Monday, May 6, 2013

Court ruling today allows cities to ban pot shops

A budtender pours marijuana from a jar at Perennial Holistic Wellness Center medical marijuana dispensary, which opened in 2006 in Los Angeles, Califo...

Local governments in California have legal authority to ban storefront pot shops within their borders, California's highest court ruled on Monday in an opinion likely to further diminish the state's once-robust medical marijuana industry.

(David McNew / Getty Images A budtender pours pot from a jar at Perennial Holistic Wellness Center medical marijuana dispensary in Los Angeles. California's Supreme Court ruled Monday that cities may ban pot shops within their borders.)

Nearly 17 years after voters in the state legalized medical marijuana, the court ruled unanimously in a legal challenge to a ban the city of Riverside enacted in 2010.

The advocacy group Americans for Safe Access estimates that another 200 jurisdictions statewide have similar prohibitions on retail pot sales. Many were enacted after the number of retail medical marijuana outlets boomed in Southern California after a 2009 memo from the U.S. Justice Department said prosecuting pot sales would be a low priority.

However, the rush to outlaw pot shops has slowed in the 21 months since the four federal prosecutors in California launched a coordinated crackdown on dispensaries by threatening to seize the property of landlords who lease space to the shops. Hundreds of dispensary operators have since been evicted or closed voluntarily.

Marijuana advocates have argued that allowing local government to bar dispensaries thwarts the intent of the state's medical marijuana law — the nation's first — to make the drug accessible to residents with doctor's recommendations to use it.

The ruling came in the case filed after Riverside city lawmakers used zoning powers to declare storefront pot shops as public nuisances and ban the operations in 2010. The Inland Empire Patient's Health and Wellness Center, part of the explosion of retail medical marijuana outlets, sued to stop the city from shutting it down.

A number of counties and cities were awaiting the Supreme Court ruling before moving forward with bans of their own.

A mid-level appeals court previously sided with the city of Riverside, but other courts have come to opposite conclusions. Last summer, a trial judge ruled that Riverside County could not close medical marijuana dispensaries in unincorporated areas because the move did not give the shops any room to operate legally under state law.

Meanwhile, an appeals court in Southern California struck down Los Angeles County's 2-year-old ban on dispensaries, ruling state law allows cooperatives and collectives to grow, store and distribute pot. (Source)

All you have to do is kiss the NRA’s ass & you get a free shotgun!

    Good Day World!

In the NRA’s never-ending saga of stupidity, nothing is too outlandish to bring sheep into the fold. The recent NRA Convention highlighted idiots like Sarah Palin and Mad Dog Wayne LaPierre spouting gun propaganda and pathetic platitudes on how much they love a warm gun.

What a sight! Over 400,000 square feet of exhibition hall dotted with 550 exhibitors flashing guns and the latest in ammo.

The attendees even carried guns. It was a real bonding moment for the paranoid set, like survivalists and members of paramilitary groups. Oh, there was women and children there too. It was like any family excursion, but everyone there was armed. Right down to little Johnny’s rifle with a scope and custom blue stock, and little Jane’s Ak-15 with a hot pink pistol grip and barrel.

Anyway…the corporations who fund the gun lobbies are always looking for new ways to stimulate business. Well, they came up with a doozy this time! They put together a non-profit group who give you a shotgun if you join the NRA and take a weapons training course.

Their goal is to put a shotgun in every home. That’s because they don’t feel there’s enough guns in circulation. Corporations plus NRA (an unholy couple) equal obscene profits and no accountability for the devastation they bring upon our society.

They will lie and tell say you’re 2nd Amendment is being threatened and the government is going to take away your guns. It’s not about that and they know it. The ends to which this unholy couple will go to recruit has no limit.

  I give you the Armed Citizen Project:

“The Armed Citizen Project, a nonprofit group that arms residents living in high-crime cities, reportedly hopes to put shotguns in the hands of residents living in Chicago.The group is currently arming residents in the Houston and Tuscon areas, but made headlines after the National Rifle Association’s convention in Houston this weekend when they announced hoped for expansion into more than 15 cities, including Chicago, according to DNAinfo.com.

The group’s mission is to arm law-abiding citizens and train them in safety, legal, and tactical measures, according to ACP’s website. All participants who sign up and take the NRA training program will receive a shotgun, for free.” (Story here)

Time for me to walk on down the road…

 

Sunday, May 5, 2013

AS IT STANDS: Imagine the Koch brothers as owners of the LA Times - it could happen!

By Dave Stancliff/for The Times-Standard

   Since the Tribune Company has emerged from bankruptcy it’s entertaining the idea of selling its newspapers. It’s still talk, but scary talk.
  The reported value of the newspaper unit is $623 million. Not much when you consider they’re talking about the LA Times, The Chicago-Sun Times, The Baltimore Sun, and five regional newspapers.
  Actually, we’re talking about a fire sale here. The political influence alone is worth $623 million. It’s true there are some strings attached, like significant debt, but to someone with money to burn - say the Koch brothers - it’s a tiny splash in their vast money pool.
Yes, I said the Koch brothers. David and Charles are reportedly interested in adding the still respected publications the Tribune Company may put up for auction. The Koch brothers, as in Koch Industries, have very deep pockets and a burning desire to convert America into a conservative Gulag.
You can imagine what’ll happen right off; there will be an ideological stand-off between the newsrooms and the Koch brothers. Talk about culture clash. Betting boards in Las Vegas will take odds on who quits first at which newspaper.
It also doesn’t take a genius to know they wouldn’t expect to make money on the purchase for a long time. If ever. So what’s the attraction? Sam Zell lost $8.2 billion when he bought the Tribune newspapers and went bust during the recession. Hardly a golden goose deal.
Another alarm bell; the Koch brothers have a website - Kochfacts.com - to take on press coverage they don’t like. They’re like honey badgers, as David Sassoon, the publisher of Inside Climate News, found out when he won a Pulitzer Prize a few years ago for publishing articles about the Keystone XL pipeline that made the brothers look bad.

They went after his non-profit site after unsuccessfully pressuring Reuters to stop distributing the articles, despite not identifying any factual mistakes in the reporting. They even took out nasty ads about Sassoon on Google and FaceBook. 
Guess who else is interesting in buying the newspapers? None other than the infamous News Corp. Chairman Rupert Murdock! Sure it would be a tough road for him to hoe, as he already has Fox TV, but don’t leave it past his army of lawyers to obtain a waiver and let him bid upon the newspapers.
The prospective wealthy buyer list doesn’t end there, however. Doug Manchester, the new owner of the San-Diego Union Tribune and Aaron Kushner, the new owner of the Orange County Register, have expressed interest in buying the newspapers.
Eli Broad, liberal billionaire LA developer, threw his hat in the ring, hinting he may bid on the newspapers should they come up for sale. Even Warren Buffet, who already has newspapers in his portfolio, said he was intrigued by the sale.

Frankly, if the Koch brothers decide to buy the newspapers they have the best chance of success. That’s the scary part I mentioned earlier. They would have no trouble forking over a billion for the whole package - something the Tribune Company wants to happen.
The Tribune will file the formal documents this month. I don’t think its owners are too concerned about maintaining journalistic standard at this point. They just want to sever ties and move on. I’d be shocked if the bean counters at the Tribune Company wanted someone with more journalistic chops than David and Charles have to offer. After all, money talks and everything else walks, right?

 Time will tell if these conservative tycoons get their chance to further brainwash people by controlling mainstream media. Lord knows they feel persecuted, and have whined in past interviews about poor treatment from the liberal press.
Will anyone miss whatever journalistic integrity that remains with these once-proud newspapers? Or, will they join others that have slipped a few notches in reality after selling out to rich guys with personal agendas who publish political ideologies instead of unbiased news?
I suppose I don’t have to say just how hard the newspaper industry is struggling to make a profit today. The days of being profit centers and offering unbiased news have gone to the wayside, victims of competing advertising dollars, the economy, and wealthy buyers with agendas.
  As It Stands, I’m thankful for newspapers like The Times-Standard which allows me to share my opinions with you without fear of being censored or suppressed.

Websites that have picked this column up:

silobreaker – News & Opinions

Crude – UK site

 

Saturday, May 4, 2013

Stupid 911 Prank Callers in Florida Keep Authorities Hopping

            Good Day World!

I never could get why people say Californians are so crazy.

Listen, if you really want crazy try living in Florida!

That humid little state with alligators and a rapidly increasing Anaconda population, is home to the con-communities boiler rooms, zombies of all ages, swamp people, and retired Mafiosi!

Not too mention world class 911 prank callers:  

Dateline Florida- A St. Petersburg man who called 911 about 80 times Sunday saying he wanted Kool-Aid, burgers and weed delivered to him instead got a trip to jail, police said.

Jarvis Sutton, 34, is facing a charge of misuse of the 911 system following his arrest Sunday, according to Pinellas County Sheriff's Office jail records.

"The defendant admitted to calling 911 because he 'wanted Kool-Aid, burgers and weed to be delivered to him,'" an officer wrote in an arrest affidavit obtained by the Tampa Bay Times.

On his way to jail, Sutton started chewing on foam attached to metal caging in the back of the police cruiser, the report said. (via NBC 6 News)

Still in Florida…

Then there’s the St. Petersburg woman being held on bond after being arrested for giving her last $50 to a drug dealer and then thinking twice about the transaction, authorities said.

Katrina Tisdale, 47, called 911 to tell officers she wanted the money she had just spent on marijuana and cocaine back, according to St. Petersburg Police.

Still in Florida…

Dateline Tampa Bay - He might be the most prolific 911 crank caller in Tampa Bay history. He made one of his last calls about 8:30 a.m. Wednesday. It lasted three minutes and 26 seconds.

"911, what is your emergency?" the dispatcher asked.

"Hello?"

No one replied.

The calls started Dec. 31, according to the Hillsborough County Sheriff's Office, and ended Wednesday, February 14th, 2013.

In 45 days, he made more than 1,200 calls, an average of 27 per day. All came from an unregistered phone the Sheriff's Office tracked to the area of Massaro and Tampa East boulevards.

In many, he didn't say anything. In 19, he spoke. Sometimes he cursed at the dispatcher, the Sheriff's Office said. Sometimes, like in this call, he feigned danger.

"You better put the knife down," he said 34 seconds in. "I'm telling you that right now."

"What was that?" the dispatcher asked.

"He needs to put that knife down."

"What knife?"

"Always threaten me with that knife, huh? Why do you always threaten me with that knife?"

"Sir, who are you talking to?"

(Read more here)

Time for me to walk on down the road…

Friday, May 3, 2013

Robo-bugs on the wall: world's smallest bot takes flight!

Kevin Ma, Pakpong Chirarattananon

  Good Day World!

 Something is bugging me.

Remember that old saying, “I wish I were a fly on the wall so I could hear what they were saying?”

The new reality of the 21st century has brought that phrase home with the introduction of robo-bugs that can not only hear what you’re saying, but can see you while you’re saying it!

(Photo-Kevin Ma, Pakpong Chirarattananon)

That kind of news creeps me out, but there’s not much I can do about it. I might go out and purchase a heavy duty fly swatter (frying pan?) just to be on the safe side. They may be small, but they’re not that small! Where’s my super magnet!

Here’s the story:

“Insect-sized robots have long held promise in the minds of sci-fi nerds. They could poke through treacherous rubble in search-and-rescue missions, discreetly snoop on the guilty and innocent alike, and sometimes, just maybe, form into giant swarms that block out the sun and do the bidding of larger, less agile, robotic overlords.

Hopefully that last bit won't come true, at least not before they invent robo-bug repellent. But on Thursday, the door to the future was kicked open when engineers at Harvard revealed a penny-sized robot that can hover like a housefly, beating its wings 120 times per second.”(rest of story here)

Time for me to walk on down the road…

Thursday, May 2, 2013

Learnist: New user gives thumbs up for the popular social media platform

Learnist sure got a nice write-up at Digital Royalty! I agree with her 100%! Learnist is a great discovery!

SNIPPET:

“I used to bookmark my favorite articles and tried to keep my folders as organized as possible for future reference, but it became overwhelming and easily slipped into disarray. It wasn’t easy to refer back to articles and they were tough to share. Some articles got saved in my email, some I bookmarked in Chrome, some in Safari. Some got saved to Instapaper, Evernote, or Pocket. For lack of a better system, I had resigned myself to perpetual information chaos, until I made a great discovery: Learnist.”

Cannibalism Headline & 3 more suspects arrested in connection with the Boston bombings

       Good Day World!

Historians have known for decades that Jamestown had a terrible winter (1609-10) and that some people resorted to cannibalism to stay alive.

On a slow day in the mainstream news (if you don’t count *the arrest of three more suspects in the Boston bombings - it makes a hell of a headline:

(Doug Owsley, division head for physical anthropology at the Smithsonian's National Museum of Natural History, displays the skull and a facial reconstruction for "Jane of Jamestown" during a news conference at the museum in Washington on Wednesday. Carolyn Kaster / AP)

Grisly Evidence:Colonial Settlers Turned to Cannibalism in Tough Times! 

Experts have provided the grisly goods to back up 17th-century accounts of cannibalism during the Jamestown colony's "starving time" — including a skull that shows signs of being chopped at and pried apart.

“Our team has discovered partial human remains before, but the location of the discovery, visible damage to the skull and marks on the bones immediately made us realize this finding was unusual," Bill Kelso, chief archaeologist of the Jamestown Rediscovery Project in Virginia, said in a news release issued Wednesday. Specimens from the Jamestown site were laid out during a Washington news conference. (Read story)

* Related stories for Suspects Arrested in connection with Boston Bombings:

Boston Police Announce 3 More Suspects In Custody In Marathon Bombings

Feds arrest 3 new suspects in connection with Boston Bombings

Time for me to walk on down the road…

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

So you think you’re having a bad day eh?

Visit NBCNews.com for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy

It’s still a mystery how she got it up this tree!

  Good Day World!

You may or may not be having a good day today, but don’t feel alone. It happens to us all at one time or another. Some cases are just worst than others. See video on left.

Crawling the web I found some other people who wish they never got out of bed!

 Here’s the story of some guy who was dressed in a full wet suit, complete with scuba tanks on his back, flippers, and facemask when firefighter’s found his corpse in a burned-out section of a California forest. A post-mortem revealed that the person died not from
burns, but from massive internal injuries. What? Good read and there’s other stories too.

If you're having a bad day, just remember, at least you don't look like you did in middle school.

You know your having a bad day when you see your stockbroker hitchhiking out of town and other reasons!

This might make you feel better if you’re having a bad day. Here’s 19 people who are having a way worse day than you!

Time for me to walk on down the road…

 

Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Rafter’s Redemption: Chapter 6 – Deadly Harvest

      Good Day World!

It’s that time of the week when I feature a new chapter from my free Novella – Rafter’s Redemption.

If you’re a new reader, no problem. GO HERE for links to all the Chapters.

Today: Chapter 6 – Deadly Harvest

Snippet:The car’s engine started. Smiley rose, took aim and fired three quick shots into the driver’s side. Two struck Jesus in the head and he pitched sidewise striking the horn which blared angrily as the engine raced.”

Time for me to walk on down the road… 

 

Monday, April 29, 2013

The word from the looney bin is Boston Marathon bombing happened because of marijuana!

          Good Day World!

Nuts don’t have off days…

  There’s no time for reality breaks. They’re on a ideological mission and are pissed off! Their ire dwarfs any mission to Mars, supposedly the angry red planet. 

It looks like the rightwing nut community’s latest tinfoil hat warning that Weed was responsible for the bombings at the Boston Marathon is gaining legs.

Oh yes! The younger brother was allegedly a pot dealer, and that’s why he drove around in fancy cars, not because he was being funded by extremist Muslims…so the theory goes. But wait! It goes beyond that into the Twilight Zone.

I know. Pretty crazy shit. I can’t help wondering what’s the matter with these people? Why do they hate marijuana so much? Theories abound.

Here’s a couple of links on the topic:  

Accuracy In Media Blames Marijuana for Boston Attack

Cliff Kincaid blames marijuana for Boston Marathon bombing201303_katz.jpg

And today’s Hyprocrite Link is:

Medical Marijuana-Hating Assemblyman Caught With Marijuana Gets Charges Dismissed! Say hi to NY State Assemblyman Steve Katz!

Time for me to walk on down the road…

 

 

 

Sunday, April 28, 2013

AS IT STANDS: Unleashed: Social Media has Arrived & it’s Not Pretty!

  By Dave Stancliff/For The Times-Standard
 It’s official. Social media reached a watershed moment when diving into the mainstream media’s news pool to report on the Boston bombings and the subsequent manhunt for the suspects.
For better or worse, more Americans get their news from FaceBook, Google+, Instagram, Pinterest, 4chan, Reddit, Tumblr, and Twitter. Social media started out as a way to connect with friends and morphed into a multi-faceted platform offering everything from consumer products to breaking news.
It’s the breaking news part that worries me. I followed Twitter every day last week because it was getting news out faster than the traditional media sources. The downside of what I observed was the wild rumors spreading faster than the confirmed news reports.

  It was like the Wild West, as authorities encouraged citizens to help look for the two bombing suspects with their social media sources. Smart phone photos suddenly became viral as multiple suspect photos popped up. Chatter on  Reddit and 4chan was full of wild speculation. Traditional news sources struggled to keep the story going throughout the week and began to use what the social media offered.
  It was apparent to anyone who used the social media last week that it was in the vanguard of live videos and photos, out-scooping traditional news sources with ease. Talk about ugly. There was a lot of chaff in cyberspace and sorting it out was no easy job.
Real clues, tips and speculation flooded the web as common citizens turned into vigilantes. The legion of amateur sleuths cast suspicion on four innocent people, spread mistruths, and at times caused panic in real time and cyberspace. It was like sharks in a feeding frenzy. 

  The reason I believe this is a turning point in news coverage is because it’s the first time in the age of smart phones we’ve had a major terrorist attack. The social media’s hunt confused the authorities at times during the chase. 
A beast was released. A new threat to our privacy as common citizens emerged in the aftermath. “This is one of the most alarming social media events of our time,” said Siva Vaidhyanathan, a media studies professor at the University of Virginia in a recent interview with the LA Times.
“We’re really good at uploading images and unleashing amateurs, but not so good with the social norms that would protect the innocent,” Vaidhyanathan explained. The wild speculation that Muslim fundamentalists or right-wing extremists were responsible traveled like wildfire on the web.
I know advocates of social media and crowd-sourcing like to point out how quickly they can get information in a crisis situation. It’s true they can. The problem is the information isn’t always correct. Nor will it ever be a trusted source because of the lack of vetting stories, comments, etc. It will always be a problem regardless of what its supporters say.

The day has come when the internet has surpassed cable. But how can you tell if a source on the internet is valid? You’ve got plenty of pranksters on the web who like nothing better than causing trouble in the real world.

  My takeaway from this whole situation is that Americans are rapidly deserting traditional news sources. This is the 21st century and people are in a bigger hurry than ever. Instant news feeds that increased hunger. Experts admit this is not going to change as more smart phones come on line.
I think what worries me most is that people forget the images and names they throw out stay there forever. Corrections can be made later, but are less likely to be viewed than original content posted. Especially if some form of real world action resulted from the misinformation.
  For example, the tweet that made the stock market temporarily plunge on April 23rd when hackers got into the Associated Press (AP) twitter account and claimed bombs went off in the White House and the president was wounded. Two million AP subscribers went nuts!

  The social media also lets a mob rule mentality take away our privacy and put us on edge, wondering if we’ll be the next victim of rumors or wild speculation on a social media source. No more innocent until proven guilty. The faceless social media becomes the hunter and the judge.
  There is no controlling social media, any more than there is a way to control the internet. For better or worse, we have to learn to live with the mixed blessings that come from our social media sources.
  As far as traditional news sources go; newspaper, TV, and radio will continue to provide news with a measure of vetting not seen on the web. However, as we all know, the traditional news media outlets also have their problems. Corporations and politicians control their content so we have to be wary of their agendas.
  As It Stands, the writing is no longing on the wall, it’s on the web.

Websites carrying this column:

TwitUps : Unleashed: Social media has arrived and it's not pretty!

This entry was posted by Tom Endris on April 28, 2013 at 1:26 pm

Social media started out as a way to connect with friends and morphed into a multi-faceted platform offering everything from consumer products to breaking news. It's the breaking news part that worries me. I followed Twitter every day last week because

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Traditional Media – Google News

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Business Improvement & Social Media - Scooped by Ricard Lloria

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Back In The Public Eye: Ben Carson Pushes Hydroxychloroquine

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