Archive for the ‘Current Events’ Category
by Mara Zebest
Feel Good Story of the Day: A Lansing, Michigan man with a concealed weapons permit uses his gun to shoot the “knockout game” attacker. The attacker survives two gun shot wounds and promptly landed in jail.
It was only a matter of time until a knockout attacker tangled with an armed citizen. Of course Liberals will tell you that the concept of a ”good guy with a gun stops a bad guy with a gun” is a myth (as in this promotion to get Libs to push gun-control at Thanksgiving). So if gun-control works so well, then why are there constant headlines like this one—15 shot in one typical Chicago night—out of strict gun-control Chicago?
WILX News 10 reports the following:
A game called “Point-em-out, Knock-em-out” has made it’s way to Lansing, and it’s exactly how it sounds. The game consists of someone being randomly targeted, then attacked.
It’s a game that’s been growing with popularity on the internet, with teenagers filming themselves punching unsuspecting victims. Lansing had it’s first case of the game brought to light this summer, but it’s possible it’s been happening under the radar for months.
On February 26th a man waiting for his six-year-old daughter to to dropped off from school had no idea he would be the city’s first reported victim.
“I saw the van circle twice and the second time three came out. I didn’t suspect anything. I hadn’t any enemies, or any reason to believe they would be looking to do anything to me.”
We are not revealing the victim’s identity for his protection.
The victim was attacked by 17-year-old Marvell Weaver. But Weaver did more than try to knock his victim out, he tried to do it with a taser. Luckily for the victim, the taser didn’t work and he was able to protect himself with his concealed-carry .40 caliber pistol.
“He shoved something into my side. I wasn’t sure what it was. It had some force to it. I wasn’t sure if it was a knife or a gun,” said the victim.
Weaver was shot twice, in the leg and an inch away from his spine. He’s been sentenced to a year in jail for the attack, but he admits he’s getting off easy.
“It was just a lesson learned. I wish I hadn’t played the game at all,” said Weaver.
But Weaver say’s this wasn’t the first time he’d played it. Before he was caught, he and his friends had attacked random people on several occasions. [...]
“What they tried to do to me wouldn’t have been a joke if they would’ve succeeded. My child would’ve been left with the aftermath of seeing her father in any type of way I would’ve been left,” said Weaver’s victim.
by Bob Unruh
A federal judge has ruled that the U.S. government’s “Internet kill switch,” a plan to deactivate wireless communications networks in a crisis, is not protected by secrecy laws and must be disclosed to the public.
The ruling on SOP 303 – the Department of Homeland Security’s Standard Operating Procedure – comes from U.S. District Court Judge James Boasberg in Washington.
The judge ordered the DHS to turn over SOP 303 to the Electronic Privacy Information Center, which brought the Freedom of Information Act case, within 30 days.
Boasberg ordered his actions stayed until it’s determined whether the government will appeal.
EPIC, nevertheless, declared victory on its website, explaining that it sought the documentation “to determine whether the agency’s plan could adversely impact free speech or public safety.”
The federal court explained that SOP 303 codifies “a shutdown and restoration process for use by commercial and private wireless networks during national crises.”
The government explains that such a move might become necessary under certain circumstances to “deter the triggering of radio-activated improvised explosive devices.”
When EPIC requested the information, DHS responded that it “had conducted comprehensive searches for records that would be responsive … [but was] unable to locate or identify any responsive records.”
However, as part of an appeal process, DHS admitted there was a record – “the very document EPIC had requested: Standard Operating Procedure 303.”
But DHS withheld some of the document because it contained personal information for “state homeland security officials,” claiming it would “disclose techniques and procedures for law enforcement investigations or prosecutions” and that it could “reasonably be expected to endanger the life or physical safety of any individual.”
The judge, however, discounted DHS’ arguments for preventing the release of information.
He wrote that the agency could not meet the requirement that a disclosure “would reveal ‘techniques and procedures for law enforcement investigations or prosecutions.’”
“In reaching its concluding, the court is not unaware of the potential adverse use to which this information could be put. Its ruling, furthermore, is no judgment on whether it is in the national interest for SOP 303 to be disclosed. If, in fact,the government believes release will cause significant harm, it has other options to pursue.”
He noted the government could seek relief from Congress.
EPIC explains that the “kill switch” protocol was adopted by the National Communications System but never released to the public.
“In a 2006-2007 Report, the President’s National Security Telecommunications Advisory Committee (‘NSTAC’) indicated that SOP 303 would be implemented under the coordination of the National Coordinating Center (“NCC”) of the NSTAC, while the decision to shut down service would be made by state Homeland Security Advisers or individuals at DHS. The report indicates that NCC will determine if a shutdown is necessary based on a ‘series of questions,’” the organization reported.
EPIC documented when the procedure was used after a July 3, 2011, shooting by a Bay Area Rapid Transit officer in San Francisco of a homeless man, Charles Hill.
In the aftermath, a protest “was cut short after BART officials cut off all cellular service inside four transit stations for a period of three hours. This act prevented any individual on the station platform from sending or receiving phone calls, messages, or other data,” EPIC reported.
That, the organization said, “set off a renewed interest in the government’s power to shut down access to the Internet and other communications services.”
“A 2011 Report from the White House asserted that the National Security Council and the Office of Science and Technology Policy have the legal authority to control private communications systems in the United States during times of war or other national emergencies. The Federal Communications Commission plans to implement policies governing the shutdown of communications traffic for the ‘purpose of ensuring public safety.’ Also, on July 6, 2012, the White House approved an Executive Order seeking to ensure the continuity of government communications during a national crisis. As part of the Executive Order, DHS was granted the authority to seize private facilities, when necessary, effectively shutting down or limiting civilian communications,” EPIC documented.
EPIC then wanted to know the existing procedures, what would decide whether an emergency existed and “any executing protocols.”
WND reported later when a report for the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development by the London School of Economics and the University of Oxford said a “kill switch” would actually cause more problems than it would prevent.
That report said that in most emergencies “you would want to give priority to doctors, but most doctors and their surgeries use the same downstream Internet facilities as the bulk of the population and there would be no easy way to identify them.”
“Localized Internet switch-off is likely to have significant unwanted consequences.”
Judicial Watch, a government watchdog organization, said arming the president with an Internet “kill switch” easily could be misused to silence free speech “under the pretext of a national emergency.”
There already is an organization set up to manage such emergencies, and it includes personnel from the National Security Agency, Army, Navy, Marines, Air Force and policymakers (politicians), according to a report from WND columnist Andrea Shea King.
The administration agency, dubbed CYBERCOM, is set up within the Department of Defense. It says it is both a defense and an offense in that it can engage in preemptive “strikes” intended to disrupt threats, she reported.
Read more at http://www.wnd.com/2013/11/judge-release-internet-kill-switch-plans/#BvOHdO6sfo8xm7B2.99
UnitedHealth Group dropped thousands of doctors from its networks in recent weeks, leaving many elderly patients unsure whether they need to switch plans to continue seeing their doctors, the Wall Street Journal reported on Friday.
The insurer said in October that underfunding of Medicare Advantage plans for the elderly could not be fully offset by the company’s other healthcare business. The company also reported spending more healthcare premiums on medical claims in the third quarter, due mainly to government cuts to payments for Medicare Advantage services.
The Journal report said that doctors in at least 10 states were notified of being laid off the plans, some citing “significant changes and pressures in the healthcare environment.” According to the notices, the terminations can be appealed within 30 days.
Tyler Mason, a UnitedHealth spokesperson, was not immediately available for comment when reached by Reuters.
The insurer told the WSJ that its provider networks were always changing and that it expected its Medicare Advantage network to be 85 percent to 90 percent of its current size by the end of 2014.
UnitedHealth is participating in about a dozen new state insurance markets that launched on October 1 to offer subsidized health coverage under President Barack Obama’s healthcare overhaul.
The insurer said previously it planned to withdraw from some markets in 2014 because of the government funding cuts.
Another top health insurer, Aetna Inc , also warned in October that it expected slowing growth in 2014 in its Medicare Advantage plans.
(Reporting by Zeba Siddiqui in Bangalore; Editing by Peter Cooney)
TIME TO SWITCH TO BLUE CROSS AND DROP AARP
Testimony from victims strongly suggests it was the rebels, not the Syrian government, that used Sarin nerve gas during a recent incident in the revolution-wracked nation, a senior U.N. diplomat said Monday.
Carla del Ponte, a member of the U.N. Independent International Commission of Inquiry on Syria, told Swiss TV there were “strong, concrete suspicions but not yet incontrovertible proof,” that rebels seeking to oust Syrian strongman Bashar al-Assad had used the nerve agent.
But she said her panel had not yet seen any evidence of Syrian government forces using chemical weapons, according to the BBC, but she added that more investigation was needed.
Damascus has recently facing growing Western accusations that its forces used such weapons, which President Obama has described as crossing a red line. But Ms. del Ponte’s remarks may serve to shift the focus of international concern.
Ms. del Ponte, who in 1999 was appointed to head the U.N. war crimes tribunals for Yugoslavia and Rwanda, has sometimes been a controversial figure. She was removed from her Rwanda post by the U.N. Security Council in 2003, but she continued as the chief prosecutor for the Yugoslav tribunal until 2008.
Ms. del Ponte, a former Swiss prosecutor and attorney general, told Swiss TV: “Our investigators have been in neighboring countries interviewing victims, doctors and field hospitals. According to their report of last week, which I have seen, there are strong, concrete suspicions but not yet incontrovertible proof of the use of sarin gas, from the way the victims were treated.”
She gave no further details, the BBC said.
The UN Independent International Commission of Inquiry on Syria was established in August 2011 to examine alleged violations of human rights in the Syrian conflict which started in March that year.
It is due to issue its next report to the UN Human Rights Council in Geneva in June.
Rebel Free Syrian Army spokesman Louay Almokdad denied that rebels had use chemical weapons.
“In any case, we don’t have the mechanism to launch these kinds of weapons, which would need missiles that can carry chemical warheads, and we in the FSA do not possess these kind of capabilities,” Mr. Almokdad told CNN.
“More importantly, we do not aspire to have (chemical weapons) because we view our battle with the regime as a battle for the establishment of a free democratic state. … We want to build a free democratic state that recognizes and abides by all international accords and agreements — and chemical and biological warfare is something forbidden legally and internationally.”
Read more: http://p.washingtontimes.com/news/2013/may/6/syrian-rebels-used-sarin-nerve-gas-not-assads-regi/#ixzz2dAvZQVag
Follow us: @washtimes on Twitter
There are mean people who are complaining that John Kerry U.S. Secretary of State, spent Wednesday sailing on his yacht to Nantucket Island. I think we should lighten up a bit.
First of all the guy was out of the country for 12-days trying to craft a peace between Israel and the “moderate” terrorists in Fatah. That’s gotta take a lot out of someone. Kerry loves that yacht that’s why he kept it in Rhode Island to avoid taxes until he was exposed–he doesn’t have the money..I am sure of it, because he promised he would pay the taxes anyway in 2010, but according to the Boston Herald who checked two years later he still hadn’t paid those taxes (which by that time had grown to $1,000,000). You see how much love the guy has to share? All that public embarrassment—but he had to be on that boat.
Kerry loved that boat so much that he first had the state department lie about his trip to Nantucket (that was until two many people saw him).
Now why would John Kerry have to postpone the visit with the love of his life just because one of the most important countries for American interests in the middle east was about have a revolution and overthrow the government. Besides, its not like he had advanced warning. OK the military gave Morsi 48 hours so Kerry would have known something was about to happen. But maybe he had reservations to stay at a Motel 6 or something and they wouldn’t give him his money back because it was a holiday weekend.
Some people suggested that the secretary of state interrupt his vacation and at least send a very clear signal — even by flying back to Washington for a day or two that what was happening in Egypt was important. I say hog wash. Don’t those people realize that Kerry has been Secretary of State since February 1st. That’s four whole months without a vacation. He must be bushed tired.
Come on let’s be reasonable. How many of us started a new job and then almost immediately took a vacation during a crisis? Almost all of us right? Some of us? At least 2-3 of us? World crisis be dammed, this guy earned some time off.
Those who study such things point out that Islam is not the problem; the radical element, the extremists, who make up only about 20% of the Muslims of the world, actually support terrorism. ONLY, 20% of the 1.6 Billion Muslims comes out to 320 million people who believe you must either convert to Islam or be killed. The fight to end extremism and terrorism in the Islamic world is not being conducted by our moderate friends in Islamic nations. In fact the overwhelming financial support as well as toleration of extremist training camps and radical mosques comes from our “friends” in the Muslim world.
So this 20% represents all the radicals and terrorists. Yet the Pew research polls show that in much of the Islamic world overwhelming majorities (87% Egypt, 82% Jordan, 79% Afghanistan, 77% Pakistan, 66% Palestinians) believe that one who leaves Islam should be executed, and that beating, disfiguring, and removing limbs by religious leaders is appropriate punishment for those who break either religious rules or civil law, and these are not numbered among the terrorists but are main-stream Muslims. Extremism and terrorism only exist because the majority in the Islamic world allows it to exist, they do nothing to prevent or punish this so-called “high-jacking of Islam” by extremists.
Think about how we would accept this if it were 20% of Southern Baptists who believed that those who leave their church for another religion, or because they no longer believe at all, should be executed and actually carried out the execution. How would you feel if Baptist ministers were determining when a person should be beaten or stoned for sinning, or when their hand would be chopped off for stealing? Would you argue that the government should be tolerant of their religious rights?
We are told there is a strong moderate movement in Islam. Then where is it and what is it doing about the problem? The problem is that even these moderates know that they are apostates from Islam, because they are standing against the fundamental teachings of Mohammed upon which all Islam stands. The very concepts of God-given rights to liberty, choice of religion, right to express your opinion, and virtually all our constitutional rights are a violation of Islam and are offensive to those who believe the Koran. There cannot be a faithful moderate Muslim, because to be so is to go against the very teachings of the Prophet, so is punishable by death.
We will know when there is a moderate Islam, when Christians, Hindus, Sikhs, or Buddhists can freely teach their religion in Islamic countries and Muslims can freely choose to accept those teachings without any punishment. As it now exists, and as it has from the beginning, Islam is an extreme system of tyranny. Or government should impose the same standard of religious tolerance for Islam that is granted in Islamic countries. That would mean there would currently be no Islam practiced here except for non-citizens, and then under the watchful eye of the FBI.
It will someday come to this if individual liberty is to survive in the world. Liberty cannot coexist with “accept my religion, or be a tribute-paying vassal, or I will kill you.” This is not an extremist view it is doctrine from the base teachings of Islam.