Saturday, October 15, 2011

The Times They Are A-Changing…

Back in my day they said the times were changing…and so they are…and will always change.

They were calling for change in my day.

Some things never change though.

And that’s the need for change from one generation to the next…

A flashback that seems fitting today.

Majority of American troops to leave Iraq by January but US will still have a significant presence there

The good news is about 40,000 American troops are coming home from Iraq, reducing our footprint there considerably.

The bad news; there will be a massive American diplomatic presence for a long time to come.

From NBC News

“The U.S. in Baghdad is the largest in the world, and the State Department will have offices in Basra, Irbil and Kirkuk as well as other locations around the country where contractors will train Iraqi forces on U.S. military equipment they're purchasing. About 5,000 security contractors and personnel will be tasked with helping protect American diplomats and facilities around the country, the State Department has said.

The U.S. Embassy will still have a handful of U.S. Marines for protection and 157 U.S. military personnel in charge of facilitating weapons sales to Iraq.”

It seems we can’t let go of our eight-year mistake of invading and occupying Iraq. Just another case of American imperialism. Deals have been made and we can be sure of Iraq oil.

We still have Afghanistan and now our warmongering government is turning it’s attention to Africa by sending Green Berets to Uganda in what is the first part of a phased military operation that will spread to other nearby countries.

Once again, the government’s bullshit reasoning for an increased military presence is based upon lies designed to hide our capitalistic goals – there’s oil in Libya – and other natural resources we can plunder. We’re going in – wearing White Hats and all – to save these poor countries from some roving gang of thugs that’s supposedly terrifying the good people in Southern Africa. I’ve heard that song in Vietnam. It’s getting kind of old.

Our Chicken Hawks in the Pentagon are ready to rip Africa apart, like the vultures they are, in order to keep the war machine rolling. Africa screams…but no one hears.

As It Stands, until we pull our troops out from the more than 126 occupied countries, we can’t deny that American Imperialism thrives in the 21st Century.  

OWS Open’s Pandora’s Box: worldwide protests increase daily

Someone opened Pandora’s Box about a month ago when less than a dozen protestors began to occupy Wall Street in the name of the 99% who have lost hope for a true democracy.

      How the Myth relates to what’s happening today:

Once up a time, a long time ago, Zeus ordered Hephaestus (Aphrodite's husband) to make him a daughter. It was the first woman made out of clay. Hephaestus made a beautiful woman and named her Pandora.

Zeus sent his new daughter, Pandora, down to earth so that she could marry Epimetheus, who was a gentle but lonely man.

Zeus was not being kind. He was getting even. Epimetheus and Prometheus were brothers. Zeus was mad at one of the brothers, Prometheus, for giving people fire without asking Zeus first. 

Zeus gave Pandora a little box with a big heavy lock on it. He made her promise never to open the box. He gave the key to Pandora’s husband and told him to never open the box. Zeus was sure that Epimetheus' curiosity would get the better of him, and that either Epimetheus or his brother would open the box.

Pandora was very curious. She wanted to see what was inside the box, but Epimetheus said no. Better not. "You know your father," Epimetheus sighed, referring to Zeus. "He’s a tricky one."

One day, when Epimetheus lay sleeping, Pandora stole the key and opened the box.

Out flew every kind of disease and sickness, hate and envy, and all the bad things that people had never experienced before. Pandora slammed the lid closed, but it was too late. All the bad things were already out of the box. They flew away, out into the world.

Epimetheus woke up at the sound of her sobbing. “I opened the box and all these ugly things flew out,” she cried. “I tried to catch them, but they all got out.” Pandora opened the box to show him how empty it was. But the box was not quite empty. One tiny bug flew quickly out before Pandora could slam the lid shut again.

“Hello, Pandora,” said the bug, hovering just out of reach. “My name is Hope.” With a nod of thanks for being set free, Hope flew out into the world, a world that now held Envy, Crime, Hate, and Disease – and Hope.

Today we have millions of people worldwide hoping to change oppressive governments ruled by corporations and an elite few. How long will this hope for change last? The powers-that-be hope the people will eventually give up and go back to being good sheep.

Yet, as long as Hope is out there, and shared by millions, there’s always a possibility they’ll make a positive difference in the lives of the oppressed masses in the near future.

photo source

Where missing people are found, an accommodating commode, and air traffic controllers errors soaring

NamUs is a vast registry that anyone can us to scan records and search for people.

       Good Morning Humboldt County!

Another day in paradise! It’s nice to see you could drop by and share a cup of coffee with me and read a few stories to start your day. This is a fascinating world full of surprises.

NamUs: Where missing people can be found

There is a place where the lost can be found.

Long before Lisa Irwin vanished from her Kansas City home, there was another desperate search in Missouri for a little girl. Her name was Elizabeth Gill. On the afternoon of June 13, 1965, Elizabeth was in her family's front yard in Cape Giradreau. It was the last time the 2-year-old was seen alive.

Scott Kleeschulte also disappeared in Missouri. On June 18, 1988, the 9-year-old freckled face boy was walking down a street in St. Charles County. To this day, nobody knows what happened to him. The three cases, separated by decades, share a common bond with thousands of other files accessible to the public on the National Missing and Unidentified Persons System website. Known as NamUs, the vast national registry lets relatives, law enforcement, victim's rights advocates, and anyone scan the records and search for information that could help solve these heartbreaking mysteries. NamUs, which is run by the National Forensic Science Technology Center, is under the direction of the National Institute of Justice.

  This commode does it all ... for $6,400

The New York Times just published an in-depth review of Kohler's Numi toilet, a $6,400 contraption that is basically a cross between a potty and a butler.

The toilet, which costs 81 times the amount of your standard Home Depot toilet, has a touch-screen remote that flushes, cleans and dries its user. It also provides heat and music, and settings can be saved for each member of the family.

At first, we thought the Numi sounded like another unnecessary extravagance intended to make millionaires part with their money.But reporter Sam Grobart convinced us otherwise. Having spent a month living with the device, he writes:

And one thing I learned is this: It is possible to acclimate to such luxury. Anyone who has ever owned a car with a backup camera or heated seats knows what this means. Features that initially seem unnecessary can become something you cannot do without, even in a bathroom.  

Watchdog: Air traffic controller errors soaring

A report by a government watchdog says errors by air traffic controllers in the vicinity of airports as well as incidents in which there was an unauthorized plane, vehicle, or person on a runway have increased sharply in the past three years.The Government Accountability Office report released Thursday says errors by controllers working at radar facilities that handle approaches and departures within about 30 miles of an airport have more than doubled.

The report also says runway incursions at airports with control towers — which includes most large and medium sized airports — nearly doubled between 2008 and this year. A Federal Aviation Administration statement attributed the increases to better error reporting. The agency is also using new a plane-tracking system better able to spot planes too close together.

Time to walk on down the road…

Friday, October 14, 2011

Obama sends 100 military advisors to Uganda: Isn’t this how Vietnam began?

We’re about to repeat a big mistake (Vietnam) by sending combat troops to Africa – aka military advisors- into a country (Uganda) that is a political quagmire. Ultimately, they'll also deploy in South Sudan, the Central African Republic and the Democratic Republic of the Congo according to the White House.

Doesn’t anyone see what’s happening here? Even if we eventually do pull out of Iraq and Afghanistan our military is slated to deploy to other countries.

There’s no end in sight. The Chicken Hawks at the Pentagon manage to hold every administration (Republican and Democratic) hostage under the banner of patriotism. They paint country-after-country as our enemies, and then they go in and occupy those countries, no matter how big or how small.

I can only shake my head in disgust with Obama and the rest of the military puppets that claim to be politicians representing the people. The majority of Americans don’t want war. We want peace. And roofs over our heads, and food, and schools where our children get the best possible education. The people need jobs. Not new enemies worldwide.  

High Hopes: Lasting Happiness Found With Hallucinogen Use?

Lasting Happiness Found With Hallucinogen Use?

Researchers from Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine studying psilocybin, the mind-altering chemical in “magic mushrooms,” found that the chemical may actually alter people’s personalities for a long period of time, ABC News is reporting.

The study involved one high dose of psilocybin administered to 51 adult study participants and found that 30 of them underwent measurable personality changes lasting more than a year. The aspect of personality that changed is known as openness.

Openness, the authors wrote, “encompasses aesthetic appreciation and sensitivity, imagination and fantasy, and broad-minded tolerance of others’ viewpoints and values.” Measured on a widely used and scientifically validated personality inventory, changes in openness were larger in magnitude than changes typically observed in healthy adults over decades of life experiences, the scientists say.

The research, approved by Johns Hopkins’ Institutional Review Board, was funded in part by the National Institute on Drug Abuse and published in the Journal of Psychopharmacology.  article source

Artist agrees to only paint nude models after dark, Ron Paul’s ‘eyebrow toupee,’ and cleanup of OWS site is postponed

          Good Morning Humboldt County!

It’s O Dark Hundred and the sun hasn’t risen yet, but the coffees on and you’re invited to stay and have a cup with me. This mornings selection of stories run from whimsical to serious. Enjoy:


Artist can paint nude models only after dark

An artist arrested for applying body paint to a nude model in New York's Times Square will have charges against him dropped if his models strip naked only after dark, according to a court agreement reached on Thursday.

Police arrested Andy Golub, 45, in July and charged him with violating public exposure and lewdness laws. He has been painting nude models for about three years. Golub's lawyer, Ronald Kuby, argued that New York laws do not prohibit public nudity in the name of art, and a compromise was reached that was the basis of the court ruling.

Under the agreement, "he is permitted to paint bare breasts any time, anywhere, but the G-strings have to stay on until daylight goes out," Kuby said after a hearing in Manhattan criminal court.

Ron Paul’s ‘eyebrow toupee’? Droop at debate prompts suspicion

Has Ron Paul been wearing fake eyebrows? That's what the New York Times wonders, pointing to an incident at Tuesday night's Republican presidential debate in which the candidate's right eyebrow appeared to droop a bit under the hot lights:

Seen on television, Mr. Paul appeared to have a second, thinner brow under the one headed south, creating a delicate X over his right eye. Jesse Benton, a campaign spokesman, insisted that Mr. Paul had been the victim of the elements, namely a heavy pollen season in New Hampshire, and called accusations that he'd been artificially enhancing "stupid" and "insulting."

"Dr. Paul's allergies acted up a touch," Mr. Benton said in an explanation that might raise some, you know, questions.


Cleanup of Occupy Wall St. protest site is postponed

Anti-greed protesters were elated early Friday morning by the postponement of a cleanup of the park where they have been gathering for almost a month.

As day broke over Zuccotti Park, the cheering died down, but police on scooters positioned themselves in the streets around the park as an impromptu march began up Broadway in lower Manhattan.

Time to walk on down the road…


Clashes broke out between bottle-throwing demonstrators and police on horses and scooters as Occupy Wall Street protesters marched on the Stock Exchange on Friday, NBC News reported.

Image: A New York City police officer shoves a demonstrator affiliated with the Occupy Wall Street protests as they march through the streets in the Wall St. area,At least 10 people were arrested amid what was initially described as a celebratory march, which began when it was revealed the owners of Zuccotti Park — where the protesters had set up camp — had ditched cleanup plans that some claimed were a pretext to evict them.

NBC News reported that police used the scooters to try to force protesters off of the street at several locations on Wall Street and Broadway. In some cases, police rode scooters directly at people who stopped traffic and refused to move away. WNBC reported that at least 10 people had been arrested as police tried to stop about 500 people, with brooms raised in the air, from marching on Wall Street.

NBC News said that one person who had been arrested was injured and bleeding and was taken to the 7th precinct for treatment. NYPD was extending shifts for some officers across the city in response to the situation. Despite the police's efforts, protesters were gathering at the Stock Exchange, NBC News said.

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Tomorrow is deadline for OWS protestors to leave Zuccotti Park

Notice has been served to the Occupy Wall Street protestors at Zuccotti Park to clear out tomorrow.

What happens next is anyone’s guess. The police said they will make arrests if the park’s owners request them to.

The company that owns the private park where the demonstrators have camped out said it has become trashed and unsanitary. Brookfield Office Properties planned to begin a section-by-section power-washing of Zuccotti Park, near Wall Street, at 7 a.m.

"They're going to use the cleanup to get us out of here," said Justin Wedes, a 25-year-old part-time public high school science teacher from Brooklyn who was one of about 400 people in the park Thursday night. "It's a de facto eviction notice."

photo source

Protesters say the only way they will leave is by force. Organizers sent out a mass email asking supporters to "defend the occupation from eviction." "We are doubling up on our determination to stay here as a result of this," said 26-year-old Sophie Mascia, a Queens resident who has been living in Zuccotti Park for three weeks and intends to sleep there Friday night. "I think this is only going to strengthen our movement."

Let’s see what tomorrow brings…                                                     

Linguists say humans once sounded like Yodi from Star Wars

Image: Illustration incorporating Yoda

I’m not really sure what makes these experts think we sounded like Yoda, but I know one thing…we sure didn’t look like him!

“Many linguists believe all human languages derived from a single tongue spoken in East Africa around 50,000 years ago. They've found clues scattered throughout the vocabularies and grammars of the world as to how that original "proto-human language" might have sounded. New research suggests that it sounded somewhat like the speech of Yoda, the tiny green Jedi from "Star Wars."

By the way, did you notice the tats on Daddy caveman?                                    Story here

Surfer stands on Great White Shark, apple allergies, and report asks where Pentagon money is going

Doug Niblack

  Good Morning Humboldt County!

What a great day! Are you ready for a cup of coffee and a few stories to get your day going? Grab a chair and stay awhile:

Oregon surfer tells of standing on Great White

Doug Niblack was trying to catch another wave before going to work, when his longboard hit something hard as rock off the Oregon Coast and he suddenly found himself standing on the back of a thrashing great white shark.

Looking down, he could see a dorsal fin in front of his feet as he stood on what he described as 10 feet of back as wide as his surfboard and as black as his own Neoprene wetsuit. A tail thrashed back and forth and the water churned around him like a depth charge went off. "It was pretty terrifying just seeing the shape emerge out of nothing and just being under me," he told The Associated Press on Wednesday. "And the fin coming out of the water. It was just like the movies."

When an apple allergy suddenly appears

Imagine this: You take a bite of a crisp fall apple and notice your lips feel a little itchy. An odd sensation, but you ignore it and take another bite. Now your tongue is itchy too. After another bite, the itch spreads to your throat. As you swallow the apple, your throat starts to swell. The weird thing is, you're not allergic to apples; you've eaten them all your life. So what's up?

“I like to call oral allergy syndrome 'the cocktail party allergy,” says Dr. Chris Webber, an allergy/immunology specialist based in Denver, Colorado. “It is surprisingly common among people who have seasonal allergies, but (the sufferers) think there's something strange about (themselves) and never bring it up to doctors or friends. But if you bring it up at a social event, you find it is very, very common.”

Report: Pentagon doesn't know where the money is going

The Defense Department, which has promised to publish a reliable account of how it spends its money by 2017, has discovered that its financial ledgers are in worse shape than expected and that it will have to spend billions of dollars in the coming years to make its financial accounting credible, the Center for Public Integrity reported Thursday.

Photo - Defense Secretary Leon Panetta testifies before the Senate Armed Services Committee on Thursday. He was joined by the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, Adm. Michael Mullen.

Time to walk on down the road…

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Obsessed by a fairy tale, we spend our lives searching for a magic door and a lost kingdom of peace

For more mind-blowing photographs like this one go here.                             quote by Eugene O'Neill

Can you name any place in the world where someone can get two pensions for the same job?

There are many factors contributing to our Depression (screw that recession crap!) but when I see excesses like this labor leader is up to in Chicago (He’s expected to receive pension payments of nearly $500,000 a year) I gotta shake my head in wonder and disgust.

The Chicago Tribune and WGN-TV, which obtained information about union pension benefits during a joint investigation, said at least eight union officials in Chicago were eligible for what were described as inflated city pensions on top of union pensions for the same period of employment.

To rub salt into this corrupt little tale, Chicago and Illinois are facing financial trouble, in part due to pension shortfalls. I guess we know why now. Pigs can pop up anywhere.

Blackberry outages, Booty Bus impounded, and Navajos seek exemption for Grand Canyon flights

         Good Morning Humboldt County

I really love Autumn, and today’s another beautiful Autumn day here. C’mon in and grab a cup of coffee. Make yourself comfortable while checking out this trio of stories selected for your reading edification.

BlackBerry outages spread to North America

Sporadic outages of BlackBerry messaging and email service spread to the U.S. and Canada on Wednesday, as problems stretched into the third day for Europe, Asia, Latin America and Africa. U.S. Twitter users were reporting that their BlackBerrys weren't getting email on Wednesday morning. In Canada, spokesman Mark Langton of the carrier Bell confirmed that some of its BlackBerry subscribers were experiencing problems.

"A minority of BlackBerry users at all Canadian carriers are affected," he said in an email. "We understand the issue will be corrected this morning." The widespread problems added to the woes of Research In Motion Ltd., the Canadian company that makes the phones. It's struggling with slowing sales and a tablet that's been a dud. Its shares are approaching a five-year low.

On Tuesday, RIM said a crucial link in its infrastructure had failed, and a backup didn't work either. It said it was now working to get through a backlog of traffic. "The resolution of this service issue is our Number One priority right now and we are working night and day to restore all BlackBerry services to normal levels," the company said Wednesday. More here.

Detroit police impound 'Booty' bus strip club

Detroit police have impounded a party bus they say operated as a strip club for reveling football fans at a popular tailgating spot. The Detroit News and WDIV-TV report that the "Booty Lounge" bus was parked Monday near Ford Field, where the Lions played the Chicago Bears.

Police say it was cited for not having a state safety inspection and because the driver didn't have a commercial license. The bus was parked earlier Monday outside a bar in the Eastern Market area. Bus operator Joe Parsons agreed to move it at the request of police and said he planned to park out of town.

But it was discovered later by police on a city street near Ford Field. Parsons said Detroit has no ordinance against "mobile entertainment clubs."


Navajos seek exemption for Grand Canyon flights

An American Indian tribe whose reservation borders the Grand Canyon wants to boost its economy by giving tourists an aerial view of the massive gorge.

Nearly 5 million people visit the Grand Canyon each year, and some undoubtedly take a highway that runs through Navajo Nation communities.

Navajo lawmaker Walter Phelps sees potential in that number. He has sponsored legislation in the Tribal Council that asks the Federal Aviation Administration and the National Park Service to exempt air tour operators flying to or from the reservation from having to use valuable allocations required for commercial air tours at the Grand Canyon, similar to what the Hualapai Tribe has.

Time to walk on down the road…

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

American companies hitting it out of the ball park on profitability

Watching the baseball world series – even if it’s not your team – is fun. There’s something exciting about watching a home run.

For two straight years American companies have been hitting it out of the ball park on profitability even as the economy has struggled to grow and create jobs faster. Profits being reported for the three months ended Sept. 31 (according to Standard & Poor’s index) are expected to show another home run: double digit earnings growth.

That’s hard to reconcile when I look around this country and watch the 99%ers growing protest against Wall Street and banks greed. Like baseball, there’s two teams: the Have’s and the Have Nots.

As I watch the Rangers and the Tigers go at it in Game 3 tonight, I’m going to be wondering about how those other teams series is going to end. Play ball!

Shades of ‘Rocky,’ NBA cancels first 2 weeks of season, and vision problems follow 'stealth recall' of contact lenses

Image: Dewey Bozella is scheduled to make his professional boxing debut Oct. 15.

                    Good Morning Humboldt County!

Help yourself to a cup of steaming coffee and pull up a chair and relax for a bit. I’ve got an eclectic mix of stories for your viewing pleasure today. Thanks for stopping by and have a great day.

Exonerated of murder, boxer makes his debut at 52

The television crew had him up at dawn doing the Rocky fandango, dashing up the 72 stone steps of the Philadelphia Museum of Art and dancing around in triumph like another over-the-hill, underdog pugilist who had made it big.

Cliché or not, it is hard not to imagine the familiar trumpet score along with the thwock, thwock, thwock of fists on punching bags as Dewey Bozella trains for one of the least likely boxing matches in history.

After 26 years in New York State prisons, and two years after he was exonerated of murder, Mr. Bozella will make his professional boxing debut on Saturday in Los Angeles, at age 52, on the undercard of the light-heavyweight champion Bernard Hopkins. (A mere 46 himself, Mr. Hopkins became the oldest fighter to win a major world championship this May.)

Atlanta Hawks v Chicago Bulls - Game Two

Some very good games lost to lockout. Thanks a lot, guys.

With the cancellation of the first two weeks of the season, 100 NBA games went down the drain.

Hang an asterisk on this season — these are games commissioner David Stern said are gone. He said there is no chance of making them up. But what games are we now going to miss?

How about a great opening-night doubleheader — the Chicago Bulls heading into Dallas on the night the Mavericks raised the banner. Then a battle of generations as the Oklahoma City Thunder faced the Los Angeles Lakers. The Lakers’ second game was to have Chris Paul come in and test Kobe Bryant. Not any more. How about the Miami Heat vs. the New York Knicks? Gone. The Orlando Magic taking on the Heat? Gone.The Bulls start their annual circus trip Nov. 13 — when the circus comes to the United Center and the Bulls are kicked out of the arena for weeks. Which means that if the owners and players figure this out in the next couple weeks and the season starts Nov. 15, the Bulls will be on the road for the first chunk of it.

The more likely scenario is that more games will get canceled and the entire trip will get wiped out. The league is going to do it in two-week increments — it’s more painful for fans that way. And this is going to be a lot more painful before it ends. - Kurt Helin Oct 11, 2011, 9:23 AM EDT.

Torn corneas, vision problems follow 'stealth recall' of contact lenses

Amid growing reports of eye problems ranging from blurry vision to torn corneas, federal health officials are threatening to issue a public warning about recalled contact lenses manufactured by CooperVision Inc. and sold widely at stores such as Costco, Wal-Mart and LensCrafters.

The Fairport, N.Y., firm has yet to heed a request from the federal Food and Drug Administration to broaden notification of problems with certain lots of its Avaira Toric contact lenses, which were recalled quietly in August because of unidentified “residue.” “Absent prompt and adequate communication by CooperVision, the FDA may independently share its concerns about Avaira Toric contact lenses,” FDA spokeswoman Morgan Liscinsky said in an e-mail.

But for at least a dozen consumers who indicated to they have suffered impaired vision, excruciating pain or landed in emergency rooms after wearing the contacts launched in April and recalled in August, such notice is long overdue. “It is very frustrating that they’re not more vocal about it and that the FDA hasn’t warned more people,” said Mellisa Cotton, 40, of Atlanta, who said she suffered two corneal abrasions this summer after wearing Avaira Toric contact lenses.

Time to walk on down the road…

Monday, October 10, 2011

What Happened to Columbus Day?

In Manhattan this morning, it was 70 degrees and sunny, and a fresh breeze rustled the elm trees in the park as the Explainer hustled to the office. It’s bad enough having to work on a perfect autumn day. But it’s downright galling when that perfect day also happens to be a federal holiday. When did Columbus Day become just another Monday?

In the early 1990s when Congress planned a “Quincentennial Jubilee” in 1992 to celebrate the 500th anniversary of Christopher Columbus’ Oct. 12 landing on the Bahamas. The festivities were to have sent a replica Nina, Pinta, and Santa Maria sailing beneath the Golden Gate Bridge in a fatuous re-enactment of the Italian explorer’s “discovery of America,” but Native American leaders joined with liberals and environmentalists to protest the celebration.

Corporate sponsors never materialized, and the voyage was canceled. The same year, Berkeley, Calif., renamed the holiday “Indigenous People’s Day” in recognition of the civilizations that were nearly wiped out in the centuries following Columbus’ arrival. In most other places, Columbus Day simply withered over the years, with the political controversy serving as cover for employers to deny workers a paid vacation day.                             

Perhaps the holiday’s lowest moment since 1992 came in 2009, at the height of the recession. That’s the year Baltimore and Philadelphia canceled their long-running Columbus Day parades and California dropped the holiday as a paid day off for government workers—citing budget woes, not ethical misgivings.

Federal workers and the employees of 24 states still get the holiday, but they’re now in the minority. Even the Explainer's parents, school administrators in Ohio’s capital city, are at work today. When a place called Columbus stops celebrating Columbus Day, it’s clear the holiday is out of favor.

Those who chafe at being required to work on one of the nation’s 10 federal holidays can take some solace knowing that it didn’t even exist until 1907. That’s when Italian-Americans in Denver convinced the state of Colorado to declare Columbus Day a holiday, partly in celebration of their heritage. The Knights of Columbus successfully lobbied President Franklin D. Roosevelt to make it a federal holiday in the 1930s.

Today, Italian-American groups still hold Columbus Day marches in several cities, including Denver, where they are routinely attended by angry protesters.

First ran in Slate             image source

Special stupid robbers collection for a Monday morning

            Good Morning Humboldt County!

It’s a little wet outside this morning and I’ll bet a cup of hot coffee will warm you up. Grab a cup and join me this morning in this special Robber Fail collection of stories:

   Police say man robbed bank, then went for pizza

Arizona authorities say they have arrested a man who robbed a Yuma bank then went and spent some of the stolen money on beer and pizza at a nearby restaurant. Yuma police say 56-year-old Henry Elmer has been booked into county jail on a variety of robbery and theft-related charges.

Officers responded to a robbery call at the main branch of the Wells Fargo Bank across from the Yuma Police Station around 1:30 p.m. Saturday. A man reportedly entered the bank, produced a box-cutter knife and fled with an undisclosed amount of cash.

Police say Elmer then went to a nearby restaurant, ordered beer and a couple of slices of pizza and paid with some of the bank's money. Police say they located Elmer before the meal was served. It's unclear whether he has a lawyer, yet.

This Oct. 5, 2011 photo provided by the Anoka County (Minn.) Sheriffs Office shows Amanda Rose Owens, 18, of East Bethel, Minn. Owens, is accused of robbing her neighbor’s home by squeezing inside through the doggy door, told investigators she needed money to help fund her addiction to pornography. (AP Photo/Anoka County (Minn.) Sheriffs Office)

       Minn. woman accused of robbing home to buy porn

Authorities say an 18-year-old Minnesota woman admitted to investigators that she broke into a neighbor's home three times looking for items she could fence to feed her porn addiction.

Anoka County sheriff's investigators say the neighbor called to report he had surveillance footage of Amanda Rose Owens sneaking into his East Bethel home through a dog door.The St. Paul Pioneer Press reports ( ) that the neighbor set up the camera after $300 and several items were stolen.

Investigators say Owens admitted she had broken in three times. She said she need money so she could pay for 20 to 30 pornographic DVDs she bought. Owens was charged Wednesday with second-degree burglary. She does not have a listed phone number and it wasn't clear Saturday if she had an attorney.

Some crimes sound a little too dumb to be true. Like, something from a Disney Channel show. Except criminal activity involves prisons and money instead of hideous outfits and even worse acting….

Robber leaves bribe bucket and comes back for it

According to Local 12, one man in Cincinnati isn’t exactly main character material.  He broke into a potato chip plant, and proceeded to steal a computer disk, vehicle titles, a whole book of payroll checks, and other business papers. He then left a note for the company president demanding that $22,000 be left in a bucket for him, or else he would “expose personal matters of employees” and burn everything he had stolen. The president called the police, of course, who set up a bucket filled with convincingly fake cash, as well as surveillance material. They spotted the crook dragging the bucket away with a fishing pole…and arrested him in the forest, all tangled up in the fishing line. Aaaand…scene!

Time to walk on down the road…

Sunday, October 9, 2011

As It Stands– ‘American Uprising’ – an ongoing demonstration for equality

    “There’s something happinin here. What it is ain’t exactly clear.”
   Lyrics from “Stop Hey What’s that Sound” by Buffalo Springfield.

    By Dave Stancliff/For The Times-Standard
   Trees across America change colors as Autumn settles in and winds of discontent swirl down Wall Street. They carry the voices of an ever-increasing number of protestors camped out at Zuccotti Park and on sidewalks.
   Over 700 protestors were arrested for blocking traffic on the Brooklyn Bridge last weekend. People chanted, “We are the 99 percent!” Thousands of protestors gathered at Foley Square midweek and were joined by union activists in a march to Zuccotti Park.
   Their signs condemned the corporations, the banks, the speculators, the government, the wars, and the wealthy minority who rule like robber barons of old. They shouted epithets and chanted “F*** the Fed!” Signs proclaimed, "Tax Wall Street" and "Make Jobs Not Cuts."

   This ongoing demonstration has become known on Twitter (and recently by the mainstream media) as #OccupyWallStreet. It began in July with the launch of a simple campaign website calling for a march and a sit-in at the New York Stock Exchange.
   The call to protest came from anti-consumerist magazine AdBusters on September 17th, and people haven’t stopped coming. Over the past three weeks, demonstrations have addressed various issues, including police brutality, union busting and the economy.
   Perhaps the most intriguing aspect of this protest - which has extended to other states - is the lack of a central leadership. We’re witnessing a true grass roots movement. I’ve read  where protestors said they were inspired by the so-called “Arab Uprising.”
   The Wall Street Journal reported similar protests sprouting up across the country in cities including Chicago, Pittsburg and Los Angeles. Over 60 smaller cities throughout the country have had turnouts supporting the movement. Students at Humboldt State University, in Arcata, joined other students throughout California in voicing their concerns.

  Several hundred people marched around the financial district in San Francisco, their angry voices joining the New York protestors, "They got bailed out, we got sold out" and "Join our ranks, stop the banks."
   I hope the politicians are paying attention because no amount of rhetoric will satisfy the millions of Americans suffering through the worst economic crisis since the Great Depression.
  The majority of Americans are angry with our government and the power of the wealthy minority. This blacklash has no leaders, but the overall message is clear; things have to change. People can’t stand the inequalities in our system of government any longer.
   The mainstream media has reluctantly reported the Wall Street protests, and others that are springing up everywhere thanks to social medias like FaceBook and Twitter. I’ve followed this “American Uprising” from the start, and the thing that impresses me is the unity among strangers.
   I can’t help thinking about the sixties when protestors spoke out against the Vietnam War and a corrupt government. They made a difference. They showed if the majority of Americans banded together and let their voices be heard, they could make a difference.

   If the Republicans and the Democrats have any brains at all, they better pay heed to what’s happening in the streets. The winds of discontent are blowing and show no signs of letting up.

   The protests have been peaceful for the most part. People are arrested and ticketed. It’s important to look at who the protestors are. The core of our democracy - the middle class. Of course the poor are protesting too. They always have by virtue of their position in life. Their voices are seldom heard. There’s no Super PACs (Political Action Committees) for the poor.
   A fire has been started by the people. Not by a PAC (financed by the wealthy) and claiming to be for the people like the Tea Party. No, this a very real uprising among common Americans fed up with the powers that be. It’ll be impossible for the mainstream media to vilify any one person and call them responsible for the rebellion that is sweeping the cities.

   Despite that, expect negative reports about the protestors. Expect stories about liberals gone wild and lazy hippies having a heyday. Expect conservative attacks that revile those protesting Americans on Wall Street and Main Street USA. Above all, expect the demonstrators to continue to gather in growing numbers.
   More than the color of the leaves is changing this autumn. Common Americans are finding their voice. The working class. The people who bear the brunt of taxes while the corporations and the wealthy cheat. Everyday people. People who work long hours for low pay and practically no benefits.
  Common people who have a dream of equality. Who think all Americans should have health care and seniors shouldn’t have to fear for their social security benefits or be used as pawns in politics.
   The politicians who don’t respond to this groundswell of discontent will harvest what they sow when they come up for re-election. This is a campaign year. This is also the year the people have decided to fight back.       
   As the bitter winds of autumn carry the protests, they threaten sleet and snow as the protests grow. Angry voices ride the winds of change, unafraid of the establishment that has failed them so miserably. Their ranks continue to swell.
    As It Stands, can you hear them? The voices ringing out across the land?

Blog Break Until Presidential Election is Over

I finally hit the wall today. I can't think of what to say about all of the madness going on in this country right now. I'm a writer...