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Canaries in the Coal Mine
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Bullseye

Ft. Lauderdale proposes measure making it illegal for the homeless to have possessions in public

homeless miami
© AP
A homeless man in Miami is interviewed by a researcher
A backpack. Spare clothes. A notebook. Some keepsake photos. Crackers.

Though they may not have a home in which to secure their stuff, homeless people still have possessions like everyone else.

Yet the city of Ft. Lauderdale, Florida is on the cusp of passing a new regulation that would make it illegal for anyone to store their personal things on public property. Specifically, it would empower police to confiscate any personal possessions stored on public property, provided they have given the homeless person 24-hours notice. If the homeless people wish to retrieve their items, they must pay the city "reasonable charges for storage and removal of the items," though that fee is waived if the person is able to demonstrate he or she cannot afford to pay. The city may dispose of any possessions not retrieved within 30 days. One of the driving factors behind the measure, according to the legislation, is the city's "interest in aesthetics."

Last week, the City Commission gave unanimous preliminary approval to the measure, despite overwhelming opposition from local residents who testified.
Alarm Clock

Greeley school parents' fury forces oil and gas driller to back down

greely school
© AAron Ontiveroz, The Denver Post
State regulators and Greeley officials have allowed more than 425 wells inside Greeley, including these near Northridge High School. Mineral Resources has withdrawn its application to drill near Frontier Academy.
An oil and gas industry proposal to drill 19 wells within 900 feet of an elementary school in Greeley ignited such parent fury that company officials on Monday backed down.

Mineral Resources Inc. officials said withdrawing their application to drill by the Frontier Academy school is an example of listening to community concerns.

They made their decision as state regulators are investigating recent fires and explosions at industry storage tanks northeast of Denver - including one last week near a different elementary school.

"We're grateful. Now our children are safe," said Trisha Golding, head of the Frontier Parents' Group, who pressed their case Thursday with Colorado Oil and Gas Conservation Commission director Matt Lepore.

"And we're not going to rest until this city and schools make sure this doesn't happen again behind our school or any other school," Golding said.

The showdown began this month when parents found out about the project. Colorado last year made a rule requiring 1,000-foot buffer zones around schools and hospitals.

But Mineral Resources had proposed drilling 19 to 67 wells as close as 478 feet from the school's playground, 828 feet from the building, before the rule. The COGCC granted initial approval in May 2013.

Last week, an oil storage tank fire in Frederick, about 1,800 feet from Legacy Elementary, put teachers and students on orders to "shelter in place."

Comment: And, who decides what a safe distance is, and how is that determined?

New study links fracking to birth defects in heavily drilled Colorado

Robot

Robocop to start patrolling streets by 2014, perform unwarranted searches



As we reported earlier, a Silicon Valley company called Knightscope has developed a prototype robot that has all the capabilities that Hollywood has projected to be available by 2050. William Santana Li, CEO of Knightscope, says the robot is, "everything that's great about Silicon Valley, its robotics, big data, predictive analytics, its sensors," and will be patrolling streets in 2014.

The robot is known as the Knightscope 5 (K5). The Knightscope 5 was designed to have a more friendly look, similar to R2D2, so it is easier to interact with according to Knightscope. The Knightscope 5 will be equipped with state-of-the-art technology that will cross-reference your appearance with social media networks and use analytical data to "predict future crimes." K5 is also loaded with a 360 degree 3d mapping system, thermal imaging, facial recognition and a license plate recognition system that collects 300 license plates a minute.
Attention

New Jersey parents required to swipe driver's license to enter school; soon a background check

License Swipe
© Police State USA
Driver’s license swipe.
Denville - Parents in a New Jersey school district have been notified that visits inside their children's school will require now an electronic scan of their drivers' licenses - and soon, a full background check.

A letter dated April 21, 2014, explains the new security measures, as decided by the Denville Township Board of Education. In order to keep "students and faculty safe," the school wishes to record digital information from the visitors' state-issued ID cards upon each visit beyond the main office.

The letter states that each swipe will log the owner's personal data and will generate a visitor badge.

Read the letter below:
Attention

Legal harassment of the poor and disenfranchised across the USA

Puppet Master
© Ken Murray/New York Daily News
The NYPD said Kalan Sherrard’s incomprehensible puppet show created a hazardous condition and they charged him with disorderly conduct.
The following story is the latest in a series of articles I have written recently highlighting the over-prosecution and legal harassment of the poor and disenfranchised across the USA. While wealthy white collar criminals rape and pillage society with total immunity, those who have no voice are being increasingly stomped down upon by an unjust system. Some recent articles on the topic can read below:

Hyper-Sensitive Illinois Mayor Orders Police Raid Over Parody Twitter Account Charleston

Man Receives $525 Federal Fine for Failing to Pay for a $0.89 Refill
The Homeless in

NYC Are Now Living in Tiny Spaces in the Frame of the Manhattan Bridge


In some of these cases, there is a ridiculous law on the books to allow such over-prosecution or harassment, while other times, such as in the case below, the cops appear to be making shit up and are acting completely outside of the law.

As someone who grew up in New York City and lived there for 28 years, I am quite familiar with street artists in America's largest metropolis.

Personally, I've always enjoyed them. Some are extremely talented, others not so much, but they always added to the unique character of the city and only rarely posed any sort of threat or engaged in threatening behavior. This is why the following story and video really struck an emotional chord with me and I became overcome with sadness. In so many ways, what happened to Kalan Sherrard is what is happening to our country and culture in general. We are being collectively transformed into drugged out, bland, soulless zombies by a parasitic and incredibly corrupt financial system coupled with unrelenting corporate and government propaganda. Anyone who is interesting or stands out is shouted down by the establishment as a "conspiracy theorist," a "radical," or as Harry Reid himself recently stated, a "domestic terrorist."

Make no mistake about it, what just happened to Kalan Sherrard is happening to us all. It's just that many of us don't see it yet.
Stormtrooper

Albuquerque police execute third person in five weeks, this time a teenager SUSPECTED of stealing a truck


19-year-old Mary Hawkes, murdered in broad daylight by government enforcers
A 19-year-old woman was shot and killed by police in Albuquerque, New Mexico early Monday after being suspected of stealing a truck. This week's death of Mary Hawkes now marks the third time in five weeks that Albuquerque cops have killed a civilian.

Albuquerque Police Chief Gordon Eden told the Associated Press this week that an officer was pursuing the suspect on foot Monday morning when the woman reportedly "stopped, turned and pointed a handgun at close range." Recently retired Valencia County Magistrate Danny Hawkes identified his daughter Mary as the victim later that evening, and the Albuquerque Journal reported the next morning that the woman had two previous run-ins with police as an adult, in addition to charges lobbed at her as a youth.

Reports about the Monday morning incident that have surfaced in the hours since have focused heavily not on Mary Hawkes, however, but rather on the sordid actions that has brought the Albuquerque Police Department into the national spotlight as of late and spawned a series of protests.

Comment: DOJ investigation confirms: Albuquerque police 'executing' citizens
Protesters descend on Albuquerque City Hall calling for police reform

Snakes in Suits

Killing of environmental activists rises across the globe

© AP
In this July 6, 2012 file photo, candles are lit at the very spot where Dutch environmental activist Wilhem Geertman, a former religious missionary who helped poor farmers affected by illegal logging and mining, was killed allegedly in a robbery attempt in San Fernando city, Pampanga province, north of Manila, Philippines.
As head of his village, Prajob Naowa-opas battled to save his community in central Thailand from the illegal dumping of toxic waste by filing petitions and leading villagers to block trucks carrying the stuff - until a gunman in broad daylight fired four shots into him.

A year later, his three alleged killers, including a senior government official, are on trial for murder. But the prosecution of Prajob's murder is a rare exception.

A survey released Tuesday - the first comprehensive one of its kind- says that only 10 killers of 908 environmental activists slain around the world over the past decade have been convicted.

The report by the London-based Global Witness, a group that seeks to shed light on the links between environmental exploitation and human rights abuses, says murders of those protecting land rights and the environment have soared dramatically. It noted that its toll of victims in 35 countries is probably far higher since field investigations in a number of African and Asian nations are difficult or impossible.
Arrow Up

The Bundy Paradigm: Will you be a rebel, revolutionary or a slave?

"Those who make peaceful revolution impossible will make violent revolution inevitable." - John F. Kennedy
Bundy Ranch
© OffGridSurvival
Supporters gathering outside the Bundy Ranch.
Those tempted to write off the standoff at the Bundy Ranch as little more than a show of force by militia-minded citizens would do well to reconsider their easy dismissal of this brewing rebellion. This goes far beyond concerns about grazing rights or the tension between the state and the federal government.

Few conflicts are ever black and white, and the Bundy situation, with its abundance of gray areas, is no exception. Yet the question is not whether Cliven Bundy and his supporters are domestic terrorists, as Harry Reid claims, or patriots, or something in between. Nor is it a question of whether the Nevada rancher is illegally grazing his cattle on federal land or whether that land should rightfully belong to the government.

Nor is it even a question of who's winning the showdown - the government with its arsenal of SWAT teams, firepower and assault vehicles, or Bundy's militia supporters with their assortment of weapons - because if such altercations end in bloodshed, everyone loses.

What we're really faced with, and what we'll see more of before long, is a growing dissatisfaction with the government and its heavy-handed tactics by people who are tired of being used and abused and are ready to say "enough is enough." And it won't matter what the issue is - whether it's a rancher standing his ground over grazing rights, a minister jailed for holding a Bible study in his own home, or a community outraged over police shootings of unarmed citizens - these are the building blocks of a political powder keg. Now all that remains is a spark, and it need not be a very big one, to set the whole powder keg aflame.

As I show in my book A Government of Wolves: The Emerging American Police State, there's a subtext to this incident that must not be ignored, and it is simply this: America is a pressure cooker with no steam valve, and things are about to blow. This is what happens when a parasitical government muzzles the citizenry, fences them in, herds them, brands them, whips them into submission, forces them to ante up the sweat of their brows while giving them little in return, and then provides them with little to no outlet for voicing their discontent.
Attention

Large whale carcass found in Dalian sea, China

© Sina Weibo
A dead whale measuring over four meters long was found floating belly-up in the sea area off Changhai County, Dalian, Liaoning Province, on April 19, a netizen said on his Sina Weibo account on Saturday. The whale was most likely killed by unexpected strikes, judging by the bruises on its belly.
Ice Cube

Another report of dead whales stranded by ice off Newfoundland

© Kayla Kendall
Kayla Kendall tweeted this photograph on Saturday of a whale stranded at Rocky Harbour because of ice.
The Canadian Coast Guard has issued a new report of dead whales off western Newfoundland.

Mariners have been warned about four whale carcasses at different locations at the entrance to Bonne Bay.

It has not said what kind of whales have died.

Earlier this month, at least nine blue whales died in ice in the Gulf of St. Lawrence.

In March, dozens of dolphins were killed when they were crushed by ice near Cape Ray, on Newfoundland's southwest coast.
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