Tuesday, December 30, 2014

We saw a clear demonstration after the death of two New York City police officers directed at the current Mayor of New York City.

U.S. Rep. Michael Grimm, center, leaves federal court in Brooklyn on Monday, April 29, 2014. Photo Credit: Charles Eckert
December 30, 2014
By Emily Ngo
The Staten Island (click here) prosecutor at the center of the Eric Garner case said Tuesday he is "very seriously considering" a bid for the congressional seat to be vacated by Rep. Michael Grimm, who pleaded guilty to felony tax evasion.
Daniel M. Donovan Jr. in a statement added that he is "deeply flattered by the enthusiastic expressions of support" he has received in the hours since Grimm announced late Monday that he would resign, effective Jan. 5....

Immediately after the police were killed in NYC the police union president, Patrick Lynch, sent a memo to his members to immediately conduct a work stoppage, except, for emergencies or obvious problems.
December 21, 2014
...“There’s blood on many hands tonight,” (click here) Lynch said Saturday. “Those that incited violence on this street under the guise of protest, that tried to tear down what New York City police officers did everyday.
“We tried to warn it must not go on, it cannot be tolerated. That blood on the hands starts on the steps of city hall in the office of the mayor.”...
Wow. That is a heck of an opening statement following the deaths of two minority police officers.

What do the members of the union expect from their union representatives? Probably, pay, benefits including vacation time, health and life insurance and SAFE WORKING CONDITIONS. Let's think about that for a moment.
Who really is culpable in the deaths of the two police officers? Certainly, we know the gunman and his martyrdom while already have killed his girlfriend in another state and carrying his gun all the way to NYC.

But, where was the bullet proof glass? Why didn't the police union focus on what was a safety issue rather than playing politics. Politics isn't going to save their lives, but, bullet proof glass would.

December 22, 2014
By Erin Durkin
Members of the Assembly and Senate (click here) on Sunday announced they're drafting a bill to mandate bulletproof glass in police vehicles across the state. All police cars should have bulletproof windows, state pols said Sunday after two cops were murdered in their car in Brooklyn.
Republican Assembly members Jim Tedisco and Nicole Malliotakis and Sens. Marty Golden and Phil Boyle announced in Sunday they're drafting legislation that would mandate bulletproof glass in the windows of squad cars at departments across the state.
The pols say part of the $5.2 billion state surplus should be used to pay for the vehicle upgrades.
"We provide police officers with bulletproof vests to protect them when they are on the streets patrolling. We should give them equal protection when they are in their police cars," said Golden, a retired NYPD officer.....

No one is a fortune teller to advise a NYPD officer he is facing grave danger today. That reality is all too obvious, especially, after deaths of two very valuable members of that police department. What society has are ways of protection for law enforcement that insure a greater safety, but, never an absolute safety. 

State lawmakers came together after the deaths of these officers to pass legislation that would mandate all police cars be fitted with bullet proof glass. There was no political wrangling, no rhetoric or pointing fingers laying blame for the deaths. They realized the folly of having police cars that were vulnerable to gun fire and they sought to make a difference in saving officers' lives.

The state legislature did that. The Governor did that. Whether it was at the asking of the New York City Mayor or not is not clear. The police union didn't do that. The president of the police union decided he was going to protect police differently and that also included the aggressive measures seen in NYC by police that have killed young African American men.

The president of the police union is not helping his members, but, causing a greater fear of them when they are doing their jobs. The president of the police union never expressed remedies that would stem any more such losses. There was not a learning moment for the president of the police union, there was inflammatory rhetoric that served no one and actually placed the uniformed police officers in the line of fire between citizens whom are completely unarmed and unable to protect themselves from choking. The president of the police union is not helpful, he is more the problem than anyone is willing to admit.

What happened after Scalise pandered for forgiveness?

The right wing media began their racist hate mongering. Oh, they didn't come out and praise Scalise or seek to carry the message of the European White Supremacists. No, no, nothing that clearly racist.

They used their media power to pound away at the House Speaker, a man I fondly call Speaker Boner. He was to be removed from his Speakership as soon as possible for appearing weak in asking Grimm to resign and in not standing up for Scalise.

Scalise is a member of many House Caucus. There is one membership he touts that begins to explain the rant from the Right Wing Media. Along with the Civil Air Patrol, Diary Farmers, Kidney, Cancer and Diabetes Caucus, Mr. Scalise is also a member of the:

Tea Party Caucus (click here)

You know the Tea Party. Sarah Palin and the Koch Brothers, that caucus. Now rightfully, the Tea Party is said to be far more low profiled and less extreme and that is why Mr. Scalise is Third in the line of Republicans in the House in regard to power and organizing the House vote.

So, the right wing media who is deeply in the pockets of Tea Party money came out to pressure the Speaker and his second in command Mr. McCarthy to back Mr. Scalise. Did it work? It sure did.

Boehner, McCarthy Circle the Wagons for Scalise (click here).

The Right Wing Media drew their racist weapons and shot at the feet of the Speaker and the House Majority Whip to seek to end the controversy regarding racism.

Let there be no doubt there is racism in the US Republican Party. It has been there for a long time and it continues to exist within it's ranks at the highest levels in the USA government. This is how it continues and why racism still carries a great deal of power within this country.

Now, about the NYPD.

Continued in the next entry.

The display of racism today by the RNC cannot be over looked.

Currently American media CHOOSES to be stenographers with very little analysis. The exception to that is MSNBC, but, even there the analysis was rather weak. This is going to be lengthy. It actually starts in May of 2007. 

My mother is 79 years old, is retired to North Carolina and has been a rock solid Democrat all her life. She has seen my father serve in local government and stood by him when he openly outed a man who wanted to bribe him for land use in our community. She is a great woman. She has raised three incredible daughters, all with careers and all that practiced birth control while she still prayed the rosary everyday. She is firm in her morality and it is reflected in her generous smile to everyone she meets. She judges no one. She states, that is God's job, not hers.

On May 2, 2007 my mother sat in front of a television while Barack Obama announced, as did Lincoln, he was running for president. She had seen him speak at the DNC convention and now she had to hear him announce.

May 2, 2007
SPRINGFIELD, Illinois (CNN) -- Sen. Barack Obama (click here) stood before a cheering crowd in his home state Saturday and announced he will seek the 2008 Democratic nomination for president.
Invoking the memory of fellow Illinoisan and the 16th president of the United States, Abraham Lincoln, the first-term senator addressed thousands packed into the Springfield, Illinois, town square on a chilly day in America's heartland....

She called me immediately after hearing his announcement and asked if I saw the next President of the USA announce today. I hadn't actually. I said, "No, I haven't seen the next President of the USA announce today, do you want to tell me who that is?"

She stated Senator Barack Obama. I told her he was new to the Senate and he was going to have a tough climb against any other Democratic candidate to win the nomination. Basically, I didn't really disagree, but, I wasn't convinced. However, my mother is rarely wrong. I mean it. When she sets her mind on something it happens. At the time she was 72 years old, my father was still alive and she was energized by his announcement. She stated, "You listen to me, he is going to not only win the Presidency, he is going to win North Carolina." I never said it to her as to not thwart her excitement, but, secretly I thought she really has lost some of her objectivity. Well, history tells the tale. Barack Hussein Obama became President of the USA with the help of North Carolina voters. Amazing.

This call from my mother happened before the global economic collapse. It was at a time when most editorials in the NYTimes were about a housing concern and financial markets. Paulson was in China most of the time. It was a time when the average American didn't have a clue, but, the USA economy was beginning to falter. It was before Lehman Brothers declared bankruptcy in 2008. That really is rarely discussed. There were many Americans behind Barack Obama for President before there was a major shift in confidence by Republicans and Independents due to the global economic collapse. Realizing that reality, rather than the reality pumped out by Republicans making excuses for the election of Barack Obama is most notable. 

I could write about a government that doesn't deal with racism among any of it's representatives, but, that isn't true of the Democratic electorate. If there are any people in this world that are color blind to ethnic differences in skin color it is many average Democrats in the USA. My mother is a prime example of that.


Realize what happened with the political rise of Mr. Steve Scalise.

December 29, 2014
By Ashley Parker and Alan Rappaport
WASHINGTON — Representative Steve Scalise of Louisiana, (click here) the No. 3 Republican in the House, addressed a group of white supremacists and neo-Nazis in 2002a Scalise spokeswoman confirmed Monday as his party prepared to take control of both chambers of Congress.

Mr. Scalise made his remarks to the European-American Unity and Rights Organization, which was founded two years earlier by David Duke, the former Ku Klux Klan leader and Louisiana politician. Mr. Scalise was a Louisiana state legislator at the time.

The Southern Poverty Law Center has described the organization — which uses EURO as an acronym — as a hate group, while noting that in recent years it has “accomplished little” and serves “primarily as a vehicle to publicize Duke’s writing and sell his books.”...

He began his political ambitions at the state level in Louisiana. His ambitions ran far beyond state politics. In 2002, he attended a meeting of White Supremacists. These White Supremacists were not at a local RNC meeting or any other party in Louisiana, this meeting was in Europe. Europe. Mr. Scalise had to get on a jet, quite possibly paid for by the organization that was beginning with this meeting, and he flew a long time to Europe. This wasn't a simple hop to the other end of Louisiana, it was to Europe whereby people have the time to write a speech to deliver at the meeting they were going to attend. Many hours passed and Mr. Scalise did not ask who was sponsoring said meeting. He didn't need a staff to run any vetting process. This was a meeting developed by a long standing Grand Dragon of the KKK, David Duke. Now, let's think about that a minute.

This was a new organization in Europe of White Supremacists. Mr. Scalise was attending this first meeting. Why was he important to David Duke? Why would David Duke go through a great deal of trouble to have Steve Scalise attend an organizational meeting of a European White Supremacist group? Scalise wasn't well known yet, but, here was this American with ambitions to win at the federal level making a speech in Europe. Did David Duke want those Europeans to buy into the idea of a global victory for them? You are damn right he did.

Now, the speech. A politician doesn't go to a meeting without knowing who is hearing his speech. Why? Because he wants to relate to the people at that meeting to leave an impression they won't forget. This wasn't a stump speech for votes, it was in Europe to SPECIAL INTERESTS.

Currently, Steve Scalise has a passport that may or may not have those stamps of passage into Europe and he is denying any sincere speech to White Supremacists. He had no clue who he was speaking to, but, he flew all the way to Europe to be confused about any racists leanings. Steve Scalise is a liar and his affiliations with racists is now on the record. He is considered someone of notable promise by David Duke. FACT.

So, yesterday evening and today, Steve Scalise has been making statements to roll back the controversy which has also seen the resignation of another GOP House member guilty of criminal charges. What else happened today? Media propaganda twisted to 'fit the reality' happened today. It was one of the major networks that even stated, there is absolutely no record of Scalise having voted in a manner consistent with racism. Really?

December 30, 2014
By Jake Sherman and John Bresnehan
...But Scalise’s record in Louisiana (click here) is now being closely reviewed for any signs of racial bias. As a state representative in Baton Rouge, for example, Scalise voted twice against establishing Martin Luther King Jr.’s birthday as a holiday. His congressional leadership office has yet to explain those votes.

And in 1997, Scalise voted against a bill to prohibit hate crimes based on race, class or sexual orientation.

Scalise's votes in the state legislature in Louisiana were extreme even to that state. The opposition vote to both those measures in the State of Louisiana were in the single digits and he was one of them. Does that mean he is a racist? Maybe. But, it tells everyone he is willing to do the work of a racist if he wins with their votes.

Why did David Duke ask him to speak in Europe? Because Scalise had demonstrated his willingness to carry their cause in his power within a legislature.

Continued in next entry.

There is strong evidence that Mr. Scalise has lied and has used race as an election tool.

Any idea racism had worn off is not innocence to the fact it exists as an election tool. His statement acknowledges that in the past being a racist is an uptick to campaign results. The question remains what did he do politically and personally to dispel racism and promote equality?

Even attending a White Supremacist meeting is a violation of the trust any American electorate has placed in their choices. This isn't about the politics of the USA House, Mr. Scalise does not turn 2014 elections from Republican to Democrat; this is about racism and the importance of removing it from our country. Racism has ripples in the real lives of African Americans and the Jewish Community. This is not a minor issue, this is about the USA and it's importance in global dialogues as well.

December 30, 2014

...Far from pleading ignorance about Duke, (click here) Scalise was described by Roll Call in 1999 as saying he “embraces many of the same ‘conservative’ views as Duke, but is far more viable” as a candidate for an open congressional seat.

“The novelty of David Duke has worn off,” said Scalise then. “The voters in this district are smart enough to realize that they need to get behind someone who not only believes in the issues they care about, but also can get elected. Duke has proven that he can’t get elected, and that’s the first and most important thing.” Electability, rather than the odiousness of Duke’s views, seemed to be pre-eminent in Scalise’s mind at the time.

The 2002 EURO event in question also received local coverage, further undercutting any suggestion that Scalise was unaware of the group’s background. An alternative weekly newspaper in New Orleans, The Gambit, wrote in 2002 that a baseball team from Iowa refused to stay at the Best Western where EURO was holding its event, citing the organization’s “controversial views.”...

This information appears not just on the Southern Poverty Law Center, but, on "Hatewatch" (click here) as well. There was very little trace of this anywhere until the outing of him recently. It speaks to the sad covert manner in which hate and racism exists in the USA.

Voting rights laws and gerrymandering are discriminatory practices.

Those in power like to provide reassurances to their political donors regarding the outcome of any election. It is called cronyism and it is backed by corrupt discriminatory practices. These practices have to end. No more toying with our democracy.
December 30, 2014
By Jordan Carleo-Evangelist
County lawmakers on Monday (click here) forcefully rejected a proposed settlement to a three-year-old voting rights lawsuit, sending the case back to federal court with an emphatic rebuke of County Executive Dan McCoy.
The settlement would have ended the complex and increasingly costly case alleging racial imbalances in the county's political map by, among other things, establishing a fifth legislative district in which minority voters are a majority.
And while several of the majority Democratic lawmakers said that they support that goal, they blasted McCoy for freezing the legislature out of the settlement process and accused him of overstepping his authority in trying to dictate how the new lines would be drawn.
High on the list of grievances is that the settlement would have prescribed the makeup of the county's redistricting commission, a task legislative leaders said is clearly lawmakers' prerogative.
The vote was 34-3, with even some of the Democratic executive's Republican allies opposing it.
"I think everybody believed that legislative process should be a legislative process," legislature Chairman Shawn Morse, a Cohoes Democrat, said after the vote....

December 27, 2014
By Vanzetta Penn McPherson

In two weeks, (click here) we will begin a 365-day observance of two American milestones and the imperatives that triggered them - imperatives and milestones that no one wants to talk about. On this eve of 2015, 50 years after the Selma-To-Montgomery March and the 60 years after the Montgomery Bus Boycott, it is critical that we plan observances that reflect the serious, revolutionary impact of the Voting Rights Act, the legislative progeny of 1965's mass protests.

Before the VRA was passed, African Americans were systematically and ruthlessly disenfranchised by murders, lynchings, employment terminations, poll taxes, and curious other machinations. It took two constitutional amendments, several Supreme Court decisions, countless lower court decisions, and serial protests during the Civil Rights Movement simply to create a playing field upon which blacks could reasonably expect to participate in the American democracy....

Stop killing young black men. All the grand juries that have exonerated the murders of these men need to be revisited in prosecution of the deaths.

The practice of exoneration of police through the grand jury process has to end. The unjustified deaths of these men have to be prosecuted. That needs to begin now. Corruption is no excuse for killing.

December 29, 2014
By Dan Whitcom
(Reuters) - An unarmed 25-year-old black man slain (click here) by Los Angeles police officers in August suffered three gunshot wounds, including one to his back, a long-awaited autopsy report into the killing showed on Monday.
Police have said two officers shot Ezell Ford, described by a family lawyer as mentally challenged, on Aug. 11 after he struggled with one of them and tried to grab the officer's holstered gun.
Ford's death, which came just days after the fatal shooting of 18-year-old Michael Brown by a white police officer in Ferguson, Missouri, touched off demonstrations outside police headquarters in Los Angeles.

More protests were expected for Monday afternoon following release of the report, which was completed some time ago but kept under wraps by police officials during their investigation into the incident....

Scientists have located patient zero in the recent outbreak of a more virulent Ebola.

A different species of bat was presented in this strain of Ebola virus. It's initial victim was a 2 year old child expected to have played in the location of a dead tree which harbored the bats.

The entire circumstance of the people of West Africa is dire. There is simply no quality of life, they have been abandoned to profound poverty with no escaping it.

Recently, the presence of malaria has increased and now out numbers the cases of Ebola. The global community must address areas of permanent poverty and the dangers that await them and the rest of the world. The communities within these lands have been ignored far too long.

December 30, 2014
By David Quamman
The Ebola epidemic of 2014, which has now totaled almost 20,000 cases and at least 7,708 deaths, began quietly in southeastern Guinea slightly more than a year ago. News of the outbreak reached the wider world last March, and within weeks Leendertz assembled a multidisciplinary team that included ecologists and veterinarians, plus an anthropologist to interview local people, and traveled to the affected area, near the borders of Liberia and Ivory Coast.
Surveying wildlife in forests there, the scientists found no evidence of a die-off among larger animals, such as duikers, monkeys, and chimpanzees, that are also susceptible to Ebola. This suggested that perhaps the virus had spilled over directly from its reservoir host into humans, without passing through other animals hunted or scavenged for food....

How impoverished are these people? They use bat meat in their diets. In the past it has been the ingestion of these bats that have caused the outbreak. The past is the past and the isolation of the virus is no longer a practice to protect the world. The fact remains these people are the victim to fear and lack of resources to combat the virus. These people need a great deal of help in removing the living conditions they have come to know.

The journal currently publishing the article identifying the bat responsible for this more virulent strain of virus has strong proof of the extent to which these viruses can destroy human life.

EMBO Molecular Medicine

Volume 1Issue 1pages 10–18April 2009
Article first published online: 26 MAR 2009
  1. Byron E.E. Martina and
  2. Albert D.M.E. Osterhaus
...the discovery of the filoviruses, (click here) Marburg virus (MARV) and Ebola virus (EBOV) in 1967 and 1976 respectively, refuelled the fear that viruses of this family Filoviridae could, similar to smallpox virus, sweep around the globe in a matter of weeks, and kill millions of people. That fear provided the incentive for several countries to establish an infrastructure for studies aiming at the development of intervention strategies for such highly pathogenic (category 4) microorganisms. However, rather than witnessing such a pandemic filovirus outbreak, the world was instead confronted in the early 1980s with the more insidious pandemic viral outbreak of AIDS, caused by the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV). Although AIDS was identified only two and a half decades ago, the HIV pandemic belongs to the most devastating plagues in human history. Nevertheless, the high fatality rate of filovirus infections, the potential of filoviruses as bioterrorist agents and the high media attention for outbreaks caused by viruses of this family, have further increased the fear for outbreaks caused by these viruses. Furthermore, the increasing number of newly emerging and re-emerging virus infections in humans and animals in the past decades, as well as the general perception that the global capacity and infrastructure to adequately respond to such threats are insufficient, had had a negative impact on public confidence in our overall preparedness to combat such challenges. Obviously, the most important question in this regard is whether filoviruses do indeed pose a global threat and whether they may be the cause of future pandemics.

It is in the best interest of every country on Earth to improve the quality of life of the people of West Africa. There should be no delay.

NYPD is staging a work stoppage. This is the unmitigated intimidation police unions carry.

There needs to be an order for the police to return to work or given permanent unpaid leave. Eric Garner's death means nothing, just all in a day's work. This is an over reach by the police union in NYC. Police safety is an issue, but, also at issue is the deaths of unarmed New Yorkers. 

December 29, 2014
By Larry Celona, Shawn Cohen and Bruce Golding
NYPD traffic tickets and summonses for minor offenses have dropped off by a staggering 94 percent following the execution of two cops — as officers feel betrayed by the mayor and fear for their safety, The Post has learned.
The dramatic drop comes as Police Commissioner Bill Bratton and Mayor Bill de Blasio plan to hold an emergency summit on Tuesday with the heads of the five police unions to try to close the widening rift between cops and the administration.
The unprecedented meeting is being held at the new Police Academy in Queens at 2 p.m., sources said.
Angry union leaders have ordered drastic measures for their members since the Dec. 20 assassination of two NYPD cops in a patrol car, including that two units respond to every call....

Why hasn't Zaki-ur Rehman Lakhvi been extradited to India?

December 30, 2014

Mumbai attack mastermind Zaki-ur Rehman Lakhvi (click here) was Tuesday arrested in an abduction case just before his release following a Pakistani court's suspension of his detention under a public security order which had evoked a strong reaction from India.
The move came after New Delhi summoned Pakistan high commissioner Abdul Basit to register "strong concern" that "there seems to be no end in sight to Pakistan remaining a safe-haven for well-known terror groups" after the court's soft-pedalling on Lakhvi.
Foreign secretary Sujatha Singh summoned Basit in New Delhi and the Indian mission in Islamabad took up the issue with the Pakistan Foreign Office....

This man was responsible for the deaths of people in Mumbai. He has no regard to human life and the Pakistan government is actually entertaining his release. 

The Mumbai Attacks were 12 coordinated shootings and bombings that lead to the death of 164 people with another 308 wounded. There should be no release of any of the participants. They are murderers of 164 deaths and should serve the jail time for each and everyone of them in consecutive order. The sentence for any of these murderers should be 164 life sentences served one after the other. Any release of these men should be a matter of national security and prohibited.

The attacks did not happen in one location. These attackers wanted to destroy any government in Mumbai. India's national security guards has to deploy an operation after these attacks to find the remaining people involved. If the Indian government did not conduct those additional raids on the plans of the attackers, Mumbai would have significantly more deaths and disruption in the government. There is nothing that should justify the release of any of the convicted.

There are twenty-six countries represented in the dead of Mumbai. Everyone of them can demand justice and extradition if Pakistan is unable to maintain the imprisoning of these attackers.

In addition to those who died are some Indian security police that gave their lives in apprehending these men and ending the conspiracy against the Indian government. 

Political oppression in Russia. At least the courts didn't hand down the severest penalties.

The company in question brought no charges against the brothers. The international community should respond what appears to be oppression of political activists. This is outrageous. It appears Russia can simply drum up charges to oppression political freedom.
MOSCOW, November 7 (RAPSI) - Christian Melnik, Financial Director of the cosmetics company Yves Rocher Vostok, (click here) said in court on Friday that the company has no claims against opposition leader Alexei Navalny and his brother Oleg, according to Navalny’s Twitter account.
The Zamoskvoretsky District Court on Friday continued questioning witnesses in the Yves Rocher embezzlement case.
Alexei Navalny is a Russian political and public figure, leader of the Party of Progress. He ran for Moscow mayor and is the author of one of the most popular political blogs that was banned for promoting unauthorized public protests.
Navalny and his brother Oleg stand accused in a fraud case involving cosmetics company Yves Rocher Vostok. Investigators allege that the Navalny brothers embezzled up to 26 million rubles (about $575,500) from the cosmetics company, as well as close to 4 million rubles ($88,500) from the Multidisciplinary Processing Company by way of a fraud scheme. The brothers were further charged with having laundered 21 million rubles ($464,752)....

Russia is making martyrs of their political activists when they pose are real threat. Martyrs and their oppression never go away. Their oppression only brings more attention to political freedom and the desire for a large part of Russia to enjoy it. Political activists are rarely discredited in the views of their supporters.

December 30, 2014
By Isabel Gorst

...“This time (click here) the authorities are not simply trying to humiliate and imprison their political opponents,” he told reporters after the hearing. They are specially trying to humiliate and torment the relatives of the people who are their political opponents.”...

To be completely honest, the sentences by the court seem to indicate they are protesting the draconian government in Moscow as well.

...The court had planned to rule in the current case after Russia celebrated the New Year holidays, but in a surprise move, the hearing was abruptly moved to Tuesday after thousands of Navalny’s supporters pledged to stage a protest in Moscow on Jan. 15.
“By moving up the verdict, the Russian authorities apparently sought to diminish planned demonstrations,” Human Rights Watch said in a statement Tuesday. “They also pushed those planning to protest a guilty verdict to the margins of the law, by denying them enough time to comply with local regulations” requiring police approval for large public gatherings....

The Russian Duma acted to allow a third term by President Putin, it isn't as though he has problems staying in office. When political activists become political prisoners that only indicts the government and adds proof and fuel to the opposition. This is really bad judgement by the Russian government. The way to defeat political activists is to actually win elections. The process of winning elections is all to easy when a candidate as the command of large sums of campaign funds, as example is the USA. This entire imprisonment 'thing' that happens to opposition candidates is completely silly.

Rick Snyder is attempting to reward his campaign supporters by redefining what a gun is.

This is a priority of the NRA, not citizens. This is obvious manipulation of the law by the Michigan governor. This demand by the governor has nothing to do with public safety or jobs, it is purely another attempt by the NRA to conduct weapons anarchy. The NRA has to point to it's influence in government to maintain and promote it's members and their contributions. Snyder should be investigated to the contributions by the NRA and others that influence the laws of Michigan. It is corruption.

December 29, 2014
By Jonathan Oosting
...Snyder, (click here) in a veto letter to lawmakers, noted that the original air gun package had included three other House bills that did not reach his desk. As a result, he said he was left to consider an incomplete package.
“Because only part of the pneumatic gun reform package has been enrolled and presented to me for signature, the enactment of these bills would result in a variety of contracting definitions of ‘firearm’ across our statutes,” he wrote.
The legislation would have changed the definition of firearm in the Natural Resources and Environmental Protection Act but not Michigan firearms laws, the governor continued.
“In short, the enactment of these four senate bills would result in a situation that would be extremely confusing for both law enforcement and gun owners.”
The National Rifle Association had supported the full package in committee, testifying that Michigan is one of just four states that classifies most air guns as firearms, making them more difficult to purchase or move between states.

Actions speak louder than words.

Rep. Steve Scalise is correct to speak out against any hate group, but, his legislative record needs to be clear of any advocacy. Any financial donation that implicates his acceptance of hate needs to end and the monies returned. There can be no indication anywhere he accepts such priorities as a potential of influence in USA law. The minorities of the USA have been assaulted regularly at the State level with laws that oppress their participation in elections and that needs to stop. Rep. Scalise has to represent all his constituents and not just a chosen few.
December 30, 2014
By Catalina Carnia
Rep. Steve Scalise, (click here) the House’s No. 3-ranking GOP leader, said he doesn’t support the views of a white supremacist group he addressed in 2002.
Scalise spoke to the (New Orleans) Times-Picayune amid an uproar over his appearance at a conference of the European-American Unity and Rights Organization, an organization founded by David Duke, a former Ku Klux Klan leader and ex-state lawmaker. The Southern Poverty Law Center classifies EURO as a hate group.
Scalise’s appearance at the EURO event was reported Sunday by CenLamar.com, a liberal blog run by Lamar White Jr. At the time of the event, Scalise was a Louisiana state legislator.
“I didn’t know who all of these groups were and I detest any kind of hate group,” Scalise said in the Times-Picayune interview published Monday night. “For anyone to suggest that I was involved with a group like that is insulting and ludicrous.”...

AirAsia has far less liability than any other airline crash in the region.

Sympathies to the families for their loss. It may be very difficult for them financially to recover from this tragedy.

December 30, 2014
By Edna Curran
HONG KONG—The AirAsia Flight 8501 disaster (click here) has cast a spotlight on an insurance treaty that could restrict compensation for victim’s families to a fraction of the assistance offered to victims of the Malaysia Airlines disasters this year, experts say.
Indonesia, unlike its neighbors Malaysia or Singapore, hasn’t signed the Montreal Convention, an international treaty that offers payments from airlines covering total liability of around $170,000 a passenger and covers advance payments for accommodation and transport costs for the families of victims after an air crash. Carriers based in countries that have signed the 2003 treaty are liable for the compensation, which is separate from personal insurance contracts.
Indonesia observes an older aviation agreement—the Warsaw Convention of 1929—which has a substantially lower liability limit per victim of around $8,300 according to one expert’s estimates, and doesn't require advance payments for passenger’s families....

...Some passengers may be covered by the Montreal Convention, however. For example, passengers with a one-way or return ticket from Indonesia to Singapore will be governed by the Warsaw treaty, but if the passenger had departed from a country that ratified the Montreal agreement and the final destination was also a signatory to the convention, that victim is eligible for compensation under the newer aviation agreement.
“It comes down to individual claims. You have a hundred plus passengers--some may have purchased tickets in different countries, some may have been on a leg of a three-leg ticket that was covered by Montreal,” said Robert Jensen, Chief Executive of Kenyon International Emergency Services, a crisis and disaster management company.
The International Air Transport Association has in the past urged Indonesia to ratify the Montreal Convention, last year even specifically warning of the dangers if a plane crashes from the country en route to Singapore.