Wednesday, April 30, 2014


20 minutes after the administration of a three-drug cocktail began, Clayton Lockett was writhing on the gurney, putting a halt to his execution; he died later of a heart attack

The Oklahoma execution of Clayton Lockett was halted 20 minutes after the administration of a three-drug cocktail began. The execution began at 6:23 p.m. Tuesday. Ten minutes later a doctor declared Lockett to be unconscious. But three minutes after that, Lockett began breathing heavily, writhing on the gurney, clenching his teeth and straining to lift his head off the pillow.

A doctor determined that Lockett’s vein had ruptured. After a series of phone calls by Department of Corrections Director Robert Patton, the execution was halted some 20 minutes after it began. Later, Patton announced that Lockett had died of a heart attack at 7:06 p.m. while he was still in the execution chamber.

Charles Warner had been scheduled for execution two hours after Lockett’s. Patton postponed his execution for 14 days.

The botched execution is bound to get the death penalty abolitionists all exercised. You can bet there will be a frenzy of appeals on behalf of Warner and all the death row inmates in other states that are awaiting execution with drugs supplied by compounding pharmacies. And look for Lockett’s family to file a hefty lawsuit against the State of Oklahoma.

My unsolicited advise to Oklahoma is to switch to pentobarbital, the single-dose execution drug that is being used without any problems by its neighboring state of Texas.

What is so sad here is that a lot of people are more concerned about Lockett’s brief suffering than the prolonged suffering of the young woman he so brutally raped and murdered.


Vanessa Stiviano was either an archivist or an office fixture, not Donald Sterling’s girlfriend

By Pamela Putz

The Unconventional Gazette
April 29, 2014

TMZ reports that Vanessa Stiviano, or whatever her real name is, considered herself Donlad Sterling’s archivist, not his girlfriend, and as such she was taping all of their conversations. And her lawyer Siamak ‘Mac’ Nehoray backs her up by saying Stiviano was never Sterling’s girlfriend. Nehoray released a statement which said Stiviano was "a veritable fixture" in the old fool’s businesses.

Now let me get this straight. If she was Sterling’s archivist, she was the world’s best paid archivist. Since she got paid with a Ferrari convertible, two Bentleys, a Range Rover, a $1.8 million duplex apartment and $240,000 for living expenses, I can see a rush of college and university students changing their majors to get a degree that will qualify them as archivists.

If, on the other hand, Stiviano was a fixture in Sterling’s businesses, I can envision a fixture on his office couch or desk, on its backside with legs spread apart. Unlike with archivists, women do not need a college degree to qualify as office fixtures.

In either case, here we have another example of why the only difference between a lawyer and a liar is the spelling.


Meredith Kercher’s death was the result of a fight between her and Amanda Knox over money, rather than the result of a sex-game gone awry

I have never been convinced that Amanda Knox did not kill her roommate Meredith Kercher in their Italian apartment in 2007. She was not the angel depicted by the media and her parents and friends. And I always thought the criticism of the Italian courts by American legal experts was unwarranted.

The report by the Italian court explaining why Foxy Knox was convicted again during the second trial makes a lot of sense. It reveals that two knives were used to kill Kercher and that multiple persons participated in the murder, two doing the knifing and the other(s) holding her down.

Wounds showed she was held down and stabbed by 'multiple aggressors

By Chris Pleasance

Mail Online
April 29, 2014

The Italian court that reconvicted Amanda Knox of Meredith Kercher's murder says the two exchange students fought over money on the night of Kercher's death.

The appellate court in Florence issued a 337-page explanation for its January guilty verdicts against the American and her former boyfriend Raffaele Sollecito.

The court said that a third person convicted in the murder, Rudy Hermann Guede, did not act alone, saying Kercher's wounds indicated 'multiple aggressors'.

It noted that at least two knives were used to attack 21-year-old Meredith Kercher and that there were also finger imprints on her body, indicating she had been restrained - ruling out the possibility that Guede was the only attacker.

The court said there was ample evidence of a bad relationship between the two roommates, despite Knox's attempts to play down differences in court.

It cited statements by Guede under police questioning that Kercher had blamed Knox for taking money from the British student's room.

'It is a matter of fact that at a certain point in the evening events accelerated; the English girl was attacked by Amanda Marie Knox, by Raffaele Sollecito, who was backing up his girlfriend, and by Rudy Hermann Guede, and constrained within her own room,' the document said.

The court said it was not necessary for all of the assailants to have the same motive, and that the murder was not attributable to a sex game gone awry, as it was out of Kercher's character to have ever consented to such activity.

The release of the court's reasoning opens the verdict to an appeal back to the supreme Court of Cassation. If it confirms the convictions, a long extradition fight for Knox is expected.

She has been in the United States since 2011 when her earlier conviction was overturned.

Ms Kercher, 21, was found dead in a pool of blood on November 2, 2007 in the apartment she and Knox shared in the town of Perugia.

Her partially-clothed body was discovered under a bed-sheet and a forensic test later showed evidence of sexual activity in the hours before she died, leading to the theory that the death was part of a sex-game gone wrong.

In 2008 Rudy Guede is found guilty of Miss Kercher's murder and sentenced to 30 years behind bars. He had requested a separate trial after rumours Knox and Sollecito would attempt to frame him.

In January 2009 Knox and Sollecito are put on trial, and in December the same year the pair around found guilty of murder and sentenced to 25 and 23 years in prison, respectively.

In 2010 Knox appealed her sentence, and in 2011 appeared in court to argue that she had been the victim of a 'huge mistake'. Her lawyers argued that DNA evidence had been corrupted by lack of proper equipment.

On October 3, Knox and Sollecito are freed after a court upholds their appeal. Knox travelled back to her home in Seattle, while Sollecito remained in Italy.

However, last year Italy's highest court overturned the appeal decision, and the case was once again back in court, though Knox refused to appear.

On January 30, an Italian appeals court convicted the pair of murdering former roommate Kercher for a second time - a ruling the pair are again appealing.

'I am frightened and saddened by this unjust verdict,' Knox wrote after the ruling. 'Having been found innocent before, I expected better from the Italian justice system.'

Sollecito did appear in court for the appeal and, after they were reconvicted, was found in a hotel near the Italian border before having his passport revoked.

At the time, Stephanie Kercher that she felt her sister 'had been forgotten' in the media storm surrounding Amanda Knox, and added her family had struggled to keep their memories of the 21-year-old alive.

After originally being cleared, Knox returned to America. Since her reconviction she has so far refused to go back to Italy to serve her sentence, saying she will have to be extradited 'kicking and screaming'.

Prosecution lawyer Manuela Comodi has previously said it would have been 'impossible' for just one person to have killed her.

'One person couldn't, all at the same time, hold Meredith still and hold back her hands - because there are very few defensive wounds - inflict those wounds with a smaller knife and then give her the fatal blow with the larger knife. It is impossible. Not even Superman could do it,' she said.

'The principal evidence was mixed blood traces from which were extracted mixed DNA of Amanda and Meredith. The only explanation for that mix is that Amanda was bleeding and touched objects that were covered in Meredith's blood. There's no other explanation.'


The U.S. sanctions strategy is designed to make it look like the United States is trying to change Russian policy

George Friedman says ‘the limited sanctions are aimed at those in Congress who have made this a major issue and at those parts of the State Department that want to orient U.S. national security policy around the issue of human rights. … Both can be told that something is being done -- and both can pretend that something is being done -- when in fact nothing can be done.

By George Friedman

Stratfor Global Intelligence
April 29, 2014

The United States announced new sanctions on seven Russian government officials April 28. A long-used tactic, sanctions can yield unpredictable effects or have no effect at all, depending upon how they are crafted. It is commonly assumed that sanctions are applied when a target country's actions are deemed unacceptable. The sanctioning nation presumably chooses sanctions to avoid war when war would be too costly or could result in defeat.

Sanctions' stated purpose is to induce behavioral changes in a target state by causing economic pain. To work, sanctions must therefore cause pain. But they must not be so severe that they convince the target state that war is more desirable than capitulating to the demands of the sanctioning nation.

When Sanctions Work Too Well

In July 1941, when the Japanese invaded Indo-China, the United States responded by freezing all Japanese assets. The United Kingdom and the Dutch East Indies (today's Indonesia) followed suit. The sanctions were quite effective, and Japan wound up cut off from the bulk of international trade, losing 90 percent of its imported oil. Japan had to respond, but instead of withdrawing from Indo-China, it attacked Pearl Harbor.

The Japanese example is worth considering. The United States placed Japan in a situation where its oil supplies would be depleted in months, at which point Japan would cease to be an industrial power. Tokyo could have accepted the American terms, but once it did this, it would have established a U.S. veto over Japanese decisions.

The Japanese did not trust the United States and were convinced that any capitulation to sanctions would simply lead to more U.S. demands. Tokyo understood the risks of war but calculated that these risks were lower than the risks of complying with U.S. demands (though the Japanese might well have been wrong in this calculation, and Franklin Roosevelt might well have known that Tokyo would choose war over capitulation). Faced with sanctions that would cripple the nation, Japan chose war.

Sanctions perform better against nations that lack retaliatory options, including the option of waging war. Iran is an example of a perfect target for sanctions. Without a deliverable nuclear device, it lacks the option to wage war, and it has few other ways to retaliate. (Even with countries like Iran, however, sanctions can have a limited effect if the target can find ways to get around the sanctions.)

Precision-Guided Sanctions

Placing effective sanctions on a country such as Russia is much more complicated than placing them on countries like Iran or the Central African Republic because the Russians have potential military responses. They also have the ability to retaliate by seizing Western assets in Russia: There are many Western companies doing business in Russia with significant equipment, factories, bank accounts and so on. Moscow also has the power to cut energy supplies to Europe. Whether it would be prudent for Russia respond in those ways is an important question, but the mere fact Russia has a range of retaliatory options is an important consideration.

Partly for that reason and partly because of a theory of sanctions that has emerged in recent years, the United States and some European countries have largely opted out of placing sanctions on Russia as a whole. Instead, they have place sanctions on individuals and a small number of companies in Russia deemed responsible for actions in Ukraine that the United States and Europe find objectionable. We might call these "precision-guided sanctions," or sanctions intended to compel a change in direction without inflicting collateral damage or risking significant retaliation.

The idea of placing sanctions on regimes rather than on nations originated with the obvious fact that if successful, sanctions on nations harm the entire population, most of whom are innocent and powerless, while leaving the leaders who have created the crisis in power and free to shift the burden to the population. The Iraq example is frequently cited. There, a strong regime of economic sanctions was imposed on the country, severely diminishing Iraqis' standard of living while allowing the leadership to profit from various loopholes intended to ease the burden on the public.

The idea of sanctions against specific leaders to avoid harming the general public emerged from this and other experiences. This approach has dominated the Western response to Russian actions in Ukraine. By attacking the economic interests of key Russian leaders, or at least of their inner circles, the West appears to be trying to force changes in Russian policy toward Ukraine. This raises a number of important questions.

Limits to Sanctions on Russia

First, there is the question of whether Russian leaders care more for power or for money. In the 1990s, money generated power, but the two are more aligned now: Those with power and those with money are the same. It is therefore hard to imagine that the Putin regime will shift policy -- and thereby admit weakness, a fatal error for anyone in power -- to preserve part of its members' fortunes.

Moreover, the Russian leadership has kept some of its money inside Russia to avoid seizure by Western governments. Certainly, some of the leadership's money has flowed out of Russia, but not all of it. The people who have been targeted will not suddenly be hurled onto the welfare rolls in Russia because of the current sanctions. The targeted individuals will respond to the U.S. sanctions with indifference. They may lose some assets in the ensuing treasure hunt. But their resulting domestic popularity boost will offset this, a boost perhaps costing no more than a high-power Washington public relations firm might charge. And given their positions, they can certainly earn back whatever they lose in seizures.

Second, there is the question of intertwined assets. Russian leaders have invested in many Russian companies with interests in Western companies. In some instances, they are involved in joint ventures with Western companies.

To illustrate the Western dilemma, let's assume there is a joint venture between Rosneft and a Western oil company. How exactly does the West proceed with sanctions in such a situation? Does it seize all or just some of the assets of the joint venture? What liability does it inflict on other shareholders, Western and Russian, who are not on the sanctions list? Now go further and consider an investment in a U.S. private equities firm by a Mexican fund with investors from Cyprus who may include people on the sanctions list. In modern capitalism, investment paths can be twisted indeed.

One might be able to track down assets in a relatively small country with limited assets. But Russia is the eight-largest economy in the world, and its wealth is intertwined with the targets of the sanctions, greatly complicating the challenge of crafting effective precision-guided sanctions.

Third, there is the political question. Russian President Vladimir Putin's popularity has soared since the Russian annexation of Crimea. As in the West, Russian leaders appearing to act decisively in foreign crises enjoy higher approval ratings, at least initially. Putin may find it difficult not to respond to the sanctions because if he fails to act, he could lose some of the popularity he gained by his appearance of strength.

Intentionally Ineffective Sanctions

In addition, the United States doesn't want to threaten regime survival in a country with massive military power. Nor does it want to engage in an action that would trigger an invasion of Ukraine and force the United States to either back away or join a war it is unprepared for. It also will try to avoid mistakenly seizing U.S. and European assets -- assets deployed by Russia deliberately to bait Washington into making just such a mistake.

The Obama administration has a final major reason to avoid effective sanctions. If someone had said a year ago that U.S.-Russian relations would reach the present point, they would have been laughed at, something I can attest to. Foreign investment is a major component of the U.S. economy, and distinguished political leaders are an excellent source of capital. If you are the leader of China, Saudi Arabia or India, all of which have problems with the United States that could conceivably mushroom, you might think twice before investing your money in the United States. And there are more countries than those four that have potential conflicts with the United States.

The U.S. sanctions strategy is therefore not designed to change Russian policies; it is designed to make it look like the United States is trying to change Russian policy. And it is aimed at those in Congress who have made this a major issue and at those parts of the State Department that want to orient U.S. national security policy around the issue of human rights. Both can be told that something is being done -- and both can pretend that something is being done -- when in fact nothing can be done. In a world clamoring for action, prudent leaders sometimes prefer the appearance of doing something to actually doing something.

Tuesday, April 29, 2014


The billionaire NBA team owner who doesn’t like blacks says that when he’s making love to Vanessa Stiviano, he’s making love to the Mexican part of her, not to the black part

By Ima Schmuck

The Unconventional Gazette
April 28, 2014

The Unconventional Gazette managed to obtain exclusive interviews with the two principals in the Donald Sterling racial brouhaha.


SCHMUCK: Mr. Sterling, you are being painted as a racist by the media, leading sports figures, Al Sharpton and many other public figures. President Obama has said you were ignorant. How do you respond to that?

DONALD STERLING: I’m not a racist, I just don’t like blacks. They’re lazy, depend on government handouts, steal from white people, their women drop kids right and left from multiple fathers, they kill each other in their own neighborhoods and I could go on and on.

As for Obama calling me ignorant, isn’t that like the kettle calling the pot black!? I’m not ignorant, but in retrospect, I’ll admit it was ignorant of me to donate money to Obama’s election campaigns.

SCHMUCK: Aren’t you stereotyping a whole group of people when you say all that?

STERLING: Yes I am, but I’m not saying anything you don’t read in the papers and see on TV every day.

SCHMUCK: You say you don’t like blacks, but in Vanessa Stiviano, or whatever her real name is, you have a mistress who is half black.

STERLING: That’s right, but when I’m making love to her, I’m making love to the Mexican part of her, not to the black part. And when we’re seen together in public, she looks Mexican, not black.

SCHMUCK: How can you dislike blacks so much when almost all of the players on your NBA team are black?

STERLING: Listen, I pay those guys millions of dollars. If it wasn’t for their basketball skills, they’d probably still be in the hood subsisting on government handouts, gangbanging each other, using and selling dope and fathering children with dozens of women and not supporting the little bastards. Hardly any of my players actually graduated from the colleges they played for and some of them are functionally illiterate, having to depend on their agents, financial advisers and lawyers to keep from squandering the money I pay them.

SCHMUCK: You’re Jewish. Why do you stereotype black people? Isn’t that the same as when anti-Semites stereotype Jews as all being rich, owning all the banks and dominating our government, if not the world?

STERLING: Yes, but those claims are a pack of lies. And in this country most blacks, including those civil rights icons Al Sharpton and Jesse Jackson, are anti-Semitics. Blacks are the largest group of Jew haters in this country. They accuse us Jews of charging them exorbitant rents for rundown housing, owning stores in black neighborhoods that sell them inferior merchandize at inflated prices and for trying to destroy their race by infecting blacks with diseases. That’s why I don’t like blacks.

Blacks call us Jews slumlords. Slumlords? Shit, I got sued twice for refusing to rent to blacks because I did not want them to turn my properties into slums. … That’s all I have to say for now, madam.

In your report, please be sure to reiterate that I am not a racist! I would appreciate your informing all those people who are dumping on me that I gave $50,000 to the United Negro College Fund and $50,000 to the Black Business Association of L.A. And I’ve also made a sizable contribution to the NAACP. That is not something a racist would do.

SCHMUCK: OK, and thank you Mr. Sterling.


SCHMUCK: Rochelle Sterling has accused you of being a gold-digger who seduces and cajoles wealthy older men into showering you with luxurious gifts. How do you respond to that?

STIVIANO: That bitch is just pissed off because Donald preferred making love to me rather than to her.

SCHMUCK: But you’re a 38-year-old woman being kept by an 81-year old man who has given you a Ferrari convertible, two Benfleys, a Range Rover, a $1.8 million duplex apartment and $240,000 for living expenses. That does seem like you’ve cajoled an old man into showering you with luxurious gifts.

STIVIANO: Look, I can’t help it if Donald likes my looks and my body. So, he’s given me a few gifts. I’ve given myself to him. Why half the time he can’t even get it up. I can’t help it if older men desire me. Why shouldn’t I get a few gifts for giving them what they want? I have not cajoled any of them to give me any gifts.

SCHMUCK: Doesn’t it bother you to be exposed as a rich man’s mistress? What makes you different from a prostitute?

STIVIANO: It doesn’t bother me all. I’m living well. Donald lets me fuck whomever I want, including those blacks he doesn’t like. I think a lot of working women are just jealous of me because they’re struggling to survive while I’m living the good life. And I’m not a prostitute. Unlike a whore, as a mistress to rich old guys, I never demanded anything for my services and I never negotiated any price for my services.

SCHMUCK: Mr. Sterling doesn’t like blacks. You’re half black. He says that when he’s making love to you, he’s making love to the Mexican part of you, not to the black part. How do you feel about that?

STIVIANO: I don’t blame Donald for making love to the Mexican part of me. After all, Mexican women are hot lovers and the Mexican part of me is hot stuff! Listen honey, we’ve got to cut his off because I need to go out and find myself another old sugar daddy.

SCHMUCK: Thank you for being so candid with us and good luck on finding a new sugar daddy.

STIVIANO: You’re welcome honey, and don’t you worry, I won’t have any trouble finding another rich old guy to take good care of me. When I wear my short miniskirts and show a lot of cleavage, those old geezers line up to slobber all over me and forget they’ve got a wife at home.


Kerry wants Netanyahu out and warns that if Israel doesn’t make concessions to the Palestinians it will become an apartheid state and invite terrorist attacks against its civilians

The Daily Beast obtained a recording of remarks John Kerry made Friday before a closed meeting of the Trilateral Commission. From the Daily Beast:

If there’s no two-state solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict soon, Israel risks becoming “an apartheid state,” Secretary of State John Kerry told a room of influential world leaders in a closed-door meeting Friday.

It wasn't the only controversial comment on the Middle East that Kerry made during his remarks to the Trilateral Commission, a recording of which was obtained by The Daily Beast. Kerry also repeated his warning that a failure of Middle East peace talks could lead to a resumption of Palestinian violence against Israeli citizens. He suggested that a change in either the Israeli or Palestinian leadership could make achieving a peace deal more feasible. He lashed out against Israeli settlement-building. And Kerry said that both Israeli and Palestinian leaders share the blame for the current impasse in the talks.

Kerry also said that at some point, he might unveil his own peace deal and tell both sides to “take it or leave it.”

According to the 1998 Rome Statute, the “crime of apartheid” is defined as “inhumane acts… committed in the context of an institutionalized regime of systematic oppression and domination by one racial group over any other racial group or groups and committed with the intention of maintaining that regime.” The term is most often used in reference to the system of racial segregation and oppression that governed South Africa from 1948 until 1994.

Comparing Israel to the repressive white regime that ruled South Africa is a new low for the Obama administration. There are 1.5 million Arabs living in Israel and, as Israeli citizens, they enjoy full equality with Jewish citizens.

While Kerry blamed both sides for the impasse, he clearly put most of the blame on Israel and its settlements. And when he suggested a change in leadership, he was really thinking much more about Netanyahu than Abbas. That is a reflection of the hatred Obama has for Netanyahu.

Saying that the failure to achieve a two-state solution will lead to a third intifada is nothing more than a veiled threat. If anything, it is an invitation for the Palestinians to resume their terrorist attacks against Israeli civilians.


The Veracruz cops must have visited the Houston Police Department for some training with HPD’s homicide division. Several HPD homicide investigators were recently disciplined for failing to make murder investigations in due time or for failing to make any investigation at all. Or maybe they visited NYPD which has been cooking its crime statistics to make the city look good and safe. But whether Houston or NY, Veracruz has outdone them all and by a country mile.

On top of sloppy investigations and reporting, Mexican cops are often afraid to approach a gangland slaying crime scene for fear of being targeted by the gangsters responsible for the killing(s) they should be investigating.

By Omar Sánchez de Tagle

Borderland Beat
April 27, 2014

With the correction made before the Executive Secretariat of the National Public Security System, preliminary investigations open for that crime rose from 537 to 836 for 2013.

In Veracruz, homicides and kidnappings are on the rise according to recent figures released by the Executive Secretariat of the National Public Security System, in the latest report, this organization reported and had to modify their figures since they failed to report the additional 299 intentional homicides in 2013.

With this, the registered figures in the state increased by 53%, with the intentional homicide figures rising from 537 to 836 for 2013.

According to the analyst Alejandro Hope, the fact that Veracruz barely reported 299 homicides just recently, is proof that the revised figures at national level have not been completed and that the above mentioned “reflects instability in the proportionate figures”.

The fact that the figures are modified, Hope said, changes any basis for comparison, “for example Veracruz initially reported that they had 48,000 preliminary investigations in 2013, and in the new report from the Secretariat yesterday, it reports that there were actually 72,000 preliminary investigations meaning that there were 24,000 crimes committed, that were reported, and that were not reported in due time.”

Elsewhere in the report, the Executive Secretariat of the National Public Security System detailed that the kidnappings in Veracruz have increased 51.81% over the first quarter of 2013 which goes from January to March.

In fact, in the first three months of 2013, they had initiated 27 criminal investigations for unlawful deprivation of liberty and during 2014, kidnappings increased to 41 in the state.

According to the Executive Secretariat of the National Public Security System, kidnappings nationwide have increased month by month in the first quarter of 2014 by more than 7% and explains that the states with the largest number of victims are Tamaulipas with 103, Michoacán with 72, the State of Mexico with 50, Morelos with 46, and Veracruz with 42.

Intentional Homicide

On the report on crime rate, you can observe that from February to March of 2013 there were 428 intentional homicides committed and during the same period but for 2014, there were 547 intentional homicides registered.

The figures from the Executive Secretariat of the National Public Security System show that during the first quarter of this year, there was a decrease of 12.21% compared to the same period as last year.

In fact in the report the Secretariat disaggregated between intentional and culpable the 8,345 homicides that occurred between January and March of this year.

This new document shows that the total number of victims of intentional homicides that go into this year is 4,497 with March being the month with the highest number of people killed totaling 1,577.

Monday, April 28, 2014


Cajoling gold digger has hit the mother lode

Donald Sterling is an old fool, a real honest-to-goodness old fool! The 81-year-old billionaire owner of the L.A. Clippers, who got caught on an audio recording telling his 38-year-old trophy-girlfriend Vanessa Stiviano not to bring black people to his NBA team’s games or to have her picture taken with them, has spent a ton of money showering her with extravagant living expenses, exotic cars and a luxurious apartment.

With respect to the blacks Sterling does not want her to be seen with, Stiviano – aka Vanessa Maria Perez, aka Monica Gallegos, aka Maria Monica Perez Gallegos, aka Maria Valdez – happens to be a half-breed Mexican and African-American. Sterling, generous to a fault, was heard on the audio recording giving her permission to “sleep with” black people.

There is a suspicion that Sterling’s wife had a bug planted in his home to get even with the philandering fool.

In a lawsuit filed by Sterling’s estranged wife of 50 years, Rochelle Sterling claims that the old fool showered Stiviano with lavish gifts, among them:

A 2012 Ferrari Convertible

2 Bentleys

A Range Rover

A $1.8 million duplex apartment

Rochelle also alleges the old geezer gave Stiviano $240,000 for living expenses.

Rochelle called Stiviano a gold-digger who seduces and cajoles wealthy older men into showering her with luxurious gifts.

It looks like Stiviano, or whatever her real name is, has hit the mother lode of an old fool.


The wind industry has admitted that without taxpayer handouts, its form of energy can’t compete

Not only are the wind farms a blight on the landscape and a threat to migratory birds, but if it were not for tax subsidies, those ugly bird-killing wind turbines would probably not exist.


Investors Business Daily
April 22, 2014

Failed Policy: The federal government has spent some $100 billion in taxpayer subsidies on green energy since 2006. Now we are seeing the flimsy and declining returns on that investment.

The wind industry saw its growth tumble by 92% last year, according to a new report from the American Wind Energy Association (AWEA), and that's off of a very low base to begin with.

Big Wind blames the decline in output on uncertainty over the future of a federal wind industry tax credit — an absurdly generous subsidy of 2.3 cents per kilowatt hour produced.

This handout is what keeps those giant turbines twirling. These subsidies have been thrown at the renewable energy industry for more than a decade and always with the promise by AWEA that profitability is right around the corner. Sure it is.

The reality is that the wind industry is to energy production what Amtrak is to intercity transportation — a perpetual tax-dollar burning machine.

The wind industry has admitted that without the taxpayer handouts, its form of energy can't compete. In other words, in a free market system for energy, wind is, well, winded.

One reason for the dismal state of affairs for wind is the shale oil and gas revolution. In six years the price of natural gas in the U.S. has plummeted to $4 a gallon from $12. None of the brilliant central planners in Washington ever saw that coming.

The fatal conceit of government planners is to believe they can see the future better than private entrepreneurs and investors.

The green energy lobby counters that oil and gas get subsidies, so why not bestow favors on renewables? But a report by the Institute for Energy Research based on Congressional Research Service data indicates that, based on per kilowatt of electricity produced, wind and solar receive more than 10 times the subsidy that fossil fuel producers do. (See chart).

And if oil and gas are subsidized, better to also get rid of those handouts instead of creating an energy subsidy arms race that taxpayers always lose.

The entire rationale for renewable energy subsidies was to reduce carbon emissions, but natural gas is achieving that at a fraction of the cost. The U.S. has reduced its carbon emissions in recent years primarily as a result of the shift toward natural gas for electric power.

It's not a stretch to believe the real motivation behind the big push for another round of "temporary" wind subsidies is to line the pockets of major Democratic campaign donors who have bet the farm on renewable energy.

Now those investments are going bust, so the CEOs are rushing to President Obama and Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid to be financially rescued. And these are the people who say that Republicans are in the game of pay to play.

The solution here is simple. Let the market work in energy. That means government has to stop picking industry winners and losers — if only because it has such a dreadful track record. How many more hundreds of millions of dollars does Uncle Sam have to lose on a Solyndra or a Fisker to figure this out?

Killing the wind tax credit would be a first step to tax reform and create a level playing field in energy policy — two things taxpayers have been awaiting for decades.


By Bob Walsh

PACOVILLA Corrections blog
April 25, 2014

It seems that the feds want to cut their prison population. They are focusing on (mostly black) crack dealers who are not gang involved or otherwise heavy criminals. The president may commute the sentences of thousands of them.

Theoretically those eligible for consideration must have at least ten years in, have not been a disciplinary problem and maybe meet other criteria which AG Eric Holder is working on. The paid liar for the White House, Jay Carney, assured us that only “worthy candidates” will be considered for commutation of sentence.

The move is being considered because Barack Obama thinks the drug laws are “unfair” and the mean people in congress won’t change the law, so he will just have to do an end-around.

Damn, I feel more fair already. Don’t you?

Sunday, April 27, 2014


Police interrogation techniques can lead the innocent to give false confessions

False confessions are a recurring problem in criminal investigations. There are the nutjobs who will confess to every crime publicized in the newspapers or on TV. Those confessions are quickly dismissed. But false confessions obtained through questionable interrogation techniques are another matter that the police have thus far failed to address. Grits for Breakfast has a very good post on this problem.


Grits for Breakfast
April 25, 2014

At the Austin Chronicle, Jordan Smith has an excellent, extended story on an Austin case involving a husband who falsely confessed to murdering his wife, only to have DNA exculpate him. The whole article is well worth reading but here's a notable excerpt describing research about how and why false confessions occur:

The problem with false confessions, experts say, is that many people – even people within the criminal justice system – find it hard to comprehend that a person would actually admit to something that he didn't do. But it happens, and not rarely. According to the Innocence Project, 25% of wrongful convictions overturned by DNA evidence involve a false confession. And many of those confessions actually contain details that match the crime – details that were not in the public domain, says Saul Kassin, a social psychologist and expert in false confessions who is a professor at John Jay College of Criminal Justice in New York. The problem is that all of those details are already known to police, and through the process of interrogation those details can, and do, shape a person's confession, with police – purposely or inadvertently – divulging details of the crime.

Once a confession is made, it's incredibly powerful, say Kassin and others who study false confessions and the tactics that lead to them; jurors often consider a confession infallible evidence, he explains, even though research clearly demonstrates that is not always the case. Among the most vulnerable suspects are those actually innocent, Kassin points out – in many ways, innocence is their enemy. "When I ask innocent people, 'First of all, why didn't you lawyer up?' they tilt their head and look at me like I'm crazy ... and say, 'Well, I didn't need a lawyer, I didn't do anything wrong,'" he says. "They volunteer to take lie detector tests, they volunteer their keys, their shoes, their cars, and they just don't apprehend that there is any risk. And their explanation is as simple as, 'I didn't do anything wrong, I have nothing to do with it, I have nothing to fear, I have nothing to hide – in fact, the more they get to know me, the more they'll see that I didn't do it,'" he continues. "People believe in the transparency of their innocence."

The problem can be compounded by the fact that police generally believe they have a good sense for determining which of the people they encounter during an investigation should be elevated to suspect status. In fact, according to research done by both Kassin and by Iowa State University psychology professor Christian Meissner and others, police are actually no better at determining who is lying to them than are untrained laypeople. Indeed, some of the signs police are trained to believe indicate deception, and techniques they're taught to use in interrogations, may negatively impact their ability to determine lies from truth.

The dominant method of interrogation used in the U.S. is known as the Reid Technique, named after its originator, former Chicago cop John Reid. It's an adversarial and persuasive technique designed to yield compliance from suspects – police are taught to assess in a first interview whether a person should be considered a suspect and then, once that determination is made, to not allow the suspect any ability to deny their involvement in the crime. "It is an excellent ... psychological approach to getting confessions from criminals," Kassin says. "I think the problem begins with this. I always say this: If every person interrogated was the criminal, the Reid Technique would be perfect. The problem is [police] often bring innocent people into the interrogation room." (In fact, during one early use of the technique by Reid himself, a false confession was extracted from a man whose wife had been murdered; it took more than five decades for the man to be exonerated.)

Police have long been taught, for example, that nonverbal cues, like hair touching, leg bouncing, and shifting eye movements, indicate deception. The research says otherwise. "These things ... are in the folklore of police training," says Meissner, but "there is plenty of research to show that they're not reliable." Also problematic are techniques police are allowed to use inside the interrogation room – including techniques that "manipulate the perception of consequences," says Melissa Russano, a professor of criminal justice at Roger Williams Univer¬si¬ty. Specifically including lying to a person about evidence – saying that a fingerprint or DNA ties a person to a crime, when in fact no such evidence exists – or implying leniency, "stressing the importance of cooperation [with police] ... [suggesting] if you cooperate, things will be better for you and if you don't, things are going to get worse," Russano details.

Taken together, investigation detail leakage, faulty assumptions about who is lying, and heavy-handed, perception-altering interrogation tactics increase the likelihood of a false confession.

According to Russano, current research reflects that the heavy-handed tactics traditionally taught to police investigators are less effective and riskier than more information-based approaches, in which detectives use investigative interviewing and rapport-building techniques – open-ended questioning, timeline-building, and fact-checking. "Really, the science is showing that it's about how people tell their stories and how they remember events" that can reveal whether a person is lying, says Meisser. "It's about the cognitive properties of how they tell their stories that tend to be very important." This less adversarial approach is widely used elsewhere in the world, but U.S. police retain their decades-old reliance on the abrasive, unscientific, old-school approach.

Regardless of the technique, however, each confession should be tested for reliability by seeking corroborating evidence. And the very best form of corroboration, says Kassin, is when a suspect provides a detail or fact that police did not already know. "So, if he leads the police to the body, or to the murder weapon, or to whatever was stolen, that is gold-standard, corroborated evidence."

Of a half-dozen recommendations by the Timothy Cole Advisory Panel on Wrongful Convictions, the last one the Texas Legislature has not yet acted on is a requirement to record custodial police interrogations in serious cases. One hopes that this case and other examples of coercive interrogation techniques will spur the Legislature to rectify that oversight when the 84th session convenes in 2015.


By Greg ‘Gadfly’ Doyle

Having interrogated hundreds of suspects, my only assessment of the psychologists is—absent any evidence tying a suspect to a particular crime—your cited sources might have a valid point. I do not know how these analysts came to their conclusions, but I do know that any investigator trying to “wing it” in an interrogation by tricking a suspect into a confession without something stronger than visual cues, is a poor interrogator.

Interrogation is not an easy process to start with; in fact it may take a number of interviews over several hours, in order to confirm or dismiss an alibi or corroborate a story. A good interrogator knows ahead of time what evidence is available and generally allows the suspect to tell his/her side of the story first, before exposing inconsistencies and lies, or even confronting his/her with evidence. The only heavy-handed interview tactics I ever saw used in nine years in Investigations were by my older male bosses (usually captains), who were not supposed to interfere with detectives during interviews.

I remember an instance where one particular Captain became impatient with the length of a suspect interview and barged into the interview room. He told the suspect he could not wait for the day when he would be in the gallery of the gas chamber to watch the guards drop the poison pill that would end the suspect’s life. Fortunately, the suspect was being interviewed for murder. The tactic was effective only in pissing off the lead detective and ruining the chance for a confession that was not coerced.

I cannot vouch for other agencies, but the interrogation training in California never included heavy-handedness. That I know of, all of our dinosaur Captains retired and confessions at my old agency have been secured through the legitimate process of lawful interrogation, approved by the California Commission on Peace Officer Standards and Training and the courts. Our video-taped interrogations always stood up in court.


In front of the whole class, a Houston teacher gave one of her students a sexually explicit lap dance, a unique teaching technique which also qualifies her for the Innovative Classroom Teacher of the Year award

Even though his classmates urged her to do it, school authorities were not too pleased with the birthday gift Felicia Smith gave a student and she is now an ex-teacher out of jail on $30,000 bail awaiting trial for improper relationship with a student.

Another educated idiot teacher’s career comes to a grinding halt after she performs a sexually explicit lap dance on a birthday boy in front of the whole class. I would say Felicia is one of the top candidates for the 2014 Educated Idiot Teacher of the Year award. Then again, Felicia’s unique teaching technique also qualifies her as a top candidate for the 2014 Innovative Classroom Teacher of the Year award.

April 25, 2014

HOUSTON – A middle school teacher has sashayed her way into a lot of trouble after she allegedly gave one of her students a birthday lap dance in front of the entire class.

Felicia Smith, 42, was charged with improper relationship with student.

It all happened at Stovall Middle School on February 26, according to Aldine ISD police.

According to a male student, “Ms. Smith” grabbed his journal and stopped him from talking to his friends as he walked into his third-period class. He said he sat at his desk, and after the tardy bell rang, she placed a chair in front of the room. Music started playing and the entire class of middle school students began yelling and telling him to sit down. It was his birthday.

The student said he sat down and Ms. Smith gave him a full contact lap dance, rotating her buttocks against him and rubbing her hands all over his body. Ms. Smith also got on her knees in front of him and placed her head between his legs. The student admitted that he slapped Ms. Smith on the buttocks a few times.

At the end of the dance, Ms. Smith wrapped her arms around the student and he gave her bottom another squeeze. She hugged him and said “I love you, baby. Happy birthday,” according to documents.

During questioning, Smith admitted that she gave the youngster a lap dance at the urging of his classmates. She recalled that she lost her balance a few times as she circled his chair, which made the students laugh. She said her performance lasted about four minutes.

Investigators reviewed video of the lap dance performance and it actually lasted 3.54 minutes. A copy of the video is on file at the Harris County District Attorney’s Office and another copy is with the Aldine ISD Police Department.

Smith was charged and given a $30,000 bond.

She made her first court appearance Friday morning where her case was reset.

Saturday, April 26, 2014


Following his tiff with Steve Wynn two weeks ago, this song fits Clooney like a glove

After reading LET’S GET READY TO RUMBLE: George Clooney vs. Steve Wynn in a title elimination bout for the World Asshole championship, a good friend wrote: “Jimmy Buffett wrote a song about people like George Clooney.” Actually ‘The I-95 Asshole Song’ was written and recorded in 1983 by Fred Campbell. Later on, Buffett also recorded it. Here are the lyrics to that song:

By Fred Campbell

Well I was drivin' down I-95 the other night
Somebody nearly cut me right off the road
I decided it wasn't gonna do any good to get mad
So I wrote a song about him instead
It goes like this...

Were you born an asshole?
Or did you work at it your whole life?
Either way it worked out fine
'Cause you're an asshole tonight

Yes you're an A-S-S-H-O-L-E
And don't you try to blame it on me
You deserve all the credit
You're an asshole tonight

You were an asshole yesterday
You're an asshole tonight
And I've got a feelin'
You'll be an asshole the rest of your life

(Instrumental Break)

And I was talkin' to your mother
Just the other night
I told her I thought you were an asshole
She said, "Yes, I think you're right"

And all your friends are assholes
'Cause you've known them your whole life
And somebody told me
You've got an asshole for a wife

Were you born an asshole?
Or did you work at it your whole life?
Either way it worked out fine
'Cause you're an aaaass...hole tonight

While we’re at it, here is the music-video of “I’m an Asshole” written by Chris Phillips and Denis Leary and recorded by Leary:

And here are the lyrics:

By Chris Phillips and Denis Leary

Folks, I'd like to sing a song about the American Dream
About me, about you, the way our American hearts beat
Down in the bottom of our chests, about the special feeling

We get in the cockles of our hearts, maybe below the cockles
Maybe in the sub-cockle area, maybe in the liver
Maybe in the kidneys, maybe even in the colon, we don't know

I'm just a regular Joe with a regular job
I'm your average white suburbanite slob
I like football and porno and books about war

I've got an average house with a nice hardwood floor
My wife and my job, my kids and my car
My feet on my table and a Cuban cigar

But sometimes that just ain't enough
To keep a man like me interested
(Oh no)
No way

No, I've gotta go out and have fun
At someone else's expense
(Oh yeah)
Yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah

I drive really slow in the ultrafast lane
While people behind me are going insane

I'm an asshole
(He's an asshole, what an asshole)
I'm an asshole
(He's an asshole, such an asshole)

I use public toilets and piss on the seat
I walk around in the summertime saying
"How about this heat?"

I'm an asshole
(He's an asshole, what an asshole)
I'm an asshole
(He's the world's biggest asshole)

Sometimes I park in handicapped spaces
While handicapped people make handicapped faces

I'm an asshole
(He's an asshole, what an asshole)
I'm an asshole
(He's a real fucking asshole)

Maybe I shouldn't be singing this song
Ranting and raving and carrying on
Maybe they're right when they tell me I'm wrong


I'm an asshole
(He's an asshole, what an asshole)
I'm an asshole
(He's the world's biggest asshole)

You know what I'm gonna do?
I'm gonna get myself a 1967 Cadillac, El Dorado convertible
Hot pink with whaleskin hub caps and all leather cow interior
And big brown baby seal eyes for headlights, yeah
And I'm gonna drive around in that baby at 115 mph

Getting one mile per gallon, sucking down quarter pounder
Cheese burgers from McDonald's in the old fashioned
Non-biodegradable Styrofoam containers
And when I'm done sucking down those grease ball burgers

I'm gonna wipe my mouth with the American flag
And then I'm gonna toss the Styrofoam container right out the side
And there ain't a goddamned thing anybody can do about it
You know why? Because we got the bombs, that's why

Two words, nuclear fucking weapons, okay?
Russia, Germany, Romania
They can have all the democracy they want
They can have a big democracy cake walk
Right through the middle of Tienanmen square

And it won't make a lick of difference
Because we've got the bombs, okay? John Wayne's not dead
He's frozen and as soon as we find the cure for cancer
We're gonna thaw out the duke and he's gonna be pretty pissed off
You know why? Have you ever taken a cold shower?

Well multiple that by 15 million times
That's how pissed off the Duke's gonna be
I'm gonna get the Duke and John Cassavetes

And Lee Marvin
And Sam Peckinpah
And a case of whiskey and drive down to Texas
(Hey, you know you really are an asshole)
Why don't you just shut-up and sing the song pal

I'm an asshole
(He's an asshole, what an asshole)
I'm an asshole
(He's the world's biggest asshole)

A S S H O L E, everybody

Arf arf arf arf arf arf arf
Fung achng tum a fung tum a fling chum
Ooh, ooh

I'm an asshole and proud of it


George Clooney vs. Steve Wynn in a title elimination bout for the World Asshole championship

The Unconventional Gazette
April 25, 2014

Here is HBO’s rebroadcast of the Clooney-Wynn bout held two weeks ago at the Encore Hotel in Las Vegas:

JIM LAMPLEY: We’re just about set for this important title elimination bout for the World Asshole championship currently held by President Obama. Let’s turn the microphone over to ring announcer Michael Buffer.

BUFFER: Good evening ladies and gentlemen. Welcome to ringside at the Encore’s Botero restaurant here in fabulous Las Vegas. Tonight’s fight will determine who faces World Asshole Champion Barack Obama. Now let’s get ready to rumble.

In the right corner, wearing red trunks, we have hotel-casino magnate Steve Wynn coming in at 72 years. In the left corner, wearing pink trunks, we have two-time Oscar winner George Cooney coming in at 52 years. Here is the referee with his instructions.

REFEREE: Alright guys, let’s have a good clean fight. No low blows. Points will be taken away from you for using the ‘F’ word. Now let’s have at it!

CLOONEY: The president’s Affordable Care Act is the greatest innovation since sliced bread.

WYNN: Obamacare is an unmitigated disaster.

CLOONEY: You don’t like the Affordable Care Act because you don’t like my longtime friend, President Obama.

WYNN: Your friend is an asshole!

CLOONEY: You’re an asshole! I don’t have to listen to this fucking stuff.

REFEREE: Clooney, I’m penalizing you a point for using the ‘F’ word.

CLOONEY: I’m outta here! (Leaves in a huff.)

BUFFER: Ladies and gentlemen, here is the decision of the judges. This bout is declared a no contest.

LAMPLEY: Max Kellerman is in the ring. Let’s see if he can get a few words from Steve Wynn.

KELLERMAN: Steve over here … Steve, Are you disappointed in what just happened?

WYNN: No, not really. I think my discussion about the Affordable Care Act was the straw that broke the camel’s back. When he’s drinking, he considers himself a close personal buddy of the president. Everybody who’s in the casino business knows to take actors with a grain of salt.

KELLERMAN: Thanks Steve … Jim, this wasn’t much of a fight. I don’t think President Obama has to worry about losing his World Asshole championship to either of these two contenders.

LAMPLEY: I think you’re right Max. Well, that just about wraps it up. For HBO and Max Kellerman, I’m Jim Lampley. Good night from Las Vegas.


Harris County will capture feral hogs, take them to a meat processor, and have the finished product delivered to the Houston Food Bank.

Feral hogs, less of a nuisance when they're on the table?

By Dianna Wray

Houston Press Hair Balls
April 24, 2014

A hog is a hog but a feral hog is widely held to be a pain in the ass. Over half the estimated 2 million to 6 million feral hogs in the United States reside in Texas and they do about $400 milllion worth of damage on an annual basis, according to The Smithsonian.

All of this means that feral hogs are not smiled upon in the Lone Star State. Houston is no exception to what the hogs have done.

Usually the hogs are just killed -- with a bullet, a knife or a good thwack from a very tough pickup truck, whatever works. However, in Houston they're taking a different approach.

Where some would look at a massive feral hog and see a large nasty thing that needs to be destroyed, the Harris County Commissioners have taken a longer view, according to KTRK. The 8,000 to 10,000 hogs believed to be roaming the parks will be killed, of course, but the commissioners aren't going to let the hogs simply be tossed aside.

Instead, the hogs are going to be used to feed the hungry in Houston. The commissioners signed off on the purchase of four mobile pens to capture the hogs. The animals will then be taken to J and J Processing in Brookshire where they'll be inspected, slaughtered and packaged. Then the meat will be delivered to the Houston Food Bank. Yup. That's not a punchline. It's really going to happen.

Since the hogs will be processed just like any other edible animal, the meat should be held to the standards that ensure it doesn't have worms or weird diseases. Some may be inclined to get all critical about giving wild hogs to the hungry, but it's actually pretty tasty meet, assuming you like gamey vittles. What's great is that the hogs --- these guys get to be pretty massive, so we're talking about a lot of meat --- don't completely go to waste and the Houston Food Bank gets tons of fresh pork.

We've eaten feral hog before and it's not bad tasting as wild game goes. This doesn't sound like a bad deal. However, County Commissioner Steve Radack called this move a gift from God, according to KTRK. His serious take on the matter is appreciated, though we're pretty sure the hogs would not view this whole setup in such a holy light.


Three Pennsylvania youths, two 15 and one 16, killed Amish family’s pet donkey

Instead of being released to their parents, the three teen scumbags should have remained in custody as their sorry ass deeds show them to be a clear and present danger to public safety. Besides, releasing them to parents who did a lousy job of raising their kids is the last thing I would do.

by Nikki Krize

April 24, 2014

CLINTON TOWNSHIP, PA — Three teenaged boys are accused of shooting a pet donkey on the farm of an Amish family in Lycoming County.

The boys were charged Thursday, about a week after the donkey was killed.

The donkey’s owners are devastated. They said “Eeyore” was their family pet. Their children would take turns riding him and all the neighborhood children pet him on their way to school.

According to state police, three teenagers shot Eeyore six times, last week killing the donkey.

Amos Yoder and his family live on the farm near Montgomery. The Amish family has a lot of animals, but they said that Eeyore the donkey was their children’s pet.

The donkey was a 6-year-old Jerusalem miniature donkey.

On Thursday three teenagers from Montgomery admitted to the crime and were charged with cruelty to animals and possession of a firearm by a minor. Two of the boys are 15, and one is 16.

According to investigators, the teens used a gun similar to a .22 caliber Crickett with a scope.

Each boy admitted to shooting the family pet six times until it died.

The teens also admitted to shooting several deer and smashing three mailboxes with a baseball bat.

The teenagers were released into the custody of their parents and are back in class at Montgomery Area High School.

Investigators said additional charges will be filed against the boys by the Pennsylvania Game Commission.

As for the Yoder family, Mrs. Yoder said her children are heartbroken, but they want to get another donkey. She said the kids want to name that donkey Eeyore as well.


Drunken NYPD detective busted for DWI after accidentally shooting his partner in the wrist while on a robbery investigation

I’ve always believed that when on-duty officers take a lunch or dinner break it is OK for them to have a beer with their food. The only downside to that is odor of an alcoholic beverage on their breaths which may cause some people to think they’re drunk. In the NYPD case, it is obvious the two detectives had way more than just one beer or whatever alcoholic drink they consumed.

Detective Jay Poggi, a 31-year veteran, was charged with DWI after the shooting early Thursday and then driving his wounded partner, who was hit in the wrist, to Jamaica Hospital in Queens

By Eli Rosenberg, Thomas Tracy and Rocco Parascandola

New York Daily News
April 24, 2014

A veteran NYPD detective was charged with driving while intoxicated after he accidentally shot his partner in the wrist during a game of drunken firearms show-and-tell early Thursday, cop sources said.

Detective Jay Poggi, a 31-year veteran, and his partner, Matthew Sullivan, had signed out of the 75th Precinct stationhouse in East New York, Brooklyn, saying they were headed to Far Rockaway on a robbery investigation, the sources said. During their travels, they went to a restaurant and a second establishment that serves alcohol, according to sources.

They left their second stop, in Howard Beach, Queens, between 1:30 a.m. and 1:50 a.m. — Poggi’s shift ended at 1 a.m., sources said. The duo got into their unmarked car, with the liquored-up Poggi at the wheel, and while the car was still parked, Poggi decided to show Sullivan the hammer on his gun, an old Smith & Wesson .38-caliber revolver, according to sources and prosecutors.

The gun suddenly discharged, sending a round into Sullivan’s right wrist, breaking a bone.

Poggi, 58, drove his wounded partner to Jamaica Hospital, where Sullivan, a 12-year veteran, underwent surgery. A police lieutenant called to the hospital noticed that Poggi — who had said he was the driver — had bloodshot eyes and boozy breath, according to a criminal complaint.

At 3:15 a.m., a field sobriety test was administered — required by the NYPD in cases where cops fire their weapons. It showed Poggi had a blood-alcohol content of 0.113, well above the legal driving limit of 0.08, Assistant District Attorney James Liander said at Poggi’s arraignment.

A judge released Poggi without bail.

Sullivan, who was scheduled to be on duty until 8 a.m. Thursday, was in stable condition after surgery.

The shooting — first reported on — is being probed by the Queens district attorney’s office and the NYPD Internal Affairs Bureau. Investigators believe the partners worked on the robbery case, then left the Rockaways, sources said.

Poggi, a first-grade detective who was weeks away from retiring, according to one source, could now be forced to retire or face departmental charges. Neither he nor his lawyer could be reached for comment.


Rhode Island man attempts two stickups with a potato

This schmoe is in serious need of some immediate and prolonged downtime at Babbling Brook Farm.

Talk about a half-baked crime

By Dan McGowan

April 22, 2014

PROVIDENCE, R.I. -- Providence police say a man carrying a potato disguised as a gun unsuccessfully attempted to rob a convenience store and a dry-cleaners in the city’s Charles neighborhood Monday afternoon.

The first report came around 2 p.m. when police reported to Branch Avenue convenience store where the store’s manager said he chased the suspect off with a baseball bat after he shouted “give me the money” to the cashier, according to a police report obtained by

The suspect was described as a white or light-skinned Hispanic male and was about 5’7” tall. He was wearing a black hooded sweatshirt and blue jeans.

Minutes later, police reported to a Charles Street dry-cleaners where a female clerk said a man fitting the same description and carrying a potato yelled “I need the money.”

The clerk handed him a counterfeit $20 bill from a decoy cash register before he walked off.

She described the suspect as being in his twenties with white lips. She said he was of average height and a thin build.

Both locations had surveillance systems, but no arrests have been made.

Friday, April 25, 2014


During the months of July, August and September, 36 Motel 6 units across the state will house prison inmates susceptible to heat related illnesses

By Adolf der Schweinehund

The Unconventional Gazette
April 24, 2014

In a joint news conference held Wednesday at the Texas Department of Criminal Justice (TDCJ) headquarters in Huntsville, Motel 6 CEO Jim Amorosia, TDCJ Executive Director Brad Livingston and State Senator John Whitmire announced a historic agreement to house those prison inmates most susceptible to heat related illnesses in 36 Motel 6 units during the months of July, August and September. The motels will be spread across Texas and be near many of the state’s prison units.

Sen. Whitmire, longtime chairman of the Texas Senate Criminal Justice Committee, said that after reading the 40 page report by the University of Texas Law School’s Human Rights Clinic, he felt something had to be done to head off lawsuits charging the state with operating prisons that are so hot in the summer as to violate the Eighth Amendment protection against cruel and unusual punishment and with violating international human rights standards.

“We do not have the funds to air condition our prions and in many of our units we will not be able to limit cell temperatures to 85 degrees,” said Whitmire. “So I got my good friends Brad and Jim together and they found a way to address the concerns of human rights groups. Non-violent offenders who are susceptible to heat related illnesses because of age or health problems will be housed in air conditioned Motel 6 units.”

Jim Amorosia said that he and Livingston picked out 36 Motel 6 locations that are situated near major prison centers across the state. “Even though the state will pay us less than what we would bring in from our motel guests,” said the Motel 6 CEO, “I felt it was my civic duty to make our motels available to TDCJ during the hottest summer months. Since only non-violent inmates who are elderly or in poor health will be housed, we do not anticipate making any renovations to our units.”

Director Livingston said that temporary security fences and floodlights would be erected around the grounds of the motels. “We have picked 36 locations around the state that are near our major prison centers,” said Livingston. “The motels will be staffed by correctional officers. Telephones will be removed from all rooms. Inmates will be required to do their own housekeeping. TDCJ will set up kitchens at nearby facilities and meals will be trucked over to the motels. All visitors will be thoroughly searched for contraband and any cellphones in their possession will be confiscated. And all visits will be carefully monitored.”

This reporter asked Livingston how they would handle any disciplinary problems and possible escapes. “That’s easy Mr. Schweinehund,” replied Livingston. “Any inmate who violates the rules we will establish, will be shipped forthwith back to a regular prison unit. And considering the comfortable living accommodations at the motels and the security measures we will have in place, we do not anticipate that escapes will be much of a problem.”

“By the end of May we will be announcing the selected locations,” said Amorosia. “I want to apologize to any of our guests who may be inconvenienced at those locations during the months of July, August and September. I am sorry, but we will not leave the light on for you during that time. But let me assure you that the light will be back on at all other times and you will find our accommodations to be as good if not better than before.”

Sen. Whitmire said, “On behalf of Governor Perry and this great state of Texas, I want to thank Jim Amorosia, the Motel 6 Board of Directors and all of the motel officials involved in carrying out this historic agreement. The Lone Star State has been a trend setter in criminal justice reforms and this historic partnership with Motel 6 is just one more example of those trend setting reforms.”

The Unconventional Gazette contacted Ariel Dulitzky, director of the Human Rights Clinic at the UT Law School and asked him to comment on the partnership between TDCJ and Motel 6. “We are not impressed,” said Dulitzky. “The overwhelming majority of Texas prison inmates will still be broiling in heat conditions that are dangerous, unconstitutional and violate international human rights accords. This agreement is nothing more than a band aid on a festering wound. If this is the state’s answer to our report, we will take legal steps to stop Texas from violating the human rights of its prison inmates.”


The Supreme Court rules that an anonymous tip gives cops the right to stop and search a vehicle

What is unusual in this case is that conservative Justice Antonin Scalia voted with the liberal justices while liberal Justice Stephen Breyer joined with the conservative ones.

The U.S. Supreme Court upheld the authority of police officers to stop cars and question their drivers based on anonymous tips to hotlines

By David G. Savage

Los Angeles Times
April 22, 2014

WASHINGTON — The Supreme Court on Tuesday upheld the authority of police officers to stop cars and question drivers based on anonymous tips to hotlines.

In a 5-4 decision, the justices ruled that such stops do not amount to an unreasonable search or seizure, even if the arresting officer did not observe the vehicle speeding or swerving.

The decision affirms a ruling of the California courts.

The case began in August 2008 when a 911 dispatch team in Mendocino County received a midafternoon report that a pickup truck had forced another vehicle off the road. Though the caller did not give his or her name, the report included a detailed description of the truck, including the license plate number.

Responding to the dispatch, an officer saw a truck that fit the description. After stopping it, he found 30 pounds of marijuana in the truck bed. Two men, Lorenzo Navarette and Jose Navarette, were arrested and later convicted of trafficking marijuana.

They appealed and argued that the stop and search violated their rights under the 4th Amendment.

In the past, the court had said that police officers could not rely on an anonymous tip to stop and search a pedestrian. The court worried that anonymous callers could unfairly target people for embarrassing searches.

But in Tuesday’s decision, the court majority agreed that police have “reasonable suspicion” to stop a vehicle if they receive a report that it was speeding, swerving or, in this instance, driving another car off the road.

The case split the court along the usual ideological lines, with two significant switches. Justice Stephen G. Breyer joined the opinion written by Justice Clarence Thomas to form the majority, while Justice Antonin Scalia dissented.

The same lineup last summer decided an important case about DNA testing of arrestees, with Breyer in the majority and Scalia in dissent.

The case was Navarette vs. California.


The Texas governor sticks it in the eyes of NY and California, claiming they’re on a downward spiral because of 'overtaxation, overregulation and overlitigation.'

By Wanda Carruthers

April 25, 2014

Texas Republican Governor Rick Perry said he would have emphasized the "upward trajectory" of business growth in the Lone Star State in a debate over business policies with New York Democrat Governor Andrew Cuomo.

Perry won't have that opportunity because Cuomo on Thursday declined his invitation to debate while the Texas Republican was in New York to recruit business. Perry told Fox News' "Happening Now" he would have highlighted the policies that have been bringing business to Texas over the past 10 years.

"Wealth is leaving states like California and New York. They're migrating to other states," Perry said Thursday.

"I think that is very hard to argue that they are not coming (to New York) because of any other reason than they are in search of freedom. Freedom from overtaxation, overregulation, overlitigation, skilled workforce," he said.

Perry explained states needed to be free from Washington's "one-size-fits-all mentality." Boasting an almost 30 percent increase in jobs in his state over the last decade, he credited tax and regulatory policies, the legal system, and "accountable public schools."

"People in Texas know that this state's on an upward trajectory," he said. "California and New York, I would suggest to you, their trajectory is in a downward way."

Thursday, April 24, 2014


The ladies Vag-Stash gun holster is not recommended for a fast draw

On Monday, Kingsport, Tennessee police arrested Dallas Archer, 19, for driving with a suspended license. As Archer was being booked into jail, a female officer searching the young lady became aware of an “unknown object” in her crotch.

A more intrusive search in the Kingsport police station’s bathroom revealed that Miss Archer had concealed a loaded five-shot North American Arms .22 Long Rifle Mini-Revolver inside her vagina. The vag-stashed gun was four inches long.

For carrying a loaded gun in her personal concealed carry holster, Archer was charged with gun possession and introducing contraband into a penal facility. She was released from jail on $6,000 bail.

The gun happened to have been stolen last year from John Souther, a 70-year-old retired car salesman. Souther would like to get “the little fellow” back, but only after it gets “a bath in bleach.”

WARNING: Not only do we not recommend the ladies Vag-Stash gun holster for a fast draw, but we must warn that a premature discharge of the gun while withdrawing it from the holster could result in irreparable damage to the genitals.


SCOTUS denies yet another appeal on secret compounding pharmacies and Oklahoma’s governor tries to circumvent her state’s Supreme Court ruling on that issue

William Rousan’s attorneys tried desperately to stop his Missouri execution by appealing to the Supreme Court on grounds that the state was planning to use "compounded pentobarbital prepared by an unknown person in an unknown manner, without any assurance by an accredited laboratory that the substance is what the state purports it to be."

On September 21, 1993, Rousan, his 16-year-old son Brent and the elder Rousan’s brother Robert murdered Charles Lewis, 67, and his wife Gracie, 62, at their farm near Bonne Terre. The murders were orchestrated by William who wanted to steal some of the Lewis’ cattle. Brent ambushed Lewis while he was on a riding lawnmower and shot him six times. Mrs. Lewis, who had been on the phone with her daughter, stepped outside after hearing the gunfire and was shot several times by Brent. She managed to get back in the house, but William dragged her back outside and told his son to “Finish her off.” Brent than shot her in the side of the head.

Brent was sentenced to life in prison without the possibility of parole. Robert cooperated with the prosecution and pled guilty to second degree murder. He was released from prison in 2001 after serving only seven years. William was sentenced to death for being the mastermind behind the brutal killings. His execution was scheduled for 12:01 a.m. Wedneday.

When Missouri refused to reveal the name of the compounding pharmacy that supplied the lethal drug, Rousan’s attorneys made their last minute appeal to SCOTUS. The court turned down that appeal and Rousan was put to sleep like a baby as scheduled.

In Oklahoma, the state’s Supreme Court on Monday halted Tuesday’s scheduled execution of Clayton Lockett and that of Charles Warner, scheduled for April 29, ruling that they had the right to challenge the secrecy by which the state obtained its execution drugs. Gov. Mary Fallin is trying to circumvent the court’s ruling by issuing an executive order compelling the authorities to execute both Lockett and Warner on April 29.

Kudos to Gov. Fallin. Stay tuned to see how her executive order plays out. And kudos to SCOTUS for refusing to fall for that phony baloney about the condemned being entitled to know the source of execution drugs. You would think that after several denials of such appeals, attorneys for the condemned would stop beating that dead horse.



More and more pranksters are calling the cops to report SWAT operation-type crimes at the homes of unsuspecting people. Those operations are not only costly, but they are dangerous to both cops and occupants of the homes targeted.

The prank is known as swatting. In this instance, 70 cops, some with guns drawn, responded to the hoax call which is estimated to have cost the taxpayers around $100,000.

Police who arrived with a SWAT team at a Long Island house found out an ‘emergency call’ was a prank by a sore loser involved in the online video game Call of Duty

By Kenneth Garger, Bruce Golding and Natalie O'Neill

New York Post
April 22, 2014

Long Island police dispatched helicopters, emergency vehicles and an army of cops to a home where someone called in a bloody rampage on Tuesday.

They arrived with guns drawn and ready for war — only to find out the call to cops was an act of revenge by a gamer whom the teen who lives inside had just beaten in an online Call of Duty battle.

The prank caller told police over Skype that he was Rafael Castillo, 17, of Long Beach — and that “I just killed my mother and I might shoot more people,” cops said.

But Castillo was only using virtual firearms in the online video game.

“Some guy threatened to Swat him,” Castillo’s brother told The Post. “He was pissed that he had lost.”

The disgruntled gamer had just been eliminated by Castillo and gave police the teen’s home address in a dangerous game called “Swatting,” and the authorities went into full emergency mode.

In the two-hour standoff, authorities scrambled choppers over the house and rushed in more than 60 officers with weapons drawn — including elite members of Nassau County’s special operations unit.

Fire trucks also sped to the home on Laurelton Boulevard near West Fulton Street.

When cops got to the home, Castillo’s mother was in the kitchen and Rafael’s brother arrived home from lunch.

“I thought there was a fire at my house. I ran up and saw my mom running out, I didn’t know what was going on,” said the brother, Jose, 21.

“Then one of the police officers said somebody called and said that the mother and brother of somebody in this house was killed. I said, ‘How is that possible if she’s right there and I’m right here?’”

Cops tried for 20 minutes to call Rafael and get him to come out, but he had headphones on and was still glued to his video game console.

“He didn’t realize anything was going on, he couldn’t hear anything,” his brother said. “I told him that there’s a bunch of cops outside that are looking for you.”

He eventually came outside and the emergency services cops rushed in to make sure there was no reality to the phony call.

“I right away had an idea what it was, because I’ve seen [pranks] on the news,” said Jose Castillo.

Rafael, known as Rafi, is a junior at Long Beach High School and was at home playing video games because it was spring break.

The vicious gamer likely traced Castillo’s IP address online to find out where he lives, police sources said.

“It was probably just an evil little kid,” one officer said.

“We went and checked out the place and there was nothing there … It sucked up a lot of resources, caused traffic problems. It turned out to be a hoax,” the cop added.

Cops were trying to track down the hoaxer by tracing his electronic footprints, police sources said.

Long Beach Police Commissioner Michael Tangney said it’s just the latest example of the “Swatting” game.

“In this … bizarre world of Swatting, you get points for the helicopter, for the police cars, for the SWAT team, for the type of entry,” he told CBS. “It’s very sophisticated. Unfortunately, it’s very dangerous.”


Cops bust drug ring at several prestigious Philadelphia area prep schools

It seems as though the rich never have enough money. So if one is enrolled in a prestigious prep school, he might as well earn some serious geld in his spare time.

Dealers allegedly sold drugs in five Main Line high schools and three area colleges

By Vince Lattanzio

NBC 10
April 23, 2014

The latest "sub-dealer" in the Main Line drug ring was brought into custody today. Lafayette College student Christian Euler turned himself into Lower Merion police and is in jail following an afternoon arraignment.

Two prep school graduates who prosecutors say had their sights set on running the drug trade on suburban Philadelphia's Main Line were arrested yesterday along with so-called "sub-dealers" for allegedly selling illicit substances in high schools and colleges.

Montgomery County District Attorney Risa Ferman announced on Monday the arrests of Neil Scott and Timothy Brooks and detailed their alleged operation, called the "Main Line Take Over Project."

Scott, 25, and Brooks, 18, employed "sub-dealers" at five Main Line high schools and three area colleges who would sell marijuana, hash oil, cocaine and MDMA, a drug commonly known as Ecstasy, Ferman said. Authorities confiscated drugs, cash and guns in a sweep related to the operation, which officials said had been running for the past couple of months, officials said.

“This was not a game. These people were in business. They were in business to make money, and they were going to do whatever they needed to do so that no one threatened their business," Ferman said.

The schools allegedly involved were the private Haverford School and public high schools Lower Merion High School and Harriton High School in Lower Merion Township, Conestoga High School in Tredyffrin Twp. and Radnor High School in Radnor, as well as Gettysburg, Lafayette and Haverford colleges.

Ferman said both men, who are graduates of the prestigious all-boys preparatory school the Haverford School, worked together to "create a [drug] monopoly to high school students in the area."

Both men played lacrosse at the swanky Montgomery County private school and coached youth sports leagues, according to Ferman. The DA said Brooks and Scott exploited those relationships to help grow the criminal enterprise.

According to a 100-page criminal complaint obtained by, Scott received bulk shipments of marijuana from California to his apartment in Haverford, Pa. Drugs would also be sent to his parent's home in Paoli and Brooks' home in Villanova, according to the complaint.

Authorities said Scott worked, at one time, at a legal marijuana dispensary in California and used those connections to garner his supply.

Through text messages obtained during the investigation, prosecutors said they learned Scott and Brooks ran the ring like a legitimate business. Scott allegedly coached Brooks, who would in turn supervise the "sub-dealers" inside the high schools.

“The high school sub-dealers were encouraged to develop their business so that they could sell at least one pound of marijuana each week,” Ferman said. "Brooks instructed the dealers to make sure that there was never a drought."

John Nagl, headmaster for The Haverford School, said school officials were notified about an on-going investigation several weeks ago, but were asked not to interfere.

"We focus on developing boys with good character, despite our best efforts, sometimes boys make bad choices," he said. "This was destructive and horrible. And we are deeply saddened."

Nagle said the school, which teaches 1,000 boys in a lower, middle and upper school, does not comment on current or former students. He said he did not know how many students may have purchased drugs through the ring.

“The school is cooperating with the law enforcement investigation," he said.

Spokespersons for the Lower Merion, Radnor and Tredyffrin/Easttown school districts said officials have been made aware of the allegations and that the safety of students is most important. All said they were unaware of the investigation, but will cooperate if asked.

Gettysburg College is conducting an internal investigation, a spokesman for that college said. also reached out to the other schools involved in the case, but so far we have not heard back.

Ferman said investigators learned about the "Main Line Take Over Project" through confidential informants and conducted a one-day round-up in February. In that operation, prosecutors said they confiscated 8 lbs. of marijuana, 3 grams of hash oil, 23 grams of cocaine, 11 grams of Ecstasy, $11,000 in cash, a loaded handgun, an AR-15 assault rifle and AR-15 style rifle. Most of the contraband came from Scott's Haverford apartment, authorities said.

In addition to Scott and Brooks, seven alleged "sub-dealers" were also charged. They are: Daniel McGrath, 18, a student at The Haverford School; John Rosemann, 20, a student at Lafayette College; Christian Euler, 23, a graduate of The Haverford School and student at Lafayette College; Garrett Johnson, 18, a student at Haverford College; Reid Cohen, 18, a Haverford College student; Willow Orr, 22; Domenic Curcio, 29.

Two juveniles, a 17-year-old Radnor High School student and 17-year-old Lower Merion High School student, have also been petitioned by the DA's office.

Scott, who is being held on $1 million bail, covered his face and shouted expletives at reporters attempting to get comment following his arraignment on Monday afternoon. His attorney declined comment saying he had just gotten the case.

Brook's attorney said the teen "lost his way" and is remorseful. His parents posted the $25,000 bail to release him from jail.


Gang that killed victim in his car, shoots him again well after his death and then shoots up his casket while it was being lowered in the grave

What’s amusing to me is that the cops waited until the next day to make sure the coast was clear before approaching the car with the victim still inside to make a cursory investigation of the shooting.

From Borderland Beat:

By Javier Valdez Cardenas

April 22, 2014

He’d pissed them off and he owed them. The thing is that when push came to shove in the end they charged everybody. And since then they hadn’t stopped charging. It all began with his end: his multiplied, extended, interminable death, all beginning with no epilogue: an annual party held among the graves.

They tricked him into coming. He arrived in jeans, Stetson, and gun bulging at his front, Chalino Sánchez style. He said a half hello to some guys along the way, steering himself towards the people he had come to see.

But before he arrived they peppered his body with bullets and left it, lying there, smoldering, reddened.
His corpse slumped on the steering wheel. A mix of blood and glass, bits of organic matter strewn around. His killers still got down from their vehicle, checking the corpse. Nothing inside the vehicle was intact. To make sure, they blasted him once with a forty-five to the head, then three more times.

The police showed up a day later, when agents confirmed nobody else was around. They did some investigating, took notes and ordered the corpse carried to the funeral parlor. Then in his relatives’ house, flanked by thick, burning candles, cries punctuated the prayers and people threw themselves to the ground: armed, hooden men got to the coffin, readied their chambers, and blasted him again.

Kids wailed. So did relatives and neighbors. They asked why shoot him again if he was already dead.

Hysteria and fear.

Those already at the funeral home didn’t return and those who were thinking of going thought better of it. Next day, they went to the cemetery. Few cars in a cavalcade led by a white hearse.

They were lowering the body. Pulleys, rope, the undertakers four forearms and the ritual lowering. The ropes and pulleys whined. From a distance the dust cloud warned of another approaching cortege but this time of black trucks at high-speed. They got to the graveyard and parked close. Again people scattered, shouting, loose muscles straining and skin trembling.

Two men got out of the back of one of the trucks. They aimed and fired at the half-lowered coffin. Bullets embedded in the casket and the graveside. The rite of squaring off accounts repeated each and every year: armed men went to the cemetery to shoot the grave up, upholding the grisly celebration of multiplying the murder, burnishing the flame of the first execution.

Curious visitors to the dead man’s tomb asked why they kept killing him on every anniversary of his death?:

"They just didn’t want the guy to rest in peace."

Wednesday, April 23, 2014


Human rights group says Texas prisons are so hot during summers that ‘convicts and guards are broiling in conditions that are dangerous, unconstitutional and violate international human rights accords’

A story by in Mike Ward and Lauren McGaughy in Tuesday’s Houston Chronicle reports that the Human Rights Clinic at the University of Texas Law School has released a 40 page report highly critical of the summer heat conditions in Texas prisons. The group wants all 109 Texas state prisons air conditioned and wants the corrections system to take immediate steps to make sure that inside temperatures this summer do not exceed 85 degrees.

The correctional officers union has applauded the Human Rights Clinic report. But Brad Livingston, Executive Director of the Texas Department of Criminal Justice (TDCJ), is defending the current heat situation. Livingston says: "We have significant protocols in place governing the movement of offenders early in the day for work assignments, we supply ice water and have fans and other equipment to increase air movement. We believe the protocols are appropriate."

However, the law school clinic notes that the Center for Disease Control has "determined these measures to be ineffective in preventing heat-related injuries in very hot and humid conditions, such as those present in TDCJ facilities." The clinic report states:

"Despite these findings, TDCJ facilities largely do not provide air conditioning to the living areas of the general inmate population, many of whom are serving time for non-violent offenses. At the same time, the TDCJ has spent money on air conditioning for its warden offices and for its armories ... (and) has not promulgated any maximum temperature policies for inmate housing, even though the Texas Commission on Jail Standards and numerous other state departments of corrections across the country have done so."

"Continuing to disregard the plight of TDCJ inmates subject to extreme heat is not an option. [That] would be in violation of international human rights standards and the requirements of the Eighth Amendment if it were to do so."

Since 1998, heat related illnesses have resulted in 19 Texas inmate deaths. Six lawsuits have been filed against the prison system over heat related deaths of inmates. One of those lawsuits alleges a cell temperature reached 149 degrees. The Chronicle story says that the heat repeatedly exceeds 115 degrees.

Now let’s get real here. Air condition all 109 Texas prisons? That would be cost prohibitive. And even if it were not, it would take years to complete the job. Nor is Texas going to be able to meet the 85 degree limit agreed to by other states as the result of lawsuits. Those other states do not have 109 prisons to contend with.

Heat related deaths in prisons are no different than heat related deaths among construction workers. The key to preventing those deaths in prison is to provide the inmates with plenty of drinking water and to restrict any strenuous activities during the hottest part of the day.

TDCJ, however, may not have its priorities in the right place. The department was criticized last year for spending $750,000 to build six air conditioned pig barns with ‘water misters that could lower summertime temperatures by up to 20 degrees and heaters in the winter - so the hogs would be comfortable.’ What we have here is pigs before convicts and correctional officers.


The Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting addled the brain of Retired Supreme Court Justice John Paul Stevens so much that his proposals on gun control and the death penalty are downright anti-Texan, if not anti-American

I criticized some of my friends for calling Justice Stevens anti-American because he wanted to add five words to the Second Amendment - “The right of the people to keep and bear arms, when serving in the militia, shall not be infringed” – which would allow Congress to ban private gun ownership in this country. Stevens says he was so traumatized by the shooting deaths of those 20 little children that he had to call for gun controls along the lines of those in European countries where private gun ownership is all but prohibited and where the few guns allowed for hunting must be registered with the government.

Reports about his new book, Six Amendments: How and Why We Should Change the Constitution, reveal that Stevens not only wants to change the Constitution so that it would become possible for the states or the federal government to ban the private ownership of guns, but barring that, he also wants to change the Constitution so that the states would be forced to run background checks on prospective gun buyers. His proposal would overturn the 1997 SCOTUS ruling in Printz vs. United States that states could not be forced to participate in the background check system.

In his book, Stevens also wants to change the Constitution in order to abolish the death penalty. And he wants to change the Constitution so that it would limit the use of guns in self-defense.

Stevens is downright anti-Texan for the changes he wants to make to the Constitution on gun control and the death penalty. And I herewith apologize to the friends I criticized for calling Stevens anti-American. Fellas, please accept my apology!