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Sat, 09 Dec 2023
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US: Former Youth Minister In Jail on Child Porn Charges

Michigan State Police say 45-year-old Enrique Alcaraz sent and received nude photographs of minor children.

Elsie resident, former member of the Ovid-Elsie School Board and former youth minister Enrique Alcaraz, 45, is facing 3 felony child pornography charges after a six month long investigation by Michigan State Police.

State Police say Alcaraz sent nude photographs to one child and received nude photographs from another child. State Police say Alcaraz used fake names on Facebook and Yahoo to contact minors, including Matt James, Mary Parker and Brad Merritt.

Alcaraz, known by some neighbors as "Rick", was elected to the Ovid-Elsie School Board last year and was a youth minister for the Church of the Living Word in Ovid. He resigned both positions in March. Neighbors also told WILX that Alcaraz appeared to be a foster parent.

"He just seemed to be good with kids, always having kids around," said John Anderson, who lived near Alcaraz in Elsie. "Rick Alcaraz was a good neighbor [and] friend. I never had any beefs with him or troubles [and] I really enjoyed his company."

Alcaraz has been arraigned on three charges which could carry up to 20 years in prison.


TSA: Police State Tactics

Senseless rules, arbitrarily enforced.

Here are two comments (sent by Lisa Simeone) from Jonah Goldberg's TSA column in the LA Times:
anonymousreader at 5:25 PM June 29, 2011

Two weeks ago I flew from LA to Madison, Wisconsin with only a carry-on bag. Before going through security, I checked with airport personnell to make sure I didn't have to check my bag, since it had my cosmetics, sunscreen, and hair products in it. They said it was OK. Security in LA had no problem with it, didn't ask a question, I flew with my carry on no problem. On my way back from Wisconsin four days later, the TSA tried to force me to throw out the very same objects. (It was too late to check in a bag for my flight, so I had no other option but throw them away) When I objected and pointed out that this was inconsistent with what the TSA in Los Angeles did, they accused me of having guns & being a terrorist. At this point the airport police were called and I was totally hysterical. I was handcuffed, given a 325 dollar ticket for disorderly conduct, and missed my flight-- all for questioning the inconsistent policy and total asinine behavior of the TSA. Oh and just for kicks, I might mention that I am a caucasian female with no criminal record and an extensive education. F*** you TSA!!! I vote Greyhound from here on out.
anonymousreader at 5:27 PM June 29, 2011

Let me add that the airport police manhandled me and shoved me against a glass wall to handcuff me because I was walking towards them (thought they would be the voice of reason here) -- "walking towards them" was taken as "an implication of aggression". Oh yeah, because a little blonde lady upset over her cosmetics is gonna beat the crap out of two overweight knuckleheads with GUNS. Do those guys even think???

Bad Guys

US - 9/11 The World Trade Center Towers Were 'Vaporized' Into Dust

Where is the missing 1200 feet of heavy building materials? It was vaporized according to the engineering firm that built the buildings (and helped engineer the demolition of them). Controlled demolition turns buildings into dust at near freefall speed, not 'collapses'. Steel dust? That requires far more energy than a collapse event could produce and still have near full gravitational acceleration (violates conservation of momentum/energy). The buildings were demolished with well placed explosives ..... without a shadow of a doubt, as clear as it can get.

Comment: For more information concerning the vaporization of the World Trade Center, see this SOTT link:

Dr. Jim Fetzer: Nevermind a controlled-demoliltion, the WTC was vaporized on 9/11


The $1 billion that no one in the United States wants

© John W. Poole/National Public Radio
Millions of dollars worth of $1 coins languish in a vault at the Federal Reserve Bank of Richmond's Baltimore branch.
Budget cuts thanks to the stalled economy have imperiled care for the mentally ill, left a new school building unstaffed, and perhaps most disastrously, limited efforts to keep nukes out of the hands of terrorists. And yet the Federal Reserve Bank of Richmond is sitting on $1 billion in gold dollar coins it says the American public has little interest in using.

Two reporters from NPR's Planet Money visited the facility where the coins are kept, in Baltimore, Md., and offer up a report about the stash of funds that the American public doesn't care for, Meanwhile, even as the coins gather dust, American taxpayers are paying top dollar (as it were) to store the surplus--and even to increase it.


Are You Happy That Your Online Life is an Open Book?

© unknown
As if we were caught up in some science fiction B-movie, a war is being fought over the control of our very souls.

As yet, the conflict is little more than a few light skirmishes - most of us are hardly aware it's happening - but, in the view of many, some mighty battles lie ahead in our cybernetic future.

Perhaps it's pushing it slightly to conflate the computer at which I'm sitting with my soul, but not by much.

My identity, opinions, political and personal affiliations, interests and guilty secrets are all on a hard drive somewhere and are machine-readable.

At the end of every day, I leave a 'digital trail' behind me, rendering me vulnerable to the internet's danger-strangers.

The wildest cowboys of cyberspace have been much in the news recently. There is Julian Assange, whose leaks have posed a threat to global peace and security.


US - MSNBC suspends Mark Halperin for Obama remark

MSNBC has suspended political analyst and Time magazine writer Mark Halperin indefinitely over a remark he made about President Obama Thursday morning.

"Mark Halperin's comments this morning were completely inappropriate and unacceptable," said MSNBC spokesman Jeremy Gaines in a statement. "We apologize to the President, the White House and all of our viewers. We strive for a high level of discourse and comments like these have no place on our air."

Appearing on Morning Joe this morning, Halperin, senior political analyst at Time and MSNBC and co-author of the 2008 election opus Game Change, sought to characterize the president's demeanor at a press briefing the previous day. You can watch the video below--though the term Halperin uses to characterize the president is vulgar, as the partial transcript after the jump will also show:


FBI Investigating Bizarre Alleged Child Pornography Case

The case involves child pornography, a Weirton man and false e-mails from a West Virginia State Police trooper.

The case started back in April 2011, when the West Virginia State Police executed a search warrant against Sean Price, 34, of Weirton for allegedly possessing child pornography.

Officers seized three one-terabyte hard drives from Price's home on Washington Street. Investigators are now waiting for the final report from the State Police Forensic Lab for any illegal items on the hard drives seized from Price's home.

However, in a bizarre connection to this case, a false e-mail account was created in the name of a West Virginia State Trooper, involved in the initial search.

United States Attorney William Ihlenfeld said that someone created a false e-mail account using the name of a state trooper and sent three separate e-mails to 37 people in both law enforcement and the media, each containing 17 images depicting child pornography.

Bizarro Earth

US - Grand River Dam Authority, advises public to stay out of Grand Lake

Update From Meeting: After an emergency meeting with the board of directors of the Grand River Dam Authority, the board has made a decision regarding the future of Grand Lake.

The board has decided to continue posting signs and advising the public to stay out of the water.

While they recommend the public to not come into contact with the waters of Grand Lake, they are not prohibiting it.

They say the major focus of concern is on pets and young children. Friday's blue-green algae (BGA) levels are higher than ever recorded before in Oklahoma. The GRDA says if algae blooms die all at once, the amount of toxins released into the water would become even more dangerous.

Bizarro Earth

Making the World Safe for Hypocrisy

Why has the United States government supported counterinsurgency in Colombia, Guatemala, El Salvador, and many other places around the world, at such a loss of human life to the populations of those nations? Why did it invade tiny Grenada and then Panama? Why did it support mercenary wars against progressive governments in Nicaragua, Mozambique, Angola, Ethiopia, Afghanistan, Indonesia, East Timor, Western Sahara, South Yemen, and elsewhere?

Is it because our leaders want to save democracy? Are they concerned about the well-being of these defenseless peoples? Is our national security threatened? I shall try to show that the arguments given to justify U.S. policies are false ones.

But this does not mean the policies themselves are senseless. American intervention may seem "wrongheaded" but, in fact, it is fairly consistent and horribly successful.

The history of the United States has been one of territorial and economic expansionism, with the benefits going mostly to the U.S. business class in the form of growing investments and markets, access to rich natural resources and cheap labor, and the accumulation of enormous profits.

The American people have had to pay the costs of empire, supporting a huge military establishment with their taxes, while suffering the loss of jobs, the neglect of domestic services, and the loss of tens of thousands of American lives in overseas military ventures.

The greatest costs, of course, have been borne by the peoples of the Third World who have endured poverty, pillage, disease, dispossession, exploitation, illiteracy, and the widespread destruction of their lands, cultures, and lives.

As a relative latecomer to the practice of colonialism, the United States could not match the older European powers in the acquisition of overseas territories. But the United States was the earliest and most consummate practitioner of neoimperialism or neocolonialism, the process of dominating the politico-economic life of a nation without benefit of direct possession.

Almost half a century before the British thought to give a colonized land its nominal independence, as in India-while continuing to exploit its labor and resources, and dominate its markets and trade-the United States had perfected this practice in Cuba and elsewhere.

In places like the Philippines, Haiti, and Nicaragua, and when dealing with Native American nations, U.S. imperialism proved itself as brutal as the French in Indochina, the Belgians in the Congo, the Spaniards in South America, the Portuguese in Angola, the Italians in Libya, the Germans in Southwest Africa, and the British almost everywhere else. Not long ago, U.S. military forces delivered a destruction upon Vietnam, Laos, and Cambodia that surpassed anything perpetuated by the older colonizers. And today, the U.S. counterinsurgency apparatus and surrogate security forces in Latin America and elsewhere sustain a system of political assassination, torture, and repression unequaled in technological sophistication and ruthlessness.

All this is common knowledge to progressive critics of U.S policy, but most Americans would be astonished to hear of it. They have been taught that, unlike other nations, their country has escaped the sins of empire and has been a champion of peace and justice among nations. This enormous gap between what the United States does in the world and what Americans think their nation is doing is one of the great propaganda accomplishments of the dominant political mythology.

It should be noted, though, that despite the endless propaganda barrage emanating from official sources and the corporate-owned major media, large sectors of the public have throughout U.S. history displayed an anti-interventionist sentiment, an unwillingness to commit U.S. troops to overseas actions-a sentiment facilely labeled "isolationism" by the interventionists.

Comment: For more information on how hypocrisy displays itself in our society, see this Sott link:

Hypocrisy of the Authoritarians


The War You Don't See

© Unknown
As weapons and propaganda become even more sophisticated, the nature of war is developing into an 'electronic battlefield' in which journalists play a key role, and civilians are the victims. But who is the real enemy? Follow the money trail behind 9/11 and you will know. The enemy is inside the gates...

This movie has just been banned in the US -- Get a copy while you can!

The War You Don't See is directed by John Pilger (award winning journalist, investigative reporter and documentary film pioneer) and Alan Lowery, and features many candid interviews.

The War You Don't See is a powerful and timely investigation into the media's role in war, tracing the history of 'embedded' and independent reporting from the carnage of World War One to the destruction of Hiroshima, and from the invasion of Vietnam to the current war in Afghanistan and disaster in Iraq.