Monday, December 12, 2011
Thursday, December 1, 2011
Monday, November 21, 2011
Wednesday, November 16, 2011
Tuesday, November 1, 2011
Friday, October 14, 2011
This article is pure hilarity:
If you have an unpaid traffic ticket that's been gathering dust for three years or more, the state has a deal for you: Pay up during the first six months of 2012, and get 50 percent off.
The one-time discount, authorized by a new state law, is designed to help both delinquent drivers and financially strapped state and local governments.
Yeah, I don't think that this discount will "help" victims of ticketing, since they clearly aren't being persecuted or suffering much when not paying the fines.
This seems like a classic case of the government biting off more than it can chew. It overcriminalizes but then cannot enforce, and now it is literally on its knees, begging for its victims to let it suck their blood, offering what it laughably considers to be an incentive: 50% off.
Epic California fail. I hope nobody takes advantage of this bullshit offer. I hope the police's ability to enforce these fines further erodes, and I hope that the state declares bankruptcy soon. Choke on your own fat, California!
Saturday, October 1, 2011
Saturday, August 27, 2011
Wednesday, August 24, 2011
Are you surprised? I'm not.
The Federal Bureau of Investigation employs upwards of 15,000 undercover agents today, ten times what they had on the roster back in 1975.
If you think that’s a few spies too many – spies earning as much as $100,000 per assignment – one doesn’t have to go too deep into their track record to see their accomplishments. Those agents are responsible for an overwhelming amount of terrorist stings that have stopped major domestic catastrophes in the vein of 9/11 from happening on American soil.
Another thing those agents are responsible for, however, is plotting those very schemes.
The FBI has in recent years used trained informants not just to snitch on suspected terrorists, but to set them up from the get-go. A recent report put together by Mother Jones and the Investigative Reporting Program at the University of California-Berkley analyses some striking statistics about the role of FBI informants in terrorism cases that the Bureau has targeted in the decade since the September 11 attacks.
The report reveals that the FBI regularly infiltrates communities where they suspect terrorist-minded individuals to be engaging with others. Regardless of their intentions, agents are sent in to converse within the community, find suspects that could potentially carry out “lone wolf” attacks and then, more or less, encourage them to do so. By providing weaponry, funds and a plan, FBI-directed agents will encourage otherwise-unwilling participants to plot out terrorist attacks, only to bust them before any events fully materialize.
Additionally, one former high-level FBI officials speaking to Mother Jones says that, for every informant officially employed by the bureau, up to three unofficial agents are working undercover.
The FBI has used those informants to set-up and thus shut-down several of the more high profile would-be attacks in recent years. The report reveals that the Washington DC Metro bombing plot, the New York City subway plot, the attempt to blow up Chicago’s Sears Tower and dozens more were all orchestrated by FBI agents. In fact, reads the report, only three of the more well-known terror plots of the last decade weren’t orchestrated by FBI-involved agents.
The report reveals that in many of the stings, important meetings between informants and the unknowing participants are left purposely unrecorded, as to avoid any entrapment charges that could cause the case to be dismissed. Perhaps the most high-profile of the FBI-proposed plots was the case of the Newburgh 4. Around an hour outside of New York City, an informant infiltrated a Muslim community and engaged four local men to carry out a series of attacks. Those men may have never actually carried out an attack, but once the informant offered them a plot and a pair of missiles, they agreed. Defense attorneys cried “entrapment,” but the men still were sentenced to 25 years apiece.
"The problem with the cases we're talking about is that defendants would not have done anything if not kicked in the ass by government agents," Martin Stolar tells Mother Jones. Stolar represented the suspect involved in a New York City bombing plot that was set-up by FBI agents. "They're creating crimes to solve crimes so they can claim a victory in the war on terror." For their part, the FBI says this method is a plan for "preemption," "prevention" and "disruption."
The report also reveals that, of the 500-plus prosecutions of terrorism-related cases they analyzed, nearly half of them involved the use of informants, many of whom worked for the FBI in exchange for money or to work off criminal charges. Of the 158 prosecutions carried out, 49 defendants participated in plots that agent provocateurs arranged on behalf of the FBI.
Experts note that the chance of winning a terrorism-related trial, entrapment or not, is near impossible. "The plots people are accused of being part of – attacking subway systems or trying to bomb a building – are so frightening that they can overwhelm a jury," David Cole, a Georgetown University law professor, tells Mother Jones. Since 9/11, almost two-thirds of the cases linked to terrorism have ended with guilty pleas. “They don't say, 'I've been entrapped,' or, 'I was immature,’” a retired FBI official remarks.
All of this and those guilty pleas often stem for just being in the right place at the wrong time. Farhana Khera of the group Muslim Advocate notes that agents go into mosques on “fishing expeditions” just to see where they can get interest in the community. "The FBI is now telling agents they can go into houses of worship without probable cause," says Khera. "That raises serious constitutional issues."
From the set-up to the big finish, the whole sting operation is ripe with constitutional issues such as that. A decade since 9/11, however, the FBI is reaching through whatever means it can pull together to keep terrorists – or whom they think could someday become one – from ever hurting America.
Reprinted with permission from Russia Today.
Sunday, July 31, 2011
HELENA — A Billings police officer on trial in Helena for driving with an elevated alcohol level attacked the breath-testing technology used by the state, and emerged without a conviction on the charge after her trial ended Friday with a hung jury.
The four-man, two-woman jury convicted Samantha Puckett of speeding but failed to reach agreement on the DUI per se charge. Municipal Judge Bob Wood declared a mistrial and Deputy City Attorney Thomas Jodoin said it was too early to decide whether the city would retry the case.
Puckett’s attorney, Bradley Finn, said Puckett has been working at her job as a police officer since a brief period of administrative leave after her arrest in the early hours of Dec. 10.
Billings Police officials did not return calls inquiring about Puckett’s employment status, and a person at the city’s Human Resources Department said that department would not comment.
Helena police say they measured Samantha Puckett’s breath-alcohol content above .10 percent that night, exceeding the legal limit for driving of .08 percent.
But Paul Miranda, an expert witness for Puckett, testified that the analysis could be flawed.
Miranda, who holds a Ph.D. in chemistry from the University of Montana and works as a senior metallurgist for Idaho-based Thompson Creek Mining Co., has had some training related to breath-testing and has previously testified as an expert witness about eight or 10 times, he said.
He argued that the test results could vary due to elevation, the body temperature of the person blowing, and other factors. Based on those variables, and after viewing police video of Puckett performing well in two of the three field sobriety tests, Miranda said he believed Puckett was below the legal maximum.
Jodoin questioned whether the chemist had any training in analysis of field sobriety tests. Miranda said he hadn’t, but he’s previously had a few beers with buddies and knows when they’re intoxicated. As an example, he said his sister-in-law, once at a bachelorette party, fell off a stage while singing after drinking all night, and hit her head. “I’m pretty sure she’s above a .08,” he said.
The incident began when Helena Police Department Cpl. Jason Zander, on patrol by the intersection of North Montana Avenue and Cedar Street, saw and heard Puckett’s SUV speeding southbound, according to his testimony Thursday. By driving his patrol car at about the same speed as the SUV, Zander estimated the car was driving about 45 mph in a 30 mph speed zone, and he pulled it over.
Zander, a nine-year Helena Police veteran who trains other officers on conducting field sobriety testing, testified that he smelled alcohol in the car. Puckett performed well on two of the field sobriety tests and initially said she had two beers that evening. Later, she said she had consumed four beers in three different bars, and only eaten beef jerky and a protein bar that evening.
During the required 20-minute period between the traffic stop and the breath analysis (to ensure that any alcohol left in the mouth is able to dissipate), Zander and Puckett chatted about police officers they both knew and other police-related matters including the funeral a few days earlier of David DeLaittre, the Montana Highway Patrolman who was killed during a traffic stop.
“It’s a bad situation for me, too,” Zander said on the video just before arresting Puckett. “This is the last thing I want to do.”
After viewing the results of a second breath test at the detention center, she was asked on video whether she was under the influence of alcohol.
“Obviously, yes,” she said.
Read more: http://billingsgazette.com/news/local/article_897c390b-334f-5a93-bc9c-cf8ae948f016.html#ixzz1TjkxtB6G
Monday, July 25, 2011
Using his law enforcement experience and data drawn from the FBI's behavioral analysis unit, Jim Kouri has collected a series of personality traits common to a couple of professions.
Kouri, who's a vice president of the National Assn. of Chiefs of Police, has assembled traits such as superficial charm, an exaggerated sense of self-worth, glibness, lying, lack of remorse and manipulation of others.
These traits, Kouri points out in his analysis, are common to psychopathic serial killers.
But -- and here's the part that may spark some controversy and defensive discussion -- these traits are also common to American politicians. (Maybe you already suspected.)
Yup. Violent homicide aside, our elected officials often show many of the exact same character traits as criminal nut-jobs, who run from police but not for office.
Kouri notes that these criminals are psychologically capable of committing their dirty deeds free of any concern for social, moral or legal consequences and with absolutely no remorse.
"This allows them to do what they want, whenever they want," he wrote. "Ironically, these same traits exist in men and women who are drawn to high-profile and powerful positions in society including political officeholders."
Good grief! And we not only voted for these people, we're paying their salaries and entrusting them to spend our national treasure in wise ways.
We don't know Kouri that well. He may be trying to manipulate all of us with his glib provocative pronouncements. On the other hand ...
"While many political leaders will deny the assessment regarding their similarities with serial killers and other career criminals, it is part of a psychopathic profile that may be used in assessing the behaviors of many officials and lawmakers at all levels of government."
-- Andrew Malcolm
Thursday, July 21, 2011
A court has rejected a 60-year-old man’s attempt to invoke the ancient right to trial by combat, rather than pay a £25 fine for a minor motoring offence.
Leon Humphreys remained adamant yesterday that his right to fight a champion nominated by the Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency (DVLA) was still valid under European human rights legislation. He said it would have been a “reasonable” way to settle the matter.
Magistrates sitting at Bury St Edmunds on Friday had disagreed and instead of accepting his offer to take on a clerk from Swansea with “samurai swords, Ghurka knives or heavy hammers”, fined him £200 with £100 costs.
Humphreys, an unemployed mechanic, was taken to court after refusing to pay the original £25 fixed penalty for failing to notify the DVLA that his Suzuki motorcycle was off the road.
After entering a not guilty plea, he threw down his unconventional challenge. Humphreys, from Bury St Edmunds, said: “I was willing to fight a champion put up by the DVLA, but it would have been a fight to the death.”
Tuesday, July 19, 2011
Friday, July 15, 2011
Monday, July 4, 2011
Sunday, July 3, 2011
Friday, June 24, 2011
Black Star News has an amazing story about Sunny and his victimization by the government.
Some mayor got convicted of bribery and perjury. The Sentence? Four years in prison. The mayor proceeds to vomit and flop about. The pictures are absolutely priceless. Every politician should have to go through the same shock and horror that is written on this mayor's face.
Tuesday, June 21, 2011
Sunday, June 19, 2011
Being a police officer is like being in the Special Olympics. Even if you get a medal, you are still retarded.
I apologize to the noble competitors in the Special Olympics for comparing them to something so low as police officers.
Tuesday, June 14, 2011
Friday, June 10, 2011
This is why I keep my bank account balance as low as possible at all times, and don't hoard fiat currency.
I just got off the phone with Pierre Jananovic . . . La Banque Postale has lowered the limits on the amounts of cash customers can withdraw per week by 50%. First of all, for you Americans and Brits, the way France works its banking system – customers are limited to how much they can withdraw per week from their accts no matter what the balance. Now what has happened here is that Gold card members – who could take out 3,000 euros a week – are now limited to 1,500 a week. This was sudden, without warning, and people here in France are freaking out. Pierre tells me that its the first clear sign that liquidity in the European banking system is drying up.
Thursday, June 9, 2011
Wednesday, June 1, 2011
Saturday, May 28, 2011
Tuesday, May 10, 2011
Brits break the law 21 times per year. Things like having sex in public, speeding, doing drugs, downloading copywritten material for free, not cleaning up dog poop. If these laws were enforced 100% of the time, then probably half of Britain would be behind bars. Of course, the article never mentions the mathematical consequences of this gross overcriminalization, nor does it wonder if perhaps there are too many laws on the books. The last few lines in the article are facepalm material:
John Miles added, 'The survey shows the average person who answered feels they break the law 21 times a year, but in reality this number is probably far greater.
'We are sure there are some things people wouldn't even know were illegal - particularly things like failing to clean up dog poo or dropping litter.
'There is a saying that 'rules are made to be broken', but when something has been made illegal it has to be for a good reason.'
Thursday, May 5, 2011
Monday, May 2, 2011
Wednesday, April 27, 2011
MarmaladeINFP said something I thought was profound.
There can be state socialism just as there can be state capitalism.
There can be anarcho-capitalism just as there can be anarcho-socialism.
Many anarcho-capitalists identify socialism as statism.
Many anarcho-socialists identify capitalism as statism.
Statism is statism no matter what ideological rhetoric is used to justify it, rightly or wrongly.
Anarchism is anarchism no matter what ideological rhetoric is used to justify it, rightly or wrongly.
Wednesday, April 20, 2011
Tuesday, April 19, 2011
Tuesday, April 12, 2011
Friday, April 8, 2011
In layman's terms, at least one of the reactors at Fukushima is still experiencing some degree of a nuclear chain reaction.
Jacob Spinney explains why the state is not great. The video is long, but the material is great quality. I also love how the title of his video is a play on the title of a Christopher Hitchens' book.
Monday, April 4, 2011
A former NHS director has died after spending 9 months on a medical waiting list. Let nobody say that the NHS gives unequal treatment to Britons. Here is irrefutable proof that all NHS
victims customers are given equally shitty service:
A former NHS director died after waiting for nine months for an operation - at her own hospital.
Margaret Hutchon, a former mayor, had been waiting since last June for a follow-up stomach operation at Broomfield Hospital in Chelmsford, Essex.
Thursday, March 31, 2011
Tuesday, March 22, 2011
Friday, March 18, 2011
Tuesday, March 15, 2011
Japan Imposes "Article 15"
Japan has banned all its government agencies, including its nuclear regulatory and protection agencies, from issuing any statements about the nuclear crisis situation in Japan, according to Yochi Shimatsu, former editor of the Japan Times.
Statements will only be issued from the senior level of the Japanese government.
"Article 15" is an article unfamiliar to most Japanese, including most Japanese journalists. It is apparently an emergency regulatory clause that allows the senior levels of the Japanese government to stop other Japanese government agencies from communicating with the public and news media.
Thursday, March 3, 2011
Look at all this shit Gaddafi had. The U.S. has much better bunkers for its rulers, to be sure. And they say libertarian conspiracy theorists are paranoid!
Just click on the link below to see the video at the Al Jazeera English site. I can't embed directly.
A glimpse into Gaddafi's palace - Africa - Al Jazeera English
Saturday, February 26, 2011
Tuesday, February 22, 2011
Thursday, February 17, 2011
Saturday, February 12, 2011
Wednesday, January 19, 2011
Monday, January 10, 2011
Friday, January 7, 2011
On New Year's Eve I went to a party. So did an undercover cop. I was on the guest list and got in for free, but the undercover cop was charged $20 at the door. The undercover porker found this to be unacceptable, as the party throwers apparently didn't pay racketeering protection money (aka apply for a permit) with the City of Los Angeles.
So the undercover cop called about 8 squad cars and kicked everyone out of the party. 500 people. At 11:30pm on New Year's Eve, everyone was standing on the street amongst overweight, insecure, jackbooted pigs.
But the tables were soon to be turned. At around 11:45pm, the pigs squealed off, all of them. So the partygoers did the only logical thing and resumed partying in the facility. They got to do the midnight countdown, and the party wasn't ruined after all.
The cops were out in force all across the city that night, with paid undercover agents (overtime pay no doubt), looking to bust up peaceful parties that were charging at the door but hadn't paid blood money to the parasites in City Hall. Let's break this down a bit more.
8 squad cars and a dozen or so pigs feeding from the overtime trough is going to cost more than the "permit fee" for the party itself. Essentially, the city is spending extra money to punish those mundanes who didn't give them money to begin with. Leave it to a government to double down on a financial loss.
Additionally, due to pressure on the cops to bust as many parties as possible, they left the scene as soon as they kicked everyone out, leaving it vulnerable for reacquisition by the partygoers, which makes the pigs' punitive actions rather ineffective. They won the battle, but lost the war.
The city failed to extort blood money in the form of permit fees.
The city spent additional money on terrorizing peaceful partygoers who did not pay such fees.
The pigs shut down the party for a measly fifteen minutes, thus failing in their punitive objective.
The party organizers still made a profit at the end of the night.
Partygoers: 4, City: 0.
Why do we have permits and fees? Why do we even have a police force, aside from the obvious Stockholm Syndrome answer? Why do we have a City Hall? Not only did the police and City Hall work exclusively against the people (on the people's dollar no less), but they spectacularly failed in every objective they set out to do!
But who ultimately pays for this failure? The police department? City Hall? No. The taxpayers are the one who ultimately pay for this failure. They pay money to be subjugated by incompetent pigs and councilmembers who cannot even subjugate properly. The taxpayers are paying for a punitive and detrminetal service that can't even punish or cause detriment properly. It is a metafailure sprinked with Stockholm Syndrome pixie dust.
Yet, despite everyone's best efforts (taxpayers included), the party was a success.
Here's to 2011!