Monday, April 13, 2015

There is a history of culture problems in San Bernardino County's Sheriff's Department.

January 25, 2013

Another embarrassing incident for the San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Department. (click here)
Another Deputy alleged to have had sex with a inmate. This time at the Glen Helen Rehabilitation Center in Devore. The incident follows a similar event made public just a week or so before.
Combine this developing news, with a series of Deputy-Explorer sex scandals from the past two years, and it just doesn’t look too good at this point.
Discipline and organizational attitudes flow from the top down and something has to change.
Newly-appointed Sheriff-Coroner John McMahon has two important tasks he must face if he’s to be successful.
Those tasks being; re-establish discipline in the ranks; and keeping District Attorney Michael Ramos at bay from sinking his claws into him.
I’ve done some checking recently and it looks as if McMahon still has pretty much no significant baggage. He’s a family man without any known predisposition for womanizing, and an essentially good reputation and record....

This is the county where Chris Dorner attempted to hide from authorities.

February 11, 2014
By Rina Palta

The officers involved in the standoff (click here) and shootout that ultimately led to the death of ex-LAPD cop Christopher Dorner acted lawfully by using deadly and non-deadly force against him. The conclusion is included in the San Bernardino County District Attorney's Office final report on the incident, which was made public on Tuesday. The complete report can be read below. 

On February 12, 2013, Dorner died in a cabin in the San Bernardino Mountains after a lengthy shootout with law enforcement agents. At that point, Dorner had killed three people: two civilians in Irvine and an officer in Riverside, according to authorities. There was a massive manhunt for him, which stretched into Mexico and neighboring states. He later killed a San Bernardino County sheriff's deputy during the shootout near Big Bear, according to authorities....

Chris Dorner was armed. He was not only armed, he was lethal. Not everyone in this county is Chris Dorner. The mistreatment by police or sheriff deputies of people that may be facing charges will only work in the favor of the criminal if there is abuse and brutality involved. 

April 15, 2013
By Tami Abdollah

LOS ANGELES — A San Bernardino County (click here) sheriff's deputy killed in a shootout with a man believed to be fugitive former LAPD officer Chris Dorner had gone into the search happy to help his community but wary of the dangers.
San Bernardino County Sheriff John McMahon identified the deputy Wednesday as Jeremiah MacKay, a man who grew up in the area and followed his father into public service.
MacKay suffered multiple gunshot wounds Tuesday and was transported to Loma Linda Hospital where he died of his injuries. He was 35.
MacKay was a detective who had been with the department for 15 years.... 

The DOJ needs to assess these problems as profound. They are everywhere. It almost doesn't matter the state. There are problems with the police culture in the USA. It may or may not have anything to do with the militarization of the police. But, whatever it is there needs to be a change in the methodology. 

My concerns may be unfounded, but, the police may very well be creating their own problems with violence in law enforcement that kills officers. It may be a self defeating strategy. The more violent the police, the more violent the community in response to the police force. The deadly instances were initiated over the most minor of charges. That methodology has  to change across the country. There are other ways of policing minor incidents than engaging police officers.

Add to that the 'pay to play' stuff in Tulsa and the DOJ is looking at some very ugly situations with unknown reasons for their occurrence. How could a 73 year old man volunteer for a police sting operation? That is just bizarre. I always thought police sting operations were about dangerous crime networks, not a single man with one gun for sale. According to what is being reported, there was more than a good reason to arrest Mr. Harris if he was engaging in illegal activity. So, why the sting operation in the first place? The entire circumstances in this instance is out of line with any form of policing methodology.

If they want to talk military than talk the truth, not a return to the past.

Daesh or as General Dempsey prefers ISIL which he believes more representative of the genocidal enemy.

This map was displayed today by the US military.

By Terri Moon Cronk
DoD News, Defense Media Activity

WASHINGTON, April 13, 2015 – Some 25 percent to 30 percent (click here) of Iraqi territory has been taken back from Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant terrorist group control by coalition forces, Army Col. Steve Warren told reporters today.

Warren, a Pentagon spokesman, showed reporters a color-coded map of key populated sites in northern and central Iraq where ISIL was once the dominant force before Combined Joint Task Force Operation Inherent Resolve pushed the terrorists back.

Overall, he said, the map shows how “the combination of coalition air power and Iraqi ground forces are having an effect on the enemy’s ability to hold territory and to have freedom of maneuver,” he said.

“This equates to approximately 5,000 square miles to 6,000 square miles [of Iraq territory] since the peak of [ISIL] territorial influence in Iraq in August 2014,” Warren noted. “ISIL has lost large areas where it was once dominant.”
Essentially, he added, the ISIL front line has been pushed either west or south, depending on location, he said, in integral areas such as Erbil, Babil, Baghdad and the Kirkuk governances....

Rubio isn't running for President. He is running for Vice President.

He is a well rehearsed Republican, through and through. They want to cast the USA back to the 1950s. This is 2015 where our younger generations have to compete on an international scale. I don't think the rest of the world is returning to 1950. His vision of the USA is ancient, no different than most other Republicans. It isn't based in reality.

The USA, no different than China when it expands it's Middle Class, will never be 'just another country.' The USA's consumer base will never make it 'just another country.' That is all political nonsense. 

Whenever Rubio makes a speech, he always sounds depressed and burdened. Poor man. 

Rubio holds a sword presented to him by then Gov. Jeb Bush, during ceremonies designating Rubio as the next Florida Speaker of the House in 2005. He became the first Cuban-American to serve in that capacity. 

April 13, 2015
...In 2006, (click here) Rubio became the first Cuban-American House speaker in Florida, and tells his parents' story often as a point of pride. But that story has also created an issue that may get stirred up again during his campaign — his grandfather was once ordered deported from the U.S. but stayed anyway.

He was once (briefly) Mormon.
The Rubio family, which was Catholic, moved from Florida to Nevada in the late 1970s and joined the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. According to Buzzfeed, the family was strongly influenced by first cousins living in the area who had converted to the faith a few years prior.

The Florida senator was baptized into the Mormon faith when he was approximately 8 years old, and family members recalled that he was deeply invested in the religion having met with missionaries, attended LDS youth events and even formed a singing group with his sister a la The Osmonds, who are among the most famous members of the Latter-Day Saints....

"The Freedom Tower" represents the best of America? I think he means the Statue of Liberty. He is at the "W"rong crossroads.

Iranian, Israeli experts sat "at the same table."

Yes, Israel and Iran sat at the same table for a meeting at the Nuclear Test Ban Treaty.

This has to be the most hideous drawing in the world. Does anyone stop to realize what would happen to the entire region if a nuclear weapon was released? See, the other countries? See the Persian Gulf and all the other waters in the region. Hello?

Any thought about building nuclear weapons in the region is absolutely absurd.  

Yes, this occurred April 13, 2015. Today.  No, it wasn't the Shah.

April 13, 2015
By Dan Williams

JERUSALEM, April 13 (Reuters) - Iran and Israel (click here) have been cooperating under the auspices of an international body set up to monitor a ban on nuclear bomb tests, its director said on Monday.
Negotiated in the 1990s, the Comprehensive Nuclear Test Ban Treaty enjoys wide global support but must be ratified by eight more nuclear technology states -- among them Israel and Iran, as well as Egypt and the United States -- to come into force. In the interim, Middle East signatories have regularly held technical meetings, including in Jordan in November and December to practise detecting illicit testing. "Iran took part in the drill. Egypt was part of this drill. I think all the Arab countries were represented in Jordan for this exercise," Lassina Zerbo, executive secretary of the Preparatory Commission for the Comprehensive Nuclear Test Ban Treaty Organization (CTBTO), said during a visit to Israel....

I can't watch that video anymore. That is the case with all of them.

I think it is because my image of police is so rattled by their actions in these incidents. That has been true since James Boyd. I simply can't watch people die at the hand of police. Boyd's death was so heinous. It is terrible to watch unarmed people being cut down by police. It is not something I can do over and over again.

April 13, 2013
By Emily Schapiro and Clayton Sandell

...The 73-year-old volunteer (click here) reserve deputy in Oklahoma who fatally shot a suspect in an incident that the Tulsa County Sheriff's Office called "inadvertent" has now been charged with second-degree manslaughter, the Tulsa County District Attorney's Office said today. 

Reserve deputy Robert Bates shot and killed Eric Harris April 2 after the deputy allegedly mistook his handgun for a stun-gun, officials said. 

"Mr. Bates is charged with Second-Degree Manslaughter involving culpable negligence. Oklahoma law defines culpable negligence as ‘the omission to do something which a reasonably careful person would do, or the lack of the usual ordinary care and caution in the performance of an act usually and ordinarily exercised by a person under similar circumstances and conditions,'” Tulsa County District Attorney Steve Kunzweiler said in a statement today. 

"The defendant is presumed to be innocent under the law but we will be prepared to present evidence at future court hearings."...

There is a much longer video about Mr. Harris's interaction with police. Below is some of the information about emergency treatment on the scene.

Okay. Some of the agitation resulted from a dropping blood pressure. 

Changes in mental status (difficulty concentrating, confusion) or a sense of "impending doom" or anxiety. (click here)

A trauma patient has to be transported immediately if at all possible. There are a few issues with trauma wounds including infection. I assume bullets are not sterile. So, when a bullet enters the body there is a lot going on.

Right about now the right wing control freaks are stating, "What right does she have in even be interested in the outcome of a felon?"

What right? Every right. The fact of the matter is everyone in the USA is considered innocent until proven guilty. There are also habeas corpus RIGHTS afforded everyone in the USA, be they ordinary citizen, criminal or Undocumented. Everyone in the USA is considered a person unto themselves and that is protected by law. 

This is a prime example of how a police sting operation can go wrong. Very few times are emergency facilities provided with any insight to the potential for gun shot wounds sustained by officers and/or those involved in what is perceived as crime. If police would just have an EMT station on alert to potential trauma due to a police operation, they might even protect their own.

Why weren't the EMTs in touch with the hospital emergency room so they could be providing information about an incoming patient including ETA?

I guarantee you police have no clue about what to expect after a shooting. The sudden insult to the body, the loss of large amounts of blood and the signs and symptoms of blood loss and HYPOTENSION due to that INJURY. 

The report today by "Tulsa World" and the added video of Mr. Harris provides more information about the police operation. I'm sorry, but, I don't know why Mr. Harris was even the suspect of a sting operation unless this was evidence of a much larger gun purchasing organization that sends weapons to Mexico.

I am fed up with police operations and arrests that kill Americans when they are MARGINALLY in offense of the law. We saw the same type of operation with Mr. Garner. The police have NO BIG FISH to fry and they are focusing on what is basically minimal crime? I don't find Mr. Harris's backpack as a location for anything other than one gun he wanted to sell. That is a major offense in Tulsa?

April 13, 2015
By Corey Jones

“The (patient) was very combative physically, (click here) and we were unable to get him to hold still long enough to get any accurate vitals,” the report reads.
The report further states that firefighters tried to communicate with Harris but he “ignored most all questions,” the only information gleaned was his name from a credit card and an age he told them.
He soon was transferred to EMSA’s care at which point the narrative indicates his condition began to deteriorate.
“He became unresponsive and eventually went into cardiac arrest,” according to the report, which also states firefighters began to perform cardio-pulmonary resuscitation.
There are two critical things to take from the report that are inconsistent with what the Sheriff’s Office has released, Smolen said.
The first, he noted, is that deputies couldn’t have been rendering aid to Harris as he sat with his hands cuffed behind his back.
“Because of the position that he was in, nobody could have been rendering any aid to him,” Smolen said. “That’s why the Fire Department had to order him to be unhandcuffed and laid down before they could start CPR.”
Asked if the clotting of the wound was indicative of receiving treatment, Smolen said the question would be best answered by a doctor.
Tulsa County sheriff’s Maj. Shannon Clark said there is only so much deputies can do for a gunshot victim without access to equipment in an ambulance and medical professionals.

Exactly the point. In the field an EMT could start fluids to provide additional blood volume to the victim. 

When a person receives a gun shot would the very first thing anyone on the scene can do is apply pressure to the wound CONTINUALLY until the EMTs arrive. The victim should never be told or forced to sit up because that only increases the chance the brain is not getting enough blood and circulation is compromised. The gun shot victim should be kept lying until help arrives as the pressure is continued at the site.

Putting pressure on a wound and even placing a bandage to protect the wound site from further contamination is BASIC FIRST AID. You mean to tell me police officers don't know basic first aid? 

Deputies applied pressure to Harris’ wound, Clark said, and they also sat him up so he could breathe more easily because he complained he was having difficulties breathing. He was deemed a threat by deputies, who still believed him to be armed, so he remained in cuffs, Clark said....

The idea the police would actually provide any protection to the gun shot victim's health is not an issue, if the police aren't shooting people instead of chasing them. Mr. Harris was already on the ground by the police when he was shot.

Clark said the video released by the Sheriff’s Office clearly shows Harris continued to resist deputies until they had him detained.

“Once the hands went behind his back and were secured, there was no more resistance,” Clark said.

That is a really lousy definition of resistance to police if it allows additional assaults to the body such as taser, chock hold and/or gun shots. There are several officers there and the suspect was limited in his motion. There was no reason to render him unconscious by any means, including taser. HE WAS UNARMED.

Smolen also calls into question statements from the Sheriff’s Office asserting Harris admitted to medical personnel that he was on a drug called PCP.

The Fire Department report makes no direct mention of PCP. In a section on spinal immobilization, “Yes” is typed in a field for evidence of alcohol or drug impairment. However, on the report’s front page under clinical impressions “Unknown” is typed next to the alcohol/drugs question.

PCP. Does anyone in the law enforcement community believe there are difficult patients to control in a hospital? 

The hospital doesn't use guns and tasers to control patients, they use medical personnel to bring a patient into a restraint position and at the very worst four point restraint is used. 

There were at least three cars and six police involved in Mr. Harris's death. It is on the first video. That is six people supposedly able to come to the purpose of restraining an unarmed person. That's not enough? The EMT were on the way and with a physician's permission could have injected the suspect with a medication to reduce or completely end the struggle.

Any person receiving any wounds regardless of where or how should be evaluated by the emergency room for potential complications. But, a sting operation can avoid a lot of lost time and danger to life if they only plan for it.

My first opportunity to understand the interaction of law enforcement with the Black Community was Trayvon Martin. The loss of innocent Black lives started long before then. But, since I have been paying closer attention to police methodology and this covert culture of lies in documentation, it is very easy to say the USA has some of the most unprepared police officers on the planet. For police forces that rely on guns to control behavior, I would think they would have their act together simply to avoid any potential murder charges. 

But, until recently, police were above the law, so why would anyone bother about it. 

I know there are better ways and there are plenty of people in the USA right now who are retired that knows there are better ways, too. So, what seems to be the problem? 

“We are not interested in playing this entire case out in the court of public opinion,” Clark said, adding that if Smolen feels there are issues surrounding the situation, he can pursue legal recourse.

The statement should have read, "We are not interested in any demonstrations by the Black Community." Public opinion? There is no opinion here, there is profound fear for lives not held in esteem and very lax police work and standards on a regular basis.

Is it that difficult to find quality police officers? 

The short courses in police training have to end and be replaced with far longer preparedness. Longer courses for expertise rather than man hours will result in a safer public, rather than a public that grows increasing concerned for police work and the deaths it causes. "Police in Training" can still work, but, in a diminished capacity. 

There has to be sincere changes in the training of police officers INCLUDING reports about their culture on a regular basis. The culture has got to go. There is a wall of silence between the officers and the truth. 

What is really scary is the very fact this is happening across the country.  

See the entry below and before this entry? Snowflakes. That is me. I worry about Earth more than anyone can imagine. Now, how is it I have so many entries that aren't about snowflakes? Huh? This was not a routine or profession for me, okay? Think about it.

This week in the USA is going to see weather alerts across the country.

Have you ever seen how a snowflake is formed? Matt Sampson shows us new images of these frozen wonders, taken on a macro level.

April 13, 2015

The calendar may say mid-April, but we have our eyes on a system that may produce significant snowfall for the Rocky Mountains, including the Denver metro area this week.
The culprit is a sharp southward plunge of the jet stream which will drive into the Northwest Monday, then the northern Rockies and Great Basin Tuesday, bringing lowering snow levels to the Cascades, Bitterroots and Wasatch, not to mention high winds to the Great Basin....

This is from the National Weather Service (click here)

A word about Iran from Dr. Ernest Moriz.

In his pivotal contribution (click here for article in Prometheus - a scientific policy blog by the University of Colorado) to the US-Iran nuclear negotiations, Ernest Moniz, US Secretary of Energy, offers a role model of how to integrate science and politics.

Both Secretary Kerry and President Obama has stated the agreement with Iran brokered in Switzerland is based in access and transparency. There is no debating this agreement as political fodder. It is a very serious document.

April 12, 2015
The Washington Post Op-Ed

...Iran has repeatedly emphasized (click here) its commitment to a peaceful program, but today’s reality of national and U.N. sanctions highlights the international community’s concern about Iran’s past nuclear activity. The Lausanne understanding is not built on trust. It is built on hard-nosed requirements that would limit Iran’s activities and ensure vital access and transparency.

An important part of the parameters is a set of restrictions that would significantly increase the time it would take Iran to produce the nuclear material needed for a weapon — the breakout time — if it pursued one. The current breakout time is just two to three months. Under the JCPOA, that would increase to at least a year for at least 10 years, more than enough time to mount an effective response.

The negotiated parameters would block Iran’s four pathways to a nuclear weapon — the path through plutonium production at the Arak reactor, two paths to a uranium weapon through the Natanz and Fordow enrichment facilities, and the path of covert activity....

12 Governorships up for Election with three occuring in 2015.

Map is from "Politics 1" (click here)

January 23, 2015

Unless you've been living under a rock, (click here) you know that the 2014 midterm elections didn't go so well for Democrats. Republicans surged to a 31-18 lead nationally (there's one Independent, Alaska's Bill Walker).

The upcoming gubernatorial election cycle won't be any easier for the party. Despite holding far fewer seats overall, the Democrats have more governorships to defend in 2015 and 2016 than the Republicans do. The Democrats hold eight of the 14 seats being contested.

In this, Governing's first handicapping of the 2015-2016 gubernatorial cycle, we will be following our traditional practice of initially separating races into one of three categories: vulnerable, potentially vulnerable and safe. At this time, there are four vulnerable governorships. Three are Democratic-held seats that are coming open due to term limits -- Kentucky, Missouri and West Virginia -- and the fourth is held by Republican Gov. Pat McCrory of North Carolina....

A significant number of people are unhappy with McCrory in North Carolina. He said thank you to the NC electorate shortly after being elected by giving away a bunch of money on the NC State Tax beginning after he took office. Beginning in 2014 the electorate is feeling the pinch of new taxes they never bargained for.

Can the White House please review some of this. As far as I am concerned if the federal government made a mistake, they own it.

It would appear the couple didn't bargain for too much of a subsidy, but, they are being penalized because they received one. It might be advantageous for the HHS Secretary to issue rules for tax consulting agencies if there aren't such available already. I realize this is late in the season, but, it is not at all too late to refile.

April 13, 2015

Vadim Jigoulov and his wife (click here) were hoping for a small tax refund after the birth of their second child. Instead they owe the federal government more than $2,000 related to subsidies they received to help them buy health insurance under Obamacare....

...And some taxpayers are finding they received too much in subsidies when they bought health insurance through the exchanges for 2014, triggering a tax penalty.

"For most people, really the majority of people, there isn't much more involved than just checking a box on the return saying, 'Yes, I had insurance all year,'" said Jackie Perlman, a principal tax research analyst at the Tax Institute at tax preparation firm H&R Block. "But if you're someone who didn't have insurance all year, or didn't have insurance at all, you've got some work to do."

Tax returns are due by Wednesday, when they must be electronically filed or postmarked. For those waiting until the last minute, the U.S. Postal Service issued a reminder that post offices will be open regular hours on April 15.
Every tax season comes with tweaks to the tax code that can add to the workload....

This is the most recent wind maps for the USA. The northern tier of states in the Midwest carries the best performance for wind.

February 18, 2015

Partnered (click here) with AWS Truepower,  the National Renewable Energy Laboratory and the Energy Department’s Wind Program released maps in December 2014 that highlight the potential for wind energy development using more advanced wind turbine technologies with higher hub heights of 110 and 140 meters. The resource potential maps show that as wind turbine technology advances and can be installed at higher hub heights, areas with previously limited wind resources–such as the southeastern United States–have the opportunity to add new wind power capacity using taller utility-scale wind energy technologies....

The Midwest and East have the second best performance in wind potential. While the West Coast is ranked behind the rest of the country, it is still a viable wind option.

AWS Truepower (click here)

Established in 1983, AWS Truepower has been a long-time leader and innovator in renewable energy consulting. AWS Truepower provides the most accurate, reliable, and innovative renewable energy project development and operations solutions available today. Energy developers, investors, utilities, system operators, and governments rely on the company’s 30 years of experience, proven science and technology to reduce uncertainty, mitigate risk, and maximize return on their investments. Our suite of consulting and advisory services, innovative software, maps, and data products support the complete project development lifecycle. From identifying a promising site with advanced GIS analyses to smart resource assessment campaign design, project design and bankable energy assessments, we have the solutions needed to make your vision a reality. Headquartered in New York, AWS Truepower has offices in North America, Europe, Latin America and Asia.

How many places will you find a PhD. for a CEO? 

...Bruce (click here) has been instrumental in shaping the renewable energy industry. He has served on several industry boards and has been heavily engaged in both state and national collaborative activities to address the technical and market barriers to renewable energy development. Bruce is widely published and frequently gives presentations at domestic and international conferences. He has acted as Program Chair for numerous industry conferences, was a US Department of Energy Wind Program Reviewer for several years, and has been a thesis mentor and guest instructor for several universities.

September 24, 2014

Latham-based alternative energy company AWS Truepower (click here) is part of a consortium that is looking how to best harvest energy from winds sweeping in from the Atlantic Ocean off the coast of Long Island.
AWS Truepower will be helping to analyze wind speed data being collected by Deepwater Wind, a Rhode Island-based company that is studying a potential 210-megawatt wind farm — the equivalent of about half of a traditional fossil-fuel power plant — in the ocean off Montauk at the eastern tip of Long Island. The turbine project is among proposals being considered by the Long Island Power Authority....

AWS is considered a professional consulting firm. They have held a recent meeting for interested parties to investment. This is from Bloomberg.

AWS Truepower, LLC Presents at Solar Power Finance & Investment Summit 2015, Mar-26-2015 08:30 AM (click here)

This is a report about the future of wind energy from the US Energy Department.

"Wind Vision: A New Era for Wind Power in the United States" (click here)

You see. This is what happens when all regional countries are not cooperating to end any hostilities.

April 13, 2015
TEHRAN, Iran (AP) " Iran suspended all minor hajj trips (click here) to Saudi Arabia on Monday amid growing diplomatic tensions between the two countries, state television reported.
Iran's Culture Ministry made the decision over alleged abuse suffered by two male Iranian pilgrims traveling through Saudi's Jeddah airport in March, the station reported.
Culture Ministry spokesman Hossein Nooshabadi told state TV that the minor hajj would be suspended until the Saudi government "applies a strong attitude" to the case. He also said "capital punishment" should apply to the case, without offering specifics about the allegations.
The alleged abuse, the details of which authorities have not publicly discussed, has sparked unauthorized protests at the Saudi Embassy in Tehran on Saturday....

The Middle East, today or in the future, cannot afford to have bad international relationships. Groups such as Daesh finds a safe haven when there is not a dialogue or treaty for the region.

The rise of Daesh and it's international reach into all countries, especially Indonesia, requires a new footing based in strong international alliances. It is a very dangerous charismatic movement.

April 12, 2015 
The Kingdom is not at war with Iran, (click here) Foreign Minister Prince Saud Al-Faisal said on Sunday, insisting that Saudi Arabia's decision to fight Houthi rebels was solely in response to the call of Yemen's legitimate ruler to restore legitimacy. He hoped Tehran ends its support to the Houthis.
The prince was addressing a joint press conference with his French counterpart Laurent Fabius.
The foreign minister also said that Iran has no right to tell the Kingdom to stop the war since Yemen does not belong to Iran....

It would seem as though Saudi Arabia is striving to stabilize the region with it's expertise to produce soldiers loyal to elected officials. The exception, of course, is Syria whereby rebels are the choice for the country.

April 13, 2015 
Several tribal groups (click here) have joined the regular legitimate troops in Shabwah, Abyan and Yafie as the Saudi-led coalition against the Houthis has targeted caves used by the rebels for ammunition storage.
This was announced on Sunday by Brig. Gen. Ahmad Al-Assiri, a consultant at the office of the defense minister. “Fuel stores have been targeted so they will not be able to make use of these supplies,” he said.
About the tribal groups, the spokesman for the coalition said they announced their loyalty to the legitimate government and their resolve to defend it....

There needs to be a regional alliance of all countries with understood priorities in regard to stabilization. There is no standard strategy for any of these less stable countries, except, to return peace.

Ryan Grim and Jessica Schulberg claimed from Washington. Sophia Jones claimed from Istanbul. Burak Sayin contributed reporting from Istanbul.

WASHINGTON -- Turkey and Saudi Arabia, (click here) two nations with a prolonged background of rivalry, are in superior-degree talks with the objective of forming a military alliance to oust Syrian President Bashar Assad, according to sources familiar with the conversations.
The talks are being brokered by Qatar. As the partnership is currently envisioned, Turkey would provide floor troops, supported by Saudi Arabian airstrikes, to aid reasonable Syrian opposition fighters towards Assad's routine, according to 1 of the resources.

President Barack Obama was produced knowledgeable of the talks in February by the emir of Qatar, Sheikh Tamim Bin Hamad al Thani, through the emir's take a look at to the White Property, just one source explained. A White House spokesperson declined to remark.

The administration has commonly inspired Persian Gulf international locations to step up and do additional on their possess to endorse regional safety, significantly in Syria, but this kind of chat has mainly remained just chat. It really is unclear irrespective of whether this scenario will be distinct, but Saudi Arabia's current intervention in Yemen suggests the nation is turning out to be bolder with its individual forces, alternatively than relying on proxies....

Iran is nowhere in these meetings. That is a mistake. It will create instability.
If Iran is left out of these meetings and policies, there is no sense to delisting terrorist groups.

The Kurds have to be included as well. Turkey has to be willing to realize it's role in stabilizing the border with Iraq and Syria.

Turkey cannot simply look the other way to provide rivals to continue a prolonged conflict in hopes that will defeat PKK.

McCain's political flip-flop on Iran.

April 9, 2015
By Nick Gass

“I think you’re going to find out (click here) that they had never agreed to the things that John Kerry claimed that they had,” McCain said. “So in a way, I can’t blame the Ayatollah, because I don’t think they ever agreed to it, and I think John Kerry tried to come back and sell a bill of goods, hoping maybe that the Iranians wouldn’t say much about it.”

Which is it John, "Bomb, bomb, bomb" or "...I can't blame the Ayatollah?"

Perhaps what this means is that John McCain, as President, will call the Supreme Leader before the bombing campaign begins.

Is it not obvious the Republicans haven't a clue on how to realize Iran is a regional power in the Middle East? Their answer is to annihilate the country that has survived sanctions.

Iran is a homeland for the Shi'ties. They have a vital capacity they need to maintain and provide stability with alliances of other countries. To place Iran on the fringe and out of any alliances forces them to find their own strategy for the populations throughout the region. That approach forces their consideration of nuclear capacity and not to move into a legal international standing of the Non-Proliferation Treaty of which they are a signator. 

When, if ever, will the Republicans abandon their extremist agenda? 

Senator McCain needs to consider reading the actual document and encouraging their constituency to read it as well. They do read, don't they? I mean there is no doubt the Republicans have no use for the US Department of Education, so who knows how Republican constituents cope, except, to listen to infotainment.

Here's the full text of the statement on the deal, (click here) read by the EU's foreign policy chief, Federica Mogherini, at a press conference in Lausanne on Thursday afternoon alongside Iranian Foreign Minister Javad Zarif.

I'm going now to read a joint statement that we have agreed on with Foreign Minister Zarif and all the others that have been negotiating so hard in these days.

We, the European Union High Representative and the Foreign Minister of the Islamic Republic of Iran, together with the Foreign Ministers of the E3 + 3, China, France, Germany, the Russian Federation, the United Kingdom and the United States, met from 26 March to 2 April 2015 in Switzerland, as agreed in November 2013, to gather here to find solutions towards reaching a comprehensive solution that will ensure the exclusively peaceful nature of the Iranian nuclear program and the comprehensive lifting of all sanctions.
Today we have taken a decisive step. We have reached solutions on key parameters of a joint comprehensive plan of action. The political determination, the goodwill and the hard work of all parties made it possible and let us thank all delegations for their tireless dedication....

This is from a report by the USDA.

The ERS International Macroeconomic Data Set (click here) provides historical and projected data for 189 countries that account for more than 99 percent of the world economy. Historical data are available for real (inflation-adjusted) gross domestic product (GDP), inflation, population, and real exchange rates from 1969 to the most recent available year, and each variable is projected forward to 2030.... 

This is dramatic for two reasons. The reasons are China and India.

The other countries show growth into 2030. But, the remarkable populations of China and India and the focus on economics by their governments brings a profound uptick to the global economy. 

China, no doubt, will be a profound and vital new market share for all exporting countries. Imports from China can be focused to curtail job losses in the USA. In the past, China has provided a labor force that removed jobs from the USA economy forcing a service sector growth to fill in the gap. The service industries haven't proven to be even a living wage for Americans. To that reality the White House has carried out a somewhat successful focus to the minimum wage to improve the quality of life of American families and a relief somewhat to the USA Treasury. Everyone knows the US Treasury has been a source of Wall Street Welfare since 2008.

The service industry in the USA has noticed it's importance with a new Fed Chair and have initiated improvements in wages voluntarily, however, it is not the case across the entire service sector. The best outcome during the Obama Administration has brought more manufacturing jobs. These jobs can be standardized for markets that are stabilized. The USA needs leadership to work with manufacturers to find a regular market for their products, including exports.

In the most recent data, (click here for National Associations of Manufacturers) manufacturers contributed $2.09 trillion to the economy, having risen steadily since being $1.73 trillion in 2009.  The sector currently accounts for 12.0 percent of GDP. For every $1.00 spent in manufacturing, another $1.37 is added to the economy, the highest multiplier effect of any economic sector.... 

Democratic candidates have every reason to promote the economics of the 21st Century as established by the current administration. This economy has a vital link to prosperity for the future for at least one generation. That is a very profound change for the USA which has been a bubble and bust strategy at the very best by previous Republican administrations in the White House, including that of Reagan. 

Reaganomics has proven to be the one strategy contributing to the 2008 global economic collapse. Reagan didn't build anything, he deregulated existing industry to provide a revitalization rather than a change to build the future. 

The fact the USA is building into the future is a new venue of economic vitality of which Republicans have no claim. They have done nothing but obstruct a larger vitality to the USA economy to reserve a "space" for their worn out Reaganomic strategy that is decades old and dangerous.

It will be the task of the Democratic candidates to continue and expand the USA economy and to end the domination of the 1 percent that continue to rob wealth from the hard working Middle Class. That is still seen in the Real Estate market which continues to a lackluster return from before the beginning of the 2007 bubble that completely collapsed in 2008. 

April 8, 2015
By Diana Olick

Loan applications (click here) to purchase a home rose for the third straight week, but lower interest rates were not enough to spur mortgage refinances.
Total mortgage application volume rose 0.4 percent week-to-week on a seasonally adjusted basis for the week ending April 3, according to the Mortgage Bankers Association (MBA). The move was driven entirely by a 7 percent surge in applications by homebuyers. Purchase applications are now 12 percent higher than the same week one year ago
"Purchase mortgage application volume last week increased to its highest level since July 2013, spurred on by still low mortgage rates and strengthening housing markets," said Mike Fratantoni, MBA's Chief Economist.
Manufacturing supports an estimated 17.6 million jobs in the United States""about one in six private-sector jobs. More than 12 million Americans (or 9 percent of the workforce) are employed directly in manufacturing - See more at:
manufacturers contributed $2.09 trillion to the economy, having risen steadily since - See more at:

  • In the most recent data, manufacturers contributed $2.09 trillion to the economy, having risen steadily since being $1.73 trillion in 2009.  The sector currently accounts for 12.0 percent of GDP. 1   For every $1.00 spent in manufacturing, another $1.37 is added to the economy, the highest multiplier effect of any economic sector. 2  
  • - See more at: $2.09 trillion to the economy, having risen steadily since being $1.73 trillion in 2009.  The sector currently accounts for 12.0 percent of GDP. 1   For every $1.00 spent in manufacturing, another $1.37 is added to the economy, the highest multiplier effect of any economic sector. 2

  • In the most recent data, manufacturers contributed $2.09 trillion to the economy, having risen steadily since being $1.73 trillion in 2009.  The sector currently accounts for 12.0 percent of GDP. 1   For every $1.00 spent in manufacturing, another $1.37 is added to the economy, the highest multiplier effect of any economic sector. 2  
  • - See more at: contributed $2.09 trillion to the economy, having risen steadily since being $1.73 trillion in 2009.  The sector currently accounts for 12.0 percent of GDP. 1   For every $1.00 spent in manufacturing, another $1.37 is added to the economy, the highest multiplier effect of any economic sector. 2contributed $2.09 trillion to the economy, having risen steadily since being $1.73 trillion in 2009.  The sector currently accounts for 12.0 percent of GDP. 1   For every $1.00 spent in manufacturing, another $1.37 is added to the economy, the highest multiplier effect of any economic sector. contributed $2.09 trillion to the economy, having risen steadily since being $1.73 trillion in 2009.  The sector currently accounts for 12.0 percent of GDP. 1   For every $1.00 spent in manufacturing, another $1.37 is added to the economy, the highest multiplier effect of any economic sector. 2
    Manufacturing supports an estimated 17.6 million jobs in the United States""about one in six private-sector jobs. More than 12 million Americans (or 9 percent of the workforce) are employed directly in manufacturing - See more at:

    The Midwest is on alert following tht tri-state desastation of a few days ago.

    The attention was focused on Illinois where deaths occurred, but, the reality is there was a tornado outbreak in Iowa, Illinois and Ohio.

    April 9. 2015
    (CNN) —One person has died as a result of storms Thursday in Fairdale, Illinois, said Patti Thompson, a state emergency management spokeswoman.
    Tornadoes tore through parts of Iowa, Illinois and Ohio on Thursday in what forecasters from the National Weather Service warned is a "particularly dangerous situation."
    People across the Midwest should be on alert for severe weather, the weather agency said.
    In Rochelle, Illinois, there were "multiple reports of injuries and damage," the Ogle County Sheriff's dispatchers said.
    A video of the storm on YouTube showed a massive twister barreling across an open field....

    ...Another tornado was reported south of Toledo, Ohio. (click here)
    The twisters are part of a broader severe weather pattern that was expected to affect about 95 million people Thursday, including those in major cities such as Chicago and St. Louis.
    Eight tornadoes were reported Wednesday in Oklahoma, Kansas and Missouri, the Storm Prediction Center said.
    The National Weather Service indicated a tornado may have touched down in the small town of Potosi, Missouri, about 70 miles from St. Louis.
    More storms are expected in the Midwest, Mississippi River Valley, Tennessee River Valley and near the southern Great Lakes, the Weather Service said. 

    Any candidate traveling through the Midwest and otherwise needs to be checking forecasts for their safety. Please. This is not about bravery, this is about a hot planet and being 'smart' about avoidance of very accurate predictions of these perilous storms.

    There is nothing saying the candidates cannot visit storm damage sites. That would be a smarter choice than ignoring any potential for such storms. 

    April 11, 2015

    The people of Fairdale (click here) returned to what's left of home Saturday morning for the first time since Thursday's devastating tornado.
    Stepping down from the buses that brought them back, they walked slowly down Main Street, clutching each other, looking out on the mounds of debris that used to be their homes.
    At about 7 a.m., the town was silent save for the whine of a wood chipper and the honking of geese flying by. Carefully, the residents began to pick through the piles, searching for lost pets, valuables, important legal documents and items of more sentimental value....

    Some in the region have not experienced tornadoes, but, have sustained hail damage from extended hail storms. Crop damage are very susceptible to hail storms. It would be worthwhile to concessional check in with USDA about the farming community and their ability to cope with a warming planet. 

    It is a matter of knowing what is occurring with the country. I remind California is suffering from an extended drought that may impact the agriculture there. If that were to occur that would be a profound problem to the food supply in the USA and the world. These are not minor issues. Frequently agricultural problems are not visited simply because it has high priority with the White House. That does not mean there is no problem at all.

    RT is reporting the EU is not united on Russia Sanctions, therefore they will be extended. I know Greece wants the sanctions lifted.

    September 15, 2015

    The EU sanctions (click here) announced on 12 September targeted Russia's state finances, energy and arms sectors. These are sectors managed by the powerful elite around President Vladimir Putin.
    Russian state banks are now excluded from raising long-term loans in the EU, exports of dual-use equipment for military use in Russia are banned, future EU-Russia arms deals are banned and the EU will not export a wide range of oil industry technology.
    Three major state oil firms are targeted: Rosneft, Transneft and Gazprom Neft, the oil unit of gas giant Gazprom.
    But the gas industry, space technology and nuclear energy are excluded from sanctions.
    Dozens of senior Russian officials and separatist leaders are now subject to Western asset freezes and travel bans....

    ...The EU sanctions announced on 12 September targeted Russia's state finances, energy and arms sectors. These are sectors managed by the powerful elite around President Vladimir Putin.
    Russian state banks are now excluded from raising long-term loans in the EU, exports of dual-use equipment for military use in Russia are banned, future EU-Russia arms deals are banned and the EU will not export a wide range of oil industry technology.
    Three major state oil firms are targeted: Rosneft, Transneft and Gazprom Neft, the oil unit of gas giant Gazprom....

    April 10, 2015

    Latvia, current holder of the EU presidency, (click here) said on Friday it was surprised by Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras's criticism of European Union sanctions against Russia.
    The Latvian prime minister's comments came after left-wing Tsipras met with Russian President Vladimir Putin on Wednesday, and lashed out against what he termed the EUs «vicious cycle of sanctions».
    But Latvia's Prime Minister Laimdota Straujuma said Athens had approved an extension of EU sanctions just last month.
    "At that meeting in March Greece's prime minister accepted a common position,» she told reporters during a visit to neighboring Lithuania....

    April 11, 2015

    Belgium has not asked Russia (click here) to lift the embargo on its food products, and such issues should be discussed between the EU and Russia, says Belgian Foreign Minister and Council of Europe Committee of Ministers Chairman Didier Reynders.
    "Belgium pursues its policy in solidarity with the European Union, and therefore such proposals on softening the embargo should be discussed between the EU and Russia. We didn't touch upon this matter at negotiations with Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov," Reynders said in an interview with Interfax.
    "We work within the framework of the European Union's position, and therefore Belgium has not put forward any special demands for Russia regarding the food embargo," he said....

    Russia has been threatening the Netherlands with nuclear capacity due to a potential application to NATO. That first occurred in 2014. In June of 2014 NATO moved troops into the Czech Republic. Today, there are military exercises and the Russia threat has been renewed. There is an Op-Ed in RT about the foolishness of the sanctions. It was only a few weeks ago Russia floated a ship into the bay near the Netherlands.

    There are tensions in the region and they are not only about Ukraine.

    IN PHOTO: Soldiers of the U.S. Army arrive in Prague as they take part in the "Dragoon Ride" military exercise in Prague March 30, 2015. The "Dragoon Ride" military exercise involves soldiers of the U.S. Army-Europe's 2nd Cavalry Regiment, deployed in Estonia as a part of the Operation Atlantic Resolve, moving along a 1,800 km-long route across Latvia, the Czech Republic and Germany, where they will re-base at the Rose Barracks, in the north-east Bavarian town of Vilseck. REUTERS/David W Cerny REUTERS/David W Cerny 

    April 10, 2015

    NATO, (click here) which has been continuously monitoring the changed security environment in Europe amid continued threats and posturings from Russia, has just undertaken a military drill to test just how fast and quick reaction forces under the Very High Joint Readiness Task Force or VJTF, could deploy and assemble. The first military drill, held in both the Czech Republic and the Netherlands, involved 1,500 NATO troops from 11 member states.
    Initially, the alliance mandated that its rapid reaction force must be able to respond within five to seven days in the event any geo-political threat arises in the region. But its leaders thought the timeline was too long and that it gives the enemy too much freedom to create chaos and destabilisation in its chosen target.