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Thu Apr 23, 2015 at 02:37 PM PDT

HRC Goes OWS? 1% Requires Toppling

by divineorder

Well kiss my grits, the HRC for President Campaign REALLY goes populist, with HRC even reportedly calling for the 'toppling' of the 1%!

Campaign Casts Hillary Clinton as the Populist It Insists She Has Always Been


In a meeting with economists this year, Mrs. Clinton intensely studied a chart that showed income inequality in the United States. The graph charted how real wages, adjusted for inflation, had increased exponentially for the wealthiest Americans, making the bar so steep it hardly fit on the chart.

Mrs. Clinton pointed at the top category and said the economy required a “toppling” of the wealthiest 1 percent, according to several people who were briefed on her policy discussions but could not discuss private conversations for attribution.

Still, Mrs. Clinton will pitch that “toppling” with a very different style from Ms. Warren, a bankruptcy expert whose populist message has been laser-focused on holding Wall Street accountable. Mrs. Clinton will present proposals for changes in the tax code as a way of also investing in education, infrastructure and communities.

Mrs. Clinton “wakes up asking how she can accomplish real things for families, not who she can attack,” said Gene B. Sperling, an economic adviser in the Clinton and Obama administrations. He added, “When she shows that fighting populist edge, it is for a purpose.”

Maybe she said it, maybe she didn't.  But the campaign has not backed totally away from it:
Zach Carter Become a fan

Hillary Clinton Calls For 'Toppling' The 1 Percent

The Clinton campaign told HuffPost they could not confirm the precise language of the quote, but did not distance themselves from its populist essence.

“No one in the room remembers this quote, and it doesn't sound like language she'd use," a Clinton aide emailed to HuffPost. "That said, our economy was nearly toppled in 2008 because the deck was stacked for those at the top and Hillary Clinton has said she's running to reshuffle the deck for everyday Americans so that it doesn’t topple again and people can actually get ahead. It’s a belief at the core of her entire career fighting and at the core of this campaign.”

But while Clinton may be focusing on the wealthy, the Times article also seemed to underscore a lingering tension between some of her top advisers and Warren herself.

Color me skeptical.  Talking populist retoric is one thing in a campaign, following through with real measures,  hmmmmm.
A rift between Clinton and Warren emerged when Clinton,as a New York senator, later voted in favor of the bankruptcy reform she, Warren and Sperling had all been fighting against during the Clinton administration.
We need a primary to get more specifics from our Dem candidates. Badly need one.

For a video of clips of  HRC and EW on Inequality :


For those who want Congress to have more input from constituents on TPP and TTIP
there's still time to stop TPP  Fast Track Authority in the House!

Senate panel OKs 'fast track' trade legislation, but battle awaits in House
The Finance Committee's actions Wednesday were delayed for hours because liberal Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., invoked an often-ignored Senate scheduling rule in protest. "This job-killing trade deal has been negotiated in secret," said Sanders, who made a lengthy Senate speech denouncing the legislation.

The trade debate turns to the House on Thursday. Rep. Tom Cole, R-Okla., estimates that about 180 to 200 House Republicans will vote for fast track, along with 15 to 30 Democrats. "This is the president's initiative," Cole said. "He's going to have to work his side of the aisle pretty hard."

The low end of Cole's estimate would leave Obama short of a majority in the 435-seat House.

Time to make some calls?
Congress: Don't betray democracy!
No "Fast Track" for the TPP!

Congress is pushing legislation right now that would "Fast Track" the Trans-Pacific Partnership—a secretive agreement negotiated behind closed doors by government bureaucrats and more than 600 corporate lobbyists. It threatens everything you care about: democracy, jobs, the environment, and the Internet. [Learn More] provides dialer and talking points, or DIY !
Go to the website for the member of Congress you wish to contact to find a postal address and mail a letter. Call the United States Capitol switchboard at 1-202-224-3121. The switchboard operator will connect you with the office you request.
Contact the U.S. Congress and the White House |  
 photo 150420RREI4792.jpg  

Tue Apr 21, 2015 at 03:23 PM PDT

Saudis Ending Yemen Bombing Fail

by divineorder

Hey, let's go bomb somebody!  Then lets go invade on the ground!

Middle East
Saudis Announce Halt to Yemen Bombing Campaign
Civil war. Religious War.  GWOT.  Which is it?

Recently  a Catholic blogger asked this key question:

Will the US join a religious war in the Gulf?
Drew Christiansen Ra'fat Aldajani  |  Apr. 20, 2015 NCR Today

Although Saudi Arabia is a key ally to the United States, it is important that the U.S. have honest conversations with the Saudis about issues that have been considered too sensitive to Saudi sensibilities, namely the long-term risk to the U.S. and the West from Saudi Arabia's missionary Wahhabism (a strict version of Sunni Islam). The worldwide network of madrassas (Quranic schools) and Wahhabi mosques funded by the Saudis have in many cases provided the theoretical and religious basis for militant and terrorist groups around the world who have turned theology into violence.

The conflicts across the Middle East have lately defied any coherent and meaningful U.S. policy. Getting embroiled in a religious war would be to step into a viper's tangle. Drone warfare against terrorists has moral complications all its own, and they need to be resolved. But the rationale for counterterrorism is clear.

Involvement in the Saudi-Sunni war vs. Iran-Shiite battle for regional power, by contrast, is a destination amply marked with signs: Danger ahead. Under these conditions, President Barack Obama's caution and deliberation are qualities the American public should welcome.

[Jesuit Fr. Drew Christiansen is former editor of America magazine and a professor of ethics at Georgetown University. Ra'fat Aldajani is a Palestinian-American writer and commentator.]

More troubling news along with the announced end to bombing is the sending in of the Saudi Kings' forces. For a gung ho but interesting history of how this control force came about check out:
Military & Defense More: Saudi Arabia Military Defense Bahrain
Saudi Arabia's elite National Guard has been ordered to take part in the war in Yemen

    Jeremy Bender

    Apr. 21, 2015, 11:32 AM    2,388 4   

Read more:

Many would like to see diplomacy take the place of bombing and killing of civilians.
UN chief urges immediate ceasefire, political solution in Yemen
WASHINGTON – UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon has called for an immediate cessation of hostilities in Yemen, saying a political solution is the best way out of the conflict in the Arab country.

“I am calling for an immediate ceasefire in Yemen by all parties. It is time to support corridors for lifesaving aid and a passage to real peace,” the secretary-general said in a speech at the National Press Club in Washington, DC on Thursday night. “The United Nations-supported diplomatic process is the best way out of a drawn-out war with terrifying implications for regional stability.”

The UN chief also said the government in Riyadh is aware of the importance of dialogue in resolving the Yemeni crisis. “The Saudis have assured me that they understand there must be a political process,” he pointed out, calling on all Yemenis to participate in diplomacy. Ban further said that he was trying to find a new representative who can be immediately deployed" to the violence-wracked country. Jamal Benomar, the UN envoy to Yemen, has Wednesday resigned.

Hundreds have been killed while deliveries of humanitarian supplies were being blocked and UNICEF recently reported that one third of fighters in the country were children. “It is time to support corridors for lifesaving aid and a passage to real peace. The United Nations-supported diplomatic process is the best way out of a drawn-out war with terrifying implications for regional stability.”

The US policy in Yemen has been an abject failure, with drone deaths of civilians and even US citizens.  That needs to change, but apparently now Obama admin is more concerned about pleasing the Saudis.

According to Politico   (with apologies)

“Our involvement in Yemen is a direct function of the talks, and it’s a decision by the administration to try to reassure our Arab partners,” says Ilan Goldenberg, a former Obama State Department and Pentagon official specializing in the Middle East. “I’m not sure what we’re doing in Yemen is good Yemen policy. In fact I would probably venture that it’s bad Yemen policy. But I would say that it’s good U.S.-Saudi relationship policy.”

Any American effort to interdict arms shipments to Yemen would have the imprimatur of the United Nations: Last week, the international body approved an arms embargo authorizing member states to “immediately take necessary measures to prevent direct or indirect supply, sale or transfer” of arms to the Houthis, according to a U.N. news release.

Read more:

Just two hours ago Reuters reported more civilian deaths:
World | Tue Apr 21, 2015 3:13pm EDT
Related: World, Yemen
Two air strikes in Yemen kill at least 40 people, mostly civilians
Good to see the Saudi say they are ending the bombing, not so happy to see they are sending in ground forces.

Supporting the Saudis needs to end.  We need a sea change in US foreign policy.

 It has to come with working from the ground up to get a Congress that works for this instead of letting the War Profiteers fill   pockets and complicate policies with their greed.

We also need a Democratic President who will lead in that direction.  Who will that be?


The Wall Street Journal is all excited about the latest deal between some Corpadems and Repubs in the Senate:

The Wall Street Journal

A Lift for Free Trade
The Hatch-Wyden compromise deserves Congress’s approval.
April 16, 2015 7:13 p.m. ET

The big news Thursday was that Republicans and Democrats on the Senate Finance Committee had reached a deal to produce a compromise bill that would give President Obama the ability to negotiate free-trade agreements with the rest of the world. The deeper news, in our view, is that there are still Members of Congress fighting free trade’s progress, even as the clouds darken over the global economy. Consider:

Hell yeah there is opposition.  A secret 'deal' in Congress to provide cover for the secretly negotiated TTP.

Fight looms in Congress as many Democrats oppose fast-track trade authority
Michael Lindenber
ger Email
Published: April 16, 2015 6:11 pm

WASHINGTON–America’s largest companies cheered Thursday’s introduction in the Senate of a bipartisan bill granting President Obama the trade negotiation authority he’s asked for. Not cheering? Members of the President’s own party, especially in the House, who say the bill would cede too much authority to the presidency and fast-track what they say could be a disastrous free trade deal with Asia.

Thursday’s bipartisan bill would grant trade promotion authority to the president, who has said he wants to use it to speed approval of the Trans-Pacific Partnership. The authority means that trade deals worked out by the executive branch can only be approved or rejected, but not edited, once they are submitted to Congress.

As MB posted earlier there were6 Dem Senators unhappy with the 'compromise' plan.  Wyden's bandaid to 'retrain' displaced workers is a non-starter.  Ask my brother whose good middle class union factory job went south after NAFTA passed, and the retraing he received was for entry level jobs that flat did not exist.  He's working night retail stocking, didn't lose his house but has had bouts with depression and alcoholism along with his financial challenges.

Republicans in teh House Represent Your District?

There are quite a few Dems in the House against any effort to Fast Track, but now is the time for those in Republican districts to join in as well:

Rep. Brad Sherman, D-Calif., said the ability to kill the bill in 2015 will likely come down to Republican members of the tea party or other populists.

“The key is whether we see organization and opposition among the Republican populists,” he said.

Several House members predicted that will happen. Among the reasons they believe some Republicans will oppose the bill and the TPP: The former cedes too much constitutional authority to the executive branch, they said. What’s more, the TPP would put too much downward pressure on wages for American workers and give foreign companies the right to protest environmental laws without having to sue in U.S. courts.

But for big business, the trade authority makes sense no matter who is in the White House. America’s largest companies see the prospect of easier trade with some of the largest and fastest-growing economies in the world as a major plus.

Oh. Big business sees it as a major plus. Greattttt.  BB, with the CEO's already rolling in dough in the 'recovery', who pay few taxes and high wads of cash offshore instead of creating jobs here.  Yeah, they absolutely would LOVE what we have learned is a stepping stone to multinational corp rule against environmental and labor regulations.

So if you live in a Republican represented district, call.  Dem district, call.  Write a letter to the editor.  Congratulate those who are opposing Fast Track.  Protect our chance to have Congressional debate on TPP!

From Fight For the Future

Congress: Don't betray democracy!
No "Fast Track" for the TPP!
Congress is pushing legislation right now that would "Fast Track" the Trans-Pacific Partnership—a secretive agreement negotiated behind closed doors by government bureaucrats and more than 600 corporate lobbyists. It threatens everything you care about: democracy, jobs, the environment, and the Internet.[Learn More]



Rachel Maddow had Elizabeth Warren on last night for a great segment where EW talks about issues that should be front and center in campaigns going forward.

Warren was clearly a Democratic Party partisan with her comments, obviously intent on rallying the base around issues that matter to progressives and wanting the party to focus on them as well.  

Maddow showed the letter penned by Warren after Citi and others threatened to cut off funding to Dems because of Warren's criticism.  Rachel said that when that letter went out supporters who often respond with as much as $100,000 Warren asked them to contribute the $30,000 to the DSCC that Citi and others were threatening to withhold if she did not pull back from her criticism.

Rachel told Warren something to the effect ' the reason  there is such a clamor from people who are after you to run for President  even though you don't want to is  because they are worried about the Democrats chances of holding on to the Presidency and it going Republican and the Senate staying  Republican, would put you in a position of   having no leverage at all .'

EW says that issues are what truly divide us from the Republicans, and that's where we should spend our energy. Republicans already attacking Dodd Frank this soon after the financial crisis. Give us a chance, give us a majority, and we will bring down student loan rates and more. On Social Security we will take care of funding, EXPAND Social Security. We had a vote on this, now can go to American people and campaign on this. There is a clear difference on this between parities, accountability of financial sector....


 And for some reason cannot get the vid to embed. Copied and pasted it just below here and now cigar. There was  no https so no s to remove. Anyone able to help?

Good stuff.  Sorry, no transcript yet.

The Rachel Maddow Show 3/31/15
Senator Elizabeth Warren pushes Democrats to compete on issues
Senator Elizabeth Warren talks with Rachel Maddow about the differences between Democrats and Republicans on popular issues like student loans and the minimum wage, and why she thinks emphasizing those distinctions is key to Democratic political success.
Duration: 9:45

Many times.

My apologies for the snarky title.

But yes, HRC said she was not running! 'No, I am not running, need time away.' ' Not going to run. '  Remember those times?

Lost count of how many times.  Still, looks like she didn't mean it, or at the time she said it she meant it, or? Who knows?

But she said it many times.

Hundreds say Run Warren Run

300,000 people have signed a petition to get Warren to run.   Press releases have gained national attention. Voters are learning more and more about the progressive wing of the Democratic Party and its courageous leaders.

Dem leaders are watching this effort. Will it influence them to change? Get better results than the last election?

It's an effort to restore enthusiasm, put progressive influence on the Democratic Party, lobby for a primary, an effort to bring together many who are unhappy with the PTB, who want to work with, as Warren once said"....people who want to fight back."  

The effort can only strengthen support for Elizabeth Warren, who is under attack by the right wing, by the banks, by the oligarchs. This effort can strengthen her voice in the Senate as she continues to introduce progressive legislation, on the national stage as she calls out Wall Street and works for the people. People want her to run for
President. She got creds!

A similar campaign produced her Senate run and can help get her re-elected when the time comes.

The fugging Republicans are after granny again, and also her grandson who is profoundly disabled. And they are also after you and me, and anyone who makes less money than their benefactors.  You know the old, the sick, and the rest of the 99%.

Tiresome as it is to have to re-educate people about their opposition to Social Security and Medicare we can, and should stop them.

I personally like  National Committee to Preserve Social Security and Medicare on Facebook for graphics and talking points to share.


Senator Sherrod Brown has been working to strengthen social security, and was interviewed by Tom Hartman about the latest Republican fail.  Sorry, no transcript....

Published on Jan 8, 2015

Thom Hartmann talks with Senator Sherrod Brown, U.S. Senator (D-OH), Website: about Republican legislation critics say could put millions of disabled and elderly Americans at risk and sets the stage for further attacks aimed at the wider program.

During the interview Senator Brown shares some interesting facts about the Republican positions, House Rules, and possible Senate Rules changes as well. Good stuff.

What can we do to Strenghten Social Security?

New book out explains....

Social Security Works!: Why Social Security Isn’t Going Broke and How Expanding It Will Help Us All Paperback – January 21, 2015
by Nancy Altman (Author), Eric Kingson (Author), & 1 more
6 customer reviews
See all 2 formats and editions

    $11.85 Read with our free app
    $12.47 23 Used from $10.46

Get behind Sherrod Brown, Elizabeth Warren, Bernie Sanders to fight this.

Besides educating and building up the citizen lobbying to fight this we can also support President Obama in getting that veto pen ready.  Of course he has shown himself to willing to bargain over Social Security and Medicare in the past, but now? Stay tuned...


Veto veto veto!  The Cromnibus sucks in so many ways. To say there are some good things in it as a way to justify it is the height of silliness. Cuts pensions, Pell Grants, allows more money into elections, but hey, at least the banksters get more freedom!

Will all the cuts in the bill comes the ultimate slap in the face.

Published on
Friday, December 12, 2014
Common Dreams
Buried Within Omnibus Bill, a 'Long-Term Blank Check for War Spending'
Analysts warn that "emergency" war spending fund, which was supposed to be temporary, has become permanent fixture that inflates Pentagon's budget
Sarah Lazare, staff writer
The bill approves $554 billion overall in Pentagon spending—in keeping with the trajectory of a country that spends more on the military than the next 11 countries combined. As Dave Gilson points out in Mother Jones, this sum means that total Pentagon funding during 2015 is " close to what it got during the height of the Iraq War" and "close to its highest level since World War II."
Furthermore, Lindsay Koshgarian points out for National Priorities Project, included within the bill is a "spending spree for defense contractors," which includes $479 million for F-35s and war ships. In addition, the bill green-lights $5 billion for the expanding U.S.-led war in Iraq and Syria,despite the fact that that military operation still has not been approved—or even subject to real debate—in Congress.
How does this square with what needs to be done to offset climate change?

Austerity for us, bonanza for the 1%.  That's our President, that's our Party.  What a country.

A long-term blank check for “war” spendingCenter for Public Integrity
By Julia Harte 14 hours ago
The U.S. military's budget request now pending on Capitol Hill includes a particularly notable oddity inside the special fund meant to support combat operations in Iraq and Afghanistan: a new $810 million U.S. defense initiative to "reassure" Europeans of their security in the wake of Vladimir Putin's Crimean land grab.

This is not how America’s war budget – otherwise known as the Overseas Contingency Operations (OCO) fund – is supposed to work.The White House in 2011 reaffirmed that the OCO, originally established in 2001 under a different name, was for “temporary and emergency requirements” associated with U.S. combat operations in Iraq and Afghanistan. Now, many experts say its continued use is emblematic of a five-year collapse in Washington's fiscal discipline.

The OCO budget isn't subject to spending limits that cap the rest of the defense budget for the next seven years; it's often omitted altogether from tallies of how much the military spends each year; and as an "emergency" fund, it's subject to much less scrutiny than other military spending requests.

This sort of special war funding was supposed to decline and then disappear as combat operations in Iraq and Afghanistan wound down. But that target has receded, if not disappeared altogether, as the OCO fund has become a larger catchall -- a slush fund used by the military services, by lawmakers, and by the White House to escape budgetary constraints, officials and independent experts say.

This is not how things are supposed to work.

GOTV is not enough . Clearly.  What next?


Somebody help me here with what should be done as we revisit the horrors brought to light in the release of the Senate torture report.  People were hired to force things up people's rectums in order to keep us safe. I don't want to be safe that bad.

I want justice, as do my friends around the world. Sad thing is many of my friends are from countries that have also allowed torture after 9-11. We all must band together for accountability. What to do?

Here in this country seems The Democratic Party leadership decided not to prosecute Bushco torture because some, like Nancy Pelosi and John Kerry,  probably signed off on it and therefore were complicit.

But what about incoming President Obama? Because of the complicity of those Dem leaders did he decide that the Party must be protected above considerations of human rights and common decency?  He did immediately come into office  and approved extrajudicial killings in the ME,  eventually even including several US citizens.

So now with the release of the Senate CIA torture report intro, when Germans and Belgian and British friends of mine are rightly calling for justice, what can be said? That it's complicated?  That here in the US we have overriding political considerations that trump this?

One professor says no, that we are obligated to prosecute.

Other international law experts and rights advocates who have long supported an accounting for the C.I.A.'s behavior concurred with that assessment.

Jordan J. Paust, a professor at the University of Houston Law Center, said the report “adds another layer of proof of serial international criminality that was manifestly authorized” during President George W. Bush’s two terms in office.

In a commentary on, Professor Paust said both the Convention Against Torture and the 1949 Geneva Conventions require the United States to prosecute or extradite any person “reasonably accused of having criminal responsibility” for the documented instances of torture.

Another says that Mr. Obama is trying to avoid endless legal troubles after leaving office
Why Obama Won’t Prosecute Torturers

They clearly violated the law.
By Eric Posner

Obama’s problem is that if he can prosecute Republican officeholders for authorizing torture, then the next Republican president can prosecute Obama and his subordinates for the many questionable legal actions of the Obama administration—say, the drone strike that killed Anwar al-Awlaki and three other American citizens. Sen. Ted Cruz cites the drone strike as one of 76 alleged illegal actions by the Obama administration. You don’t have to believe every one of Cruz’s charges to see that Obama and his subordinates could spend years under investigation after he leaves office if a Republican president thought such a course of action politically expedient. Although a jury would be just as unlikely to convict Obama officials as it would be to convict Bush officials, the problem is that the investigations themselves are extraordinarily burdensome. The prospect of criminalization of political behavior raises the stakes for elections because if you or your boss loses an election, you not only lose the trappings of office but gain the prospect of being investigated for the rest of your life. This will encourage officeholders to take ever more extreme actions to stay in office.

That is the lesson of unstable democracies—Turkey, right now, is the best example, where President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has used criminal investigations to harass his opponents. But we have our own experience of this in the United States. In the wake of the Watergate scandal, Congress passed a statute that authorized an independent counsel—uncontrolled by the president—to investigate wrongdoing in the executive branch. A series of independent counsels wreaked extraordinary havoc investigating the Iran-Contra scandal in the Reagan administration and the Whitewater, Monica Lewinsky, and related scandals in the Clinton White House. While there is little doubt that in some cases high-level executive officials broke the law, Congress allowed the independent counsel statute to lapse because the disruption caused by these investigations was worse than the behavior that was investigated.

The upshot is that, hidden in our unwritten constitution is a norm that Congress cannot criminalize certain behavior that the president authorizes on national-security grounds. This is just how our system works, driven by an implicit deal between the parties to keep political warfare within boundaries.

Prosecute We Must
No. We must not leave it at that. We are better than that.
CIA torture report: human rights groups call for prosecutions– live
LIVE Updated 12m ago

Amnesty USA director says ‘torture is a crime and those responsible must be brought to justice’ after report details controversial CIA methods

    ACLU calls for special prosecutor
    Because it might work: the CIA rationale for torture
    How the torture report could unravel prosecutions

#ShutItDown For Mike Brown: Demonstrators in more than 170 U.S. cities stop traffic as they protest.
and its not over.

 #HandsUpWalkOut FB page

Monday: Mass Walkout #HandsUpWalkOut
We are asking you to support a mass walk out on Monday at 12:01pm CST—the time that Mike Brown was murdered.Folks can put their hands up as they leave their job, schools or wherever they are and gather together.
Please share widely on social media using #HandsUpWalkOut.
Not only is the President meeting with his cabinet today with militarization of police on the agenda, but campuses across the country are planning actions in solidarity with #Ferguson.


More info, in an email from World Can't Wait this am

Carl Dix said, in calling for Monday's Walk-out for School & Work #HandsUpWalkOut:

“The Ferguson Action Team, a coalition of activists which has been coordinating protests around the murder of Michael Brown, has called for nationwide walkouts on Monday, December 1st...

“What’s at stake here is whether the color of a person's skin should determine how they live, or even whether they live. It comes down to what kind of society we want to live in in and what kind of people we need to be. If things are allowed to go back to the normal routine, it will mean going along with a routine that includes wanton murder of Black youth by police. But if we continue to stand up and declare our determination to refuse to accept this routine, we can be part of bringing a whole different way for people to live into being.”





Monday, December 1at 1:00pm in EST
Starts within an hour

anywhere and eveywhere


Photobucket Pictures, Images and PhotosCredit:

Lawyers for Michael Brown's family condemn the handling of the grand jury case in the shooting death of the 18-year-old, calling its presentation of evidence deeply flawed.
I join the many of us on this Thanksgiving who are still  feeling outraged at the travesty of justice that is ongoing in Ferguson and across the US with the violence of local law enforcement supported by militarization seemingly allowed by, encouraged or acquiesced to by Congress and the Executive.

So it was with interest that I read the following:
Justice Department likely to impose reforms on Ferguson police

 By Timothy M. Phelps contact the reporter

Those hoping the federal government will criminally prosecute Ferguson, Mo., police Officer Darren Wilson in the killing of an unarmed black man are likely to be disappointed, but chances are strong that the Justice Department will impose significant reforms on the city's police department through its ongoing civil investigation.
Its been heartening to see that hundreds  have protested after the Grand Jury decision was announced.
Protesters March, Block Highways in 170 Cities Over Police Abuse
Protests against police brutality have erupted in more than 170 cities across the United States. In Los Angeles more than 100 people were arrested. From Oakland, California, to Providence, Rhode Island, protesters walked onto major highways and shut them down. In New York, protesters blocked traffic across the city including at the the Lincoln Tunnel, West Side Highway, the Manhattan Bridge, Williamsburg Bridge and the Queens Midtown Tunnel. More than 1,000 protesters marched on the FDR drive, at one point shutting down traffic in both directions. Protester Henoc Montes was among thousands who rallied in Times Square.
I'm dealing with bronchitis so missed participating, but thought I could at least contribute something with a diary.  Its no secret I have almost zero overall faith in AG Holder.....
"9 Billion Dollar Witness" Comes Out re: JP Morgan Chase, DOJ, WH
but the LA Times points to one area where the DOJ under Mr. Holder has shined: investigations of local pds for violations of people's rights.

We have seen this in NM with the recent conclusion to the investigation of some notorious members and policies of the Albuquerque Police Department.

More from the LA Times:

Under Holder, the Justice Department has been particularly aggressive in such investigations, opening 20 of them in the last five budget years, twice as many as under his Republican predecessors during a comparable period, according to Justice Department statistics. During the same period, it prosecuted more than 300 officers for misconduct. It has entered into formal agreements, called consent decrees, with nine departments, including New Orleans and Albuquerque.

In Ferguson and surrounding St. Louis County, they will probably be looking for evidence of excessive use of force, unreasonable searches, racial profiling in arrests or traffic stops, and other problems. The department's training and use of discipline also may be examined.

"It can go to every corner of the police department's operation," Yeomans said. Bringing a case against Ferguson should not be difficult, he added.

"We've seen there are problems and the police department's response to the protesters demonstrated some serious problems about what the police department thinks is appropriate use of force," he said. "There is a strong basis for believing that there will be systemic changes to the Ferguson Police Department."

The article goes into the differences between success in bringing Civil cases vs Criminal cases against PD's that I found interesting. Hope you will read the whole thing.

Those of us frustrated and outraged by the events in Ferguson and the militarization of police nationwide are not a patient bunch.

So in the sea of bad news about the Grand Jury in Ferguson I was glad to learn about these consent decrees that are often the type of outcome the DOJ produces which might begin to yield the kind of change needed and wanted in our local law enforcement agencies.

Never give up.


Mon Nov 24, 2014 at 05:10 PM PST

NYTimes: Hagel "Removed" From DOD

by divineorder

That was how the writer from the New York times described it. Of course he will stay around until a replacement is confirmed.

Have been frustrated for years at Dem Presidents who appoint Republicans, and Hegel was no exception.

But not in a thousand years did I ever think he would be gone this quickly.



Hagel Resigns Under Pressure as Global Crises Test Pentagon
New York Times     -‎26 minutes ago‎   


Administration officials said that Mr. Obama made the decision to remove Mr. Hagel, the sole Republican on his national security team, last Friday after a series of meetings between the two men over the past two weeks.

The officials characterized the decision as a recognition that the threat from the militant group Islamic State will require different skills from those that Mr. Hagel, who often struggled to articulate a clear viewpoint and was widely viewed as a passive defense secretary, was brought in to employ.

Mr. Hagel, a combat veteran who was skeptical about the Iraq war, came in to manage the Afghanistan combat withdrawal and the shrinking Pentagon budget in the era of budget sequestrations.

Now, however, the American military is back on a war footing, although it is a modified one. Some 3,000 American troops are being deployed in Iraq to help the Iraqi military fight the Sunni militants of the Islamic State, even as the administration struggles to come up with, and articulate, a coherent strategy to defeat the group in both Iraq and Syria.

Silly me, had hoped he was being let go for pressuring the President into another losing battle, one in a long series of US failures using military force.
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