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Sat, 06 Feb 2016
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10 things they won't tell you about the Flint poisoned water tragedy; But I will

© Brett Carlsen via Getty Images
News of the poisoned water crisis in Flint has reached a wide audience around the world. The basics are now known: The Republican governor, Rick Snyder, nullified the free elections in Flint, deposed the mayor and city council, then appointed his own man to run the city. To save money, they decided to unhook the people of Flint from their fresh water drinking source, Lake Huron, and instead, make the public drink from the toxic Flint River.

When the governor's office discovered just how toxic the water was, they decided to keep quiet about it and covered up the extent of the damage being done to Flint's residents, most notably the lead affecting the children, causing irreversible and permanent brain damage. Citizen activists uncovered these actions, and the governor now faces growing cries to resign or be arrested.

Comment: See also:
  • Why we need to be concerned about lead exposure


Woman with Asperger's who touched millions of lives, gunned down by police

Danielle Jacobs, 24, brought tears to the internet's eyes last year after she posted a video of what she felt like with Asperger's syndrome.

In the video, Jacobs recorded herself during one of her 'meltdowns,' which showed her trying to punch herself, but being comforted by her Rottweiler instead.

"This is what having Asperger's like," she wrote with the video.

Quenelle - Golden

John Pilger speaks passionately (again) on 'Australia Day', aka Invasion Day

© Video Screen shot
John Pilger speaking on Invasion Day 2016
On 26 January 2016, the national holiday in Australia, journalist and activist John Pilger spoke at a rally at Sydney Town Hall on the hidden meaning of 'Survival Day':

Comment: See also:

While white Australians celebrate national holiday, aboriginals mark Invasion Day

John Pilger: Australia's Day for secrets, flags & cowards


Man chokes to death trying to swallow whole cheeseburger in one bite

© Robert Galbraith / Reuters
Welshman Darren Bray, 29, choked to death when he tried to swallow a whole cheeseburger in one bite while drinking at a friend's house.

A Cardiff coroner heard how Bray, a father of three, had been out with his friends when he apparently jokingly tried to swallow the whole burger in October 2015.

"Watch this," he told friends before folding and ramming the 99p meal down his throat, according to one witness.

When it became clear Bray was encountering difficulties, his friend Sam Bisgrove tried to intervene.

Comment: See also: McDonald's Japan founder: Burgers will make us 'taller, white and blonde'


Finland-based Soldiers of Odin: vigilantism and racism

Nazi daggers, SS hats and a hangman's noose: On night patrol with the 'Soldiers of Odin', neo-Nazi led vigilantes vowing to 'keep Europe's women safe from migrant sex attacks'
  • Notorious Finland-based group Soldiers of Odin is at the forefront of a fierce vigilante movement sweeping Europe
  • MailOnline gained exclusive access to the anti-migrant group's patrols and its secretive 'Nazi-themed' headquarters
  • Founded by a self-confessed, violent neo-Nazi, 'Odins' are one of increasing number of anti-migrant groups
  • Vigilantes claim the police can't control migrants by themselves, following spate of sex attacks that shocked Europe
© Roland Hoskins / Daily Mail
Boss: 'Jani', 27, one of three leaders of the Kemi 'division' of the Soldiers of Odin who works in a paper factory by day, says the group does not follow Nazi ideologies but admits there will be a 'war on the streets, and we are ready to fight'
A gang of vigilantes led by a violent neo-Nazi go on night time 'migrant patrols' on the streets of Finland, with some talking of 'ethnic cleansing' in the wake of the country's mounting immigration crisis.

The self-styled 'Soldiers of Odin' march in a mob, wearing bomber jackets with their logo on the back. They have vowed to take direct action to 'protect their wives, girlfriends and children' after a migrant influx to the liberal Scandinavian country.

The gang - which claims to have cells across Europe - says it mobilised after a rise in migrant-related crime over the past 12 months because the Finnish government has 'screwed everything up'.

MailOnline gained exclusive access to the gang's leadership and visited its secretive headquarters - which was packed with Nazi memorabilia and White Supremacist propaganda.

Comment: Does anyone think that these guys are going to help anything? Or is their way of thinking the bigger problem?

It is very worrying that the Police Chief, Seppo Kolehmainen, unlike many in the police force, has actually made statements in support of these kinds of groups. Similarly, Jari Lindström who is the current Minister of Justice and Minister of Labor, has stated that he has not heard that there is a problem with them. This sort of talk gives a positive signal for these kind of hostile groups and opens the country to accept them little by little. Also, the Finnish media has so far not highlighted these clearly fascist aspects of these groups, which makes one curious as to the cause. Is someone trying to set up a "Maidan"-type of atmosphere in Finland?

Extreme right-wing ideologies have been used to the detriment of Finnish society before and so we need to be vigilant against this sort of thing: Untold history of Finland: Fascist origins, Russophobia and today's anti-Muslim hysteria


Landmark case: Pill-mill doctor convicted of murder for over prescribing opioids

© Lucas Jackson / Reuters
A California doctor received 30 years to life in prison after being convicted of the second-degree murder of three of her patients. The patients of Hsiu-Ying "Lisa" Tseng overdosed on narcotics that she overprescribed.

Los Angeles County Deputy District Attorney John Niedermann wrote in court papers that the murder charges against Tseng stemmed from her ignoring warnings from the coroner's office that her patients were dying from her prescriptions.

Tseng was charged in the deaths of Joey Rovero, 21, Steven Ogle, 25, and Vu Nguyen, 28. According to the Los Angeles Times, at least eight of Tseng's patients had died from overdoses in 2008. Among her patients were three convicted drug dealers, two of whom admitted to selling drugs that Tseng prescribed.

The prosecution claims that Tseng received over a dozen phone calls from either law enforcement or the coroner's office, telling her "Your patient has died." Tseng's husband, Gene Tu, testified for the defense that she treated the calls as "just FYI," according to CNN.

Tseng's clinic was allegedly notorious for how easy it was to receive prescriptions. Over the course of three years, Tseng would write over 27,000 prescriptions - 25 a day, according to CBS. Her practice was a busy one, so busy that her appointments allegedly would last just three minutes.

Comment: Deaths from opiate prescriptions are epidemic, yet little has been done so far to counter the forces responsible. The pharmaceutical cartel is primarily responsible through its aggressive marketing of these drugs, yet the industry may now be rewarded for its malfeasance by receiving funding from the government to address the situation.

Cell Phone

Maryland's Attorney General: you consent to surveillance by turning on your phone

Maryland attorney general Brian E Frosh has filed a brief appealing a decision in the case of Kerron Andrews, who was tracked by a Stingray cell-phone surveillance device.

In the brief, Frosh argued that in not turning off his cellphone, Andrews had consented to warrantless government surveillance, because phones' locations can be derived by an examination of phone company records.

Comment: Absurd! Their argument is akin to saying "You left the lights on and windows open in your house therefore you consent to warrantless government searches of your home." Interesting how that since the advent of the Internet and mobile technologies those technologies have been increasingly used to push people towards changing the way they interpret what is an isn't right.


Former astronaut Edgar Mitchell, sixth man to walk on moon dies at age 85

Apollo astronaut Edgar Mitchell posing with the Apollo 14 mission patch in 1971
Former NASA astronaut Edgar Mitchell has died, 45 years to the day since he became the sixth man ever to set foot on the moon. Mitchell piloted the lunar module during the 1971 Apollo 14 mission.

Mitchell died Thursday night at a hospice in West Palm Beach, Florida, after a short illness, his daughter Kimberly said.

Joining NASA in 1966, Mitchell helped design and test the lunar module used in the 1969 Apollo 11 mission. He was on the original crew of the Apollo 13, but was bumped to the next mission after the commander needed more time to prepare. Apollo 13 never made it to the moon, suffering a catastrophic explosion en route; the crew barely managed to return alive.

Comment: UFO cover-ups must end, moonwalker Edgar Mitchell says

Light Saber

Detroit judge blasts 'racist' cop for brutally beating innocent black man (video)

© Screengrab via YouTube/MLive.com Staff
Judge Vonda Evans
In a speech that lasted almost 30 minutes, Judge Vonda Evans of Detroit laid into 47-year-old William Melendez, the former Inkster, Michigan, police officer caught on video beating an unarmed black man in January 2015.

Melendez was sentenced to 13 months to 10 years in prison Tuesday for his role in the attack on Floyd Dent, a 58-year-old black auto worker, that occurred during a late night traffic stop in the struggling Wayne County suburb last winter.

"The one image [from this trial] that stood out to the court was looking at Mr. Dent in his cell, shaking his head in disbelief of what had occurred to him," Evans said in a courtroom video published by local television station WJBK.

"If his conduct was indicative of what he was thinking, I would have thought this: 'What crime did I commit, being a black man in a Cadillac, stopped for a minor traffic offense by a group of racist police officers looking to do a nigger?'"

On Jan. 28, 2015, Melendez and his partner, John Zieleniewski, pulled Dent over for an alleged traffic violation. Upon finding that Dent was driving with a suspended license, the officers dragged him from his vehicle and onto the ground, where Melendez placed him in a chokehold and punched him 16 times in the head. At least eight more Inkster police officers gathered at the scene, none of whom intervened to stop the attack. Dent was charged with resisting arrest and drug possession, the latter due to a baggy of cocaine that he alleged the officers planted on him.

The beating — which left Dent's face and shirt drenched in blood — was captured on a patrol car dashboard camera and went public soon after, prompting a criminal investigation. After his arrest, as he sat in a cell nearby, Dent reportedly had to listen and watch as officers made fun of him and cleaned his blood off their uniforms with disinfectant.

All charges against Dent were eventually dropped, and in May, he settled with the city of Inkster for $1.4 million.

Comment: Judge Evan's complete 25 minutes address is below:


Flint water crisis; Hundreds of inmates given lead poisoned water, first official fired, scandals keep surfacing

© Rebecca Cook / Reuters
A Flint official involved in causing the city's water supply to be contaminated with high levels of lead has been fired, but scandals keep surfacing. An ex-prisoner says he served fellow Genesee County Jail inmates the poisonous stuff for months.

Liane Shekter-Smith was already demoted from her former position as head of the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality's Drinking Water and Municipal Assistance, but on Friday she became the first Flint official to be fired over the water crisis.

Comment: See also:
  • Dogs become latest victim of Flint water crisis
  • Nestle's ties to the Michigan water crisis
  • Health officials blasted at congressional hearing over handling of Flint water crisis