Blogging is not truth, behavior is truth

Discuss political news items / current events.
msfreeh
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Re: Blogging is not truth, behavior is truth

Post by msfreeh »

Sunday, August 9, 2015
Prisoners' Justice Day march tomorrow at 4pm on Algonquin Territory / in Ottawa


FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE


http://tpcp-canada.blogspot.com/" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

Calls renewed for an end to solitary confinement and other prison policies
and practices that contribute to deaths in custody

August 9, 2015 (Algonquin Territory / Ottawa) – Prisoners’ Justice Day (PJD) emerged as a prisoner-initiated day of non-violent strike action to commemorate the death of Eddie Nalon in the segregation unit of Millhaven maximum-security penitentiary on August 10th 1974. It was first observed in 1975, and in 1976 the prisoners of Millhaven issued a communication calling for one-day hunger strikes in opposition to the use of solitary confinement and in support of prisoners’ rights, in memory of Eddie Nalon and Robert Landers, who also died alone in solitary confinement. Since then, PJD has become an internationally-recognized day of solidarity and action, both inside and outside prison walls, to commemorate deaths in custody and to demand justice for the human rights atrocities that states and their officials authorize and engage in.

Tomorrow, we will observe PJD for the 40th time because preventable deaths in custody, like that of Ashley Smith who died in a segregation cell at Grand Valley Institution in 2007, still occur. Despite occasional public outcries and government promises for much needed reforms to save lives, little has changed. While many Canadians were in tears at the images of Ashley’s treatment in prison, at least 321 prisoners died in federal penitentiaries from 2008 to 2014, according to Correctional Service of Canada and Public Safety Canada figures compiled by the Criminalization and Punishment Education Project. Between 2008-09 and 2010-11, 80 deaths were reported in provincial jails and prisons, where people continue to die. The recent deaths of Edward Snowshoe and Kinew James behind bars are a solemn and tragic reminder that Canada’s prisons disproportionately target, warehouse and harm indigenous people, part of the colonial legacy highlighted by the Truth and Reconciliation Commission. As they did four decades ago, prisons still kill and maim, still traumatize captives and captors alike during their time behind bars, and still greatly diminish the common humanity we all share.

It is not enough to shed tears and ask for change – we must demand it. A PJD march is taking place tomorrow at 4:00pm on Algonquin Territory / in Ottawa. It begins at the Jack Purcell Community Centre (320 Jack Purcell Lane). Following a land acknowledgement and brief introduction to PJD, demonstrators will proceed to the constituency office of Ontario Minister of Corrections and Community Safety Yasir Naqvi (109 Catherine Street). There, former prisoners from the Ottawa-Carleton Detention Centre (OCDC) and groups like the End Immigration Detention Network, which have been advocating for detainees held indefinitely in a maximum-security wing of the Lindsay jail, will talk about conditions and make demands concerning provincial prisons operated by the Government of Ontario. Marchers will then walk to Correctional Service of Canada national headquarters (340 Laurier Avenue West). Ex-prisoners and family members with loved ones behind bars will discuss living and dying in federal penitentiaries, and demand real change to uphold human rights and prevent deaths in facilities run by the Government of Canada going forward. The action concludes at the Human Rights Monument (at the corner of Elgin Street and Lisgar Street) where 40 seconds of silence will be observed to mark the past 40 years of inaction during which hundreds lost their lives while under the ‘care’ of Canada’s ‘correctional’ authorities.

Concerned members of the community are encouraged to participate in this non-violent action. Journalists are also welcome to attend.



OUR DEMANDS FOR #pjd2015

End the mass incarceration of indigenous peoples and minorities

End the use of solitary confinement

End prison crowding

End pre-trial, immigration and foreign worker detention

End the criminalization of political dissidents, sex workers, and those with mental health and substance (mis)-use issues



To arrange for media interviews with former prisoners,
relatives of current prisoners and their supporters contact:
Justin Piché, Criminalization and Punishment Education Project,
613-793-1093 or [email protected]

msfreeh
Level 34 Illuminated
Posts: 7755

Re: Blogging is not truth, behavior is truth

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http://fortunesociety.org" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

The Fortune Society
fortunesociety.org/
Staffed primarily by ex-offenders, the society is a not-for-profit community-based organization dedicated to educating the public about prisons, criminal justice ...
https://www.google.com/?gws_rd=ssl#hl=e ... ne+society" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

msfreeh
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Posts: 7755

Re: Blogging is not truth, behavior is truth

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New Brunswick, Irving company province
See link for full story

| September 16, 2015

http://pinetreewatchdog.org/new-brunswi ... -province/" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;


J D. Irving headquarters (tan building on left) dominates St. John, New Brunswick, where an Irving Oil sign stands at an entrance to the city.


J D. Irving headquarters (tan building on left) dominates St. John, New Brunswick, where an Irving Oil sign stands at an entrance to the city.

Editor’s note: This is the second story in a three-part series investigating the Irving corporate presence in Maine and New Brunswick and its implications for the state’s future.

SAINT JOHN, NEW BRUNSWICK -- If you cruise down the superhighway that crosses this Portland-sized industrial city, you will see Irving everywhere.

That big building rising up in the city center: home office for J.D. Irving's 15,000 employees.

Logo for seriesGo off the highway to grab a coffee at an Irving Oil gas station on Fairville Boulevard and across the street is Kent Building Supplies, a J.D. Irving company with 42 outlets employing 2,800 people in the Maritimes.

Drive a few streets away to look at the picturesque Reversing Falls. Across the tidal rapid is a huge J.D. Irving paper mill.

Head into the historic downtown -- known as Uptown -- and you'll pass the offices of Saint John's daily Telegraph-Journal, flagship of the Irving family’s 20 newspapers in the province, including three daily papers. One French-language daily and seven weekly papers in the province are owned by others.
Rail tank cars at the Irving Oil refinery, St. John, New Brunswick. Photo by Lance Tapley


Rail tank cars at the Irving Oil refinery, St. John, New Brunswick.

Those two tankers in Courtenay Bay? Irving Oil. That mammoth refinery not far away with 150 oil tanks. Of course, Irving Oil.

Just outside the city, directly on the Bay of Fundy, is Irving Oil's supertanker terminal, Canaport, which takes in 100 million barrels a year. Canaport also contains Irving’s liquefied natural gas (LNG) tanker terminal, a joint venture with Repsol, a Spanish company.

If you travel through the rest of the province, you can't fail to see many of the 1.8 million acres of J.D. Irving forest with their crops of even-aged trees, as well as many of the 2.6 million acres of public or "crown" land the company harvests for its three New Brunswick paper mills and eight sawmills.

Several books and a Canadian-government report have noted that this power over a province by one family is probably unparalleled in the developed world.

"Welcome to an oligarchy," quipped Gordon Dalzell, greeting a visitor to Saint John. He has spent years 15 years struggling with the Irving companies – successfully -- to make the city's air cleaner as a leader of the city’s Citizens Coalition for Clean Air. The refinery, he said, used to smell “like a match burning.”

In Maine, so far, only Aroostook County comes close to seeing this kind of Irving presence.
Shelly Mountain at Portage Lake, Maine.


"They own the northern part of the state," said Shelly Mountain, of Presque Isle, referring to J.D. Irving's influence on the forest economy there. An environmental activist, she's married to a logger.

But as described in Part 1 of this series, J.D Irving's recent aggressive lobbying of Maine state government on forestry and mining issues and Irving Oil's domination of Maine's wholesale petroleum-products market could suggest the beginnings of a New-Brunswick-like future for the state.

What would that mean? New Brunswick's Irving critics first point out that Irving domination has not made the province prosperous.

In terms of family income, it’s Canada's poorest province, according to the federal agency Statistics Canada, which recently reported that New Brunswick's population of 750,000 is continuing to shrink, attributing the decrease to a lack of jobs. J.D. Irving's sleek headquarters in Saint John is surrounded by neighborhoods with unpainted houses and crumbling sidewalks.

Whatever the reasons for New Brunswick's persistent poverty, the undisclosed profits made by the Irving family and its corporations haven’t resulted in a lot of tax receipts to support public services.

That's because, as several books have documented, the profits generally haven’t stayed in New Brunswick nor even in Canada, but instead have landed in family trusts set up years ago in Bermuda, which has no corporate income tax.

The Bermuda trusts and the Irving empire were largely assembled by the hard-charging business acumen of K.C. Irving, the larger-than-life patriarch who died in 1992. He established the Irving corporate practices that are followed closely to this day.

A central practice is "vertical integration," when the supply chain is owned wholly or partly by a business, creating tight control over the flow of raw materials, products and prices.

Vertical integration in J.D. Irving's Maine businesses, for example, means that the company owns woodlands, employs woodcutters and has railroads to transport wood to mills, where the wood is turned into pulp and paper or lumber.


This business system has resulted in Forbes magazine estimating that the two K.C. Irving sons, who possess most of the family wealth — James (who controls J.D. Irving) and Arthur (who controls Irving Oil) — are worth $12 billion between them. (That's in United States dollars. In the rest of this article the dollars cited are Canadian, which has been worth about 75 American cents in recent months.)

Government favors

The Irving companies not only have sent profits offshore, they also are aggressive in securing tax breaks and other governmental financial privileges. They're tough negotiators with both governments and other businesses.

A currently contentious governmental favor to Irving Oil is a limit on the Saint John property taxes paid on the giant Canaport LNG terminal, a limit that had to be agreed to by both city and province.

Canaport has not worked out well for Irving's partner Repsol, which says it has lost more than $1 billion on its 75-percent share of the investment. The terminal is running at only 20 to 30 percent of capacity.
Irving Oil refinery control room, St. John, New Brunswick. Photo by Lance Tapley

Irving Oil refinery control room, St. John, New Brunswick. Photo by Lance Tapley

But Irving Oil is guaranteed at least $20 million a year from Repsol, including lease payments on the property, no matter how poorly the terminal does financially, a Canadian Broadcasting Corporation News investigation reported, citing court documents.

A few days after Irving signed the lucrative Repsol deal in 2005 -- possibly without telling lawmakers about it -- the provincial legislative assembly approved the city's freeze of the LNG property tax at $500,000 a year for 25 years.

The company had said it wouldn't build the facility unless its taxes were frozen, according to the Saint John mayor at the time, the CBC reported. Based on the property's $300-million assessment, Irving should be paying $8 million a year.

Saint John's infrastructure has deteriorated, said economist Rob Moir, of the University of New Brunswick at Saint John, because of deals like this tax freeze. Despite the huge Irving infrastructure within its boundaries, it's "a city that's extremely cash-strapped."
The ad in the in the J.D. Irving-owned Telegraph-Journal that said renegotiating a tax break might jeopardize future Irving projects benefiting Saint John.

The ad in the in the J.D. Irving-owned Telegraph-Journal that said renegotiating a tax break might jeopardize future Irving projects benefiting Saint John. Click to enlarge.

When the Saint John City Council voted to take another look at the Canaport tax freeze, Irving Oil warned the community in an ad in the J.D. Irving Telegraph-Journal that renegotiating the deal might jeopardize future Irving projects benefiting Saint John: The city shouldn't send signals to potential investors that it's "a community that rethinks commitments after investments have been made."

"Irving Oil are very good businessmen," CBC quoted a Saint John lawyer, "among the best in the world."

Another Irving business deal is controversial in Saint John. In 2005, J.D. Irving's Atlantic Wallboard struck a 21-year agreement with a publicly owned coal power plant in the city to be supplied with waste gypsum from the air-pollution scrubbers in the plant's smokestacks.

If it doesn't produce enough gypsum, the plant's owner, provincial utility NB Power, has to pay a fee. So far, CBC News reported, it has paid J.D. Irving more than $12 million.

Irving companies dispense favors, too, such as a free flight for Saint John's mayor on a J.D. Irving corporate plane, for which he had explaining to do earlier this year. (Similar Irving favors are dispensed in Maine, as described in a Maine Center for Public Interest Reporting story in May about an Irving-paid flight taken by Sen. Thomas Saviello, a Wilton Republican.)

Crown forestry deal

Irving environmental practices are also contentious in New Brunswick, especially J.D. Irving's treatment of the forests.

Last year, ahead of the provincial legislative election, Conservative Premier David Alward announced a new crown-lands policy including a special deal for J.D. Irving, granting it foresting concessions.

The policy includes a 20-percent increase in the permitted yearly softwood harvest. The Irving deal is for 25 years.

Like the forestry agreement the company signed with Maine's LePage administration described in Part 1 of this series, the New Brunswick deal was kept secret for a time. The day after it was announced, J.D. Irving promised a $513-million investment in its mills.

But environmentalists and many others were incensed by what they said was the government agreeing to the over-harvesting of the public lands. Hundreds rallied on the Legislative Assembly lawn in Fredericton in protest.
Tracy Glynn, forest campaign director for the Conservation Council of New Brunswick.

Lance Tapley

Tracy Glynn, forest campaign director for the Conservation Council of New Brunswick.

It was "a wildly unpopular decision," said Green Party legislator David Coon.

Soon after the election, however, the new Liberal premier, Brian Gallant, who had not committed himself to his predecessor's action, announced his hands were tied by the terms of the contract with Irving.

Tracy Glynn, forest campaign director for the Conservation Council of New Brunswick, commented that both major political parties, the Progressive Conservatives and the Liberals "don't do anything that doesn't support J.D. Irving."

She added: "It's the culture of fear,” referring to politicians' fear of a company that employs so many New Brunswickers.

Premier Gallant, his natural resources minister and Saint John's mayor declined to be interviewed for this article series. And so did J.D. Irving executives.

msfreeh
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Re: Blogging is not truth, behavior is truth

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Massachusetts ex-con Arnie Coles , a African American
received his Maters Degree in Criminology
from Goddard College and was involved with Union College
Where he got his PhD.


Ex-Convicts Ask for Student Support
Propose Harvard Halfway House
By Travis P. Dungan, October 5, 1973


http://www.thecrimson.com/article/1973/ ... port-ptwo/" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

Two ex-convicts pleaded with 40 students in Phillips Brooks House last night to help re-channel some of the economic and educational resources of Harvard to overcrowded and unfit prisons in Massachusetts.

John McGrath, a member of the National Coalition for Correctional Change, proposed that students work to have Harvard build several halfway houses on University-owned property in Boston and Cambridge.

"There is so much you undergraduates could do." Arnie Coles, president of the National Prisoners' Rights Association said at the meeting. "Students are the only ones who have consistently supported prisoners and shared their education and resources and you can't stop now. We need your resources."

"You're in your own prisons here at Harvard," Coles said. "It's about time you come to Walpole and find out what principles are all about. You could see that our society's prisons are nothing but the dumping grounds for people who are denied schooling and training."

McGrath complained that no professors had come to the organizational meeting of the PBH Prisoners Committee. "The government gives away all its money to Boston University. Harvard University so that all the intellectuals do research here but they never apply anything to society. They talk about peace. Well, if they don't do anything at home first, we'll just have to wake them up. Maybe we'll have to burn some girl here in Harvard Square," he said.

Joseph Sandler '75, co-chairman of the Prisoners Committee, told the group. "You can try to lock up all your problems. But they're starting to come out now and there's nothing you can do to stop them."

Sandler said the two most significant problems in prison reform were the lack of access of lawyers and the public to prisoners and the failure to hold prison guards and officials accountable for their treatment of inmates.

When Governor Francis W. Sargent fired reform-minded corrections commissioner John Boone this August, Sandler said, he exacerbated these problems by cutting out such innovative programs as prisoner furloughs and 24-hour citizen observation in prisons.

"The guards at Walpole played games with the prisoners to incite riots in order to keep the pot boiling. It was a deliberate and successful attempt to get rid of Boone and his programs, to justify human warehousing and more security." Sandler said.

In response to a question from the audience Coles said. "No penal system will work. Life sentences won't deter some people from doing anything."

Sandler suggested that students act on McGrath's proposal and ask Charles U. Daly, vice president for Government and Community Affairs, to have Harvard fund a halfway house in Cambridge. He also proposed that students lobby in the state legislature for a more reasonable penal code

msfreeh
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Re: Blogging is not truth, behavior is truth

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Alabama Makes Photo IDs Mandatory for Voting, Then Shutters DMV Offices in Black Counties

http://www.commondreams.org/news/2015/1 ... k-counties" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;


Some observers say that Alabama's move to close dozens of drivers license offices is a discriminatory move that could trigger a civil rights probe. Here's why: in 2011 lawmakers...
Read More

msfreeh
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Re: Blogging is not truth, behavior is truth

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Hey Erin and Sam,
We want to invite the Grange members and the MeHiMo MOFGA members to come
out and help us harvest the bed of carrots we're donating to local food
cupboards this fall. Could you please help us spread the word about it?
Here's the info below on the volunteer harvest day on our farm. I've also
attached the event poster to this email. Here's a link to the Facebook
event page: https://www.facebook.com/events/1153670237980636/" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;
Thank you so much and hope to see you here,
Gene & Mary Margaret


*First Annual Community Carrot Harvest*
*Wednesday, October 14 at 3:30pm*
Ripley Farm
62 Merrills Mills Rd
Dover-Foxcroft ME 04426
207-564-0563
[email protected]
http://www.ripleyorganicfarm.com" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;
Join us in volunteering to pull up and wash up a bed full of carrots that
we've grown for donation to local food pantries this fall. Wear outdoor
work clothes appropriate to the weather, gloves, and remember you will get
muddy! All are welcome and we'll get this done rain or shine!

msfreeh
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Re: Blogging is not truth, behavior is truth

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http://www.boston.com/news/local/rhode- ... t_Reads_hp" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

Dunkin’ Donuts employee writes ‘#blacklivesmatter’ on Providence police officer’s cup
The union representing members of the Providence Police Department released a statement condemning the Dunkin’ employee’s actions.

msfreeh
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Posts: 7755

Re: Blogging is not truth, behavior is truth

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https://www.muckrock.com/news/archives/ ... ting-fbi-/" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

MuckRock • Requester's Voice: Ryan Shapiro on how to street fight ...
https://www.muckrock.com/.../requesters ... t-fighting.." onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;.
Dec 20, 2013 - In this week's Requester's Voice, MuckRock benefits from the experience of Ryan Shapiro, whose track record qualifies him as a FOIA super ...

msfreeh
Level 34 Illuminated
Posts: 7755

Re: Blogging is not truth, behavior is truth

Post by msfreeh »

two stories


you do know what to do


1.

http://www.americanswhotellthetruth.org ... n-kiriakou" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

2.


I have long been indebted to Jane Hamsher, Kevin Gosztola, and Brian Sonenstein at Firedoglake. They helped rally support for me in my deepest time of need, reaching out to people like you who gave very generously to FDL to help Heather and me pay for our mortgage and even to buy gifts for our children. Jane, Kevin, and Brian also generously published my open "Letters from Loretto" and even visited me in prison.

I am now a proud reader and supporter of Shadowproof, Kevin and Brian's next generation platform of investigative journalism. Shadowproof is working to investigate and cover issues that are important to me that don't get nearly enough attention in the mainstream press, such as whistleblowing, prison healthcare, civil liberties, and the justice system.

They are one of very, very few outlets covering prison conditions, solitary confinement, and torture, and they are planning even more and deeper coverage in the near future. We're even in the process of planning of live, online discussion at Shadowproof about my experiences in prison and my upcoming books.

It's not easy to confront the established, corporate-owned mainstream media and to cover complicated and controversial issues that others have chosen to ignore. It takes support, financial support, from people like you and me.

Would you help me to help Shadowproof succeed by making a donation today? It's up to all of us to work together to make it a success. No pledge is too small to make a difference. Thank you!

Sincerely,

John Kiriakou

msfreeh
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Posts: 7755

Re: Blogging is not truth, behavior is truth

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http://shadowproof.com/2015/10/12/wikil ... o-morales/" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

msfreeh
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Posts: 7755

Re: Blogging is not truth, behavior is truth

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http://www.postandcourier.com/article/2 ... 151029736/" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

Federal watchdogs need access to agency records

BY MICHAEL E. HOROWITZ
Oct 23 2015 12:01 am

One of the most significant post-Watergate reforms was the passage in 1978 of the Inspector General Act, which has put in place 72 federal inspectors general to serve as agency watchdogs responsible for ensuring the integrity and efficiency of our government’s operations.

An inspector general’s ability to accomplish that ever-challenging mission depends on the bedrock principles enshrined in the IG Act: independence and access to all an agency’s records without interference. I emphasize “all” because unrestricted access to agency records ensures that our essential functions cannot be thwarted.

Over the past 35 years, that access has empowered IGs to root out government corruption and save U.S. taxpayers billions of dollars.

For decades, there was no controversy over what the words “all records” meant. But that changed in 2010 when FBI attorneys suggested, soon after several critical reports by my office as inspector general at the Justice Department, that “all records” might not include some records the FBI was seeking to withhold. This was the first time anyone in the department had asserted that the broad powers of the IG Act did not apply fully to our oversight.

Not surprisingly, once the FBI started raising legal challenges, several other federal agencies challenged their IGs’ independent oversight authority.

For example, when the Peace Corps inspector general sought to review the agency’s response to sexual assaults against corps volunteers — oversight that was mandated by Congress — the agency put in place policies that prevented IG access to key records.

Making matters worse, recently an arm of the Justice Department issued a 68-page opinion that supported the FBI’s position and concluded that IGs do not have the right to independently access certain records involving grand jury testimony, wiretap information and some credit reports, no matter how critical they might be to our oversight.

Indeed, these kinds of records have been central to some of our most significant reviews of FBI and Justice Department programs, and for more than 21 years the department had provided them to us without once accusing us of not properly safeguarding them. As a result of this decision, it is now up to agency officials to decide whether to grant, or refuse, an IG permission to review these types of records.

This leads to the absurd situation where the words “all records” in the IG Act no longer mean “all records.”

Without independent access to agency records, our ability as IGs to conduct the kind of sensitive reviews that have resulted in widespread improvements in the effectiveness of government programs will be significantly compromised.

For example, since 2010, many of my office’s most important reviews, including those affecting public safety, national security, civil liberties and even whistleblower retaliation, have been impeded or delayed.

Allowing officials whose agencies are under review to decide what documents an inspector general can have turns the IG Act on its head and is fundamentally inconsistent with the independence that is necessary for effective and credible oversight.

This safeguard was vital when Congress passed the IG Act in 1978, and it remains vital today. Actions that limit or delay an inspector general’s access can have profoundly negative consequences for our work:

They make us less effective, encourage other agencies to raise similar objections and erode the morale of our dedicated professionals.

As chair of the Council of Inspectors General, I know that inspectors general everywhere are deeply concerned about this attack on our independence.

Thankfully, a substantial bipartisan group in Congress shares our view that the IG Act must not be interpreted in a way that would render it toothless. Pending legislation in the Senate and the House would restore inspectors general independence and empower IGs to conduct the kind of rigorous, independent and thorough oversight that taxpayers expect.

I urge Congress to pass legislation quickly that clarifies that “all records” means “all records” and reject any interpretation that would allow government agencies to shield their misdeeds from inspector

msfreeh
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http://www.stopfbi.net/" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;


Committee to
Stop FBI Repression
Organizing to stop FBI repression of anti-war and international solidarity activists

msfreeh
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http://chicago.suntimes.com/editorials- ... ng-overdue" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

66 arrested at McCormick Place in protests at police conference
written by Mitchell Armentrout posted:

Sixty-six people were arrested Saturday while demonstrating outside the International Association of Chiefs of Police annual conference at McCormick Place, where Mayor Rahm Emanuel and police Supt. Garry McCarthy had spoke

msfreeh
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r Vigil 2015: Building a Culture of Justice and Peace PDF

http://www.soaw.org/" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

Saturday morning, 11/21 in Lumpkin, GA

#ShutDownStewart Livestream!


Friday, 11/20 in Columbus, GA (See More Photos Here)

Activists arrived from Mexico, Chile, El Salvador, Venezuela, Panama and around the US to gather for the first workshops in the 2015 Vigil, exploring resistance to US empire. Georgia Peace and Justice Coalition presented Why We Must #ShutDownStewart to get us ready for Saturday’s march to the Stewart Detention Center, discussing the intersections of racism, militarism, and mass incarceration that are embodied at Stewart and other detention centers throughout the US.

National Religious Campaign Against Torture screened Breaking Down the Box, exposing the torture of solitary confinement in the context of mass incarceration in the US. Two of the victims of the right-wing extremist violent attempts to overthrow the democratically-elected government discussed the Struggle Against Impunity in Venezuela. Pax Christi USA hosted a discussion led by youth organizers for the Dream Act in NJ, and SOA Watch activante Jonathan González Quiel spoke on human rights and militarism in Panama.

Two members of the jury of the International Tribunal of Conscience on Mexico on the anniversary of the disappearance of the students from the rural teacher’s school in Ayotzinapa were featured in a workshop on Mexico’s Crimes Against Humanity and the Complicity of the US. And SOA Watch LA screened Testimony: The Maria Guardado Story, shared personal remembrances and also poetry from Maria’s newly released (bilingual) book of poems, Quisiera Escribir Cosas Bellas.

We heard a report-back on the Colombian Peace Process from Witness for Peace, and from organizers in Costa Rica and Mexico about mining, militarization and the disappeared. NETWORK Lobby shared an analysis of 2015 congressional legislation, and another workshop discussed how early Christianity was co-opted and transformed into a violent, patriarchal tool of empire. SOA Watch leaders also led Peacemaker, Legal Observer, Nonviolent Direct Action and Legislative trainings, and packed the house for an exciting opening plenary that closed out the transformative evening.

msfreeh
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http://chicago.suntimes.com/news/7/71/1 ... e-shooting" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;




Emanuel aide attacked at vigil for victims of police shooting

12/28/2015, 11:08PM



Janet Cooksey, 49, holds up a picture of her son, 19-year-old Quintonio LeGrier, during a news conference outside a West Garfield Park neighborhood home on Dec. 27, 2015. | Ashlee Rezin/Sun-Times
One of Mayor Rahm Emanuel’s deputy chiefs of staff was attacked Sunday evening while attending a vigil for Bettie Jones and Quintonio LeGrier, who were fatally shot by Chicago Police in West Garfield Park on Saturday.

According to a source, Vance Henry was attending the vigil about 5:50 p.m. at the site of the shooting in the 4700 block of West Erie when he was attacked.




The police department’s Office of News Affairs confirmed that a 50-year-old man was at the vigil when “he was approached by an unknown person who began to make verbal threats which escalated to a physical altercation.”

Strong earthquake rattles central Oklahoma
69 journalists killed while reporting in 2015
Awkward, bland and angry: Your 2015 political Christmas cards

The man was punched with a closed fist, tackled to the ground and kicked repeatedly, according to police. He went to Rush University Medical Center, where he was treated and released.

In an emailed statement Monday night, City Hall spokesman Adam Collins said: “We are aware that on

msfreeh
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http://winnipegcopwatch.org/" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

msfreeh
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Re: Blogging is not truth, behavior is truth

Post by msfreeh »

http://arstechnica.com/security/2016/01 ... ne-hacked/" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;



US Intelligence director’s personal e-mail, phone hacked
"Crackas With Attitude": We routed Clapper's calls to Free Palestine Movement.

Jan 13, 2016 11:16am EST


Director of National Intelligence James Clapper (far right) with CIA Director John Brennan (center) and FBI Director James Comey (left) before Congress last year. Clapper and Brennan have both now been targeted by hackers calling themselves "Crackas With Attitude". (Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

The same individual or group claiming to be behind a recent breach of the personal e-mail account of CIA Director John Brennan now claims to be behind the hijacking of the accounts of Director of National Intelligence James Clapper. The Office of the Director of National Intelligence confirmed to Motherboard that Clapper was targeted and that the case has been forwarded to law enforcement.


Hacker releases new purported personal data for top CIA, DHS officials [Updated]

Alleged hacker tells Ars that the authorities have not contacted him.
Someone going by the moniker "Cracka," claiming to be with a group of "teenage hackers" called "Crackas With Attitude," told Motherboard's Lorenzo Franceschi-Bicchiarai that he had gained access to Clapper's Verizon FiOS account and changed the settings for his phone service to forward all calls to the Free Palestine Movement. Cracka also claimed to have gained access to Clapper's personal e-mail account and his wife's Yahoo account.

In October, Crackas With Attitude claimed responsibility for hacking CIA Director Brennan's personal e-mail account and gaining access to a number of work-related documents he had sent through it—including his application for a security clearance and credentials. The group also apparently gained access to a number of government Web portals and applications, including the Joint Automated Booking System (a portal that provides law enforcement with data on any person's arrest records, regardless of whether the cases are ordered sealed by courts) and government employee personnel records. The group published a spreadsheet

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Black Lives event urges Unitarians to fight for racial equality
More than 100 people gathered Saturday at First Unitarian Church in Milwaukee for a workshop on the Black Lives Matter movement. Participants were urged to take up the fight for racial equality.



More than 100 people gathered Saturday at First Unitarian Church in Milwaukee for a workshop on the Black Lives Matter movement. Participants were urged to take up the fight for racial equality.




Jan. 16, 2016 4:36 p.m.


Maria Hamilton, mother of Dontre Hamilton, shared her experiences as a grieving-mother-turned--activist.

If Maria Hamilton was hoping to make at least a few people uncomfortable in a mostly white crowd on Saturday, chances are she succeeded.

Hamilton became the face of the Black Lives Matter movement in Milwaukee after the 2014 fatal shooting of her son, Dontre, by a white police officer.

On Saturday, she walked to the podium and pulled the hood of her green coat tightly up over her head.

"I'm not a hoodie," Hamilton told the more than 100 people gathered at First Unitarian Church in Milwaukee for a workshop on the Black Lives Matter movement.

"I'm human," she told them. "Our husbands, our babies, our daughters...we're all human."

Hamilton shared her experiences as a grieving-mother-turned-social-justice-activist as part of the gathering aimed at encouraging local Unitarians to mobilize on behalf of the Black Lives Matter movement.

It followed the call by the denomination's 2015 General Assembly for Unitarians to offer "immediate witness" in the fight against police brutality, racism, mass incarceration and other systems that negatively and disproportionately affect people of color.

"This is a critical time," said Mary Devitt, one of the organizers, who was jailed alongside her husband and stepson during a Black Lives Matter protest in December 2014.

"It is a crisis," she said of the inequities faced by black Americans. "And (Unitarian Universalists) can't stand on the fence."

Among the speakers Saturday was the Rev. Julie Taylor, a St. Louis-area Unitarian minister, who told of her work ministering to protesters in Ferguson, Mo., in the wake of the 2014 fatal shooting of Michael Brown.

Taylor said the movement reflects all of the seven tenets of the Unitarian tradition, including the belief in the inherent worth of all people, and the insistence on justice, equity and compassion in human relations.

"This is a spiritual journey," she said. "White supremacy and white privilege is a soul sickness. It keeps us from being the people we were born to be, the people we were created to be."

Devitt is working with Ann Heidkamp of Unitarian Universalist Church West in Brookfield to educate local Unitarians about the movement. The effort, she said, is not about calling people out, but helping them better understand the reality of racial injustice in America and how their faith calls them to act.

"It's about asking people how are you going to challenge yourself, how are you going to witness," said Devitt. "It's finding the line between staying in relationship and helping a person recognize where they need to learn."

The idea of being made uncomfortable — by racism and injustice, by one's own white privilege or sense of guilt — was a recurring theme throughout the event.

"I want everyone in this room to be uncomfortable," Hamilton told the crowd. "It's the only way we're going to get justice in America."

"You should be uncomfortable," said Reggie Jackson, head griot, or oral historian, of the now-online Black Holocaust Museum. "If you...see these things and you are not uncomfortable, something is wrong with you."

Jackson was speaking about the disturbing images archived at the Holocaust Museum, founded by James Cameron, who escaped an attempted lynching as a teenager.

Jackson and others urged the audience to take up the fight for racial equality but noted that they would do so as great risk, if not to their bodies then to their

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Obituaries
Concepcion Picciotto, who held vigil outside the White House for decades, dies

Concepcion Picciotto protested outside the White House for more than 30 years making the peace vigil the longest-running act of political protest in the U.S. Picciotto died on Jan.25,2016



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January 25 at 5:52 PM
Concepcion Picciotto, the protester who maintained a peace vigil outside the White House for more than three decades, a demonstration widely considered to be the longest-running act of political protest in U.S. history, died Jan. 25 at a housing facility operated by N Street Village, a nonprofit that supports homeless women in Washington. She was believed to be 80.

She had recently suffered a fall, but the immediate cause of d

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Hacker Doxes 80 Police Officers of Miami


A group of hackers revealed the names, email addresses and phone numbers of over 80 police officers of Miami, in what seems to be an effort to "dox" the agents. The hackers seem to be lightly associated with the group of apparent teen hackers known as "Crackas With Attitude" or CWA, who breached the AOL email account of the Director of CIA John Brennan last year, and attacked other high-profile officials of US government during recent weeks.

The group also hacked JABS (Joint Automated Booking System), an application used to document and manage arrested citizens of US, and also blustered for accessing a secret portal of FBI. CWA disclosed the personal details of 2,400 officials of US government in November. Softpedia posted on 22nd January, 2016, stating that Vice reporters verified the claims of hackers and confirmed the authenticity of the data.

It is not clear from where the hackers acquired the data, but seems they got it from a US government database of law enforcement officials which was allegedly breached last

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February 8, 2016
Preserve Do-No-Harm for Military Psychologists: Coalition Responds to Department of Defense Letter to the APA

by Roy Eidelson Trudy Bond, Stephen Soldz, Steven Reisner, Jean Maria Arrigo, Brad Olson, and Bryant Welch



Last July, an independent investigation documented a years-long pattern of secret collusion between senior representatives of the American Psychological Association (APA) and the Department of Defense (DoD) to keep psychologists involved in the DoD’s abusive interrogation and detention program. Following these revelations, in August the APA’s Council of Representatives passed an historic resolution – by a nearly unanimous vote – to ban psychologists from involvement in national security interrogations. The Council further voted to remove psychologists from any involvement in detention operations at Guantánamo Bay and all other facilities operating in violation of international law. The APA assigned the responsibility for determining such violations to the UN Committee Against Torture,

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I moved to the US 7 years ago from Finland — here's what Americans don't understand about Nordic countries


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Mar. 19, 2016
The American Dream is alive and well in Sweden


This is what Americans fail to understand: My taxes in Finland were used to pay for top-notch services for me.

Bernie Sanders is hanging on, still pushing his vision of a Nordic-like socialist utopia for America, and his supporters love him for it. Hillary Clinton, meanwhile, is chalking up victories by sounding more sensible. “We are not Denmark,” she said in the first Democratic debate, pointing instead to America’s strengths as a land of freedom for entrepreneurs and businesses.

Commentators repeat endlessly the mantra that Sanders’s Nordic-style policies might sound nice, but they’d never work in the U.S. The upshot is that Sanders, and his supporters, are being treated a bit like children—good-hearted, but hopelessly naive. That’s probably how Nordic people seem to many Americans, too.

A Nordic person myself, I left my native Finland seven years ago and moved to the U.S. Although I’m now a U.S. citizen, I hear these kinds of comments from Americans all the time—at cocktail parties and at panel discussions, in town hall meetings and on the opinion pages. Nordic countries are the way they are, I’m told, because they are small, homogeneous “nanny states” where everyone looks alike, thinks alike, and belongs to a big extended family.

This, in turn, makes Nordic citizens willing to sacrifice their own interests to help their neighbors. Americans don’t feel a similar kinship with other Americans, I’m told, and thus will never sacrifice their own interests for the common good. What this is mostly taken to mean is that Americans will never, ever agree to pay higher taxes to provide universal soc

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What have you done with your life?


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Published on
Thursday, May 12, 2016
by Common Dreams
Keeping the Light Lit: Michael Ratner (1943-2016)
byCenter for ConstitutionalRights

Michael Ratner, according to CCR's board chair Katherine Franke, "was among the most visionary lawyers of our generation, holding the U.S. government accountable when it went to war illegally, tortured its citizens, withheld state secrets, limited the rights of a free press, persecuted political dissidents and in countless other contexts. There has hardly been a progressive social movement in the last 45 years that Michael hasn’t been part of, contributing his phenomenally creative and cutting edge legal mind. All of us who treasure freedom and oppose oppressive state violence owe a debt of gratitude to Michael Ratner." (Photo: CCR)
Dear CCR Community,

It is with a very heavy heart that we write to tell you of a great loss to our family. On Wednesday, we lost one of the great social justice warriors of our time, Michael Ratner. In July 2015, Michael fell ill. But he fought his illness in the same manner as he did all of the injustices he encountered for the last half century; with clarity, tenacity, good cheer, the support of his loving family and friends, and hope for the best possible outcome against the odds. Sadly, this was one fight that he wasn’t able to win. We send our deepest condolences to his family and to all of those who knew and loved him.

"There is not the same sense of strength in struggle that you can change things, not as there was in the ‘60s and ‘70s. You get to the point where you have a very conservative government and you feel like you are only a flickering light. But we have to keep the light lit."
—Michael Ratner
Family members say Michael was born with the “empathy gene,” which made him a wonderful and loyal friend. While a law student at Columbia University in 1968 this empathy and compassion helped him find his political focus during student protests against the Vietnam War. While participating in a building occupation on campus Michael was pushed to the ground and beaten by the police. Seeing his bloodied classmates who were, like him, standing up for what’s right, he decided he would always stand on the side of the oppressed and against the oppressor. A law student was pushed down; a radical rose up. In his words, “[E]vents like this created the activists of the generation and I never looked back; I declared that I was going to spend my life on the side of justice and non-violence.” And this is exactly what Michael did until his last breath.

After law school Michael was drawn to the Center for Constitutional Rights; it would be his political home for over 40 years. He started as a staff attorney on the same day as another lost CCR hero, Rhonda Copelon, who along with other CCR colleagues, built gender work into the Center’s portfolio in the early 1970s. Through the years, Michael came to embrace international law as a key tool for the Center through the counsel of Rhonda and former CCR Vice President, Peter Weiss. This work, along with Michael’s tenacity and spirit remain the defining features of CCR 50 years after it was founded.

Michael was the organizational bridge between the work of CCR’s founders, from whom he learned how to litigate boldly and work with social movements, and our current generation of lawyers and advocates. He was a mentor and inspiration to generations of law students and lawyers who have come through CCR. Twenty-four years ago, the Center’s current Executive Director, Vince Warren, was one of these students. He shared his thoughts upon first meeting Michael as a CCR Ella Baker Intern:

“He lived the vision for how a radical people’s lawyer could almost literally shift the world for the most precarious in our society, by shifting the ground under the most powerful. But what really shifted, was me. Hearing his stories of representing clients and political movements from every corner of the globe, I came to see how I could use my law degree for something extraordinary and eternal. It was my honor to have later served with him on CCR’s Board and to work in partnership as the Executive Director of the organization we both cherished.”

In accepting the Center’s Relentless Radical Award in 2012, Michael explained why he chose to spend his career in partnership with CCR: “I believed then and I still believe today, that it is the place that will change the world. I am as excited to walk into the Center today as I was that first day. And I still believe it is the place that will change the world.”

Jules Lobel, CCR’s Board President and frequent CCR co-counsel with Michael, shared “Michael was the moral and political compass for me and CCR. He was the spirit of the Center: his approach to litigation and working with communities, his fortitude in waging long running campaigns, and the values he held dear. These will outlive him and continue to impact CCR’s work for generations.”

Michael had the vision to see things on the horizon—things that others barely glimpsed, often dismissed, or were convinced simply didn’t exist. From his work at CCR challenging US imperialism and oppression through policies of brutal militarism from Central America, Iraq and at home, Michael stood for peaceful conflict resolution and accountability for the inevitable abuse that accompanies the use of force. He never shied away from a fight, no matter the odds; indeed, it is likely he specifically selected the cases with the longest odds. After all, those involved in these cases were most in need of solidarity, support and a legal ally. This was obvious in the years he spent dedicated to exposing conditions facing Palestinians in Gaza and the West Bank and advocating for adherence to international law and recognition of their human rights.

Katherine Franke, CCR’s Board Chair, reflects on the legacy that Michael has left us with:

“He was among the most visionary lawyers of our generation, holding the U.S. government accountable when it went to war illegally, tortured its citizens, withheld state secrets, limited the rights of a free press, persecuted political dissidents and in countless other contexts. There has hardly been a progressive social movement in the last 45 years that Michael hasn’t been part of, contributing his phenomenally creative and cutting edge legal mind. All of us who treasure freedom and oppose oppressive state violence owe a debt of gratitude to Michael Ratner.”

Michael’s special gift was his ability to turn an urgent problem into a meaningful, hard-hitting lawsuit. He sometimes won in court, but he always won in the court of public opinion; even if it took

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