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Tech billionaire buys California public beach, uses armed guards to close it

© (Reuters / Stephen Lam )
Venture capitalist Vinod Khosla.
A billionaire who bought a popular beach only to close it off to the public finally spoke on the contentious issue on Monday, although his comments seem to have only generated more frustration among concerned Californians.

Vinod Khosla, a Silicon Valley entrepreneur who co-founded Sun Microsystems - a computing pioneer perhaps best known for developing the Java programming language - took the witness stand in a civil trial on Monday regarding his purchase of Martins Beach.

The civil suit was first filed in San Mateo County in March 2013 against the then-unidentified owner of the beach for painting over a billboard welcoming people to the seaside location, locking the gate, preventing entry, and hiring armed guards to keep the public out.

The beach had been open to the public for 100 years, acting as a popular swimming location for the duration of that time. It is located 35 miles south of San Francisco and was especially popular among surfers trying to ride waves that are hard to find elsewhere. Private ownership of California beaches has become an increasingly contentious issue as more billionaires have come out of Silicon Valley.

Comment: "Life's a beach," for those who can afford one.


Andreas Popp speech at 'Monday Demonstration' in Berlin: 'Turn off the TV, don't vote, and get informed about the interational banking elite ruining the planet'

Listen to the following speech by Andreas Popp at the Easter 'Monday Demonstration' 2014 in Berlin, where 6,000 demonstrators gathered to voice their disgust with the West's war against Russia, continued U.S. occupation of Germany, and global socio-economic injustice.

Andreas Popp is a businessman and author who, together with his friends at Wissensmanufaktur Institute, has developed an alternative "Plan B" for the western economy and society since they realized that the current system does not serve the people, and cannot be 'healed' from within.

German mainstream media continues to ignore the peaceful weekly Monday demonstrations, now being held in over 34 German cities - defaming them ludicrously as "a new right-wing movement", whatever this should mean - as well as the efforts and offerings of Wissensmanufaktur and many other activists.

Comment: It's interesting that the equivalent movement in France has also been labelled by its government as 'right-wing'...

See also:

Plan B - Revolution des Systems für eine tatsächliche Neuordnung (EN: 'Plan B: A Systemic Revolution for Real Transformation', .pdf), von Andreas Popp und Rico Albrecht


German journalist and activist Ken Jebsen: 'The system is demasking itself'

Watch this extraordinary speech by former mainstream journalist Ken Jebsen at a demonstration against globalization and for peace - Berlin, May 5th 2014.


Update! Turkey mine blast in Manisa province kills 201, traps more

Turkish mine disaster
© AP

An explosion at a coal mine in the western Turkish province of Manisa has left at least 201 people dead and more than two hundred others trapped, officials say.

A faulty electrical transformer is believed to have caused the explosion at the mine, which occurred in the town of Soma at around 3:30 p.m. local time (1230 GMT).

Early on Wednesday, Turkish Energy Minister Taner Yildiz described the situation at the mine as "worrisome," saying, "We fear the number (of casualties) could rise even further because those who came to help out may be among the injured and affected by the smoke."

Turkey's energy minister further said that 80 miners were also injured in the explosion and ensuing fire in the mine and noted that 787 workers had been underground at the time of the blast.

"As the time passes, we are very quickly heading to an unfavorable outcome," Yildiz said.

Cow Skull

Junta's attack continues: Self-defense units in Slavyansk, Kramatorsk claim to have killed 8 Ukrainian gov't troops, destroyed several armored vehicles

Kramatorsk  clash
© Reuters
Ukrainian soldiers in an earlier clash with pro-Russia protesters in a field near Kramatorsk, in eastern Ukraine
Self-defense units opposing the de facto Kiev authorities in Slavyansk and Kramatorsk, the Donetsk region of Ukraine, claim to have killed at least 8 troops and destroyed several armored vehicles belonging to the government forces early on Wednesday.

"There was another armed clash at night, and the enemy again tried to launch an offensive at about 1 o'clock. However, we managed to rebuff the attack and destroy several enemy armored vehicles. Eight of their men have been killed and seven wounded. Unfortunately, we also have losses," Vyacheslav Ponomaryov, the people's mayor of Slavyansk, told Interfax on Wednesday.

Ukrainian security forces attacked several areas outside Slavyansk and Kramatorsk in the early hours of Wednesday, Ponomaryov said.

"They used armored personnel carriers, they have fortified firing points there, and they used heavy mortars in the village of Andriyivka. They mainly fight on the outskirts and fear to enter the city," he said.

Ponomaryov said also that the situation in both Slavyansk and Kramatorsk was calm on Wednesday morning.

"Everything has been quiet since morning. There's been some shooting now and then, but we've got used to it," he said.


Thieving Rabbi charged with stealing $12.4 million from New York disabled kids

Rabbi Samuel Hiller
© Unknown
Photographs of Rabbi Samuel Hiller and his three accomplices being displayed on a board
A New York rabbi and three others were indicted for stealing over $12.4 million in public aid for disabled pre-schoolers and using it to spruce up their homes, get catering discounts and fund a relative's cosmetics business, authorities said on Tuesday.

The four men, who had ties to one of the city's largest providers of special education services for disabled pre-schoolers, were due in court on Tuesday on criminal charges in a 42-count indictment, including grand larceny, identity theft, and falsifying business records, Queens District Attorney Richard Brown said in a statement.

If convicted, each faces up to 25 years in prison.

They are accused of stealing money meant to benefit the Island Child Development Center in Queens, a non-profit special education provider for Orthodox Jewish children aged 3 to 5.

Bad Guys

US infrastructure rotting away while billions go to surveillance, killing, and foreign bribery

US infrastructure
© Reuters / Ivan Alvarado
A federal fund employed to improve roads, bridges, and ports in the United States is dangerously bare, the Obama administration told Congress.

According to the White House, over 112,000 ongoing projects - that come with around 700,000 jobs - could fall idle without action in Congress to boost the Highway Trust Fund.

US Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx said the project delays would have a terrible effect on commerce.

"We have an infrastructure deficit in this country," Foxx said Monday from the White House.

Comment: It is becoming more obvious every day that the US government has no interest in taking care its own citizens. Those in charge are only interested in fomenting war around the world while poverty, declining quality of life, and economic stagnation destroy the country from within.
Infrastructure of US Doomed?
Infrastructure is Crumbling While US Congress Blathers: Bridges, Tunnels and Railroads Structurally Deficient
US Government Wasting Tax Money on Iraq, Afghanistan Reconstruction Failures
U.S. already third world economy: American economist
Decline of the American empire? Global configurations of power, the swindle economy and the criminal state


Video: Man tries to set children and himself on fire in Belfast city centre

© Belfast Telegraph
The man lights a fire outside City Hall, douses himself in white spirit and approaches the flames. Main, David Russell bravely forces him to the ground and keeps him away from the fire before being helped by other passers-by.
A teenager has been hailed a hero after he stopped a man turning himself into a human fireball outside Belfast City Hall. Also in this Section Warning over payments unit costs Brothel madam Rong Chen clears first stage in fight against deportation to China Gun used in fatal PSNI shooting of Neil McConville was destroyed Judge settles libel action with Sunday World

Police fired a stun gun at the man in his 30s who had lit a fire on the pavement and then doused himself in white spirit in front of rush-hour commuters.

As the flames rose, he also flung the flammable liquid at people around him, hitting schoolboys and girls who were filming the incident on their mobile phones.

Some of them, not realising the danger, appeared to think they were watching a magic act.


If you're assaulted at the World Cup, 'don't scream' say Brazil police

2014 world Cup
© Reuters / Paulo Whitaker

A general view is seen of the Arena de Sao Paulo Stadium, one of the venues for the 2014 World Cup, before a soccer match test in the Sao Paulo district of Itaquera May 10, 2014. The stadium will host the opening match of the 2014 World Cup
Brazilian police have warned World Cup visitors not to scream if they are robbed. This comes among other tidbits of cautionary advice issued to intrepid sports fans visiting the country from June this year, in a pamphlet issued by Sao Paulo police.

"Do not react, scream or argue," the brochure states. The Sao Paulo police, who put the document together, are reportedly attempting to keep criminal and violent incidents to a minimum.

The main warning is to help reduce harm caused by armed robbery - robbery followed by death, known as latrocinios - committed against those who have no idea how to behave in a city as violent as Sao Paulo, according to the local paper, Estadao Sao Paulo.

The crime of 'latrocinios' has become an increasingly widespread concern. "Tourists come mainly from Europe and the United States, where they do not see this crime very often," President of the World Civil Police of Sao Paulo's Cup Management Committee, Mario Leite, told the paper.

Red Flag

15-year old Leeds boy charged in stabbing murder of teacher, Ann Maguire

© Christopher Furlong/Getty Images
Hundreds of floral tributes have been left in honour of teacher Ann Maguire, who died after being stabbed in her classroom.
15-year-old accused of killing Spanish teacher Ann Maguire, who was stabbed to death in front of pupils

A 15-year-old boy has been charged with the murder of a school teacher stabbed to death in front of pupils in Leeds earlier this week.

The teenager, who cannot be named for legal reasons, was charged three days after being restrained by teachers at Corpus Christi Catholic College in the Halton Moor area of east Leeds.

He will appear in front of Leeds youth court on Thursday, the crown prosecution service said. The hearing will be closed to the public though journalists will be allowed to attend.

A statment from the CPS said: "A 15-year-old male was arrested in connection with this incident and has been interviewed under caution by police."