Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Cynthia McKinney Relief Boat Hit by Israeli Ship

Published on Tuesday, December 30, 2008 by the Atlanta Journal-Constitution by Craig Schneider.

boat carrying international activists, including former Georgia congresswoman Cynthia McKinney, and medical supplies to the embattled Gaza Strip sailed back into a Lebanese port on Tuesday after being turned back and damaged by the Israeli navy, organizers of the trip said.
Lebanese fishermen cheer as the vessel SS Dignity arrives at Tyre, Lebanon, on Tuesday after being turned back and damaged by the Israeli navy, according to organizers of the trip. (Mohammed Zaatari / AP)The crowds on the docks in the Lebanese port city of Tyre were jubilant and cheering as they welcomed the vessel.
The boat, which set off from Cyprus Monday wanted to make a statement and deliver medical supplies to embattled Gaza. The trip's organizers said the boat was clearly in international waters, 90 miles off the coast of Gaza, at the time of its close encounter with the Israeli navy.
"Our boat was rammed three times, twice in the front and one on the side," McKinney told CNN Tuesday morning. "Our mission was a peaceful mission. Our mission was thwarted by the aggressiveness of the Israeli military."

See rest of story at Commondreams.org

Saturday, December 27, 2008

Tennessee coal ash disaster three times larger than originally estimated

From Thinkprogress.org

Santa Rosa Protests Police Use Of Tasers

http://rawstory.com/ Is reoporting that residents of Santa Rosa are protesting another death due to police use of tasers. A naked man was tasered to death in Texas.
From the RawStory.com

Activists hold anti-Taser vigil after year of deaths
12/27/2008 @ 6:22 pmFiled by Andrew McLemore
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In Santa Rosa, Calif., residents are not happy with their local law enforcement.After two men died by police wielding Tasers in the last two months and four more in the past year, a number of Sonoma County groups rallied about 40 people to protest the electro-shock weapon."Although it might seem like a lesser evil, they have been misusing it to such a degree that it has become lethal in this county," said Maggie Coshnear, a member of the county's October 22nd Coalition.Sherry Heyberger, a 40-year-old hairdresser, stood on a curb during the rally holding a sign that read "Tasers are Torture."Nathan Vaughn, the most recent victim of Taser use, was hit three times by a Taser less than two minutes after a Sonoma County sheriff's deputy entered his home.Vaughn, 39, was assaulting his father and his mother had called police for help, but less than an hour after the deputy arrived, Vaughn was dead."He shouldn't have died the way he did," Heyberger said. "He's been in and out of jail, yeah, but does that call for someone being Tasered three times?"Tasers have grown increasingly controversial as stories like Vaughn's continue to surface across the country.In Houston, Texas, a naked man disturbing the neighborhood died after police shocked him with a Taser four times.A recent report found that 400 people in the US and Canada have died from Taser shocks since 2001. Since the report was issued, Canada has begun removing the weapon from its police forces.

Monday, December 22, 2008

'Karl Rove's IT guru' Mike Connell dies in plane crash

From The RawStory.com
UPDATE AT THIS LINK: GOP consultant killed in plane crash was warned of sabotageA top level Republican IT consultant who was set to testify in a case alleging GOP election tampering in Ohio died in a plane crash late Friday night. Michael Connell -- founder of Ohio-based New Media Communications, which created campaign Web sites for George W. Bush and John McCain -- died instantly after his single-prop, private aircraft smashed into a vacant home in suburban Lake Township, Ohio. "The plane was attempting to land around 6 p.m. Friday at Akron-Canton Airport when it crashed about three miles short of the runway," reports the Akron Beacon Journal.Connell's exploits as a top GOP IT 'guru' have been well documented by RAW STORY's investigative team. The interest in Mike Connell stems from his association with a firm called GovTech, which he had spun off from his own New Media Communications under his wife Heather Connell’s name. GovTech was hired by Ohio Secretary of State Kenneth Blackwell to set up an official election website at election.sos.state.oh.us to presented the 2004 presidential returns as they came in.Connell is a long-time GOP operative, whose New Media Communications provided web services for the Bush-Cheney ’04 campaign, the US Chamber of Commerce, the Republican National Committee and many Republican candidates. This in itself might have raised questions about his involvement in creating Ohio’s official state election website.However, the alternative media group ePlubibus Media further discovered in November 2006 that election.sos.state.oh.us was hosted on the servers of a company in Chattanooga, TN called SmarTech, which also provided hosting for a long list of Republican Internet domains.“Since early this decade, top Internet ‘gurus’ in Ohio have been coordinating web services with their GOP counterparts in Chattanooga, wiring up a major hub that in 2004, first served as a conduit for Ohio's live election night results,” researchers at ePluribus Media wrote.A few months after this revelation, when a scandal erupted surrounding the firing of US Attorneys for reasons of White House policy, other researchers found that the gwb43 domain used by members of the White House staff to evade freedom of information laws by sending emails outside of official White House channels was hosted on those same SmarTech servers.Given that the Bush White House used SmarTech servers to send and receive email, the use of one of those servers in tabulating Ohio’s election returns has raised eyebrows. Ohio gave Bush the decisive margin in the Electoral College to secure his reelection in 2004.IT expert Stephen Spoonamore says the SmartTech server could have functioned as a routing point for malicious activity and remains a weakness in electronic voting tabulation."...I have reason to believe that the alternate accounts were used to communicate with US Attorneys involved in political prosecutions, like that of Don Siegelman," said RAW STORY's Investigative News Editor, Larisa Alexandrovna, on her personal blog Saturday morning. "This is what I have been working on to prove for over a year. In fact, it was through following the Siegelman-Rove trail that I found evidence leading to Connell. That is how I became aware of him. Mike was getting ready to talk. He was frightened."He has flown his private plane for years without incident. I know he was going to DC last night, but I don't know why. He apparently ran out of gas, something I find hard to believe. I am not saying that this was a hit nor am I resigned to this being simply an accident either. I am no expert on aviation and cannot provide an opinion on the matter. What I am saying, however, is that given the context, this event needs to be examined carefully.""Mr. Connell has confided that he was being threatened, something that his attorneys also told the judge in the Ohio election fraud case," concluded Alexandrovna.An FAA investigation into the causes of Connell's plane crash is underway, but no results are expected for several weeks.
This was just too strange to pass up while on vacation. Peter B. had Larisa on the show on KGOE 1480 today. It will be interesting to see how this develops.

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Went South for Christmas, up date to follow

It's Christmas and I am with my family. Will be back before New Year. Hope to have holiday posting here soon.

Friday, December 12, 2008

Jeff Rense Show Massive Failure Last Night

Last night at about 9:20pm, the Jeff Rense show went off the air. After checking all the usual stuff locally to see if it was a problem on my end, I called ABC in New York. They informed me that the show had a massive failure and that none of the stations that run the show were getting it. They didn't know the cause of the problem, they just said they had everybody working on it.

I put on some Paul Harvey and a segment of Art of the Song for our kgoe listeners here in Humboldt Co. California.

The show was a re-run with guest David Blume. The subject was alcohol for cars. They were discussing how we could grow almost anything, distill it and make our own alcohol to run our cars on. They had just discussed how the oil companies were manipulating the prices of corn and methanol, noting that corn prices have fallen even though we are still using and making just as much alcohol as when corn prices were high. They went to a break and never came back.

Was there sabotage? I don't know, but the information was something that I don't think the auto industry or the oil companies wanted out there.

Thursday, December 11, 2008

First Cold Storm Of The Season This Weekend

The first cold winter storm of the season is expected to bring thunderstorms, hail and snow to the north coast this weekend. Snow levels could be as low as the valley floors. This means the 199, 299, 101 and 36 highways will be effected.

Be prepared for power outages and slippery driving conditions starting late Friday 12-12-08 and going on until about the middle of next week.

See National Weather Service Special Weather Statement at link below.

Friday, December 5, 2008

Humboldt County's First-of-Its-Kind Citizen Oversight Program Finds 197 Ballots Dropped, Miscounted by Voting System in One Precinct

Company Knew About Software Flaw, Failed to Notify County...
Guest Blogged by John Gideon of VotersUnite.org
First I think congratulations are in order for Humboldt County California Registrar of Voters Carolyn Crnich. Crnich worked with local voters and began the "Humboldt Election Transparency Project". The Eureka Times-Standard describes the program like this:

The basic idea behind the first-of-its-kind transparency project is fairly simple: every ballot cast in an election is passed through an optical scanner after being officially counted and the images are then placed online and available for download.
Software, created by volunteer Mitch Trachtenberg, then allows viewers to sort the ballots by precinct or race to conduct recounts at their pleasure.

Thursday, December 4, 2008

Good Morning Neighbors! Breakfast Program

I found this at the People Project blog.
November 25, 2008 by peopleproject
PEOPLE PROJECT’S Good Morning Neighbors! Breakfast Program
This ain’t charity. It’s SURVIVAL!
Every Tuesday and Friday from about 8:20am to 10:45am, there is coffee, herbal tea, hot 7-grain cereal, morning potatoes, and fresh fruit for anyone who wants a good morning lift! [No money involved] Breakfast is on the corner of Fairfield and Hawthorne in Eureka (up the block from the Serenity Inn on Broadway). Sometimes we also share fruit smoothies, nuts, yogurt, peanut butter and jelly, homemade muffins, apple juice and sauce, or cake.
We hope to inspire people to share community breakfast wherever you are. If you’re interested in donating supplies or helping on Tuesdays and/or Friday, please contact us at peopleproject@riseup.net or 707-618-9185. Also, we have alot of set up supplies (including an ez-up canopy for rainy days) if anyone wants to do breakfast on other days of the week at the same spot. Two people is the minimum to prepare and be present throughout breakfast. What a great way to start the day!
PEOPLE PROJECT believes that the power is in the people to take care of each other in generous and creative ways. And that it is vital to connect and learn from the experience of the most oppressed communities

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Last Minute Rulemaking by Bush USDA Threatens Organic Farmers

Consumers and Farmers Join Together to Promote Organic Integrity
CORNUCOPIA, Wisconsin - December 3 - Many media outlets, from the New York Times to the blogosphere, have tracked what has been dubbed the "corporate takeover" of organic farming. One of the hottest controversies in this rapidly growing $20 billion industry has been giant factory farms milking thousands of cows each in feedlots and masquerading as organic. Some of these industrial dairies are controlled by the nation's largest agribusinesses.
Since the organic community first appealed to the USDA for better clarification and enforcement of regulations requiring organic dairy producers to graze their cattle, nearly 9 years ago, the number of giant industrial dairy operations, with as many as 10,000 cows, has grown from two to approximately 15. After years of delay, the USDA has finally responded with a new proposed rule that they said would crack down on abuses.

See Entire Article at Common Dreams.org
(photo courtesy of www.deesillustrations.com )

Getting More Local

I have been trying to get my act together and do more local blogging. I don't have any special local contacts like some of the local bloggers but I do work in a news room. Currently, I only blog from the radio station. I will be changing that soon.

I have procured a new notebook computer and have ordered a cord to connect my video camera to it. I am also working on bundling phone, cable t.v. and Internet access so I can blog from home. The notebook has wi-fi and it would be fun to blog from wi-fi spots as well. I have a lot of reading to do and have been trying to navigate Windows Vista. So far, Windows Vista sucks. I was trained on 98 and XP.

I haven't done much blogging since the Thanksgiving holiday but should be back with some local shots from Humboldt when I get all this stuff figured out.

Thanks for checking in and giving me a reason to do this.