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Bulb

Patriot Act idea rises in France, and is ridiculed

The arrests came quickly after the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks. There was the Muslim man suspected of making anti-American statements. The Middle Eastern grocer, whose shop, a tipster said, had more clerks than it needed. Soon hundreds of men, mostly Muslims, were in American jails on immigration charges, suspected of being involved in the attacks.

They were not.

After shootings last week at a satirical newspaper and a kosher market in Paris, France finds itself grappling anew with a question the United States is still confronting: how to fight terrorism while protecting civil liberties. The answer is acute in a country that is sharply critical of American counterterrorism policies, which many see as a fearful overreaction to 9/11. Already in Europe, counterterrorism officials have arrested dozens of people, and France is mulling tough new antiterrorism laws.

Many European countries, and France in particular, already have robust counterterrorism laws, some of which American authorities have studied as possible models. But the terrorist rampage at the Charlie Hebdo newspaper offices and the Hyper Cacher market prompted calls to go even further. Valérie Pécresse, a minister under former President Nicolas Sarkozy, said France needed its own version of the USA Patriot Act, which gave the United States more authority to collect intelligence and pointed America's surveillance apparatus at its citizens.

Politicians and civil rights advocates on both sides of the Atlantic bristled at that suggestion, and at a string of arrests in which French officials used a new antiterrorism law to crack down on what previously would have been considered free speech. One man was sentenced to six months in prison for shouting support for the Charlie Hebdo attackers. Up to 100 others are under investigation for remarks that support or tried to justify terrorism, authorities said.

Dominique de Villepin, the former French prime minister, warned against the urge for "exceptional" measures. "The spiral of suspicion created in the United States by the Patriot Act and the enduring legitimization of torture or illegal detention has today caused that country to lose its moral compass," he wrote in Le Monde, the French newspaper.
Red Flag

Sexualizing children: School forces teen to cover her shoulders at school dance


Gabi Finlayson
A Utah teenager said she was told to wear a coat or shawl over her dress at a school dance because her shoulders were exposed.

Gabi Finlayson said a representative from Lone Peak High School told her as she arrived that she must cover her shoulders, which were exposed by her sleeveless dress, reported KUTV-TV.

The teen said she was embarrassed and didn't want to make a scene, so she went to her car to retrieve a winter coat that she wore during the event.

"Somehow my shoulders are sexualized - like it's my responsibility to make sure the boys' thoughts are not unclean," said Finlayson, whose dress extended from just below her neckline to below her knees.
Sheriff

Proposed Mississippi law allows cops to enter homes, kill your dog, without a warrant

© Unknown
A new bill has been proposed which would allow police officers to enter any home, regardless of whether or not they have a warrant, if there is a pit bull on the property. Even worse, the bill would allow officers to shoot and kill the dog if only a handful of conditions were met. The Huffington Post reported that measure would make Mississippi the only state in history with a policy against a specific dog breed.

House Bill 1261 not only says police may enter homes without warrants, but they could actually kill the animal if they determine the dogs are "not under proper restraint when on the premises of its owner" or if they are not wearing vaccination tags and "attempts to peacefully capture the dog have been made and proven unsuccessful."

Comment: Let's face it, these laws have nothing to do with protecting the public, and everything to do with increasing the legal authority of the local government to enter your home and do whatever they please.

Stop

Passenger head-butts driver, causing commuter chaos and worker strike on Paris subway

paris subway
© Reuters / Charles Platiau
Paris experienced a commuter chaos on Wednesday night, after an outraged passenger attacked a train driver on the RER A regional train line on the outskirts of the French capital.

In the suburb of Torcy, the passenger set off the train alarm system after his hand got stuck in the closing doors, and then head-butted the driver, who had left his cabin to reset the alarm system.
OH.MY.GOD 0_0 Saint Lazare via @_yavin_ #RERA pic.twitter.com/RK0vW0P97W

- Daisy Lorenzi (@D_Lorenzi) January 29, 2015
The passenger then fled, and the train driver had to be taken to hospital with a broken nose, French newspaper Le Parisien reported.
Ici c'est Paris... RER A down... pic.twitter.com/g2iaQHbTLe

- Thierry Debarnot (@ThierryDebarnot) January 29, 2015
Arrow Down

US cops going after kids shoveling snow - they want their cut

Shoveling-Snow
© armstrongeconomics.com
Shoveling-Snow.
Ok - believe it or not, this really shows how the new younger generation of police are anti-society and just insanely pro-government beyond common sense. With cities and municipalities dead broke, confiscating cash from people pretending it is somehow tainted without any proof under Civil Asset Forfeiture was bad enough. Now they are really going over the top. This is not an isolated incident. Towns in the North East are targeting teenagers who traditionally made money during winter shoveling snow.

The police even in Philadelphia are targeting kids as they are in New Jersey. Many towns demand a license with paperwork and fees of $50+ to be paid to shovel snow. These corrupt politicians are hungry for money and any possible piece of loose change they want to grab. Just how far will society allow this type of corruption go before they throw-the-bums-out?

From FATCA to targeting teenagers shoveling snow, these people are destroying everything that held society together. They look upon us as the great unwashed - just scum to be exploited. This is really going way too far.

Comment: See also: Police state stupidity: New Jersey cops shut down teens' snow shoveling business

Black Cat 2

France finally recognize animals as 'living, sentient beings'

© Reuters / Vincent West
It has taken the French parliament more than 200 years to officially recognize animals as "living, sentient beings" rather than "furniture," finally upgrading their embarrassing status that dates back to Napoleonic times.

While amendments to the Civil Code were first approved in November, the National Assembly voted on the motion Wednesday, according to AFP. The Assembly had to give its final word after debate with the Senate over several clauses, including the animals' status.

Until the motion was passed, animals in France, including domestic pets and farm animals, had the same status as a sofa. When the civil code was wrapped up by Napoleon back in 1804, animals were considered as working farm beasts and viewed as an agricultural force designated as goods or furniture.
Bad Guys

Another pastor found guilty of child molestation

Roy Harriger
© WGRZ
Pastor Roy Harriger found guilty of molestation
A New York pastor this week was convicted of molesting his grandchildren just as he had been accused of sexually abusing his own children years before.

Jurors in Orleans County on Monday found 71-year-old pastor Roy Harriger guilty of molesting two of his grandchildren about 12 years ago, WGRZ reported. Harriger had originally been charged with molesting three of his grandchildren.

Another 15 people in three states signed affidavits last year alleging that they had also been molested by Harriger as children. But most of those cases were ruled to be past the statute of limitations.

Comment: According to Dr. Anna Salter, many pedophiles lurk in organizations where they have easy access to vulnerable children. The best protection we may provide is to educate ourselves and our children so as to have a better understanding of how these predators operate and learn how to spot them before it is too late. Knowledge protects!

Predators: Pedophiles, Rapists, and Other Sex Offenders, Who They Are, How They Operate, and How We Can Protect Ourselves and Our Children

SOTT Talk Radio: Predators Among Us - Interview With Dr. Anna Salter

Map

Crossing the bridge from Eurasia to NATOstan

© Sputnik/ Sergey Subbotin
I had no agenda other than to connect the future (the Eurasian Century) with the past (the crumbling European Union dream) via God's favorite abode, the City of Cities; Constantinople, the New Rome. Just a Eurasia pilgrim on the move, absorbing those flows coming from the Balkans and ancient glorious Thrace; from the Black Sea and the Sea of Marmara through the Bosphorus; and from chaotic, teeming peripheries where gleaming towers coexist with miserable huts.

Morning was a question of being immersed, between myth and history, in the thundering silence of centuries of stony sleep. Istanbul should be read as a scroll - beyond methodological cunning and stylistic ornaments. Jean Cocteau wrote that Constantinople was a city born in purple, a city of blood, sunsets and fires. Casanova wrote that as Constantine arrived by the sea, seduced by the sight of Byzantium, he instantly proclaimed, "This is the seat of the empire of the world." So, in style, he left the seat of the old empire, Rome, for good.
Heart - Black

School forces students to undergo strip-search

© WFAA
Eliza Medina, 11, said she was one of the Gustine ISD students forced to pull down her pants for an inspection.
In Gustine, population 457, what happens at the schoolhouse affects nearly everyone. And something happened Monday that is causing a big controversy in this small town.

"I felt uncomfortable, and I didn't want to do it," said 11-year-old Eliza Medina. "I felt like they violated my privacy."

She was one of about two dozen elementary students who were rounded up in the small town 90 miles southwest of Fort Worth.

Eliza's mother, Maria Medina, said boys were taken to one room, girls to another, and they were ordered "to pull down their pants to check them to see if they could find anything."

Eliza's mom explained that educators "have been finding poop on the gym floor." She can imagine the frustration, but said even for feces on the floor you don't partially strip search a group of students to find the culprit.

Comment: The parents have every right to be furious. The school should be sued for invading the privacy of the students. They do not consent to strip-searches just by attending school. The school went way beyond its rights as a center of education. This is the behavior of a prison, not a school.

Eye 1

The murder of cops surges in Venezuela

Venezuelan flag
© AP Photo/Ramon Espinosa
After finishing a routine overnight shift, Venezuelan policeman Edgar Perez was walking home from the bus stop when two armed men pulled up on a motorbike.

Perez, 41, had time to draw his gun and injure one of the attackers in the shootout near his modest home in the town of Ocumare del Tuy outside Caracas, but the other shot him in the head and took his weapon.

The officer died shortly afterwards in a nearby clinic, leaving a widow and three children.

Comment: As Oliver Stone has pointed out, the US plays a large part in destabilizing Venezuela:
They have seen this movie before. In 2002, the Bush administration "provided training, institution building, and other support to individuals and organizations understood to be actively involved in the military coup" that briefly overthrew then-President Hugo Chávez, according to the State Department. After the coup failed, Washington stepped up funding to opposition groups, which has continued to this day.

These leaders respect Maduro and have every reason to believe him when he says he is trying to prevent violence. The government has arrested at least 21 security officers so far. Despite crimes committed by individual security officers, there is no evidence that Maduro's administration has intended to use violence to repress dissent. Since the protests began, most of the deaths associated with them have been at the hands of protesters, not security forces.
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