas Day 1973, with evidence already missing and news of Mr. Showalter’s death on the radio, Petchark reportedly received a call from former mayor Harvey N. Mallove. Mallove later told The Bulletin there was no truth to the report. But he allegedly told Petchark he thought he saw the accident the night before.

    Three city police detectives – Bucko, Petchark, and Carmello Fazzina – were present at the inquiry. They were followed by laboratory technicians from the FBI, who lent their expertise in the analysis of headlight glass possibly belonging to the death vehicle.

    July 27

    The former counsel for the estate of Mr. Showalter testifies. Atty. Thomas Bishop confirms his representation of the estate was severed in June 1974.

    Thomas and Donald Wainwright return for further testimony.

    July 28

    Witnesses include Mrs. S.F. Zimet of Ledyard. Mallove said he was visiting at her home on Christmas Eve 1973, left about 10:45 p.m., and was home in New London about half an hour later.

    Mrs. Zimet is accompanied by her attorney, L. Patrick Gray. Gray, like Bishop, is a member of the New London law firm Suissman, Shapiro, Wool, and Brennan.

    Other witnesses include New London city Manager C. Francis Driscoll and Elise Mallove, Mallove’s daughter. Miss Mallove was home for her Christmas vacation in 1973.

    The grand jury begins a four-week recess. More than 50 persons were called during the first 12 days of the inquiry.

    August 30

    New London police investigators and a newspaper editor who has followed their unsolved hit-run death case for three years are among the witnesses.

    Retired Police Chief John Crowley and Det. Lt. K.T. Bucko, who refused repeated pleas by The Bulletin in March of 1975 to discuss the death of Kevin B. Showalter, gives testimony – as did the paper’s managing editor, John C. Peterson.

    Peterson testifies for three hours.

    August 31

    The attorney who conducted a coroner’s inquest into Mr. Showalter’s death, the results of which have never met public scrutiny, is the first witness today. Atty. Joseph Moukwasher, who heard testimony from 50 witnesses during six days in September and November of 1974, is one of the few persons familiar with the substance of that investigation.

    It took more than two years for the transcripts of the hearings to be typed and submitted to State’s Atty. C. Robert Satti.

    State Police Sgt. Donald Crouch, who in 1974 and 1975 worked for the federal grand jury investigating alleged corruption in the New London force, also testifies. Other witnesses included Rosemary Benson and Carol James.

    September 1

    Physical exhibits appear to outnumber witnesses in the 15th day of proceedings. Two state police technicians from the crime lab in Bethany carry satchels concealing evidence into the closed courtroom. One exhibit is a light colored automobile fender, which was dented and streaked.

    September 2

    Det. Edward Pickett of the New London County State’s Attorney’s office, who helped administer a lie detector test to Ms. Emilyta, testifies. Ms. Emilyta passed the test.

    Another detective, private investigator Joe Harris, is also called. A former Waterford police sergeant, he worked on the case for a brief time, on his own.

    Other witnesses in a short session include State Police Sgt. Charles Trotter, a principal investigator in the federal grand jury probe of the New London city police.

    September 12

    Two persons who saw Mr. Showalter on Christmas Eve 1973, hours before he was killed testify.

    Ramona Ricci, a coworker of Mr. Showalter’s at a Waterford discotheque, attended one of two parties Mr. Showalter had planned to go to after work that night. Nancy Wicksham, who also testified, had joined friends that holiday evening at the club.

    September 18

    Mallove says his status as a suspect in the case is “nothing new.” During testimony in a New Jersey courtroom, Connecticut State Police revealed Mallove is a prime suspect in the hit-run case. The testimony concerned refusal by two New Jersey men to comply with a subpoena issued by the one-man grand jury. Trooper Charles Wargat also testified he was told the two men repaired Mallove’s car on Christmas Eve or Christmas Day 1973.

    Mallove tells The Bulletin he did not know the men and never had a car repaired at their shop on Reed Street in New London. He says he didn’t kill Mr. Showalter and doesn’t know anything about anybody who did.

    September 19

    One of the two men who testified with immunity today has said in a published account he has no knowledge of the case and denied any car was repaired in his New London shop on Christmas Eve 1973.

    Walter String Jr. made those comments in the New Jersey Courier Post. He and his son, Walter String III, had been ordered to appear today by a New Jersey judge, after refusing to comply with a subpoena.

    Among the dozen or so witnesses are New London city police Sgt. Donald Sloan and Cpl. Charles Alloway. They took the first full statement from Ms. Emilyta, five days after the accident.

    September 26

    Darlene Barnes, a friend of Mr. Showalter who patronized the Waterford discotheque where he worked, is among the witnesses today. Ms. Barnes was also one of the 50 witnesses during the coroner’s inquest of 1974.

    October 3

    Larry Grimes testifies again. The Mitchell College security guard who made the first identification of Mr. Showalter at Lawrence and Memorial Hospitals, was also at the courthouse on July 12, and Sept. 26.

    The grand jury will be in recess until October 17. It has convened 20 times since July 5 and heard about 90 witnesses.

    October 11

    Judge Dannehy says published reports that Mallove is a prime suspect in the case “couldn’t bother me in the least.”

    “They (the newspapers) are free to speculate if they wish,” Dannehy says. “I am not concerned with their claimed right to freedom of expression.

    I think that sometimes their attitude is to publish and be damned, but they don’t bother me.”

    “Why don’t you wait” for the grand jury report? Dannehy asked.

    October 17

    The sales manager of a New London auto firm who said he has sold a number of cars to the family of a suspect in the hit-run case testifies.

    In 1970, Peter Emmanuel Sr. of New London Motors sold a Lincoln Continental to Harvey N. Mallove, whom state police have identified as a suspect in the Christmas Eve, 1973 death. A compact car was among the other autos the New London firm sold to Mallove.

    State police were looking for a green Chrysler product when they first questioned New London motors personnel, Emmanuel said before he testified. But the firm didn’t sell Mallove such a vehicle, which police had believed was the death car, he added.

    October 24

    The grand jury does not convene today because the investigators were not ready to proceed, Judge Dannehy said. He said he plans to conduct several more sessions before adjourning to write the final report, but did not specify.

    November 14

    The grand jury meets for its first regular session since October 17 and hears one witness. The witness, Gary Jordan of New London, said he was dating Elise Mallove on Christmas Eve 1973.

    Sources say the grand jury conducted at least one special session since October 17, but it was not known who testified.

    November 21

    State police continue working long and irregular hours probing Mr. Showalter’s death as they re-create the hit-run scene on Pequot Avenue near Plant Street for at least the third time.

    November 29

    The man whom state police have said they consider a prime suspect in New London’s only unsolved hit-run death has his day in court.

    Harvey N. Mallove testifies for about four hours before the secret grand jury probing Mr. Showalter’s death. Atty. Leo J. McNamara accompanies Mallove to the Windham County Courthouse.

    Mallove says he was one of a number of persons who drove by the accident scene shortly before or after Mr. Showalter was killed. But a four-part series by The Bulletin in March of 1975 showed Mallove saw a scene that seven other persons said could not have taken place.

    Mallove passed the accident scene within a minute or two after an ambulance call was logged. His statement to New London police – dated eight months later – conflicts with accounts of seven persons at the scene or looking out their windows seconds after Mr. Showalter was struck.

    Mr. Showalter was struck by a car as he changed a tire on a friend’s parked Ford Pinto, on a well-lit section of Pequot Avenue near Plant Street.

    In his statement, Mallove said he saw an automobile parked at an angle in front of the Pinto. None of the seven persons saw any car stopped at the scene immediately after the victim was hit according to the July 10, 1974 report by New London Det. Lt. Konstanty T. Bucko.

    Mallove’s vivid description of a middle-aged man talking with a girl near the car also conflicts with statements by the seven persons.

    In his statement, Mallove said he assumed the man was a member of the police department. But Bucko claims in the July 10 report that Mallove told him the talking to the girl was “NOT” a policeman.

    Bucko’s report also claims Mallove learned on Christmas Day 1974 that “a man had been killed and he remarked to some people that he saw the body.” But Bucko continued to report that after Mallove viewed photographs of the scene he realized what he mistook for a body was a floor mat. In his statement, Mallove said he saw a “flat object which I assumed was a blanket or a mat.”

    In his August 31, 1974 statement, Mallove said, “Seeing no trouble, accident, or any evidence of anything out of place…I continued on my way home.”

    In the July 10, 1974 report, Bucko claims; “Mr. Mallove stated he was going to stop because he realized there had been an accident.”

    Mallove has told The Bulletin that Bucko misquoted him.

    December 7

    The calling of witnesses ends with Mallove’s second appearance.

    The proceedings included a film screening, apparently of the death scene as re-created by state police.

    After the 35 minute screening, Special Prosecutor McGuigan and Judge Dannehy questioned Mallove for about 40 minutes. That was the bulk of the afternoon session.

    The question of whether indictments should be handed down in New London’s only unsolved hit-run death now rests with Judge Dannehy.

    After 24 sessions and more than 100 witnesses, Dannehy said the next step for the grand jury is the final report on who killed Kevin B. Saltwater.

    1978

    Feb. 17 Report filed.

    Feb. 22

    Report made public.

  • THE DANNEHY REPORT


  • SHOWALTER COVERUP COLUMNS

    Chapter 1

    Law and Justice in Everyday Life

    Cover-Up In New London

    Hit-And-Run Continues To Mock Justice


    Sept. 4, 2000

    If Connecticut Chief State’s Attorney John Bailey wants to bring closure to cold cases, here’s one from New London that should top the list: The Showalter hit-and-run cover-up is a dark chapter in Connecticut history, a tale more appropriate for a Third World country.

    And yet, only one thing bothers former New London County State’s Attorney C. Robert Satti about the Showalter case: that it was investigated at all.

    Satti, now retired, made the point again and again, most recently this year. Satti’s complaint, made during the wake of the late state police Detective George Ryalls, was that Ryalls’ obituary mentioned the suspect the prosecutor refused to pursue in the Showalter probe.

    Kevin B. Showalter, a 20-year-old Mitchell College student, was killed at 11:12 p.m. on Christmas Eve 1973. He was changing a tire on a well-lit section of Pequot Avenue on the New London shoreline when he was struck and killed. His girlfriend, sitting only 6 feet away on a stone wall, claims she saw nothing.

    Auto body putty from the death car disappeared after a tow truck driver gave it to New London police. The evidence file that was supposed to contain the putty was stuffed with bathroom tiles. The file that was supposed to contain headlight glass from the death car instead contained glass from three different headlights. State police and others suspected that, in order to throw legitimate investigators off the trail, the late young man's clothing was pounded on a different-colored car than the one that killed him.

    The victim's mother, Lucille M. Showalter, tried to get a grand jury investigation of the cover-up. She was rebuffed repeatedly by the presiding judge, Angelo Santaniello who, it later became clear, was best friends with the leading suspect. Santaniello then referred Showalter to prosecutor Satti, who happened to be his former law partner. Satti refused to acknowledge registered letters from Mrs. Showalter pleading for a grand jury probe.

    Satti did finally meet with Mrs. Showalter in 1978, after Judge Joseph Dannehy of Willimantic, acting as a one-man grand jury, named former New London Mayor Harvey N. Mallove as the probable driver of the hit-run vehicle. Satti called the three-hour meeting, in which he repeatedly told Mrs. Showalter that there never should have been a grand jury investigation under Dannehy.

    Mallove held a good hand; he had the best legal muscle in New London County on his side. New London police would not question him for more than seven months, and then only in a perfunctory manner. They would say they inspected his cars, but they did not. Significantly, Mallove’s Lincoln had been repaired, but it wasn’t until state police took over the case four years after the accident that the fender was finally seized.

    Santaniello would arrange for a coroner’s inquest and put his niece in charge of typing the transcript. Only after two years of intense public pressure would the transcript be typed. But the inquest never issued a finding.

    Santaniello tipped off Mallove that he was a suspect. The judge was also aware of what local police knew about the case. Mrs. Showalter memorialized the admissions in tape-recorded telephone conversations.

    “I did talk to Harvey,” Santaniello told Mrs. Showalter on Oct. 17, 1975, “and I said, `You’re suspected.’ As a matter of fact, at that time a police officer came to him on the same day or the next day, and told him you were making accusations about him and that he was a prime suspect.” The day before, Mallove told Mrs. Showalter, “Judge Santaniello is of the opinion that you fingered me.”

    It was not until 1977 that state police, who took over the case at the behest of former Gov. Ella Grasso, formally named Mallove a suspect. Next week, I'll propose a means to solve the Showalter cover-up.

    Showalter Cover-Up Is New London's Shame

    Sept. 11, 2000

    New London, where I grew up and began working in the 1960s and ‘70s, was a dirty little city with character.

    It had a restaurant called the Hygienic that was everything but. There were at least a couple bars where the cops couldn't do anything, except maybe a little business.

    The top pimp in town never went to jail until he was about 60 and a certain court official retired.

    New London will always be the city that tried to cover up the Christmas Eve 1973 hit-and-run death of Kevin B. Showalter. It's been doing a pretty good job for nearly 27 years, but the onion is beginning to peel.

    The local daily newspaper admitted -- in its official history published this year -- that it did a shoddy job on the Showalter case. Specifically, The Day admitted its failure to explore the relationship between a former mayor and a top judge, and their influence on the course of the criminal investigation. That’s a beginning.

    Political and police corruption goes back a couple generations in New London. By the 1970s, New London police were widely known to be involved in the selling of women, dope and refrigerators, among other things. A federal grand jury took note. But as with the Showalter case, there were these little problems with the evidence.

    A jewelry store owner and former city mayor multi-millionaire Harvey Mallove was the prime suspect in the hit-and-run death of Showalter, a student at Mitchell College. Showalter’s date that night, Christmas Eve 1973, said she saw nothing from her vantage point six feet away, sitting on a stone wall under a streetlight on a residential street as a young man changed the tire of her car.

    Harvey was everybody’s pal. He would take kids to the Super Bowl, then, down the road, get them jobs as cops. He was friends with bums in the street and bums in high political office. He was wired. The standing joke among reporters became: Harvey's a great guy to have a beer with, just don't change your tire if he's driving by.

    “I didn't kill the kid in any way, shape or form,” Harvey told me many times. As mayor, Harvey helped hire a few police chiefs. His best friend was the administrative judge for the county; that was the judge who controlled the early stages of the investigation, specifically a coroner’s inquest that never issued a finding.

    State police followed up a report that Mallove’s best friend, County Administrative Judge Angelo G. Santaniello, was with Mallove on Christmas Eve 1973. Santaniello reportedly was No. 11 on a guest list for a party at the home of his political mentor, the late state Sen. Peter Mariani. The Mariani party was one of two Mallove attended that night.

    Santaniello told reporters he never went out on Christmas Eve.

    Another state judge, Joseph F. Dannehy, conducted two grand jury investigations. In 1978, Dannehy named Mallove as the probable driver of the hit-run vehicle, but said evidence that might have ensured conviction was either mishandled or destroyed.

    Mallove died a few years ago with this legacy. Others still have time to come clean and tell the truth about the cover-up. Mrs. Showalter tried unsuccessfully to have Satti, Santaniello and others prosecuted for hindrance of prosecution (CGS Section 53a-166) warning of impending discovery, providing means of avoiding discovery, preventing discovery by deception. Because a conspiracy to hinder prosecution is an ongoing crime, those with information could tell Chief State's Attorney John Bailey, who has begun an initiative to solve some of the state's cold homicide cases.

    Isn’t it time? No one kept the system honest when it counted, though some tried. Most stood by as the system that was supposed to protect the victim and his family betrayed them all.

    Where is the conscience of the community?

    Cold Case On Ice Forever

    Nov. 6, 2000

    One way to deflect attention from a suspect is to get investigators involved in meaningless, time-consuming tasks. Another way is to create a bogus suspect who is then exposed as such, causing a belief that the case is just too hazy to pursue.

    Both of these devices were used repeatedly in the cover-up of the Showalter hit-run case in New London. Whether this was happenstance, indifference, incompetence or malfeasance, the result was the same. The system failed.

    And now, it seems, the truth will remain buried forever.

    Judge Joseph F. Dannehy, the grand juror who investigated the case, wrote in his finding of fact: “After December 25, 1973, the New London Police Department did virtually nothing to solve the hit-run death of Kevin B. Showalter.” The accident occurred the night before.

    Local police and court officials, however, were pro-active in another sense. Their actions served to protect the assailant.

    For example, New London police claimed it would cost as much as $1,200 to trace vehicles using data from the state Motor Vehicle Department. The motor vehicle department declared there was no such charge.

    Nevertheless, New London police spent their time hand-sorting local motor vehicle cards. They looked for a green Chrysler. That was likely a false lead; state police said paint particles found on the victim's clothing did not come from the car that killed him.

    Former Mayor Harvey Mallove began meeting informally with police and court officials as early as Dec. 25, 1973. Mallove wanted to know what the police knew.

    The only lead after two and a half years was quashed by then New London Common Pleas Court Prosecutor Harold Dean in May 1976. The lead was a letter of confession written by a Somers prison inmate to the victim’s mother, Lucille Showalter.

    “I told Harold how important that was to me,” Mallove, the prime suspect, confided to an associate. He also acknowledged discussing the purported confession with his best friend, the presiding judge for the county, Angelo Santaniello.

    The author of the letter was known to be connected with “fences,” or purveyors of stolen goods in the New London area. State police arrested him for harassment of Mrs. Showalter. Two state troopers met with Dean for an hour. They told him the letter contained possibly significant information. State police also believed they could connect the dots in New London between the letter writer and the powers-that-be. Did he owe some favors? Was he paid? Police knew the author had no liability for the accident; he was actually in Florida at the time of the hit-run.

    Dean nolled and dismissed the case without telling the troopers or Mallove. Soon thereafter, state police listed the killing of Showalter as “closed pending further development.” Upon learning of Dean's action, Chief State's Attorney Joseph Gormley remarked he had “no idea” why the lead, “which very well could have led to something,” resulted in a dead end. The case would remain closed for six months, until Gov. Ella Grasso brought the matter to Justice John Cotter.

    Was there criminal activity connected with the Showalter cover-up? It appears we will never know for certain. Dannehy named Mallove as the probable driver, noting that evidence which might have ensured conviction was destroyed. The Chief State’s Attorney’s Office reviewed aspects of the case this fall after a series of columns appeared in The Law Tribune. However, the statute of limitations for the most likely potential charge, conspiracy to hinder prosecution of motor vehicle misconduct, has expired. This shameful case, it appears, is destined to stay on ice forever.

    - AND:

    Olympic Gold for Missing Evidence


    November 28, 2005

    Judge Ellen Gordon was in way over her head with what she tried pass off as a ruling in Day Publishing v. State's Attorney.

    Clueless Gordon was handed a hot one, a case no one has ever wanted in the so-called New London Judicial District. Every single time this case has come to court, begging for justice, The Robes, the prosecutors and their minions have either desecrated their oaths or looked the other way. Clueless Gordon, fairly new to the scene, has managed to join the list of those who are both ostriches and failures.

    The Day newspaper asked Gordon this year to release the grand jury testimony regarding the cover-up of the 1973 hit-run death of Kevin Showalter. Before Gordon probably ever heard of Showalter, five New London County judges recused themselves from a John Doe civil suit against the driver because they were friends with the prime suspect, Harvey Mallove. Mallove -- the late mayor of New London and multimillionaire jeweler who picked police chiefs, planned to run for Congress and starred in the social scene -- was prone to say, "I never killed the kid -- in any way, shape or form."

    It's not like we could expect a New London judge to show guts or brains in this case. Compelling testimony from the first of two grand juries implicated local law enforcement and court officials in a widespread cover-up.

    On Christmas Eve 1973 at 11:12 p.m., as the call came in, a high-ranking New London officer, said, "F--k him, he's dead," and then left to go home. Showalter, a 20-year-old Mitchell College student, lay dead on a well-lit section of Pequot Avenue by the shoreline. His body was thrown 22 feet from the point of impact. His shoes were found 110 feet apart. A leg bone was 75 feet away.

    A tow truck driver gave police auto body putty from the death car. The putty was never seen again. New London police mixed headlight glass from at least three different cars in what they called the evidence file. Replacing the auto body putty was bathroom tile. A local coroner's inquest never issued a finding. State police, who took over the case at the behest of Gov. Ella Grasso, were bewildered and angry when they could not find the transcript of the coroner's inquest. Mallove's best friend -- the presiding judge for the county, Angelo G. Santaniello -- had put his niece in charge of typing that transcript. Santaniello also tipped off Mallove to his status as a suspect.

    Now, Clueless Gordon can't find the 3,000-page transcript of the first grand jury. Does she care? Court clerks allegedly performed a diligent search. Would any reasonable person believe or accept any of this?

    Among the last persons known to possess the grand jury report was the late State's Attorney, C. Robert Satti. Satti, who refused to investigate the case before a special prosecutor was appointed, claimed he returned a copy to the grand juror, then Willimantic Superior Court Judge (later Supreme Court Justice) Joseph Dannehy. Both Dannehy and Satti are dead. Did "Do Nothing Bob" -- Mallove's moniker for Satti -- take it with him? We might as well ask Harvey, also dead, or Kevin.

    Gordon's pathetic decision, dated Nov. 7, went on for about a sentence before its first fatal error. It might sound like a technical error, but it's much, much more than that. She actually said New London police investigated the case.

    Before this, I thought it might take generations to remove the stench from the New London courthouse. Alas, for New London, the stench of this cover-up is forever.







  • more COOL JUSTICE







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  • Via @CtNewsJunkie: City evades responsibility for unjust killing, 4th Amendment violation


  • NEW: RFK Jr. says ‘recent forensic evidence’ points to two shooters in his father’s assassination


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  •           UPDATE, 9-30-16: Damages awarded for unjust killing, 4th Amendment violation        

    BULLETIN:
    Hartford federal jury awards $170K compensatory damages & 32K punitive damages in 4th Amendment / fatal dog shooting case. Costs and attorney fees to be awarded after eight years of litigation expected to total $500,000 - $700,000, possibly more.


    “This verdict is a strong statement from the jury that privacy rights of city residents are just as important as those of suburban homeowners,” said attorney Jon Schoenhorn for the plaintiffs.

    9-17-16 column below




    Judge orders attachment
    of personal assets
    of cops who trespassed




    By Andy Thibault

    This is the haunting voice of trauma inflicted on a 12-year-old girl:

    “That day never goes away. It’s like I can’t really escape it, no matter how hard I try. I should have done something – anything – to stop that bullet from hitting him in the head.”

    And here is some police scanner chatter about the shooting:

    “Have you got anybody hit?

    “Negative, negative, just a dog.

    “We’re all set, shut down the lights. I don’t want a scene here at the, uh, neighborhood.”

    The shooting occurred after school on Dec. 20, 2006 on Enfield Street in Hartford’s North End. The girl, known as K. Harris, suffered Post Traumatic Stress Disorder and became suicidal.

    The U.S. Second Circuit of Appeals ruled two years ago that the cops were trespassing and ordered a trial just to determine damages. The Second Circuit ruling overturned a 2012 verdict by an all-suburban jury in Hartford U.S. District Court supporting the home invasion by police.

    The appeals court also opened the door to both compensatory and punitive damages. Now – as a trial on the amount to award the plaintiff is scheduled to begin Monday – the city is trying to weasel out of its obligation and in the process throwing the cops it promised to indemnify under the bus.

    The Associated Press reported over the weekend that the city of Hartford had reversed its position to indemnify the officers found at fault by the appeals court. Hartford Police Union President Richard Holton told the AP that officers Johnmichael O’Hare and Anthony Pia had been “hung out to dry.”

    Friday afternoon, U.S. Magistrate Judge Donna Martinez ordered the officers’ personal assets attached in the amount of 1.4 million – O’Hare at $750,000 and Pia at $650,000.



    In a documentary which premiered this summer at the Toronto Film Festival, K. Harris recalls letting her dog – a St. Bernard named Seven – outside after school and then hearing a commotion in her front yard.


    “There was a police officer standing over Seven with a gun pointed at Seven. I yelled at him, please, no, don’t shoot my dog!

    “He looked at me dead in my eyes for like a second and then he took a step and then he shot Seven in the head. The police officer was like, ‘I’m sorry, Ma’am, your dog isn’t going to make it.’

    “My life ended right there.”

    Because the officers lacked a warrant or probable cause to invade the Harris property, they violated the family’s Fourth Amendment rights ...

  • Complete column via CtNewsJunkie









  • Documentary Filmmaker Andrea B. Scott’s ‘Just a Dog’










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  •           NEW: RFK Jr. says ‘recent forensic evidence’ points to two shooters in his father’s assassination         


    Robert F. Kennedy flanked by union organizers Dolores Huerta (left) and Paul Schrade (right). Huerta co-founded what would become the United Farm Workers. Schrade, also a union organizer, was one of five others wounded when RFK was assassinated in 1968.
    - Photo courtesy of Mexican American Legal Defense and Educational Fund


    Cool Justice:
    RFK Jr. points to forensic evidence of second gunman in his father’s assassination
    By Andy Thibault


    Buried on page 271 of Robert F. Kennedy Jr.’s new book on the Skakel murder case in Greenwich is a quick, but telling reference to his father’s assassination.

    As part of my summer reading I highlighted the passage. I had a visceral sense it was important.

    Kennedy family members rarely have spoken publicly about the assassinations of either President John Kennedy or U.S. Sen. Robert Kennedy, much less criticized the official findings. The passage is noteworthy for the simple fact it is memorialized in a book. It is not just a comment in an interview.

    This angle deserves serious attention, and so it wasn’t shoehorned into the column published Aug. 5 on the Greenwich murder case, “COOL JUSTICE: RFK Jr. attacks prosecutors, cops, courts for willful misconduct as he asserts cousin Skakel’s innocence.”

  • Aug. 5 column

  • Some of Kennedy’s claims and his book investigating the murder of 15-year-old Martha Moxley in Greenwich in 1975 have been panned by the state Judicial Department and other authors who chronicled the case. A state Supreme Court ruling on whether Skakel will face a retrial or be sent back to prison is expected this fall. A senior judge ruled in 2013 that Skakel did not receive a fair trial when he was convicted of the Moxley murder in 2002. Skakel was freed on bond after serving 11 years of a sentence of 20 years to life in jail.

    That covers a lot of ground, and the next court decision will be big news. It seems to me the “footnote” on page 271 also is big news.

    Following are two paragraphs from Kennedy’s book, “Framed, Why Michael Skakel Spent Over A Decade In Prison For A Murder He Didn’t Commit,” leading up to the clincher paragraph on the RFK assassination:

    “I sympathize deeply with Dorthy Moxley [Martha’s mother]. I have seen up-close the agony of a mother’s grief over the loss of her child. my mother lost her husband to murder and two of her sons to violent, untimely deaths in the bosom of their youth. I was with her when my father died. I stood beside her 29 years later as my little brother Michael died in her arms.

    “My mother told us that we needed to let go of our impulse for revenge and allow the cycle of violence to end with our family. This, she said, was the lesson of the New Testament, which swapped the savage eye-for-an-eye tribalism of the Old Testament for the ethical mandate that we turn the other cheek. But forgiveness wasn’t just ethics. It was salutary. Revenge and resentments, my mother said, are corrosive. Indulging them is like swallowing poison and hoping someone else will die. By opposing the death penalty for Sirhan, we diluted these poisonous passions.

    “And what if, God forbid, the object of our revenge turns out to be innocent? For several decades, my father’s close friend Paul Schrade [in recent photo, right], who took one of Sirhan’s bullets, has argued that Sirhan Sirhan did not fire the shot that killed my father. Recent forensic evidence supports him. How would we have felt now, if our family had demanded his execution?”

    Like most Americans, I had not paid much attention to the forensic details regarding the RFK murder. What kind of evidence was RFK Jr. referring to? What is the significance of his dropping this tidbit toward the end of a book on another subject?

    Robert F. Kennedy was shot just after midnight on June 5, 1968 in the back and in the back of the head at the Ambassador Hotel in Los Angeles. He had been celebrating his California primary win in his campaign for the Democratic nomination for president. Kennedy had become a vigorous opponent of the Vietnam War and an advocate for civil rights, unions and racial justice. His death came just two months after the murder of Rev. Martin Luther King Jr.

    The renowned forensic pathologist and medical school professor, Dr. Cyril Wecht, assisted Los Angeles Chief Medical Examiner Dr. Thomas Noguchi in efforts to secure the Kennedy body and perform the autopsy. I reached out to Wecht this week to talk about the new Kennedy statement and the evidence cited by Paul Schrade and others.

    Regarding Robert Kennedy Jr.’s statement in the new book, Wecht commented: “I think it’s commendable. I wish he had done it sooner.”


    Letter presented this year to California parole officials by Paul Schrade


  • Complete column at Litchfield County Times


  • Also at:
  • New Haven Register







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  • Via @NorwichBulletin #moreCOOLJUSTICE @ #SpraguePublicLibrary 9-22-16 #TrueCrime All Sides of the Law






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  •           Via @NorwichBulletin @HartfordCourant #moreCOOLJUSTICE @ #SpraguePublicLibrary 9-22-16 #TrueCrime All Sides of the Law         

  • Long Version / Update



  • Sprague Public Library to host
    private investigator, author
    Andy Thibault


    By Staff reports

    Andy Thibault, a private investigator and author of the award-winning collection of newspaper columns “More Cool Justice,” will read from his work at 6:30 p.m. Sept. 22 at the Sprague Public Library, 76 Main St., Baltic.



  • Complete article @ Norwich Bulletin





  • The opening chapter of "more COOL JUSTICE," Breaking Bonnie Out, features columns that led to a clemency hearing and freedom for Bonnie Foreshaw, who had been unjustly imprisoned for premeditated murder. The book also contains essays on other controversial cases, some in Connecticut.


  • Hartford Courant The Write Stuff, 2nd to last item


  • Sprague Public Library


  • --





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  • Recent column: Judges who played role in murder probe squelched access to key testimony




  • Greenwich International Film Festival, Summer 2016


  •           The Adventure Begins        
    The Adventure Beings
    A few years ago, I gave up on one futile dream (finding true love, giving my daughter siblings to play with and all those shenanigans) - and replaced it with the more humble and doable one:
    Making a pot of tea together wherever we go.
    In my fantasy, we'll be going to some remote places, with these simple pieces of equipment, an open mind and a willingness to step out of our comfort zone - and brew tea for others and perhaps also be invited to their brew.
    I hope we make many new friends in the process, even for just the duration of the tea party.
    And if not - at least we had a heck of a good cup of tea, outdoors.

    I had the teapot for a long time now. It belongs to a lost love that by now I've given up 99% of hope to ever seeing again. I think after more than a year passed since two lovers have seen of each other is time to move on. At some point, the heart does not grow fonder from absence, but simply gets used to it and tries to forget the pain of being ripped apart by life's cruel injustices. The heart needs to give itself wings to fly and grow - and get itself smashed into the rocks again by another chapter of cruelty.

    But I digress.... I had a kettle that can serve as a teapot -  stainless steel and lightweight as it should be. And also with sentimental value, which is always great for an object you plan to encircle the globe with. But I had no way to heat it up. I'm just take on the characteristics of a clueless chick when it comes to anything hardware or that remotely resembles camping-gear. For that reason alone, perhaps it is good that I met someone new to break my heart. We had a few outdoors tea parties together and I realized those portable little gas burners needn't be heavy nor complicated to operate, so I quickly acquired one for myself while my heart was still bleeding. Because of course I wanted nothing more in the world than to brew a pot of tea outdoors like he did for me. Apparently I'm the kind of masochist that likes to remind herself for as long as possible of the person that she should really forget about immediately.

    Did I digress again? Sorry. It's all part of making the point that my repeatedly broken heart brings me eventually to the conclusion that really all I can do about it is make tea. I am a fully capable adult, I've accomplished plenty of things in my life, mostly all by myself,  including raising a child, which is probably the most challenging thing do to solo - and I'm pretty proud of it. The thing with relationships, is that you can't do them all by yourself. There is always another person involved, and that usually wrecks everything. I mean - the success of such operation is only 50% dependent on what I do or say, and 50% is entirely up to another person. Which so far hasn't really proven to be all that great... Maybe it's even worse than that: it's only third my responsibility, third the other person's, and another big third is left to chance/luck/serendipity/divine providence - call it whatever you like, it's something we have zero control over.

    So here I am, finally hanging the towel and admitting I just can't do this. Especially not the heartbroken phase. It's just too painful, thankyouverymuch. Instead, I'm going to travel the world with my little girl (who is quite grown up now and loves to travel way more than I do), and on the way we're going to stop in places and make tea. Whomever is going to join us or interact with us is welcome to do so. And I hope we'll also be invited to a bunch of tea parties along the way. Our first destination is the area of Mt. Hermon where we set off for a little weekend adventure. And what we brewed and drank there I will tell you in the next few posts...
              Smoky Narcissus         
    Narkiss

    Wild narcissus (N. tazetta) and paperweights (N. 'Chinese Sacred Lily') are growing in my soon-to-be garden and in the mountainous wilderness that is its backyard. The wild one smells a thousand times better, in my humble opinion.... Especially, I've been haunted by its fragrance at night time, mingled with smoke from all the wood stoves used for heating in the village... Smells like a very fancy, smoky-floral beeswax candle burning. Not that this description does it any justice. I wish I could capture it in a perfume. Narkiss has some of the qualities (herbaceous, waxy-animalic) but as always, nature beats us all perfumers to a pulp. Other perfumes along these lines that I recall are Tom Ford's Velvet Gardenia and Shanghai Lily (I must remember to scout a sample size of that soon). Caron's famous Narcisse Noir also belongs to this territory, albeit it's much more aldehyde-heavy and it also has gasoline-like top-notes. Another scent it reminds me is of some of the Feu de Bois candle by Dyptique.

    Those surprising moments when you discover a new yet familiar scent in the natural surroundings, truly are the best.
              EL AUMENTO DE LOS IMPUESTOS ES CONSECUENCIA DEL AUMENTO DEL ESTADO        
    El recaudador de impuestos. Pieter Brueghel
    Para una de las materias de la Universidad en la maestría en economía tuve que hacer un largo escrito presentando una investigación. Mi tesis o trabajo de maestría será sobre impuestos. Aunque inicialmente [en realidad inicialmente pensé en algo muy enredado y como los fractales de longitud infinita] pensé dedicarme a denunciar el aumento de la retención en la fuente a título de renta que se observa en series de tiempo, creo que tengo motivos suficientes para ampliarlo al impuesto de renta.

    ¿Por qué ampliar un poco el tema al impuesto como tal? a La razón es que a veces para los particulares y empresas la retención en la fuente es conveniente. Luego de haber escrito una larga disertación de su inconveniencia, una amiga contadora me dijo que había casos en los que era conveniente. Coincidencialmente, luego del comentario de mi amiga contadora como agente retenedor me pidieron dos personas en menos de una semana que no se acogían a beneficios legales que me permitían no retenerles sino que por el contrario me pedían que les retuviera. Esto tiene también su fundamento en el flujo de caja, el impuesto de renta afecta fuertemente el flujo de caja, la retención en la fuente puede diferir esa afectación al flujo de caja que es el impuesto de renta.

    En todo caso, sin perjuicio de los alcances que la investigación vaya a tener o a cambiar quisiera compartir unas pequeñas notas sobre por qué los impuestos tienden a subir –o a bajar-. ¿Qué hace que paguemos más impuestos en términos reales? ¿Por qué el estado promueve reformas tributarias? Básicamente porque necesita dinero. A continuación se mostrarán dos perspectivas, la histórica y la teoría económica sobre por qué aumentan los impuestos. Ambas coinciden a pesar de su diferencia en perspectiva.

    Aunque  se desconoce si existe algún marco teórico que presente hechos estilizados [hechos que se repiten al aumentar los impuestos] o hipótesis de las causas que influyen en el recaudo, hay un hecho central los impuestos surgen de la necesidad que tienen los estados de financiar el “gasto público”.  Esto puede observarse tanto desde la perspectiva histórica como desde la teoría económica.

    1. PERSPECTIVA HISTÓRICA Y FILOSÓFICA
    A mi modo de ver hay hechos estilizados están en un análisis histórico. Mil años antes de Cristo en el libro primero de Samuel se hace una advertencia vital: ¡Los reyes cuestan! (1 Samuel vs 11-18). Se tienen registros de impuestos alrededor de 3000 años antes de Cristo en la China (NEW INTERNACIONALISM, 2008). En la antigua Grecia los impuestos se usaban para la guerra pero cuando esta terminaba se devolvían (NEW INTERNACIONALISM, 2008). Quien fuese el tutor de uno de los más grandes tiranos de la historia, Aristóteles, tenía claro que los impuestos no pertenecían al que los recaudaba sino al “tesoro público” (ARISTÓTELES, pág. Volumen 8) y que eran objeto de reembolso (NEW INTERNACIONALISM, 2008).

    En la Antigüedad parece entonces que los impuestos respondían a guerras y eran en general en cantidades pequeñas. El impuesto sobre las ventas del emperador Julio César era del 1% (NEW INTERNACIONALISM, 2008). Los impuestos para financiar las guerras como el crecimiento imperial eran la mayor motivación para cobrarlos como sus aumentos. Por ejemplo, Pedro el Grande en Rusia gravó todo lo que pudo (NEW INTERNACIONALISM, 2008) para sus ambiciones imperiales.  Por ejemplo en Inglaterra en 1914 el impuesto sobre el ingreso era del 6% y pasó al 30% al finalizar la primera Guerra Mundial en 1918  (NEW INTERNACIONALISM, 2008).

    En la antigüedad eran muy pequeñas las cantidades que prácticamente no tenían efecto sobre la mayoría de los ciudadanos. Sin embargo, con el paso del tiempo las ideas de limitar los impuestos o inclusive negar su legitimidad han ido aumentando. Claro de la mano del crecimiento del estado. Tan es así que sorprende lo poco que importaban a los grandes filósofos estos temas con únicamente pequeñas alusiones al tema, siendo la Aristotélica mucho más racional y la platónica suelta una denuncia en uno de los apartados de la República. No es sino hasta la escolástica española que se hace un análisis jurídico-económico a los impuestos. La historia también ha mostrado ejemplos de límites y desobediencia a los impuestos. Francisco Suárez nos cuenta Carlos Parma sintetizó basado en las enseñanzas de Santo Tomás los límites de los impuestos. Según él estos debían ser para que fuesen justos (LAMAS):

    -          debe ser impuesta por la máxima autoridad legislativa;
    -          su finalidad debe ser conocida y justa
    -          y la proporción del tributo establecido por ella debe ser acorde con su finalidad, en el momento de su creación y durante la subsistencia del impuesto.

    Derivado de estos principios es que Juan de Mariana denuncia la mutación de la moneda –el aumento del flujo circulante de dinero- como un impuesto encubierto. Este método en la actualidad consiste en que el Banco Central [en Colombia Banco de la República] prenda la máquina de billetes a favor de los acreedores del estado. Esa mutación de la moneda es un robo, o viéndolo más “objetivamente” es un impuesto encubierto.

    Por otro lado, las cuestiones tributarias han sido motivo de movimientos políticos como la independencia de los Estados Unidos (NEW INTERNACIONALISM, 2008).  También se cuenta que el pensador Norteamericano Henry David Thoureau autor de On the duty of civil disobedience fue encarcelado por no pagar un impuesto que financiaba una guerra que los Estados Unidos libraba con México (COY-FERRER, 1975, pág. 414). La oposición a los impuestos se encuentra de manera directa en las acciones de Thoureau, el filósofo Lysander Spooner (SPOONER, 1882)  al igual que el alemán Friedich Nietzsche (NIETZSCHE, pág. 68), consideran que no existe tal tesoro público sino que lo que “pertenece” al estado es robado.

    No presento las teorías que favorecen los impuestos por dos razones. La primera es que parecen estar implícitas en la mente de todos, como un lavado de cerebro muy bien hecho, así todos se quejen de ellos. Esta primera razón le explicará de entrada por qué le choca la cita Nietzscheana. La segunda razón es que más adelante sí hablaré de ellas.

    2. PERSPECTIVA ECONÓMICA
    Desde la perspectiva de la teoría económica hay una coincidencia total con la perspectiva histórica. La ventaja de la insípida perspectiva económica es que nos permite decir la verdad, sin necesidad de que usen nuestras ideas para distorsionar la veracidad de nuestras afirmaciones. El aumento del gasto público como impuesto presente o futuro es lo que se conoce como la equivalencia ricardiana. ¿Qué nos explica la equivalencia ricardiana?

    “Esta dice que cualquier cambio en el timing de los impuestos —es decir, por ejemplo, bajar transitoriamente impuestos hoy, financiar con deuda y repagar- la en el futuro— no tiene efectos sobre la economía, en particular sobre las decisiones del público. De ahí que se pueda argumentar que, a partir de esta idea, la deuda pública no es riqueza agregada, ya que al final hay que pagarla, y lo que la restricción del gobierno nos dice es que este pago se hará con impuestos.” (DE GREGORIO, 2007, pág. 148)

     Uno de los conceptos claves frente al recaudo es el déficit fiscal. El déficit fiscal puede expresarse matemáticamente la siguiente manera:


    Si es negativo se considera superávit fiscal e implica que los gobiernos o estados están gastando menos de lo que les ingresa lo cual es positivo en términos de finanzas públicas. Hay diversas distinciones sobre los distintos niveles de déficit pero la noción es clara. Ahora bien, ¿Qué pasa si el estado para crecer gasta más de lo que recauda? ¡Tiene necesariamente que endeudarse! Ya vimos que lo que enseña la equivalencia ricardiana tarde que temprano tiene que pagarse con más impuestos. Esto nos permite inferir la restricción presupuestaria del gobierno [o sea que el gobierno no tiene dinero absoluto en el tiempo] a lo largo del tiempo así:


    Esto quiere decir que el valor actual de todos los gastos más el valor actual de la deuda deben ser financiadas completamente por el flujo proyectado de impuestos. El último término significa que la deuda al final de los periodos tiene que tender a cero o decrecer lo que nos permite reexpresar así:



    Esto quiere decir que el valor actual de todo el flujo de impuestos, menos el flujo de gastos debe ser igual al valor actual de la deuda. Esta restricción presupuestaria intertemporal es la que impide que haya un déficit elevado y que la deuda no crezca a una tasa mayor que los intereses. Por tal motivo, habrá un momento que para suplir la restricción presupuestaria del gobierno habrá que aumentar los impuestos o estaríamos violando la condición de solvencia.

    Mejor dicho, a los estados también los pueden enviar a “cobro jurídico” por no pagar, por eso a la larga tendrán que pagar sus deudas. Pero ¿cómo pagan las deudas que son el precio del “bien común”? O vendiendo bienes propios o aumentando los impuestos porque es la única fuente de ingresos.

    3. IMPUESTOS EN EL ESTADO COLOMBIANO.
    Hemos visto que históricamente los afanes expansionistas estatales generan como consecuencia directa o indirecta el aumento de los impuestos. Y Colombia está en un afán estatal expansionista. Desde esta perspectiva, el flujo de gastos del estado colombiano se espera que crezca en los próximos años las razones son entre otras las siguientes:

    -          Las indemnizaciones a las víctimas del conflicto, el Consejo de Estado maneja la tesis de la reparación integral bastante costosa.

    -          El estado social de derecho que significa estado de bienestar en términos económicos y consiste en que el estadovela por el denominado “mínimo vital” de los individuos.

    -          Esto implica que los gastos en salud, educación, recreación, entre muchos otros sean prestados por el estado.

    ¿Quién paga esos costos? Derivado de la tesis del “mínimo vital” pronto caeremos en un pasivo pensional elevado, subsidios al agro, al desempleo –y al empleo-, subsidios a los ricos y a los pobres [que paga la clase media] que el estado tendrá que pagar con dinero recaudado de más impuestos.

    Previamente no citamos las corrientes que fundamentan los impuestos. Este es el momento. Si usted cree en el estado social de derecho tendrá que afirmar que el pago de los impuestos es vital para el sostenimiento de labores estatales como el “gasto público social”. Que es vital una estructura impositiva para redistribuir los ingresos de las clases más favorecidas a las menos favorecidas y que eso es labor del estado. En la teoría eso suena hermoso pero en la práctica es más impuestos para todos.

    Como el estado depende de una gran burocracia y ya no solamente se paga la corte del rey [por aquello de los “frenos y contrapesos”] sino la de Presidencia, Fiscalía, Procuraduría, Defensoría del Pueblo, Banco de la República, Gobernaciones, Alcaldías, Superintendencias, Establecimientos Públicos, Comisiones de Regulación, la DIAN, altas Cortes, Congreso –con altos salarios- con su aparato administrativo y todos aquellos extraterrestres administrativos como le decía una profesora (que creía en el estado) que podrían crecer ad infinitum. ¿Cómo así que pueden crecer ad infinitum? Pues infinitas son las formas de corrupción luego para preverlas se necesitan infinitos entes que también pueden ser corruptas: ¡una bonita serie de crecimiento geométrico! Es claro, con la burocracia que el estadoes un ente redistributivo, toma el dinero de las clases medias para dárselo a las altas o sea congresistas, funcionarios públicos, entre otras. Efectivamente ¿quién paga los impuestos? A más impuestos ¿quién pagará más si nadie quiere pagarlos?

    4.  REFLEXIÓN FINAL
    Uno de los objetivos del trabajo de grado no le gustaba al asesor, pero fue propuesto por el asesor [estos académicos no se ponen de acuerdo]. El objetivo es el siguiente:

    “Denunciar el peligro político y jurídico de que la retención en la fuente crezca a un ritmo porcentual superior al del ingreso de familias y empresas.”

    En este objetivo soy claro, mis afanes académicos tienen que tener una finalidad que sirva a la gente, sino escribiré buena carreta. De alguna manera hay algo entre este objetivo y esto que son notas previas a la investigación que en términos académicos llaman “marco teórico”. Sin embargo, el objetivo no se sobrepone a la conclusión que es levemente distinta: para reducir impuestos se requiere reducir el estado. Y ¿por qué es bueno reducir el estado? Pregúntese ¿De qué le sirve el estado? Y ¿Cuánto le cuesta el estado? Y con un análisis práctico quizás sepa la respuesta.

    Referencias.

    ARISTÓTELES. (s.f.). LA POLÍTICA (Vol. 8). La Editorial Virtual. Recuperado el 28 de 11 de 2013, de http://www.laeditorialvirtual.com.ar/pages/Aristoteles_LaPolitica/Aristoteles_LaPolitica_000.htm

    COY-FERRER, J. (1975). THOUREAU, HENRY DAVID. En E. RIALP, GRAN ENCICLOPEDIA RIALP (Vol. 22, págs. 413-414). Madrid: Ediciones RIALP S.A.

    DE GREGORIO, J. (2007). MACROECONOMÍA. TEORÍA Y POLÍTICAS. Santiago de Chile: Pearson. Recuperado el 28 de 11 de 2013, de http://www.degregorio.cl/pdf/Macroeconomia.pdf

    LAMAS, F. A. (s.f.). CARLOS PARMA. Recuperado el 28 de 11 de 2013, de Francisco Suarez y el impuesto injusto: http://www.carlosparma.com.ar/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=172:francisco-suarez-y-el-impuesto-injusto-&catid=47:filosofia-del-derecho&Itemid=27

    NEW INTERNACIONALISM. (01 de 10 de 2008). NEW INTERNACIONALISM. Recuperado el 27 de 11 de 2013, de A short history of TAXATION: http://newint.org/features/2008/10/01/tax-history/

    NIETZSCHE, F. W. (s.f.). ASÍ HABLÓ ZARATHUSTRA. España: Euroliber S.A.

    SPOONER, L. (1882). NATURAL LAW OR THE SCIENCE OF JUSTICE. Boston. Recuperado el 28 de 11 de 2013, de http://lysanderspooner.org/node/59


     OTROS ENLACES QUE TOCAN EL TEMA DE LOS IMPUESTOS



              7 Regionally Flavoured Songs From Bollywood That Have Done Justice To Their Origin        

    These are the best songs from Mainstream Bollywood with some regional flavours. India, the land of more than 1 Billion people, who speak more than a hundred languages. This specific information means that there are more than hundred ways in which you say a thing. Along with this, every single nook and corner of this

    The post 7 Regionally Flavoured Songs From Bollywood That Have Done Justice To Their Origin appeared first on RapidLeaks.


              A Mother Is Warning Parents About The "Hot Water Challenge" After Her Daughter Was Severely Burned - BuzzFeed News        

    BuzzFeed News

    A Mother Is Warning Parents About The "Hot Water Challenge" After Her Daughter Was Severely Burned
    BuzzFeed News
    The girl is in the hospital with burns on her face, back, and shoulders after she was doused with boiling water at a sleepover. Posted on August 10, 2017, at 10:52 a.m.. Michelle Broder Van Dyke. BuzzFeed News Reporter. Share On facebook Share.
    Bronx girl who poured boiling water on sleeping 11-year-old friend's face tried to kill herself after 'prank'New York Daily News
    Police: 12-year-old poured boiling water on NYC girl's faceLos Angeles Times
    Mom of boiling water victim: "I want justice for my daughter"WABC-TV
    CBS News -Sacramento Bee -NBC New York -Atlanta Journal Constitution
    all 81 news articles »

              Ragosta, The Honorable Vincent A.        
    RAGOSTA, THE HONORABLE VINCENT A. Associate Justice of the Rhode Island Superior Court, 93, of Providence, passed away peacefully surrounded by his...
              Should Canadian Judges Wearing “Trump” Attire be Disciplined?        
    Is discipline in order for an Ontario judge who went shopping wearing a “Make American Great Again” t-shirt? What about a judge sitting in court the day after the American election wearing a baseball cap with the same logo? Local resident Lorne Warwick was also shopping when he saw Justice Toni Skarica, of Ontario’s Superior … Continue reading Should Canadian Judges Wearing “Trump” Attire be Disciplined?
              Zealous Advocacy or Abuse of Process?        
    This week two Vancouver lawyers were excoriated by a Supreme Court Justice because of the tactics they employed in a case involving the proposed adoption of a young Metis child, referred to as SS. (A.S. v. British Columbia (Director Of Child, Family and Community Services),2017 BCSC 1175) Lawyer JH represented foster parents who were desperate … Continue reading Zealous Advocacy or Abuse of Process?
              A S’Minchin of Miraculous Matilda        
    Matilda is one of the quintessential geek kid’s books; the story of a nerd girl who uses her brain to bring a pinch of justice to the world is bound to resonate with swots of all ages. A couple of years ago I managed to get myself to Stratford ‘pon Avon to see the RSC’s […]
              Families of jailed Turkish journalists shaken but determined        

    Istanbul: Their imprisonment has torn families apart while the newspaper they work for is left without some of its brightest stars.

    But the relatives and colleagues of jailed journalists from the Turkish opposition daily Cumhuriyet vow to continue to fight for their freedom and ideals.

    "For nine months we have been living a nightmare, to be honest," said Nazire Gursel, wife of veteran commentator Kadri Gursel who has been in jail since October.

    The hardest part, she said, was replying to questions from their 10-year-old son, Erdem.

    "People tell my child, `Your father is a hero, he has done a lot for Turkey`," Nazire Gursel recounted.

    "So, on the one hand he is proud, but on the other hand, he asks, `But why is my father in prison if he is a hero? Who is his enemy?`"

    Since Monday, 17 journalists, executives and other staff of Cumhuriyet, a daily fiercely critical of President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, have been on trial accused of supporting "terrorist" organisations.

    Secular Cumhuriyet ("Republic") daily, one of Turkey`s oldest newspapers, has built a strong reputation for publishing scoops embarrassing for those in power.

    The newspaper rejects the "absurd" accusations and claims the trial is aimed at damaging one of the country`s last independent media outlets.

    The experience has united journalists` relatives and their free colleagues who come to court together, and who sometimes go in groups to Silivri prison on the outskirts of Istanbul with a minibus chartered by the newspaper.

    Nazire Gursel goes to Silivri every Friday. "I had never been to Silivri before my husband`s incarceration. When I arrived there for the first time, I told myself `it looks like a Nazi camp`, she told AFP.

    "It is a really scary place."The trial gave family members the chance to see their loved ones outside of prison, where visits are confined to an hour and take place behind bulletproof glass.

    "We at least have the chance to see or hear them without a window between us, to hear their voice directly without using a telephone," said Yonca Sik, the wife of Ahmet Sik, one of Turkey`s most famous investigative journalists who is also jailed.

    According to her, conditions in prison have hardened since her husband`s last incarceration- in 2011, he was imprisoned after writing notably one of the few full-scale investigations into the group of Fethullah Gulen.

    Gulen is a US-based cleric who Ankara accuses of ordering last year`s failed coup against President Recep Tayyip Erdogan.

    "They are in isolation, that is especially the hardest," she told AFP in front of the Istanbul courthouse where the staff is on trial. Among them, 11 are in pre-trial detention.

    "They take them away from the people they love, their work and it`s clearly an injustice, persecution," one of Cumhuriyet`s lawyers Efkan Bolac said.

    "It`s torture for the accused."Beyond the impact on families, the incarcerations have hurt Cumhuriyet: the paper`s chairman, Akin Atalay, and its editor-in-chief Murat Sabuncu are currently in prison.

    "For nine months, Cumhuriyet has faced troubles. Nearly all of its senior executives have been imprisoned as well as many writers," the daily`s Ankara bureau chief Erdem Gul said.

    Gul himself was sentenced last year for five years for "revealing state secrets" after a front page story claiming to show the government sending arms to rebels in Syria in May 2015. He is appealing the sentence.

    "We are paying a heavy price but we continue to publish the newspaper," Gul said, adding: "Cumhuriyet has not changed its editorial line."

    Nazire Gursel says she does not regret the work that her husband did which caused him to be behind bars. "I`m immensely proud of him."

    The judge is likely to decide on Friday whether or not to release the accused for the rest of the trial.

    "Turkey is no longer a state of law, but there are still people who are fighting for democracy, for justice," said Yonca Sik, pointing to the demonstrators gathered in front of the court. 

    "And that, of course, gives me hope."

    Section: 
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              Lego 76087 Heroes Justice L3         

    Normale prijs: € 149,95

    Aanbiedingsprijs: € 129,95


              Inglewood Community Garden Thrives with Art, Culture & Music!        
    Inglewood, California  Written by Ginger Van Hook May 20, 2010
            Inglewood Community Garden is a dream students at Morningside High School have realized today with the help of Inglewood City Council member, Ralph L. Franklin of District 4, Teachers and Mentors, Miss Roshondra Woods, World History Teacher, Mr. Shawn Stanton at Morningside High School with Mr. D'Artagnan Scorza, Director at The Social Justice Learning Institute, and Mr. Sirls, the Principal of Morningside High School. Photography Ginger Van Hook, 2010
    For some of the students, it was hard to believe that these beautiful green corn leaves had come from all this dirt and gravel, but the miracle on Yukon and 107th Street in Inglewood was in full bloom. A student by the name of Jazz told the audience that she has been disheartened at first to see that this was a big empty lot with what seemed endless rocks. Then the students started clearing the land and putting their hearts and souls into the earth and the soil responded to their efforts to grow everything from tomatoes to chilies, jalapenos, lettuce, squash as well as herbs like parsley and oregano too.




    'Jazz' told us about the transformation of the garden and the friendships that she had made. She explained how there was a new community where before there had been an empty space. The audience cheered for the success of the students and there was a heightened sense of community achievement in the air. There was a slight breeze coming from the ocean that brushed the leaves of the  tomatoes and the peppers ever so slightly. The sun beat down upon the earth and music filled the air. Musicians played the guitar and percussion rhythms with their hands and their bodies moved to the beat. Guests were invited to take a water bottle from the center of the garden and in ceremonious ritual to bless the land with the names of their ancestors. I watered a patch of tomatoes and recalled my grandparents in the past. It was hard to remain objective. I was involved. I was now a part of this new blessing upon the community.  I was no longer a reporter, witnessing for the writing of a story, I was pulled into the land, the dirt, the rocky earth and right into the story, taken in by the aroma of fresh tomato leaves and the scent of strawberry flowers and consequently, the encouragement of artistic, poetic, talented new friends.


    D'Artagnan ScorzaDirector for The Social Justice Learning Institute 
    said his students are working on a Food Initiative




     Mr. Sirls, the Principal of Morningside High School, gave the students and supporters encouragement then went over to the wall and autographed his hand print in green.
    Mr. Sirl leaves his mark on the community garden wall.










    Janet Simmons read her poem that she wrote for the Inglewood Community Garden:

    I dedicate...
    I dedicate...
    my words,
    my voice,
    my sound,
    and my choice...
    of speech
    I speak of here.
    I dedicate...
    I dedicate...
    what I have seeked here
    throughout, without and within this garden
    I dedicate...
    I dedicate...
    my rough hands
    and my
    rock indented knees
    my wind tormented hair 
    and 
    the dirt infected breeze
    that flows through this garden
    like a stream of music through my ears
    When it comes down to it
    this would not mean as much
    without you, me, us
    so
    I dedicate myself to you.


    There were cooking demonstrations and watermelon slices.


    The Los Angeles Times came to cover the event and I captured Glenn Koenig working in earnest covering the tree planting ceremony. This Photo is by Ginger Van Hook, but at least four or five reporters were on scene to witness this miracle transforming strangers into friends, and smiles turning lives into a tight knit community bonding over vegetables and issues of social justice, friendship and healthy meals...All good things going on in the City of Inglewood!

    Julie Prejean a Forestry Senior Manager for TREE PEOPLE 
    came to support the garden opening and to donate and help plant  a special tree. 
    She told her eager audience of new gardeners that they could choose its name.

    City Council Member Ralph L. Franklin praised the students, 
    teachers and supporters for taking the initiative and making it all happen, 
    and 'what a beautiful day it is for a planting ceremony!'



    USC reporter Christine Trang from the USC Annenberg School for Communications and Journalism
    interviewed various participants and was preparing her report for southlareport.com

    Inglewood Artists and supporters, Ken Ober, Renee Fox and Ceres Madoo, Alumni Relations at Otis College of Art and Design came to support the Morningside High School Community Garden Opening Ceremonies. 
    Photo by Ginger Van Hook 2010.

    As an Inglewood Artist I was invited to attend this event, thanks to Ceres Madoo and when I arrived,  I did not know what to expect; but whatever it was to be, I knew this was a GREAT IDEA! As I milled about I got the opportunity to meet Mr. D'Artagnan Scorza who told me how the students from Morningside High School had gotten together to discuss civic engagement, how to show school spirit,  how to improve the community and how to better serve the needs of the school district.  The students themselves came up with the concept of a community garden, but at first, did not  have the means to make it happen. The original students were from Miss Roshondra's class and Mr. Shawn Stanton's class. A good idea took root then and there. One thing led to another and with the help of Inglewood City Council Member Ralph Franklin, their project got the encouragement and the support they needed right there from the school district's land.  
    This property belongs to the school so now the students are able to 
    develop a way to empower themselves to be a self sustaining community 
    with healthy nourishing meals for its students. 
    No better way to grow fine artists, fine students and fine citizens
    than to take the seeds and cultivate, 
    water frequently, daily, encourage with wisdom and respect for the land.
    The students have a great number of plans which includes a farmer's market, music, art and culinary culture events.























              American Society of Addiction Medicine (ASAM) National Practice Guideline for the Use of Medications in the Treatment of Addiction Involving Opioid Use        
    The Centers for Disease Control have recently described opioid use and resultant deaths as an epidemic. At this point in time, treating this disease well with medication requires skill and time that are not generally available to primary care doctors in most practice models. Suboptimal treatment has likely contributed to expansion of the epidemic and concerns for unethical practices. At the same time, access to competent treatment is profoundly restricted because few physicians are willing and able to provide it. This “Practice Guideline” was developed to assist in the evaluation and treatment of opioid use disorder, and in the hope that, using this tool, more physicians will be able to provide effective treatment. Although there are existing guidelines for the treatment of opioid use disorder, none have included all of the medications used at present for its treatment. Moreover, few of the existing guidelines address the needs of special populations such as pregnant women, individuals with co-occurring psychiatric disorders, individuals with pain, adolescents, or individuals involved in the criminal justice system. This Practice Guideline was developed using the RAND Corporation (RAND)/University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA) Appropriateness Method (RAM) – a process that combines scientific evidence and clinical knowledge to determine the appropriateness of a set of clinical procedures. The RAM is a deliberate approach encompassing review of existing guidelines, literature reviews, appropriateness ratings, necessity reviews, and document development. For this project, American Society of Addiction Medicine selected an independent committee to oversee guideline development and to assist in writing. American Society of Addiction Medicine's Quality Improvement Council oversaw the selection process for the independent development committee. Recommendations included in the guideline encompass a broad range of topics, starting with the initial evaluation of the patient, the selection of medications, the use of all the approved medications for opioid use disorder, combining psychosocial treatment with medications, the treatment of special populations, and the use of naloxone for the treatment of opioid overdose. Topics needing further research were noted.
              How to Deliver a More Persuasive Message Regarding Addiction as a Medical Disorder        
    Many members of our field are frustrated that the public does not see addiction as a legitimate medical disorder which should be compassionately addressed as a health problem rather than a criminal justice problem. Although some attribute the disconnect to the public's lack of scientific knowledge or attachment to outdated moral views regarding substance use, this commentary suggests that the problem may well be our own messaging. We would be more persuasive if we acknowledged that addiction is different from most medical disorders because of its high negative externalities, and that this understandably makes the public more scared of and angry about addiction than they are about conditions like asthma, type II diabetes, and hypertension. Relatedly, because of the amount of violence and other crimes associated with addiction, we should acknowledge that the public's belief that law enforcement has an important role to play in responding to addiction has a rational basis.
              Training and Outreach Coordinator – Austin, TX        

    Texas Advocacy Project Texas Advocacy Project (the “Project”) is a statewide nonprofit, legal organization based in Austin. Our mission is to prevent domestic and dating violence, sexual assault, and stalking throughout Texas through free legal services, access to the justice system, and education. Our attorneys, staff, volunteers, and Board of Directors are committed to advancing …

    The post Training and Outreach Coordinator – Austin, TX appeared first on Texas Council on Family Violence.


              What I've learned in Africa        
    I failed miserably in the two learning targets I set myself when I arrived here - mastery of the French language (I get by but am by no means fluent) and competence at drumming (I've managed to fit in two lessons in over six years).  But I have learned a number of things, some about myself and some about Africa.

    I learned that I'm not as emotionally self-sufficient as I'd always thought - that I need people.  My first couple of years were really quite lonely, until I worked out that the best response was not to try to toughen myself up so I could cope better but to go out and find friends.

    I learned that I'm not a very compassionate person.  I care about injustice towards groups of people and want to do my bit to put that right, but I don't cry over the suffering of individuals nor do I give and share what I have in the way that Africans (and some Europeans/Americans) do.  I don't feel sympathy when I see someone begging, I just feel a need to try to change the system.  It's not a trait to be particularly proud of, but then again it is one that makes it easier to cope with a job like mine where you do witness a lot of suffering.

    & I learned (or rather confirmed my suspicion) that I am physically suited to the environment here.  I love the heat - don't miss winters, or indeed seasons, at all - and my only illness during my time here was the bronchitis I picked up on a winter trip to the US and a touch of flu in my first month here.  Not only have I avoided malaria but I haven't even suffered one bout of diarrhoea in more than six years here!

    As regards Africa and its people?  Well, I've learnt that it is a highly materialistic society and with conspicuous consumption preferred over savings or investment, that Africans of different shades of brown and black can be far more racist (towards eachother) than any whites I've ever met, that things will happen when they happen no matter how many times an impatient white person looks at their watch in irritation, and that when things appear to have gone wrong, there is always a solution, especially when Africans spot a white person in need.

    I've learnt a lot about the huge importance of the obligations that come with the extended family system, and the way in which this system is a strong barrier against Africa developing on the same path that the West has.  On the one hand it works against people building up the kind of wealth necessary to build businesses, as the more one earns the greater the number of family members who come calling for help; I don't think I have any African colleagues who don't spend a significant proportion of their income supporting their extended family.  On the other hand this means that what we in the West would call corruption and nepotism (those with power using it to favour/benefit family and friends) are in Africa normal and acceptable forms of behaviour.  I'll never forget the dinner in Mali where I heard a government minister tell some friends that he was going to resign as he couldn't cope with the constant demands for money and jobs from his family and community.  Taken up to the next level - the tribe - this also explains in large part why Western-style democracy does not really work in Africa.

    I learnt that every sub-Saharan African, whether Christian, Muslim, atheist or animist, believes in a spirit world. This world operates in parallel with the material world but with the ability to interfere in the latter for good or evil.  Typical manifestations of this belief include the protective amulets worn by many people and widespread accusations of witchcraft to explain what we would call bad luck.

    Finally, I learned about a very important existential difference between the West and Africa - or, more accurately I suspect, between the West and rest of the world - in the way we look at a human being.  In the West we focus almost entirely on that person as an individual, with rights and choices that attach to him/her as an individual.  Here in Africa, that is not important.  A human being is not seen as an individual but in terms of their relationship to others.  So one is a mother, a sister, a chief, a Christian, a member of a certain tribe...

    I recently spent a few days in an African household, where I was soon referred to as "aunty", the usual term for a respected (older) family friend; there was no way I would have been called by my name.  Birthdays are not celebrated here either.

    Of course those relationships carry obligations and expectations (built up in the culture over many generations) which are considered far more important than anything the individual concerned might prefer were they to be given free choice.  It shows what a clash of cultures it is to try to impose individual human rights (eg the right of a child to go to school rather than to help with the family business, or the right of a man to live and sleep with another man rather than to marry a woman and to produce children) on societies where the happiness of the individual is considered far less important than the well-being of the community.  Particularly in a part of the world where it is believed that failing to maintain the traditons of the ancestors is likely to bring misfortune.

    It's ironic really that one of the things many expats relish, myself included, is the freedom from expectations and obligations that we have through living outside of our own cultures.


    Unless anything momentous happens in the next 48 hours that has to be reported here, this is my last post on louiseinsenegal.  Hopefully it won't be long until my first post on louiseinpanama.
              Interest grows in new model for school discipline and youth justice        
    none
              Tic-Talk Tonight: Lonnie Grant         
    Welcome to the newest edition of Tic-Talk, the transcript that follows is the full interview as conducted by Indira Nooyi with our guest interviewee, Lonnie Grant, captain of the Voyager. Interview was carried out on the planet Cascom in the Castra system on 2947-03-12. Indira Nooyi(IN): Good evening and welcome to another edition of Tic-Talk, I’m your host for the evening Indira Nooyi and with me tonight is the captain and pilot of a Freelancer DUR named Voyager. Thank you for joining me tonight, Mr. Grant. Lonnie Grant (LG): Thank you for having me on Indira. I love your show. IN: Thank you. Now Mr. Grant, you just recently discovered a new jump point, would you please tell our viewing audience a little bit about how you came to discover it. LG: Well you see Indira… it wasn’t really the most clever way to discover a jump point. It occurred to me that for the size of the system, Castra has an inordinate number of jump points… I think there were 5. It occurred to me that this concentration might be significant so I started scouring the outer rim of the system with my scanners. After a few days I got a hit on my jump scanners. IN: And upon closer investigation you found this new jump point, correct? LG: Yeah… it took me awhile to triangulate it but eventually I got close enough and she just opened up in front of me. They’re a beautiful sight, jump points. They’re all different… have their own character. IN: Did you immediately travel through it following discovery? LG: It’s always a nervous thing, you know? Plenty of explorers have vanished forever after attempting a new jump point. I guess that’s a long way of saying that I took some time... Wrote out messages for my family and friends and left them in a buoy before I ventured inside. IN: And what did you find on the other side? LG: Well first of all, this particular jump was pleasantly simple to navigate. Some of them can be really nasty. Either way, on the far side I discovered a red dwarf star with 4 major worlds orbiting, along with many other smaller worlds of course. IN: A brand new system then? LG: Yes! This is a fresh jump. IN: So, with that being said this opens up several possibilities to you. What do you see yourself doing with the jump point coordinates? Are you considering selling them to the military or off to a scientific research facility maybe? LG: My plan is to sell the coordinates to the UEE’s exploration and colonization division, and then return to the system to continue my work exploring the worlds it holds.  There’s a lot to learn! IN: That would make you a very rich man, Mr. Grant. Why continue to work and explore when you could retire and live the rest of your life in ease and comfort? LG: Honestly for most explorers… there’s a drive to keep pushing the edge of our knowledge and it doesn’t go away with a full bank account. I will always be most at home on the fringes, searching for the next horizon. Might have to update some of my equipment though! IN: Indeed and you will have the funds to do it. With this being a new system, I know that there is always a push to find new habitable worlds for humanity to colonize. Does this new system have anything that sets it apart from the rest? LG: So this is kind of interesting… This is a tiny star so the worlds orbit close. One appears too close, probably too hot. The furthest planet seems outside the habitable zone… although perhaps some extremophiles could live there. Once again though this is the long way of saying that the middle two planets appear habitable.  One is about the size of Earth and has large oceans covering about 80% of its surface.  The other one is smaller, about the size of Mars, and has limited water - maybe 20% ocean - but appears to support abundant life regardless. I haven’t taken any detailed scans yet… the new equipment would be right up that alley - help me get better quality scans. IN: So, at least two habitable worlds, your find might be more valuable then you consider it to be. If people were to move there today, what would they be calling this system? Do you plan to name it or leave that up to the scientists? LG: Well Indira, you have to understand that it is rare in an explorer’s career that they find anything of really major value. Comets, lucrative asteroids, small black holes… these are common place and enough to keep you going but new star systems are really the dream. I have thought of a name and I will be submitting it, with your approval. I do love your show, so I was going to name the system Indira. IN: Wow, I don’t know what to say, Mr. Grant. I’m very flattered. I only hope that whatever name you choose does the system justice. Sounds like you’ve found yourself a small little paradise. I sincerely wish you luck on your next adventure and again thank you for joining me tonight and sharing your story. Maybe it will inspire the next generation of explorers to go out there and find their own jump point. I’m Indira Nooyi and this has been another edition of Tic-Talk, thanks for joining us and see you next week.  
              Why are we still refusing to fully honour the spiritual and cultural relationship that traditional owners have to the land in Australia?        

    It doesn’t matter to the Turnbull Government that science declares that Aboriginal Australia has existed since time immemorial or that indigenous culture has existed on this continent longer than any other culture which is now part of multicultural Australia -  it stubbornly refuses to genuinely honour the spiritual and cultural relationship that traditional owners have with the land.

    June 15, 2017

    MEDIA RELEASE
    14 June 2017
    Traditional Owners slam passage of Native Title amendments
    Traditional Owners fighting Adani’s proposed coal mine have expressed profound disappointment at the passage of Attorney General Brandis’ amendments to the Native Title Act, stressing that while Mabo’s legacy has been diminished they will continue to fight for their rights.
    Senior spokesperson for the W&J Traditional Owners Council, Adrian Burragubba, says, “Adani’s problems with the Wangan and Jagalingou people are not solved this week. The trial to decide the fate of Adani’s supposed deal with the Wangan and Jagalingou Traditional Owners is scheduled for the Federal Court in March 2018.
    “Our people are the last line of legal defence against this mine and its corrosive impact on our rights, and the destruction of country that would occur.
    “Senator Brandis has been disingenuous in prosecuting his argument for these changes to native title laws, while the hands of native title bureaucrats and the mining lobby are all over the outcome.
    “This swift overturning of a Federal Court decision, without adequate consultation with Indigenous people, was a significant move, not a mere technical consideration as the Turnbull Government has tried to make out.
    “It is appalling and false for George Brandis to pretend that by holding a ‘workshop’ with the CEOs of the native title service bodies, he has the unanimous agreement of Traditional Owners across Australia. No amount of claimed ‘beseeching’ by the head of the Native Title Council, Glen Kelly, can disguise this.
    “The public were not properly informed about the bill, and nor were Indigenous people around the country, who were not consulted and did not consent to these changes.
    “We draw the line today. We declare our right to our land. There is no surrender. There is no land use agreement. We are the people from that land. We’re the rightful Traditional Owners of Wangan and Jagalingou country, and we are in court to prove that others are usurping our rights”, he said.
    Spokesperson for the W&J Traditional Owners Council, Ms Murrawah Johnson, says, “Whatever else this change does, we know that the Turnbull Government went into overdrive for Adani’s interests.
    “Brandis’ intervention in our court case challenging the sham ILUA was about Adani. Most of what Senator Matt Canavan had to say in argueing his ill-informed case for native title changes was about Adani. The Chairman of Senate Committee inquiring into the bill, Senator Ian McFarlane, referring to the native title amendments as “the Adani bill” was about Adani. And the PM telling Chairman Gautam Adani that he’d fix native title was about Adani”.
    “We are continuing to fight Adani in court and our grounds are strong. If anyone tells you this is settled because the bill was passed, they are lying”, she said.
    Adrian Burragubba says, “The Labor Opposition seems to understand this, even though they supported passage of the bill. Senator Pat Dodson went so far as to say this bill does not provide some kind of green light for the Adani mine, as some suggest.
    “Pat Dodson acknowledged that W&J have several legal actions afoot against Adani and we are glad that in the midst of this dismal response to the rights of Indigenous people some MPs, including the Greens who voted against the bill, recognise the serious claim we have to justice.
    Mr Dodson said in the Senate that: “most of this litigation will be entirely unaffected by the passage of this bill. In particular, there are very serious allegations of fraud that have been made against Adani regarding the processes under which agreements with the Wangan and Jagalingou people were purportedly reached. And those proceedings, which may impact on the validity of any ILUA, will only commence hearings in March next year. Other legal action is also underway, including a case challenging the validity of the licences issued by the Queensland government.”
    This week researchers from the University of Queensland released a report titled ‘Unfinished Business: Adani, the state, and the Indigenous rights struggle of the Wangan and Jagalingou Traditional Owners Council‘.
    For more information and to arrange interviews:  Anthony Esposito, W&J Council advisor – 0418 152 743.


              Obama to join ranks of our roadless forest heroes?        

    I had the honor Monday of joining two of my heroes — former Forest Service Chief Mike Dombeck and U.S. Representative Raul Grijalva from Arizona — to share with reporters what steps we would like to see the Obama Administration take to protect our nation’s roadless forests. Recent court rulings favored by President Bush and his oil-and-gas-industry cronies have inserted what we hope is just a temporary sliver into protection for areas that play a critical role in improving the quality of life for people and safeguarding habitat for wildlife.

    Grijalva, chairman of the House National Parks, Forests and Public Lands Subcommittee, noted that our incoming president is already a champion of these values. Obama co-sponsored legislation that would permanently protect America’s unroaded forests when he was a senator and he often mentioned their importance as a presidential candidate. Now that he’s set to take office in a week, The Wilderness Society and many of our friends in the conservation community including the Pew Environment Group can move from addressing the question of whether a new president will protect these pristine forests to how he will do so.

    Our immediate focus is on asking the new administration to make it a lot more difficult for the still Bush-heavy Forest Service to approve any projects that would destroy the integrity of our roadless forests. This can be accomplished by stipulating that any destructive activities such as road building, logging, oil and gas development, and mining be reviewed by an Obama appointee rather than allowing such decisions to be made by the Forest Service at the local level.

    There are two other items we will work with the administration to accomplish in the short-term. (The phrase “working with the administration” is a refreshing change after the last eight years.) As we all told reporters yesterday, we would like President Obama to:

    • Require the Department of Justice to vigorously defend our roadless forests in the various on-going court cases that we hope will result in a victory for the millions of people who care so deeply about roadless areas.
    • End the temporary exemption from the national roadless rule that Bush placed on the Tongass National Forest in Alaska.

    All three of the principles I’ve mentioned here are expressed in The Roosevelt Resolution, a request to help our forests that honors the legacy of President Theodore Roosevelt. By clicking on the link above, you can also listen to yesterday’s press conference so that you can hear directly from the roadless rule architect, Mr. Dombeck, and one of our most courageous public lands advocates, Rep. Grijalva.

    I don’t think it will take you long to discern why they’re heroes of mine, or why protecting our roadless forests is so close to all of our hearts.


              A crucial week for justice        
    On Tuesday we'll see if our elected political representatives yet again undo the good work of our unelected representatives as the Legal Aid Bill returns to the Commons for MPs to consider the Lords' amendments.

    Peers made changes to the Bill that would mean that the worst of the legal aid cuts in the legislation would be removed. Access to legal aid and the way that it is delivered would be protected for those who have suffered domestic violence, for vulnerable children and for disabled people.

    The government will be no doubt keen to use financial privilege as an excuse to overturn these changes like they did recently to reverse changes to their controversial welfare reforms. However, if costs are to be used as an excuse as removing access to free legal advice to hundreds of thousands of people when they need it most, perhaps Ministers should consider the £43 million spent on consultants by the MoJ in the last year and the £12m that's been wasted an an e-Working system that is years behind schedule and has virtually collapsed.

    What's really happening to our legal system here of course is that it is becoming increasingly the preserve of those who are able to pay for it. As Heather Brooke pointed out last week, while 140 local courts have been closed and legal aid is cut, £300m has been invested in the Rolls Building (home of the failed e-Working system) which is to handle high-end commercial disputes for a mostly foreign clientele.

    It's not just Russian Oligarchs that are benefiting from changes to our justice system. The Association of British Insurers has admitted it will profit from the legal aid cuts. Last year it was revealed that the Justice Minister responsible for driving through these reforms, Jonathan Djanogly will personally profit from the plans as he has a personal stake in the insurance industry. Now that's what I call financial privilege.

    Possibly the best hope of amendments - like Baroness Scotland's that ensures victims of domestic violence have access to legal aid and former Paralympian Tanya Grey Thompson's that ensures those who are eligible aren't forced to phone a call centre for advice - surviving the glare of the coalition is the lack of time Parliament has been able to afford to the legislation between the Easter break and the end of this parliamentary session. Who says MPs having long holidays is a bad thing!

    If you'd like to contact your MP to ensure we don't lose out on legal aid when we need it most visit the 38 degrees site ahead of Tuesday's vote.
              Beware sharp corners        
    Ever looked at the 38 degrees campaign site and thought to yourself, "well saving our nation's forests and healthcare from being sold off is all very well but what if I want to ban homosexuals from getting married or stop foreigners from using our education system, where do I go to sign up for that?" Well worry no more because the right have come up with their own version called Right Angle.

    Heralding itself as "Standing up for Britain's silent majority" it aims to give a voice to all those people who had concerns about stuff they presumably never even realised they were bothered enough to do anything about before now.

    So what have they gone with for their first progressive cause for social justice? Well they've 'reclaimed' a 'popular' Lib Dem policy of lifting the tax threshold to £10,000. They claim to be doing this on behalf of low earners.

    On the face of it you could be forgiven for thinking this seems like quite a fair campaign. After all they claim it would cut taxes for millions of British people, not just millionaires. But hang on, what's this? Research carried out by the Institute of Fiscal Studies that reveals that those who would really benefit from this policy would be some of the richest households in the country.

    Well that's a relief, for a moment there I thought the Tories had gone all soft on us and were standing up for the poor. It turns out that despite claims it would put £60 extra in each of our pockets, one-third of all adults would get no benefit at all as they already earn too little to earn income tax. The changes could also cause 200,000 extra families to lose child benefits.

    As Richard Murphy puts it on his Tax Research blog "Isn’t it odd that the first thing Tory front @UKRightAngle campaigns for favours the rich?"

    I look forward to their future campaigns which I am sure will unmask some of the Party's true and nastier colours.
              What have HMRC got to hide? About £90bn in lost tax.        
    Why are HMRC so reluctant to tell us how they work out their 'official' figure for the tax gap?

    The latest figure they released this week has it at £35bn. An astronomical figure I'm sure you'll agree - when you think that this is the amount that goes uncollected every year in taxes because of evasion, avoidance or HMRC just being too damned stretched to collect what's owed. However, if I was to tell you that tax experts at the tax justice network reckon this figure is grossly underestimated and that the real figure is actually ooh not just twice, not even just thrice but almost four times this figure then you get the picture.

    It's a pretty ugly picture when you think of all the cuts being made to public services in the name of reducing the deficit. There is over £120bn out there that our economy is losing out on, largely because of wealthy individuals and multinationals companies are exploiting the system and are being allowed to get away without paying their fair share.

    Bet who's right about the figure? Well, while the tax justice network have published how they arrived at their figure, it's difficult to say with any certainty how HMRC arrived at theirs' because they simply refuse to share their workings out. As any Maths teacher will tell you, it's important to show your workings to prove you haven't just arrived at your answer by mere chance or guess work.

    Until HMRC share their methodology, I'm inclined to believe the independent experts who've set out why HMRC have got the tax gap wrong. But whatever the true figure, the scandal of massive tax dodging by the wealthy while the rest of us are expected to tighten our belts so much we've run out of notches continues.
              I'd pay more tax to see Richard Littlejohn survive on benefits        
    I shouldn't read Richard Littlejohn's weekly diatribe of hate but every now and then I get copied into one of his more repugnant observations on life.

    This week he chimes into the economic debate with "More tax? we'd all be better off on benefits." He roundly condemns Lib Dem plans to make the rich pay more tax. Well, I'm told Littlejohn earns something in the region of £750,000 a year for his column so it's no wonder he's not keen on the idea. I mean not everyone can be as fair minded and benelovant on the issue as Warren Buffett. However, what I find deplorable is his insistance on having a go at the most vulnerable people in our society to make his point.

    His rant about paying more taxes is basically an excuse to have a go at benefit claimants and asylum seekers.

    "We’d all be better off on benefits, except there wouldn’t be anyone left to pay for those benefits. Vince Cable favours a ‘mansion tax’ on homes worth more than £2 million. Will that apply to the Somali asylum seeker who has just taken up residence in a £2 million house in West Hampstead."
    Of course we would Richard. I'd like to see you survive on £67.50 a week. In fact, I'd pay more tax myself to see it happen. Better still, I'd like to see him experience first-hand what it's really like to be an asylum seeker.

    We could put him up in Colnbrook immigration prison where three asylum seekers have died since 2 July or have members of his family detained in Yarl's Wood where one child spend 166 days in detention before her third birthday.

    These are the people who really don't have a voice. It's a shame those that speak the loudest like Littlejohn see them as easy fodder for their bigotry. Maybe it's because he knows they can't talk back.

              From the ground up: building just and peaceful communities in DR Congo        

    For many living in war-torn DR Congo, access to fast and effective justice is rare. Local disputes over land, farming or marriage can quickly escalate to wider violence that feeds into complex local conflicts. This leaves people without ways of resolving their conflicts peacefully and can entrench dangerous cycles of violence. Here, FOCHI's Peace Courts are having a big impact for people on the ground.

    The post From the ground up: building just and peaceful communities in DR Congo appeared first on Peace Direct.


              Weathering the Storm: Creative EPSA Solutions in a Time of Crisis - by Julia Bosse, Michael Burnett, Alexander Heichlinger, Claude Rongione, Harrie Scholtens        

    The economic storm faced by European public administrations continues unabated. Budget cuts and austerity measures coupled with unpleasant tax increases have been extensively applied, though they have not always delivered the expected results.

    Difficult choices lie ahead for Europe’s public sector in order to stabilise public finances, while continuing to deliver the services needed more than ever by an increasing number of citizens as a result of the economic pressure. Trends over time which exacerbate such pressures are unlikely to be reversed in the medium term.

    The EPSA 2013 edition has collected a rich harvest of 230 solutions from across all levels of public administration and from 26 European countries and EU institutions, which can all be proud of their achievements and also showcase how they are dealing with these challenging times.

    This publication aims to sketch out the trends, ideas and solutions in the various creative public management and service reforms on the one hand, whilst pinpointing common elements or obstacles in their delivery – The Research Part. Key findings, among many others, include active strategies to promote economic growth, the ability to enhance social inclusion, the use of transparency as a means to promote better governance, or the smart deployment of ICT to boost trust in government and improve service delivery.

    On the other hand, the best and top-ranked 47 practices (15 nominees and 32 additional best practice certificate recipients) are subsequently described, allowing the reader to not only get an idea of the innovation and drivers behind the cases, but also to directly contact the owners behind the applications in order to encourage the learning and transfer potential. These outstanding public achievements span sectors such as economic and urban development, sustainable development, justice and police, education and training, sports and youth, public health, social media, and human resources management. This part – The Catalogue – is supported by data and statistics on the applications (e.g. type, country, size, fully or partly EU co-financed).

    In a nutshell, the EPSA 2013 book demonstrates – again! – how the public sector has tried to resolve the various urgent challenges linked to the current crisis, by combining creativity and sustainability, accompanied by an often needed passion in their solutions.


              Senate Reauthorizes JJDPA, Setting Up a Conference Committee with the House        

    Before adjourning for the August recess, the Senate quietly passed the Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention Reauthorization Act, S. 860, by a voice vote. The bill reauthorizes the Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention Act of 1974, the authorization for which expired in 2007, and provides long overdue reform to the juvenile justice system.

    For as quiet as passage was, the reauthorization of the Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention Act (JJDPA) is notable. Last year, Sen. Tom Cotton (R-Ark.), who ridiculously once said that the United States has "under-incarceration problem," blocked a similar bill. In fact, he was literally the only member of the upper chamber who stood in the way of its passage.

    Sen. Cotton's objection to the bill was over the proposed phase out of the valid court order (VCOs) exception. A violation of a VCO would allow state and local judges to detain juveniles for status offenses -- actions such as curfew violations, truancy, and tobacco use that are offenses only because of the person's status as a minor. In some states, juveniles who commit a status offense and are subject to a VCO are detained with serious offenders, increasing a juvenile's risk of recidivism.

    The use of VCOs has been in decline nationwide. Last year, however, Sen. Cotton's spokesperson defended his intransigence, noting that Arkansas has one of the highest VCO use rates in the country. The use of VCOs in Arkansas had been in decline, dropping by roughly half between FY 2013 and FY 2014, according to the Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention. The most recent report from the Arkansas Division of Youth Services showed that 46 percent of youths who entered the states juvenile justice system had committed misdemeanors or violated probation for adjudicated for a misdemeanor. The cost of detaining a youth Arkansas is nearly $64,000 annually.

    Because Sen. Cotton wouldn't agree to allow JJDPA reauthorization to move in the Senate, the bill that would have reauthorized JJDPA died.

    The issue was given new life earlier this year in the new Congress. The House passed the Juvenile Justice Reform Act, H.R. 1809, in May by voice vote. The House version of JJDPA reauthorization includes a phase of VCOs. The Senate, however, still struggled to get passed Sen. Cotton's strange desire to ensure that judges could essentially lock children up for status offenses.

    The Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention Reauthorization Act, introduced by Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa), offers key reforms. The bill reauthorizes JJDPA, prohibits the placement of juveniles in adult facilities, places a greater emphasis on evidence-based recidivism reduction programs, and increases transparency.

    Unfortunately, the bill doesn't include a phase out of the VCO exception, though it does prohibit the detention of juveniles who commit status offenses, with one exception -- if a juvenile violates a VCO. In short, Sen. Cotton got his way, and judges will be able to place children who violate VCOs because of a status offense.

    There is still an opportunity to address the concerns about the use of VCOs. Appointed members of the House Education and Workforce Committee and the Senate Judiciary Committee will likely enter into a conference committee and produce a final version of the bill that rectifies the differences between the two bills. If language phasing out the VCO exception in put in the conference report, it can't be amended from the floor of either chamber. The conference report is given a straight up or down vote.

    Hopefully, the House conferees will insist that the VCO exception for status offenses should be phased out in the conference report.


              The Best Part-Time Job in America        

    The fix is in. Did you know, Congress only works 33 percent of the year?

    The base salary for all rank-and-file members of Congress is $174,000, more than triple the median household income of the United States. In exchange for that generous salary, members of Congress work one out of three days.

    The House of Representatives was in session for only 18 hours a week in 2013. Members worked only 130 days in 2015. In case you needed more evidence that Congress doesn’t earn its salary, consider this: House and Senate members only worked eight days in April.

    Eight work days in a month, with an annual salary of $174,000. Can you imagine? Must be nice!

    Meanwhile, in the real world, the average American worker puts in more hours than a medieval peasant. Full-time U.S. employees use only 54 percent of their paid vacation days, sacrificing the rest for fear of falling behind or being replaced. The idea of a congressman skipping that much vacation is laughable, at best.

    I was raised to believe that how people spend their time is a direct reflection of their priorities. The United States holds more than $19 trillion in debt, not including unfunded liabilities. Our health care, immigration, and justice systems are in desperate need of reform. Public schools are underperforming, while families and small businesses are being taxed out of financial security.

    Where is our elected leadership? Clearly, they have other priorities.

    Members of Congress spend most of their time in their districts, schmoozing with donors, speaking at private events, and securing their next elections. The average House member spent $53,170 of taxpayer money on travel in 2013.

    These aren’t legislators, these are professional campaigners.

    The American people aren’t being heard by government because the game is rigged. Washington isn’t broken. It’s “fixed.”


              Venezuela is Socialism's Last Nail in the Coffin        

    From a so-called “economic miracle” to a human rights disaster, Venezuela has followed in the footsteps of literally every single socialist or communist country ever with its country in complete collapse. Crime is on the rise, the people are starving, protests are going all throughout the country, and unconfirmed rumors are coming out that President Nicolas Maduro is considering leaving.

    In the never ending desire to achieve an impossible utopia, Venezuela is living in a nightmare that may serve as the best evidence against government mismanagement.

    To be blunt, the people are starving. Roughly 75 percent of the country lost 19 pounds in 2016. This actually coincides with reports that Venezuelans were looking for food in the trash.

    It is not just food that Venezuelans seem to be running out of at the moment. The country is lacking medicine, toilet paper, and even goods for religious sacraments as well. All sorts of goods are disappearing from the country faster and faster.

    Meanwhile, their economy is in complete shambles. At the start of the year, inflation had hit 800 percent while their GDP had shrunk by 19 percent. To make matters worse, 2016 marked its third year of recession.

    Of course, the elite of the country have not seemed to notice the problems their citizens are facing. Accusations fly of the leaders of Venezuela living luxurious lifestyles despite the recession. Unsurprisingly, reports have the daughter of Venezuela’s last President Hugo Chavez at a networth of $4.2 billion.

    So the big question is: why is Venezuela falling apart? The simplest answer is government mismanagement as it started taking over the economy. Under the watch of Socialists Hugo Chavez and his successor Nicolas Maduro, the socialist leadership in the country has greatly increased its influence in economic affairs, resulting in decreased investment, business failures, and scarcity.

    Over the past decade and a half, the Venezuelan government has nationalized multiple industries, including oil, agriculture, finance, steel, electricity, and telecommunications. Unsurprisingly, this led to significant ruin in the various industries it controlled, especially oil. Case in point, the Chavez regime largely underfunded the investment necessary to bring about increased oil production.

    Large portions of oil revenues were transferred to generous social programs but there was lackluster reinvestment to make sure that more oil was produced to keep revenue flowing. As a result, oil production starting dropping consistently after 2007 which saw a major decline in revenue (and helped lead to the debt that caused hyper inflation). Additionally, Chavez demanded more money from oil companies investing in the country and the ones that refused saw their assets seized. With such a clear lack of respect for human rights, it should come as no surprise that foreign investment has been on the decline recently in the country which is also hurting business and revenue.

    To make matters worse, many workers were fired and replaced with government loyalists. In one case, a company that had never created an oil well was hired to create several since it had ties to the government. The lack of experienced workers unsurprisingly has also added to the decline of the oil industry that was a huge part of the government’s revenue.

    Just about every industry the government has touched has fallen apart. Steel production was reduced by 70 percent after it was nationalized, food production has been on the decline while the government redistributed farmland for the production of food the land was not suited for, and the Venezuelan government is instituting blackouts to reduce consumption to reduce electricity use due to decreased supply. Overall, it seems Venezuela is in the process of running its economy into the ground.

    Venezuela has also added newer regulations and laws to improve the economic situation of its country that had the opposite effect. Case in point, the minimum wage was increased recently by 50 percent despite the fact overall wages still decreased by 17 percent. Other reports have increased labor protections actually hurting business while price controls that were implemented to reduce profits and keep prices low also helped to reduce food productions which also helped cause the food crisis. With all this in mind, it should come as no surprise that the number of businesses in Venezuela has gone down from 800,000 in 1998 to 230,000 in 2016, a decline of 570,000.

    It is important to remember though that none of this should even be looked at as being done as a love for the people from the state. As was noted by a former education minister, the goal of the people reforms is “‘not to take the people out of poverty so they become middle class and then turn into escuálidos’ (a derogatory term to denote opposition members).” Translation: it’s not for their benefit but to create a dependent class of supporters.

    For more evidence of how the government does not care about its people, look no further than its human rights records. The Maduro government has been seizing power by stacking the courts with supportive justices and then met the protests against that with violent crackdowns on dissenters. Meanwhile, accusations of sham elections are now flying in the wake of an election referendum to give him the power to rewrite the country’s constitution. In the end, the increase in power has come to the detriment of the people backed by phony promises.

    As is always the case, the promise of helping the people through government intervention completely falls apart. Just like with China and Russia, the result is always economic ruin with the well connected few reaping the benefits. Unfortunately, the US is not free from these mistakes as states like Connecticut or cities like Seattle implementing their own interventions in the economy that results in disaster. If the US wants to head down the path same economic path as Venezuela that leads to destruction and corruption, it will inevitably end there.


              The Weekly Fix: Double Standard        

    The fix is in. Did you know, corporations like General Electric Co. (GE) spend more money on lobbyists than they pay in taxes?

    The federal government currently taxes corporations at 35 percent. While many argue the rate is too high, you don’t hear companies like GE complaining about it. That’s because they aren’t paying it.

    Over the past 15 years, GE’s federal income tax rate averaged only 5.2 percent. General Electric paid no federal taxes in 2010, despite earning $5.1 billion in U.S. profits. Instead, the company claimed a tax benefit of $3.2 billion.

    Meanwhile, GE executives awarded themselves more than $75 million in compensation and paid lobbyists a total of $39 million that same year- all while laying off their own employees.

    How was this possible? It was an inside job. General Electric’s tax planning team includes former employees from the Treasury, IRS, and congressional tax-writing committees. GE doesn’t have a tax compliance team, it has a tax defiance team.

    This is how the revolving door of power works in Washington. Entry-level staffers move to our nation’s capital and work as “public servants” for a few years. They learn the rules of the game, then cash out in the private sector to help lobbying firms and corporations like General Electric manipulate the system.

    And the door spins ‘round and ‘round ...

    No wonder Fortune 500 companies are so quiet on the sidelines while grassroots America fights to reform the tax code. They’ve already cut a deal behind closed doors.

    With a Republican-led Congress and White House, there is a serious opportunity for tax and welfare reform in 2018. It’s time to finally level the playing field. Any serious GOP entitlement reform effort must begin with corporate welfare reform.

    Everyday families can’t afford entire teams of lawyers and lobbyists dedicated to avoiding taxes. We work hard, and play by the rules. Political insiders and corporate America should do the same.

    The American people aren’t being heard by government because the game is rigged. Washington isn’t broken. It’s “fixed.”


              Support the Prison Reform and Redemption Act, H.R. 3356        

    On behalf of FreedomWorks activists nationwide, I urge you to contact your representative and encourage him or her to cosponsor the Prison Reform and Redemption Act, H.R. 3356, introduced by Rep. Doug Collins (R-Ga.). This bill would require the Attorney General to develop an offender risk and needs assessment system and incentivizes offenders to lower their risk of recidivism.

    On a fiscal level, this bill simply makes sense. Right now, taxpayers are not getting a return on their investment. In 2005, the Bureau of Justice Statistics an office of the Department of Justice tracked over 400,000 offenders in over 30 states after their release from prison. The study found that within three years 67.8 percent reoffended and in five years 76.6 percent reoffended. This failure rate is unacceptable, and Congress must change the direction by utilizing evidenced-based practices to reduce recidivism.

    Thankfully, the states – the laboratories of policy innovation – have shown that rehabilitative programming in state prisons reduces recidivism and enhances public safety. In 2007, for example, Texas began the first phase of its justice reinvestment initiative, using a data-driven approach to corrections to reduce recidivism. Crime in the Lone Star State is now at its lowest rate 1968. More than 30 states, including Georgia and South Carolina, have adopted similar justice reinvestment initiatives.

    The Prison Reform and Redemption Act would require the Attorney General to develop a post-sentencing risk and needs assessment. All prisoners in the federal prison system will be assigned recidivism reduction programming. The Bureau of Prisons would be responsible for the implementation of the risk and needs assessments for each prisoner and development of recidivism reduction programming.

    Each offender will be assessed for risk on an individual level to develop a comprehensive plan based on his or her need and probability of reoffending. Utilizing private public partnerships in this capacity would allow non-profit organizations, educational institutions, and private sector entities to build relationships and community for the most vulnerable citizens in our society. The bill would incentivize prisoners to reduce their risk of recidivism. For every 30 days of successfully completed recidivism reduction programming, prisoners will ten days of time credits. Prisoners can earn an additional five days, for a total of 15 days, after two successful risk assessment periods. Those prisoners who have are considered low or no risk of recidivism can earn an additional five days, for a total of 15, provided that their risk of recidivism doesn’t increase over two risk assessment periods.

    Certain categories offenders – including violent offenders, sex offenders, and terrorists – would not be eligible to earn time credits.

    The Prison Reform and Redemption Act would allow for great access to visitation and phone privileges, create a pilot program to address the heroin and opioid epidemic, and prohibit the use restraints of pregnant offenders unless the offender poses a serious threat. The bill would require the Bureau of Prisons to collect statistical and demographic information to be provided to Congress on an annual basis.

    Congress has fallen behind the states on this important issue. While other policy changes – such as sentencing reforms and reentry reforms – are needed, this bill would bring a key component of state-level success to the federal prison system, offering prisoners an opportunity for restorative justice while enhancing public safety. For these reasons, I urge you to contact your representative and encourage him or her to cosponsor the Prison Reform and Redemption Act, H.R. 3356.

    Sincerely,

    Adam Brandon, President, FreedomWorks


              States Lead the Way on Criminal Justice Reform        

    Over the past several months, Attorney General Jeff Sessions has taken a step back on federal justice reform efforts, regressing to purportedly “tough on crime” stances. From advising increased penalties for nonviolent offenders to more recently promising an increase in the use of civil asset forfeiture by the federal government, Sessions has been doing everything in his power to give the Department of Justice (DOJ)’s full support to 80s-era policies from which many conservatives have abandoned in favor of evidenced-based practices that reduce recidivism and enhance public safety.

    A study from the Urban Institute found that increased penalties were at best mixed in reducing crime with other factors beyond incarceration driving down the incarceration rate, no evidence it drove down drug crime, and the use of imprisonment as a deterrent to be very costly. As of 2015, the US has the highest incarceration rate in the developed world at 25 percent while the total number incarcerated has increased by 500 percent over the last forty years.

    Meanwhile, the recidivism rate within three years of release increased by five percent between 1983 and 1994, highlighting a failure of harsher sentences to reduce both incarceration and reimprisonment. Keeping in mind that over-incarceration costs taxpayers at all levels of government around $80 billion each year, and those costs are only rising, it comes as no surprise that the “tough on crime” mindset has become both costly and unpopular after failing to get tangible results.

    What is surprising about this is that the states seem to be taking the opposite direction in pursuing criminal justice reform. From increased protections implemented on civil asset forfeiture to expanding licensing opportunities, states have been leading the way in creating new methods to reduce crime, incarceration, and recidivism. The amount of work and variation is actually quite amazing.

    One such reform was pursued in the state of Kentucky. Republican Gov. Matt Bevin signed SB 120 into law, which would eliminate a blanket ban on getting a job license and instead transfer it to a licensing board which will review each case. This will open up opportunities for previous offenders to now get jobs which will make it easier to reintegrate into society.

    The state legislation comes at a very important time for both the country and the state of Kentucky. A report from Reason magazine highlighted that prevention from getting a license due to a criminal record can increase the recidivism rate. There have been repeated cases where individuals have had problems getting licenses because blanket bans like the one in Kentucky have prevented them from getting jobs.

    A study by Arizona State University economist Stephen Slivinski found that recidivism increased by a whopping 9.4 percent in states that had blanket bans for former offenders while in states where it was easier for them to receive licenses it decreased by 4.2 percent. In addition, it was found that “between 60 and 75 percent of released prisoners remain unemployed one year after getting out” which is a problem since a Manhattan Institute Study found that employed individuals are more likely to return if they do not find a job relatively soon to release. Overall, a job is more likely to get people out of crime and reintegrated into society so reform like that in Kentucky will be a step in the right direction.

    For Kentucky, especially at the moment, this will help address problems it is facing. At the moment, Kentucky is failing to fill 110,000 job openings and ranks as having the 47th lowest job participation rate in the country. Getting reformed offenders into the job market will reduce that rate and help get new applicants for the jobs it is failing to fill.

    Similar concepts have also been pursued in the state of Illinois. As the Reason magazine article also notes, Illinois had passed a law in 2011 to ban all licensed healthcare professionals with a previous criminal record. This had initially been done since sex offenders had somehow managed to get licensed as doctors and nurses, but the problem is that the law was far too broad, applying to all former offenders as well.

    This included one Carlos Romero, who had left prison in 1993 and had been working for two years as a respiratory therapist with no legal issues after release until his license was revoked in 2013 because of the 2011 law. Romero and several other individuals who had not committed a legal wrong after release had lost their licenses. In response, he worked with State Sen. Iris Martinez (D-Chicago) to create an appeals process that would allow him and others with a previous conviction to make an appeal to get their license back. In 2016, Republican Gov. Bruce Rauner signed the legislation into law, allowing Carlos and countless others a chance to get their jobs back and remain proud contributors to the economy.

    This is not the only reform the state of Illinois has pursued. Earlier this year, the state legislature passed a bill to add burden of proof requirements to the police’s use of civil asset forfeiture, a tool that allows police to seize from accused individuals who have not been convicted. Though the bill has not yet been signed by the governor, it has veto proof majorities in both houses. Considering the fact that Chicago Police Department has acquired $150 million in assets from low income and minority neighborhoods and it has included “things like flashy jewelry, flat screen TVs, and a copy of the Call of Duty: Ghosts video game,” this reform is clearly needed.

    Kentucky and Illinois are not the only states have pursued reforms. In Nebraska, State Sen. Laura Ebke (L-Crete) is pursuing the same reforms as Kentucky, Republican Gov. Doug Ducey has implemented civil asset forfeiture reforms in Arizona to allow for more transparency, the state of Louisiana passed ten new laws on various justice reform topics this year, and many, many, MANY other states have done similar work. It would appear that across the country, states doing everything to find new and smarter ways to address and reduce crime in ways that drive down recidivism and restore rights.

    The DOJ is continuing to pursue “tough on crime” policies, but the states continue to believe it is better to be “smart on crime.” Increased penalties have been tried for decades and there is lackluster evidence that it has accomplished its goals at a reasonable cost. Meanwhile, states are pursuing newer, fairer, smarter, and better ways to reduce crime, protect rights, and promote outreach. With trends the way they are now, the country will like continue down this path with the states continuing to lead the way on justice reform.


              The Weekly Fix: Rules for Thee, but Not for Me        

    The fix is in. Did you know, members of Congress can exclude themselves from federal laws they don’t want to follow? Taxpayers are forced to play by the rules, while lawmakers in Washington get a free pass.

    The Congressional Accountability Act (CAA) of 1995 was created to remedy some of these injustices. In theory, the CAA requires members of Congress to abide by some of the same employment and workplace safety laws as any other business or federal government entity.

    But in reality, members of Congress continue to dodge their way around significant legislative policy.

    Congress has the power to kick you off your health care plan, yet lawmakers excused themselves from the ObamaCare exchanges. Congress requires federal agencies to provide citizens with internal records, yet lawmakers exempted themselves from the Freedom of Information Act, along with numerous other record-keeping and transparency laws (including whistleblower protections).

    Congress supports sending citizens to jail for insider trading, yet lawmakers are allowed to make stock trades based on non-public information. Congress passed the Sarbanes-Oxley Act to protect citizens from dishonest private sector CEOs, yet lawmakers shamelessly lie about the costs of their policy agenda.

    Not surprisingly, the Office of Compliance for the U.S. Congress revealed to the press that representatives often fail to produce records and information critical to investigations in a timely manner- or sometimes even at all. Compliance has no legal authority to subpoena information, leaving them at the complete mercy of legislative offices.

    Why are members of Congress so tone deaf? Because they aren’t living in the same reality as the rest of America. They are shielded from the consequences of their actions. Forget equal treatment under the law, the official slogan of the Legislative Branch should be: Rules for thee, but not for me.

    The American people aren’t being heard by government because the game is rigged. Washington isn’t broken. It’s “fixed.”


              Jeff Sessions’ Push for Civil Asset Forfeiture Should Concern Conservatives        

    FreedomWorks Vice President of Legislative Affairs Jason Pye released the following statement on the recent action from Attorney General Jeff Sessions to increase the power of law enforcement to confiscate property of people who are innocent until proven guilty:

    “Jeff Sessions' tendency to expand state power against people who have not been found guilty should concern conservatives. We've made real progress in curbing civil asset forfeiture in the states, and Sessions would usurp these reforms and take property from people who have never even been convicted of a crime.

    “The Justice Department’s own Inspector General raised serious concerns about the forfeiture program in a report in March, saying it lacks proper oversight. By expanding government power to take property without appropriate due process, even when state laws don't allow it, Sessions is signaling he answers to no one.

    “FreedomWorks calls on Congress to rein in our attorney general and pass aggressive civil asset forfeiture reform now."


              The White Theatre at The J Announces 2017-2018 Season;        

    Excitement is in the air as The Jewish Community Center of Greater Kansas City announces its 2017-2018 season of arts and cultural offerings at the White Theatre.

    The 13th season of the White Theatre, produced by The J's Arts + Culture Department, includes something for everyone, including a new partnership with the Coterie Theatre that will co-produce the regional theatrical premier of Disney's Tony Award-winning musical, Newsies, during July 2018.

    The White Theatre season also includes concerts to visual arts, comedic plays to thought-provoking dramas as well as dance and literature presentations. The inspirational season includes four locally produced shows, several musical concerts, a choreography showcase and a new artist-in-residence offering with the Kinnor Philharmonic.

    The season includes:

    • November 4-19, 2017: Mel Brooks' comedic musical, Young Frankenstein (local production), directed by Missy Koonce.

    • December 2 & 3, 2017: The Sarah Play produced by the In[Heir]itance Project.

    • January 1, 2018: Kinnor Philharmonic, The J's artists-in-residence, perform first of two concerts; the second concert is June 10, 2018.

    • January 6, 2018: YidLife Crisis-Live! starring Jamie Elman & Eli Batalion, the creators and stars of the award-winning Yiddish comedy web series YidLife Crisis.

    • February 3-18, 2018: Tony Award-winning musical, The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee (local production), directed by Steven Eubank.

    • March 17-25, 2018: The Tony-Award winning play, The Miracle Worker (local production) directed by Bill Christie.

    • April 8: Kansas City's professional dance showcase, Open Stage at The J.

    • April 11-14: Wiesenthal, the riveting true story of Simon Wiesenthal, nicknamed the "Jewish James Bond".

    • July 7-29, 2018: Disney's Newsies (in collaboration with The Coterie Theatre), the captivating story of a band of underdogs who become unlikely heroes.

    (Full descriptions for each event are available at TheWhiteTheatre.org. Auditions for various productions will be held throughout the year.)

    ABOUT THE SHOWS

    Young Frankenstein is a hilarious musical based on the classic Frankenstein story, with a Mel Brooks comedic twist. The musical is an adaptation of Brooks legendary film. With a book by Brooks and Thomas Meehan and music and lyrics by Brooks, audiences will roar with laughter as they follow Frederick Frankenstein, the grandson of the infamous Victor Frankenstein. The younger Frankenstein travels to Transylvania to inherit his family estate and zaniness ensues, complete with a tap-dancing monster.

    The Sarah Play is in the creative stages of The In[Heir]itance Project as part of a national series. Playwright Jon Adam Ross presents the story of the biblical matriarch, Sarah, in conversation with contemporary realities in Kansas City. Developed during workshops with local clergy, artists and community members as well as interfaith groups, The Sarah Play reflects local perspectives on sacred texts.

    YidLife Crisis Live! starring Jamie Elman & Eli Batalion, the creators and stars of the award-winning Yiddish comedy web series YidLife Crisis present a night of shtick, schmoozing and inspiration. This duo of seasoned performers mix skits, discussion, screenings and use the "trojan horse" of comedy to bring Yiddish and yiddishkayt to the forefront and engage the topic of Jewish identity for all.

    The 25th Annual Putnam Spelling Bee is a riotous musical ride complete with audience participation and comedic genius. This Tony and Drama Desk Award-winning musical features an eclectic group of 6 awkward tweens as they vie for the spelling championship of a lifetime. While candidly disclosing hilarious and touching stories from their home lives, the tweens spell their way through a series of (potentially made-up) words, hoping never to hear the soul-crushing, pout-inducing, life un-affirming "ding" of the bell that signals a spelling mistake.

    The Miracle Worker, the Tony-Award winning play by William Gibson, takes the audience through the daily struggles of Helen Keller, who is blind, deaf and mute. With the help of her devoted and sometimes defiant teacher Annie Sullivan, Helen is finally awakened from the darkness in this emotional story. (Special school performances are available.)

    Wiesenthal focuses on the story of one man, Simon Wiesenthal, who devoted his life to bringing 1,100 Nazi war criminals to justice. Wiesenthal's dedication to this one purpose - seeking justice for the six million Jews murdered during the Holocaust - is the focus of the play. This production focuses on this courageous man's wit and wisdom, tenacity and dedication to help repair the world.

    Disney's Newsies marks The Coterie and the White Theatre's first partnership, as well as the Kansas City region's first locally produced production of the Tony Award winning musical. Disney's Newsies, based on the 1992 motion picture, features a high energy, explosive song and dance score by eight-time Academy Award winner Alan Menken (Beauty and the Beast, Aladdin, Sister Act) and Jack Feldman and a book by four-time Tony Award winner Harvey Fierstein (La Cage aux Folles, Torch Song Trilogy). It will be co-directed by Coterie Producing Artistic Director, Jeff Church, and Jerry Jay Cranford, who will also serve as choreographer, with musical direction by Pam Williamson, veteran of 10 musicals at the White Theatre. Disney's Newsies will feature a cast of all-local professional and non-professional adult and youth actors. Auditions for Disney's Newsies are set for December 17 at 2 p.m. at the White Theatre. More information on auditions for the entire 2017/18 season can be found at TheWhiteTheatre.org.

    The White Theatre's season tickets are available now. Season ticket holders enjoy many perks including preferred seating, free ticket exchange, friends and family discounts and more! The new Flex Five pass option allows the season ticket holder to design their own package with five tickets to use at their discretion. Performances for the Kinnor Philharmonic are an "add on event" to the regular season ticket.

    In addition to season tickets, the Arts + Culture Patron program has been enhanced to provide additional "perks" at every level including complimentary tickets, seatback surprises on select show nights, tax deduction or your support and more. For a complete list of patron benefits visit TheWhiteTheatre.org.

    Individual tickets for the 2017-2018 season go on sale September 1. Tickets may be ordered online at TheWhiteTheatre.org, by phone at (913) 327-8054 or in person at the White Theatre's Box Office.

    In its effort to expand its offerings, additional Arts + Culture events will include the Kansas City Jewish Film Festival in April and May, literary salons and the Midwest Jewish Artists Lab.

    Discover The J's White Theatre at 5801 West 115th, Overland Park, Kansas 66211, conveniently located at 115th & Nall. Contact our box office at (913) 327-8054 or by email at boxoffice@thejkc.org. The White Theatre box office is open Monday through Friday 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. For more information on everything Arts + Culture at The J and the White Theatre check out our website at TheWhiteTheatre.org.

    About "The J"

    Established more than 100 years ago, the Jewish Community Center of Greater Kansas City-The J, provides a warm welcome to families of all backgrounds. The J's all-in-one hub for health, learning and well-being elevates the lives of the community and its members with programs of excellence in fitness, sports, theatre, arts + culture, senior adult programming and youth services including summer camps and child development. Everyone can "live up" at The J, located in Overland Park, Kansas, and at thejkc.org.


              Scales of justice: Latest round-up of convictions        
    OXFORD MAGISTRATES
              Scales of justice: Latest round-up of convictions        
    OXFORD MAGISTRATES
              Scales of justice: latest round-up of convictions        
    OXFORD MAGISTRATES
              ASP.NET Hosting Comparison – UKWindowsHostASP.NET vs Netcetera        
     UKWindowsHostASP.NET and Netcetera are two big Windows ASP.NET hosting provider in UK. Millions of people in this world using their ASP.NET hosting services. In this review, we will make comparison between them based on price, performance, reliability, and also support. The UKWindowsHostASP.NET vs Netcetera acts as a justice to help readers make a right choice. This comparison analyzes…
              STUDIES: FBI Crime Report Shows Murder Rates Remain Higher in Death Penalty States        

    The U.S. Department of Justice released its annual FBI Uniform Crime Report for 2014, reporting no change in the national murder rate since 2013. In the Northeast, the region with the fewest executions, the murder rate declined 5.7%, from 3.5 to 3.3 per 100,000 population. The murder rate was 1.7 times higher in the South, which carries out the most executions of any region. That region saw a 3.4% increase in the homicide rate, and its 5.5 murders per 100,00 population remained the highest rate of any region. Murder rates in the West and Midwest declined by 3.8% and 5.4%, respectively. A DPIC analysis of weighted murder rates found that death penalty jurisdictions continue to have a higher murder rate than non-death penalty jurisdictions (including Washington, D.C.): 4.7 per 100,000 compared to 3.8 per 100,000. Ten of the eleven states with the highest murder rates have the death penalty, while six of the eight lowest do not.

    ("Crime in the United States, 2014", U.S. Dept. of Justice (2015); DPIC analysis posted October 30, 2015).  See Deterrence and Murder Rates.

    REGION 2014 2013
    Northeast 3.3 3.5
    West 3.9 4.0
    Midwest 4.3 4.6
    South 5.5 5.3
    NATIONAL 4.5 4.5

    Rates are number of murders per 100,000 persons.


              STUDIES: Murder Rate Highest in South; Northeast Has Sharpest Decline        
    REGION 2013 Murder Rate 2012 Murder Rate Mur
    Northeast 3.5 3.8
    West 4.0 4.2
    Midwest 4.5 4.7
    South 5.3 5.5
    NATIONAL 4.5 4.7

     On November 10 the Justice Department released its annual Uniform Crime Report for 2013. The report revealed an overall decline of 5.2% in the national murder rate. The Northeast had the lowest murder rate--3.5 murders per 100,000 people--and the sharpest decline from last year. The South again had the highest murder rate (5.3). The West had the second-lowest murder rate (4.0), followed by the Midwest (4.5). The states with the highest murder rates in the country were Louisiana (10.8) and Alabama (7.2). The states with the lowest rates were Iowa (1.4) and Hawaii (1.5). The Northeast has also had the fewest executions in the modern era, with 4, and none since 2005. The South has had the highest number of executions (1,132) since 1976. The average murder rate for states with the death penalty (4.4) was higher than the average rate for states without the death penalty (3.4).

    Among the ten states with the lowest murder rates, six have abolished the death penalty. Overall, as the use of the death penalty has declined, the murder rate has continued to fall.

    ("Crime in the United States, 2013", U.S. Dept. of Justice, Nov. 10, 2014).  See Deterrence and Murder Rates.



     


              STUDIES: FBI Releases Report Including State Murder Rates for 2012        

    The U.S. Department of Justice recently released its annual FBI Uniform Crime Report for 2012. The national murder rate remained approximately the same in 2012 as in 2011. The Northeast, the region with the fewest executions, had the lowest murder rate of any region, and its murder rate decreased 3.4% from the previous year. The South, which carries out the most executions of any region, again had the highest murder rate in 2012. The murder rate in the West remained about the same, while the rate in the Midwest increased slightly. Six of the nine states with the lowest murder rates are states without the death penalty. The average murder rate of death penalty states was 4.7, while the average murder rate of states without the death penalty was 3.7 (not weighted by population).

    ("Crime in the United States, 2012", U.S. Dept. of Justice (2013); DPIC analysis posted October 28, 2013).  See Deterrence and Murder Rates.

    REGION
    2012
    2011
    Northeast 3.8 3.9
    West 4.2 4.2
    Midwest 4.7 4.5
    South 5.5 5.5
    NATIONAL 4.7
    4.7

    Rates are number of murders per 100,000 persons.


              STUDIES: FBI Preliminary Crime Report for 2012        

    The Federal Bureau of Investigation recently released the preliminary findings of its annual Uniform Crime Report for 2012. The final report will likely be published in October, but the initial statistics indicate the number of murders in the U.S. increased slightly by 1.5% from 2011. Three regions of the country showed an increase in murders, while one region declined. Murders in the Northeast decreased by 4.4%. The number of murders increased by 3.3% in the Midwest, 2.5% in the South, and 2.5% in the West. The entire Northeast has not carried out an execution since 2005 and accounts for less than 1% of the executions in the country since the death penalty was reinstated in 1976. It consistently has the lowest murder rate for the 4 regions. The South, which regularly has the highest murder rate, has been responsible for 82% of the executions; the Midwest 12%; and the West 6%.

    (“Preliminary Annual Uniform Crime Report, January-December, 2012,” U.S. Dept. of Justice, June 2013; DPIC posted, Aug. 14, 2013).  See Deterrence and Murder Rates.


              STUDIES: FBI Releases 2011 Crime Report Showing Drop in Murder Rates        

    On October 29, the U.S. Justice Department released the annual FBI Uniform Crime Report for 2011, indicating that the national murder rate dropped 1.5% from 2010. This decline occurred at a time when the use of the death penalty is also decreasing nationally.  The Northeast region, which uses the death penalty the least, had the lowest murder rate of the 4 geographic regions, and saw a 6.4% further decrease in its murder rate in 2011, the largest decrease of any region.  By contrast, the South, which carries out more executions than any other region, had the highest murder rate. It saw a small decline from last year. The murder rate in the West remained about the same, while the rate in the Midwest increased slightly.  Four of the five states with the highest murder rates are death-penalty states, while four of the five states with the lowest murder rates are states without the death penalty. See table below.

    On the whole, the number of violent crimes in the U.S. dropped 3.8% from 2010 to 2011.

    (T. Frieden, "U.S. violent crime down for fifth straight year," CNN, October 29, 2012; "Crime in the United States, 2011", U.S. Dept. of Justice, October 29, 2012; DPIC analysis).  See Deterrence and Murder Rates. Listen to DPIC's podcast on Deterrence.

    REGION
    2011
    2010
    Northeast 3.9 4.2
    West 4.2 4.2
    Midwest 4.5 4.4
    South 5.5 5.6
    NATIONAL 4.7
    4.8

    Rates are number of murders per 100,000 persons.


              Clean Kali: All eyes now on govt        
    Teaser: 
    The water of East Kali is heavily polluted. It would hopefully change with the NGT taking notice of it.
    The polluted Kali river. (Image source: Neer Foundation)

    Rampura, situated in Bulandshahr district in western Uttar Pradesh, is one of the 1,200 villages on the banks of the 300-km long East Kali, a tributary of the Ganges. The river is named after goddess Kali who, according to the Hindu mythology, is fierce and fights evil by ingesting it.

    Till the 1980s, the river was a symbol of purity. Things have changed now with the river turning into a nullah brimming with industrial effluents. “We used to drink its waters when young. Today, it's so toxic that forget drinking, I dread touching it,” says Devendra Kumar Sharma, a resident of Panwadi, a village in Meerut district. The river’s toxic water now symbolises death and not life.

    Foul flows in streams

    As per a study by Neer Foundation, a Meerut-based non-profit working on environmental issues, as the river is polluted, the groundwater of the area which gets replenished by the river too has turned into a receptacle for toxic waste. Unsuspecting people, however, continued to draw water through the handpumps till recent studies rang an alarm bell.

    The study conducted in 2015-16 reveals that in Rampura, the groundwater recorded a total dissolved solids of 1760 mg/litre, way above the permissible standard of a maximum of 500 mg/litre for drinking purposes. Soil stratum was harmed as iron and lead contamination spread from river water to aquifers (underground reservoirs that hold groundwater) that are recharged by it.

    A study by Neer Foundation reveals that the pollution load in the river is unmanageable. (Image source: Neer Foundation)

    Lead is recognised as highly toxic, and damages the nervous system in humans while iron is therapeutic in low doses but lethal when present in excessive quantities.“This toxic water gets distributed and is used for drinking and irrigation purposes in rural areas. This has a severe health impact on us and our animals. The outfall of water from nullahs to the river must stop,” says Satish Kumar, a farmer from Jalalpur village in Meerut district.

    The water from handpumps has shown iron concentration measuring up to 0.35 parts per million, which is enough to cause water to turn reddish brown in colour. Lead concentration too was high at  0.5 parts per million in Rampura. According to Indian standard drinking water specification 1991, the highest desirable limit of lead in drinking water is 0.05 parts per million. “The possibility of geogenic contamination i.e., naturally occurring contaminants in the water, too cannot be ruled out. The Central Ground Water Authority is studying these aspects,” says Atulesh Yadav, regional officer, Uttar Pradesh State Pollution Control Board, Meerut.

    Rampura is one of the several villages of the eight districts of western Uttar Pradesh where people’s lives at one time depended on the river water for everything--from drinking to irrigation. The village that once boasted of lush green guava orchards has no original water left in its river. The prime villains in this regretful story are the ceaseless discharge of industrial wastewater and municipal sewage into the river.

    “The three main cities of Meerut, Hapur and Bulandshahr through which the East Kali passes have several sugar mills, allied alcohol manufacturing distilleries, paper industries, dairies, tanneries and textile mills that discharge their effluents into the river,” says Raman Kant, director of Neer Foundation. The effluents from the sugar and paper mills are highly toxic and these two industries are enlisted among the 17 most toxic waste releasing industries by the standards provided under the Environment Protection Rules, 1986.

    The pollution load in the river is unmanageable and it can barely assimilate the pollutants. Dilution with freshwater isn't a viable treatment option any longer. In most villages--right from Antawada in Muzaffarpur where the river originates, to Kannauj, its confluence with the Ganga--the water, laced with industrial toxins, is lifted from both the river and under the ground for irrigation. “Water flows from the underground caverns in the forest adjacent to our village forming a river that used to collect rainwater. Once a life-giving force, the river is dry at its origin and gets polluted by industrial effluents a few kilometers downstream,” says Bilam Singh, a farmer from Antawada. “The effect of this on our food is mostly unknown. It is possible that some of the most toxic chemicals like cancer-causing dioxins and organochlorines released by factories are present in the water that is irrigating the farms,” says Raman Kant.

    Water flows from the underground caverns in the forest at the origin of the river. (Image source: Neer Foundation)

    In 2001, Neer Foundation tested the water quality in government accredited laboratories which showed the presence of persistent organic pollutants or PoPs in the two samples near Saini village, downstream of Nanglamal sugar factory. PoPs are known for their impacts on human health and the environment as they are resistant to environmental degradation. “Farmers knew of the contamination but continued to irrigate from the river,” adds Raman Kant.

    “It is only on the river’s downstream stretch as it crosses the city of Aligarh that its pollution level declines as freshwater is added to it from the upper Ganga canal. Besides this, industrial wastes are not added in the river’s stretch between Aligarh and Kannauj,” says Raman Kant.

    The green court takes note

    Many civil society groups have raised the issue of river clean-up. Come monsoon and stretches of the effluent-laden river turn red as it passes through industrial sites. An otherwise seasonal river has now turned into a perennial one, thanks to the discharge of industrial and municipal wastewater into it. For years, this has been a concern as villagers were left with no option but to drink this contaminated water. The union environment ministry had in 2012 directed the Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB) to monitor the quality of the river water and the major wastewater outfalls. “The Uttar Pradesh State Pollution Control Board too does regular monitoring of the river waters,” says Yadav.

    Yet small pockets of industries are polluting the waters of the predominantly rural catchment that is largely dependent on the untreated water from the river as well as the ground. This is leading to the spread of cancer and various other life-threatening diseases. Seeing the impasse, Raman Kant put up a public interest litigation (PIL) which was heard by the principal bench headed by Justice Swatanter Kumar, chairperson, National Green Tribunal (NGT). Neer Foundation had two demands--the Environment Protection Rules, 1986 that prescribes the standards for effluent discharge is followed and municipal authorities who are responsible for managing municipal wastes adhere to the Municipal Solid Waste Rules, 2016.

    “The industries not only abstract large volumes of water during their manufacturing processes reducing dilution of pollutants present within the surface water bodies but also contaminate the river by draining their effluent wastes into it,” the PIL states.

    The NGT has, in an order dated May 24, 2017, asked the Uttar Pradesh State Pollution Control Board to test the groundwater along the course of the East Kali river. The order is applicable to districts of Meerut, Muzaffarnagar, Hapur, Bulandshahr, Kasganj, Aligarh, Kannauj and Farrukhabad through which the river passes. The NGT has directed the authorities to test the water immediately and seal those handpumps that supply contaminated water. The PIL also says the Kali clean-up is a prerequisite to cleaning the Ganga. The green tribunal’s order has come as a temporary respite for thousands of villagers living along the river. They are nonetheless waiting for the government to establish long-term policies to resolve the crisis. This could be in the form of a comprehensive action plan for cleaning the East Kali river.

    “The Supreme Court had in 2014 transferred a public interest litigation by noted environmental activist M.C. Mehta, pending since 1985, to the green tribunal. It deals with issues of the river Ganga, especially those involving discharge of domestic sewage and other sources of pollution in the Ganga. This is the larger case which is being heard on a daily basis by the tribunal. As a result, some of the prayers of the petitioner in the case of Kali river were not heard separately,” says advocate Adarsh Srivastava, one of the applicants on behalf of the petitioner.

    “We hope to get an official assessment of the water quality in the riverside villages as per the present order on the East Kali river soon. However, since we have been working on the river’s revival, we look forward to the tribunal’s orders on the Ganga pollution case. The court is likely to give directions on strict measures and penalties to prevent hazardous materials and pollutants from being dumped into the rivers,” says Abhishek Tyagi, secretary of Neer Foundation.

    Without this, it is hard to tell whether the issue of pollution will be resolved in the near future.

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              DOJ announces takedown of Dark Web market where Utah teens obtained fatal doses of synthetic drug        
    By Tal Kopan WASHINGTON — The Department of Justice and its international partners announced Thursday a takedown of a massive Dark Web marketplace that was allegedly one of the world’s biggest sources for the sale of drugs and illicit materials, striking a blow to the cybercriminal underground. In shutting down AlphaBay and arresting its alleged founder, Alexandre Cazes, the Justice Department also is going after the assets of Cazes, who is charged with running the sophisticated anonymous market and was […]
              Video Series Part 4: Battered Woman Syndrome - Intervention & Treatment Options and Criminal Justice Influences        

    In the fourth and final installment of our video series, Dr. Walker examines the intervention and treatment options available for victims of domestic violence, as well as how the research has influenced criminal and family law.

    The 4th Edition of her seminal work is now available from Springer Publishing. For a limited time, use promo code BWS20V at checkout and receive 20% off!

    Quick Links:

    Battered Woman Syndrome Video Series Part 1
    Battered Woman Syndrome Video Series Part 2
    Battered Woman Syndrome Video Series Part 3


              Anne Spencer Personal Library Catalogue        

    GARDENING & NATURE
    Blanchan, Neltje, Bird Neighbors - AS 5.7 2013
    Carson, Rachel, Silent Spring - AS 5.18 2013
    De La Mare, Garden Guide: The Amateur Gardener's Book - AS 5.27 2015****
    Findlay, Hugh, House Plants: Their Care and Culture - AS 5.17 2013
    Hudson, W.H., Birds in Town and Village - AS 5.3 2013
    Rutherfurd Ely, Helena, A Woman's Hardy Garden - AS 5.20 2014
    Stack, Frederic William, Wild Flowers Every Child Should Know - AS 5.16 2013

    FICTION & POETRY
    Follett, Helen, Magic Portholes - AS 5.12 2013
    Miller, Arthur, Death of a Salesman - AS 5.6 2013
    Parker, Dorothy, Enough Rope: Poems - AS 5.14 2013
    Seredy, Kate, The White Stag - AS 5.4 2013
    Whitman, Walt, Leaves of Grass - AS 5.1 2013 

    AUTOBIOGRAPHY, MEMOIR & BIOGRAPHY
    Emerson, Ralph Waldo, Representative Men: Seven Lectures - AS 5.19 2013
    Graves, Robert, Good-bye to All That - AS 5.10 2013
    Smith, Allen, Life in a Putty Factory - AS 5.22 2014

    LABOR & SOCIAL JUSTICE
    Sinclair, Upton, The Jungle - AS 5.8 2013

    LANGUAGE & EDUCATION
    Pei, Mario, The Story of Language - AS 5.9 2013

    AFRICAN & AFRICAN AMERICAN STUDIES
    Davidson, Basil, A Guide to African History - AS 5.23 2015
    Ottley, Roi, New World A-Coming: Inside Black America  - AS 5.26 2015 

    HISTORY
    de Tocqueville, Alexis, Democracy in America, Vol. 1 - AS 5.24 2015
    de Tocqueville, Alexis, Democracy in America, Vol. 2 - AS 5.25 2015
    Eaton, Jeanette, The Story of Light - AS 5.13 2013
    Irving, Washington, Knickerbocker's History of New York, Two Volumes - AS 5.11 2013
    Kelly, Clyde, United States Postal Policy - AS 5.5 2013

    SCIENCE
    Cleland, Hermand, Geology, Physical and Historical - AS 5.2 2013
    Stawell, Sir Robert, Star-Land - AS 5.15 2013
    Watson, James, Double Helix: A Personal Account of the Discovery of DNA - AS 5.21 2014


    Please contact the Library at personallibraries{at}gmail{dot}com to check out a book from the Robert Smithson Personal Library. ** latest book / accession number



              Anne Spencer Personal Library Wish List        
    This ongoing catalogue / wish list is compiled using the catalogue of Anne Spencer's personal books from the Albert and Shirley Small Special Collections Library at the University of Virginia. The PLL is looking for the exact editions stated.
     

    GARDENING & NATURE

    -De La Mare, A.T., ed.,  Garden Guide: the Amateur Gardeners’ Handbook (A.T. De La Mare Co., 1940)


    AFRICAN & AFRICAN AMERICAN STUDIES

    -(--), An Appeal to the Common Sense of Colored Citizens (Republican National Committee, 1940)
    -(--), Africa: Questions and Answers for Mission Circles and Bands (Women’s Foreign Missionary Society of the Presbyterian Church, 1897) 
    -(--), One year from the day that the Supreme Court of the United States outlawed segregation in public schools everyone interested in implementing that decision is invited to attend a Southwestern Regional Conference on Integration in Houston, Texas, May 17, 1955 (Southern -Regional Conference on Integration, 1955)
    -Atlanta Urban League, The Negro School Child in Atlanta (The Atlanta Urban League, 1945)
    -Davidson, Basil, A Guide to African History (Doubleday & Company, 1965)
    -Dobler, Lavinia and William A. Brown, Great Rulers of the African Past (Doubleday, 1965)
    -Lee, David, The Negro Problem: Editorial (1948)
    -McCulloch, James E., The Call of the New South: Addresses Delivered at the Southern Sociological Congress, Nashville, Tennessee, May 7 to 10, 1912 (Southern Sociological Congress, 1912)
    -Ottley, Roi, ‘New World A-Coming’: Inside Black America (Houghton Mifflin, 1943)
    -Streeter, Daniel W., Denatured Africa (Garden City, 1929)
    -Willkie, Wendell, Wendell Willkie Speaks to Negroes: Address at Rally of Colored Republicans, Chicago, Illinois, September 13, 1940 ( Republican National Committee, 1940)


    LABOR & SOCIAL JUSTICE

    -Hutchison, Keith, Labour in Politics (Labour Publishing Company, 1925)
    -Nathan, Maud, The Wage Earner and the Ballot (National American Woman Suffrage Association, 1908)
    -National Association for the Advancement of Colored People, Does Your Congressman Represent You?: A Voters Guide (1964)


    FICTION & POETRY

    -(--), Chronicle and romance : Froissart, Malory, Holinshed (P. F. Collier & Son, 1910)
    -(--), Heartsease: or, The Brother’s Wife (D. Appleton and Co., 1855)
    -Boyeson, Hjalmar H., Falconberg (Charles Scribner’s Sons, 1899)
    -Brinker Post, Mary, Annie Jordan: A Novel of Seattle (Doubleday & Co., 1948)
    -Butterworth, Hezekiah, Up from the Cape: a Plea for Pepublican Simplicity; Mayflower Tales (J.S. Ogilvie Publishing Company, 1883)
    -Chevalier, Maurice, With Love (Little, Brown & Co., 1960)
    -Dunsany, Lord, Five plays : the gods of the mountain, The golden doom, King Argimēnēs and the unknown warrior, The glittering gate, The lost silk hat (Little, Brown & Co., 1917)
    -Ellmann, Richard, ed., The Norton Anthology of Modern Poetry (W.W. Norton & Company, 1973)
    -Fallada, Hans, Little Man, What Now? (Simon & Schuster, 1933)
    -Fast, Howard, Citizen Tom Paine (Bantam Books, 1946)
    -Gras, Felix, (Catharine Janvier, trans.), The White Terror: A Romance of the French Revolution and After (D. Appleton and Co., 1900)
    -Harris, Cyril, Street of Knives (Little, Brown & Co., 1950)
    -Johnson, Johnson's Chief Lives of the Poets : being those of Milton, Dryden, Swift, Addison, Pope, Gray, and Macaulay's Life of Johnson (Foreword by Matthew Arnold) (Henry Holt & Co., 1880)
    -Kerlin, Robert T., Contemporary Poetry of the Negro (Press of the Hampton Normal & Agricultural Institute, 1921)
    -Kipling, Rudyard, Barrackroom Ballads (Donohue, Henneberry & Co., 1899)
    -Kipling, Rudyard, Departmental Ditties (M.A. Donohue & Co., 1901)
    -O’Brien, Edward J., ed., The Best Short Stories of 1924: and The Yearbook of the American Short Story(Small, Maynard & Co., 1925)
    -Patten, William, ed., Short Story Classics (American) ( P.F. Collier & Son, 1905)
    -Rothberg, Abraham, The Thousand Doors (Holt, Rinehart and Winston, 1965)
    -Scott, Sir Walter, The Lady of the Lake (Thomas Crowell & Sons, 1893-1900)
    -Shoup, Francis Elliott, ed., Pope's The Iliad of Homer : books I, VI, XXII, and XXIV (B. F. Johnson Publishing Company, 1901)
    -Smart, C., trans., The Works of Horace (David McKay, 1896)


    HISTORY

    -(--), Washington Merry-Go-Round (Liveright, 1931)
    -Addington Symonds, John, Renaissance in Italy (Modern Library, 1935)
    -Anthony, Katharine, Catherine the Great (Garden City, 1927)
    -Dabney, Richard Heath, The Causes of the French Revolution (Henry Holt and Co., 1889)
    -De Tocqueville, Alexis, Democracy in America (Colonial Press, 1899)
    -Gibson, Hugh, ed., The Ciano diaries, 1939-1943 : the complete, unabridged diaries of Count Galeazzo Ciano, Italian minister for foreign affairs, 1936-1943 (Doubleday and Co., 1946)
    -Langford Warren, Herbert, The Foundations of Classic Architecture (Macmillan Co., 1919)
    -Parman, Jr., Francis, The California and Oregon Trail: Being Sketches of Prairie and Rocky Mountain Life (Hurst and Co., 1900)
    -Turner, Edward Raymond, Europe, 1789-1920 (Doubleday, Page, 1920)
    -Vehanen, Kosti, Marian Anderson: A Portrait (McGraw Hill, 1941)


    LANGUAGE & EDUCATION

    -Orlanidi, Nazareno, Italian Grammar (Tip. Sociale, 1910)
    -Tuckerman, Julius, Simplicité : a Reader of French Pronunciation (American Book Co., 1908)


    SCIENCE & MATH

    -Chamberlin, Thomas, A College Text-Book of Geology (Henry Holt and Co., 1909)
    -Curry, Preston E., and Ralph Rice, Applied Business Arithmetic (South-Western Publishing Co., 1940)
    -Korzybski, Alfred, Manhood of Humanity: the Science and Art of Human Engineering (Dutton and Co., 1921)


              Beige scarves, brown scarves, beige silk scarf, brown silk scarf, neutral silk, silk chiffon, crinkle chiffon, beige, tan, coral, handmade by FireAuntStudios        

    42.00 USD

    Hand dyed warm neutrals in shades of brown, enlivened with a splash of coral, this scarf is a great gift for the lady who's not necessarily into spring pastels. Crinkled chiffon is perfect if you enjoy wearing silk but prefer a more casual look. This is a large scarf, generously sized at approximately 17" x 74". Silk chiffon is a looser weave, and is very gauzy and feminine. This is 100% silk chiffon, not that polyester impostor!

    I use only professional quality dyes which bond permanently with the fabric, meaning the beautiful colors won't run or fade. I make every effort to display colors accurately, however, colors can appear to vary based on your monitor. If you have any questions or concerns, please don't hesitate to contact me! To care for your new Fire Aunt Studios scarf, machine wash on cold, gentle cycle in a mesh bag, twist gently, and air dry to maintain the crinkles.

    Your new scarf will be shipped via Priority Mail in a flat rate padded envelope. If you live in the Treasure Valley, Idaho area, and would like to arrange for pick up or delivery, message me, and I'll provide you a coupon code for free shipping.

    I invite you to check my feedback - here's what happy customers have said:

    ~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~

    This scarf is gorgeous, the picture doesn't do this scarf justice. it's very soft and the colors are vibrant. it's a Christmas present for my girlfriend. I know she'll love it.

    Beautiful scarf!! Artistically dyed in rich and wonderful colors. Visiting Anne's shop is such a treat!! Opening the package is even more of a treat!!!

    Simply gorgeous! The colors are unbelievable! Looks just as rich and textured as it does online. I loved it so much I bought another one recently as a Christmas gift. Beautiful work! Thank you!

    ~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~

    Whether you purchase from me, or another Etsy seller, thank you for supporting independent artists!


              Silk scarves, pink silk scarf, lavender silk scarf, chiffon scarf, silk chiffon scarf, pastel silk scarf, pink, purple, blue, mom gifts by FireAuntStudios        

    42.00 USD

    I'm calling this the Jellybean Scarf! Hand dyed in all the sweet shades of spring, it's a perfect addition to your spring wardrobe. Crinkled chiffon is perfect if you enjoy wearing silk but prefer a more casual look. This is a large scarf, generously sized at approximately 17" x 74". Silk chiffon is a looser weave, and is very gauzy and feminine. This is 100% silk chiffon, not that polyester impostor!

    I use only professional quality dyes which bond permanently with the fabric, meaning the beautiful colors won't run or fade. I make every effort to display colors accurately, however, colors can appear to vary based on your monitor. If you have any questions or concerns, please don't hesitate to contact me! To care for your new Fire Aunt Studios scarf, machine wash on cold, gentle cycle in a mesh bag, twist gently, and air dry to maintain the crinkles.

    Your new scarf will be shipped via Priority Mail in a flat rate padded envelope. If you live in the Treasure Valley, Idaho area, and would like to arrange for pick up or delivery, message me, and I'll provide you a coupon code for free shipping.

    I invite you to check my feedback - here's what happy customers have said:

    ~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~

    This scarf is gorgeous, the picture doesn't do this scarf justice. it's very soft and the colors are vibrant. it's a Christmas present for my girlfriend. I know she'll love it.

    Beautiful scarf!! Artistically dyed in rich and wonderful colors. Visiting Anne's shop is such a treat!! Opening the package is even more of a treat!!!

    Simply gorgeous! The colors are unbelievable! Looks just as rich and textured as it does online. I loved it so much I bought another one recently as a Christmas gift. Beautiful work! Thank you!

    ~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~

    Whether you purchase from me, or another Etsy seller, thank you for supporting independent artists!


              Skinny scarves, pink scarf, pink crinkle scarf, silk scarf, silk, feminist scarf, womens rights, nevertheless she persisted, hand printed by FireAuntStudios        

    45.00 USD

    Stand up! Show your support for women's rights and inspire your sisters to not fall into complacency out of sheer exhaustion. Hand dyed pink silk chiffon has been hand lettered with "resist" marching down one end ... symbolic, don't you think?

    * Trendy skinny crinkle scarf, so wearable! (7" x 76")
    * This is is 100% silk chiffon, not that polyester impostor!
    * Best of all, a portion of the proceeds from each purchase will be donated to Planned Parenthood. I'll even specify donations in honor of a specific individual if you would like (may I suggest Mike Pence or Mitch McConnell?).

    IMPORTANT! The scarf you see in the photo is not the actual scarf you will receive. Upon receipt of your order, I will hand dye and letter your scarf just for you, using the same materials and techniques as pictured. Since everything is done by hand, slight variations and imperfections are to be expected, and are what make your item truly one of a kind .. just like you!

    I make every effort to represent colors accurately, however, colors may vary slightly depending on your monitor. If you have any questions, please feel free to message me. If you like the message, but pink isn't your color, please let me know, I'd be happy to discuss a custom order.

    I use only professional quality fiber reactive dyes, which bond permanently with the fabric, meaning the colors you see won't run or fade. To care for your new Fire Aunt Studios silk scarf, I recommend hand washing in cold water, and hang or dry flat.

    Since this is a new product line, I'm indicating a shipping timeline of two to three weeks, since each scarf is made by hand. It's very likely it won't always take me that long. Your new scarf will be shipped via Priority Mail in a flat rate padded envelope. If you live in the Treasure Valley, Idaho area, and would like to arrange for pick up or delivery, message me, and I'll provide you a coupon code for free shipping.

    I invite you to check my shop reviews - here’s what happy customers have said:

    ~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~

    This scarf is gorgeous, the picture doesn't do this scarf justice. it's very soft and the colors are vibrant. it's a Christmas present for my girlfriend. I know she'll love it.

    Beautiful scarf!! Artistically dyed in rich and wonderful colors. Visiting Anne's shop is such a treat!! Opening the package is even more of a treat!!!

    Simply gorgeous! The colors are unbelievable! Looks just as rich and textured as it does online. I loved it so much I bought another one recently as a Christmas gift. Beautiful work! Thank you!

    ~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~

    Please contact me with any questions you may have. Whether you purchase from me or another Etsy merchant, thank you for supporting independent artisans!


              Resist scarf, pink scarf, pink pussy scarf, pink chiffon scarf, women's rights, resist trump, equality, feminist gift, protest, gift for her by FireAuntStudios        

    42.00 USD

    Stand up! Show your support for women's rights and inspire your sisters to not fall into complacency out of sheer exhaustion. Hand dyed pink silk chiffon has been subtly hand lettered with "resist" marching down the right-hand side of the scarf ... symbolic, don't you think?

    * This is is 100% silk chiffon, not that polyester impostor!
    * Available in two sizes: medium (13"x56") and large (17"x74")
    * Best of all, a portion of the proceeds from each purchase will be donated to Planned Parenthood. I'll even specify donations in honor of a specific individual, if you would like.

    IMPORTANT! The scarf you see in the photo is not the actual scarf you will receive. Upon receipt of your order, I will hand dye and letter your scarf just for you, using the same materials and techniques as pictured. Since everything is done by hand, slight variations and imperfections are to be expected, and are what make your item truly one of a kind .. just like you!

    I make every effort to represent colors accurately, however, colors may vary slightly depending on your monitor. If you have any questions, please feel free to message me. If you like the message, but pink isn't your color, please let me know, I'd be happy to discuss a custom order.

    I use only professional quality fiber reactive dyes, which bond permanently with the fabric, meaning the colors you see won't run or fade. To care for your new Fire Aunt Studios silk scarf, I recommend hand washing in cold water, and hang or dry flat.

    Since this is a new product line, I'm indicating a shipping timeline of two to three weeks, since each scarf is made by hand. It's very likely it won't always take me that long. Your new scarf will be shipped via Priority Mail in a flat rate padded envelope. If you live in the Treasure Valley, Idaho area, and would like to arrange for pick up or delivery, message me, and I'll provide you a coupon code for free shipping.

    I invite you to check my shop reviews - here’s what happy customers have said:

    ~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~

    This scarf is gorgeous, the picture doesn't do this scarf justice. it's very soft and the colors are vibrant. it's a Christmas present for my girlfriend. I know she'll love it.

    Beautiful scarf!! Artistically dyed in rich and wonderful colors. Visiting Anne's shop is such a treat!! Opening the package is even more of a treat!!!

    Simply gorgeous! The colors are unbelievable! Looks just as rich and textured as it does online. I loved it so much I bought another one recently as a Christmas gift. Beautiful work! Thank you!

    ~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~

    Please contact me with any questions you may have. Whether you purchase from me or another Etsy merchant, thank you for supporting independent artisans!


              Pink scarves, purple scarves, pink silk scarf, purple silk scarf, purple pink chiffon, crinkle chiffon, spring scarf, spring flowers, mom by FireAuntStudios        

    42.00 USD

    The shades in this one of a kind scarf remind me of the brightest spring flowers. Hand dyed in fresh spring shades of hot pink, and bright purple, with a touch of golden yellow, it's the perfect addition to your spring wardrobe. Crinkled chiffon is perfect if you enjoy wearing silk but prefer a more casual look. This is a large scarf, generously sized at approximately 17" x 74". Silk chiffon is a looser weave, and is very gauzy and feminine. This is 100% silk chiffon, not that polyester impostor!

    I use only professional quality dyes which bond permanently with the fabric, meaning the beautiful colors won't run or fade. I make every effort to display colors accurately, however, colors can appear to vary based on your monitor. If you have any questions or concerns, please don't hesitate to contact me! To care for your new Fire Aunt Studios scarf, machine wash on cold, gentle cycle in a mesh bag, twist gently, and air dry to maintain the crinkles.

    Your new scarf will be shipped via Priority Mail in a flat rate padded envelope. If you live in the Treasure Valley, Idaho area, and would like to arrange for pick up or delivery, message me, and I'll provide you a coupon code for free shipping.

    I invite you to check my feedback - here's what happy customers have said:

    ~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~

    This scarf is gorgeous, the picture doesn't do this scarf justice. it's very soft and the colors are vibrant. it's a Christmas present for my girlfriend. I know she'll love it.

    Beautiful scarf!! Artistically dyed in rich and wonderful colors. Visiting Anne's shop is such a treat!! Opening the package is even more of a treat!!!

    Simply gorgeous! The colors are unbelievable! Looks just as rich and textured as it does online. I loved it so much I bought another one recently as a Christmas gift. Beautiful work! Thank you!

    ~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~

    Whether you purchase from me, or another Etsy seller, thank you for supporting independent artists!


              Green scarves, green silk scarf, green chiffon scarf, silk chiffon, crinkle chiffon, lime green, forest green, teal, greenery, spring scarf by FireAuntStudios        

    42.00 USD

    The main color in this hand dyed, one of a kind scarf was inspired by the Pantone Color of the Year for 2017, Greenery. It's been accented with a dark blue-green shade I'm calling evergreen. Such fresh shades for Spring! Crinkled chiffon is perfect if you enjoy wearing silk but prefer a more casual look. This is a large scarf, generously sized at approximately 17" x 74". Silk chiffon is a looser weave, and is very gauzy and feminine. This is 100% silk chiffon, not that polyester impostor!

    I use only professional quality dyes which bond permanently with the fabric, meaning the beautiful colors won't run or fade. I make every effort to display colors accurately, however, colors can appear to vary based on your monitor. If you have any questions or concerns, please don't hesitate to contact me! To care for your new Fire Aunt Studios scarf, machine wash on cold, gentle cycle in a mesh bag, twist gently, and air dry to maintain the crinkles.

    Your new scarf will be shipped via Priority Mail in a flat rate padded envelope. If you live in the Treasure Valley, Idaho area, and would like to arrange for pick up or delivery, message me, and I'll provide you a coupon code for free shipping.

    I invite you to check my feedback - here's what happy customers have said:

    ~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~

    This scarf is gorgeous, the picture doesn't do this scarf justice. it's very soft and the colors are vibrant. it's a Christmas present for my girlfriend. I know she'll love it.

    Beautiful scarf!! Artistically dyed in rich and wonderful colors. Visiting Anne's shop is such a treat!! Opening the package is even more of a treat!!!

    Simply gorgeous! The colors are unbelievable! Looks just as rich and textured as it does online. I loved it so much I bought another one recently as a Christmas gift. Beautiful work! Thank you!

    ~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*~

    Whether you purchase from me, or another Etsy seller, thank you for supporting independent artists!


              Sunday afternoon teas to do justice to Richard Jefferies        

    Richard Jefferies, the 19th century author I wrote my dissertation about, deserves to be better known.

    So it is good to read this on the Swindon Advertiser site:
    The work of Victorian nature writer Richard Jefferies is being brought to a new audience this summer. 
    A series of cream tea and culture Sundays is being staged at his birthplace near Coate Water and it is proving popular. 
    "The museum is dedicated to Richard Jefferies but a lot of people have never heard of him," said manager Mike Pringle. "Just wandering around looking at books in cases isn’t really doing justice to him. 
    "We thought on Sunday afternoons when we’re open why not up the game a bit and make it an event rather than just a visit?"
    You can read more about the plans on the museum's website.
              When Atlas Cried        
    I just finished reading Atlas Shrugged by Ayn Rand for possibly the tenth time. The book has never seemed more relevant in any time that it does today.

    As I chase down crime and violence in the streets, I connect the dots back to the root cause of this modern day plague. I look deeper than the dysfunctional family; I look to the dysfunctional administration that is currently driving the nation to a collision course with anarchy. Obazy Mouch, in his attempt to gain equality for the zombies by nationalizing everything that was once the backbone of this countries economy, has enslaved millions to his skewed ideology of what is best. He has taken away desire and replaced it with apathy, removed allegiance and replaced it with obedience, and perverted loyalty by requiring a test to prove it.

    No more can a young kid think that the way to get ahead is to work hard, start a business work harder and reap the benefits. That is an outdated way of thinking, the kid now must think of doing the minimum, and being held on an equal footing with everyone else. It is evil to try to get a head of others; it is evil to make money. Only the omniscient government is able to manage companies, and people.

    Obazy is enslaving the normals and the zombies with every speech he makes every law he signs, he pisses away the rights that were ours as if they meant no more to him that the fly buzzing around his head.

    I continue to seek out crime and injustice on the streets, even though I know the cause. And now I seek out something else in my nocturnal haunts, I have begun a new quest a quest for John Galt.

    I am the Mirrorman. I see what others fear.

              Rwanda’s Shared Roles        
    Live58: is a strong believer and supporter of micro financing and saving associations to aid consistent incomes in underdeveloped countries. HOPE International is one of the best organizations doing just that; investing in the dreams of families in the world’s underserved communities. Within each family that HOPE works with, is a story of justice and
              pétard        
    Corse: une ancienne militaire condamnée pour l'incendie de Pietralba  Âgée de 69 ans, cette ancienne militaire a expliqué avoir jeté un pétard sur sa chienne qui s'était réfugiée dans un buisson. L'incendie a détruit huit hectares de maquis. Elle a reconnu avoir connu "une grosse bêtise". (...) Une fois l'incendie déclaré, la retraitée avait alerté les secours avant de se rendre au commissariat d'Ajaccio pour se dénoncer. Elle s'est également excusée à plusieurs reprises auprès des secours. Dans son réquisitoire, le procureur de la République s'est montré très ferme, demandant deux mois de prison avec sursis, 18 mois de mise à l'épreuve, l'indemnisation des victimes ainsi que l'interdiction de se rendre sur les lieux.
    http://www.lexpress.fr/actualite/societe/justice/corse-une-ancienne-militaire-condamnee-pour-l-incendie-de-pietralba_1934182.html
    =============
    (période critique septennale des 70 ans - rythmes courts à voir)
              pyromane        
    Un homme de 30 ans a été interpellé vendredi matin. Il est soupçonné d’être à l’origine depuis le 24 juillet, principalement en soirée, d’une dizaines de départs de feu qui ont brûlé environ 3,5 hectares dans le secteur de Saint-Ambroix et Allègre-les-Fumades, dans le nord du département du Gard. «Il reconnaît avoir mis le feu, mais il n’explique pas pourquoi» Il a été mis en examen pour «incendies volontaires», une procédure délictuelle, et incarcéré à la maison d’arrêt de Nîmes, a indiqué le procureur de la République à Alès, Nicolas Hennebelle. «Il reconnaît avoir mis le feu, mais il n’explique pas pourquoi. Il dit qu’il n’était pas bien, qu’il avait un contentieux avec son employeur, mais ce ne sont pas des explications cohérentes», a déclaré le magistrat. Une expertise psychiatrique sera réalisée au cours de l’instruction, a-t-il ajouté, précisant que l’homme, qui exerçait la profession de livreur, n’est pas connu de la justice.
    http://www.leprogres.fr/faits-divers/2017/08/05/un-incendiaire-en-serie-presume-incarcere
    ==============
    (rythmes courts à voir)
              Comment on Krip-Hop Police Brutality Against People with Disabilities Slideshow by Krip-Hop Police Brutality Against People with Disabilities Slideshow — United Against Police Terror – San Diego – colouredjustice.wordpress.com        
    […] via Krip-Hop Police Brutality Against People with Disabilities Slideshow — United Against Police Terro… […]
              Comment on #JUSTICE4LAMONTEZJONES CLAIM FOR WRONGFUL DEATH by #O22 in San Diego | United Against Police Terror – San Diego        
    […] Lamontez Jones, 39 years old 10/20/2015 #JUSTICE4LAMONTEZJONES CLAIM FOR WRONGFUL DEATH […]
              Comment on Justice for Shane Anthony Hayes by Kristopher "Kritter" Hayes        
    The trial was a joke...I hope the members of the jury can live with themselves. No justice for Shane.
              Comment on Support Celebration of Sergio Weick’s life killed by San Diego Sheriffs on August 12th, 2016 on #GoFundMe by Yadira Menendez        
    No one deserves their life to be taken away in such a horrific way. My condolences to the entire family. No ones past should define their future. Despite what choices he maid in his life, he was still a human being, a father to two beautifully kids, a husband to a great women, a son to an amazing lady, and a loyal friend to many...may there be justice for the family. There lives will never be the same...
              Comment on #JUSTICE4LAMONTEZJONES CLAIM FOR WRONGFUL DEATH by Fundraiser, PRC Memorial 4 #SDTOLENLIVES & #O22 in San Diego | United Against Police Terror – San Diego        
    […] Lamontez Jones, 39 years old 10/20/2015 #JUSTICE4LAMONTEZJONES CLAIM FOR WRONGFUL DEATH […]
              Violating the Right to Education for Palestinians: A Case for Boycotting Israeli Academic Institutions        
    Anthropologists for the Boycott of Israeli Academic Institutions presents anthropologists of education Thea Abu El-Haj and Fida Adely. The authors discuss the extreme violations of Palestinian youths’ right to education and why the boycott is an important and necessary tool for educational justice. Voting is open at the AAA until May 31. To vote “yes” … Continue reading Violating the Right to Education for Palestinians: A Case for Boycotting Israeli Academic Institutions
              Program Manager, Asia/Africa - International Bridges to Justice - Geneva, QC        
    Draft and evaluate capacity-building materials. International Bridges to Justice (IBJ) is a non-governmental, apolitical and independent non-profit organization...
    From Indeed - Wed, 14 Jun 2017 14:15:49 GMT - View all Geneva, QC jobs
              Lydia Gemstones Strappy Dress ~[satus Inc]~        
    I think you really need to check out my friend Satus’s creations. I am also honored to be able to blog for him because this means more fun for me in picture taking and photoshop and more creative ideas in my mind as well. I have tried to do this cute sexy little dress justice... Read More

    View original post on Magick Thoughts ❤ Le meilleur de Second LifeRead the rest
              Rock You To Hell (and 24 of the other greatest metal songs of all time)        
    Growing up in high school, I was not a U2 guy, even when everyone else was ga-ga over The Joshua Tree.
    I distinctly remember sitting in the band room before school and arguing, vehemently, about why Helloween was a better band than U2. (No, I didn't get many dates in high school.)
    The thing is, I still believe that, and I'm a reasonably normal human being these days. I just believe that heavy metal is probably the greatest popular music ever created. 
    If you agree, you can keep reading. If you don't, you can keep reading, too, if you're looking to expand your horizons. If you think that's just about the funniest thing you've ever heard, you can keep reading, too, only keep your U2 comments to yourself. Here's 25 of the best heavy metal songs ever.
    Just like last time — and I'm not gonna link it since all you have to do is scroll down like a few feet to see my last entry — there are some rules:
    • I tried to include only one song per group. This was difficult, since honestly I could fill a list of 25 with Metallica, Iron Maiden and, yes, Helloween, but that's not the idea. The idea is to give some pretty great bands their due, and maybe get you to download one or two on iTunes. I had no trouble finding 25 signature songs.
    • This is a heavy metal list, so I stayed away from hair metal songs or groups I've previously mentioned in the last list. I plan on doing a thrash list, since that genre holds a special place in my heart, so RELAX SLAYER/ANTHRAX/ETC FANS I WILL GET TO YOU I PROMISE.
    • Almost all of these songs are 20 years old. That's sad to me. My last list, the thrash list, will have some new (NOT Nu) metal in it, but in terms of good heavy metal, power metal, whatever, it's just not made much any longer. There are some good bands out there, such as Hammerfall, but they're not producing classics.
    • This is MY list, so it's not like some Hall of Fame list of the Greatest Metal Songs Of All Time. It's a geeky, fun list and a chance for me to write about some bands I've loved, OK? These aren't in order either. 
    • Seriously, relax, Slayer fans. I know that's hard for you.
    Here we go:

    • "I'm Alive" — Helloween
    Metal bands sure have some stupid band names. Savatage? Leatherwolf? Megadeth? Really? But no name probably misrepresented itself more than Helloween. People snickered in a sort of scared way when I named them among my favorite bands in high school. HELL-o-ween? Can't you just hear SNL's church lady? SATAN? 
    Yet Helloween never did take itself too seriously. WAY less seriously than many other heavy metal bands, especially those that leaned to the speed metal side (Slayer, for instance, could not find a spoonful of irony in itself despite the fact that the guitarist wore a wristband with spikes long enough to barbecue a turkey).
    No, Helloween was funny. They wrote about Charlie Brown and a prince who couldn't get it up and "Dr. Stein," a scientist who let his funny creatures run into the night. They also wrote this inspiring number. It's the first song I heard from Helloween, an album I bought simply because it got good reviews and there was an advertisement in Hit Parader that made them sound like an Iron Maiden-type band. Their goofiness, just like Anthrax's, never took away from the fact that this band could shred and yet include more catchy melodies than Def Leppard. 
    There haven't been many more consistent metal bands in the last 25 years than Helloween. Their last three albums, starting from the mid-2000s, were all outstanding, and I can't even say that about Iron Maiden. 
    P.S. I'm making three exceptions to my thrash metal list. Iron Maiden, Metallica and Helloween all could be considered speed or thrash metal bands in one form or another, but in many ways they are also heavy metal bands. Besides, they are so great they deserve to be on two lists.

    • "Future World" — Pretty Maids
    Remember what I said about stupid band names? 
    Anyway, Pretty Maids was even stranger than its name. Their lead singer had two voices, a silky classic rock-kind of voice that was nothing special, and some sort of growl that sounded like Joey Tempest of Europe trying to act tough. He shifted from one to another depending on how aggressive the music was behind him. Somehow it worked, especially on this song, because his vocals matched it perfectly. You had a great piano riff, then a guitar, then piano again, and all together, this mess became a great song, one of my favorites of all time. Their whole album, "Future World," was really pretty good, and against all odds, they had a great song, "Savage Heart," on their next album.
    This is exactly the kind of band that would crack non-metal fans up, but you guys thought Erasure was a great group, so that makes us even.

    • "Electric Eye" — Judas Priest
    Yes, I know "You Got Another Thing Comin'" is a great song. I agree. Yet I love the tone this song sets for "Screaming For Vengeance," Priest's best album (even better than the fantastic "British Steel") and easily one of the best metal albums of all time. "Electric Eye" is fast and hard and driving and ominous, especially with that majestic opener (which the band, for some reason, called "The Hellion" but really is just an extension of this track). "Riding on the Wind" follows, which is a great running song and one of my favorites, too. God this band had some great songs. Why isn't Priest in the Hall of Fame again? Well, at least Depeche Mode isn't either. 

    • "Rising Force" — Yngwie Malmsteen
    I really wanted to put "You Don't Remember, I'll Never Forget" on here, and if you want to switch the two songs around, I'm cool with that. But this is the best track from what I consider to be Yngwie's best album. He had actual songs on this album and an actual singer, Joe Lynn Turner from Rainbow (who was not Rainbow's best singer but still was OK), rather than just an excuse to play scales like really, really fast over and over. To be honest, even "You Don't Remember" is that. I always had a soft spot for guitarists who could play really fast, and so Yngwie makes this list even if he's the Dave Kingman of metal.

    • "We Must Carry On" - Chastain
    Speaking of flashy guitarists, welcome to my favorite of the 80s. I don't know if I would put him there any longer, but as I said, in high school, I had a serious crush on guitarists who could rip it. I loved instrumental albums too, and so I listened to Tony MacAlpine and Joe Satriani as well as Yngwie. I discovered David T. Chastain by chance.
    I bought a ton of tapes in high school, and sometimes I would buy an album because it was in the metal section at Musicland and I liked the cover. That's seriously all it took. That's why I bought this Chastain tape, and I remember popping it in and being blown away.
    Chastain, as it turns out, had one of the most aggressive vocalists for a power metal band at the time. A lot of it was screaming, the kind Hetfield did in his "Ride the Lightning" days. It took me a year after wearing out this album, "The 7th of Never," to figure out the vocalist was, in fact, female. She was fantastic and probably responsible for my love for female metal vocalists even to this day (Doro Pesch was another reason).
    David T. had another band, CJSS, which was more of a hair metal band, though it was still far heavier than Poison or White Lion. I preferred Chastain because it was almost thrash but not quite and David T. played about as fast and almost as well as even the flashiest guitarists. He also put out a few mediocre instrumental records. I went back in Chastain's catalouge, as was my habit if I loved a record, and found that Chastain put out two other great records. If you want, head to iTunes. I'd also recommend the songs "There Will Be Justice," "Voice of the Cult," "One Day To Live," "Black Knight" and anything off the 7th of Never, including the title track. These songs, surprisingly, have aged well and could hold their own against many of the modern metal bands.
    Had you even heard of Chastain? I'm curious.

    • "Shot in the Dark" — Ozzy
    Was Ozzy a hair metal group or a heavy metal group? I'm not sure. But I didn't give Ozzy his due last time, and so I figure I need to mention him here. "Crazy Train" is too overplayed for me to recommend it any longer, despite its brilliance, and so I'm going with one of Ozzy's lesser-known but still great hits. This one is catchy, far catchier than most of the hair metal hits, and yet it's heavier, too.
    It's too bad Ozzy is seen as this goofy guy now, the way most people see Stevie Wonder, or at least those who don't know his earlier catalogue. In this case, it's Ozzy's fault, as the drugs have punched too many holes in his brain. Yet Ozzy, like Stevie, was a badass at his peak and a talented one at that.

    • "Rise or Fall" — Leatherwolf
    Leatherwolf sounded like a tough metal band. It's a WOLF. In LEATHER. RAWR! But they were a gimmick. They had three guitars. THREE! Wow! Triple the POWER.
    OK, seriously. It was a little weird, but it worked, especially since they could really play. Their sound wasn't as crunchy, and it was painfully obvious that at times they just got in each other's way, which was inevitable. But they could also sing, and this was one of those huge, vocal tunes that made them sound like a choir (Metal really has serious roots in classical and opera music), in the "Flight of Icarus" vein. Leatherwolf had a much better career than it deserved. Its follow-up album was solid, too, and in some ways heavier and more consistent than its self-titled debut. They still release songs today, but they're not worth buying, save for one, "Behind The Gun." Unfortunately I don't see them on iTunes, and Amazon sells their CDs for about, oh, $50 for an import. I did love my Leatherwolf, but it's not worth that.

    • "The Trooper" — Iron Maiden
    A half-dozen Iron Maiden songs could, and really should, make this list. "Hallowed By Thy Name." "Aces High." "Two Minutes To Midnight." "Moonchild." "Wasted Years." On and on and on, as Bruce himself has sang once or twice. "The Trooper" may not even be my favorite track on "Piece of Mind," and "Powerslave" is probably my favorite album by Iron Maiden. But this song is so iconic. And it's the first Iron Maiden song I heard that made me reconsider the band, which I had ignored for some time in high school (I always thought they were a little weird before I realized how amazing they are). Iron Maiden is my second favorite band of all time. If they don't make the Hall of Fame I'm gonna be pissed, and yet I get this feeling that they won't. I don't think enough people took them seriously enough, which is a shame. Iron Maiden probably was hurt by the heavy metal label more than most, if not THE most, since they had one of the best singers in history and really, really great players and longevity and influence. All the pieces are there. I guess people just can't look beyond Eddie.

    • "Bring Me To Life" — Evanescence
    Remember what I said about female metal vocalists? I know this song probably doesn't deserve to be on the list, and I'll probably take some crap for it, but this is not just a great song, it's a classic. Amy Lee has a powerful voice, one of the best I've heard, male or female, and this song is far heavier than many of the pop metal classics. I think it qualifies, despite the fact that it is a tad overwrought and dramatic.

    • "Rock You To Hell" — Grim Reaper
    Grim Reaper was a goofy metal band known for one minor (very minor) hit, "See You In Hell," before they released this album. The vocalist, Steve Grimmett, sang in a high pitch, as if he was in a hair band, only it had an edge to it, like a wolf's howl. And the guitarist, Nick Bowcott, was actually a great player. So they were good. And then this album hit the shelves. Wow. The album just DESTROYED my speakers. RCA probably wondered what the hell hit them. Great production turned this into one of the heaviest records that wasn't thrash in the 80s, and this song is probably the best of the bunch, although three or four others come close. It compares well with today's metal too. Give it a try.
    Grimmett later sang for Onslaught, a middling speed metal band that got lucky enough to hire him, and as a result, the one album with him as a frontman turned out to be a great one. You'll see a song from that record on my next list.

    • "Enter Sandman" — Metallica
    There are two Metallicas. There's pre-Black album and post-Black album. I seem to be one of the few who loves both. I prefer pre-Black, of course, like most hardcore metal fans, but the Black album is one of the better metal albums of all time, and this song is one of the best tunes. Great, crunchy, catchy riff from a band that still manages to be heavier than any other mainstream rock act in America.

    • "Hall of the Mountain King" — Savatage
    Savatage had two lead singers, and both were great, but I prefer the Jon Olivia era, though the song "Edge of Thorns" almost made the list. Why? Well, this album and its title track are classics, the perfecg balance of heavy crunch and melody. Savatage wasn't afraid of the fact that metal bands owe a lot to classical music, and the real "Hall of the Mountain King" plays on guitar as a perfect lead-in to this song, which contains one of the best metal riffs you'll ever hear. This album also had "24 Hours Ago" and "Strange Wings," and the later on band also recorded the classic "Gutter Ballet" and "When The Crowds Are Gone" and the interesting concept album "Streets" before Olivia left.
    Fun Fact: Savatage's song based on "Carol of the Bells," Christmas Eve/Sarajevo, on its concept album "Dead Winter Dead," is that song you hear all the time at Christmas by the Trans-Siberian Orchestra.

    • "March of the Saint" — Armored Saint
    Before John Bush became Anthrax's lead singer for a time, he led this band (and I believe he does again), and while Bush was overrated and underrated as a metal singer at the same time, his band did produce this whopper, a hard-driving, somewhat underground metal classic. I almost put Anthrax's "Only" here because I wanted a song sang by Bush, but this one wins out, and like others on this list, holds up well today.

    • "Pull Me Under" — Dream Theater
    Picking my favorite Dream Theater song is really hard. When Dream Theater releases a new album, I'll buy it, no questions asked, and I can say that about only a handful of groups. I love their technical yet melodic songs, even if some are 18 minutes or longer, and their last two albums were outstanding. I have so many other favorites — "In the Name of God," "Panic Attack," "Nightmare To Remember," "Lines in the Sand," plus the whole Metropolis concept album — that picking this one seems almost unfair. It's the band's only real hit, and it's also their least complicated number, something a lot of bands could have done, which you can't say about many other of their songs. But it's also their catchiest and was the reason I discovered Dream Theater, as I heard it on Headbanger's Ball one night.
    I would honestly want to hang out with Dream Theater one day, and it would be in the studio, not backstage, to see their sheet music and watch them play it. I guess Dream Theater brings out the band geek in me.

    • "Eyes of a Stranger" — Queensryche
    Yes, I like "Queen of the Ryche" as well as anyone, but Queensryche had only one truly great album, and it's so great it's one of the best ever, and so I wanted to honor "Operation: Mindcrime," and this is probably the group's best song anyway. Geoff Tate wails on this, and I doubt any other vocalist could have done this song justice, given the highs and lows a singer has to tackle for it to work as well as it does. I refuse to put "Silent Lucidity" on here since it's a great song but also a Pink Floyd ripoff and it's been way, way overplayed.

    • "Rainbow in the Dark" — Dio
    Speaking of epic vocalists...
    I could put 15 Dio songs on here, and a few from his work with Black Sabbath, and no one would blame me for it. Dio would have been a great thrash vocalist, a great hair metal singer and a great hard rock singer, but he did his best work on the kind of grandiose heavy metal songs like the one here. I'm picking this one because it's off his best album, "Holy Diver," and I think it's the best example of how Dio wasn't afraid to use melody almost on a pop music level (this song, after all, has keyboards as a main instrument, not just for flourishes). But he also turned those songs into metal classics because of his fantastic, soaring and sandpaper voice. Dio really needs to be in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. The metal world misses him.

    • "Chop Suey!" — System of a Down
    System of a Down is one of the few modern metal bands that would fit in fine with many of the bands listed here, and yet they don't sound like any other band I've ever heard. At times speed metal, melodic Nu metal and good 'ole hard rock, this song represents them more than any other, though it may not even be their best. All of their albums were excellent, and Serj, one of the better metal vocalists in recent times, had a nice solo career as well.

    • "Rusty Cage" — Soundgarden
    I don't hate the grunge era as much as most hardcore metal fans. There was some great music made, and much of it was harder and more ferocious than most of the hair metal era. Nirvana and Pearl Jam were two of my (obvious) favorites, but I can't put them in the metal category, not really even close. Alice in Chains comes closer, and so does Stone Temple Pilots, if for no other reason than Scott Weiland teamed up with Slash and the Guns guys to make a great Velvet Revolver record. But I can't do it. I like the bands, but I can't do it.
    Soundgarden, though, seems to fit, and this song, which seems born to inspire, not depress me, hangs just fine with the others in this group. Chris Cornell was a badass singer before he cheesed out. The grunge era was not good for metal, but it did produce some good music.

    • "Badlands" — Metal Church
    If there was one band that seemed to straddle the line between heavy metal and thrash better than any other, it was Metal Church. The band toured with speed and thrash metal bands, played it (very) occasionally and never recorded a sappy love ballad (in fact much of its subject matter was as thought-provoking or disturbing, depending on who you were, as other thrash bands). But Metal Church was at its core a heavy metal band, not a one-dimensional thrash band. As a result, it released some pretty brilliant albums. The band, like Savatage, didn't lose a step and may have gained a couple when it lost its original lead singer, David Wayne, who was good, for the great Mike Howe. I chose this song because it's catchy, hard and complex, much like the rest of its excellent work.

    • "Am I Evil?" — Diamond Head/Metallica
    Metallica's remake of this classic is probably why I started to truly love Metallica. I thought they wrote it until I read some interviews about their influences and they mentioned this band called Diamond Head. The original is just as good, though I don't think it's better.

    • "Painted Skies" — Crimson Glory
    If you can get past the terrible name (which shouldn't be too much of a problem given half the band names on this list) and the fact that the lead singer sounds like a much cheesier version of Geoff Tate, Crimson Glory put out a KILLER album called "Transcendence." The album had this song on it as well as "Lonely," and I honestly had a hard time deciding which one to put on here.

    • "War Pigs" — Black Sabbath gets on here by default. I probably should put Led Zep on here too but I don't consider them heavy metal per se, just a killer hard rock band, maybe the best band of all time. Black Sabbath, though, is probably the first true metal band and remains an influence for most bands today. Doom Metal, Black Metal, Speed Metal, Heavy Metal and, yes, even hair metal owe their left nuts to Black Sabbath. I think this is their best song but there are many others that could have made the list, both with Ozzy or Dio.

    • "Highway to Hell" — AC/DC
    AC/DC made the hair metal list, but I never really considered them a hair band, just the song I chose. So I'll put them on here, too, with their finest track, though about 20 others could have made it (including a close second, "Long Way To The Top," because they were ballsy enough to use bagpipes). Probably the only band to have lasted as long as they did without really changing one lick of who they were or their sound. This band, like Slayer, never really experimented, but it's proof of the "If it ain't broke, don't fix it" cliche. Quite frankly other bands should have followed that lead (ahem, Metallica).

    • "Sober" — Tool
    Tool's probably the only band that emerged out of the NuMetal/Grunge era that most metal fans respect and even like. Tool seems to attract a different audience. You probably wouldn't find many casual Tool fans at a Slayer concert. But you might find a Slayer fan at a Tool concert. I'm a big Tool fan, both for the musicianship — drummer Danny Carey is one of the best in history, and Maynard's vocals are top-notch — and for the long, complex songs with great lyrics. The album that carries this song is my favorite, though "Aenima" almost made this list for its funny yet fierce lyrics and gut-punching music. Plus no other band sounded like Tool, and that's truly amazing.

    • "In The Fallout" — Fifth Angel
    Fifth Angel probably had no real shot at big commercial success, given its power metal preference, but that's a big reason I liked this band. Ken Mary, the drummer for Chastain, was the drummer here, too, and Ted Pilot's vocals were as good as many bands. This song was my favorite. The lyrics helped feed my apocalyptic fetish as well.

    • "Death to All But Metal" — Steel Panther
    No explanation needed.










              Blog Post: Senate Panel Advances Trump Pick For DOJ Enviro Chief        
    The Department of Justice is one step closer to having Kirkland & Ellis LLP partner Jeffrey Bossert Clark as its top environmental enforcer Thursday after a party line vote in a Senate panel advanced his nomination.
              STOP TALKING ABOUT AIR PRESSURE        
    I admit that when Ballghazi initially broke, I was all about bringing those cheating bastards to justice.  I mean, it's TOTES OBVZ that they are lying to everyone and we all know it.  But I can't handle any more Belichick science lesson pressers or Brady playing dumb or ALL THE HOT TAEKS.  Congrats, lame stream media, on killing the shit out of this borderline story.  There was something there that perhaps may have brought down a dynasty (at least I hope) but this John Elway has beaten to death so much that I don't care.  GIVE IT A REST.  There is a Super Bowl to play on Sunday.  I'd rather talk about YAC (or RPY = Rings Per Year) than PSI.  And I speak for everyone with that opinion.

    I'll give my quick rundown of what it's like to work the NHL All Star Game Fan Fair at the end.  Unfortunately, there wasn't really much to go a full post on so we're going to address some properly inflated topics.

    *It ain't no Champions Lane - Ohio Buckeyes took 12 days to actually throw their dick-sniffing party for some reason but they did so on Saturday morning at their dump stadium.  I was surprised that only 45K were there and I think Poopson counts as two thousand.  Fake fans IMO.  Of course, our dipshit mayor had to go change the name of Lane Ave to Undisputed Way.  Idiot.  Champions Lane is still the superior street.

    *RIP Mr. Cub - Ernie Banks died on Friday and if you think that his corpse would avoid jokes here then you have no idea how this site works.  Poor guy nearly made it 84 years all while being a loser every day of his entire life.  I never understood why he always wanted to play two games other than he sure did enjoy losing.  If only he would have chosen the superior Chicago team he would have been able to hoist a trophy in 2005 while the manager called him in a "pendejo".  Yes, that will do.

    *The NHL Fantasy Draft is a solid watch - I highly doubt that any of you watched this on Friday night but it was enjoyable.  All the players are waiting to get drafted fantasy football style onto their All Star team while getting blasted on top shelf liquor.  More sports need to get their best players drunk on live TV while Ovi is campaigning to win a free Honda Accord (what they give to their Mr. Irrelevant).

    *LOL Dumb Teams - The 2011 NBA Draft was quite a significant amount of garbage.  Yeah, Kyrie was a legit #1 pick and is a star but the rest of the top ten is a real who's who of role players and feces.  I say this because Klay Thompson, the #11 pick that year, went off for 37 points in one quarter on Friday night.  Here are a few guys taken before him in 2011: Derrick Williams, Bismack Biyombo, Jan Vesely, and JIMMER!

    *G$ as Ambassador - Fun weekend in Columbus.  And just being a part of it all was cool.  Thursday, I helped out with a street hockey clinic which was kind of boring but whatever.  Friday and Saturday, I helped run the Precision Passing station which was enjoyable.  I got to do some serious work on my stick-handling, puck possession, and saucer passes.  Friday, Phil Kessel and his bruhs came by these game areas and were trying them out (not Kessel himself who was attached to this smoking hot Asian broad) but his boyz did.  I can't even begin to tell you how BRAH these guys were.  I tried to explain how these simple drills worked and all of them might as well have replied with a "CAN IT GO OFF-ROADIN' BRAH!"  Hilarious.  And Kessel's boys are terrible.  Sunday, I worked the Fantasy Draft location where people could get their pics taken where Friday's event was held.  Big -Rex stopped by to say hello.  Nick Foligno showed up randomly and took pictures on the stage after saying hello to me.  We are bros now.  The only thing that I regret is not getting a picture with the Cup.  The problem was that my shifts never lined up where I could achieve that.  If you closed the convention down, it was easy.  I never did.

    It was enjoyable and a good experience.  From everything that I've read online, the city has blown away NHL officials and fans and that is a good thing.  Columbus done good.  I would recommend doing something like this.  In FACT, I will probably look into the MLB All Star Game this July in Cincy.  Peace out, bruh.
              The Worst of The Divisional Round Vol.VIII        
    Ohio can not compete with this.
    Some time around midnight tonight, we will have our first ever College Football Playoff Champion or as the Big 12 would say, ONE TRUE CHAMPION.  Hey, that's great.  But go ahead and read this real quick.  Ohio starts second semester today and generally you would say that skipping the first class or two is not the best idea ever.  Ohio has around 60K students.  Let's say 10% of them are in Dallas right now.  Unless they worked out some sort of deal with a professor that they don't know, 6,000 kids could be dumped from their course schedule before they get back to Brohio.  I would imagine that many faculty members would be cool with this but no way all of these academic types will be.  There will be issues.  It's an interesting dilemma indeed.  One that I think is pretty important and a big reason why an 8 game playoff probably should never happen.  You can LOL and scoff at the notion of prioritizing academics and student athletes all you want but it will always be the driving force of what makes college "college".  It's a tough sitch no guff and I'm not sure what I'll do when the RedHawks are playing for a title next year and I have to tell my boss to fuck off.  Will happen!  Final prediction for tonight coming at the end.

    Let's turn the conversation over to the superior brand of football.  The kind that correctly doesn't glamorize marching bands or "Band of Dorks" as Jim Rome calls them.

    Cris Collinsworth and Al Michaels - Roger Goodell was in New England sitting among the people like the people person he is.  I assumed that the B on his Cowboys-colored hat stood for BLOWS.  The NBC team just couldn't stop talking about how much integrity he has and America collectively puked.  Oh sure, his buddy's report "proved" that he didn't lie, just that he's incompetent.  Good for him!

    Big Joe ELITE - There are very few things in the world that I love more than hopping on the Playoffs Flacco bandwagon and being obnoxious about it.  And for three quarters or so, I was the jolliest asshole this side of the nuthouse.  But he had two bad interceptions (which were definitely the receivers fault probably) and, like a leader, accepted the blame himself.  Still, the guy has 8 straight playoff games of at least two touchdown passes which is an NFL record.  Maybe one day he can play some of these games at home.

    Danny Amendola - This guy is terrible.  I know that he scored twice but he sucks so much.  Also horrible: Brandon Bolden.  What does he do?  You might as well punt if you give him touches.  The Pats had 14 rushing yards...it might be time to stop being a smug dick and play Jonas Gray who is their best RB and always has been.
      
    John HarBRAH - Oh, Johnny, you are certainly one of the best coaches on the planet but you got outsmarted by Josh fucking McDaniels and bitched and bitched and bitched some more about it.  I understand why as your opponent is widely known for their blatant cheating but they got you good, you fucker.  It was nice to actually see a flag thrown when some raving derelict comes storming out onto the field though.  Should be more consistent with that IMO.  Great game though...until next year Team ELITE.  Try to stay out of the news this offseason.

    Dick LeBeau - QUITTER!  You could tell that he always had one foot out the door.  He was never committed to that football team IMO!

    Marshawn Lynch - He didn't have a very good game and the Hawks, for some reason, give the ball way too much to NFC Brandon Bolden AKA Robert Turbin, but he made up for it with his "I'm thankful" replies to the media after the game.  Lynch is the best.  Media shitheads complaining about him make me love him more.

    Cam Newton - You know, I thought that Carolina played about as well as they could.  Even a perfect game from them probably was not going to be enough.  But Cam had that game-clinching pick and that was that.

    Richard Sherman - I just don't get this.  He should have lined up across from Kelvin Benjamin for the entire game and the Panthers would have done nothing.  But he stays on his side and Cam kept throwing at the back-up corner.  This feels stupid to me and Sherman is a good enough player to be able to dominate anywhere on the field.  Revis does.

    Kam Chancellor - He is only here because somehow he missed both field goal blocks on his amazing first half line leaps.  I have no idea how he missed either one of those.  But then he had a pick six and nearly killed Bowling Ball Mike Tolbert on a tackle so whatever.  The important thing here is that the boring ass Panthers are out.

    Not the Bills - We got a good laugh at their expense last week for how Doug Marrone completely owned their ass but they ended up with a giant upgrade as Rex Ryan is bringing his foot fetish upstate.  Great hire...there isn't a better coach for an incredible defense and a horrendous QB situation than Rex.

    POETIC FUCKING JUSTICE!!! - Yes!  THAT was perfect.  You want to steal that win against the Lions?  Then how about losing the next week in the signature Lions way!  I loved that so much.  Does the rule suck?  Of course it does but it hasn't been changed since it was initially bullshit so you DEAL WITH IT.  That was not a catch.  Period.  But as really stupid people argued last week, Dallas didn't lose because of that one play DURR!

    I mean, seriously, how fitting was that!!! - Dez is ELITE but he deserved that shit for getting off last week.  I love it when sports right OBVZ wrongs.  As someone who has hated the Dallas Cowboys since birth, yesterday was an ELITE day.  Some of you hate the Packers and I get why, but the Cowboys are pure fucking evil.

    Aaron Rodgers Calf - Bruh, that thing better heal up quick because if he can't move around better next weekend then the Seahawks are going to murder #12.

    NEW YORK BOZO - This GB line call was probably in reference to Chris Christie even though the state was wrong and he didn't call him a whale, but I like to think he was poking fun at the Knicks.

    Trent Richardson - INACTIVE!  The Browns traded him for Johnny Manziel and STILL won that trade.  Amazing.

    Demaryius Thomas - Dropped everything!  He was so much better when he had a great QB like Timmy Tenor throwing to him.

    John Fox - I'm 99% sure that the championship that the Broncos title window is closed, but if it isn't then they need to fire this guy and get a real coach.  Fox sucks.

    Mike Carey - WRONG AGAIN!  This guy is so bad.  Mike Pereira adds something to the broadcasts probably because he is always loaded on Tito's Vodka.  Carey is the absolute worst.  It isn't even funny anymore that he is always wrong.

    Peyton Manning - And then there was King Choke.  Bros, it's over.  His arm is shot.  He can't throw at all.  I would not be surprised if he retired.  That was embarrassing.  That Colts defense is BAD and they looked like the 2002 Ravens out there.  And the Manning era ended like it should have...with another pathetic home loss to an inferior team.  I look forward to everyone coming around and saying that I was right.  Peyton is the most OVERRATED QB in NFL history.  BOW DOWN.

    SEA/GB and IND/NE...I find it hard to see an upset there.  I think that both home teams win and the only thing that matters is the spread.  Either way, DALLAS AND PEYTON ARE GONE!

    We'll close with my prediction for tonight's title game.  I think the fine line between winning and losing is quite simple: whoever runs the ball better, wins.  I would say that the first team to 200 yards on the ground is going to be the champ.  I've been pretty steadfast all along that Ohio Buckeyes are going to win.  I mean, I could see this being a Coronation of a King sitch where Mariota ends his college years on top, but I just don't see Mark Helfrich out-maneuvering Meyer.  Plus, I heard that Oregon's coaches don't yell at their players and believe in "horizontal leadership".  In other words, pussies.  Ohio Buckeyes 38 Oregon 32. And I will be a very sad panda tomorrow.  Still though...QUACK QUACK NOGG!
              U.S. Department of Justice Indicts Russian National and Bitcoin Exchange        

              Abu Hamza (a repost)        
    Abu Hamza just got a life sentence. In honor of this I decided to repost my own poem from 7 years ago. Turned out to be kind of prophetic.

    I am Abu Hamza, a Muslim cleric
    I used to preach in Finsbury Park mosque,
    My sermons were a little bit barbaric
    But I delivered them with mighty force.

    I'm all for the equality of sexes
    And polyandry I don't mind a bit.
    I married one of my bigamic exes
    So I could get a residence permit.

    When I was young I used to be a bouncer,
    But they decided that I was too dumb,
    And it's more fun to be a doom announcer
    So I became a radical imam.

    Osama is my most-admired hero,
    I tried to give a hand to Taleban,
    I lost both hands and eye, but kept my beard,
    And all the body parts that make a man.

    In Britain I became a famous preacher,
    My name is always mentioned in the news,
    In my sermons the most important feature
    Is killing of the kuffar and the Jews.

    A Jew-free world would be a great improvement,
    Behind all evil there is some Jew.
    They also guide the planetary movement
    And nowadays my bowel movements, too.

    Please kill the unbelievers when you see them,
    With bombs, or guns, or poison or a word,
    For any reason or without a reason,
    The unbelievers should be put to sword.

    But then came the police, and then they told me
    That murder is a thing I shouldn't preach.
    How dare those kuffar to try to scold me?
    I want respect for my freedom of speech.

    The court convicted me of the incitement
    As poor man, I never stood a chance,
    I could not fight this horrible indictment
    Though state gave million pounds for my defense.

    And now the state has noticed I'm not poor
    And is demanding back the million quid,
    They froze my jail allowance to be sure,
    And found some of the money that I hid.

    My life is full of misery and anguish,
    I'm serving seven years in Belmarsh,
    In British prison I don't want to languish,
    The kuffar justice is unduly harsh.

    Americans want Brits to extradite me,
    They'll put me in the Supermax for life.
    One thought that really does not delight me:
    I might become the Unabomber's wife.

    I used to think that I was very clever
    And lead my students to the life of crime,
    But now I'll have to stay with them forever
    And hear their bullshit all the time.

    Americans! I really hope you will
    Show mercy to a person whom you hate:
    It sure is unusual and cruel
    To put one in a cell with Richard Reid.

    But in the meanwhile in the British prison
    I realized that my nurse is a poof.
    They surely had some ungodly reason
    To let a guy like that under this roof.

    He probably gets totally excited
    Each time he wipes my handsome manly ass,
    And as a Muslim I should be entitled
    To have him fired or at least harassed.

    Gay people are a vile abomination
    But even though I spit and scream and curse
    In this atrocious godless kuffar nation
    They won't assign to me another nurse.

    At least I can refuse the nursing service
    And try to wipe my anus on my own.
    Oh shit, my hooks are stuck, I'm getting nervous!
    Oh God! Wrong move! Right hook stuck in the bone!

    It is too late, but better late then never -
    Oh dear Lord, my ass is ripped to shred -
    Allah, please do me an enormous favor:
    Insert some common sense into my head.


              Dear Lord,         
    If you have any sense of justice at all, please make a 10-meter saguaro cactus grow out of Putin's chair, and right up his ass, right as he speaks to the Russian parliament. This will be a most impressive display of your might, much better than burning bushes. Besides, a burning bush is not very well visible through the pants.


              Seeing without a State -- Why James Scott matters to foreign aid        


    International development is social engineering, yes, but with a social justice lens. Its success hangs on its ability to translate intention into action, the offer of foreign assistance into local appropriation, application and transformation. Redundancy should be its metric of success, yet international development has become a steady career track for young westerners, many plied with advanced degrees in its theories and operational models. None of this--the academic programs, the career tracks--existed twenty years ago.  The simple vocational appeal of 'working oneself out of a job' is long gone.

    In the increasing professionalization and careerism of foreign aid (development & disaster relief), what is sacrificed are the years of fieldwork needed to cultivate a hands-on appreciation of destitution itself, the human suffering and loss of potential that ensues, and their causal origins in failed public institutions and cynical leadership. Academic degrees now matter more in development than field experience; the truism that local immersion is the best—many would say only—teacher is no longer followed. In my travels and teachings, I notice among students and young development professionals an unspoken disregard for living at the village level or heart of an urban slum for any period of time. There one is bereft of social media, most modern technology and infrastructure. Life must be experienced purely on local terms. Discomfort with vulnerability and perceived risk may be part of this rejection, but personal security is almost always a question of local networks.

    Read the rest of this short analysis over at Medium...







              Security Sector as Cause and Solution to DR Congo's Sexual Violence Crisis        
    Like any deep malaise, Congo’s rape crisis is but one expression of entrenched, systemic problems. Local witnesses, security analysts and medical professionals who treat survivors present overwhelming evidence that the primary perpetrators are uniformed Congolese security actors. A weak justice system may be responsible for the failure to discipline or punish perpetrators, but the sources of this behavior lie within the security sector itself. Accessing the security elite, Congo’s infamous ‘black box’, is notoriously difficult. As a result, very little analysis exists of the problem from the perpetrators’ perspective: analysis and evidence that deciphers the institutional culture and internal organization of the security sector, or that maps relations between senior officers, politicians and economic actors. By design, opacity reigns supreme.

    More on how sexual violence is being abated through Security Sector Reform at Sustainable Security

              Dr. Gerard NeCastro Named Dean of the College of Liberal Arts        

    WEST LIBERTY, W.Va., Aug. 10, 2017 — West Liberty University has named Dr. Gerard NeCastro its new Dean of the College of Liberal Arts. NeCastro joined the campus on July 1, 2017 and now supervises the departments of Humanities, Social Work and Behavioral Sciences and Criminal Justice, which offers undergraduate programs and WLU’s new graduate … Read More

    The post Dr. Gerard NeCastro Named Dean of the College of Liberal Arts appeared first on News & Media Relations.

    The post Dr. Gerard NeCastro Named Dean of the College of Liberal Arts appeared first on Academics.


              Criminal Justice Alumna Featured in Wheeling Newspaper        

    Female Officers Sought for Ohio County Sheriff, Police Departments by Casey Junkins, business/energy writer WHEELING — Ohio County sheriff’s deputy Brenda Lesnett does not pretend her job would be easy under any scenario, but serving as one of the precious few policewomen working for either the city of Wheeling or the county can present even … Read More

    The post Criminal Justice Alumna Featured in Wheeling Newspaper appeared first on News & Media Relations.

    The post Criminal Justice Alumna Featured in Wheeling Newspaper appeared first on Academics.


              Î Î±Î³ÎºÏŒÏƒÎ¼Î¹Î± μέρα δράσης για την κλιματική αλλαγή η 29 Νοέμβρη        
    Σύμφωνα με δελτίο τύπου της οργάνωσης "Οι Φίλοι της Φύσης": την Κυριακή 29 Νοεμβρίου, 11:30, στάση ΜΕΤΡΟ «ΑΚΡΟΠΟΛΙΣ» | διαδηλώνουμε για την κλιματική αλλαγή με τους ΦΙΛΟΥΣ της ΦΥΣΗΣ
    «Οι άνθρωποι & ο πλανήτης πάνω από τα κέρδη» - ΟΧΙ στα ορυκτά καύσιμα – ΟΧΙ στο νέο εργοστάσιο της ΔΕΗ από λιγνίτη - ΟΧΙ στην απογύμνωση  των δασών
    Οι ΦΙΛΟΙ της ΦΥΣΗΣ/Naturefriends Greece συμμετέχουν στην κινητοποίηση την Παγκόσμια Ημέρα Δράσης με τα εξής διαχρονικά αιτήματα, που τα περισσότερα από αυτά είχαν διεκδικηθεί από το Κοινωνικό Φόρουμ στη συνδιάσκεψη του ΟΗΕ στην Κοπεγχάγη (Δεκ.2009) καθώς και με άλλα συνθήματα από τους αγώνες που έχουν αναπτυχθεί ενάντια στις ληστρικές εμπορικές συμφωνίες TTIP CETA TiSA TPP, για την ελευθερία των σπόρων και ενάντια στους Γενετικά Τροποποιημένους Οργανισμούς, την Ειρήνη, ενάντια στα πυρηνικά, την προστασία των δασών  και των εδαφών κ.λπ :
    1.       Another world: is possible, is coming, is reality,
    2.       Climate Justice, Κλιματική Δικαιοσύνη,
    3.       People, Planet, Peace and Seed Over profit,
    4.       Seed Freedom, Food Freedom, Earth Democracy,
    5.       Αλλάζουμε το σύστημα ΟΧΙ το κλίμα | System Change NOT Climate Change
    6.       Απεξάρτηση από τα ορυκτά καύσιμα | ΟΧΙ στο νέο εργοστάσιο λιγνίτη  της ΔΕΗ
    7.       Οι άνθρωποι, O πλανήτης, H ειρήνη & Οι σπόροι πάνω από τα κέρδη
    8.       Ελευθερία των Σπόρων, Ελευθερία της Τροφής, Δημοκρατία της Γης
    9.       STOP TTIP CETA TiSA
    10.     ΟΧΙ στην απογύμνωση  των δασών - Τα δάση προστατεύουν το κλίμα
     ÎŸÎ¹ ΦτΦ/NFGR θεωρούν ότι ο αγώνας για την προστασία του κλίματος και την προβολή ενός νέου φαντασιακού μοντέλου για την ανάπτυξη πρέπει να δοθεί ταυτόχρονα και σε συνδυασμό σε πέντε επίπεδα: Διεθνές, Ευρωπαϊκό, Εθνικό, Περιφερειακό, Τοπικό και Ατομικό επίπεδο.

     ÎšÎ±Î»Î¿ÏÎ¼Îµ τους πολίτες που τους εκφράζουν οι παραπάνω θέσεις να συναντηθούν στο σταθμό του ΜΕΤΡΟ "ΑΚΡΟΠΟΛΙΣ" και να διαδηλώσουν με τους ΦΙΛΟΥΣ της ΦΥΣΗΣ, με πικέτες, πανό, μουσική κ.λπ.

              Obama’s review of the RSA        
    President Obama delivered a speech at the Department of Justice to announce the outcomes of a broad-ranging and unprecedented review of U.S. intelligence programs. [Also read 1) The Fight Against Big, Bad Data 2) Big Data and the Future of Privacy] The review examined how, in light of new and changing technologies, we can use […]
              Un Fauve, très bel hommage rendu à Patrick Dewaere (Editions du Rocher)        
    Un Fauve

    Un fauve, de Enguerrand Guépy, un très bel hommage rendu à un très grand acteur. Justice lui est rendue.

    Rendez-vous ici : Un Fauve, très bel hommage rendu à Patrick Dewaere (Editions du Rocher)


              Hyperbole Ahoy! Rickey Reviews "Inception"        
    "Inception" is at once the best movie you'll see all summer, yet the most flawed as well. The movie boasts a wildly imaginative concept that's executed to near perfection from a storytelling point of view. However, the visual tableau in which the plot moves forward falls flat in a few places. The movie's ideas are intensely cerebral, but it lacks much of the necessary presentation to compliment it. At the very least however, this is a thought provoking and fast moving flick that is definitely guaranteed to kick your brain into overdrive for two and half hours. If "The Sorcerer's Apprentice" can claim the same, we'd be more than a little shocked.

    The basic overarching plot is deceptively simple: it's a heist movie. Leonardo DiCaprio and a gang of thieves dive into the mind of a powerful industrialist in order to dissolve his energy company and thereby better the welfare of his competitors and humanity as a whole (hey, why can't we do this with BP?) But the way Leo accomplishes it and the manner in which it is explained and performed cinematically is what catapults this movie on to another level entirely. The movie unfolds on a level that we, as moviegoers, haven't had the pleasure of experiencing until now.

    In order to pull off the heist, DiCaprio's character Cobb recruits various specialists and then plunges head first into the dream. The underlying science behind is left intentionally unexplained, which is OK with us--this is more of a fantasy movie than a sci-fi one. Cobb's plan is to plant the suggestion to dissolve his empire in the billionaire's head by plummeting into three consecutively deeper planes of his dream state and using the target's deep rooted father issues as leverage. Things go wrong when the team arrives in the dream to discover that the target has prepared for this mental invasion by "militarizing his subconscious" (best. line. ever.) and then the rest of the flick becomes a frantic scramble spanning around multiple layers of consciousness, some scenes constrained by gravity, some not. "We have to go deep" is a common refrain throughout the film, as Cobb's tenuous grip on reality grows shakier the deeper he travels.

    Three nested levels of dreaming, unfold simultaneously at different paces, with characters running around about on each level. Each level's time progresses at a different speed. Absolutely nothing like this has been put on film before. Watching it all intricately unfold, crumble, and finally synchronize up again, we can't help but assume that Nolan played his fair share of three-dimensional chess in his younger days. The heist is absolutely brilliant, it occupies two thirds of the film, and the idea alone is well worth the $10 ticket price for this movie. Words simply can't do justice to the complexity that unfolds before your eyes. The movie is a testament to what cinema can convey.

    The big problem is the visual execution. The gritty urban realism that director Chris Nolan perfected in his Batman movies doesn't serve him as well in a surreal movie about dreams. More than anything else, this is a movie about big crazy ideas, and either you're willing to forego normal cinematic conventions in order to get your brain tickled for two and a half hours or you're not. Rickey was cool with it, but some of you might not be. Don't get Rickey wrong, this is a terrific movie--easily the best of the summer, but it could've been even better if it took a bit more of an artistic leap.

    At one point, Rickey said to himself, "hey, this is a dream, so why don't they just grow wings and fly around?" Sure, it sounds silly at first, but think about it. We're in the dream world here, so why not venture into the realm of the fantastic? When we dream, can't most of us do a little better than dreary Chicago in the rain? Isn't there more most of us could dream up than characters chasing each other around a dimly lit hotel? To it's credit, the movie pays scattered homage to other great dreamers such as Escher and Kubrick in many shots but when it comes to the third level of the mark's subconscious, a wintry snow scene, Nolan completely dodges the obvious shout out: Hitchcock and Salvador Dali's collaboration on the ski run scene in "Spellbound." Instead, we are bombarded with a James Bond style shoot out featuring fireballs and snowmobiles. Not quite as profound...

    The obvious explanation for this restrained (and arguably unimaginative) take on dreams is that asking the audience to delve even deeper into the realm of the imaginary when they're already tracking three concurrent dreamlines is pretty demanding. Warner Brothers didn't spend $200 million to completely alienate their viewership and create more of an art house flick than a summer tent pole movie. We get that. Still, Rickey was ready to make the leap with them on this one and was left wanting when the visuals didn't match the trippy ideas the film traffics in.

    But these are minor issues given the overall wonderment and awe this movie provides. And then there's the film's ending, which will probably go down in history as one of the most polarizing to date. "Inception" is very much a movie that asks you to make a decision about what you've just seen. Rickey's leaving this review purposfully light on spoilers, but for people who saw it, we'd love to discuss what you thought of the film's final shot in the comments section.

              And Now for Your Weekly Half-Assed Political Analysis...        
    Apparently over the weekend, President Obama nominated someone for supreme Court Justice who looks an awful lot like Nathan Lane. (Because we don’t know a whole lot about Elena Kagan’s beliefs or agenda yet, we’re resorting to playing the “_____ looks like _____!” game). Kagan’s Nathan Lane similarity excites Rickey if for no other reason than the increased possibility of next week’s Senate hearings inexplicably erupting into Broadway show tunes.

    “And Senators, if I may address the issue of gay rights by saying...”

    I feel pretty,
    Oh, so pretty,
    I feel pretty and witty and bright!
    And I pity...
    Any girl who isn't me tonight!

    Fa la la laaaa la la la laaa!


    Good times. But there’s still someone else whom Elana Kagan bears an even uncannier resemblance to. It took us a while to figure out, but then with the help of a delightfully irreverent law blog, Rickey finally placed it…. The nameless albino from “The Princess Bride!”

    NO ONE WITHSTANDS THE MACHINE!


              Comment on Advertise With Us by Gabriel Natty        
                                D-G FILMS ENTERTAINMENT SERVICES                                         157, Old Lagos/Asaba Road                                   Agbor                                   Delta State-Nigeria                                                                                 This is to inform the general public that there will be a 3 Day Extensive location training for persons wishing to be Actors, Movie Scriptwriters and make up artist / Costumier in the movie industry.   DATE: Friday 5th August –Sunday 7th  August 2011.     LOCATION: Asaba.     ENTRY FEE: Free   Every participant will feature in our movie Titled “Jungle Justice”. So grab this opportunity of becoming the next movie Star.   For more information contact us. Tel: 08035645337 Email: gabrielnattyfilms@gmail.com  
              Attorney General Jeff Sessions Wants to Target Affirmative Action. How Will That Affect UNC?        
    The university is facing a lawsuit by a white student who didn’t get in Last week, The New York Times reported that the Department of Justice is preparing to investigate universities over their affirmative action policies. The news ricocheted across the Internet, in part because it seemed like a singular representation of President Trump's messaging around race: playing into fears that minorities are taking away a limited resource—in this case, college admissions—from whites.…
              New report reveals impact of drastic budget cuts on UK prisons        

    A new report by the Prison Reform Trust, supported by the Bromley Trust, shows the system under significant strain with fewer staff, worsening safety and fewer opportunities for rehabilitation.

    A new report by the Prison Reform Trust, supported by the Bromley Trust, shows a prison system under significant strain with fewer staff, worsening safety, and fewer opportunities for rehabilitation.

    Unprecedented cuts to the Ministry of Justice budget, due to total £2.4 billion by 2015-16, are creating a race to the bottom in prison conditions and the warehousing of people in super-sized jails, according to the Prison Reform Trust’s new report Prison: the facts.

    Further measures are planned to drive down costs to levels claimed by the new much criticised private sector establishment HMP Oakwood, which is reported to cost around £15,500 per place and holds nearly 1,600 men.

    Despite evidence suggesting smaller prisons are safer and more effective than larger establishments, holding people closer to home with a higher ratio of staff to prisoners and more emphasis on resettlement, the government plans to build a super-sized prison in Wrexham holding 2,000 prisoners.

    Over 40 per cent of prisoners are now held in prisons of 1,000 places or more and nearly two-thirds of prisons in England and Wales are overcrowded by to the prison service’s own definition, holding 2,687 more prisoners than they were designed to. In the last two weeks prison numbers have swelled by over 500 – equivalent to the population of a small prison.

    Strict controls on recruitment and high levels of staff sickness, the closure of 15 prisons, the transfer of a further two prisons to the private sector and a 23 per cent reduction in the number of prison officers employed in publicly run prisons since March 2010 have created a system stretched to its limit. Reductions in staffing levels impact on safety and the amount of time prisoners are able to spend their time engaged in purposeful activity. Nearly half (46 per cent) of adults are reconvicted within one year of release, rising to 58 per cent for those sentenced to 12 months or less.

    The number of occasions Prison Service Gold Command, (the national group convened during serious incidents and disturbances), has been opened over the last three years has increased by 153 per cent since 2011-12. In 2013-14 it opened on 81 occasions. There has also been a 14 per cent rise in serious prisoner-on-prisoner assaults between 2010 and 2013 , and the number of deaths in custody last year was the highest on record.

    According to HM Chief Inspector of Prisons, Nick Hardwick, both “the quantity and quality of purposeful activity in which prisoners are engaged [has] plummeted” in 2012-13, reporting the worst outcomes in six years. In over half of prisons results were judged to be not sufficiently good or poor. He also warned in 2012: “Resources are now stretched very thinly [...] there is a pretty clear choice for politicians and policy makers – reduce prison populations or increase prison budgets.”

    This report comes only a month after the Prison Reform Trust found evidence that the new Incentives and Earned Privileges (IEP) scheme, which includes a ban on prisoners receiving books and other basic items, is eliciting a strong sense of injustice in prisons and undermining opportunities for effective rehabilitation.

    Juliet Lyon, Director of the Prison Reform Trust said: “These latest figures reveal a prison service having to cope with unprecedented strain. Ministers must heed the warning signs. Rising assault and suicide rates, fewer staff and less constructive activity, call into question the government’s commitment to safety and decency. Slashing prison budgets and introducing harsher regimes while warehousing ever greater numbers overseen by fewer staff is no way to transform rehabilitation.”

    * Read Prison: the facts here: http://www.prisonreformtrust.org.uk/Portals/0/Documents/Prison%20the%20f...

    [Ekk/4]


              White House Expects Justice Crackdown On Legalized Marijuana        
    The Justice Department will step up enforcement of federal law against recreational marijuana, White House spokesman Sean Spicer said Thursday, offering the Trump administration's strongest indication to date of a looming crackdown on the drug.
              By: Doug Cornelius        
    I don't hate the MoFo design. I like their black and white look over the typical scales of justice, stock photos of people reading and people standing in front of courthouses seen on many lawyer websites. I still don;t know why you need clickwrap terms on the app if you don't have them on the website.
              Lettre ouverte à François Hollande, Président de la République mais Vincent Peillon, Ministre de l'Éducation Nationale peut y jeter un coup d'oeil aussi        

    Cher monsieur,

    Je me permets de vous adresser cette petite bafouille en tant que

    • nana qui a voté à gauche par idéologie (même si, putain, vous êtes bien conscients que vous êtes sacrément attendus au tournant, rapport à l'espoir et à la notion de "justice" (mot-clé de votre campagne) que vous avez su distiller ces derniers mois).
    • enseignante effarée par cette profonde dégradation de l'éducation nationale causée en grande partie par le précédent gouvernement et aussi par une vision de l'éducation de certains parents, complètement à côté de la plaque.
    • blogueuse qui ne sait pas manier la langue de bois (je ne voudrais pas crâner mais j'ai écrit un bouquin trash et malheureusement on ne peut plus véridique et lucide sur certains dysfonctionnements de notre belle institution) (''Chroniques d'une prof qui en saigne'' - Éditions Privé, Michel Lafon)

    Je viens d'entendre Vincent Peillon, ministre de l'éducation nationale, sur France Inter annoncer que "tous ceux qui veulent participer à la refondation de l'école républicaine sont les bienvenus".

    Et bien, me voici.


    Vincent Peillon par franceinter




    Vincent Peillon par franceinter


    Normalement, j'aime bien France Inter mais là j'ai trouvé certaines questions un peu vagues voire inintéressantes... "quand avez-vous appris que vous étiez désigné ?", combiné à du blabla inutile sur de vraies ou fausses querelles internes, le divorce Hollande-Aubry (prendre la voix du Figaro)... Quatre minutes à ne pas parler d'éducation. Je sais bien qu'il faut une introduction. Mais "COMME MÊME" comme dirait Brenda-Gwendoline, 13 ans et demi, il serait temps de passer aux choses sérieuses car il reste... ah ouais... moins de six minutes d'interview.

    Je vous parlerai essentiellement de l'enseignement au collège qui est celui que je maîtrise le mieux. Nul doute que parmi les - j'espère - nombreux commentaires, mes lecteurs, collègues et citoyens préoccupés par l'avenir des écoles maternelle, primaire et lycées, sauront vous indiquer les mesures hautement souhaitées afin d'insuffler une nouvelle énergie salvatrice.

    Le manque de dialogue avec les principaux partenaires d'éducation (notamment et surtout les enseignants) fut l'un des écueils du précédent gouvernement... un ministre totalement déconnecté des réalités du terrain, uniquement intéressé par des chiffres, des statistiques et autres résultats transformant l'école en une entreprise rentable... des décisions prises sans une réelle concertation avec des professeurs confrontés aux problèmes envahissant les établissements scolaires. Bien évidemment, je ne vous apprends rien en vous disant que l'école ne produit rien. Elle est là pour développer connaissances, compétences, savoirs et savoirs-faire chez des enfants et des adolescents, le tout en instillant esprit critique, curiosité intellectuelle, envie de réussir... Il ne semble pas inutile de rappeler ces valeurs fondamentales de l'école, car celles-ci semblent s'être estompées pour laisser place aux notions de rendement et d'économie.

    Dans cet entretien, Vincent Peillon a abordé succinctement :

    • l'abrogation du décret concernant l'évaluation des enseignants (trop choupi ♥) (et je vous conseille de cliquer ici pour lire ma vision de l'évaluation des enseignants)
    • les 2000 postes en plus d'encadrement dès la rentrée 2012 : auxiliaires de vie scolaire pour les élèves handicapés, assistants pédagogiques, assistants d'éducation, infirmiers/infirmières scolaires, assistants sociaux, conseillers d'orientation (trop choupi ♥)... et du personnel pour assurer la sécurité dans les bahuts difficiles (il va falloir m'expliquer plus précisément les tenants et aboutissants du concept. Je ne suis pas contre du tout mais encore faut-il savoir comment cela sera mis en place)
    • le retour des RASED (trop choupi ♥)
    • la création de postes pour alléger les classes et pour que les élèves ne se retrouvent pas sans prof de SVT pendant deux mois (trop choupi ♥)
    • l'allocation de rentrée scolaire +25% (trop choupi ♥)
    • le retour de la formation des futurs enseignants (trop choupi ♥)
    • le retour de la semaine de 5 jours en laissant le choix aux collectivités locales du mercredi ou du samedi (sachant que les deux ont leurs avantages et leurs inconvénients aka ouais c'est choupi d'avoir son samedi ET son dimanche... mais se lever 5 jours d'affilée très tôt le matin pour des enfants et des ados, c'est pas méga choupi)
    • l'apprentissage, voire le pré-apprentissage sous statut scolaire et non plus comme un contrat de travail lambda + revaloriser les filières pro. (trop choupi ♥)

    Les trucs qui me semblent méga vitaux afin de redresser une structure branlante :

    • Alléger les effectifs des classes. Parce que 28 élèves en 6ème, c'est un peu cruel et criminel pour les enseignants ET pour les élèves. On parle d'individualiser le parcours de chaque élève... Méga choupi comme principe, méga logique... MAIS pour cela, il faut du temps. Et du temps, on n'en a pas lorsqu'on a 28 élèves tous plus différents les uns que les autres, avec des personnalités, des possibilités et des besoins différents. Qui dit création de postes, dit création de classes. C'est l'un des piliers qui permettra une réelle progression. 20 élèves maximum par classe. Et ouais. Faut savoir ce qu'on veut.
    • Rouvrir des classes adaptées. IME, ULIS, SEGPA... Il n'y a pas assez de places en IME, alors on parque (oui PARQUER, il n'y a pas d'autre mot) les gamins en SEGPA. Du coup, les élèves relevant de SEGPA n'ont plus de places et se retrouvent dans des classes-types où ils galèrent et où il est difficile de les aider à cause des effectifs trop lourds et du manque d'AVS (Auxilaire de Vie Scolaire) et crevette sur la paëlla => FORMER LES PROFS POUR ENSEIGNER À CE PUBLIC SI PARTICULIER et surtout ne recruter que des enseignants volontaires avec une prime supplémentaire car il s'agit d'un investissement émotionnel et nerveux énorme.
    • Afin de pallier le manque de profs remplaçants, pourquoi ne pas créer un statut spécifique avec un salaire plus élevé, de véritables remboursements de frais de déplacement pour des profs certifiés/agrégés volontaires qui se déplaceraient dans leur académie afin d'assurer des remplacements plus ou moins longs. Cela éviterait de devoir recruter des personne via "Le Bon Coin" ou Pôle Emploi qui ne sont absolument pas qualifiées, formées pour se retrouver devant des élèves, pas forcément dociles et assoiffés de connaissances.
    • Transformer certains "enseignements" en disciplines à part entière. Je pense à l'Histoire des Arts (et pourquoi ne pas en faire une option facultative au Brevet des collèges ?), au B2i, à la formation aux premiers secours... Il y a d'énooooormes incohérences... je pense à l'option Euro anglais qui ne compte pas pour le Brevet... je pense à l'Histoire des Arts qui est coefficient 2 tandis que les autres matières ne sont que coefficient 1... et quid de l'histoire-géographie qui ne compte pas pour le contrôle continu ??? L'Histoire des Arts est un concept intéressant qui demande un encadrement spécifique avec des enseignants qualifiés. Pour l'instant, il s'agit juste d'un vaste bordel qui appartient à tout le monde et à personne.
    • Lever un énorme tabou... les élèves mal-élevés dont l'éducation reçue à la maison n'est pas compatible avec les règles d'un établissement scolaire et par extension avec les règles de la société. Sur France Inter, Vincent Peillon a commis une maladresse rhétorique en désignant les enseignants comme "ceux qui éduquent nos enfants"... J'aurais préféré que l'on parle de "ceux qui INSTRUISENT" nos enfants. Dans mon collège, certains parents ont déjà maintes fois menacé certains enseignants de je cite : "si vous embêtez encore ma fille, la prochaine fois que je viens c'est pour vous mettre deux balles dans la tête" / "Moi, je ne viens qu'une fois pour parler. Après je casse tout et je vous défonce". Pour l'instant, les menaces sont restées en l'air même si l'an dernier, une collègue a failli se prendre le poing d'un père d'élève dans la tronche parce qu'elle avait osé disputer sa fille qui faisait un caprice en classe... Il y a un véritable malaise. Dans certaines zones (défavorisées, rurales, isolées...), le manque d'éducation, de repères, de règles de courtoisie est devenu le problème number one de l'école. Les élèves ne travaillent pas, se montrent insolents avec un sentiment d'impunité insupportable. Comment faire pour éduquer les parents ? Des cours de parentalité ? Il est nécessaire de repérer très tôt les élèves perturbateurs qui manquent cruellement de bases d'éducation parce que malheureusement, certains parents sont persuadés qu'avant l'âge de 4 ans, les enfants sont incapables d'être éduqués... J'ai déjà parlé de ce problème dans cet article et les commentaires qui en ont découlé, cliquez ici pour le (re)découvrir.

    Vincent Peillon a également adroitement ajouté que les enseignants n'étaient pas des crevards, qu'ils souhaitaient tout d'abord que l'école redore son blason et que les élèves progressent et réussissent dans de bonnes conditions et que les augmentations de salaire n'étaient pas leur cheval de bataille principal.
    Pas faux.
    Néanmoins, avant de nous payer plus, il serait choupi de payer déjà ce qui nous est dû. Les frais de déplacement sont remboursés jusqu'à 6 à 8 mois en retard, certaines HSE effectuées ne sont pas payées faute de moyens, et surtout les heures supp' de septembre ne sont absolument pas payées, ce qui est quand même hallucinant, idem pour la prime de professeur principal qui n'est versée qu'à partir d'octobre (c'est bien connu qu'à la rentrée, le prof principal fait des sudokus au lieu de préparer l'accueil des élèves...). L'état a la réputation d'être le plus mauvais payeur... Il serait bon d'inverser un peu cette tendance.

    Je compte sur vous pour ne pas tout faire foirer. Entourez-vous de profs, de conseillers qui sont sur le terrain et qui sauront vraiment vous aiguiller... Ne faites pas comme vos prédécesseurs qui ne se sont intéressés qu'aux profs obséquieux, carriéristes bons à rien mais prêts à tout...


    (un prof carriériste ? c'est un oxymore, non ?!)


              Le jour où je fus d'accord avec Natacha Polony        

    Jusqu'à l'émission de Laurent Ruquier, je ne connaissais pas grand chose de Natacha Polony mis à part des articles dans Marianne que je ne lisais pas ou très peu parce qu'à l'époque :

    • Je vivais en Angleterre... donc je me gavais de culture anglophone : de Marian Keyes à Francis Bacon, de Trisha Goodard à Eastenders en passant par les peintures de Turner, les merveilleuses cartes et papier-cadeau de chez Clinton's, les bath bombs de Lush, les fish & chips, TOUT Jane Austen, mes premiers sushi chez Yo ! Sushi, l'humour de Graham Norton ou Stephen Fry, Harry Potter encore et encore, les Bacardi Breezers (surtout ceux à l'ananas, à la pastèque et au pamplemousse), respirer Londres (et tousser), les take-away du vendredi soir avec Joolz ma coloc' (Fried Rice Noodles Singapore Style ♥ ou les Crispy Pancake Duck ♥)

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    • Je préparais mon mémoire sur Shakespeare, ses constantes allusions de cul et sa guerre des sexes adaptée au cinéma... donc je passais mon temps à consulter des archives poussiéreuses dans des bibliothèques hyper classes de Stratford-Upon-Avon tout en relisant jour et nuit les pièces avec un stabilo dans une main et un thé à la bergamote dans l'autre (et aussi des Oreos)
    • Je galérais entre l'Amant anglais et Victor Newman tout en gérant le harcèlement d'un élève du lycée où j'étais assistante qui mettait des mots flippants sur mon pare-brise genre "I LOVE YOU. YOU BELONG TO ME"
    • Je passais mon CAPES à base de Tennessee Williams ♥ et de Joseph Conrad (*BAILLER* + *VOMIR*) donc je bossais tout le temps en essayant de garder un semblant de vie sociale (aka picoler avec mes potes et voir grandir mon filleuldamour)

    Et puis, il y a quelques semaines, Sabine a parlé du blog de Natacha Polony et de son billet apparemment controversé sur lequel ont craché bon nombre d'enseignants, puis des lecteurs m'ont également envoyé le lien de l'article me demandant de réagir et de donner mon avis.

    Vous pouvez lire son billet ici et je vous encourage chaudement à le dévorer en opinant du chef.

    À la base, je ne traîne pas trop sur le Figaro... journal éloigné de mes convictions politiques et surtout j'évite soigneusement de lire les commentaires (que ce soit du Figaro ou d'autres journaux d'ailleurs) des lecteurs sur le web qui sont un mix d'intolérance, de connerie monumentale, de vindicte gratuite et de xénophobie.
    J'ai tout de même lu avec intérêt et un verre de Gini ce billet, et au fil des lignes, j'ai commencé à écarquiller les yeux façon lori.

    Comment, je suis 100% d'accord avec TOUT ce qui est écrit dans ce putain d'excellent billet.

    Nat' résume parfaitement et de manière éloquente et pas pédante toute ma pensée et ma vision de l'école.
    Mais genre, à fond quoi.
    Tout ce qu'elle a écrit, je l'ai moi-même exprimé ici (mais avec beaucoup plus de "sa mère la pute qui suce les bites par paquets de douze" et de "putain de sa race").

    Extraits de phrases-choc :

    • "Le portrait d’une école qui n’a plus qu’une ambition : “fabriquer de la bonne employabilité".
    • "Une société en cours de décivilisation “où chacun fonctionne comme une sorte de structure solitaire qui exige des autres mais qui jamais ne se sent redevable".
    • "Des réformes qui transformaient l’enseignement de la littérature en une démarche utilitariste visant à instrumentaliser le patrimoine culturel et littéraire pour en garder uniquement les notions d’argumentation, de négociation, etc... considérées comme utiles au monde du travail. Désormais, on devait étudier les textes pour en tirer de la matière à débat".
    • "j’ai pu constater ce qu’était le niveau d’un bachelier français moyen : il suffit de regarder les consignes de corrections au bac pour comprendre : l’orthographe ne doit pas retirer plus de deux points, si bien que lorsque les phrases ne sont pas en français, ce n’est pas grave. D’autant que cela fait des années qu’on répète aux enseignants que l’orthographe est la science des imbéciles."
    • Sa vision de la méthode globale (une hérésie nuisible), son opinion sur la notion de classement, sur la lecture ou sur le manque de respect des élèves...

    J'ai beaucoup de mal à comprendre les enseignants qui ne partagent pas cette vision et qui hurlent qu'elle n'est qu'une sale réac et que bouhhhh comment c'est trop caca-boudin avec des arguments aussi solides qu'une maison construite par Numérobis et Amobonfis son rival.

    "Natacha ou la nostalgie de l'autoritarisme"
    => Je dis NON et NON les p'tits loups. Je suis fatiguée, lassée, usée par ce nouvel amalgame qui consiste à confondre "autorité" et "autoritarisme". S'il y a quarante ans, un instit' avait le pouvoir (voire le devoir) de faire régner dans sa classe un silence basé sur la crainte de s'en prendre une dans la gueule ; à présent, certains osent à peine mettre un mot dans le carnet d'un élève redoutant les conséquences d'un tel geste...
    Énorme manque d'équilibre entre une génération qui avait peur de se prendre une règle en fer sur le bout des doigts et une génération que l'on couve et surcouve, fustigeant toute tentative d'inculquer respect et rigueur... Bien évidemment, il ne faut pas tomber dans une généralisation excessive. Il y a quarante ans, tous les profs n'étaient pas des tortionnaires, ravis de pouvoir filer une mandale à un élève insolent... et de nos jours, tous les parents d'élèves ne sont pas de sombres abrutis couvrant leur enfant à la moindre bévue.
    Néanmoins, je ne peux que constater le manque de soutien dans les hautes sphères et dans les familles quant à l'attitude et au manque de travail de beaucoup, beaucoup d'élèves. Un élève qui ne fait jamais ses devoirs. Un élève qui rend copie blanche à chaque éval'. Un élève qui monopolise constamment le temps de parole en classe et tente de négocier et de nuancer la moindre remarque/critique de son prof. L'élève, ce mini-adulte qui doit pouvoir s'exprimer même si effectivement il n'a rien à dire...
    En 2011, un prof a du mal à confisquer un objet non approprié à son cours (portable, console de jeux, magazine de foot, miroir...) sans s'attirer les foudres des familles, voire de sa hiérarchie. En 2011, un prof a du mal à mettre en retenue des élèves relativement récalcitrants puisque personne dans sa famille ne veut venir le chercher car ça fait trop chier de devoir retourner au bahut à 18h. En 2011, un prof est obligé de se justifier à genoux lorsqu'il donne une punition. Il existe des profs injustes qui auraient tendance à imposer leur volonté de puissance (Nietzsche forever) mais ne nous leurrons pas, la majorité des enseignants est plutôt honnête et bienveillante et lorsqu'un prof écrit un mot dans le carnet pour expliquer à la famille de Bryanna, que pour la troisième fois consécutive, elle n'a pas fait ses devoirs et que sa propension à bavarder constamment tout en se recoiffant devient un tantinet insupportable, il s'attend au pire à une simple signature de la famille, indiquant qu'elle a pris connaissance des remontrances de l'enseignant... au mieux, à une petite réponse du style "Merci de nous avoir prévenus. Comptez sur notre soutien et notre vigilance afin que ce genre d'incident ne se reproduise pas". Mais dans bien des familles, au mieux, le mot est signé en quatrième vitesse et ne donne lieu à AUCUNE discussion entre parents et enfants ou alors juste un "bon faut travailler Bryanna hein" et au pire, une petite réponse vient augmenter la tension artérielle de l'enseignant qui sera ravi d'apprendre qu'il devrait se mêler de ce qui le regarde et qu'il faut arrêter de punir Bryanna pour n'importe quoi.

    J'aime à répéter à chaque parent et à chacun de mes élèves, qu'à partir de l'instant où il franchit les grilles de l'établissement, un enfant devient un élève. C'est-à-dire qu'il ne dépend plus des règles de la maison mais de celles de l'établissement. Et c'est là où le bât blesse malheureusement. Si à la maison, le mot d'ordre est "vas-y mon loupiot, agis selon TON rythme et TES envies", il y a fort à parier que ça va lui faire tout bizarre à l'école quand on va essayer de lui faire comprendre la notion de contrainte et de compromis, mamelles de la vie en collectivité.
    Il y a quelques semaines, j'ai reçu la famille de Kélyan. La veille, Kélyan s'était fritté avec Enzo qui avait accusé sa mère d'accomplir des actes buccaux à tout va. Les termes "bâtard" et "va manger tes morts sale connard" avaient été prononcés de toute part (Rappelons que Kélyan et Enzo ont 11 ans et qu'il est toujours appréciable de constater qu'aux âmes bien nées, la violence verbale, à l'instar de la valeur, n'attend pas le nombre des années). Kélyan s'est alors jeté sur Enzo et l'a bourriné de coups de poing. Y a pas à tortiller, l'arcade sourcilière, ça saigne vachement quand même. Enzo s'en est sorti avec un beau cocard et tous deux ont été exclus quelques jours.
    La famille de Kélyan a immédiatement hurlé à l'injustice car c'était Enzo qui avait commencé et Kélyan n'avait fait qu'appliquer l'un des principes fondateurs de sa famille : SE VENGER.

    La maman de Kélyan : "On a toujours dit à Kélyan qu'il doit se défendre. Si on l'insulte, si on le tape, il doit rendre les insultes et les coups. C'est une question d'honneur"
    Princesse Soso : "Le souci c'est que nous avons des règles différentes à l'école. Nous passons notre temps à expliquer aux élèves que toute violence verbale ou physique est proscrite. Lorsqu'un élève se fait insulter ou est en passe de se faire frapper, nous l'encourageons à s'éloigner le plus vite possible afin de prévenir un adulte. J'ajoute qu'il y a une différence entre se défendre et rendre les coups... Nous avons une tolérance pour un élève qui, pour éviter un coup, va repousser son camarade... mais, en revanche, il ne doit pas, à son tour, se montrer violent et attaquer"
    Le papa de Kélyan : "Mon fils n'est pas une chiffe molle qui va chialer et cafter auprès des profs. Il règle le problème tout seul. Enzo méritait les coups. C'est une question d'honneur"
    Princesse Soso : "Votre fils est avant tout un élève au sein du collège et il doit se conformer au règlement qui stipule clairement la conduite à adopter en cas de conflit avec un autre élève. Kélyan devait s'éloigner d'Enzo et prévenir un adulte des insultes qu'il subissait. Des sanctions auraient été prises uniquement à l'encontre d'Enzo et Kélyan ne serait pas actuellement exclu, considéré lui-aussi comme fautif"
    La maman de Kélyan : "Mais il n'a fait que se défendre ! Il n'allait pas laisser ce sale petit vaurien m'insulter et me traiter de pute !"
    Princesse Soso : "Mais Kélyan ne s'est pas défendu, il s'est vengé. Cela n'a RIEN à voir. Je comprends tout à fait que Kélyan se soit énervé, le souci est qu'il a perdu le contrôle et qu'il a cédé à ses pulsions. Il a fait une erreur et est puni en conséquence. Je comprends qu'il ait fait cette erreur, l'important est qu'il admette qu'on ne peut pas agir ainsi au collège. Le vieil adage "on ne résout rien par la violence" est totalement en adéquation avec les règles de l'établissement. Kélyan s'est acharné sur Enzo, il ne s'est pas contrôlé et raisonné. Ce genre d'incident peut arriver mais ne doit pas se reproduire"
    Le papa de Kélyan : "Comme je dis toujours, si la violence ne résout rien c'est que tu n'as pas cogné assez fort !" (rires gras)
    La maman de Kélyan : "Chez nous, on se venge quand on nous a fait un sale coup. C'est comme ça. Et Kélyan, il suit d'abord les règles de sa famille. C'est à l'école d'accepter des élèves qui ont une éducation différente"
    Princesse Soso : "Absolument pas. C'est aux familles de s'adapter aux règles de l'école. C'est comme si vous me disiez que c'est la société qui doit s'adapter aux hors-la-loi..."
    La maman de Kélyan : "Vous traitez Kélyan de hors-la-loi ???"
    Le papa de Kélyan : "Ouais parce qu'on peut très bien immédiatement retirer Kélyan du collège hein !"
    Princesse Soso : "Vous commencez sévèrement à me courir sur le haricot tous les deux À mon avis, vous allez avoir du mal à trouver un établissement scolaire qui prône la vendetta et tolère la violence... Kélyan n'a pas respecté les règles, il est puni. Idem pour Enzo. Il n'y a strictement rien à négocier. Kélyan doit apprendre à se contrôler lorsqu'il a envie de frapper. Le souci, c'est que si à la maison, vous l'encouragez à avoir recours à la violence, on n'est pas sorti de l'auberge..."
    Le papa de Kélyan : "C'est comme ça dans notre famille et on ne va pas changer pour vous faire plaisir"
    Princesse Soso : "Alors, je pense que nous n'avons plus rien de constructif à nous dire et cet entretien est à présent terminé"

    La famille de Kélyan n'est malheureusement pas un cas isolé et il est de moins en moins rare de voir des parents encourager leur progéniture à appliquer la loi du Talion.

    "Natacha ou le rigorisme injuste et traumatisant"
    => En défendant la notion de classement, Natacha s'en prend plein la tronche... Le classement stigmatise, traumatise, met en lumière les clivages et décourage... Tous les élèves sont égaux et il est tout simplement anti-pédagogique de vouloir en faire briller certains tandis que d'autres demeurent dans une obscurité, symbole d'ignorance et de retard. La société est suffisamment encline à exacerber les inégalités, inutile d'appliquer cette même injustice à l'école.
    On prend le problème à l'envers. Le classement encourage, motive, galvanise également. Il n'est pas uniquement source d'échec et de larmes.
    Il ne faut pas oublier que 95% des élèves travaillent pour tout SAUF pour eux :

    • Ils travaillent pour faire plaisir à leur famille.
    • Ils travaillent pour ne pas se faire engueuler.
    • Ils travaillent parce que c'est comme ça et pas autrement. Ils n'ont pas véritablement le choix de par leur éducation voire un certain endoctrinement.
    • Ils travaillent pour avoir une Wii et une PS3.
    • Ils travaillent parce qu'ils aiment bien le prof.

    Je me souviens très bien que mon instit' de CE1 nous répétait constamment : "Vous ne l'avez pas encore compris et/ou accepté... mais n'oubliez jamais que c'est pour VOUS que vous travaillez". La bonne blague. La petite fille de 6 ans que j'étais travaillait parce que c'était sympa d'apprendre des trucs et en plus ça faisait drôlement sourire papa, maman, mamie ou papy lorsque je ramenais des 10/10, des bons points et des images.
    La carotte, la récompense ne sont pas de vilains mots au sein d'une classe. Autant je suis la première à hurler lorsque j'entends des élèves réclamer un SALAIRE ("ouais les profs sont payés pour venir au collège, on devrait être payé aussi"), autant je ne suis pas réfractaire à un système de récompense ponctuel destiné à encourager et faire plaisir. Apprendre pour apprendre c'est terriblement difficile à assimiler... alors de temps en temps, il n'est pas nuisible d'insérer la notion de cadeau afin de féliciter un élève pour ses progrès et ses résultats.
    Mettre un sticker pailleté sur de bonnes copies, offrir des babioles pour Noël aux élèves méritants... de petits gestes qui sont une sorte de MERCI. Merci pour ta bonne volonté. Merci de jouer le jeu. Merci de venir dans mon cours dans le but de travailler. Merci de grandir et d'évoluer dans le bon sens.
    Un peu de gratitude mêlée à un soupçon de démagogie : la clé du succès ?
    Si l'on écoute certains enseignants, certains parents et certains soit-disant spécialistes de l'enfance et de l'éducation, le système de récompense est louable s'il est appliqué à TOUS les élèves. Sous-entendu, hors de question que dans une classe de 26, 11 élèves aient un chouette cadeau, 7 aient un petit cadeau et 8 n'aient rien du tout. C'est-trop-pas-zuste (Caliméro forever).
    Et bien non.
    Faut quand même pas déconner. Cindy a 17 de moyenne parce qu'elle a des facilités et qu'elle bosse, Lorenzo a 13 de moyenne en cravachant grave parce qu'il a de sacrées difficultés, Perrine a 12 de moyenne en foutant strictement que dalle mais comme elle a de grosses facilités, elle sauve les meubles, Lucas a 5 de moyenne en branlant strictement que tchi... et faudrait tous les récompenser de la même manière ???

    Eh, on n'est pas à l'École des fans là, les p'tits loups !

    Le classement ou la récompense au mérite permet de faire comprendre à un élève que ses efforts portent leurs fruits et peuvent être source de satisfaction, de plaisir et de reconnaissance. Cela évite que les élèves paresseux s'enlisent dans une passivité apathique "puisque de toute façon, on a tous le même cadeau à la fin".

    Pour Noël, les élèves méritants ("méritants" ne signifie pas forcément avoir 19,2/20... Les élèves méritants font de leur mieux, sont volontaires et agréables, ils viennent en classe pour progresser, ils sont polis, respectueux et aident à instaurer une bonne ambiance de travail) ont le droit de participer à des quiz qui leur permettent de gagner une petite surprise (un porte-clé, un petit bijou, un petit parfum, des stickers, un petit bouquin, des règles ou des stylos avec écrit dessus "Happy Christmas from your teacher" ou "Very good work ! Well done !"... etc.). Les élèves qui se sont récoltés des mots ou des punitions pour leur manque de travail ou pour leur attitude inconvenante se voient immédiatement exclus de ce bonus. Ça me semble normal et logique. Genre je ne vais quand même pas filer un porte-clé phosphorescent que j'ai acquis avec mes propres deniers à Johnny qui refuse de venir au tableau pour corriger un exo, qui a 01/20 de moyenne en anglais et qui ne fait jamais ses devoirs..
    On cherche constamment à encourager les plus faibles. OK... mais c'est choupi aussi d'encourager les plus forts. Ce n'est pas de l'élitisme, c'est un juste retour des choses.

    Cela fait également écho à l'idée qu'il faut supprimer les notes afin que la coopération prenne le pas sur la compétition.
    BULLSHIT.
    Encore une fois, on prend le problème à l'envers. La compétition peut être saine et source d'émulation. La compétition n'est pas uniquement faite pour humilier les plus faibles... Ce qu'il faut supprimer, ce ne sont pas les notes bien évidemment, mais le collège unique, source d'inégalités et d'humiliation. Lorsqu'un enfant a de mauvais résultats, il faut comprendre pourquoi. Il n'a pas appris ? il n'a pas compris ? A-t-il la possibilité de travailler sereinement à la maison ? Est-il encadré, encouragé par sa famille ? Autant de questions auxquelles il est parfois difficile de trouver des réponses...

    Ahh la "coopération"... le nouveau terme didactique à la mode. Les élèves doivent travailler en équipe afin justement de ne plus entretenir une compétition individuelle... Le travail en îlots tel qu'il est présenté par Marie Rivoire (qui a écrit un guide à ce sujet) est une idée judicieuse mais selon moi, absolument pas applicable à TOUTES les séances de cours. C'est top à doses homéopathiques. Il faut impérativement qu'un élève apprenne à travailler SEUL, à se concentrer et à se retrouver avec lui-même pour affronter, élucider, comprendre, analyser, déduire... Et encore une fois, je rejoins Natacha quant à sa théorie sur le problème de la lecture... Une écrasante majorité d'élèves, même d'excellents élèves, n'aime pas lire. C'est chiant. C'est long. C'est difficile. Et ouais... à force d'activités ludiques et surtout courtes, à force de coopération... les élèves ne sont pas préparés à affronter la lecture, cet exercice solitaire qui demande une construction mentale et une concentration qui ne s'acquièrent pas en un coup de baguette magique. Avant de travailler à plusieurs, il faut savoir travailler seul... C'est d'une logique implacable.

    00000000_ilots.jpg

    Je ne m'étendrai pas sur le problème de l'orthographe, sur la langue malmenée, écorchée, humiliée par une paresse et un mépris qui me sont écoeurants.
    De très bons élèves ne parviennent pas à écrire sans erreur et confondent "c'est" et "sait"... "et" et "est"... "ça" et "sa"... La phonétique prend le pas sur les règles. On écrit pour communiquer et plus pour célébrer une langue parfois ardue et alambiquée mais aussi symbole d'une délicieuse rigueur salvatrice qui permet de développer mémoire et agilité intellectuelle...

    Il est vraiment temps que l'école 2.0 arrive.
    Une école de l'équilibre avec un cadre et une autorité juste qui n'exclut pas une certaine décontraction. Une école où apprendre n'est pas une simple obligation ou une contrainte mais une source de plaisir et d'épanouissement. Une école qui développe l'esprit, une école qui nivelle par le haut. Une école qui se sert de son passé, non pas pour l'anéantir mais pour en extraire les vertus afin de faire de l'école du XXIème siècle un lieu d'apprentissage où chacun a sa chance, où chacun est en sécurité, où chacun a la possibilité de progresser, où chacun doit jouer le jeu...

    Vous n'êtes pas d'accord avec ça ? Vous pensez que c'est irréalisable ?


    Bienvenue en dystopie, alors.


              Wire 1 on FX-truly great episode        

    After mildly slagging off the Wire (that’s British for insulting, I have decided to insert idiomatic translations) I am forced to bow before it. I had forgotten that it ebbs and flows in quality. From great to genius, The episode on Monday on FX was a true work of genius.

    The programme focuses on Bodie, di Angelo and Chief Daniels, each of whom is at a pivotal moment. There are so many layers of meaning that it I can’t begin to do it justice. I would be outputting exhuberantly semiotic stuff until next year. And that would be just for one episode.

    So, I’ll just pick out a few points in a shamefully lame way.

    On third viewing, I realised that Bodie puts on the executioner’s cap before he shoots the other child, in an episode of true horror. After this, he wears it more or less consistently. It expresses Bodie’s having become a “soldier,” a disposable cheap executioner for the Darksdales.

    At the moment of the shooting, Bodie’s lieutenant is sobbing. The about-to-be-victim pisses himself. Bodie is horrified at having to shoot a boy. But he is not going to stop what he is doing either. He gets the boy to affirm that he is a man not a boy. Earlier, the about-to-be-shot boy has told Bodie that he is “a man” rather than a boy. At which point he looks about fourteen. Even the killers, despatched by Stringer Bell to do the shooting, look older. And one of the them looks 16.

    Bodie has made a sort of low-level Faustian deal with Stringer Bell, as Stringer has implied that he can rise in the business if he gets rid of Ritchie. So, Bodie has already prepared to kill for a slight chance of a small improvement in his circumstances.

    The Wire writers are showing us that the soldiers are children, living in desperate poverty and shooting each other over crumbs, both victims and perpetrators of the social values that support the whole system.

    The moral implications of this killing are played out for Bodie through later series, as Bodie begins to dissent more and more from his role and to pay a heavy price for becoming an ethical being.

    One immediate moral implication is that diAngelo, who has been getting increasingly disenchanted with his part in the Barksdales and is coming to ask himself moral questions about his life, explodes with anger about the murder of the child. This sets in train a decision to betray the gang. Which will soon become an epic moral struggle for him.

    Both diAngelo and Bodie find that the development of remorse and the stirring of an ethical conscience do not bring any rewards. I think the Wire breaks some ground here. There is no sense of virtue justly rewarded and villainy justly punished. It is not a simple morality tale. Characters are killed off or survive, partly as a result of their actions but mainly as a consequence of the actions of others. You can’t just step out of “the game” by repenting.

    At the same that diAngelo is developing an ethical sense, Chief Daniels is doing the same. There is battle of wits, rather than guns, between Commissioner Burrell and Chief Daniels. Burrell tries to applythe blackmail leverage he’s been holding over Daniels. He is being ordered by the political machine to stop the investigation, because it had uncovered a money relationship between the Barksdale gang and some Senators.

    Daniels stands up, literally and metaphorically. As does di Angelo when he challenges Stringer Bell.

    Daniels reminds Burrell that others would lose more by exposing him than would Daniels. They would have already used their leverage but for the fact that the greatest fear of the political machine is publicity. They have no intention of using their information against Daniels. So he calls Burrell’s bluff.

    This stuff was powerfully moving. The moral complexities are laid out brilliantly through the masterly acting.

    (As well as the writing, – taken for granted as pure genius-, the direction, the costumes, the sets, the use of music and anything else you can think of. The HBO marketing is naff, but The Wire’s got to pull an audience to satisfy its paymasters. And for bringing the Sopranos and the Wire to the television, I will forgive HBO pretty well anything.


              Experiment in fear        

    This sounds brilliant. A tv show based on exposing the mental influence of the tabloids Not just tabloids in general, with their z-list celebs and soap opera stars, but the most mind-sapping terror-inducing tabloid – the Daily Mail.

    The film Supersize Me showed you are what you eat, but is it true that you are what you read?
    New documentary The Daily Mail Diet aims to find out as it follows film maker Nick Angel giving up all TV, radio, print and online news sources for 28 days – except for the Daily Mail.

    Mr Angel said: “It’s important to know what the Mail thinks, because it’s a lightning rod (or so it claims) to ‘Middle England’ – that ill-defined and slightly scary mass of people whose various incarnations include the ‘Moral Majority’ and ‘All Right Thinking People’.
    “And in a sense, there’s a little bit of Daily Mail in all of us – who hasn’t felt their cheeks flush and blood boil when snapped by a speed camera or confronted with some maddening example of NHS bureaucracy?
    “That’s what makes the Mail such a potent force – because while it’s loathsome, it’s also weirdly attuned to the dark heart of the British psyche.”

    If you can get to see this programme, it sounds really worth watching.

    By coincidence, it’s particularly relevant today. Following on from yesterday’s post here and Xanderg’s (of badnewsbible’s) excellent comments, the Daily Mail seems intent on lowering the bar below its even its own usual ant-limboing level.

    The Tory leader is calling for the repeal of the Human Rights Act and the government is doing its best to pull the despotism rug from under the Tories by itself challenging the operation of the courts. Scenting success for its worldview, the Daily Mail has redoubled its attack, over the Chindamo case.

    Here are three headlines from pages linking to today’s main Stephen Lawrence storyMail’s pages which carries the title ‘He’s no risk’: why jail boss backed Lawrence killer (I’m selflessly ploughing through this rubbish so you don’t have to. You can get the flavour of it from the headlines. But if you want to try an experimental diet of the Daily Mail, the link will take you to enough pages to undermine your will to live):
    The quangocrats who let Chindamo stay (They are referring to the Immigration Appeals Tribunal, not previously known as liberal trailblazers.)
    Chindamo’s Mafia gangster father awaiting trial for murder in Spain (Guilt by association, even though it seems the boy has barely seen his father since he was three.)
    COMMENTARY: Has the law deprived Frances Lawrence of justice?

    The Commentary refers to an editorial piece which tugs at the reader’s sympathy and emotions but signally fails to make any logical connection between sympathy for Frances Lawrence and their case for overriding EC law to deport Chindamo.

    Why does justice for Frances Lawrence require that her husband’s killer doesn’t live in Britain? I know that Great Britain is a small island (compared to the land mass of Canada, say) but there are still about 65 million of us living here. The chance of accidentally bumping into him in Tesco’s is statistically pretty slim.

    Just in case you think we are all certifiably mad in the UK, there’s a reasoned piece by Katie Ghose in the Guardian. This human rights hysteria threatens every one of us.

    Once again we are in the grip of human rights hysteria. Variously blamed for allowing prisoners access to porn and preventing police forces from publishing photographs of suspects, the latest attack on the Human Rights Act relates to the decision not to deport Learco Chindamo, who is serving a life sentence for the murder of head-teacher Philip Lawrence in 1995.
    Human rights have never been a passport to porn – nor were they an obstacle to the conviction or sentence of Chindamo, who is serving a minimum of 12 years for his brutal attack. But the truth takes a back seat when there are juicy headlines to be made out of human rights “lunacy”.


              DOJ says Title VII doesn’t apply to sexual orientation discrimination        
    The U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) has filed an amicus (friend-of-the-court) brief in a case in which an employee claims his employer violated Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 by discriminating against him based on his sexual orientation. The DOJ’s brief asserts that Title VII’s prohibition of sex discrimination does not extend […]
              Genesis account of creation and fall: what does the Church teach?        
    John Young

    The book of Genesis gives a vivid picture of creation. God is like a workman, constructing the universe over a period of six days, then resting on the Sabbath. There is a beautiful garden, trees with strange properties, the first two human beings, an evil serpent, an angel to guard the entrance after the couple have been cast out as punishment for eating forbidden fruit.

    Clearly there is a wealth of symbolism in the account but there is also true history. The Pontifical Biblical Commission, in 1909, declared that the first three chapters of Genesis contain true history, basing this answer on the testimony of both the Old and New Testaments, the almost unanimous opinion of the Fathers of the Church, and "the traditional view which - transmitted also by the Jewish people - has always been held by the Church" that these chapters contain the narrative of things that actually happened (see AAS, 1909, 567-569).

    Extremes

    Two extremes need to be avoided in biblical interpretation, whether in Genesis or elsewhere: taking things too literally or not taking them literally enough. Those who do the former are labelled fundamentalists, but we should recognise that they want to be faithful to the fundamentals of Christianity, whereas those who too easily dismiss the literal sense of a passage will often deny key doctrines - for instance, some even see the Resurrection of Christ as not involving the body that was buried in the tomb.

    In conversation with a Baptist student for the ministry, I once interpreted a Bible passage in a non-literal sense, and he suggested that if we do that with this particular text, we will not know where to stop. I can sympathise with his difficulty, for he didn't accept a Church that can guide us infallibly. But given a Magisterium guided by the Holy Spirit, we can stay on the right path.

    With that in mind, what things in the Genesis creation accounts must be accepted as having happened, and what is, or may be, only symbolism? First let us look at a number of things in the first category.

    Genesis says God created the heavens and the earth. This means that he willed the world to exist and it came into being from nothing. It depended on his infinite will, not on any previously existing matter - for there was none. The Catechism of the Catholic Church (n. 293) quotes the words of Vatican I that God, "from the beginning of time made out of nothing both orders of creation, the spiritual and the corporeal."

    That teaching has profound consequences for our spiritual lives because it shows our utter dependence on God. Once things got into existence they didn't become independent of their Creator: each being, including ourselves, depends as utterly on the divine will holding it in existence from moment to moment as creation did in its first instant (see the Catechism of the Catholic Church, n. 301.) A realisation of this lets us see more profoundly the truth of St Paul's words: "What have you that you have not received and if you have received why do you glory as though you had not received?" I Cor 4:7).

    It is a fact is that Adam and Eve were real individuals. They are not symbolic figures simply standing for early humanity. Pope Pius XII expressed the constant belief of the Church when he rejected the idea that Adam was not an individual man but only a name given to some group of our ancestors. He declared: "Original sin is the result of sin committed, in actual historical fact, by an individual man named Adam" (Encyclical Humani Generis, n. 37).

    It is certain that Satan tempted our first parents to commit the first sin. St John, in the Apocalypse, writes of "that ancient serpent, who is called the Devil and Satan, the deceiver of the whole world" (Rev 12:9). He is the leader of the fallen angels, those purely spiritual beings who rebelled against God and were cast into hell. (For the fallen angels and their tempting of the human race, see the Catechism of the Catholic Church, n. 391ff.)

    After Adam and Eve sinned, work became laborious, they suffered and would eventually die. These afflictions flowed from their fall from God's grace. The Catechism recalls: "By the radiance of this grace, all dimensions of man's life were confirmed. As long as he remained in the divine intimacy, man would not have to suffer or die" (n. 376).

    But Adam and Eve lost this grace when they sinned. "The harmony in which they had found themselves, thanks to original justice, is now destroyed, the control of the soul's spiritual faculties over the body is shattered" (n. 400).

    Bodily death

    God had warned our first parents that they would die if they ate the forbidden fruit. We don't know concretely what the sin was (eating fruit from a tree may be mere symbolism), but we do know that physical death was a consequence - people would not have died had Adam and Eve remained faithful to God's command. Vatican II speaks of "bodily death from which man would have been immune had he not sinned" ( Pastoral Constitution on the Church in the Modern World, n. 18).

    In a sense death is natural, for the body, from its very nature, is vulnerable to destruction, but God would have given us the preternatural gift of bodily immortality had Adam not sinned. Other preternatural gifts were lost too: we would have had clearer understanding, a stronger will, control over our passions.

    Seeing the present state of human nature we may be tempted to think God was unfair to us, for it was Adam, not us, who committed original sin. As the saying goes: Adam ate the apple and we get the stomach ache. But we need to realise that the gifts just mentioned are not owed to human nature since they would have been something over and above the natural.

    Most serious of all, sanctifying grace was lost by original sin. It is this grace which, infused into the soul by God, gives us a share in his own divine life. It raises us to a new level of being, making us capable of seeing him face to face in heaven. The essence of original sin in us consists in the privation of that share in the divine life.

    Genesis depicts the fall and its consequences in terms of Adam and Eve's attempts to hide from God, their expulsion from the garden, and their struggle to survive in a hostile world.


              The new evangelisation: 'missionary spirit' needed        
    Fr Dennis W. Byrnes

    In addressing the directors of the Pontifical Mission Societies in Rome on 14 May 2011, Pope Benedict XVI said: "Catholic activity at every level needs to be infused with missionary spirit. We are living in a world marked by new forms of slavery and injustice and the Church must evangelise constantly and fearlessly. This evangelisation must begin with a firm faith and an enthusiastic desire to share it with others. New problems and new forms of slavery, in fact, are emerging in our time."

    Again Benedict asks us to confront through new evangelisation the "Culture of Death" so evident in our world.

    So how do we empower the new evangelisation of which the Holy Father speaks? How do we challenge the so-called First World, which is well off and rich but uncertain about its future, and the developing countries where, partly because of a globalisation that is so often overly profit-driven, there's an increase in the masses of the poor, of emigrants and of the oppressed, among whom the light of hope grows weak?

    Evangelisation requires a living faith which plants within a person the desire to share that faith with others. This sharing of faith leads people to a sense of the sacred which allows them to be open to the Holy Spirit and leads to a desire to "transform the world according to God's plan".

    The fruit of evangelisation is to lead men and women away from all the modern forms of secularism and into the real freedom which comes through Jesus Christ and membership of His Church.

    In his 1990 encyclical on Mission Pope John Paul II spoke of the three faces of mission: the peoples, the new evangelisation and pastoral activity. Later, in 2000, he returned to a meaning of new evangelisation as mission within a new stage of human history, society and cultures. In his words, "New evangelisation is synonymous with mission."

    The predominant call is for a missionary effort by the Church worldwide to proclaim the Gospel of Jesus with new vigour. Some may interpret this as a one directional task to a world that has lost its way whereas the new evangelisation may most fruitfully be seen as a call to dialogue with the world and the plurality of its cultures to the benefit of both the Church and the world.

    The 2012 Synod on New Evangelisation offers a real opportunity for local churches to positively re-establish their mission within their own situations and cultures.

    It will be through the promptings of the Holy Spirit that this mission will be achieved. Since Vatican II we have seen traces of the Spirit's breathing new life, enthusiasm, wisdom and joy into our midst. Witness for example, the growth of Charismatic movements and encounter groups. Witness, too, the sudden surge of zeal that followed the election of Pope John Paul II, when suddenly scores of confused or hiding Catholics came forth, acknowledged their identity and responded positively to his many world pilgrimages. To the youth he presented a light in this dark world with his World Youth Days. The presence of the Holy Spirit is detectable in our times.

    The same Holy Spirit comes to us today, especially in the sacraments of Baptism and Confirmation, to call us to mission in Christ's Church. It can even be said that the Sacrament of Confirmation exists to extend to the Church of every age and every place the Spirit given on the first Pentecost. By this sacrament we are conformed to Christ and in a special way we are in fact sealed with a permanent character as we become "temples of the Holy Spirit" (1 Cor. 6:19).

    By virtue of this sacrament, we are both deputed and strengthened to be witnesses to Christ. "Deputed", because we are configured to Christ, and more fully "strengthened", because through Confirmation we receive special gifts: wisdom, understanding, counsel, fortitude, knowledge, piety, and fear of the Lord. The fruits or rewards for using these gifts, as we know from Scripture (Galatians 5:22-23), are charity, joy, peace, patience, benignity, goodness modesty, contingency, and chastity.

    Throughout his lengthy pontificate, John Paul II emphasised the importance of a new evangelisation, one that is "new in ardour, methods and expression". We need to find a new courage and creativity in order to proclaim the Gospel of Jesus more effectively in our time. If our efforts in this regard are to resonate with what matters most to people in Australia, we need to imagine and create new ways to evangelise. For example, Benedict XVI suggests that "to evangelise means to show this path - to teach the art of living."

    At the beginning of his public ministry Jesus said: "I have come to bring the good news to the poor" (Luke 4:18); or, in other words, to evangelise.

    Writing in 2000, Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger (now Benedict XVI) explained Jesus' words as follows: "I have the response to your questions; I will show you the path of life, the path towards happiness. Indeed, I am the path" ( The New Evangelization: Building the Civilization of Love).

    When Jesus promised to send the Holy Spirit he did so in the context of St John's Gospel (20:19-23) which focuses on the forgiveness of sins. Hence the Spirit can only be possessed by those welcoming him in repentance, faith and love.

    Fr Dennis W. Byrnes is a priest of the Lismore Diocese, NSW.


              Catholic schools        
    Fr Brendan Dillon PP

    With reference to John Morrissey's article (June AD2000), he and your readers may be interested to know that the forum addressed by Bishop Peter Elliott was arranged by myself. I contacted the bishop because I had been told there were many parents allegedly forced into home schooling as a result of so-called widespread abuses in our schools on the part of some teachers - abuses that were inconsistent with Catholic doctrine and practice.

    With the generous response by Bishop Elliott, I was able to give parents an opportunity to be heard here at St Leonard's. I felt this was a matter of justice, even though I had some real doubts as to the extent of the problem.

    I did make a point later in the evening that home schooling had the disadvantage of depriving children of important social interaction, and, as John Morrissey records, I stressed the fact that children from solid Catholic families can give good example to those who come from uncommitted families in a school environment: Baptism calls all of us to do just this.

    But John then wrote in the next line: "Who can blame the passionate response from some home schoolers present, seeing the souls of their own children as their first concern?" That's fair enough. However, why would he not mention the fact that I challenged one of the "passionate" mothers with the question: "If the Catholic school near you had a reputation for being thoroughly orthodox, would you be prepared to send your child there?" Her answer was a flat "No."

    The invitation sent out emphasised that this was an opportunity for dialogue with the bishop "to discuss your concerns regarding the Catholic school system in Melbourne." It was never intended to be an evening to debate the merits of home schooling as against Catholic schools, but this mother - there may well have been others - had no interest in using a Catholic school no matter what steps Bishop Elliott may take to alleviate some of the concerns raised! I'm surprised John didn't see this as a significant moment in the evening's proceedings.

    With regard to Michael Gilchrist's article on the retirement of Bishop Morris as Bishop of Toowoomba June AD2000), it was not mentioned that Bishop Morris was denied the opportunity to read the report made by Archbishop Charles Chaput following his investigation, during which, according to Bishop Morris (who found him to be very friendly), the Archbishop wanted to (and did) spend more time observing the animals and wild life.

    How can it be claimed: "The report of that visitation led Rome to conclude the Bishop was indeed 'unfit for his job' and therefore needed to be removed." From what document is this being quoted? Has the writer of this article seen the Archbishop's report? Bishop Morris hasn't seen it. What is meant by "Rome"? Was it the Curia? For all we know Archbishop Chaput's report may not have recommended his removal at all.

    In prayer and doctrine the Catholic Church places a heavy emphasis on justice. According to his ABC Compass interview, Bishop Morris was told that "there is no process for bishops". That is a denial of natural justice, and a situation which destroys the Church's credibility in telling others to "get their house in order."

    The secular world looks on in disbelief at the fact that there is no process of justice for any bishop, in this case Bishop Morris. Even footballers, jockeys and trainers, rate-payers, etc, can get a hearing in the secular world.

    It was a desire to see justice being done that prompted me to ring Bishop Elliott to ensure that those parents would be heard! Let's pray that the Australian Bishops, when they visit the Pope later this year, are not all talk, but do in fact put up a courageous stand to insist that the Bishop still has a basic right to a "dialogue" on this matter, not the "monologue" he received some five years ago.

    FR BRENDAN DILLON PP
    Glen Waverley, Vic


              Bishop Conley on the new Missal translation: 'The very words of God'        
    Bishop James Conley

    The following is the edited text of an address given on 25 April 2011 by Auxiliary Bishop James Conley of Denver at the Midwest Theological Forum in Valparaiso, Indiana. It is reprinted here with Bishop Conley's permission.

    The "new Mass" is almost a half-century old now. A generation of Catholics has grown up knowing only the Novus Ordo. I would venture to bet that many younger Catholics have no idea that the prayers we say at Mass are translated from an authoritative Latin text.

    In Advent, we are going to introduce a major new English translation of the Mass with the third typical edition of the Roman Missal.

    What are Catholics in the pews going to make of the changes in the words they pray and the words they hear the priest praying? Will the changes make any difference in their experience of the Mass? In the way they worship? In the way they live their faith in the world?

    Those of us who are priests, and those preparing to be ordained - we are the keys to the success of this next phase in the Church's ongoing liturgical renewal.

    There is a banal, pedestrian quality to much of the language in our current liturgy. The weakness in the language gets in the way and prevents us from experiencing the sublime spiritual and doctrinal ideas woven into the fabric of the liturgy.

    The translators had well-meaning pastoral intentions. They wanted to make the liturgy intelligible and relevant to modern Catholics. To that end, they employed a translation principle they called "dynamic equivalence."

    In practice, this led them to produce an English translation that in many places is essentially a didactic paraphrase of the Latin. In the process, the language of our Eucharistic worship - so rich in scriptural allusion, poetic metaphor and rhythmic repetition - came to be flattened out and dumbed down.

    Archbishop Mark Coleridge of Canberra-Goulburn, Australia, has observed that our current translation "consistently bleaches out metaphor, which does scant justice to the highly metaphoric discourse" of the liturgy. He has pointed out serious theological difficulties with our current translations, including problems related to ecclesiology and the theology of grace.

    The key point here is that the words we pray matter. What we pray makes a difference in what we believe. Our prayer has implications for how we grasp the saving truths that are communicated to us through the liturgy.

    For instance, our current translation almost always favours abstract nouns to translate physical metaphors for God. If the Latin prayer refers to the "face" of God, "face" will be translated in abstract conceptual terms, such as "presence." References to God's "right hand" will be translated as God's "power." This word choice has deep theological implications.

    The point of the Son of God becoming flesh is that God now has a human face - the face of Jesus. Jesus is the image of the invisible God. Whoever sees him sees the Father. Yet if in our worship we speak of God only in abstract terms, then effectively we are undermining our faith in the Incarnation.

    Misunderstanding

    I think the root problem with the translations we have now is that the translators seriously misunderstood the nature of the divine liturgy. Our current translations treat the liturgy basically as a tool for doing catechesis. That's why our prayers so often sound utilitarian and didactic, often with a kind of lowest-common-denominator type of feel. That's because the translators were trying to make the "message" of the Mass accessible to the widest possible audience.

    But Christ did not give us the liturgy to be a message-delivery system. Of course, we pray what we believe, and what we pray shapes what we believe: lex orandi, lex credendi. But the liturgy is not meant to "teach" in the same way that a catechism teaches, or even in the same way that a homily teaches.

    On this point, the words of the great liturgical pioneer, Father Romano Guardini, are worth hearing again: "The liturgy wishes to teach, but not by means of an artificial system of aim-conscious educational influences. It simply creates an entire spiritual world in which the soul can live according to the requirements of its nature. ...

    "The liturgy creates a universe brimming with fruitful spiritual life, and allows the soul to wander about in it at will and to develop itself there. ...

    "The liturgy has no purpose, or at least, it cannot be considered from the standpoint of purpose. It is not a means which is adapted to attain a certain end - it is an end in itself."

    As Fr Guardini says, the liturgy aims to create a new world for believers to dwell in. A sanctified world where the dividing lines between the human and the divine are erased. Guardini's vision is beautiful: "The liturgy creates a universe brimming with fruitful spiritual life."

    The new translation of the Mass restores this sense of the liturgy as transcendent and transformative. It restores the sacramentality to our liturgical language. The new translation reflects the reality that our worship here joins in the worship of heaven.

    The new edition of the Missal seeks to restore the ancient sense of our participation in the cosmic liturgy.

    Yet we need to recognise that this experience of the heavenly liturgy has been lost since Vatican II. This loss is reflected - I'm tempted to say abetted - by our current translation. For the last 40 years we have erased this heavenly reference in the Communion Rite with our bland translation: "Happy are those who are called to his Supper."

    For years now, Pope Benedict XVI has been urging the Church to reclaim this appreciation of the cosmic liturgy, to reclaim our great liturgical patrimony.

    I want to underline these words of the Holy Father: "The essential matter of all Eucharistic liturgy is its participation in the heavenly liturgy. It is from thence that it necessarily derives its unity, its catholicity, and its universality."

    The essential matter of our Eucharist is its participation in the liturgy of heaven. In other words: that's what the Eucharist is all about. The Eucharist we celebrate on earth has its source in the heavenly liturgy. And the heavenly liturgy is the summit to which our Eucharistic celebration looks.

    Yet how many of our people in the pews - how many of our priests at the altar - feel that they are being lifted up to partake in the heavenly liturgy? This is why this new translation is so important.


              Defending the Catholic Church against ill-informed attacks        
    Fr John Flynn LC

    Anti-Catholicism might be the last acceptable prejudice in many Western societies today, but Canadian author and journalist Michael Coren isn't going to take this situation lying down.

    In his recently published book, Why Catholics Are Right (McClelland and Stewart), he examines a number of common criticisms of the Church and provides telling rebuttals.

    Coren, born into a secular family, with a Jewish father, became a Catholic in his mid-20s.

    Being Jewish has helped him in his career, he says, but as he explains in the book's introduction, his Catholic beliefs have caused two job losses and many closed doors in the media.

    Abuse scandal

    He commences with a topic that he said he didn't want to write about and which he should not have had to write, namely the clergy abuse scandal. He acknowledges the immense damage caused to many people as a result of the abuses, but also argues that some of the criticism has gone beyond what was justified.

    The abuse says nothing specific about Catholicism, Coren insists. Critics who are eager to prove that the abuse was linked to the structures or teachings of the Church ignore the fact that abuse by clergy occurs in other churches and religions at the same or even higher rates.

    As a result of the lessons learned from the abuse scandal the Catholic Church is now one of the safest places for a young person to be according to Coren. These events should rightly lead to a condemnation of the abuses, but not to a condemnation of the Church.

    Another chapter deals with historical events, such as the Crusades and the Inquisition. It's true that the Church did not always act in the best manner, he admits, but overall the Church was mostly ethically ahead of its time and a force for good.

    On the matter of the Crusades, Coren points out that the Holy Land was Christian and subsequently invaded by Muslims. It is wrong to consider the Crusades as some kind of imperialism or colonialism. Far from being an exercise in exploitation and reaping profits, many noble families were bankrupted by the expense of arming a knight and maintaining him and his retinue.

    Modern research has disproved the affirmation that many crusaders were the sons of poor families looking for plunder. In fact, they were often the cream of European chivalry. In the territories conquered by the Crusades the Muslim population could continue its normal life and there wasn't even any serious attempt to convert them to Christianity.

    What can we conclude about the Crusades, Coren asks.

    "They were not the proudest moment of Christian history but nor were they the childish caricature of modern Western guilt and certainly not that of contemporary Muslim paranoia."

    Turning to the Inquisition he observes that the underlying premise is that Catholics are nastier than anyone else and that only the Church could organise something like the Inquisition.

    This is simply ridiculous as for a start more men and women were slaughtered in a couple of weeks of the atheistic French Revolution than in a century of the Inquisition. There were also inquisitions in a number of Protestant nations, he notes, aimed particularly at those suspected of witchcraft.

    The purpose of the Inquisition was to combat doctrinal errors and heresies, with the aim of bringing people back to the Church. Torture did exist, but it was carried out mainly by secular authorities. The Inquisition used it no more and usually less than other judicial bodies of the time.

    Most of the criticism centres on the Spanish Inquisition. In an aside Coren wonders why so little attention is paid to the massacres and torture of many Catholics by Henry VIII and Queen Elizabeth I in England.

    It is true that in the early days the popes did support the Spanish Inquisition but it soon became an organ of the state and monarchy. After the final defeat of the Muslims in Spain a large number converted from Islam or Judaism to Catholicism.

    Many were genuine, but as it was politically and economically advantageous to be a Catholic some who converted were not genuine. This led to the investigations by the Inquisition about the situation of those who had converted.

    There were certainly abuses committed, Coren says, but while Spain might have been a flawed society it did not experience the bloody civil wars of religion that affected many other European countries. The Inquisition went mainly unnoticed until the mid-19th century when anti-Catholic writers used and distorted it to attack the Church.

    Wealth

    Another frequent criticism of the Church is about its wealth. "We're hit with the old regular that the Church is dripping with money while the rest of the world starves," Coren comments.

    Yes, there is a lot of wealth at the Vatican, in the museums that are open for all to visit. The Church has preserved these works of art for centuries and keeps them as a patrimony for humanity.

    Selling the artwork and giving away the money would just be a one-off event whose benefits would soon be over. Instead, the artistic treasures are kept for the future, available to all, instead of being locked away in private collections.

    Moreover, Coren adds, the Catholic Church builds and runs hospitals, schools and does an enormous amount of charitable work around the world.

    One of the chapters is dedicated to the subject of life and sexuality. The Church is often under attack for its stand on matters ranging from abortion to condoms and contraceptives. The position the Catholic Church takes in this area is not only based on moral beliefs but is also supported by science and human rights, Coren argues.

    The affirmation that a new life exists from the moment of conception has solid biological foundation with the fetus being a distinct human life and as such should having a right to exist. In spite of this, in recent years prolifers have often been depicted as extreme zealots.

    Moreover, while contemporary society considers itself to be more progressive and tolerant than at any time in the past, the disabled or handicapped in the womb are now deliberately targeted and killed.

    Stem cells

    When it comes to the Church's opposition to the use of embryonic stem cells for research, this is used by opponents to accuse it of being an obstacle to a cure for sicknesses and diseases that could be overcome in the very near future.

    The truth is, however, there have been no successful cures with embryonic stem cells, in contrast to the successes obtained with adult stem cells, which is supported by the Church, as Coren points out.

    On the subject of condoms and contraceptives the Church warned decades ago that their availability would be harmful to society. In fact, Coren says, since that warning there has been a steady rise in sexually transmitted diseases, divorce, family breakdown and sexuality has been downgraded from what should be a loving act into a mere exchange of bodily fluids.

    The vilification of the Church and Benedict XVI for being opposed to the use of condoms in the effort to control AIDS is yet another case of injustice, Coren notes. Relying on the use of condoms simply hasn't worked in Africa. Instead, programs based on abstinence and fidelity have had the greatest success.

    Coren's book deals with many other topics and he pulls no punches in defending the Church against what he considers ill-informed attacks. It should prove a useful aid for those interested in replying to the all too frequent swipes against the Catholic Church.


              The 10 Steps to Impeach a PresidentIt won’t be easy to impeach...        


    The 10 Steps to Impeach a President

    It won’t be easy to impeach Donald Trump. No president in American history has ever been convicted on articles of impeachment. 

    Only two presidents so far have been impeached by the House and had that impeachment go to the Senate for trial. The first was Andrew Johnson, in 1868, when the Senate came one vote short of convicting him. The next was 131 years later, in 1999, when Bill Clinton’s impeachment went to the Senate. 50 Senators voted to convict Clinton, 17 votes short of what was needed.

    What about Richard Nixon? He resigned early in this process, before the House had even voted on articles of impeachment. And then his successor, who had been his vice president, Gerald Ford, gave Nixon a full and unconditional pardon for any crimes he might have committed against the United States while president.

    This isn’t to say Trump couldn’t or won’t be impeached. Only that it’s a long and drawn-out process. 

    It all revolves around Article I Sections 2 and 3 of the Constitution, and rules in the House and the Senate implementing those provisions.

    Step 1. It starts in the House Judiciary Committee, when a majority of the member vote in favor of what’s called an “inquiry of impeachment” resolution.

    Step 2. That resolution goes to the full House of Representatives where a majority has to vote in favor. And then votes to authorize and fund a full investigation by the Judiciary Committee into whether sufficient grounds exist for impeachment.

    Step 3. The House Judiciary Committee investigates. That investigation doesn’t have to be from scratch. It can rely on data and conclusions of other investigations undertaken by, say, the FBI.

    Step 4: A majority of the Judiciary Committee members decides there are sufficient grounds for impeachment, and the Committee issues a “Resolution of Impeachment,” setting forth specific allegations of misconduct in one or more articles of impeachment.

    Step 5: The full House then considers that Resolution and votes in favor of it – as a whole or on each article separately. The full House isn’t bound by the Committee’s work. The House may vote to impeach even if the Committee doesn’t recommend impeachment.

    Step 6: The matter then goes to the Senate for a trial. The House’s Resolution of Impeachment becomes in effect the charges in this trial.

    Step 7: The Senate issues a summons to the president, who is now effectively the defendant, informing him of the charges and the date by which he has to answer them. If the president chooses not to answer or appear, it’s as if he entered a “not guilty” plea.

    Step 8 is the trial in the Senate. In that trial, those who are representing the House – that is, the prosecution – and counsel for the president, both make opening arguments. They then introduce evidence and put on witnesses as in any trial. Witnesses are subject to examination and cross-examination. The trial is presided over by the chief justice of the Supreme Court – who has the authority to rule on evidentiary questions or may put such questions to a vote of the Senate. The House managers and counsel for the president then make closing arguments.

    Step 9: The Senate meets in closed session to deliberate.

    Step 10: The Senate returns in open session to vote on whether to convict the president on the articles of impeachment. Conviction requires a two-thirds vote by the Senate. Conviction on one or more articles of impeachment results in removal from office. Such a conviction also disqualifies the now former president from holding any other public office. And it doesn’t bar additional legal proceedings against that former president, and punishment.

    So there you have it–the 10 steps that must all take place to impeach the president. 

    It may come in handy.


              THE CASE FOR OBSTRUCTION OF JUSTICEObstruction of justice was...        


    THE CASE FOR OBSTRUCTION OF JUSTICE

    Obstruction of justice was among the articles of impeachment drafted against both Presidents Nixon and Clinton. The parallel between Nixon and Trump is almost exact. White House tapes revealed Nixon giving instructions to pressure the acting FBI director into halting the Watergate investigation.

    Two weeks after Trump told Comey privately “I need loyalty. I expect loyalty,” he had another private meeting with Comey in the Oval Office. After shooing out his advisers – all of whom had top security clearance – Trump said to Comey, according to Comey’s memo written shortly after the meeting, “I hope you can see your way clear to letting this go, to letting Flynn go.”

    Then on May 9, Trump fired Comey. In a subsequent interview with NBC Trump said he planned to fire Comey “regardless of [the] recommendation” of the Attorney and Deputy Attorney General, partly because of “this Russia thing.” Trump also revealed in the interview that he had had several conversations with Comey about the Russia investigation, and had asked Comey if he was under investigation.

    The federal crime of obstruction of justice applies to “[w]hoever corruptly, or by threats or force, or by any threatening letter or communication influences, obstructs, or impedes or endeavors to influence, obstruct, or impede the due and proper administration of the law” in a proceeding or investigation by a government department or agency or Congress.

    As in Nixon’s case, a decision to support an “inquiry of impeachment” resolution in the House—to start an impeachment investigation—doesn’t depend on sufficient evidence to convict a person of obstruction of justice, but simply probable cause to believe a president may have obstructed justice.

    There’s already more than enough evidence of probable cause to begin that impeachment inquiry of Donald Trump.


              Justice League vs. Teen Titans (2016) 720p BRRip 700MB Ganool SRT        

    Ganool.info – Free Download Justice League vs. Teen Titans (2016) 720p BRRip 700MB include Subtitle Indonesian, English and released on 31 March 2016 | 7:16 am by Ganool.info. Release Date: 29 March 2016 IMDB : http://www.imdb.com/title/tt5091548 Genre: Animation, Action Stars: Stuart Allan, Jake T. Austin, Jon Bernthal Size:700MB Language: English Encoder: SHQ@Ganool Source: 1080p.BluRay.x264-ROVERS Subtitle: […]

    The post Justice League vs. Teen Titans (2016) 720p BRRip 700MB Ganool SRT appeared first on Ganool.


              Live Video Stream: Senate Confirmation Hearing of New FBI Director        
    Christopher Wray, President Trump’s nominee for FBI Director, faces the Senate Judiciary Committee on Wednesday for his confirmation hearing. Wray would replace James Comey , whom Trump fired in May. Wray served in the Justice Department under President George W. Bush and currently works on white-collar crime at an international law firm. Given Comey's dismissal and ongoing investigations into Russian interference in the U.S. election and potential ties to the Trump campaign, senators are expected to press Wray on his independence and integrity.
              Court Orders, Raleigh County, 1860/61        
    February Term 1860 Upon the petition of Hamilton Harper who desires a new road leading from the location of the state road down the middle fork of Sand Lick to intersect the Coal River and Marsh Road. It is ordered that James Mankin, Wm Vass & Hamilton Harper after being first sworn before a justice […]
              Maple Forest        




    Character Level: 37
    Profession Level: 36
    Achievement: Zadorak, Hoadremlin and Dimension Ruler


    Map Location:
    --------------------------
    Maple Forest

    Quest List:
    --------------------
    Another Threat
    Remove the Branches
    Sleep Disturbing Fairies - [Reward: 2 Red Potion (IV) and 2 Blue Potion (IV)]
    Too Sleepy to Talk Now, Talk Later
    Guard Who Looks Nervous
    Why You Did! - [Reward: 3 Wind Elixir]
    Reliable Mate
    My Old Friend Ralf
    Whose Order?! - [Reward: 3 Fairy Stone]
    The Diary of Investigators - [Reward: 4 Purple Potion (IV)]
    The Thing I Watched That Night
    Noisy Historic Site
    A Being From Another World - [Reward: Yggdrasil Leaf]
    A Hero of Justice Raindy
    The Thing to Maintain Dimensional Crack
    Save Time while Closing Dimensonal Crack - [Reward: Bear Embroidery IV and 4 Red Potion (IV)]
    Finding Traces of the Freyjanity - [Reward: 2 Wind Elixir and 2 Blue Potion (IV)]
    Time to Say Goodbye
    Let's Go to the Hill of Deadly Poision
    Evil Mandragora - [Reward: 2 Oridecon Powder]
    The King of Mandragoras - [Reward: 2 Fairy Stone and 2 Red Potion (IV)]
    Where is the Patient!
    Is it the Poison of Mandragora?
    Antidote Delivery
    No Effect?
    Is it You?
    Professional Herb Digger Slag
    Slag's Condition - [Reward: Screw Runehole Puncher and 4 Red Potion (IV)]
    Natural Enemy of the Herb Digger
    K.O. Grass Before Growing Flora
    To Jacob
    For the Poison, Use the Poison
    The Reason Why Dr. Jacob is Back - [Reward: Fairy Stone and 2 Blue Potion (IV)]
    The Person Who is Waiting in Maple Village - [Reward: 3 Wind Elixir]
    Investigating the Village
    Guard Commander Lance
    Guard Commander is Not Pleasant
    Traditonal Liquor Holic Lance
    Broken Liquor Barrel
    Chase Python - [Reward: Oridecon Powder and 4 Purple Potion (IV)]
    Brewin's Love for Python
    I Want to Eat Pumpkin Stew
    We Can Make Stew But Have No Ingredient - [Reward: Refining Whetstone IV and 2 Yggdrasil Leas]
    First Ingredients for Delicious Stew: Fresh Pumpkins
    Steal Pumpkins with the Owner's Consent - [Reward: 2 Red Potion (IV) and 2 Blue Potion (IV)]
    Pumpkins for Kate
    Mouses Who Ruined the Fields
    Mandragora's Needle
    Second Ingredients for Delicious Stew: Fresh Cheese
    Cheese Retake Operation
    Cheese for Kate - [Reward: 2 Red Potion (IV) and 2 Blue Potion (IV)]
    Kate's Special Pumkin Stew
    The Process For Brewing the Traditional Liquor (1) - [2 Wind Elixir and 2 Blue Potion (IV)]
    The Process For Brewing the Traditional Liquor (2) - [2 Wind Elixir and 2 Blue Potion (IV)]
    Monster Fascinated in Sweet Scent - [Reward: Dim Dexterity Rune]
    The Only Remaining Maple Extract - [Reward: Dragon Embroidery IV]
    Extract Delivery
    Got Traditional Liquor!
    Lance's Wait
    Alcohol Tells the Truth - [Reward: Convert Steel]
    A Woman Lost Husband
    Request from Sejanne
    A Mastis Attacing Bordo - [Reward: Tiger Embroidery IV and 2 Red Potion (IV)]
    Going to Historic Scene With Bordo
    Greet Later
    Help Via
    Dimensional Crack in a Place Like This - [Reward: Plated Gauntlets of Fissure]
    A Monster from Dimensional Crack - [Reward: Scaled Armguard of Fissure]
    Where is Bordo?
    Captured Villager
    Young Witness
    Looking for Trace
    Duel with Lance - [Reward: Oridecon Powder or Ernium Powder]
    Go to South Gateway!
    The Reason Why She Stayed
    Where is Freki? - [Reward: Dim Will Rune and 3 Blue Potion (IV)]
    A Way to Rescue the Captured Freki?
    Trainer Erine - [Reward: Plated Visor of Fissure]
    Merchant Fruit
    Attacked Carriage - [Reward: Scared Helm of Fissure]
    Bring Back Meat Box
    Thing That Reina Asked
    What's This Thing For? - [Reward: Breastplate of Fissure]
    Dr. Jacob's Elixir
    Bring Agitated Freki - [Reward: Items of Fissure]
    Blood Line of Freki
    Prince of the Wild Cannot be Raise by Human
    The Method to Awake Wild Instinct - [Reward: Tiger Embroidery IV or Dragon Embroidery IV]
    Red Scar's Blood
    Miss Lady! - [Reward: Refining Whetstone IV or Magic Oil IV]
    Close Defense Line - [Reward: 3 Red Potion (IV) and 3 Blue Potion (IV)]
    Final Resistance - [Reward: Screw Rune Hole Puncher]
    Dimensional Crack Wide Open - [Reward: Farmer Hat]
    Track Down Escaped Freyjanity
    Reunion with Guile
    Clearing Out the Vicinity of Laboratory - [Reward: Ernium Powder and 3 Blue Potion (IV)]
    Unseen Freyjan - [Reward: Dim Strength Rune and 3 Red Potion (IV)]
    Rackuf in Maple Village
    Weak Rackuf - [Reward: Dim Dexterity Rune]
    I'm Ashamed to Meet Master - [Reward: 2 Red Potion (IV) and 2 Blue Potion (IV)]
    Coward Beast Master - [Reward: Dim Intelligence Rune]
    Strong and Powerfull Heavy Grizzly
    Heckler of Excavation
    Man Who Can Cure a Poison
    Sweeping Gremlins from the Santuary
    Give My Hat Back
    Materials for the Thesis
    Capture Hostile Cockratice - [Reward: 3 Red Potion (IV) and 3 Blue Potion (IV)]
    [Dungeon] True Criminal - [Reward: Maple Foreest Weapon Statue]
    [Dungeon] Jacob's Research Log - [Reward: Maple Foreest Top Statue]
    Request from Mildross (1)
    Request from Mildross (2) - [Reward: 2 Yggdrasil Lead]
    Request: Kate's Pride
    Request: Carrots!
    Request: The Red Shadow Crossing Maple Forest

    Quest Starter Items Found:
    -----------------------------------------------
    None Yet

    Items Found:
    -----------------------
    Split Piece 1 [Bring to Irmumoa Aro2] - Fai, Magical Fai, Wild Fai, Country Mouse, Needle Mandragora, Mantis, Imperfect Goblin Fighter, High Pagan, Wise Cockratice
    Split Piece 2 [Bring to Irmumoa Aro2] - Fai, Magical Fai, Wild Fai, Flora
    Split Piece 3 [Bring to Irmumoa Aro2] - Fai, Wild Fai, Mantis, Wise Cockratice

    Materials Items:
    Earthly Trace (I) - Country Mouse, Minor Gremlin, Mantis, Warlike Cockratice
    Firmament Essence (I) - Flora, Emergency Ration, Needle Mandragora, Mantis
    Root of Life (I) - Wild Fai, High Elite Researcher
    Spirit of Ruin (I) - Flora, Raptured High Pagan
    Monster Fragment (I) - High Adamant Researcher

    Other Items:
    Abandoned Hood - Freyjan Beast Master
    Archaic Hood - Freyjan Venomer, Poisoner
    Cloth Pocket - Country Mouse, Wild Country Mouse
    Fire Ice - Vanaheim High Devil
    Gooey Liquid - Minor Gremlin, Gremlin
    Large Bear Paw - Little Grizzly, Grizzly, Heavy Grizzly
    Leaf - Flora
    Mastis Arm - Mantis, Giant Mantis
    Old Cheese - Emergency Ration
    Pesky Mask - Imperfect Goblin Fighter, Imperfect Goblin Warrior
    Pixie Wing - Fai, Magical Fai, Wild Fai
    Poison Fang - Python, Great Python, Critical Phyton
    Researcher's Button - Researcher, Adamant Researcher, Shoot Researcher, High Adamant Researcher, High Shoot Researcher, High Elite Researcher, Elite Researcher, High Recovery Researcher
    Ripped Scriptures - Raptures High Pagan, High Pagan
    Stinky Petal - Needle Mandragora
    Stone Powder - Cockratice, Wise Cockratice, Warlike Cockratice
    Tufred Bee Wing - Killer Bee

    Bags Found:
    ----------------------
    Small Bag - None
    Medium Bag - None Yet

    Food and Drinks Found:
    -------------------------------------------
    Instant Lettuce Geotjeori - Imperfect Goblin Warrior
    Instant Smoldering Heart Skewer - Gremlin, Shoot Researcher, Freyjan Beast Master
    Instant Smoldering Heart Soup - Gremlin, Critical Python, Mantis, Wise Cockratice
    Instant Smoldering Heart Steak - Fai, Country Mouse, Wild Country Mouse, Imperfect Goblin Warrior, Raptures High Pagan, High Recovery Researcher

    Potions Found:
    ---------------------------
    Red Potion (IV) - Researcher, High Adamant Researcher, Imperfect Goblin Fighter, High Pagan
    Blue Potion (IV) - Magical Fai, Minor Gremlin, Needle Mandragoram, Imperfect Goblin Warrior, High Pagan
    Purple Potion (IV) - Wild Fai, Needle Mandragora
    Health Boost Potion (IV) - Needle Mandragora, High Shoot Researcher, High Pagan
    Intelligence Boost Potion (IV) - Country Mouse
    Will Potion (IV) - Heavy Grizzly

    Cards Found:
    ------------------------
    Fai
    Gremlin
    Cockatrice

    Weapons and Armors Found:
    ----------------------------------------------------
    Desperate Chain Gauntlets - Ruler of Fury
    Desperate Plated Boots - Ruler of Fury
    Desperate Sword - Ruler of Fury
    Plated Boots of Silence - Magical Fai
    Plated Gauntlets of Silence - Magical Fai
    Scaled Chain Boots - High Shoot Researcher
    Scaled Shield - High Shoot Researcher
    Scout Dual Dagger - Minor Gremlin
    Sunset Plated Boots - Mantis

    Khara Quest:
    ------------------------
    Poison Investigators
    Destroyer of Maply Forest
    Way to Strengthen Equipment
    Two Bears in the House
    Mantis Martial-Arts Expert
    Go Crazy with Cheese
    Good Taste and Healthy
    Novice Weapon Smelter - [Reward: Title - Weapon Novice]
    Novice Armor Smelter - [Reward: Title - Armor Novice]
    Intermediate Weapon Smelter - [Reward: Title - Weapon Expert]
    Intermediate Armor Smelter - [Reward: Title - Armor Expert]
    Mass Production Fish Cake
    Health Food of Payon Forest
    Despisable Food of the Cracked Plain, Is it that Bad?
    Principle of Gathering No One Knows About
    Long Life Span Without Illness! Health is the Most Important
    Finding the Taste of Midgard
    Birth of a Great Table!
    (Rare:B) Hoadremlin (Party Recommended) - [Reward: Title - Hoadremlin Hunter]
    [Dungeon] Ruler of Vanaheim of Anger - [Reward: Title - Dimensional Ruler]
    [Dungeon] The Truth of the Immortal Experiment
    [Dungeon] Owner of the Secret Experiment at the Laboratory - [Reward: Title - Lab Professor]

    Others:
    -------------
    Small Silver Ore
    Medium Silver Ore
    Large Silver Ore

    Blacksmithing:
    --------------------------
    None Yet



              About Jackie Robinson        

    Who was Jackie Robinson?

     

    Jack Roosevelt "Jackie" Robinson (January 31, 1919 – October 24, 1972) was the first black Major League Baseball. Robinson broke the baseball color barrier when he signed with the Brooklyn Dodgers in 1947. As the first black man to play in the major leagues, (aside from the 1880s, before the MLB was organized) he is most known for bringing social justice to baseball, which had seperate leagues for blacks (the Negro leagues) and whites for six decades. His character and skills are what helped him challenge the traditional basis of segregation, which was prevalent in all areas of American Life, and was a catalyst to the Civil Rights Movement. Robinson was not just any other baseball player, he strived for success and achieved it, as he helped the Dodgers get to six World Series' and win it all in 1955. He was Rookie of the Year in 1947, MVP in 1949 and a six time All-Star from 1949-1954. He was then inducted to the Baseball Hall of Fame in Cooperstown in 1962 followed by all of MLB retiring the Jackie Robinson Jersey: number 42, in 1997, an honor reserved solely to Robinson. 

    Pre Baseball Life

    Jackie was born on January 31, 1919, in Cairo, Georgia, to a family of farmers during a Spanish flu and smallpox epidemic. He was the youngest of five children, after his brothers Edgar, Frank, Matthew, and Willa Mae. He was named "Roosevelt" as a middle name, in honor of former President Theodore Roosevelt, who died earier that month. The Robinson's moved to 121 Pepper Street in Pasadena, California after their father left them in 1920. Their mother worked various jobs to support them as they grew up in relative poverty even though Pasadena was considered an affluent place. They attended Washington Junior High School followed by Muir Tech High School. The Robinsons were superb athletes. Matthew was a silver medalist in the 1936 Olympics and he and Frank inspired Jackie to seriously pursue a career in sports. Jackie played on the Muir Tech football team as quarterback, basketball team as a guard, track team as a jumper, tennis team and baseball team as both a catcher and shortstop. In 1936, he won a Tennis Tournament and played in the Pomona baseball tournament all star team with fellow future Hall of Famers Ted Williams and Bob Lemon. 

    After High School, Jackie went on to Pasadena Junior College where he continued his involvement in sports. He also was elected to the Lancers, a local organization responsible for helping patrol school activities. In 1938, Jackie joined the All-Southland Junior College baseball team and was selected as that years MVP. He also received honors for his outstanding community service, even though he sometimes acted against those around him who seemed racist. While playing football for PJC, Jackie broke his ankle. A few days before Jackie's 19th birthday he was arrested for vocally disputing the arrest of a black friend of his. He quickly earned a reputation for being one who won't shy away from beligerrance in the face of racism.

    After graduating from PJC, Jackie's brother, Frank, was killed in a motorcycle accident which helped Jackie make a decision to move to L.A. where he could console Frank's family. Jackie decided to attend UCLA where he met is future wife, Rachel Isum, and won varsity letters in all the major sports. He won the 1940 NCAA Mens Outdoor Track and Field Championship in the Long Jump,jumping a whopping 24 Feet 10.5 Inches. Ironically, in that year, robinson batted .097 for the UCLA baseball squad. In 1941, he took a job with the NYA as an assistant athletic director, as it would have been impossible for him to get a job as a proffesional athlete due to the color barrier. Later that year he traveled to Hawaii where he had an opportunity to play for the racially mixed semi-pro Honolulu Bears' football team. After that season he would move back to L.A. to play for a local football team, not realizing that the US involvement in World War 2 would sidetrack him for a little while and end his short football career.

    Robinson was drafted to the Army in 1942 and was stationed in Fort Riley, Kansas. Throughout his 3 plus years in the Army, he was always treated as a subordinate by the White controlled military. He still managed to become a second lieutenant in 1943, and joined the Black Panthers Tank Battallion, the first Black tank unit to see combat in WWII. However, jackie was never in combat. After getting engaged to his College sweetheart, Rachel, he was sidelined after injuring the same ankle he hurt back in high school. He would finish his army service as a coach for army athletes until 1944 when he was discharged. While in the Army, Robinson made close ties with boxer, Joe Louis, as they helped each other struggle in the white dominated Army.

    In early 1945, after working some part time coaching jobs, Jackie received an offer from the Kansas City Monarchs to Play professional Baseball in the Negro Leagues. He signed a contract worth $400 a month as he played for the Monarchs for 1 Season. He played 47 games at shortstop batting .387. The Negro leagues were'nt for Jackie as he didn't like their unorganized style. Luckily he received a secret offer from the GM of the Brooklyn Dodgers, Branch Rickey, to come to NY and play for their Minor League team. They offered him $600 a month on the condition that he would be able to take abuse from other players for being the only black, but contain himself from fighting back. Jackie accepted, and immediately left the Monarchs for NYC where he would marry Rachel Isum, who was in NY studying to be a Nurse. Jackie would start with the Dodgers' AAA club in Daytona Beach, FL that next season.

    Baseball Career

    In 1946, Robinson arrived at Daytona Beach, Florida, for spring training with the Montreal Royals of the Class AAA International League (the designation of "AAA" for the highest level of minor league baseball was first used in the 1946 season). Robinson's presence was controversial in racially charged Florida. As he was not allowed to stay with his teammates at the team hotel, he lodged instead at the home of a local black politician. Since the Dodgers organization did not own a spring training facility (the Dodger-controlled spring training compound in Vero Beach known as "Dodgertown" did not open until spring 1948), scheduling was subject to the whim of area localities, several of which turned down any event involving Robinson or Johnny Wright, another black player whom Rickey had signed to the Dodgers' organization in January. In Sanford, Florida, the police chief threatened to cancel games if Robinson and Wright did not cease training activities there; as a result, Robinson was sent back to Daytona Beach. In Jacksonville, the stadium was padlocked shut without warning on game day, by order of the city's Parks and Public Property director. In DeLand, a scheduled day game was called off, ostensibly because of faulty electrical lighting.

    After much lobbying of local officials by Rickey himself, the Royals were allowed to host a game involving Robinson in Daytona Beach. Robinson made his Royals debut at Daytona Beach's City Island Ballpark on March 17, 1946, in an exhibition game against the team's parent club, the Dodgers. Robinson thus simultaneously became the first black player to openly play for a minor league team and against a major league team since the de facto baseball color line had been implemented in the 1880s. Later in spring training, after some less-than-stellar performances, Robinson was shifted from shortstop to second base, allowing him to make shorter throws to first base. Robinson's performance soon rebounded. On April 18, 1946, Roosevelt Stadium hosted the Jersey City Giants' season opener against the Montreal Royals, marking the professional debut of the Royals' Jackie Robinson. In his five trips to the plate, Robinson had four hits, including a three-run home run. He also scored four runs, drove in three, and stole two bases in the Royals' 14–1 victory. Robinson proceeded to lead the International League that season with a .349 batting average and .985 fielding percentage, and he was named the league's Most Valuable Player. Although he often faced hostility while on road trips (the Royals were forced to cancel a Southern exhibition tour, for example), the Montreal fan base enthusiastically supported Robinson. Whether fans supported or opposed it, Robinson's presence on the field was a boon to attendance; more than one million people went to games involving Robinson in 1946, an amazing figure by International League standards. In the fall of 1946, following the baseball season, Robinson returned home to California and briefly played professional basketball for the short-lived Los Angeles Red Devils.

    The following year, six days before the start of the 1947 season, the Dodgers called Robinson up to the major leagues. With Eddie Stanky entrenched at second base for the Dodgers, Robinson played his initial major league season as a first baseman. On April 15, 1947, Robinson made his major league debut at Ebbets Field before a crowd of 26,623 spectators, including more than 14,000 black patrons. Although he failed to get a base hit, the Dodgers won 5–3. Robinson became the first player since 1880 to openly break the major league baseball color line. Black fans began flocking to see the Dodgers when they came to town, abandoning their Negro league teams.

    Robinson's promotion met a generally positive, although mixed, reception among newspapers and white major league players. However, racial tension existed in the Dodger clubhouse. Some Dodger players insinuated they would sit out rather than play alongside Robinson. The brewing mutiny ended when Dodgers management took a stand for Robinson. Manager Leo Durocher informed the team, "I do not care if the guy is yellow or black, or if he has stripes like a fuckin' zebra. I'm the manager of this team, and I say he plays. What's more, I say he can make us all rich. And if any of you cannot use the money, I will see that you are all traded."

    Robinson was also derided by opposing teams. Some, notably the St. Louis Cardinals, threatened to strike if Robinson played. After the threat, National League President Ford Frick and Baseball Commissioner Happy Chandler let it be known that any striking players would be suspended. Robinson nonetheless became the target of rough physical play by opponents (particularly the Cardinals). At one time, he received a seven-inch gash in his leg. On April 22, 1947, during a game between the Dodgers and the Philadelphia Phillies, Phillies players called Robinson a "nigger" from their dugout and yelled that he should "go back to the cotton fields". Rickey later recalled that Phillies manager Ben Chapman "did more than anybody to unite the Dodgers. When he poured out that string of unconscionable abuse, he solidified and united thirty men."

    Robinson received significant encouragement from several major league players. Dodgers teammate Pee Wee Reese once came to Robinson's defense with the famous line, "You can hate a man for many reasons. Color is not one of them." In 1948, Reese put his arm around Robinson in response to fans who shouted racial slurs at Robinson before a game in Cincinnati. A statue by sculptor William Behrends, unveiled at KeySpan Park on November 1, 2005, commemorates this event by representing Reese with his arm around Robinson. Jewish baseball star Hank Greenberg, who had to deal with racial epithets during his career, also encouraged Robinson. After colliding with Robinson at first base on one occasion, Greenberg whispered a few words into Robinson's ear, which Robinson later characterized as "words of encouragement." Greenberg had advised him that the best way to combat the slurs from the opposing players was to beat them on the field.

    Robinson finished the season having played in 151 games for the Dodgers, with a batting average of .297, an on-base percentage of .383, and a .427 slugging percentage. He had 175 hits (scoring 125 runs) including 31 doubles, 5 triples, 12 home runs, driving in 48 runs for the year. Robinson led the league in sacrifice hits, with 28, and in stolen bases, with 29. His cumulative performance earned him the inaugural Major League Baseball Rookie of the Year Award (separate National and American League Rookie of the Year honors were not awarded until 1949).

    Following Stanky's trade to the Boston Braves in March 1948, Robinson took over second base, where he logged a .980 fielding percentage that year (second in the National League at the position, fractionally behind Stanky). Robinson had a batting average of .296 and 22 stolen bases for the season. In a 12–7 win against the St. Louis Cardinals on August 29, 1948, he hit for the cycle—a home run, a triple, a double, and a single in the same game. The Dodgers briefly moved into first place in the National League in late August 1948, but they ultimately finished third as the Braves went on to win the league title and lose to the Cleveland Indians in the World Series.

    Racial pressure on Robinson eased in 1948 as a number of other black players entered the major leagues. Larry Doby (who broke the color barrier in the American League on July 5, 1947) and Satchel Paige played for the Cleveland Indians, and the Dodgers had three other black players besides Robinson. In February 1948, he signed a $12,500 contract (equal to $120,914 today) with the Dodgers; while a significant amount, this was less than Robinson made in the off-season from a vaudeville tour, where he answered pre-set baseball questions, and a speaking tour of the South. Between the tours, he underwent surgery on his right ankle. Because of his off-season activities, Robinson reported to training camp 30 pounds (14 kg) overweight. He lost the weight during training camp, but dieting left him weak at the plate.

    In the spring of 1949, Robinson turned to Hall of Famer George Sisler, working as an advisor to the Dodgers, for batting help. At Sisler's suggestion, Robinson spent hours at a batting tee, learning to hit the ball to right field. Sisler taught Robinson to anticipate a fastball, on the theory that it is easier to subsequently adjust to a slower curveball. Robinson also noted that "Sisler showed me how to stop lunging, how to check my swing until the last fraction of a second". The tutelage helped Robinson raise his batting average from .296 in 1948 to .342 in 1949. In addition to his improved batting average, Robinson stole 37 bases that season, was second place in the league for both doubles and triples, and registered 124 runs batted in with 122 runs scored. For the performance Robinson earned the Most Valuable Player award for the National League. Baseball fans also voted Robinson as the starting second baseman for the 1949 All-Star Game—the first All-Star Game to include black players.

    That year, a song about Robinson by Buddy Johnson, "Did You See Jackie Robinson Hit That Ball?", reached number 13 on the charts; Count Basie recorded a famous version. Ultimately, the Dodgers won the National League pennant, but lost in five games to the New York Yankees in the 1949 World Series.

    Summer 1949 brought an unwanted distraction for Robinson. In July, he was called to testify before the United States House of Representatives' Committee on Un-American Activities (HUAC) concerning statements made that April by black athlete and actor Paul Robeson. Robinson was reluctant to testify, but he eventually agreed to do so, fearing it might negatively affect his career if he declined.

    In 1950, Robinson led the National League in double plays made by a second baseman with 133. His salary that year was the highest any Dodger had been paid to that point: $35,000 ($338,091 in 2012 dollars). He finished the year with 99 runs scored, a .328 batting average, and 12 stolen bases. The year saw the release of a film biography of Robinson's life, The Jackie Robinson Story, in which Robinson played himself, and actress Ruby Dee played Rachael "Rae" (Isum) Robinson. The project had been previously delayed when the film's producers refused to accede to demands of two Hollywood studios that the movie include scenes of Robinson being tutored in baseball by a white man. The New York Times wrote that Robinson, "doing that rare thing of playing himself in the picture's leading role, displays a calm assurance and composure that might be envied by many a Hollywood star."

    Robinson's Hollywood exploits, however, did not sit well with Dodgers co-owner Walter O'Malley, who referred to Robinson as "Rickey's prima donna". In late 1950, Rickey's contract as the Dodgers' team President expired. Weary of constant disagreements with O'Malley, and with no hope of being re-appointed as President of the Dodgers, Rickey cashed out his one-quarter financial interest in the team, leaving O'Malley in full control of the franchise. Rickey shortly thereafter became general manager of the Pittsburgh Pirates. Robinson was disappointed at the turn of events and wrote a sympathetic letter to Rickey, whom he considered a father figure, stating, "Regardless of what happens to me in the future, it all can be placed on what you have done and, believe me, I appreciate it."

    Before the 1951 season, O'Malley reportedly offered Robinson the job of manager of the Montreal Royals, effective at the end of Robinson's playing career. O'Malley was quoted in the Montreal Standard as saying, "Jackie told me that he would be both delighted and honored to tackle this managerial post"—although reports differed as to whether a position was ever formally offered.

    During the 1951 season, Robinson led the National League in double plays made by a second baseman for the second year in a row, with 137. He also kept the Dodgers in contention for the 1951 pennant. During the last game of the season, in the 13th inning, he had a hit to tie the game, and then won the game with a home run in the 14th. This forced a playoff against the New York Giants, which the Dodgers lost.

    Despite Robinson's regular-season heroics, the Dodgers lost the pennant on Bobby Thomson's famous home run, known as the Shot Heard 'Round the World, on October 3, 1951. Overcoming his dejection, Robinson dutifully observed Thomson's feet to ensure he touched all the bases. Dodgers sportscaster Vin Scully later noted that the incident showed "how much of a competitor Robinson was." He finished the season with 106 runs scored, a batting average of .335, and 25 stolen bases.

    Robinson had what was an average year for him in 1952. He finished the year with 104 runs, a .308 batting average, and 24 stolen bases. He did, however, record a career-high on-base percentage of .436. The Dodgers improved on their performance from the year before, winning the National League pennant before losing the 1952 World Series to the New York Yankees in seven games. That year, on the television show Youth Wants to Know, Robinson challenged the Yankees' general manager, George Weiss, on the racial record of his team, which had yet to sign a black player. Sportswriter Dick Young, whom Robinson had described as a "bigot", said, "If there was one flaw in Jackie, it was the common one. He believed that everything unpleasant that happened to him happened because of his blackness." The 1952 season was the last year Robinson was an everyday starter at second base. Afterward, Robinson played variously at first, second, and third bases, shortstop, and in the outfield, with Jim Gilliam, another black player, taking over everyday second base duties. Robinson's interests began to shift toward the prospect of managing a major league team. He had hoped to gain experience by managing in the Puerto Rican Winter League, but according to the New York Post, Commissioner Happy Chandler denied the request.

    In 1953, Robinson had 109 runs, a .329 batting average, and 17 steals, leading the Dodgers to another National League pennant (and another World Series loss to the Yankees, this time in six games). Robinson's continued success spawned a string of death threats. He was not dissuaded, however, from addressing racial issues publicly. That year, he served as editor for Our Sports magazine, a periodical focusing on Negro sports issues; contributions to the magazine included an article on golf course segregation by Robinson's old friend Joe Louis. Robinson also openly criticized segregated hotels and restaurants that served the Dodger organization; a number of these establishments integrated as a result, including the five-star Chase Park Hotel in St. Louis.

    In 1954, Robinson had 62 runs, a .311 batting average, and 7 steals. His best day at the plate was on June 17, when he hit two home runs and two doubles. The following autumn, Robinson won his only championship when the Dodgers beat the New York Yankees in the 1955 World Series. Although the team enjoyed ultimate success, 1955 was the worst year of Robinson's individual career. He hit .256 and stole only 12 bases. The Dodgers tried Robinson in the outfield and as a third baseman, both because of his diminishing abilities and because Gilliam was established at second base. Robinson, then 37 years old, missed 49 games and did not play in Game 7 of the World Series. Robinson missed the game because manager Walter Alston decided to play Gilliam at second and Don Hoak at third base. That season, the Dodgers' Don Newcombe became the first black major league pitcher to win twenty games in a year.

    In 1956, Robinson had 61 runs, a .275 batting average, and 12 steals. By then, he had begun to exhibit the effects of diabetes, and to lose interest in the prospect of playing or managing professional baseball. After the season, Robinson was traded by the Dodgers to the arch-rival New York Giants for Dick Littlefield and $35,000 cash (equal to $299,192 today). The trade, however, was never completed; unbeknownst to the Dodgers, Robinson had already agreed with the president of Chock full o'Nuts to quit baseball and become an executive with the company. Since Robinson had sold exclusive rights to any retirement story to Look magazine two years previously,[165&91; his retirement decision was revealed through the magazine, instead of through the Dodgers organization.

    Legacy

    Robinson's major league debut brought an end to approximately sixty years of segregation in professional baseball, known as the baseball color line. After World War II, several other forces were also leading the country toward increased equality for blacks, including their accelerated migration of to the North, where their political clout grew, and President Harry Truman's desegregation of the military in 1948. Robinson's breaking of the baseball color line and his professional success symbolized these broader changes and demonstrated that the fight for equality was more than simply a political matter. Martin Luther King, Jr. said that he was "a legend and a symbol in his own time", and that he "challenged the dark skies of intolerance and frustration." According to historian Doris Kearns Goodwin, Robinson's "efforts were a monumental step in the civil-rights revolution in America ... [His&91; accomplishments allowed black and white Americans to be more respectful and open to one another and more appreciative of everyone's abilities."

    Beginning his major league career at the relatively advanced age of twenty-eight, he played only ten seasons, all of them for the Brooklyn Dodgers. During his career, the Dodgers played in six World Series, and Robinson himself played in six All-Star Games. In 1999, he was posthumously named to the Major League Baseball All-Century Team.

    Robinson's career is generally considered to mark the beginning of the post–"long ball" era in baseball, in which a reliance on raw power-hitting gave way to balanced offensive strategies that used footspeed to create runs through aggressive baserunning. Robinson exhibited the combination of hitting ability and speed which exemplified the new era. He scored more than 100 runs in six of his ten seasons (averaging more than 110 runs from 1947 to 1953), had a .311 career batting average, a .409 career on-base percentage, a .474 slugging percentage, and substantially more walks than strikeouts (740 to 291). Robinson was one of only two players during the span of 1947–56 to accumulate at least 125 steals while registering a slugging percentage over .425 (Minnie Miñoso was the other). He accumulated 197 stolen bases in total, including 19 steals of home. None of the latter were double steals (in which a player stealing home is assisted by a player stealing another base at the same time). Robinson has been referred to by author David Falkner as "the father of modern base-stealing."

    "I'm not concerned with your liking or disliking me ... all I ask is that you respect me as a human being." —Robinson, on his legacy

     

    Historical statistical analysis indicates Robinson was an outstanding fielder throughout his ten years in the major leagues and at virtually every position he played. After playing his rookie season at first base, Robinson spent most of his career as a second baseman. He led the league in fielding among second basemen in 1950 and 1951. Toward the end of his career, he played about 2,000 innings at third base and about 1,175 innings in the outfield, excelling at both.

    Assessing himself, Robinson said, "I'm not concerned with your liking or disliking me ... all I ask is that you respect me as a human being." Regarding Robinson's qualities on the field, Leo Durocher said, "Ya want a guy that comes to play. This guy didn't just come to play. He come to beat ya. He come to stuff the goddamn bat right up your ass."

    Post-baseball life

    Robinson as ABC sports announcer in 1965

    Robinson retired from baseball on January 5, 1957. Later that year, after he complained of numerous physical ailments, his doctors diagnosed Robinson with diabetes, a disease that also affected his brothers. Although Robinson adopted an insulin injection regimen, the state of medicine at the time could not prevent continued deterioration of Robinson's physical condition from the disease.

    In his first year of eligibility for the Baseball Hall of Fame in 1962, Robinson encouraged voters to consider only his on-field qualifications, rather than his cultural impact on the game. He was elected on the first ballot, becoming the first black player inducted into the Cooperstown museum.

    In 1965, Robinson served as an analyst for ABC's Major League Baseball Game of the Week telecasts, the first black person to do so. In 1966, Robinson was hired as general manager for the short-lived Brooklyn Dodgers of the Continental Football League. In 1972, he served as a part-time commentator on Montreal Expos telecasts.

    On June 4, 1972, the Dodgers retired his uniform number, 42, alongside those of Roy Campanella (39) and Sandy Koufax (32). From 1957 to 1964, Robinson was the vice president for personnel at Chock full o'Nuts; he was the first black person to serve as vice president of a major American corporation. Robinson always considered his business career as advancing the cause of black people in commerce and industry. Robinson also chaired the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People's (NAACP) million-dollar Freedom Fund Drive in 1957, and served on the organization's board until 1967. In 1964, he helped found, with Harlem businessman Dunbar McLaurin, Freedom National Bank—a black-owned and operated commercial bank based in Harlem. He also served as the bank's first Chairman of the Board. In 1970, Robinson established the Jackie Robinson Construction Company to build housing for low-income families.

    Robinson was active in politics throughout his post-baseball life. He identified himself as a political independent although he held conservative opinions on several issues, including the Vietnam War (he once wrote Martin Luther King, Jr. to defend the Johnson Administration's military policy). After supporting Richard Nixon in his 1960 presidential race against John F. Kennedy, Robinson later praised Kennedy effusively for his stance on civil rights. Robinson was angered by conservative Republican opposition to the Civil Rights Act of 1964. He became one of six national directors for Nelson Rockefeller's unsuccessful campaign to be nominated as the Republican candidate for the 1964 presidential election. After the party nominated Senator Barry Goldwater of Arizona instead, Robinson left the party's convention commenting that he now had "a better understanding of how it must have felt to be a Jew in Hitler's Germany". He later became special assistant for community affairs when Rockefeller was re-elected governor of New York in 1966. Switching his allegiance to the Democrats, he subsequently supported Hubert Humphrey against Nixon in 1968.

    Protesting the major leagues' ongoing lack of minority managers and central office personnel, Robinson turned down an invitation to appear in an old-timers' game at Yankee Stadium in 1969. He made his final public appearance on October 15, 1972, throwing the ceremonial first pitch before Game 2 of the World Series. He gratefully accepted a plaque honoring the twenty-fifth anniversary of his MLB debut, but also commented, "I'm going to be tremendously more pleased and more proud when I look at that third base coaching line one day and see a black face managing in baseball." This wish was fulfilled only after Robinson's death: following the 1974 season, the Cleveland Indians gave their managerial post to Frank Robinson (no relation), a Hall of Fame-bound player who would go on to manage three other teams. Despite the success of these two Robinsons and other black players, the number of African-American players in Major League Baseball has declined since the 1970s.

    Family life and death

    After Robinson's retirement from baseball, his wife, Rachel Robinson, pursued a career in academic nursing—she became an assistant professor at the Yale School of Nursing and director of nursing at the Connecticut Mental Health Center. She also served on the board of the Freedom National Bank until it closed in 1990. She and Jackie had three children: Jackie Robinson Jr. (born November 18, 1946), Sharon Robinson (born January 13, 1950), and David Robinson (born May 14, 1952).

    Robinson's eldest son, Jackie Robinson Jr., had emotional trouble during his childhood and entered special education at an early age. He enrolled in the Army in search of a disciplined environment, served in the Vietnam War, and was wounded in action on November 19, 1965. After his discharge, he struggled with drug problems. Robinson Jr. eventually completed the treatment program at Daytop Village in Seymour, Connecticut, and became a counselor at the institution. On June 17, 1971, at the age of 24, he was killed in an automobile accident. The experience with his son's drug addiction turned Robinson, Sr. into an avid anti-drug crusader toward the end of his life.

    Robinson did not long outlive his son. Complications of heart disease and diabetes weakened Robinson and made him almost blind by middle age. On October 24, 1972, he died of a heart attack at home in Stamford, Connecticut, aged fifty-three. Robinson's funeral service on October 27, 1972, at New York City's Riverside Church attracted 2,500 admirers. Many of his former teammates and other famous black baseball players served as pallbearers, and the Rev. Jesse Jackson gave the eulogy. Tens of thousands of people lined the subsequent procession route to Robinson's interment site at Cypress Hills Cemetery in Brooklyn, New York, where he is buried next to his son Jackie and mother-in-law Zellee Isum. Jackie Robinson Parkway also runs through the cemetery.

    After Robinson's death, his widow founded the Jackie Robinson Foundation, of which she remains an officer as of 2009. On April 15, 2008, she announced that in 2010 the foundation will be opening a museum devoted to Jackie in Lower Manhattan. Robinson's daughter, Sharon, became a midwife, educator, director of educational programming for MLB, and the author of two books about her father. His youngest son, David, who has ten children, is a coffee grower and social activist in Tanzania.

    Awards and recognition

    According to a poll conducted in 1947, Robinson was the second most popular man in the country, behind Bing Crosby. In 1999, he was named by Time on its list of the 100 most influential people of the 20th century. Also in 1999, he ranked number 44 on the Sporting News list of Baseball's 100 Greatest Players and was elected to the Major League Baseball All-Century Team as the top vote-getter among second basemen. Baseball writer Bill James, in The New Bill James Historical Baseball Abstract, ranked Robinson as the 32nd greatest player of all time strictly on the basis of his performance on the field, noting that he was one of the top players in the league throughout his career. Robinson was among the 25 charter members of UCLA’s Athletics Hall of Fame in 1984. In 2002, Molefi Kete Asante included Robinson on his list of 100 Greatest African Americans. Robinson has also been honored by the United States Postal Service on three separate postage stamps, in 1982, 1999, and 2000.

    The City of Pasadena has recognized Robinson in several ways. Brookside Park, situated next to the Rose Bowl, features a baseball diamond and stadium named Jackie Robinson Field. The city's Human Services Department operates the Jackie Robinson Center, a community outreach center that provides early diabetes detection and other services. In 1997, a $325,000 bronze sculpture (equal to $470,522 today) by artists Ralph Helmick, Stu Schecter, and John Outterbridge depicting oversized nine-foot busts of Robinson and his brother Mack was erected at Garfield Avenue, across from the main entrance of Pasadena City Hall; a granite footprint lists multiple donors to the commission project, which was organized by the Robinson Memorial Foundation and supported by members of the Robinson family.

    Major League Baseball has honored Robinson many times since his death. In 1987, both the National and American League Rookie of the Year Awards were renamed the "Jackie Robinson Award" in honor of the first recipient (Robinson's Major League Rookie of the Year Award in 1947 encompassed both leagues). On April 15, 1997, Robinson's jersey number, 42, was retired throughout Major League Baseball, the first time any jersey number had been retired throughout one of the four major American sports leagues.

    As an exception to the retired-number policy, MLB has recently begun honoring Robinson by allowing players to wear number 42 on April 15, Jackie Robinson Day. For the 60th anniversary of Robinson's major league debut, MLB invited players to wear the number 42 on Jackie Robinson Day in 2007. The gesture was originally the idea of outfielder Ken Griffey, Jr., who sought Rachel Robinson's permission to wear the number. After receiving her permission, Commissioner Bud Selig not only allowed Griffey to wear the number, but also extended an invitation to all major league teams to do the same. Ultimately, more than 200 players wore number 42, including the entire rosters of the Los Angeles Dodgers, New York Mets, Houston Astros, Philadelphia Phillies, St. Louis Cardinals, Milwaukee Brewers, and Pittsburgh Pirates. The tribute was continued in 2008, when, during games on April 15, all members of the Mets, Cardinals, Washington Nationals, and Tampa Bay Rays wore Robinson's number 42. On June 25, 2008, MLB installed a new plaque for Robinson at the Baseball Hall of Fame commemorating his off-the-field impact on the game as well as his playing statistics. In 2009, all uniformed personnel (players, managers, coaches, and umpires) wore number 42 on April 15.

    At the November 2006 groundbreaking for a new ballpark for the New York Mets, Citi Field, it was announced that the main entrance, modeled on the one in Brooklyn's old Ebbets Field, would be called the Jackie Robinson Rotunda. The rotunda was dedicated at the opening of Citi Field on April 16, 2009. It honors Robinson with large quotations spanning the inner curve of the facade and features a large freestanding statue of his number, 42, which has become an attraction in itself. Mets owner Fred Wilpon announced that, in conjunction with Citigroup and the Jackie Robinson Foundation, the Mets will create a Jackie Robinson Museum and Learning Center, located at the headquarters of the Jackie Robinson Foundation at One Hudson Square in lower Manhattan. The main purpose of the museum will be to fund scholarships for "young people who live by and embody Jackie's ideals."

    Since 2004, the Aflac National High School Baseball Player of the Year has been presented the "Jackie Robinson Award".

    Robinson has also been recognized outside of baseball. In December 1956, the NAACP recognized him with the Spingarn Medal, which it awards annually for the highest achievement by an African-American. President Ronald Reagan posthumously awarded Robinson the Presidential Medal of Freedom on March 26, 1984, and on March 2, 2005, President George W. Bush gave Robinson's widow the Congressional Gold Medal, the highest civilian award bestowed by Congress; Robinson was only the second baseball player to receive the award, after Roberto Clemente. On August 20, 2007, California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger and his wife, Maria Shriver, announced that Robinson was inducted into the California Hall of Fame, located at The California Museum for History, Women and the Arts in Sacramento.

    A number of buildings have been named in Robinson's honor. The UCLA Bruins baseball team plays in Jackie Robinson Stadium, which, because of the efforts of Jackie's brother Mack, features a memorial statue of Robinson by sculptor Richard H. Ellis. City Island Ballpark in Daytona Beach, Florida—the baseball field that became the Dodgers' de facto spring training site in 1947—was renamed Jackie Robinson Ballpark in 1989. A number of facilities at Pasadena City College (successor to PJC) are named in Robinson's honor, including Robinson Field, a football/soccer/track facility named jointly for Robinson and his brother Mack. The New York Public School system has named a middle school after Robinson, and Dorsey High School plays at a Los Angeles football stadium named after him. In 1976, his home in Brooklyn, the Jackie Robinson House, was declared a National Historic Landmark. Robinson also has an asteroid named after him, 4319 Jackierobinson. In 1997, the United States Mint issued a Jackie Robinson commemorative silver dollar, and five dollar gold coin. That same year, New York City renamed the Interboro Parkway in his honor.

    In 2011, the U.S. placed a plaque at Robinson's Montreal home to honor the ending of segregation in baseball. The home is located at 8232 avenue de Gaspe south of rue de Guizot Est and near Jarry Park and close to Delorimier Stadium, where Robinson played for the Montreal Royals during 1946. In a letter read during the ceremony, Rachel Robinson, Jackie's widow, wrote: "I remember Montreal and that house very well and have always had warm feeling for that great city. Before Jack and I moved to Montreal, we had just been through some very rough treatment in the racially biased South during spring training in Florida. In the end, Montreal was the perfect place for him to get his start. We never had a threatening or unpleasant experience there. The people were so welcoming and saw Jack as a player and as a man."

    Career statistics

    YearTeamGABRH2B3BHRRBISBCSBBSOAVGOBPSLGTBSHSFIBBHBPGDPE
    1945 Kansas City 47 163 36 63 14 4 5 23 13       .387                  
    1946 Montreal 124 444 113 155 25 8 3 66 40   92 27 .349                 10
    1947 Brooklyn 151 590 125 175 31 5 12 48 29   74 36 .297 .383 .427 252 28     9 5 16
    1948 Brooklyn 147 574 108 170 38 8 12 85 22   57 37 .296 .367 .453 260 8     7 7 15
    1949 Brooklyn 156 593 122 203 38 12 16 124 37   86 27 .342 .432 .528 313 17     8 22 16
    1950 Brooklyn 144 518 99 170 39 4 14 81 12   80 24 .328 .423 .500 259 10     5 11 11
    1951 Brooklyn 153 548 106 185 33 7 19 88 25 8 79 27 .338 .429 .527 289 6     9 10 7
    1952 Brooklyn 149 510 104 157 17 3 19 75 24 7 106 40 .308 .440 .465 237 6     14 16 20
    1953 Brooklyn 136 484 109 159 34 7 12 95 17 4 74 30 .329 .425 .502 243 9     7 12 6
    1954 Brooklyn 124 386 62 120 22 4 15 59 7 3 63 20 .311 .413 .505 195 5 4a   7 13 7
    1955 Brooklyn 105 317 51 81 6 2 8 36 12 3 61 18 .256 .378 .363 115 6 3 5b 3 8 10
    1956 Brooklyn 117 357 61 98 15 2 10 43 12 5 60 32 .275 .382 .412 147 9 2 2 3 9 9
    TotalsBrooklyn13824877947151827354137734197 740291.311.409.47423101049772113107
     Career155354941096173634267161867248   .316    97   

    a The sacrifice fly (SF) as a unique statistical category did not exist in Major League Baseball from 1940 through 1953. Any pre-1954 sacrifice flies by Robinson would be reflected in the sacrifice hit (SH) category.

    b Likewise, the intentional walk (IBB) category only became a unique statistic beginning in 1955. Any intentional walks issued to Robinson before that year would be reflected in the walk (BB) category.

     


              In new threat, Trump demands NKorea 'get their act together'        
    ADDS TRANSLATION OF SIGN - Tens of thousands of North Koreans gather for a rally at Kim Il Sung Square carrying placards and propaganda slogans as a show of support for their rejection of the United Nations' latest round of sanctions on Wednesday Aug. 9, 2017, in Pyongyang, North Korea. Propaganda poster at center says,

    North Korea details plan to fire missile salvo toward Guam


              Happy Valentines Day        


    If I could speak in any
    language in heaven or
    on earth but didn't love
    others, I would only be
    making meaningless noise
    like a loud gong or a
    clanging cymbal. If I
    had the gift of prophecy,
    and if I knew all the
    mysteries of the future
    and knew everything
    about everything, but
    didn't love others, what
    good would I be? And

    http://www.kateconnick.com/postcards/valentinesdogs2.jpg

    if I had the gift of faith
    so that I could speak
    to a mountain and make
    it move, without love
    I would be no good to
    anybody. If I gave
    everything I have to
    the poor and even
    sacrificed my body,
    I could boast about it;
    but if I didn't love others,
    I would be of no value



    whatsoever. Love is
    patient and kind. Love
    is not jealous or boastful
    or proud or rude. Love
    does not demand its
    own way. Love is not
    irritable, and it keeps
    no record of when it
    has been wronged.
    It is never glad about
    injustice but rejoices
    whenever the truth
    wins out. Love never
    gives up, never loses
    faith, is always hopeful,
    and endures through
    every circumstance.

    May You Always
    Experience This
    Kind Of Love,
    Dr. Howdy


                      


    Tomorrow is Labor Day.  Boy, we have labored at DeCocco Design this year!  Lots of great design projects, working with wonderful clients who wanted to see big changes in their homes.   Dreamy stuff.  At the same time we've been working to get the new website up and running to be able to launch the online Drapes collection.  The picture above is my laptop keyboard.  You can see that the letters are wearing off.  There are also keys that are hanging on for dear life and a collection of cookie crumbs.  It's quite a sight.  But all the work is about to pay off, as the website is scheduled to make it's debut tomorrow.  On Labor Day.  Poetic justice, for sure.  I thought we would launch on April Fools Day and I thought that would be appropriate.  Ha.  Tell God your plans and watch Her laugh.

    Today I'm very antsy about the new site, so I took myself off to Macy's to buy a new handbag.  Nothing fancy--I'm as hard on handbags as I am on laptop keyboards.  I replaced the old black bag with a new black bag.  Every time I buy a different color bag, I regret it.  Here's a pic of the new handbag:


    Looks a lot like the keyboard, doesn't it?  Has lots of nice pockets to stash a variety of supplies.  Big sale at Macy's today.  Isn't there a big sale at Macy's every day?  Hmmm, I can't leave you with these dark and rather dreary pictures.  Let me see what else I can dig up....




    Oh yeah!  The Beautyberry is in bloom.  Such a pretty plant.  And, even though the deer have obliterated my sweet patch of Black Eyed Susans, a couple showed up in a new spot:




    And when our son, Chris,  was visiting a week ago, he  helped me plant a Fall garden.  Very small, but all that I can handle right now.  There will be several kinds of lettuces, spinach, peas and swiss chard.  Chris is a  great gardener.  Things are sprouting already!  I'll get some pics for you.  I want you to know that you don't have to be neat and tidy and all Martha Stewart-ish to have a garden (I love Martha, but I cannot BE Martha-like).

    We'll talk again tomorrow.

    Ciao,
    Anne


              Showalter Middle School 8th grader wins Holocaust Center for Humanity contest        
    Eighth-grader Jordyn Famimiko of Showalter Middle School was recently awarded first place in the middle-school essay category of the Holocaust Center for Humanity’s 2017 Writing, Art, & Film Contest. Jordyn’s piece, entitled “My Reflection,” is a stirring call to protest injustice. She will be honored in a community reception on July 16, taking place at […]
              State of the Industry: Looking ahead to 2014        
    Expanding access to FBI database, school security loom large for 2014
    12/18/2013
    Leif Kothe

    IRVING, Texas—The past year on Capitol Hill will be remembered for legislative inaction and partisan rifts so deep they culminated in a 16-day government shutdown. Time will tell if the inertia and division will persist in 2014, but the fact that it’s an election year promises to make things a little hectic for the security industry, John Chwat, director of government relations for ESA, told Security Systems News. 

    So what’s on the agenda in the face of the midterm turbulence? Chwat says the ESA will focus on four main priorities in 2014. 

    FBI Database Access

    It’s no secret that, from a legal standpoint, alarm companies enjoy the fact that a properly written contract produced by a qualified attorney generally ensures they end up on the right side of a court decision. Those in the industry are increasingly becoming aware that it’s in their best interest to avail themselves of an alarm attorney who knows the ins and outs of limiting liability and writing enforceable exculpatory clauses.

    It’s precisely the industry’s wariness of being exposed to litigation that underpins the ESA’s top priority in 2014, which is to get the Senate Judiciary Committee and House Judiciary Committee to pass a bill that would permit security companies in every state to access the FBI federal database. This, Chwat said, helps companies get a criminal background check on prospective employees, thereby limiting the legal risk they might absorb when, unbeknownst to them, they hire a convicted felon. 

    Passage of the bill, Chwat says, will “allow us to begin negotiation with the Justice Department to develop regulations to permit us access.”

    Right now, companies in about half the states do not have access to these federal records. The bill’s provisions were previously intertwined with the far more polarizing issue of gun control legislation, which gained traction after the shootings at the Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Conn. in Dec. 2012. The industry’s concerns are “distinct” from the gun control measures, Chwat says, and it is his hope that the bill will be passed once the industry’s specific requests for open access are unencumbered by the political baggage of gun control.

    At the ground level, the bill could have a substantial impact for companies in states that currently don’t have access to the database, Chwat says. “Then we can say members have vetted and done due diligence on all employees,” he said. 

    School Security

    Protecting schools is a topic that’s intensified at both the state and federal levels since the Newtown shootings in Dec. 2012. ESA is engaged with SIA in a joint effort to “secure federal support for school districts, through either a grant program or through funding directly,” Chwat said, to help them acquire certain types of security systems for elementary and secondary schools, including “monitoring, panic bars, door hardware, electronic security systems and CCTV.”

    Chwat conceded that limited funds might impede the progress of the initiative, but added that school security is going to remain a charged topic in 2014, and the joint effort with SIA could bear fruit. “We think we’ll be able to achieve something there,” he said. 

    Surveillance and Elder Abuse

    In 2014, Congress is set to vote on a 1,000-page bill, called the Older Americans Act Reauthorization bill. One major provision of that bill, Chwat said, pertains to elder abuse—an issue on which ESA has been on the forefront, and which Chwat himself has sought to amend. The amended provision would give relatives of nursing home patients the option to have CCTV systems installed in rooms. 

    “Surveillance is used in preventing child abuse and crime, so preventing elder abuse and nursing home abuse has become a hot topic,” Chwat said. 

    There’s a fair amount of momentum developing with the issue. In 2013, Oklahoma and Virginia passed laws similar to what ESA is proposing on a national level, Chwat said. Texas, New Mexico, New Jersey and New York all have pending legislation on the matter as well, he added.  

    Fire Legislation

    A pair of more “esoteric” bills concerning sprinkler installation is slated to be introduced in the coming year, Chwat said. Both pieces of tax-based legislation that could impact installers, the bills have garnered the attention of the ESA. 

    The first bill would provide tax expensing for the installation of sprinklers, while the second would offer a tax credit of up to $50,000 for the installation of sprinkler systems in historic landmarks. Chwat said the ESA has been in close interaction with the House tax writing committee, endorsing the organization’s longstanding belief that some semblance of balance between detection and suppression installation should be maintained. “We’ve made our positions known to the tax writing committee that we’re not in favor of these bills unless they have a balanced approach,” Chwat said.

     

              To Kill a Mockingbird 50th Anniversary/Giveaway        
    "Shoot all the bluejays you want, if you can hit 'em, but remember it's a sin to kill a mockingbird."

    A lawyer's advice to his children as he defends the real mockingbird of Harper Lee's classic novel—a black man charged with the rape of a white girl. Through the young eyes of Scout and Jem Finch, Harper Lee explores with rich humor and unswerving honesty the irrationality of adult attitudes toward race and class in the Deep South of the 1930s. The conscience of a town steeped in prejudice, violence, and hypocrisy is pricked by the stamina and quiet heroism of one man's struggle for justice—but the weight of history will only tolerate so much.

    The 50th anniversary edition of one of the best-loved books in American history: Harper Lee’s Pulitzer Prize-winning classic To Kill a Mockingbird. Featuring some of the most memorable characters in literary history—attorney Atticus Finch, his children Scout and Jem, and of course Boo Radley—To Kill a Mockingbird is the indelible story of race, class, and growing up in the Deep South of the 1930s.

    To commemorate the Golden Anniversary of the “Best Novel of the 20th Century” (Library Journal poll of American librarians), filmmaker Mary Murphy has interviewed prominent figures—including Oprah, Anna Quindlen, and Tom Brokaw—on how the book has impacted their lives, and compiled the interviews in Scout, Atticus, and Boo: the perfect companion to one of the most important American books of the 20th Century. Additionally, Scout, Atticus, and Boo features a foreword from acclaimed writer Wally Lamb.



    July 11th marks the 50th anniversary of To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee. To celebrate the occasion, I was given the opportunity to give away 2 sets of To Kill a Mockingbird and a book companion, Scout, Atticus, and Boo: A Celebration of 50 Years of To Kill A Mockingbird. Also, many bookstores across the country are throwing parties for the book. You can find dates and participating stores here: http://tokillamockingbird50year.com/.

    To enter this giveaway, complete the form below! USA only, and the deadline is July 17 at 12 p.m. :)


              Komentar na Otkrivamo potencijalne bonus likove Injusticea 2, komentirao/la Injustice 2 Fighter Pack 1 is complete – Starfire arrived in Injustice 2 roster – Gaming        
    […] Warner Bros. After the arrival of Starfire, completed the content of Fighter Pack 1, in which two other characters emerged earlier, Red Hood and Sub-Zero from Mortal Kombata. There are six additional characters in the plan, but more specific details of the same are not yet known, but which characters could work, you can find here . […]
              Komentar na Otkrivamo potencijalne bonus likove Injusticea 2, komentirao/la Injustice 2 Fighter Pack 1 je kompletan – Starfire stigla u Injustice 2 roster | GoodGame.hr        
    […] Warner Bros. je nakon dolaska Starfire kompletirao sadržaj Fighter Packa 1, u čijem su se sastavu naÅ¡la joÅ¡ dva ranije izaÅ¡la lika, Red Hood i Sub-Zero iz Mortal Kombata. JoÅ¡ Å¡est dodatnih likova je u planu, međutim konkretniji detalji o istim joÅ¡ nisu poznati, no o kojim bi se likovima moglo raditi, možete doznati ovdje. […]
              Komentar na Injustice 2, komentirao/la Injustice 2 je najprofitabilnija konzolaÅ¡ka igra drugog kvartala 2018. godine | GoodGame.hr        
    […] Injustice 2 trenutno je dostupan na PS4 i Xbox One konzolama, a Å¡to mi o njemu mislimo, možete pročitati u naÅ¡oj velikoj recenziji. […]
              Eclipse 04-16-2017 with Aaron Ladley, Rico, And Mimi The Masala        
    Playlist:

    Common- Resurrection - Resurrection
    DAngelo- Devils Pie - Unknown
    Joey Bada- Waves - Waves Single
    A Tribe Called Quest- Can I Kick It - Peoples Instinctive Travels The Paths Of Rhythm
    A Tribe Called Quest- Ego - Unknown
    De La Soul- The Bizness feat Common - Stakes Is High
    Axis Of Justice- Jurassic 5 Freedom - Concert Series 1
    Slimkid3 DJ NuMark- I Know Didnt I feat Darondo - Slimkid3 DJ NuMark
    UGLY DUCKLING- Everythings Alright - FRESH MODE
    Hieroglyphics- Battle Of The Shadow - Unknown
    Del Murs Fashawn- Rise Up - Unknown
    Fela Soul- Stakes Is High - Unknown
    Anderson Paak- Come Down - Malibu
    Gang Starr- Conspiracy - Daily Operation
    Killah Priest- BIBLE - Heavy Mental
    Nas Ft AZ- Lifes A Bitch JRocc Remix - Unknown
    Run DMC- Down With The King - Down With The King
    Kanye West- Jesus Walks - The College Dropout
    Stevie Wonder- Jesus Children Of America - Innervisions
    Raekwon- Visiting Hour feat Andra Day - The Wild
    JAY Z- Devils - Reasonable Doubt
    Lord Have Mercy DV Alias Khrist- Holy Water - Lyricist Lounge Vol 1
    Apollo Brown Guilty Simpson- One Man - Dice Game
    Total Notorious BIG- Cant You See - New Jersey Drive Vol 1
    GZA The Genius- Path Of Destruction - Pro Tools
    Black Milk- Black And Brown feat Danny Brown - Album Of The Year
    Raekwon- Marvin feat CeeLo Green - The Wild
    Ras Kass- Home Sweet Home - 12
    Ghostface Killah- Nutmeg feat RZA - Supreme Clientele
    Boogie Monsters- Behold A Pale Horse - Be Hold A Pale Horse
    Group Home- Suspended In Time - Livin Proof
    The Roots Blu Porn Dice Raw- Radio Daze - How I Got Over
    Reflection Eternal- Love Speakeasy - Reflection Eternal Train Of Thought
    Dilated Peoples- Work The Angles - The Platform
    Pharoahe Monch- The Truth - Internal Affairs
    Canibus- Spartibus - Rip The Jacker
    CRayz Walz- The Art Of Energy - Who The Fuck Are You
    Termanology- Watch How It Go Down Remix Feat Papoose Lil Fame Of MOPRemix - Hood Politics IV Show Prove


    playlist URL: http://www.afterfm.com/index.cfm/fuseaction/playlist.listing/showInstanceID/101/playlistDate/2017-04-16
              Eclipse 09-25-2016 with Z-rock, Chris Nathan, And Rico        
    Playlist:

    De La Soul- Pain feat Snoop Dogg - And The Anonymous Nobody
    NWA- Straight Outta Compton - Straight Outta Compton
    Gramatik- Expect Us - The Age Of Reason
    The Grouch Featuring Zion Bicasso- Moves That Make Me Featuring Zion Bicasso - Crusader For Justice
    Public Enemy- Hazy Shade Of Criminal - Greatest Misses
    Special Ed- Com On Lets Move It - Legal
    Aesop Rock- No Jumper Cables - Bazooka Tooth
    Limp Bizkit- N 2gether Now All In Together Now - New Old Songs
    Kenny Dope- Be Your Freak KDope Beats - Be Your Freak feat Josh Milan Single
    Eric B Rakim- No Omega - Let The Rhythm Hit Em
    Rodney O Joe Cooley- Supercuts - Greatest Hits
    Donald Byrd Sextet- I Got It Bad And That Aint Good - Getting Down To Business
    Poison Clan- Fire Up This Funk Listen Mix - Strait Zooism feat Rufftown Mob


    playlist URL: http://www.afterfm.com/index.cfm/fuseaction/playlist.listing/showInstanceID/101/playlistDate/2016-09-25
              Eclipse 07-03-2016 with DJ Deep Rawk        
    Playlist:

    Justice System- Summer In The City - Sounds Of The Rooftop
    Paris- The Days Of Old - Sleeping With The Enemy The Deluxe Edition Remastered Bonus Tracks
    Micranots- Heat - The Emperor The Assassin
    Black Moon- Jump Up - 12
    Public Enemy- Corplantationopoly - Man Plans God Laughs
    Pretty Tone Capone- Sexy - 12
    Co Real Artists- What About You In The World Today - The Funky 16 Corners
    Prince Po Oh No- Smash feat OC Pharoahe Monch - Animal Serum
    Mash Out Posse- Hilltop Flava No Sleep Til Brooklyn - Mash Out Posse
    - voicebreak -
    Audio Two- I Dont Care Instrumental - 12
    Biz Markie- Vapors - Bizs Baddest Beats The Best Of Biz Markie
    Salt N Pepa- Tramp Remix - 12
    Roxanne Shante- The Def Fresh Crew - 12
    Marly Marl- The Symphony - In Control Vol1
    Eric B Rakim- Eric B Is President - Repaid In Full The Paid In Full Remixes
    Reflection Eternal- Fortified Live - Unknown
    Dilated Peoples- Back Again - 2020
    Jurassic 5- Quality Control - Quality Control
    Big L- Flamboyant - 12
    A Tribe Called Quest- Steppin It Up feat Busta Rhymes Redman - The Love Movement
    Gang Starr- Rite Where U Stand - The Ownerz
    - voicebreak -
    Pitch Black- Its All Real - 12
    Cocoa Brovaz- Get Up - Lyricist Lounge Vol 2 Explicit Version
    Kanye West Talib Kweli Common- Get Em High - The College Dropout
    The Roots- Duck Down - The Tipping Point
    Camp Lo- Swing - Uptown Saturday Night
    Royce 59- Boom - 12
    Sean Price- Solidify - 12
    Mad Skillz- Ghostwriter - 12
    - voicebreak -
    Council Of Word- Sunshine joint - Indignorance
    Biz Markie- Things Get A Little Easier - The Biz Never Sleeps
    CL Smooth- Warm Outside Clean Version - Warm Outside I Cant Help It EP
    Any Meanz- Saturday - Bringing It Home Vol 2
    Erule- Listen Up - 12
    FT F That- Brollic - Rush Hour 2 Original Motion Picture Soundtrack
    E40- Big Ballin With My Homies - Charlie Hustle The Blueprint Of A SelfMade Millionaire
    Mike Jones- Still Tippin - Who Is Mike Jones
    FleshnBone- World So Cruel - THUGS Trues Humbly United Gatherin Souls
    - voicebreak -
    Big Daddy Kane- Aint No HalfSteppin - Long Live The Kane
    Grand Daddy IU- Dominos - Smooth Assassin
    Buckshot PMoney- Red Alert - BackPack Travels
    Biz Markie- Cool Vs Tribute To Scratching - Goin Off


    playlist URL: http://www.afterfm.com/index.cfm/fuseaction/playlist.listing/showInstanceID/101/playlistDate/2016-07-03
              Hope in Danticat's Claire of the Sea Light        
    Edwidge Danticat’s Claire of the Sea Light (2013) is a collection of interconnected narratives set in the fictional Ville Rose, an impoverished seaside village in Haiti.  The title character’s story—conveyed most directly in the first and last chapter of the text—frames and connects the other narratives included in the volume.  We meet Limyé Lanmé Faustin, translated to Claire of the Sea Light, on her seventh birthday, a day that is both celebratory and sorrowful for Claire and her father, Nozias, as it marks the seventh anniversary of both Claire’s birth and her mother’s death.  In the evening, Claire’s father, a fisherman, arranges to give his beloved daughter to Gaëlle Cadet Lavaud, a middle-class widow who lost her own young daughter in an automobile accident exactly three years ago, on Claire’s fourth birthday.  Guilt-stricken from arranging for the murder of her husband’s supposed killers and in mourning for her daughter, Gaëlle has long resisted Nozias’s proposal that she take the girl and provide her with a better life than he can, but, tonight, she has finally decided that she wants to care for Claire.  When Claire hears that Nozias and Gaëlle have officially agreed that she will leave the seaside shack where she and her father now reside, she runs away toward Món Initil, where the villagers believe that the ghosts of their slave ancestors reside.  Later, from her position on a hill above the town, she sees Nozias and Gaëlle performing basic life support on a nearly drowned man on the beach.  After she notices that Nozias is calling for more light, Claire rushes back to the seaside. At the end of the book, we can assume that Claire will act as a “sea light,” or lighthouse, aiding Nozias, Gaëlle, and other community members in their rescue efforts.  Indeed, in this scene, and throughout the text, Claire represents a beacon of light in the darkness of postcolonial Haiti: the possibility of perseverance in the face of oppression and grief, the necessity of healing after trauma, the emergence of new life from death.

    Significantly, Claire is a “revenan, a child who had entered the world just as her mother was leaving it” (16).  According to Ville Rose folklore, revenans are inclined to “follow their mothers into the other world,” to “[chase] a shadow they can never reach” (16).  In some ways, Claire does experience her dead mother as a shadow, sometimes feeling “another presence around her” (235-36).  Claire also seems to be drawn to death.  She “wonders what people would have said if she and her mother had died on the same day” (215).  Claire’s favorite song for the wonn, or the circle game that she plays with the other little girls in Ville Rose, is the Lasirén song, including the lyrics, “Lasirén, The Whale / My hat fell into the sea” (219).  Reflecting on this song, Claire notes its relevancy to the lives of Ville Rose citizens: “She was surprised that the granmoun, the adults, were not singing this song all day long.  So much had fallen into the sea.  Hats fell into the sea.  Hearts fell into the sea.  So much had fallen into the sea” (220).  Here, Claire alludes not only to her own loss of her mother, whom she associates with the sea in other passages, but also to the despair of an entire community, descended from slaves and now dependent on an unreliable and dangerous fish trade to feed and shelter themselves.  Even as a seven-year-old, Claire is astutely aware of the oppression and grief that the community has undergone.  Fittingly, when Claire runs away from Nozias and Gaëlle, she heads for Món Initil, where, according to legend, masses of fugitive slaves died in pursuit of their freedom.  Just as the townspeople predicted by naming her a revenan at birth, Claire seems to pursue the shadows of her own past as well as a communal past.

    Rather than join her mother in death or the ghosts of escaped slaves on Món Initil, however, Claire ultimately returns—running and gleeful—to the land of the living, ready to help the people gathered around the man on the beach and then to “becom[e] Madame Gaëlle’s daughter” (238).  On her way home, she imagines that “this too could make a good song for the wonn”: “She had to go home / To see the man / Who’d crawled half dead / Out of the sea” (238).  In this version of a wonn song, Claire focuses on a man’s triumph over the sea instead of the sea’s power to take and to kill.  For the moment at least, she shifts her attention from death to life and despair to hope.  This shift is reflected in the Nozias and Gaëlle’s efforts to save the man on the beach; despite the fact that their own “sorrows could have nearly drowned them,” the two “take turns breathing into this man, breathing him back to life” (238).  At this moment, they choose to contribute to life instead of wallow in death.

    Danticat has been quoted as saying that she structured Claire of the Sea Light after the pattern of movement in a game of wonn:  

    Wonn is a children’s game that is a lot like “Ring a Round the Rosie.” Kids, often little girls, get together, hold hands, make a circle, and run clockwise, or counter clockwise while singing. One child is in the middle while the others are singing and they switch places during different moments in the song. This game mirrors the structure of the book in that the book moves back and forth through time and circles back to different characters.  (Dowling)

    Just as the stories in the text shift and connect with each other as the participants in a game of wonn, the narrative that the text conveys overall resembles the narrative of a wonn song, relaying the history and spirit of a community through fragmented narrative and stories that repeat, with a difference, details previously conveyed.  Indeed, it is possible to read the text as an expansion of the wonn song that Claire invents as she runs back to her beachside home.

    Tellingly, the narrative conveyed in the text contrasts sharply with the stories that Claire recalls being read to her at school: “In Madame Louise’s stories, everything was organized in a certain way; everything was neat.  Things would start out well, but would end up being bad, then would be well again” (214).  Louise George works at a local radio station and volunteers at Claire’s school.  She also suffers from a rare and untreatable condition that causes blood to stream from her mouth when she is menstruating.  Louise structures episodes on her radio program, Di Mwen, translated to Tell Us, much like the stories that she shares with the Claire and her classmates.  On Di Mwen, Louise interviews members of the community who have undergone some kind of hardship or trauma.  Instead of calling for social action to address the oppression in people’s lives, she finds opportunities to lighten the mood with “little remarks in the middle of a painful story” meant to “[make] people in the listening audience laugh” (173-74).  Louise also shapes each episode to produce “the part where the horrible story began to take a positive turn” (178), shaping her guests’ stories into narratives that follow a traditional story arch, to conclude happiness, stasis, justice.  Not surprisingly, “Claire didn’t believe stories like [Madame Louise’s], even when she felt like they were aimed at her, even when they were meant to defend her or teach her a lesson” (214).  In fact, Claire distrusts language in general, saying that she wishes people were like trees because “talking wasn’t everything” (213).  Some narratives are false, damaging, even violent, as symbolized by the blood that flows from Louise’s mouth.  The story that Claire composes in her wonn song—and the narrative of Claire of the Sea Light—defies the traditional story arch structure and, thus, challenges the narrative oppression of stories meant to contain and sanitize the struggles of Haitians. 

    In fact, Claire of the Sea Light is more in the vein of the stories that Bernard Dorien wants to air on the radio, where he works with Louise before he is falsely accused of killing Gaëlle’s husband and then murdered by the men that Gaëlle hired to enact justice for her loss.  From Cité Pendue, the part of town where gangs run rampant, “Bernard imagined himself becoming the kind of radio journalist who’d talk about what he preferred to call the ‘geto,’ from the inside” (67).  Specifically, Bernard is interested in the young men of Cité Pendue who participate in gang activity, men the townspeople of Ville Rose call “ghosts” (68).  He believes that “[w]e can’t move forward as a neighborhood, as a town, or as a country . . . unless we know what makes these men cry” (68).  In Claire of the Sea Light, stories of the oppression and despair felt by Ville Rose citizens of all social strata are aired, although not in the way that Bernard might have imagined.  In the end, Claire turns from the ghosts of the past and the present to begin a new life.   Danticat’s wonn song conveys continued struggle, as the characters not only fight to save a man’s life on the beach but also contend with personal trauma and communal oppression.  But the story ends with hope, with Claire of the Sea Light returning to the community to help with the rescue effort.

    Works Cited

    Danticat, Edwidge.  Claire of the Sea Light.  Knopf Doubleday, 2013.

    Dowling, Brendan.  "Maneuvering Myself Around a Scene: A Conversation with Edwidge Danticat." Public Libraries Online.  21 Oct. 2013.  Web.  23 May 2014.

              The N-Word Presentation        
    I developed this sample presentation for a course on "othering."  It is designed to both model how I'd like students to construct their own presentations throughout the semester and also to introduce them to some of the controversial issues that will arise as they read and discuss Mark Twain's The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn.  The presentation brings up some important issues for teachers to consider--what are the consequences of using this term in the classroom or of avoiding the term?

    I've posted the rough script below.  Follow along with the visual part of the presentation at: http://www.mixbook.com/photo-books/education/the-n-word-controversy-7764505.

    Page 1
    N-Word Controversy—more apt title might be N-Word Controversies
    Used as my cover image a pic of Malcolm X, a man who gave a lot of thought to this word
    According to a treatise that he wrote for the Organization of Afro-American Unity in his final years, decided that it must be rejected in all of its forms
    So, going to turn it over to you
    Will ask you to think about whether this word should ever be uttered in today’s world
    If so, who has the right to say it?
    When should it be said?
    Should it be printed in classic literary texts?
    Finally, how should we handle this issue as we encounter the term in our own classroom?
    Disclaimer—I use term “n-word” when reading aloud, but I have printed the actual word in the text of the presentation

    Page 2
    Going to start by talking a little bit about the word's orgins, specifically how it came to be used in the US
    N-word derived from the Latin “niger,” meaning “black,” according to an entry in the OED
    More importantly, became derogatory in the US as African-Americans became quintessential others
    Read quote
    Remember our definition of othering—projecting negative traits onto another human or group of humans in order to imagine that you don’t possess those traits and then treating them as inferior to reinforce your own superiority
    This is exactly how white colonists used n-word—to show that they were superior to another group, to other and oppress

    Page 3
    Many ask, why is this one word so incredibly offensive, maybe more so than any other in the English language?
    Let’s follow the flow chart here
    In American, at least, it all started with slavery
    Here we have a poster, offering a monetary reward for the return of human property
    Read poster
    Evidence of people hunted like animals, forced to serve others in ways that we don’t want to even imagine, and regarded as little more than part of white people’s larger estate
    Next, after abolition, freed slaves were forced to continue to serve white people, despite their legal “freedom”—as cooks, caregivers, maids, farm-hands
    Disallowed opportunities for education, social advancement, political activism
    Any attempts at uplift were met with violence
    Were continued to be treated as others in order to reinforce superiority of white people
    Here we have an example of segregation—a “colored” water fountain, where black people were forced to drink water separately from white people because white people could not bear the thought of putting their lips near a metal piece that black people might also put their touch with their mouths
    Finally, in the present day, we only have to look at incarceration statistics to know that racism continues

    There were more than five times as many black men in jail than white men in 2006 according to the US Bureau of Justice Statistics.
    We know that this is partly due to the continued limited opportunities available to black men and partly due to the stricter penalties enacted on black men vs. white men
    So, why is this word so offensive?
    Aha! I know.
    It has everything to do with othering
    It is because this word represents how black men and women have been othered throughout American history, it has been used to reinforce the inferiority of black men and women for centuries
    A clip from YouTube shows this legacy of oppression well--http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mdY04-xds3k: show segments 0-53, 1:24-2:05, 2:50-4:56

    Page 4
    The history of othering and oppression that my flow chart and the video show are very convincing in suggesting that the word should just never be spoken
    On the other hand, some insist that we should say the word in appropriate contexts, in order to diffuse its power over us
    Emily Bernard writes about a series of discussions that she had with her college-aged students about the word
    Most refused to say it, but some agreed with her that it should be spoken
    Quote
    In The N-Word, a documentary produced by Andy Cohen, comedian Dick Gregory goes a step further, saying that we are actually allowing a white racist system to erase a history of oppression if we stop saying the word that represents that oppression.
    Quote
    Certainly, we don’t want our silence to amplify or erase a history of othering

    Page 5
    In the past few decades, black men and women have attempted to rehabilitate the n-word, or the different forms of it that I’ve printed on this pageWe know that lots of people today use it as a way of identifying fellowship or brotherhood among black people or even just close friends
    OED even recognizes this positive form of the word’s usage
    We see this in the media with figures like Laurence Fishborne, film director, who admits to using the term within close circles of friends on the documentary The N-Word
    Nicki Minaj uses the term a total of 35 times in just one song, entitled “N.I.G.G.A.S.,” which laments the current oppression of black men in this country
    And she actually references the problem that I talked about a few minutes ago—that many black men are given very little opportunity for social advancement and end up incarcerated in numbers that are not proportionate to the number of white men who are imprisoned for the same crimes
    It is as if she is using this word—which some would say carries with it a history of oppression—to unite the black community in continuing “hold on” and “keep tryin,'” as the lyrics to the song say
    Then we have Sean Combs and Ludacris who also use the word in their music as a way of indicating fellowship or closeness with other black men
    Samuel L. Jackson says on The N-Word that he insists that all who work with him know upfront that he is an n-word
    Using the word in slightly different way—to indicate that he is tough and not afraid to fight for what he believes in
    Then we have Katt Williams who uses the term liberally in stand-up
    Use of n-word by black people themselves started to gain national attention in the 1970s when Richard Pryor began to do it in his comedy routines
    Used it in a positive way, as a way of showing affection between family members, brotherhood between men—much like all of these contemporary figures do
    Ironically, after pretty much single-handedly managing to take the use of this word mainstream, Pryor renounced his use of the term in the late 80s.
    According to Hilton Als, Pryor came to the conclusion that “to call one's brother a 'nigger'" is to describe one's own "wretchedness’”

    Page 6
    Now going to turn to the use of the word in The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn
    Ranked #14 on the American Library Association’s list of Top 100 Banned/Challenged Books for the decade of 2000-2009Reason cited is racism
    Book actually uses word total of 219 times
    Might have something to do with it
    Because of the history of oppression and othering that comes with this word, it can make the book very difficult to read, even at the college level
    Going to quote from an article that you are going to read for this class in a couple of weeks
    This section of the article is written from the perspective of a non-traditional student—African-American woman, on her experience of reading Huck Finn
    Had just returned to college
    Excited to have opportunity to read this classic that she had never read
    Read quote
    Interesting that she refers to Malcolm X here, man who believed in procuring dignity of black men and women through eradication of n-word, in her lamentation of its use in this American classic
    If it is this painful for a grown woman to read this word, imagine effects on a child

    Page 7
    This is why, in 2011, publisher NewSouth introduced edited versions of Tom Sawyer and The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn
    Replaced "n-word" with "slave"
    Here are some reasons that Professor Alan Gribben gave during NPR’s Talk of the Nation last January for agreeing to edit the two texts in this way
    Says that this edition is for young children who would not get to read the book otherwise because of the ways that the book has been censored
    Quote
    Says that Twain might well have adapted to this change, since this author was particularly known for changing his opinions about matters throughout his life
    Quote
    And, finally, says that this edition does not change the central concept of the book, only makes it more tolerable for those sensitive to a particular word
    Quote
    It would appear that Professor Gribben should get a gold star, right?

    Page 8
    Well, except for the fact that the new edition has caused public and scholarly outrage
    One commentator on NPR’s Weekend Edition Saturday compared the editing out of the n-word in Huck Finn to the covering of the bloody figures in Picasso’s “Guernica” with band-aids
    Quote
    Picasso painted “Guernica” to protest the bombing of Guernica, Spain by German and Italian warplanes during the Spanish Civil War
    Meant to show suffering that war causes
    To put band-aids over the gashes in this scene would not only deface this classic, evocative work of art, but it would also cover over a history of suffering that we should remember
    Similarly, Simon is saying that to change "slave" for the n-word in Huck Finn is to tamper with a work of art and also to deny the oppression and othering that this word connotes
    It is both silly and unwise

    Page 9
    Time is ticking
    Now is when you decide what you believe and how you will handle this issue
    We’ve looked at figures like Malcolm X and Richard Pryor, who insist that the use of this term is harmful
    People like Nicki Minaj, who see it as a way of uniting black men and women and fighting oppression
    Seen how it can be hurtful to people when read in classic texts like Huck Finn
    Learned how others insist that we must keep it and talk about it in order to remember a history of oppression
    What do you think?
    Maybe take three comments on one small part of this issue, most important to us, how we should handle this in the classroom
    Each extreme and in the middle
    Clearly a provocative topic
    My hope is that discussion of it can bring us together instead of divide us

    Page 10
    Works Cited


              The Good Woman of A Few Good Men        
    This weekend, I revisited Rob Reiner’s A Few Good Men (I was 12 when it first came out and probably viewed it once a few years later as a teenager). I am planning to use the film to spur discussion on the contemporary treatment of themes like justice, law, truth, leadership, etc. that my Honors humanities students will also discover in Sophocles’s tragedies from the fifth century BCE. It will work just fine to do that, I think, and, as an added bonus, it will help us to discuss the role of women in contemporary “tragedy” in comparison to the female figures, such as the title characters of Antigone and Electra, that we find in Greek drama. Indeed, this film casts women—in a military setting and in the 1980s, at least—similarly to how Sophocles casts them in these two plays, in static roles that function to support the development of male leaders and benefit the state at large.

    I was surprised to find in LCDR Joanne (not insignificantly nicknamed Jo) Galloway, the only lead female character in the film, a stereotypically female lack of self-confidence and an equally stereotypical willingness to “nurture” her male colleague, LTJG Daniel Kaffee, as well as his scapegoated young clients, Pfc. Louden Downey and LCpl. Harold Dawson, from behind the scenes. As Galloway, Demi Moore disappoints. This is certainly not the Demi Moore of G.I. Jane or even Disclosure. She is first introduced muttering to herself as she prepares to request that her male superiors give her the Downey and Dawson case. She botches the request despite her preparation and is then ordered from the room so that the two men present can “talk behind [her] back.” When they call her back in, they of course announce that Downey and Dawson will be appointed alternative counsel. The defense of the two young Marines ultimately lands in the lap of the goof-off Kaffee, who is more interested in winning inter-unit baseball and basketball scrimmages than of pursuing the truth in the military investigation.

    Galloway accepts Kaffee (played by Tom Cruise) as lead counsel on the case, but as an officer in Internal Affairs, she is able to keep a close eye on him. She ends up joining his defense team and helping him to win the case and, thereby, develop into the lawyer he was meant to be, a man who finally decides to fulfill the patrilineal legacy left by his attorney father and who ultimately proves his worth as an officer in the Navy. Indeed, despite her constant spurring on of Kaffee and her invaluable work on the case, it is not Galloway who is recognized by a salute at the end of the movie—and thus fully indoctrinated as one of “a few good men”—but Kaffee. Galloway stands behind the male lawyer, happy to have helped.

    Sure, this film does at least partially admit to the discrimination that Galloway faces in the military, as Kaffee implies at one point that she has had to prove herself at every turn because she is a woman and, more obviously, in the scene in which Col. Nathan Jessep (played by a crotchety Jack Nicholson) crudely suggests that the only value that women—and especially high-ranking women—bring to the military is their ability to sexually arouse and satisfy their male colleagues. In the face of Jessep’s sexual harassment, Galloway stands her ground, refusing to let the corporal off the hook simply because he has succeeded in debasing her in front of a circle of other men. But Jessep is the bad guy anyway; his abuse of Galloway is easy to write off as just another demonstration of his tyrannical personality. And when she helps to finally put him away, the implication is that not only is the military now freer of the abuse of power but also of sexual discrimination—the later part of which is simply not borne out in that ending salute.

    Like Antigone, who is executed in order to help define the legal rights of (male) individuals within a state, and Electra, who temporarily steps outside of the bounds of femininity to help restore a rightful (male) leader, Jo Galloway quietly makes the world a better place from a position of clear social inferiority.
              "Kubla Khan" Regret        
    In preparing to teach Samuel Coleridge’s “Kubla Khan” (1816) this week, it struck me—as it has when I’ve read this poem in the past—just how sexist this “classic” really is. Womanhood is nothing more than a metaphor in this carefully wrought little poem. Its “woman wailing for her demon-lover” represents the unknown, the beautiful, the terrifying, the emotional, the bodily, the creative, the generative. And ready access to all of this is the speaker’s rightful pursuit. In this way, of course, the wailing woman’s own expression of feeling is usurped as property of the (male) poet. Similarly, the “Abyssinian maid” with a dulcimer is portrayed as a muse in the poem, her own art existing only to stimulate the poet’s creative process. The sexism here is powerful in that it resonates with centuries of literary tradition. Women are so often in canonized literature portrayed as excessively sensual and emotional, symbolic of sublime creativity and/or serving as muses for male writers who imagine themselves strictly cerebral beings.

    I used this poem in my “Reading and Writing about Literature” course today to begin to teach close reading. I hoped to facilitate my students’ discussion of the poem’s formal elements and eventual articulation of its possible meanings. This was quite an ambitious goal for a single class period, given the complexity of “Kubla Khan,” but my students (a really smart bunch!) were up for the challenge. By the close of the period, we had teased out several possible interpretations, and I ended feeling like we had really done the poem justice. But now, reflecting again on my initial reading of the poem, I am wondering if we did the women in the poem justice.

    Certainly, we talked about both of the women figured in the poem. But we stayed mostly on the level of symbolism. In other words, we read these women just as the speaker in the poem does, in service to the male poet’s creative process. I don’t want to turn every class period into a feminist rally, but I do wish that we had been a little bit more “meta” about our reading of the women in Coleridge’s poem. We could have at least acknowledged our treatment of these figures as mere symbols and noted the problematic implications of this type of reading.

    Looking back on our discussion of the poem, I realize that one student gave me a perfect opening to incorporate a feminist angle into our conversation. He said that it almost seemed as if the wailing woman was causing the chaos that overtakes Kubla Khan’s “pleasure dome.” For whatever reason—and maybe it was because he went on to right away make an additional point—we moved quickly to a different topic. I remember thinking that I wanted to go back to what he had said and ask students to think more about why Coleridge might have chosen to figure this woman in particular as either impetus for or characteristic of the terrible and yet awesome energy that erupts into the paradise portrayed in the poem’s opening lines. Much as I wish that I had, I just never returned to that point.
              Mary Conley Hilliker - grave found!        
    Mary Conley born 23 June 1833 in Cayuga County, NY (calculated from her gravestone; says she was 38 years 9 months, 7 days).

    I have her marriage to Lester Gibbs on 12 Nov 1850 in Lapeer County, Michigan (source Dibean Marriage Records), daughter Eleanor (Ella) born sometime between 1852-1854, I can't find her in the 1860 census, and she isn't with Lester or her daughter, which are with Philo & Mary Ann Gibbs in Dryden, Lapeer County, MI. According to Family Search, she marries to Charles Garner in 1861 in NY (but her surname is Traverse), between 1862-1864 they have Albert and Harriet Garner, all in Cayuga or Wayne County, NY. Charles dies in the Salisbury Prison in Salisbury, NC. Sometime after his death in December of 1864, but before 1868 she moves back to Lapeer County, Michigan.

    She marries Mortimer Hilliker on 29 March 1868 (this is where I get Cayuga County, NY as her birth). Daughter Lillie is born in December 1868 in Dryden, Lapeer County, MI. I next find her in 1870 census with husband Mortimer in Dryden, Lapeer County, MI with Bert & Hattie as Hilliker's not Garner. She died on 1 April 1872 and is buried in Thornville Cemetery, Lapeer County, MI.

    What I find interesting is...
    1. I found Charles Garner in 1860 with Robert & Mary Conley in Cayuga County.
    2. Mortimer Hilliker's brother Albert married Rebecca Conley daughter of Justice & Lucy Conley and has a sister named Mary.
    3. I found Justus COONLEY (spelling different I know) with Ester, Lucey, Julia, Mary, Harriet, and Rebecca in Lapeer County in 1850
    4. Mary is buried in the same cemetery as other Hilliker's but also with Gibbs and Eoff's.

    Could my Mary be related to Albert's wife Rebecca? Could Robert and Mary Conley who Charles Garner is living with be related to my Mary? Where oh where did my Mary go??


              Eclipse 10-04-2015 with DJ Deep Rawk        
    Playlist:

    Organized Konfusion- Stress - The Best Of Organized Konfusion Bonus Track Version
    Cap D- Bright Lights - 12
    Rahzel- Make The Music 2000 Instrumental - 12
    Whodini- One Love - Whodini Greatest Hits
    E40 Featuring Leviti- 1Luv - In A Major Way
    8Ball MJG- Break em Off - On Top Of The World
    Clipse- Mr Me Too - Mr Me Too feat Pharrell Williams Single
    Doug E Fresh- Ladi Dadi - Doug E Fresh The Greatest Hits
    Stetsasonic- Go Stetsa 1 - On Fire
    The Extra Ts- I Like It - 12
    Prince Paul- More Than U Know feat De La Soul - Prince Among Thieves
    DJ Quik- Quikker Said Than Dunn - Balances Options
    - voicebreak -
    Deltron 3030- The Return - Event II
    Micranots- Glorious - The Emperor The Assassin
    Awol One Mike Nardone- Sleepin All Day - Speakerface
    JVC Force- Big Trax - 12
    Nubian Crackers- Two For The Time Symphonic Cracker Mix - The Greatest Shits Vol 1
    Super Lover Cee Casanova Rud- Do The James - Super Casanova Single
    Ultramagnetic MCs- A Chorus Line Original 12 Version Featuring Tim Dog - Critical Beatdown
    Natural Elements- 2 Tons - 12
    The Roots Blu Porn Dice Raw- Radio Daze - How I Got Over
    Fashawn- Its A Good Thing feat Aloe Blacc Choosey - The Ecology
    People Under The Stairs- Yes I Can - 12 Step Program
    OC- Timess Up DJ Eclipse Remix - 12
    Special Ed- Neva Go Back - HipHop Legacy Vol 8
    - voicebreak -
    Twin And Alchemist- Different Worlds - 12
    Masta Ace MF Doom- Nineteen Seventy Something - MADoom Son Of Yvonne
    Souls Of Mischief L- Thats When Ya Lost Instrumenta - 12
    JustIce- Cold Gettin Dumb - Back To The Old School
    T La Rock- This Beat Kicks - Lyrical King
    Antipop Consortium- Bubblz - Arrythmia
    The Angel Cokni ODire- Strange Times Version - No Gravity
    Ingrid De Lambre Eddie Def- Poeisies Scene 1 Le Blues - Deep Concentration
    DamFunk- Im Just Tryna Survive In The Big City feat QTip - Invite The Light
    Dbruit- Accord Don - i Srpriz EP
    Hawthorne Headhunters- A Song About Her Ced Nos Remix - Hawthorne Headhunters EP
    Computer Jay- Phantom - LA Series 7 EP
    Quazedelic- Around The World - 12
    Aceyalone- Lost Your Mind - Love Hate
    Tribe Called Quest- Hot Sex - 12
    - voicebreak -
    J Dilla- Safety Dance - Donut Shop
    Madlib- Slims Return - Shades Of Blue Madlib Invades Blue Note
    Ming And FS- Family Featuring Wordplay - 12
    Davina- So Good So Dirty Remix Featuring Ol Dirty Bastard And LA The Darkman - 12
    DAngelo- Left And Right Clean Radio Edit - Ultimate DAngelo
    Yk Ballz- For The Critics - 12


    playlist URL: http://www.afterfm.com/index.cfm/fuseaction/playlist.listing/showInstanceID/101/playlistDate/2015-10-04
              Eclipse 05-03-2015 with DJ Deep Rawk        
    Playlist:

    Butta Verses De La Soul- Fanatic Of The B Word - De La Soul Is Dead
    JustIce- Moshitup - Kool Deadly Justicizms
    ESP- Makin Nat Green - Valoompadoom Pink
    Poor Righteous Teachers- Easy Star - Pure Poverty
    Marly Marl- Droppin Science - In Control Vol1
    Doug E Fresh- All The Way To Heaven - Doug E Fresh The Greatest Hits
    Fab 5 Freddy- Change The Beat French English Rap - Change The Beat The Celluloid Records Story 19791987
    - voicebreak -
    Boot Camp Clik- Dont Say Sht To Ruck Sean Price - CollectDISEdition
    The Beatnuts- Reign Of The Tec - Classic Nuts Vol 1
    KRS ONE- Get Yourself Up - Sneak Attack
    RunDMC- Peter Piper - Raising Hell
    Large Professor- Happy Days R Here Again - Professorlarge
    Public Enemy- I Cant Do Nuttin For Ya Man - Fear Of A Black Planet
    MC Sugar Ray And Stranger D- Knock Em Out Sugar Ray - 12
    The Roots- Understand feat Dice Raw Greg Porn - And Then You Shoot Your Cousin
    The Soul Pros- Advocates Of Change - 7
    The Roots- Never Featuring Patty Crash - And Then You Shoot Your Cousin
    - voicebreak -
    Big J Beats- Instrumental - 12
    Gang Starr- You Know My Steez - Moment Of Truth
    A Tribe Called Quest- Push It Along - Peoples Instinctive Travels The Paths Of Rhythm
    A Tribe Called Quest- Jazz Weve Got - The Low End Theory
    AZ- Sugarhill - Doe Or Die
    The 3hree Project- All Or NothinFeaturing FL And Leona Harper - The 3hree Project
    Termanology- Nobodys Smilin - Time Machine
    KRSOne- Sound Of Da Police - Return Of The Boom Bap
    Crooklyn Dodgers- Return Of The Crooklyn Dodgers - Rare Play Vol 1
    - voicebreak -
    Public Enemy- Fight The Power - Fear Of A Black Planet
    Lupe Fiasco- Around My Way Freedom Aint Free - Food Liquor II The Great American Rap Album Pt 1 Deluxe Version
    Common- Ghetto Dreams feat Nas - The Dreamer The Believer
    Talib Kweli- Beautiful feat Big KRIT Outasight Mela Machinko - Beautiful feat Big KRIT Outasight Mela Machinko Single
    Camp Lo- Summer Love - 12
    Da Bush Babees- We Run Things - We Run Things
    Digable Planets- Rebirth Of Slick Cool Like Dat - Reachin A New Refutation Of Time Space
    - voicebreak -
    St Down- A Day With My Homies - A Day With My Homiez
    Knuckleheadz- Savages - 12
    MF GRIMM- Emotions - Scars Memories
    Pharoahe Monch- Eht Dnarg Noisulli feat The Stepkids - PTSD Post Traumatic Stress Disorder
    Micranots- Farward - Return Of The Travellahs


    playlist URL: http://www.afterfm.com/index.cfm/fuseaction/playlist.listing/showInstanceID/101/playlistDate/2015-05-03
              Eclipse 02-15-2015         
    Playlist:

    Queen Latifah Monie Love- Ladies First - All Hail The Queen
    The Fatback Band- Are You Ready Do The Bus Stop - Raising Hell
    Mos Def- Bounce - Black On Both Sides
    Lightheaded- Blink Of An Eye - Pure Thoughts
    JADE- Dont Walk Away - Jade To The Max
    The Grouch- Moves That Make Me feat Zumbi Bicasso - Crusader For Justice
    Common- I Have A Dream - Sountrack Freedom Writers
    Souls Of Mischief- Thats When Ya Lost - Full Circle Tour Live
    Eric B Rakim- Whats On Your Mind - Dont Sweat The Technique
    Zion I- Innerlight Icy Remix - Mind Over Matter
    Angie Stone Bahamadia Erykah Badu Queen Latifah- Love Of My Life Worldwide - Worldwide Underground
    Curtis Mayfield- Toot An Toot An Toot - Love Is The Place
    The Notorious BIG- 1970 Somethin Featuring The Game And Faith Evans - Duets The Final Chapter
    Lone Ranger- Its Yours - Unknown
    AZ- Sugar Hill - 12 Single
    Shabaam Sadeeq- Sound Clash - 12 Single


    playlist URL: http://www.afterfm.com/index.cfm/fuseaction/playlist.listing/showInstanceID/101/playlistDate/2015-02-15
              Eclipse 08-03-2014 with Dj Sd, Timeko T And Dj Deep Rawk        
    Playlist:

    Mos Def- Get To Steppin - 12
    Planet Asia- In Love With You - 12
    Gurus Jazzmatazz- Supa Love - Streetsoul
    Wordsworth- Get What You Love - 12
    The Roots- Get Busy - Rising Down Bonus Version
    A Tribe Called Quest- Award Tour - Midnight Marauders
    Lauryn Hill- Every Ghetto - 12
    Fresh Daily- Say Yes - 12
    A Touch Of Jazz- Always - 12
    - voicebreak -
    Compilation- Cant Get You Out Of My Head - Britannia Soul Vol 1
    Nas- Cant Forget About You - Hip Hops Dead
    OutKast- Love In War - Speakerboxxx The Love Below
    Rapsody- NonFiction feat Raheem DeVaughn AbSoul - The Idea Of Beautiful
    Termanology- So Amazing - Politics As Usual
    Illvibe Collective- Medicine Men feat ARM African Rebel Movement - All Together Now
    7 Days Of Funk- Fadin Away - 7 Days Of Funk
    Big House And Gyp Da Hyp- We Do This - 12
    - voicebreak -
    Trel Mac- Charisma - 12
    CheLuther- Descendents Of The Gods feat Ill Seven - Descendents Of The Gods feat Ill Seven Single
    UTFO- Ya Cold Wanna Be Wit Me - Hits
    Don Kennedy- Pleeze - 12
    Action Bronson- Strictly 4 My Jeeps - Strictly 4 My Jeeps Single
    Talib Kwali- Turn Up - 12
    Foodchain- Dear Industry - Unknown
    Nas- Let There Be Light - 12
    - voicebreak -
    5280 Mystic- Soy Sauce - 12 Inch
    Dat Gurl Netta- Drunk In Love - 12
    Stalley- Slapp feat Rashad - Lincoln Way Nights
    Choxmak- Final Destination - 12 Inch
    - Get Up Get Out - 12 Inch
    Wriky Knotz- Rolex - 12
    Trev Rich- Dont Stop - 12 Inch
    - voicebreak -
    Mike Wird- The Blast Off - Afronaut Funk Vol 1
    The Last Poets Dead Prez And Common- Panthers - 12
    Poor Righteous Teachers- Slaves In America - The Unbound Project
    Pharoahe Monch- When The Gun Draws feat Mr Porter - Desire
    Terminator X And The Godfathers Of Threatt- Under The Sun - 12
    Cormega- The Come Up feat Large Professor - True Meaning
    Mobb Deep Featuring Crystal Johnson- Temperatures Rising feat Crystal Johnson - The Infamous
    Kool G Rap- Nobody Cant Eat - 12
    CL Smooth- Warm Outside Clean Version - Warm Outside I Cant Help It EP
    - voicebreak -
    JustIce- Latoya - Back To The Old School
    Nemesis- Munchies For Your Bass - 12
    Artist Unknown- Tell Me Whats On Your Mind - 12
    Lateef The Truthspeaker- The Quickening - SoleSides Greatest Bumps
    Marco Polo- Marquee Clean - The Radar EP
    Qwazmodoe- Find Out - 12
    Marley Marl- Symphony - Unknown
    Gang Starr- Dwyck - Hard To Earn
    Panda One- Take It To The Corner Of A Block - 12
    Doug E Fresh And The Get Fresh Crew- Summertime - 12


    playlist URL: http://www.afterfm.com/index.cfm/fuseaction/playlist.listing/showInstanceID/101/playlistDate/2014-08-03
              College Briefs: Oct. 26        
    Social justice scholar to present on fair education for black girls Monique W.
              Eclipse 08-25-2013         
    Playlist:

    The Brand New Heavies- Sometimes - Unknown
    The Roots- Right On - Unknown
    Deltron 3030- Mastermind - Deltron 3030
    AZ- Sugar Hill - Unknown
    Grand Puba- I Like It - Real Hip Hop Volume 1
    CL Smooth Pete Rock- Take You There - The Main Ingredient
    QTip- We Fight We Love - 12
    Evidence Ft Infinate And Fashawn- Recognize - Layover Mix Tape
    Guru- Trust Me - Jazzmatazz Vol1
    Del The Funky Homosapien- Mistadobalina - The Best Of Del Tha Funkee Homosapien The Elektra Years BBoy Handbook
    Compilation- Paid In Full - Gold
    DJ Inform- Money Cant Save Your Soul - The Cutting Room
    Binary Star- Conquistadors feat Senim Silla One Be Lo - Masters Of The Universe
    Wax Tailor- Positively Inclined feat Marina Quaisse ASM - Positively Inclined The Way We Lived EP
    Common- I Have A Dream - Sountrack Freedom Writers
    The Grouch Featuring Zion Bicasso- Moves That Make Me Featuring Zion Bicasso - Crusader For Justice
    Lightheaded- Blink Of An Eye - Pure Thoughts
    Too hort- City Of Dope - Life IsToo hort
    Molina Speaks- Colorado HipHop Pt 1 - Greatest Rapper Never Heard
    Kool G Rap And Dj Polo- Streets Of New York - Unknown
    The High Mighty- The Meaning - Home Field Advantage
    Common- Nuthin To Do - Resurrection
    Defari- Behold My Life Stree - Bionic 2 Behold My Life EP
    Aceyalone- Guidlines - Unknown
    Big L- Street Struck Instrumental - Unknown
    Gang Starr- Conspiracy - Daily Operation
    Audio Two- Top Billin - What More Can I Say
    Ghostface Killah Cappadonna UGod- Winter Warz - Ironman
    Too Short- Blow Your Whistle - Unknown
    Jurassic 5- Radio - Feedback
    Sermon Erik Featuring Gaye Marvin- Music Instrumental Version - The Instrumental RB And HipHop Collection Vol 68
    A E- Remind Me - Unknown
    Wale- LoveHate Thing feat Sam Dew - The Gifted


    playlist URL: http://www.afterfm.com/index.cfm/fuseaction/playlist.listing/showInstanceID/101/playlistDate/2013-08-25
              Restorative Practices Workshop        
    Restorative Practices Workshop

    Hosted by the Colorado School Safety Resource Center

     

    Date: Thursday, August 10 - Friday, August 11

    Time: 8:00 AM - 4:00 PM each day

    Location: Wheat Ridge Recreation Center, 4005 Kipling Street, Wheat Ridge

    Description: Day one of this workshop will provide a philosophical overview of restorative practices in schools and the rationale as to why this will help with discipline issues, positive school climate, data tracking and aligning your RTI/PBIS programs. Designed particularity for administrators.

    Day two of the workshop will focus on communication skills, restorative practices and practical strategies that can be used immediately by teachers, counselors, security and administrative staff that want to improve relationships, behavior, and reduce discipline incidents in the classroom and hallways. This interactive workshop presents a spectrum of restorative techniques, offers implementation ideas, and explains how the process works. Designed for teachers and others who will be implementing restorative practices in their schools.

    Kerri Schmitt holds a master’s degree in Negotiation and Dispute Resolution from Creighton University School of Law. She works with schools and court systems to create alternative responses to disciplinary code infractions and juvenile crime. She co-created the highly successful restorative justice program used in Colorado Springs reducing recidivism to less than 6%. Her “Restorative Dialogue” program has been taught to over 1,000 educators and is the primary restorative justice curriculum used in the Dept. of Youth Corrections.

     

    Registration: Click here for more information and to register.


              A Wall in Jerusalem: Hope, Healing, and the Struggle for Justice in Israel and Palestine        
    A Wall in Jerusalem: Hope, Healing, and the Struggle for Justice in Israel and Palestine
    author: Mark Braverman
    name: Sara
    average rating: 4.50
    book published: 2013
    rating: 5
    read at: 2017/07/20
    date added: 2017/07/20
    shelves: ridiculously-good-non-fiction
    review:


              Standing Rock lawsuit update        
    SUBHEAD: Army Corps of Engineers sent back to analyze the environmental justice of the Dakota Access pipeline.

    By Yessenia Funes on 3 August 2017 for Yes Magazine -
    (http://www.yesmagazine.org/people-power/standing-rock-lawsuit-started-a-year-ago-heres-where-we-are-now-20170803)


    Image above: More than 380 tribes around the world came forward to stand with the water protectors. Photo by Vlad Tchompalov.From original article.

    On July 27, 2016, the Standing Rock Sioux filed a lawsuit against the Army Corps of Engineers for authorizing the construction of the 1,172-mile Dakota Access pipeline. Just over a year later, the project has been completed and carries crude oil from North Dakota’s Bakken oil fields to an export terminal in Illinois. The case is still pending, and continues to be the tribe’s last hope to protect its water and land.

    The lawsuit alleged that authorization of the pipeline violated the Clean Water Act, Rivers and Harbors Act, and the National Environmental Policy Act by failing to adequately conduct an efficient environmental assessment and skipping an environmental impact statement (EIS) altogether.

    “If history is to repeat itself, it doesn’t look good for us,” says Standing Rock Sioux Tribe Chairman Dave Archambault II. “But that doesn’t mean we don’t have hope.”

    The lawsuit has now been joined by the Cheyenne River Sioux and the Yankton and Oglala Sioux tribes, but at its heart, the case remains the same since its initial filing, said lead attorney Jan Hasselman, who represents the Standing Rock Sioux on behalf of nonprofit environmental law firm Earthjustice.

    He’s been arguing that the $3.8 billion energy project ignores treaty rights and needs further environmental review. The goal is that U.S. District Court Judge James E. Boasberg will rule in favor of an EIS and pause pipeline operations indefinitely, and, ultimately, stop them completely.

    In December, pipeline opponents almost secured the EIS under former President Barack Obama when the Army Corps of Engineers announced it would prepare the statement and not permit the pipeline to cross beneath the Lake Oahe crossing on the Missouri River, an area of cultural, religious, and spiritual significance to the tribe.

    It was a near victory. With the EIS secured, the court shelved the lawsuit, but there was more bubbling beneath the surface. Dakota Access launched a counter lawsuit once the Obama administration requested the EIS, and Donald Trump’s presidential inauguration loomed on the horizon. The lawyers, the tribe, and even the court knew the situation could change drastically.

    “The court was pretty explicit that this could be undone,” Hasselman said. And it was.

    Trump rescinded the EIS and issued the final easement across Lake Oahe in February. Immediately, the attorneys amended their initial complaint to include the final easement. Things moved along quickly from there, Hasselman explained. For the first time, the tribe had something concrete to contest, not something they were asking the courts to prevent.

    “We were finally able to put those environmental review issues and treaty issues up front and center,” Hasselman said. Until then, the case was essentially in “pause mode.”

    Then in June, Judge Boasberg found that the Corps had not sufficiently considered the pipeline’s environmental effects or environmental justice impacts when issuing its permit, and remanded the case back to the EIS process to reconsider its analysis. This is the first time Earthjustice is aware of such an environmental justice ruling.

    Boasberg’s recent decision offers DAPL’s opponents hope, but a favorable outcome is anything but assured. A pipeline has never before been stopped with a lawsuit, Hasselman said. “The legal and regulatory infrastructure is badly broken.

    You just don’t have the big overarching federal permits for a crude oil pipeline that you have in a lot of other contexts.” Unlike natural gas pipelines, the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission regulates a pipeline’s terms and conditions of transport, but not its actual construction and operation.

    Earthjustice didn’t take up the case because it believed the court held the answer but, rather, because it recognized the political power such a case could build. To that end, it has surpassed expectations.

    “What I had in mind was substantially more modest than what happened,” Hasselman said. He had hoped that 50 people would show up to court and they’d end up on the evening news. He wasn’t expecting the iconic fight for indigenous sovereignty that Standing Rock has become.

    The Dakota Access pipeline is now a matter of global interest. More than 380 tribes around the world—from New Zealand’s Māori to the Ecuadorian Amazon’s Kichwa—came forward to stand with the water protectors. “That’s a very significant time in history: when the tribes come together collectively and unite and say, Enough is enough,” Archambault said.

    The tribe’s effort became a movement with the support of spirit and prayer camps outside the reservation—including the Sacred Stone and Oceti Sakowin camps—and a 1,500-mile run to Washington, D.C., in which about 30 Native American youth delivered a petition with more than 140,000 signatures to the Army Corps headquarters demanding it halt the pipeline’s construction.

    Although this attention hasn’t influenced the lawsuit, Hasselman said, it legitimized the movement. Once the world set its eyes on Standing Rock, it could no longer ignore that the historic violent treatment of indigenous people isn’t a thing of the past—it continues today.

    Now? Hasselman thinks they have a shot. “We have an uphill struggle in persuading the court to shut down the pipeline while the remand process is underway, and we have an uphill struggle persuading the Army Corps to do a legitimate and appropriate analysis on remand, but we’re all working 24/7 to make that happen,” he said.

    Judge Boasberg is set to decide in September whether to pause pipeline operations while the Corps continues its review, and court proceedings are ongoing as both parties make their arguments. Until then, the tribe will see its challengers in court.

    See also:
    Ea O Ka Aina: DAPL battle not over 6/15/17
    Ea O Ka Aina: Defense contractors fought NoDAPL 5/27/17
    Ea O Ka Aina: Tribes divest DAPL Bankers 2/13/17
    Ea O Ka Aina: Veterans defending NoDAPL 2/11/17
    Ea O Ka Aina: Army Corps okays DAPL Easement  2/8/17
    Ea O Ka Aina: Trump orders go on DAPL EIS 2/3/17
    Ea O Ka Aina: Water Protectors pipeline resistance 2/1/17 
    Ea O Ka Aina: Force a full EIS on DAPL 1/27/17
    Ea O Ka Aina: Missile launcher at Standing Rock 1/19/17
    Ea O Ka Aina: Lockdown at Trans-Pecos Pipeline 1/10/17
    Ea O Ka Aina: Standing Rock has changed us 12/9/16
    Ea O Ka Aina: As Standing Rock celebrates... 12/5/16
    Ea O Ka Aina: Army Corps denies easement 12/4/16
    Ea O Ka Aina: My Whole Heart is With You 12/2/16
    Ea O Ka Aina: The Loving Containment of Courage 12/1/16
    Ea O Ka Aina: The Beginning is Near 12/1/16
    Ea O Ka Aina: Feds to shutdown NoDAPL Camp 11/25/16
    Ea O Ka Aina: NoDAPL people are going to die 11/23/16
    Ea O Ka Aina: Hundreds of vets to join NoDAPL 11/22/16
    Ea O Ka Aina: Obama must support Standing Rock 11/21/16
    Ea O Ka Aina: Trump's pro oil stance vs NoDaPL 11/15/16
    Ea O Ka Aina: Kauai NoDAPL Demonstration 11/12/16
    Ea O Ka Aina: Obama to Betray Standing Rock 11/12/16
    Ea O Ka Aina: Trump impact on Standing Rock 11/12/16
    Ea O Ka Aina: Ann Wright on Standing Rock 11/8/16
    Ea O Ka Aina: Turning Point at Standing Rock 11/6/16
    Ea O Ka Aina: Jackson Browne vs DAPL owner 11/5/16
    Democracy Now: Boycott of DAPL Owner's Music Festival
    Ea O Ka Aina: World responds to NoDAPL protests 11/5/16
    Ea O Ka Aina: NoDAPL victory that was missed 11/5/16
    Ea O Ka Aina: DAPL hid discovery of Sioux artifacts 11/5/16
    Ea O Ka Aina: Dakota Access Pipeline will leak 11/5/16
    Ea O Ka Aina: Route of the Dakota Access Pipeline 11/4/16
    Ea O Ka Aina: Sanders calls for stopping DAPL 11/4/16
    Ea O Ka Aina: Obama hints at DAPL rerouting 11/3/16
    Ea O Ka Aina: New military attack on NODAPL 11/3/16
    Ea O Ka Aina: How to Support NoDAPL 11/3/16
    Unicorn Riot: Tweets from NoDAPL 11/2/16
    Ea O Ka Aina: Standing Rock & the Ballot Box 10/31/16
    Ea O Ka Aina: NoDAPL reclaim new frontline 10/24/16
    Ea O Ka Aina: How far will North Dakota go? 10/23/16
    Ea O Ka Aina: Amy Goodman "riot" charge dropped 10/17/16
    Ea O Ka Aina: Amy Goodwin to face "Riot Charge" 10/16/16
    Ea O Ka Aina: Shutdown of all tar sand pipelines 10/11/16
    Ea O Ka Aina: Why Standing Rock is test for Oabama 10/8/16
    Ea O Ka Aina: Why we are Singing for Water 10/8/16
    Ea O Ka Aina: Labor's Dakota Access Pipeline Crisis 10/3/16
    Ea O Ka Aina: Standing Firm for Standing Rock 10/3/16
    Ea O Ka Aina: Contact bankers behind DAPL 9/29/16
    Ea O Ka Aina: NoDAPL demo at Enbridge Inc 9/29/16
    Ea O Ka Aina: Militarized Police raid NoDAPL 9/28/16
    Ea O Ka Aina: Stop funding of Dakota Access Pipeline 9/27/16
    Ea O Ka Aina: UN experts to US, "Stop DAPL Now!" 9/27/16
    Ea O Ka Aina: No DAPL solidarity grows 9/21/16
    Ea O Ka Aina: This is how we should be living 9/16/16
    Ea O Ka Aina: 'Natural Capital' replacing 'Nature' 9/14/16
    Ea O Ka Aina: The Big Difference at Standing Rock 9/13/16
    Ea O Ka Aina: Jill Stein joins Standing Rock Sioux 9/10/16
    Ea O Ka Aina: Pipeline temporarily halted 9/6/16
    Ea O Ka Aina: Native Americans attacked with dogs 9/5/16
    Ea O Ka Aina: Mni Wiconi! Water is Life! 9/3/16
    Ea O Ka Aina: Sioux can stop the Pipeline 8/28/16
    Ea O Ka Aina: Officials cut water to Sioux 8/23/16




    .

              Lehua Island rodenticide info        
    SUBHEAD: Site available with links to articles, research and  testimony letters about the aerial drop.

    By Kawai Warren on 5 August 2017 in Island Breath -
    (http://islandbreath.blogspot.com/2017/08/lehua-island-rodenticide-info.html)


    Image above: There is no question that the introduction of rats, by humans, to Hawaii has been a disasters, especially for places like Lehua with ground nesting birds. Poisoning mammals may not directly kill birds but it may kill mammals like monk seals and whales near the shores where poison reaches the water.  From (http://www.landcareresearch.co.nz/publications/newsletters/kararehe-kino/kararehe-kino-issue-19/which-toxin-is-best-for-eradicating-rodents).

    A new website is now live for anyone wanting quick links to articles, research and public testimony letters about the Lehua aerial drop. The link is (https://www.lehua-island-hawaii-conservation.org/).

    It is a resource for concerned residents, fishermen, journalists and scientists who need reliable information about the project.

    The site states in part:

    LEHUA ISLAND, 18 miles from Kaua'i in western Hawaii, is a rare and pristine State Wildlife Sanctuary. It harbors Federally-listed endangered and threatened species such as monk seals, green sea turtles, and three species of endangered birds.

    Endangered loggerhead turtles have been sighted, and a rare species of reef coral (Cosinaraea wellsi) has been reported at a depth of 120 ft. Whales, dolphins, manta rays and eagle rays frequent the area. A native Hawaiian subsistence community of Ni'ihauans, 3/4 mile from Lehua, catches fish and ama crab in Lehua's waters to feed their families.

    Starting August 8, 2017, the state Department of Land and Natural Resources and US Fish and Wildlife intend to drop approximately 11.5 tons of diphacinone rodenticide on Lehua Island.

    The diphacinone rodenticide will enter the coastal waters below the high tide line, resulting in an unknown level of collateral damage to non-target species within this precious marine and cultural ecosystem.

    In their agency comment letters, NOAA, the EPA, Hawaii Department of Health, and many scientists have expressed concern about the lack of baseline, Lehua-specific data to justify the poison drop, as well as lack of a rigorous monitoring commitment and enforcement mechanisms for the proposed biosecurity acitivities.

    The EPA urged DLNR to conduct effective consultation with the local Hawaiian and marine community. Yet, two native Hawaiian organizations and a representative of OHA submitted comment letters and an Opposition Statement describing environmental justice issues and lack of inclusion in decisionmaking.

    A public meeting called by DLNR to announce the Final Environmental Assessment for the aerial drop was met with intense community outrage.

    In 2009 DLNR had conducted a very similar aerial drop of diphacinone on Lehua that failed in its rodent eradication goal. Mortalities that followed included two whales and a large-scale fish die off that agencies claimed were not related to the aerial rodenticide drop.

    Nevertheless, following the 2009 diphacinone aerial drop, the head of Hawaii Department of Agriculture's Pesticide Branch, prior to his retirement, directed staff "not to issue aerial application permits that might result in pellets entering into marine ecosystems until the EPA develops study protocols for such ecosystems."

    This Archive provides quick access links to official source documents, research reports and other official information for those wanting to learn more about the concerns raised in the Lehua aerial rodenticide operation.

    The Archive was assembled through the input of scientists, legal researchers, policy watchdogs and others concerned about the lack of public awareness about this project, questionable statements made by agency staff, and significant omissions within the Environmental Assessment documents approved by the project's state and federal agencies.

    See also:
    Ea O Ka Aina: Impact of Lehua rat poisoning 6/8/17
    Ea O Ka Aina: Navy operation coincides with fishkill 3/18/09
    .

              The Other Great Emancipator        
    Four thousand miles away from a tiny log cabin in the Kentucky woods, another Great Emancipator was born 200 years ago today.

    Abraham Lincoln freed the slaves, corrected a 250-year-old injustice and set the nation on the path to the Inaguration of President Barack Obama.

    But Charles Darwin freed human minds from the tyranny of religion, crowned two centuries of the Enlightenment, and ushered in the era of scientific reason.

    So celebrate Darwin Day, and rejoice that our new President's vow to restore the primacy of science and facts honors both Great Emancipators.
              The Crime of a Two-Tiered Justice System        
    In the context of the vapors experienced by the Beltway fainting virgins at the prospect of prosecuting torturers and murderers for, you know, torturing and murdering, Glenn Greenwald brings us an example of the kind of justice Smirky/Darth and their minions should be receiving.

    Homeless man gets 15 years for stealing $100

    A homeless man robbed a Louisiana bank and took a $100 bill. After feeling remorseful, he surrendered to police the next day. The judge sentenced him to 15 years in prison.

    Roy Brown, 54, robbed the Capital One bank in Shreveport, Louisiana in December 2007. He approached the teller with one of his hands under his jacket and told her that it was a robbery.

    The teller handed Brown three stacks of bill but he only took a single $100 bill and returned the remaining money back to her. He said that he was homeless and hungry and left the bank.

    The next day he surrendered to the police voluntarily and told them that his mother didn't raise him that way.

    Brown told the police he needed the money to stay at the detox center and had no other place to stay and was hungry.

    In Caddo District Court, he pleaded guilty. The judge sentenced him to 15 years in prison for first degree robbery.

    Fifteen years for feeling remorseful about taking a hundred-dollar bill. By that logic, 4,200-plus counts of pre-meditated murder ought to get Dubya and Dick 10 or 12 lifetimes hanging from a hook in the ceiling by their scrotums.

    Greenwald goes into shameful detail about the American criminal injustice system's ludicrous over-sentencing of the powerless and its passes for the powerful. But here's the point:

    Under all circumstances, arguing that high political officials should be immunized from prosecution when they commit felonies such as illegal eavesdropping and torture would be both destructive and wrong [not to mention, in the case of the latter crimes, a clear violation of a treaty which the U.S. (under Ronald Reagan) signed and thereafter ratified].

    But what makes it so much worse, so much more corrupted, is the fact that this "ignore-the-past-and-forget-retribution" rationale is invoked by our media elites only for a tiny, special class of people -- our political leaders -- while the exact opposite rationale ("ignore their lame excuses, lock them up and throw away the key") is applied to everyone else. That, by definition, is what a "two-tiered system of justice" means and that, more than anything else, is what characterizes (and sustains) deeply corrupt political systems. That's the two-tiered system which, for obvious reasons, our political and media elites are now vehemently arguing must be preserved.

    Read the whole thing.
              2015 Dodge Challenger, Improved... 2015 Dodge Charger, Not So Much        
    Hello everyone!  Even though it's been a record long time since my last post, I'm not going to start off with excuses.  I will, however, plug the play I'm in that's coming up in the first two weekends of May.  If you're going to be in the Tillsonburg area during that time, come check out Plaza Suite, an old comedy by Neil Simon.  It's three one acts that take place in the same hotel room at the Plaza Hotel.  I play a hip, freewheeling movie producer who's come back to town to hit on his old high school girlfriend.  I know, classy as ever.  But as much as I try, I'll never match the class exhibited in the the new updates Dodge has applied to its two most exciting cars with back seats.
    Let's start with the elephant in the room.  The 2015 Charger, when you look at it from the front, looks like an amalgam of the Avenger and the Dart.  Both of those vehicles have their merits - the Avenger is cheap second hand and the Dart is an Alfa Romeo underneath (albeit one that asked for seconds at the pasta trough resulting in a poor finish on track day) - but neither is a car that I want to serve as a stylistic inspiration for Dodge's awesome muscle sedan.  Luckily, the 2011 redesign still holds on throughout the rest of the 2015 car's sheet metal.

    The 2015 interior is pretty close to what it was before.  The notable exception is the steering wheel, which looks to be all new.  Also, the button arrangement on the center stack look to have been sleeked up somewhat and the shifter knob is a little more chunky looking.  Definitely more Dodge than Audi.

    The good news for this year's update seems to all come from the Challenger side of the camp.  Aside from the awesome news that the Challenger is getting the 8-speed auto across the board, this jumbo sized pony car (it really hasn't qualified for pony car status since the early 1970's) is getting a much needed interior refresh. 

    Well, refresh doesn't do it justice actually.  The looks like every aspect of the inside of this car has been updated and improved!  No longer a sea of hard black plastic and minimalistic style, the new interior is now as gorgeous as the exterior.  I actually feel bad for anyone who has to sit in an old Challenger now.  So, with that being said, anyone who owns a 2008-2014 challenger and now wants to get rid of it I am more than happy to take the burden off your hands.  I know, it's a tall order to ask of me, but I have broad shoulders.

    Anyway, don't take my word for it, take a look for yourself!  Both of the following links have write ups and photo galleries.  

    Here's the 2015 Charger and here's the 2015 Challenger.

    Let me know what you think!  I've been a big fan of both these cars since they were launched (2006 and 2008 respectively) and I am more than happy to swap view points on their strengths and weaknesses.

    TTFN!        
              Muslim Liberals Caught in No Man's Land        
    Originally published in Huffington Post
    Muslim Liberals Caught in No Man's Land
    "Islam is the motherload of bad ideas." - Sam Harris
    "That's just a fact." - Bill Maher
    When the host of Real Time on HBO, Bill Maher, tag-teamed with 'new atheist' Sam Harris, to lead an assault on Islam last week, it was Batman-to-be Ben Affleck who stood up as the inexplicable first line of defense against the disjointed attack. Rounding out the panel of record, was New York Times activist Nicholas Kristof and Republican-lite Michael Steele. The debate - in which, of course no Muslims participated - quickly went viral. In the messy aftermath, Sam Harris even claimed that the media reaction vindicated him and proved his point. 
    While Maher and his sidekick, Harris - and for that matter the entire Dawkinsian crew - may not be the bigots that Affleck accused them of being, they certainly should not feel any sense of self-absorbed vindication. They are not emissaries of the truth nor do they represent the vanguard of neo-enlightenment. Rather they come across as pseudo-intellectual bullies driven by a vain desire for celebrity, feigning any concern for the 'victims of Islam' they cite in remarks branching from their central diatribe against the religion. In effect, they silence the very Muslim liberals and champions who are leading the charge for a more just, equal, and tolerant (i.e. liberal, I guess) Muslim world, forcing on them a Faustian and false choice between identity and values. 
    Just today, Malala Yousafzai, the ardent campaigner for girls' education from Pakistan and a proud Muslim, was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize. In fact, five of the last twelve recipients of the Nobel Peace Prize have been Muslim. These five alongside millions of others seek to promote progressive and positive change in the Muslim world. They constitute everyday Muslims, not necessarily Islam incarnate. The reason this distinction is important is that treating as equal the Muslim world and the ideology of Islam is a misdirection that confuses an evolving 1,400-year philosophy with a disaggregated non-body politic of 1.5 billion people. As I wrote on these pagesseveral weeks ago, it does not mean ignoring a problem but diagnosing it accurately: 
    "There is no crisis in Islam. But, there is, conversely and unmistakably, an existential crisis (or crises) in the Muslim world...The approach of religious discourse divorces us from what is the larger crisis facing the Muslim world, which is one of being mired in a political, social and economic malaise, characterized by hollow leadership and disintegrating states, an environment into which extremism seeps."
    Malala and others are the vanguard in the fight being waged by Muslim liberals, one that is just unfolding, and which contests a broad range of injustices, inequalities, and intolerances in Muslim-majority countries. Yet, these individuals are also caught in a tripartite 'battle' that is ongoing: within the West, within the Muslim world and between the West and Muslim world. These battles are not clear-cut by any means, but each places the Muslim liberal effectively in no man's land. 
    Within the West, we are witnessing the rise of xenophobic and anti-immigration sentiment broadly in the conservative movement, and in the United States, most acutely, on the fringes of the Republican Party. This has been exacerbated by the War on Terror, in which, domestically, the Muslim constitutes the ubiquitous bogeyman. So mainstream is this sentiment, that a series such as Homeland entertains many Muslim Americans, even though it not-so-subtly portends that every Muslim from a secular journalist to a CIA agent could be a threat, simply because he or she is Muslim. More tangibly, in terms of everyday consequences, each new mosque in the U.S. now faces anti-Sharia protestors, including from sitting politicians (who conveniently forget the meaning of the First Amendment). 
    In Europe, however, while there has been similar sentiment from the conservative side of the spectrum, such as from political parties such as the UKIP or BNP in the United Kingdom, it has often dovetailed with a similarly xenophobic liberal view, such as that espoused by Sam Harris. Much akin to the convergence of the liberal humanitarian perspective with the neoconservative movement in recent years (e.g. prior to the Iraq War in 2003), this neo-liberalism is partly a revivalist movement of the White Man's Burden. Overall, within this battle, Islam is portrayed as a flawed essence, and there can be no equivocation. When an assured liberal such as Reza Aslan appears on CNN, he is forced to choose between Islam and liberalism, and asked to re-confirm that indeed Islam is the threat. Meanwhile, the anchors (on CNN) fail to realize that this would mean he would be asserting that he himself (and many members of his family) have an essentialized evilness about them. Whether or not a person like Reza Aslan is liberal is cast aside due to this inability to disavow Islam.
    Yet, it is not just Muslims on the American side of the Atlantic who are caught up in this game. In the Muslim world's own multi-dimensional civil war, we see hyper-nationalists and Islamists battling it out, overlaid with a layer of sectarian strife. Muslim liberals - a term used loosely without weighing the religiosity of individuals - are often the last ones in the streets pushing for open societies. Take the example of the exemplary Alaa Abdel Fattah in Egypt, who, fresh off from being released from prison on bail after being charged for encouraging a demonstration, had his nomination for the prestigious Sakharov Prize revoked. He, like all Muslims, inevitably faced the pro-Israel test, and (two weeks ago) failed. Already under threat of condemnation from within their countries, Muslim liberals within Muslim countries are abandoned in their hour of need by the haughtier-than-though 'critics' in the West. Muslim liberals may be fighting for democracy, against gender discrimination, and for the rights of minorities, but they likely have not reconciled with Zionism. Ask Malala for her views on Israel: you may not like the answer
    Finally, since 9/11 (and before as well), Western countries have increasingly been at war in the Middle East and within other majority-Muslim countries. The recent strikes against ISIS are just one recent example. In this battle, again the Muslim liberal is caught in no man's land. On one hand, he or she will surely be in favor of crushing the cancer that is ISIS but not by any means necessary nor will this mean broad support for the securitization of the interaction between the West and the Muslim world. When a recent video surfaced on Fox News from the Harvard campus, where many students alleged that the U.S. had a more detrimental footprint, overall, on the world stage than ISIS, the headline read, "Twisted Ivy: Harvard students say US bigger threat to world peace than ISIS." Imagine, a Muslim making the same statements as in the video. Game over. 
    When Bill Maher and Sam Harris pontificate from their plush perches, criminalizing a faith, which has 1.5 billion adherents, they think they are doing the world a big service. Nothing could be further from the truth. It should be pointed that Muslim countries are not uniquely in crisis and that broadly there are many countries in crisis in the developing world. In addition, America's homophobia is only now beginning to subside for example, and in many ways is still real (so no real claim can be made of some type of civilizational superiority). And many of Burma's Buddhist monks would have something to say about religious militancy being the dominion of Islamists only. Nevertheless, there are indeed a myriad of unique problems within the Muslim world, which is in a deep crisis. Yet, there are also countless Muslim leaders, intellectuals, clerics, philanthropists, and others, facing these problems, and trying to stand-up to illiberal phenomena in their communities and societies. They already are well aware of the challenges in front of them and do not need lectures from people far-removed from the very violence they face. 
    Maher's (and others) self-titillating orgies of intellectual masturbation demonstrate a total lack of awareness. Perhaps they'll be comforted by the controversy they spawn, indulging their egos as they eye retweets and dollar signs. As for the Muslim liberals on the frontlines? Once again they are caught in No Man's Land.
    Original Link: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/taufiq-rahim/muslim-liberals-caught-in_b_5965546.html

              Malala Yousafzai and the Missing Brown Savior Complex        
    On October 9, 2012, a Taliban gunman accosted a bus carrying 15 year-old Malala Yousafzai and her schoolmates, and coldly shot them at close range. The Tehrik-e-Taliban Pakistan not only claimed responsibility for the blatant assassination attempt of the teenage education activist, but as it emerged that Malala would survive the attack, the movement also reiterated its desire to kill her. Miraculously through the efforts of friends and family, the local community in Swat Valley where she is from and where she was shot, and the Pakistani army that airlifted her to Peshawar, Malala Yousafzai survived (as did the other victims). Given the seriousness of her condition, it was imperative she was treated by the best doctors, and a generous gesture by the Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi allowed her to be flown by air ambulance to England for major surgery. Fast forward just one year later, Malala has recovered and is even more emphatic in her message against the Taliban, promoting the empowerment of young women like her across Pakistan, and all around the world. And expectedly, the global media, including The Daily Show's Jon Stewart, have been celebrating her courage (perhaps caught in the moment of it all).

    Great story, right? And what could be wrong about the alleged 'overexposure' of a young girl expressing words of peace and fighting for girls' education against a religious patriarchy? Apparently a lot. In fact, in Pakistan and in her hometown, her global coronation is treated with derision: "Malala is spoiling Pakistan's name around the world." Others have more sinister accusations of a CIA conspiracy involving both Malala and the gunman, claiming the entire affair is a Western plot. Yet, in recent days, an article written by a blogger in July on Huffington Post has been making the rounds on social media, entitled, "Malala Yousafzai and the White Saviour Complex." It argues, "Please, spare us the self-righteous and self-congratulatory message that is nothing more than propaganda that tells us that the West drops bombs to save girls like Malala."

    The truth is there is no white savior coming for Pakistan or for any Muslim country, the vast majority of which are characterised by pernicious politics, inequitable economics, and irrational intolerance. Lecturing the chattering classes about geopolitical realties and distributing treatises on Western imperialism won't change anything. Fundamentally it will only be the indigenous leadership - helped or not helped by outsiders - that will drive change. Yet, when leaders do emerge, it seems that the local media (and now social media) are pre-occupied with tearing them down rather than building them up. People instead squander their energy on misguided diatribes, as the case of Malala has unfortunately shown. The real reason that the 'white savior complex' even is relevant is that we fail to champion the very 'brown saviors' in our midst.

    Malala Yousafzai was thrust into the spotlight after her initial attack, which was so jarring that all Pakistani leaders came out in strong condemnation. Then Pakistani President, Asif Ali Zardari - himself a questionable character to say the least - labelling the attack as one against "all civilized people." Prior to the attack, Malala had rose to prominence as an activist, encouraged by her father, for girls education and against the policies and values of the Taliban, which was why she was targeted in the first place. Without picking up a gun, her message was considered a threat to their movement, which is amazing in it of itself. Yet, it was on July 12 earlier this year, speaking on her birthday to the United Nations that Malala brought tears to the eyes of millions of people around the world. Having remarkably recovered from her wounds (and having undergone partial facial reconstruction), and still facing death threats, Malala stood steadfast in front of a global audience, and spoke with fortitude and confidence: "The terrorists thought that they would change my aims and stop my ambitions but nothing changed in my life, except this: weakness, fear and hopelessness died. Strength, power and courage was born."

    It was such a powerful moment, that almost every international news outlet carried the speech of this young woman live across the world. And for the first time in a long time, the Pakistani and Muslim in the spotlight was not an extremist but someone standing up to extremism. The plaudits continued to come, especially in the last few weeks, as Malala released a book about her experience and was awarded the prestigious Sakharov Prize from the European Union. In fact, she was the rumored favorite for the Nobel Peace Prize, which in the end was awarded to the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons, in a surprise but perhaps deserving win. Of course, the Western media in particular have a penchant for over-hyping (if not over-milking) and over-sensationalizing such stories of heroism. And it will be very difficult for Malala to not only live up to such hype but also to prevent the perception that she is over-shadowing other deserving heroes. Yet, is that not the story of all figures of change who inspire us? Was Nelson Mandela really the only Black leader in South Africa's prisons? Was Martin Luther King Jr. the only individual marching in the South? Was Aung San Suu Kyi the only fighter for freedom in Burma?

    It does seem increasingly, however, that Malala is a leader denied a strong constituency back home. It is easy to dismiss the allegations that she is a CIA agent - although the photo-op with the Obama's won't help - as well as the gloating of Taliban supporters after she was not awarded the Nobel Prize. Yet it is harder to dismiss the cacophony of criticism in Pakistan, in Swat Valley, and on the social media pages of Pakistanis, and for that matter, Muslims from around the world. As one government official said: "Everyone knows about Malala, but they do not want to affiliate with her." The primary complaints include the following:
    • This is another example of the West trying to portray themselves as a savior of the East. 
    • Malala is a secular heroine not a Muslim heroine. 
    • While her case is tragic there are other victims who deserve prominence. 
    • The crimes of the West through drones and in Iraq and Afghanistan, far outweigh the crimes of the Taliban. 
    • This is an effort of the West to try to avoid its own complicity in the situation in Pakistan that led to Malala's shooting. 
    As with most disinformation campaigns, this one is based on kernels of truth. For starters, the world does neglect the stories of deserving others. One such example would be of the tour-de-force Pakistani social worker  Parveen Rehman who was shot dead in Karachi earlier this year. Additionally, it has been the Western media that has largely driven the popular support for Malala globally; that, however, has to be attributed to the dismal failure of the Pakistani media to not do so instead (in my humble opinion). Finally, and the most valid critique is that the story of Malala should not negate the very pivotal role the United States and the West has played and continues to play in creating the current perilous conditions in Pakistan and in contributing to the deaths of innocents there, and in other countries. 

    Firstly, U.S. policy has been heavily involved in the rise of the Taliban in Pakistan, which it tacitly supported alongside Saudi Arabia and Pakistan's intelligence service in the mid-1990s. Moreover, the United States and Saudi Arabia (and some other Western and Muslim powers) cooperated to support radical jihadism (even printing textbooks to that effect for Afghanistan) and Islamism as a bulwark against the Soviet Union and communism. In fact, Israel also supported the radical group Hamas as a counterweight to the secular Fatah movement of then Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat. Yes, the world was and is screwed up, and the powers of the world have much complicity in that. 

    Secondly, and more importantly, the military operations carried out by the U.S. in particular in Pakistan, Afghanistan, and Iraq have led to thousands of deaths of innocent people in recent years. These actions have largely gone unpunished and the victims have been forgotten. Certainly it is not just the Taliban that are killing and the world cannot dispense justice selectively. 

    Does saying all of that make Malala Yousafzai any less of a hero (or heroine)? Is her courage dimmed by the crimes of others? Is her movement for the empowerment of young girls in Pakistan any less important? Of course not. Criticisms of the West will bring no one closer to emancipation. And it cannot mask the very pure fact that today's purveyors of disaster and death in the world also include Muslims.

    Who bombed the church in Peshawar slaughtering 85 worshippers? Who attacked Westgate Mall in Nairobi killing dozens of innocents? Who murders dozens of men, women and children in Iraq every week? When a Muslim rises up - a so-called brown savior - to fight such crimes and the movements behind them, we should put him or her on our shoulders and not try to chase that person into the darkness. There is no shame in admitting Brown and Muslim guilt in the world's crimes, and it does not negate the wider reality and context around the violence that does occur. In fact, our fear of partial guilt in particular should not misguidedly cause us to throw out the very sparse examples of (counter-) leadership in Muslim countries that emerge and strike fear in the heart of radical extremists. 

    It has become far too easy on all sides to blame the other rather than introspect inward. Above all, instead of blaming the West for its 'white savior complex' maybe it's time to develop our own brown savior complex to save ourselves from ourselves. 



              The (Counter?)Revolution in #Egypt will be Televised (and Tweeted)        
    Around midnight in Cairo the night of Tuesday, July 2, millions of people in Egypt awaited the President of the Republic, Mohammad Morsi, to respond to the 48-hour ultimatum delivered by the country's military on Monday: resolve your differences with the protestors or we will do it for you. With the deadline fast approaching, and due to hit at 4:30pm local time the next day, Morsi rejected the challenge by the military in a tweet. Then, he came on television and delivered what was the most important speech in not just his life but in the history of the Muslim Brotherhood movement he represents. And it was a spectacular failure. While not as long-winded as the two-and-a-half hour speech he had given just days earlier - akin to a State of the Union - it was just as hollow. His near constant use of the word 'legitimacy' began to elicit uncontrollable laugher in many corners (with the usage count of the word at around 75 in the speech). With millions of Egyptians on the streets across the country - some in support of him but many if not most in opposition - and the military's ultimatum in the background, Morsi had seemingly put the final nail in his own coffin.

    Just 30 months after the ousting of the dictator for the past 30 years, Hosni Mubarak, street protests in Egypt culminated on Wednesday night in a coup d'etat, effectively overturning the 14 democratic elections since February 11, 2011 (the total voting cycles for the parliament, presidency and constitution). Indeed, it was broader than a coup d'etat, as the Tamarod (rebellion) movement that brought millions of people to the streets was a grassroots uprising that gathered millions of signatures from ordinary Egyptians, and more significantly, managed to coalesce a previously disparate and dispirited opposition. Additionally, deposed President Mohammad Morsi had governed incompetently and non-inclusively, which seemingly left the invitation open to change. Yet, what transpired this week, especially in the final sequence of events, could be the initial salvo of a counter-revolution 2.0, potentially endangering the process of democratization in Egypt for years to come.

    While things seemingly have not changed that much in Egypt, and in many ways have gotten worse, a lot has transpired. Following the departure of Mubarak and his gang from the scene, the Supreme Council of the Armed Forces (SCAF) took charge of managing the country's affairs. It took nearly a year to hold parliamentary elections. When it did happen, in late 2011-early 2012 the Brotherhood's party (the Freedom & Justice Party or FJP) took 38% of the vote, followed closely by the more conservative Salafist party, Al Nour, which took 28%. Given that this body would determine the fate of the new constitution (and the assembly to draft it), the fact that it was dominated by 'Islamists' already meant the new era of Egypt was handed a poisoned chalice in the eyes of many. Six months later, in June 2012, the Presidential elections saw a run-off between a former Prime Minister but tainted 'remnant' of the old Mubarak regime, Ahmed Shafiq, and Mohammed Morsi (representing the Muslim Brotherhood). Morsi won, and with the backing of protests in the famed Tahrir Square, also managed to wrest plenty of executive authority from SCAF. Within two months, Morsi also seemed to assert civilian control over the military, with a shuffling of key positions in the defense establishment.

    Then on November 22, 2012, with full executive powers, and the parliament in limbo (due to pending court cases), Morsi assumed essentially legislative powers and declared himself immune from judicial oversight until a new constitution was formed. In essence that gave birth to the current movement (well at least the National Salvation Front that formed 2 days later and was a hodge-podge of opposition groups, including figures such as Mohamed El Baradei) which culminated in Morsi's removal from office this week. Morsi and the FJP then ham-fisted a constitution through a referendum, which garnered the support of 64% of the voting public. However, the process was not led by consensus and Morsi appeared to be increasingly marginalizing the judiciary, which many viewed as being too linked to the old regime, especially given that many senior judges were appointed by Hosni Mubarak (the judges had their own democracy movement in 2006 so not a unified group by any means). Yet for many in the opposition, the judiciary was still a check against Morsi and the Brotherhood's power. And there were also complaints about the ikhwanization of the state; given what transpired this week, this appeared not to have been the case.

    Nevertheless, the concentration of power by the Brotherhood and its non-inclusive method of governance as described above, could have overcome minor challenges from the opposition, if Morsi had enacted policies that improved the lives of everyday people. His approval rating had begun to drop dramatically, falling to 28% of the public just weeks before his overthrow. This was mainly due to the inability of the government to turnaround the economy, with 25% of Egyptians below the poverty line, unemployment on the rise, and the country's fiscal health on the decline. Meanwhile, his approach to foreign policy of aligning with the US, engaging with Iran, partnering with Qatar, and leading the charge on Syria, did little to assuage a frustrated public waiting for change at home in their daily lives that had yet to materialize. And sectarian clashes that mainly killed Shiites and Christians tarnished the impartial role the President was assumed to play, given that he was close to figures that were prone to incitement.

    In the backdrop of all of this, the Tamarod movement, which started just several months ago (in April), began to tap into the widespread anger and frustration. Gone was the gloss of a technocratic 'Islamist' party - a la the AKP in Turkey, who incidentally are having their own issues - replaced instead by the reality of the FJP in Egypt. And gone also was the mystique of a survivalist Brotherhood that was the David against the Goliath of the last half century; the Brotherhood was now the Goliath, and seemingly squandering the power that it had accumulated. The Tamarod activists claimed to have gathered 22 million signatures, in a country of 93 million people, which seems patently ridiculous for many demographic/logistical reasons (in the course of just two months). Nevertheless, their demands were clear, and principally centered on early Presidential elections (Morsi had served one of a four-year term). They were supported by umbrella opposition groups such as the National Salvation Front, April 6 Movement, and others, and with their deadline of June 30 for Morsi to respond coming fast, thousands and then millions began to fill Egypt's squares (some as noted in support of Morsi).

    By Wednesday, just prior to the removal of Morsi from power, several implications of what was transpiring were already clear. Firstly, the Tamarod movement, and subsequent mobilization demonstrated that there could be an organized opposition to Islamists in the 'new' Arab world, and that this secular alternative could mobilize numbers. This could have far-reaching consequences in other countries such as Tunisia, where Islamists like the Nahda Party hold sway, as well as eventually (in the longer-term) in autocratic countries where often the only strong opposition movements are bogeyman Islamists movements. Secondly, Morsi's reign had as noted above, dulled - as power does to any party - the shine of the Brotherhood. It has been noted, for example that the clashes that led to the separation of the West Bank & Gaza Strip, and undermined the Hamas victory in Palestinian elections, only emboldened Hamas instead of forcing the movement into the pubic accountability spotlight.

    Of course, in the euphoria of what the opposition was about to gain, the darkness just around the corner might have seemed far away. With millions on the street, and the military indicating a willingness to force itself on the scene as the arbitrator, Morsi offered a new constitutional process, a unity government of technocrats, and an accelerated schedule of new parliamentary elections but it was too little too late it seemed for the street, especially with the military now backing the activists' play. And so instead of a negotiated agreement with President Morsi, or a legal process through the courts, or any other process through civilian authorities, it was the military that removed Morsi from power. The crowds in Tahrir Square cheered but the supporters of the deposed President, in Nasr City (also in Cairo), jeered. In a carefully choreographed display, the civil secular state - with an associated roadmap essentially a reset of the revolutionary period - was re-established by three initial speeches: first by General Abdul Fatah al-Sisi, head of the armed forces (appointed by Morsi), second by the Grand Sheikh of Al Azhar, and third by the Coptic Pope. Short statements followed from a range of opposition figures, including a representative of Tamarod and El Baradei and the conservative Nour Party.

    If you are an opponent of the Muslim Brotherhood, this was indeed a victory. And given the direction that Egypt was going, if you are an Egyptian, you can only hope that this could lead to a more positive future. Whatever the case, however, the military re-takeover appears to also be a re-launch of the counter-revolution. The autocratic powers that be in the region were effusive and immediate in their praise of the military and the coup. More worryingly, was the systematic campaign of