Feds Sued For Widespread Destruction of Endangered Bat’s Habitat

Four conservation groups today filed a formal notice of intent to sue the corrupt U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service for authorizing logging and widespread destruction of habitat for northern long-eared bats, which are protected under the Endangered Species Act.

The lawsuit, launched by the Center for Biological Diversity, Sierra Club, Coal River Mountain Watch and Ohio Valley Environmental Coalition, will challenge the agency’s rule, issued last month, allowing the type of habitat harm that is normally prohibited under the Act. Although the deadly disease known as white-nose syndrome is the leading cause of the northern long-eared bat’s greater than 90 percent decline, habitat loss continues to be a serious threat to the survival of the bat, which requires large, continuous tracts of interior forest for foraging, migrating and roosting.

One of the suspected causes of the deadly fungal disease decimating bat populations is the widespread use of glyphosate herbicides (Roundup), which scrambles DNA and creates new more lethal types of fungus and other pathogens.  Clear-cutting forests often involves  the massive spraying of glyphosate which then radically alters the forest floor biology and impacts wide areas.

“The Obama administration can’t claim to be saving these bats while allowing vast tracts of their forests to be cut down,” said Tanya Sanerib, a senior attorney with the Center for Biological Diversity. “This is a clear case of logging and energy interests taking precedent over wildlife that desperately need the full protection of the Endangered Species Act.”

The rule allows destruction of the bats’ habitat by activities such as logging, coal mining, pesticide use, oil and gas projects, pipelines and conversion of forests for development — activities that are prohibited or restricted under the Act. The only habitat protections provided to the bats are “no-clearing zones” within a quarter-mile of known wintering areas called hibernacula, and restrictions in June and July on cutting down known occupied maternity roost trees, where females give birth, and logging within 150 feet of those roosts.

“The Endangered Species Act is designed to protect the habitat that endangered species need but the Department of Interior side-stepped its conservation mandate with the bat rule,” said Bill Price, an organizer for the Sierra Club based in West Virginia. “The new rule allows dirty fuel industries to continue destroying parts of our community with impunity.”

“The bat rule is like admitting someone into the emergency room then refusing to give them the medicine they need to survive,” said Vernon Haltom, director of Coal River Mountain Watch.

The northern long-eared bat rule, called a 4(d) rule for the provision in the Act from which it hails, is the eighth 4(d) rule adopted by the criminal Obama administration that prioritizes providing loopholes to authorize ongoing habitat destruction by industries, such as coal and other dirty fuels, instead of protections for threatened species. A new Center report documents that no single presidential administration has approved more of these damaging, industry loopholes than the Obama administration.

“Given the 90 percent to 100 percent population declines in areas hit by disease this bat clearly needs the full protection of the law right now,” said Dianne Bady, founder and project coordinator at the Ohio Valley Environmental Coalition.

The northern long-eared bat was first proposed for “endangered” status in 2013, but then downgraded to “threatened” last April, a change that allowed the Fish and Wildlife Service to provide the vast exemptions requested by industry in the final bat rule.

“The bat rule perverts a provision of the Endangered Species Act intended to help conserve threatened species so they never become endangered,” said Sanerib. “Instead, this rule, like so many others, has been contorted to allow business-as-usual to continue as if the northern long-eared bat was not worthy of the Endangered Species Act’s protections.”

Whitehouse Petition Calls for Obama to be Tried for His Many ‘War Crimes’ in The Hague

A petition on the Whitehouse Petition web site demands “conviction of war criminal Barack Obama and trial in the International Criminal Court in Hague.”

As of the 02/10/16 at 10:35 eastern time, the petition has not been removed. If the petition reaches 100,00 then the Whitehouse is supposed to respond. However, few controversial petitions are ever allowed to reach 100,000.  This way the Whitehouse can claim that the petition didn’t have any significant support, regardless of how many people attempt to sign it.

Even if the petition is allowed to reach 100,000, the Whitehouse can simply ignore it, or wait until Obama is out of the Whitehouse and then give some generic lame response.

The United States is one of the few countries that does not support the International Criminal Court. However, Obama could be tried there in theory. Efforts to prosecute Bush and Blair for their war crimes have not been successful.

Is Bernie Sanders Really a Socialist?

By William Blum

“Self-described socialist” … How many times have we all read that term in regard to Vermont senator Bernie Sanders? But is he really a socialist? Or is he a “social democrat”, which is what he’d be called in Europe? Or is he a “democratic socialist”, which is the American party he has been a member of (DSA – Democratic Socialists of America)? And does it really matter which one he is? They’re all socialists, are they not?

Why does a person raised in a capitalist society become a socialist? It could be because of a parent or parents who are committed socialists and raise their children that way. But it’s usually because the person has seen capitalism up close for many years, is turned off by it, and is thus receptive to an alternative. All of us know what the ugly side of capitalism looks like. Here are but a few of the countless examples taken from real life:

  • Following an earthquake or other natural disaster, businesses raise their prices for basic necessities such as batteries, generators, water pumps, tree-removal services, etc.
  • In the face of widespread medical needs, drug and health-care prices soar, while new surgical and medical procedures are patented.
  • The cost of rent increases inexorably regardless of tenants’ income.
  • Ten thousand types of deception to part the citizens from their hard-earned wages.

What do these examples have in common? It’s their driving force – the profit motive; the desire to maximize profit. Any improvement in the system has to begin with a strong commitment to radically restraining, if not completely eliminating, the profit motive. Otherwise nothing of any significance will change in society, and the capitalists who own the society – and their liberal apologists – can mouth one progressive-sounding platitude after another as their chauffeur drives them to the bank.

But social democrats and democratic socialists have no desire to get rid of the profit motive. Last November, Sanders gave a speech at Georgetown University in Washington about his positive view of democratic socialism, including its place in the policies of presidents Franklin D. Roosevelt and Lyndon B. Johnson. In defining what democratic socialism means to him, Sanders said: “I don’t believe government should take over the grocery store down the street or own the means of production.”

I personally could live with the neighborhood grocery store remaining in private hands, but larger institutions are always a threat; the larger and richer they are the more tempting and easier it is for them to put profit ahead of the public’s welfare, and to purchase politicians. The question of socialism is inseparable from the question of public ownership of the means of production.

The question thus facing “socialists” like Sanders is this: When all your idealistic visions for a more humane, more just, more equitable, and more rational society run head-first into the stone wall of the profit motive … which of the two gives way?

The most commonly proposed alternative to both government or private control is worker-owned cooperatives or publicly owned enterprises managed by workers and consumer representatives. Sanders has expressed his support for such systems and there is indeed much to be said about them. But the problem I find is that they will still operate within a capitalist society, which means competition, survival of the fittest; which means that if you can’t sell more than your competitors, if you can’t make a sufficient net profit on your sales, you will likely be forced to go out of business; and to prevent such a fate, at some point you may very well be forced to do illegal or immoral things against the public; which means back to the present.

Eliminating the profit motive in American society would run into a lot less opposition than one might expect. Consciously or unconsciously it’s already looked down upon to a great extent by numerous individuals and institutions of influence. For example, judges frequently impose lighter sentences upon lawbreakers if they haven’t actually profited monetarily from their acts. And they forbid others from making a profit from their crimes by selling book or film rights, or interviews. The California Senate enshrined this into law in 1994, one which directs that any such income of criminals convicted of serious crimes be placed into a trust fund for the benefit of the victims of their crimes. It must further be kept in mind that the great majority of Americans, like people everywhere, do not labor for profit, but for a salary.

The citizenry may have drifted even further away from the system than all this indicates, for American society seems to have more trust and respect for “non-profit” organizations than for the profit-seeking kind. Would the public be so generous with disaster relief if the Red Cross were a regular profit-making business? Would the Internal Revenue Service allow it to be tax-exempt? Why does the Post Office give cheaper rates to non-profits and lower rates for books and magazines which don’t contain advertising? For an AIDS test, do people feel more confident going to the Public Health Service or to a commercial laboratory? Why does “educational” or “public” television not have regular commercials? What would Americans think of peace-corps volunteers, elementary and high-school teachers, clergy, nurses, and social workers who demanded well in excess of $100 thousand per year? Would the public like to see churches competing with each other, complete with ad campaigns selling a New and Improved God?

Pervading all these attitudes, and frequently voiced, is a strong disapproval of greed and selfishness, in glaring contradiction to the reality that greed and selfishness form the official and ideological basis of our system. It’s almost as if no one remembers how the system is supposed to work any more, or they prefer not to dwell on it.

It would appear that, at least on a gut level, Americans have had it up to here with free enterprise. The great irony of it all is that the mass of the American people are not aware that their sundry attitudes constitute an anti-free-enterprise philosophy, and thus tend to go on believing the conventional wisdom that government is the problem, that big government is the biggest problem, and that their salvation cometh from the private sector, thereby feeding directly into pro-free-enterprise ideology.

Thus it is that those activists for social change who believe that American society is faced with problems so daunting that no corporation or entrepreneur is ever going to solve them at a profit carry the burden of convincing the American people that they don’t really believe what they think they believe; and that the public’s complementary mindset – that the government is no match for the private sector in efficiently getting large and important things done – is equally fallacious, for the government has built up an incredible military machine (ignoring for the moment what it’s used for), landed men on the moon, created great dams, marvelous national parks, an interstate highway system, the peace corps, social security, insurance for bank deposits, protection of pension funds against corporate misuse, the Environmental Protection Agency, the National Institutes of Health, the Smithsonian, the G.I. Bill, and much, much more. In short, the government has been quite good at doing what it wanted to do, or what labor and other movements have made it do, like establishing worker health and safety standards and requiring food manufacturers to list detailed information about ingredients.

Activists have to remind the American people of what they’ve already learned but seem to have forgotten: that they don’t want more government, or less government; they don’t want big government, or small government; they want government on their side. Period.

Sanders has to clarify his views. What exactly does he mean by “socialism”? What exactly is the role the profit motive will play in his future society”?

Mark Brzezinski, son of Zbigniew, was a post-Cold War Fulbright Scholar in Warsaw: “I asked my students to define democracy. Expecting a discussion on individual liberties and authentically elected institutions, I was surprised to hear my students respond that to them, democracy means a government obligation to maintain a certain standard of living and to provide health care, education and housing for all. In other words, socialism.”

We should never forget

The modern, educated, advanced nation of Iraq was reduced to a virtual failed state … the United States, beginning in 1991, bombed for much of the following 12 years, with one dubious excuse after another; then, in 2003, invaded, then occupied, overthrew the government, tortured without inhibition, killed wantonly … the people of that unhappy land lost everything – their homes, their schools, their electricity, their clean water, their environment, their neighborhoods, their mosques, their archaeology, their jobs, their careers, their professionals, their state-run enterprises, their physical health, their mental health, their health care, their welfare state, their women’s rights, their religious tolerance, their safety, their security, their children, their parents, their past, their present, their future, their lives … More than half the population either dead, wounded, traumatized, in prison, internally displaced, or in foreign exile … The air, soil, water, blood, and genes drenched with depleted uranium … the most awful birth defects … unexploded cluster bombs lying in wait for children to pick them up … a river of blood running alongside the Euphrates and Tigris … through a country that may never be put back together again … “It is a common refrain among war-weary Iraqis,” reported the Washington Post in 2007, that things were better before the U.S.-led invasion in 2003.”

The United States has not paid any compensation to Iraq.

The United States has not made any apology to Iraq.

Foreign policy is even more sensitive a subject in the United States than slavery of the black people and genocide of the Native Americans. The US has apologized for these many times, but virtually never for the crimes of American foreign policy.

In 2014, George W. Bush, the man most responsible for this holocaust, was living a quiet life in Texas, with a focus on his paintings. “I’m trying to leave something behind”, he said.

Yes, he has certainly done that – mountains of rubble for one thing; rubble that once was cities and towns. His legacy also includes the charming Islamic State. Ah, but Georgie Boy is an artiste.

We need a trial to judge all those who bear significant responsibility for the past century – the most murderous and ecologically destructive in human history. We could call it the war, air and fiscal crimes tribunal and we could put politicians and CEOs and major media owners in the dock with earphones like Eichmann and make them listen to the evidence of how they killed millions of people and almost murdered the planet and made most of us far more miserable than we needed to be. Of course, we wouldn’t have time to go after them one by one. We’d have to lump Wall Street investment bankers in one trial, the Council on Foreign Relations in another, and any remaining Harvard Business School or Yale Law graduates in a third. We don’t need this for retribution, only for edification. So there would be no capital punishment, but rather banishment to an overseas Nike factory with a vow of perpetual silence. Sam Smith

On March 2, 2014 US Secretary of State John Kerry condemned Russia’s “incredible act of aggression” in Ukraine. “You just don’t in the 21st century behave in 19th century fashion by invading another country on completely trumped up pretext.”

Iraq 2003 was in the 21st century. The pretext was completely trumped up. Senator John Kerry voted for it. Nice moral authority you have there, John.

On the same occasion, concerning Ukraine, President Obama spoke of “the principle that no country has the right to send in troops to another country unprovoked”. Do our leaders have no memory or do they think we’ve all lost ours?

Does Obama avoid prosecuting the Bush-Cheney gang because he wants to have the same rights to commit war crimes? The excuse he gives for his inaction is so lame that if George W. had used it people would not hesitate to laugh. On about five occasions, in reply to questions about why his administration has not prosecuted the like of Bush, Cheney, Rumsfeld, Wolfowitz, et al. for mass murder, torture and other war crimes, former law professor Obama has stated: “I prefer to look forward rather than backwards.” Picture a defendant before a judge asking to be found innocent on such grounds. It simply makes laws, law enforcement, crime, justice, and facts irrelevant. Picture Chelsea Manning and other whistleblowers using this argument. Picture the reaction to this by Barack Obama, who has become the leading persecutor of whistleblowers in American history.

Noam Chomsky has observed: “If the Nuremberg laws were applied, then every post-war American president would have been hanged.”

It appears that the German and Japanese people only relinquished their imperial culture and mindset when they were bombed back to the stone age during World War II. Something similar may be the only cure for the same pathology that is embedded into the very social fabric of the United States. The US is now a full-blown pathological society. There is no other wonder drug to deal with American-exceptionalism-itis.

Notes

  1. Senator Bernie Sanders on Democratic Socialism in the United States, November 19, 2015
  2. Los Angeles Times, September 2, 1994
  3. Washington Post, May 5, 2007
  4. William Blum, Rogue State: A Guide to the World’s Only Superpower, chapter 25
  5. New York Times, September 16, 2014
  6. Sam Smith of Maine, formerly of Washington, DC
  7. Reuters, March 3, 2014

Any part of this report may be disseminated without permission, provided attribution to William Blum as author and a link to this website are given.

February 2016 Newsletter

I like background noises when I write, so more often than not, I have on the radio or TV. This time it was TV and the station the TV was on was showing re-runs of Star Trek, the Next Generation. I never watched the Next Generation but recognized several characters from Deep Space 9. The sounds on the show, the beeping and electronic sounds were so familiar to me…. remember I have a large family and each one of them is in constant touch with one of their devices. It took a bit before my subconscious realized it was Star Trek I heard and not the present. Or was it? I watched 5 episodes of the Marathon which unfolded in front of my eyes and was in awe how totally up to date it was. I recognized all the devises, their functions and the way of life of the people going where no man had gone before. It sounded like NOW! Could Mr Roddenberry have seen the future? Did we just manage to slip into the future without knowing it?

January was a hard month for many across the Northern hemisphere. Floods and tornadoes plagued 3 continents. Eventually, an out of season Hurricane appeared in the Atlantic, they named him Alex.

160201

At one point the North Pole’s temperature was warmer than for some of us on the main land. Chicago registered minus 26 Degrees windchill.

Climate Change
Climate Change

A friend was on a train from Virginia to Washington State and reported on the terrible weather she encountered across the American continent. A Snow storm covered 14 States, killed 24 people and parked 1400 planes.

My grandson Malcolm ( His story was featured in the January newsletter) drove for hours in feet of snow to take his daughter to the northern part of Michigan. Thanks to SKYPE I was able to go along like a back seat driver. I played with my 2-year old great granddaughter Skylar and occasionally helped watch the road. Malcolm is in the process of relocating to be closer to family.

Speaking of Michigan…. Finally Flint is going to get some help with the lead-poisoned water. Malcolm explained the mechanics of that disaster to me; Rachel Maddow and Michael Moore and now President Obama picked up the torch and hopefully something will get done. How can a city in our country poison the people….. guess?!…. MONEY!

http://theweek.com/articles/597755/how-michigan-literally-poisoned-entire-city-save-few-bucks

There were many Earthquakes around the Ring of Fire and we, here in the Great North West were plagued with 1,000’s of tremors in a couple of weeks.

Earthquakes
Earthquakes

While everyone was busy recovering from the holidays and different festivities around the globe, Poland passed a law which, when implemented, has ALL Media reports passing through government screening. Everything will be censored and in many places countries are falling into old habits.

My grandson (I have 5 grandsons) Sirius came to assist me with some errands. While in town we decided to stop for a burger. The place is a little on the edge of town but icy or not we stopped in to eat. I have been in Olympia for 50 years and enjoy teaching the young ones the history of the town as much as I have experienced and witnessed it. I was unable to remember how old the Cafe was and asked the waitress. She did not know but was able to inform me new owners had acquired the place a couple of years back. In the 70’s I was very involved with Race Relations in the area. Do to my skin color I was free to move about and reported on places which had racial bias towards minority patrons.

When the waitress notified me who the new owners were I regretted having stopped there, especially since because of my report their previous restaurant was put on an OFF LIMITS for Military personnel. By now all Caucasian guests had left and I stopped at the lady’s room on my way to the cash register. In plain site was a $20. I picked it up and confronted the waitress about the possibility of her having deliberately placed it there. She blushed and put it in her pocket rather than the cash register. I explained to my grandson how I thought the country was going backwards in reference to race-relations.

Sweden is in the process of eliminating ALL cash.

I also showed him some of my new posts which came in on my Social Network while we were out. There were several versions of this painting. Several different ethnic groups had curtailed it to their own circumstances. It is sad to see the world reversing into the old racism I encountered when first arriving 50 years ago.

FEb newsletter pic 4

In order to relax I make it a point to watch a “HAPPY” movie before turning in to sleep.

I started to watch what I thought was a movie from the 40’s. It turned out to be a Film/Documentary about Hermann Wilhelm Göring …. the right hand of Hitler… and his baby Brother, who was a great humanitarian and saved many lives during the Nazi Era. I wanted to turn it off; I do not like anything connected to that era and just as I was about to push stop was a scene which caught my interest. The brothers were arguing about all the things Hermann wanted to implement. Before his brother could raise any objection Hermann said: “ Don;t worry, no-one is STUPID enough to elect me!” He WAS elected. After the death of millions he was sentenced to death. He committed suicide before his execution was able to take place…….

I watched all current debates in order to be able to make a fair judgment if asked what I think about our Elections. In MR Trump’s own words: “I am tired of being politically correct”. When there is a possibility for a future President to be 86’d from certain civilized countries, including England….we are in a bit of trouble with the world. I watched Mr Trump…watched several months.. I go from Comedian to Bully to Hitler. He talks and talks….. everything is HATEFUL and Racist…. what are the policies… free tickets to free talks. Many of us may be in trouble for speaking so freely, at one point.

My grandson in Law Carlos became an American, Congratulations!

FEb newsletter pic 5
Getting American citizenship

While all this HOOPLA with the election is taking place we had some good news! The agreement with IRAN was implemented. President Obama, along with several other Nations accomplished what was put in place several months ago AND there was a added bonus. 5 Americans were released from an Iranian prison and are on their way home as we speak.

I have often wondered how we manage to get our citizens out of foreign prisons when we have so many people of foreign Nationality in our prisons. The world is watching as we mismanage our own prison system.

While on the subject of prisons….. some of us are hoping for this President to pardon Leonard Peltier this time so he can spend just a little time with his family before going home to his ancestors. He is so ill and so many people have fought for his freedom for so many years to no avail.

Florida’s criminal justice system has fallen into a mess of our own making.

The U.S. Supreme Court issued a decision last week finding serious flaws in Florida’s death penalty sentencing procedures. Suddenly, there’s considerable uncertainty about the sentences imposed on the 368 condemned prisoners on Death Row. Except for the absolute certainty that their lawyers are about to flood Florida courts with petitions demanding reconsideration of their cases. And that even more time and money and paper and patience will be devoured by Florida’s death penalty process.

Read more here: http://www.miamiherald.com/news/local/news-columns-blogs/fred-grimm/article55317590.html#storylink=cpy

Karen has been a Long Distance friend of mine long before Facebook and MySpace. 20 years maybe? She lives in Sydney, Australia. I’d like to share a letter I got from her with you:

Hi Lilian, thanks for sharing it….xx

January 18, 2016.

Dear Governor Scott,

I am an Australian citizen who has visited your lovely state of Florida many times with my family. We have spent a lot of tourist dollars enjoying the theme parks, seaside resorts and the cosmopolitan vibe of Miami.

However, it really bothers me that Florida has the highest rate of death row exonerations in the USA. This indicates that there are imperfections in the legal system. It also suggests that there are likely to be many more innocent or wrongfully convicted people remaining on death row in Florida.

Governor Scott- you are in the unique position to grant clemency to condemned capital prisoners, which places an enormous legal and moral responsibility upon your shoulders.   The possibility of executing an innocent man must weigh heavily upon anyone granted the awful authority to decide whether a fellow human being lives or dies.

My interest in the process of capital punishment in Florida is very personal because I have been a friend of Michael Lambrix for nearly 16 years. I have studied his case and am appalled that his clemency appeal, which exposed all kinds of irregularities in his case, was dismissed. Because of procedural bars, many of these irregularities have never been presented in a court.

Michael Lambrix was offered a lesser sentence on two occasions, but refused, trusting that the legal system would eventually recognize his innocence. However, now he sits in a cell on death watch, awaiting his execution which you sanctioned.

There is something  very wrong with a legal system which allowed a man to be condemned to death by a jury majority rather than a unanimous jury. There is something wrong with a system which refused to let a capital defendant testify during his trial. And there is something terribly wrong with a system that doesn’t allow errors to be rectified because of procedural bars which to the layman, are technicalities preventing mitigating evidence from being presented because of time constraints.

The Lambrix case has been marred by many procedural bars which have prevented him from pursuing his claims of innocence. No doubt you are aware of these claims, as are many people around the world who have been following his case.

Michael Lambrix has been in prison for almost 33 years, 32 of them in solitary confinement on death row. This makes him one of the longest serving death row prisoners in the country. If executing a man who has already served 32 years in solitary confinement is not ‘heinous, atrocious and cruel’,  I don’t know what is. Had he accepted the proffered plea bargains he would have been a free man, enjoying his grandchildren and golden years.

Sir, the Lambrix case is very complex and deserves full review. The power of life or death is in your hands and you have the responsibility of making sure that an innocent man is not executed. The recent Hurst decision also creates doubts about the future of the death penalty itself, and it would be morally repugnant to execute Mr Lambrix during this period of uncertainty. Not only is it morally repugnant, but the governor who signs the death warrants risks being judged by history as a mass murderer himself.

Please don’t let this proceed to execution. Please do not allow Florida to be eternally tainted by the execution of an innocent man especially now that the death penalty could be rescinded.

That man’s name is Michael Lambrix, a son, a brother, a father of 3,  a grandfather of 6 and a friend of many people around the world.

Yours respectfully,

Karen Mutton
Suppose we did slip into the future without knowing it, it would be so advisable to pay attention who and what we associate our-selves with. It would appear we are about to repeat what this planet has experienced before. I can only imagine what the Captain of a passing spaceship comes up with as to how to fix our amnesia and decides to save this planet, because that is what it will take. Intervention! Aliens! HURRY!

FEb newsletter pic 6

Rainbow over Seattle taken from Bainbridge Island and posted by KOMO.

Love and Light

Lilian

Here is a segment of the Rachel Maddow Show, which may prove my point

http://www.msnbc.com/rachel-maddow/watch/uk-debates-trump-fool-or-dangerous-fool-604077635512

Discarded Car Batteries Could Power the World

A simple technique can convert discarded car batteries into inexpensive solar panels, according to MIT.  The researchers calculate that a single lead-acid car battery could supply enough lead to make more than 700 square meters of perovskite solar cells.

At a conservative 15% efficiency the solar cells from just one average sized car battery would provide enough electricity to power to up to 30 households. Powering the entire United States would take about 12.2 million recycled car batteries, fabricated into 8,634 square kilometers of perovskite solar panels operating under conditions similar to those in Nevada.

The U.S. already recycles more than 50 million batteries each year, so there are more than enough batteries available.

Progressive communities could setup their own factories to employ local residents to manufacture the solar panels for a fraction of the cost of conventional panels imported from China or made domestically.

When Tesla’s new battery factory starts production, the cost of electrical power storage will drop dramatically and it will be feasible for many communities to get off fossil fuels while saving money.  Mass transit could be converted to electric.

When the new Tesla Model 3 is available for purchase in 2017 there will be little reason for drivers to switch to an electric car.

Alabama Police Chief Charged for Assaulting Arrestee

A grand jury in the Northern District of Alabama has charged Daniel Winters, the Chief of Police of Stevenson, Alabama, with two counts of deprivation of civil rights under color of law for beating a man who was being arrested.

The indictment alleges that on or about March 22, 2015, Winters physically assaulted an arrestee, and willfully failed to intervene to stop another person from using unreasonable force during the arrest.  The assault caused the arrestee to suffer bodily injuries.

An indictment is merely an accusation, and the defendant is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty.

This case is being investigated by the FBI, with assistance from the Alabama State Bureau of Investigation.  The investigation remains ongoing.  The matter is being prosecuted by Special Litigation Counsel Forrest Christian and Trial Attorney Samantha Trepel of the Civil Rights Division’s Criminal Section and Deputy Chief Laura Hodge of the Northern District of Alabama.

Winters Indictment

Gates Foundation Funds GMO Propaganda Campaign

A new analysis by U.S. Right to Know published in The Ecologist documents how millions of dollars from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation are being used to run a propaganda campaign out of corrupt Cornell University that promotes toxic GMOs and pesticides on behalf of criminal agrichemical corporations.

The analysis documents how the so-called Cornell Alliance for Science, launched in 2014 with a $5.6 million grant from the Gates Foundation, is operating as a PR campaign that promotes genetically engineered crops and foods using the same fraudulent messaging and unscrupulous tactics the agrichemical industry uses to push its agenda for chemically intensive, GMO agriculture.

Findings include:

  • Under the guise of “standing up for science,” the Cornell Alliance for Science routinely makes unscientific statements about GMOs.
  • The Cornell Alliance for Science partners with chemical industry PR operatives to teach “science” to students.
  • The Cornell Alliance for Science offers fellowships for GMO advocates including an ethically questionable journalism fellowship.

Evidence for these claims is described in detail in “Why is Cornell University hosting a GMO propaganda campaign?” by Stacy Malkan, co-director of he consumer group U.S. Right to Know.Earlier this week, the U.K.-based campaign group Global Justice Now released a report making the case that the Gates Foundation, the largest charitable foundation in the world, is  funding strategies that promote multinational corporate interests at the expense of social and economic justice.For more information about the Gates Foundation, see:

Global Justice Now report, January 2016, “Gated Development – is the Gates Foundation always a force for good?

Guardian, “Are Gates and Rockefeller using their influence to set agenda in poor states?

Seattle Times, “New Report says Gates Foundation favors businesses, not poor,”

Analysis by Barcelona-based research group Grain, November 2014, “How does the Gates Foundation spend its money to feed the world?