Sunday, February 28, 2010

I am totally Torn Apart by the Abortion Issue and I have no Resolution

Abortion is a very strong and volatile issue in America. In some ways, I think it is tearing our country apart. I have been thinking about my view of Abortion for a few months. I do not believe in Abortions for myself. I believe children are precious and give our lives meaning. They are a gift from God. However, I also have to step outside myself and think of other women. I cannot make choices for other women. I also do not believe in owning a gun, but I support anyone who owns a gun because it is their constitional right to own one.

Because of all the controversy/discussion about abortion, I have been reading the statistics. Since the seventies, there have been an average of 1 million abortions performed in the USA each year. Since Roe v Wade, we are talking about 30Million babies. When I looked up the reasons women are having abortions(see below), the reasons given indicate they are having them more as a convenience vs Health Issues.

Over the years, I only knew two people who had abortions and admitted to them. At the times of their decisions, both were young, confused, of the 70's Love Child generation and unmarried or between marriages. The only way I could reconcile their actions (not that they were asking for my reconciliation) was by thinking their children would not have been properly cared for and who was I to judge anyway. Today, both are divorced and live alone. The children they did have are adults now and have their own lives. No one talks about their decisions. I don't believe their own children know. I believe they regret their decision and blame their decisions on misspent youth. I do believe they had several abortions. I don't believe they would have had abortions if they were not legal.

While I am a strong supporter of Women's Rights, I have to say that I am strongly against Abortion for me and my children/my immediate family. I believe Abortion is ending a life. I cannot support it any more than I could support Euthanasia for the elderly. However, I cannot make choices for other people. This entire issue tears my heart apart. As I say this, do not confuse my view with the anti-abortion view. I do not condone the anger, the violence, the murders/attacks on abortion clinics. Those actions must be stopped.

The most significant issue is, the vast majority of abortions are performed on unmarried women (94%). Most live in poverty. Most do not properly use birth control. The highest ratio of abortions are performed on single, black, unmarried women (three times more than white women); however black women have a third more pregnancies. The abortion rate of women living below the poverty level is four times that of women above the poverty level. This is partly due to the rate of unintended pregnancies for women living below the poverty level also being four times that of women above the poverty level. (e.g.: Young, Unmarried, Poor, Uneducated, Unintended, No proper use of Birth Control) (note: one additional factor. Those that have abortions often have multiple abortions)

Unintended Pregnancies:
White: 40% Black: 69% Hispanics: 54%

Reasons given: (Only 6% of pregnancies by married women ended in abortion)
25.5% Want to postpone childbearing
21.3% Cannot afford a baby
14.1% Has relationship problem or partner does not want pregnancy
12.2% Too young; parent(s) or other(s) object to pregnancy
10.8% Having a child will disrupt education or job
7.9% Want no (more) children
6.1% Risk to fetal health; Risk to Maternal Health
2.1% Other


Abortions By ethnicity:
White: 55% (167 per 1,000 live births; 10 per 1,000 women)
Black: 35% (503 per 1000 live births; 30 per 1,000 women)
Hispanic/Other: 10%

Pregnancy Rates in lifetime:
White: 2.7 pregnancies; 69% live births (12% abortion rate)
Blacks: 4.2 pregnancies; 50% live births (37% abortion rate)
Hispanics: 4.2 pregnancies; 67% live births (19% abortion rate)
References:
Abortions in the US
Abortion Statistics
Age and Family Structure, by Race/Ethnicity and Place of Residence
CDC Report - More Unmarried Women in their 20s are having Babies
Facts on Induced Abortion in the United States

Saturday, February 27, 2010

Limbaugh says to those without Healthcare: "Get Rich or DIE Trying!"

Right Wing/Republican Pundit, the NEW Leader of the Conservative/Republican party, Rush Limbaugh is laughing and LAUGHING at the plight of the 80 million Americans without health insurance.


According to Rush Limbaugh, if you don't have the money to pay for dental care, then you should eat applesauce. Limbaugh said on his Feb. 25 radio show, "well, what's wrong with using a dead person's teeth? Aren't the Democrats big into recycling? Save the planet? And so what? So if you don't have any teeth, so what? What's applesauce for? Isn't that why they make applesauce?"


While the Democrats bring up example after example of American Citizens in trouble due to lack of coverage/the growing expense of coverage, Limbaugh laughs. Limbaugh mocked the story of transplant patient on Medicare who will have to pay, out of pocket, their own healthcare bills after three years, without the help of insurance. Limbaugh said, "This guy is -- he about had an emotional breakdown 'cause he was told he's gotta start paying his own medical bills after three years. He gets a free transplant; he gets a free after-care for three years and then he's on his own, and he's mad and thinks he's getting screwed."


Limbaugh is advocating people get rich and pay for their own healthcare, forget insurance. He said, "I'm one of the 47 million uninsured, and I'm -- look at me in one way, I'm providing leadership. I'm advocating a system get reformed so that people can afford it." Limbaugh told one caller who can't afford $6,000 to treat his broken wrist: "Well, you shouldn't have broken your wrist."


Limbaugh, equating Americans to Dogs said, "There's no federal dog health care plan out there and healthcare for pets is working fine."


It is clear. Conservatives/Republicans DO NOT CARE about the American People when it comes to Healthcare! Healthcare costs continue to rise out of sight! Healthcare coverage continues to diminish! And the Conservatives/Republicans, JUST DO NOT CARE! Or as Limbaugh says, "Let them Get Rich!"

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Republicans LIE about Reconciliation! They've Used it 13 Times!

The Republicans are LYING again! They are calling "Reconciliation" the "Nuclear Option." Sen. Senator Judd Gregg (R-NH) and other republicans refer to the use of the reconciliation process as "an unprecedented power grab," and the "politics" of Hugo Chavez. They are using these terms to scare the American Public and demonize the passing of Healthcare Reform. These Republicans are puppets for the Healthcare Industry.


Sen. Gregg has a short memory. He forgets that the Republicans have used Reconciliation 13 times. Examples include: They used it in 2001 and 2003 to pass the GIANT Bush Tax Cuts (especially to the rich/big business which has led us into our current economic tsunami!). They used it again in 2005 to permit oil drilling in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge.


In fact, Sen. Gregg spoke on the floor of the Senate in 2005 to support the use of Reconciliation by the Republicans. He said it was "in the Senate Rules" and it was fine for "Majority to Rule." He said, “The president asked for it, and we’re trying to do what the president asked for.”

If the President and the Democrats decide to use Budget Reconciliation, they need only 51 Votes. There are 58 Senators. This is good news for the American People. Healthcare Reform can pass afterall. The Republicans who are long time supporters of the Healthcare Lobby and the party of NO do not even have to participate.

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Luis Ramirez's Kick in the Head Murderer Granted Parole!

Derrick Donchak, the man who witnesses said wore brass knuckles when he sucker punched Luis Ramirez in the head, knocking him unconscious, so Brandon Piekarsky could deliver the final kick to the head, has been granted parole! This "cute" murderer has "learned his lesson in only 3 months".... for MURDER!! This is the same Derrick Donchak that dressed as a Border Patrol Agent after the murder and while he awaited trial, at a Halloween Party! He posted these pictures on his MySpace page! This is the same Derrick Donchak that was placed in "solitary confinement for misbehavior" for two months after misbehaving his 1st month in prison. The judge said he "learned his lesson" over the next three months??? Then granted him parole????
I wonder how many Latinos the Judge has released early, after only 3 months, saying he KNOWS they learned their lesson! This JUDGE is truly biased!
Let's hope the HATE CRIME charges move forward for both Donchak and Piekarsky. Luis Ramirez and his children deserve Justice!
Republican Herald reports:
Derrick M. Donchak can go home, a Schuylkill County judge ruled Tuesday in paroling him on charges stemming from the fatal beating of an illegal Mexican immigrant in July 2008 in Shenandoah. After a 30-minute hearing, Schuylkill County President Judge William E. Baldwin granted parole to Donchak, 20, of Shenandoah, saying he had changed his behavior after being placed in solitary confinement for more than two months for violating county prison rules.

"You have demonstrated that you learned a lesson in the last three months," Baldwin told Donchak, who was clad in a prison jumpsuit, handcuffs, leg shackles and a belt. However, Baldwin warned Donchak that he must follow the rules of his parole or face more prison time. "You have shown a complete lack of sensitivity," Baldwin warned Donchak. "If that attitude reappears, you'll be back in there pretty fast."

A prison spokesman said late Tuesday afternoon that Donchak already had been released.

Donchak said little while being led out of the courtroom after the hearing, replying, "Yes, sir," when asked if he would follow the rules and spend more time with his family. During the hearing, he said the misconduct was not is fault. "What happened with the write-up was a case of mistaken identity," he testified. "I was sleeping."
Prison officials, however, found that Donchak participated in "fishing" on Aug. 29 by accepting contraband - in his case, deodorant - dropped into his cell by a sheet attached to a long rope.
"He jumped up and started yelling and cursing," corrections officer William Schweikert testified. Prison officials found him guilty of insolence, giving a false statement and refusing to obey an order, and placed him in solitary confinement for 70 days.

Earlier in August, Donchak had been confined to his cell for 24 hours due to having contraband - in this case plastic forks and spoons and an excessive number of styrofoam cups - in there, according to corrections officer David Carduff. Prosecutors had opposed Donchak's parole due to the violations. "There have been multiple misconducts," Assistant District Attorney A.J. Serina argued to Baldwin. "We believe the defendant hasn't demonstrated he's capable of abiding by rules." Serina declined to comment on the parole after the hearing.

Donchak served the minimum seven months of the prison term Baldwin imposed on him after he was convicted on May 1, 2009, after a five-day trial of simple assault and alcohol-related offenses in connection with the July 12, 2008, beating of Luis Eduardo Ramirez Zavala on a Shenandoah street. Ramirez, 25, of Shenandoah, died two days later at Geisinger Medical Center, Danville. Donchak's co-defendant, Brandon J. Piekarsky, 18, of Shenandoah Heights, also was convicted of simple assault and alcohol-related offenses in connection with Ramirez's beating. Baldwin sentenced him to six months and seven days to 23 months in prison. Piekarsky already has been paroled.

Both Donchak and Piekarsky face federal hate crime charges and potential life sentences in connection with Ramirez's death. In that case, U.S. District Judge A. Richard Caputo on Tuesday granted Donchak until April 1 to file pre-trial motions, and said he would schedule the trial after ruling on them. Piekarsky on Tuesday asked for a similar extension; Caputo has not yet ruled on that request.
Donchak's release from the county prison means he can go home, although he will stay there on home detention pursuant to Caputo's Jan. 13 order allowing him to be released before trial. Piekarsky also is free from prison on home detention pending trial.
In a related case, Matthew R. Nestor, William Moyer and Jason Hayes, former Shenandoah police chief, lieutenant and officer, respectively, face federal charges for allegedly obstructing the investigation of the Ramirez beating. Caputo on Friday granted them additional time to file pre-trial motions and indicated he would schedule their trial after ruling on any motions that are filed.

Sunday, February 21, 2010

2012 Republican Prez Candidate Pawlenty Reveals Conservative Agenda: The TRUTH - CHANGE EXPECTATIONS! NO MORE MEDICARE! MORE TAX CUTS TO RICH!!

I saw Tim Pawlenty on Meet the Press this morning. Hearing his answers to questions brought back memories of George W. Bush and what would happen if we elected a Republican again. Tim convinced me the core Republican agenda has not changed. They want tax cuts for the rich and additional ease on regulation for big business. They want to reduce Social Security/Medicare.

Listening to him reminded me that most Americans today are forgetting about what happened during the 8 years of GW Bush's reign. Pawlenty wants to give tax cuts and deregulation to rich/big business.

Today, Pawlenty said, "the way that you create jobs in this country is get businesses who provide the jobs to have--make it more likely that they're going to start a business, grow a business, buy equipment, build buildings, conduct research, commercialize the results of that research and grow jobs."

Pawlenty's own hometown Minnesota newspaper reported, "Governor Pawlenty's budget is bad news for low-income Minnesotans who rely on state health care and for mayors already struggling to balance their own budgets, but good news for corporations paying high taxes."

Then, to top it off, when asked what he would CUT in the Federal Government to bring the deficit under control. Here is the question and response he provided today:

MR. GREGORY: So would you be prepared to cut entitlement benefits, cut Medicare, raise the, the, the age for Social Security or cut
benefits for Social Security?
GOV. PAWLENTY: Here's the math. The federal government takes in $2.2 trillion a year revenues, all sources for all purposes. Their total unfunded liabilities, including entitlements, including pensions, including the whole bill, is $65 trillion. There is no way you can make that math work. So the truth of the matter is, is we are going to have to reform entitlement programs. I've done this in Minnesota, for example, with our bus drivers in the Twin Cities. They had post-retiree health insurance benefits, and the premise was this, if we made a promise to you, we'll keep it. We're not going to cut people off in terms of their pensions if we've made a promise to you. But for people who are new to the system, who are coming on, where we can fairly give them notice and fairly change expectations, the system's going to change. And we did it.
Pawlenty's statement made my skin crawl. He may have plans to run for President in 2012. This is a Republican leader, the party of NO, saying NO to Healthcare Reform, and INSTEAD longing for the GW Bush days. The days when rich/big business received the most tax cuts, the most deregulation, which left us in the biggest Recession/Depression since the Great Depression of the 1930s. (We also lost civil liberties, but that is an entirely different blog.) Considering we entered into GW's reign with the biggest budget surplus in history, that is quite a feat.

We have a "new poor" in America. As the NY Times reports, the new poor are those of us over 50, who may have lost their jobs due to the downturn in the economy, have exhausted their unemployment compensation, do not have the "look" of desirable new prospects for Hot new jobs and are not old enough for Social Security. These folks have spent twenty, thirty, forty years working and contributing to the economy, people long accustomed to the comforts of middle-class life who are now relying on public assistance for the first time in their lives — potentially for years to come.

These fifty-somethings are the people Tim Pawlenty is talking about...the people who will be "new to the system", who have not gotten there yet. Tim Pawlenty/Republicans/Conservatives political agenda is to cut us all off before we enter into the Social Security/Medicare system, the system we have supported for forty plus years.

My husband and I both heard the words come out of Pawlenty's mouth this morning. My husband, a left leaning independent/centrist, who has been questioning President Obama of late for not getting enough done, was suddenly flashed back to the times of GWB. He shook his head. "We can't go back to THAT!"

My husband and I were both impacted by the recession, down-sizing and our dreadful economy. We were both layed off from our respective jobs over the last year or so. However, I do have a pension from my company and a small consulting business I own which contributes to our overall income. Additionally, he does have a small pension. However, we are saving and counting the years until we receive our duly paid for Social Security and Medicare. I have contributed over 40 years into social security. If you count my childhood years in the migrant camps, I have worked over 50 years of my life. My husband, over 30 years contributing into Social Security. Now, the Republicans want to take it away from us??? Plus they want Comprehensive Healthcare Reform to FAIL!

What the Republicans/Conservative agenda FAILS to REALIZE is, all of us fifty-somethings have contributed to Social Security ALL OF OUR LIVES. We do NOT want to believe it was some kind of Madoff style Ponzi scheme! DO NOT EVEN THINK ABOUT TAKING SOCIAL SECURITY AWAY so you can privatize it to your Healthcare Provider friends/PAC contributors form of Social Security. DO NOT CHANGE PLANS unless you are going to pay us back for all we have contributed over the last 40 years, with interest!

For many of us, as illustrated in the NY Times article, finding jobs/new careers is difficult for us "fifty-somethings." Contrary to what the ANTI websites portray, we fifty-somethings are NOT competing with those they term "illeegals." We are not looking for AgJobs, Construction Jobs, or anything in the fast food industry. We are primarily business people who worked in business all of our lives. People like Jean Eisen (57), a proficient salesperson, now out of work, existing on her husband's disability check and food from food banks.

Some businesses do not want to hire domestically. They prefer to automate or outsource offshore. These are the same businesses Tim Pawlenty/Republicans/Conservatives want to provide more tax cuts, more deregulation. The truth for the fifty somethings is, we want Businesses to hire domestically, hire experience. Don't outsource off-shore. We will continue to contribute to the economy domestically. We are loyal. We are patriots. We are hard workers. AND PLEASE DO NOT TAKE SOCIAL SECURITY AND MEDICARE AWAY, just as we are approaching our time.

Listen to this good and hard: DO NOT OFF-SHORE. HIRE EXPERIENCE. HIRE DEDICATED AMERICANS TO THESE JOBS. The hard working "illeegals" are NOT IMPACTING US!!! They are NOT taking away OUR Jobs! We need people to perform the AgJobs, the Construction Jobs, the Meat Packing Jobs. However, ALLOW US to continue OUR JOBS!! DO NOT OUTSOURCE OUR JOBS OFF-SHORE!

Listen to this most of all: DO NOT ELIMINATE OUR SOCIAL SECURITY AND MEDICARE. DO NOT EVEN CONSIDER IT! WE HAVE PAID INTO IT ALL OF OUR LIVES!!! DON'T TOUCH IT! DON'T YOU DARE!!! (This means YOU Tim Pawlenty and ALL YOU REPUBLICANS/CONSERVATIVES who WISH to get back in Power!!!)

Saturday, February 20, 2010

Movie Review: "Shutter Island" starring Leonardo DiCaprio

As my long time readers know, my husband and I love to go to the movies. We usually go early on Saturdays because we like to avoid the crowds. Today, we saw "Shutter Island" starring Leonardo DiCaprio. I love him as an actor. I didn't always, but for some reason, I really love him now. I also love Gerard Butler, but that's another story/movie. We have recently seen Wolfman but it was not a great movie so I am not reviewing it.

Before I share my thoughts about the movie, let me talk a bit more about Leonardo and why I like him. He is handsome but not the handsome/sexy actor Gerard Butler is. There is something about Leo that draws me to his movies. What I like best is, during his movies, it doesn't feel like he is acting, it's more like we are seeing a portion of his life. He sweats and gets red eyes, he shivers, shakes, gets angry, curious, finds the answer, all part of this little slice of his life.

Now to the movie review: First, anyone who sees this movie needs to understand it is about 2 and a half hours long and there are so many twists and turns in it, you have to pay attention, both to the dialogue, the action and the innuendo. It's exhausting, but worthwhile if you are up for paying attention.

The movie is set in 1954. Two U.S. Marshals, Teddy Daniels (Leo) and his partner Chuck Aule (Mark Ruffalo), are called to investigate a missing patient at a mental hospital for the criminally insane on an island in Massachusetts. Teddy is seasick/vomiting on the boat trip to the island (sweating; red-faced; really sick) stating he hates being around water. When they arrive on the island, there is an immediate air of uneasiness, as if there is something suspicious about the island, the hospital, the staff and the missing patient report. Plus, some of the inmates are "out and about" as groundskeepers/ landscapers, whispering as the two marshals walk by.

The hospital's chief administrator, Dr. John Cawley (Ben Kingsley) is also suspicious. The two marshals begin their search for the missing patient. We learn the missing patient murdered her three children however she is delusional and doesn't realize what she has done. They search her room and find a cryptic note with the words "the secret of 4" and "67".

Teddy and Chuck begin the search of the island with guards as escorts. Storms start up and a hurricane hits the island. They stop their search. In the meantime, Teddy gets flash backs. His wife, like a ghost, keeps appearing and we learn that his wife and children died in a fire and this evil inmate of the hospital may have set the fire. Teddy also flashes back to his time as a soldier in WW2, capturing Nazi soldiers in a concentration camp full of dead Jewish bodies stacked high. We see the actions of the soldiers upon the Nazis and we wonder what kind of an impact this had on Teddy. We start questioning ourselves, why is he hallucinating? thinking of his wife? the fire? the missing inmate? The children who died in the concentration camp? Teddy gets headaches and the head doctor is giving him aspirin. Is he giving him aspirin? Or is he being "medicated?" Meanwhile the flashbacks keep happening. Next we see the prison warden who looks like a Gestapo commandant and eerily scary. Maybe because we also know this actor as the Captain from Monk and the Crazy Serial Killer from Silence of the Lambs.

Teddy goes to a staff meeting at the main house. It is revealed the missing patient is found. She explains her own insanity. But Teddy keeps having his illusions of his wife. He escapes and finds his way to the lighthouse. It becomes breathtaking and unbelievable at this point. Pant. Pant. Pant. Rush. Rush. Rush. What is happening.

Later, the two US Marshals decide to venture out on the island to find the missing patient on their own. They venture into the third building of the hospital containing the most delusional, dangerous patients. They find the murderer of Teddy's wife.

Then the mausoleum, the storm. The danger. What will happen next?

Attempting to go back to the lighthouse, Teddy's (Leo) partner falls from the cliff. Is he dead? Teddy ventures into some nearby caves. She is NOT the young patient in the hospital. Instread, she reveals she is actually a psychiatrist at the hospital and there is some evil plot by the government to discover some evil sort of brainwashing/lobotomy which would be instrumental in warfare, who cares about the impact on the public or how many people the secret government agencies will kill. These human experiments are all going on in the lighthouse. Is the government becoming just like Nazi Germany? Did Teddy take any of their meds (YES). Now he is worried he is getting brainwashed and medicated.

Back at the hospital, Dr. Cawley attempts to persuade Teddy to believe that he is delusional. He is a patient in the hospital. There is no government plot. Your wife was the one who was insane and murdered your children. You went insane after the murders. All you saw in the war did not help. Your partner Chuck is actually your psychiatrist. We were just trying to save you because you have become such a problem in the hospital that the Warden was going to lobotomize you. This is our last ditch efforts to save you from a lobotomy. Take more meds. Admit you are delusional. If you admit you are delusional, we will cure you. No. No. No. He can't believe it's true. Denial. Denial. Denial. Then he finally accepts this as truth.

Then, the last scene. He is sitting on the front stoop of the hospital steps talking to his partner/psychiatrist. He acts as if he is the US Marshall talking to his partner again, reverting back into his delusion. His partner/psychiatrist looks at Dr. Cawley and the warden, shakes his head. Dr. Cawley nods to the warden and to an intern who is carrying a towel and a giant needle. They escort Teddy away to his lobotomy.

Now here's what's weird. We don't know if he is imagining this, or if he is delusional, or if the warden/Dr. Cawley are conducting secret experiments. But Teddy's last words are, "is it better to be insane and righteous" (he is a US Marshall and the government is conducting all of these experiments and he is receiving a lobotomy) or insane and accepting of his crimes (he really did murder his wife who murdered his children and as long as he acknowledges this "truth" he doesn't receive a lobotomy). Teddy says this in such a way that he actually doesn't know the answer but in either case would prefer the former.

All in all, this movie left me with so many unanswered questions, that I now want to read the book. I did plan on laying by the pool doing a lot of reading this summer, so I think this is the first book I will read.

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Breaking News: TEABAGGER Domestic Terrorist Flies Plane into Building in Austin

Breaking News: TEABAGGER Joseph Stack, angry at the IRS, left a suicide note. READ HIS OWN WORDS! He closes with, "Well, Mr. Big Brother IRS man, let’s try something different; take my pound of flesh and sleep well." (chilling)
Latest News indicated Joseph Andrew Stack, a software engineer, set fire to his own home. His wife and daughter were rescued. Drudge and Fox are reporting the pilot crashed his plane into a building with an IRS office.
Epoch Times reports:
Plane Crashes Into Building in Austin, Texas Office Building
A small airplane crashed into the seven-story Echelon office in northwest Austin Texas, exploding and igniting the building. Eyewitness reports indicate that the pilot flew his Cherokee 140 over a neighboring apartment complex and rammed the office building at full speed.An NTSB report indicates that the pilot set his house on fire before taking off. The building he hit contains an IRS office, and a neighboring building contains an FBI office. There is some speculation that this was his intended target.


Initial reports are that the pilot might be Joseph Andrew Stack, a software engineer. His wife Cheryl and his daughter were rescued from the burning home.


“It was swooping down like it was going to buzz the apartments and then pull back up As soon as he cleared the apartments he just dropped down and we saw this ball of flame as tall or taller as the whole apartment complex itself.The eyewitness said the plane “was within feet of the top of the apartment complex.”
Another eyewitness said the plane crashed into the buiolding under full power.Initial reports are that one person in the building is missing and two have been hospitalized.

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Jury Permitted to Hear Caucasian Crew Leader's Words "I STABBED HIM!"

AP Reports:
GARDEN CITY, N.Y. — A jury will be permitted to hear testimony that a New York teenager, Jeffrey Conroy, admitted to police moments after the fatal knifing of Ecuadorean immigrant Marcelo Lucero that he was responsible, prosecutors said Tuesday. Jeffrey Conroy, 19, is the only one of seven teenagers charged with murder in the November 2008 stabbing of Marcelo Lucero near the Patchogue train station on Long Island. Two other teenagers have pleaded guilty to assault as a hate crime and other charges and have agreed to testify against their co-defendants. Conroy and four others are awaiting trial; all have pleaded not guilty. Conroy's trial is expected to start sometime in March.

The killing shone a national spotlight on the area's race relations; prosecutors contend Lucero's death was the culmination of an ongoing campaign that targeted Hispanic immigrants for violence. Since the killing, the U.S. Justice Department has said it is investigating hate crimes in Suffolk County and police response to them.

The Southern Poverty Law Center issued a report in September titled "Climate of Fear; Latino Immigrants in Suffolk County," cataloguing a litany of anti-immigrant attacks dating back a decade. State Supreme Court Justice Robert Doyle, in a Feb. 11 ruling released by prosecutors on Tuesday, said Conroy's comment to police only minutes after the attack that "I stabbed him" will be permitted at Conroy's trial. Doyle ruled that Conroy blurted out the admission while being searched for a knife and that "traditional Miranda warnings were not required."

Conroy and his six friends (the Caucasian Crew) were arrested within minutes of the midnight stabbing, only blocks away from where Lucero was killed. Defense attorney William Keahon did not immediately return a telephone call seeking comment. Doyle also ruled that defendant Kevin Shea's comments to detectives following the stabbing were admissible at trial. Shea's attorney did not immediately return a call for comment.
The two defendants who have already pleaded guilty admitted participating in other attacks on Hispanics, confessing they and their accomplices frequently used racial epithets when confronting victims. In one instance, a Hispanic man was shot with a BB gun.

Lucero, 37, came to the United States when he was 21. He was walking with a friend when they were confronted by a group of teens. His friend fled, but Lucero was surrounded, prosecutors say. He tried to fight back, flailing at the assailants with his belt before being fatally stabbed.

Monday, February 15, 2010

Minuteman American Defense Leader Shawna Forde Trial Update

Defense attorneys for Albert Gaxiola have asked Judge John Leonardo to reconsider his decision to allow prosecutors to pursue the death penalty for him. Gaxiola, Shawna Forde and Jason Bush are charged with first-degree murder in last year's deaths of Raul Flores, Jr. and his young daughter, Brisenia. If convicted, the three could receive the death penalty.Flores was shot six times, three times in the chest, once each in the head, arm and hand. His 9-year-old daughter was shot twice in the face.

Authorities believe Forde and Bush planned to rob Flores of drugs and money to fund Forde's Minutemen American Defense group, which is devoted to fighting illegal immigration and drug trafficking.
Attorneys Jack Lansdale and Steven West contend Gaxiola was not at Flores' house the night of the slayings.
In their motion asking Leonardo to reconsider his ruling the defense attorneys say:
* One of the state's key witnesses, Oin Oakstar, will testify there was no plan to kill Flores' children or his wife. (Oakstar says he was supposed to go with them that night, but got too drunk.)
* Although Gaxiola's DNA was found on a gun at the scene, Flores' wife identified the tall man (presumably Bush) was the one carrying it and there's no way to tell when the DNA was left on the gun.
* Some jewelry and weapons were stolen, but $4,000 in cash was left behind, so prosecutors can't prove pecuniary gain was a motive.
* Flores' wife knows Gaxiola, but she never identified him as the other man she saw peeking in that night.
The defense attorneys attached a portion of the statement Oakstar gave prosecutors to their motion. In it, he says:
"They didn't really discuss the family. That wasn't part of the plan as far as I knew...The only thing they discussed was taking down Junior and Victor, try to catch 'em together."
When asked about Gaxiola's motivation, Oakstar said Gaxiola wanted to eliminate his competition.
"(He said) if there was weed, he was gonna use it to pay them for the, for the killing," Oakstar said.
When Bush and Forde told him what happened that night, Oakstar said he told them, "You guys messed up, you know, that's, you can't, you can't be doing that. You can't shoot, you know, you can't shoot women and kids, and they're like, 'Well it just happened that way."

Sunday, February 14, 2010

Should We Be Afraid of the HAARP Project?

Have you heard about the HAARP Project? If so, should we be afraid/concerned about it? There are a number of conspiracy theories that say HAARP can cause earthquakes, control the weather, detect missiles, destroy missiles, or engage in mind control.

I usually do not buy into conspiracy theories, but this week, with the huge snowstorm in the Dallas area, I gave it some second thoughts. I've lived in Dallas over 10 years and I have never seen snow here such as this. The night of the snow, the sky flashed blue lightning. It was the strangest color and it shocked all across the sky. It happened twice and my husband and I both saw it. That night I started googling Blue Lightning. I saw a few youtubes referencing Blue Lightning. That's where I first started seeing talk about HAARP. Today, I saw an expose on HAARP on the truTV channel. I also saw this News reports from February 2, 2005, talk about the light show created by HAARP with their new technology.

Now I am curious. Have you heard about HAARP? Should we be worried?

From Google:
HAARP refers to the "High-Frequency Active Auroal Research Program". It is located near the town of Gakona, Alaska. HAARP project is funded by the US Senate and operated by the US Navy & AirForce. The purpose of HAARP is to analyze the behavior of the ionosphere which is the part of the atmosphere that extends from approximately 70km up to as much as 1500km. This is done by transmitting a focused beam of radio frequency energy, at between 2.8 and 10MHz, directly at a point in the ionosphere between 100 and 350 km in altitude, basically within the "E" layer.
HAARPs Power:
72,000 times more powerfull than the U.S's most powerfull radio station. HAARP can focus all its radio waves into a single beam in the sky, which effectively exceeds its 3.6 Million watt power status. With this enormous power, the possibilites for use of HAARP are endless. Of course activists ,conspiricists, and enviromentalists all have different ideas for applications of this weapon / utility, both good and bad.

Here is what Wiki says about HAARP:
The High Frequency Active Auroral Research Program (HAARP) is an ionospheric research program jointly funded by the US Air Force, the US Navy, the University of Alaska and the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA). Its purpose is to analyze the ionosphere and investigate the potential for developing ionospheric enhancement technology for radio communications and surveillance purposes (such as missile detection). The HAARP program operates a major Arctic facility, known as the HAARP Research Station, on an Air Force owned site near Gakona, Alaska. The most outstanding instrument at the HAARP Station is the Ionospheric Research Instrument (IRI), a high power transmitter facility operating in the high frequency range. The IRI is used to temporarily excite a limited area of the ionosphere. Other instruments, such as a VHF and a UHF radar, a fluxgate magnetometer, a digisonde and an induction magnetometer, are used to study the physical processes that occur in the excited region.
Work on the HAARP Station began in 1993. The current working IRI was completed in 2007, and its prime contractor was
BAE Advanced Technologies. As of 2008, HAARP had incurred around $250 million in tax-funded construction and operating costs.

Friday, February 12, 2010

Abusive Internet Commenter Indicted for sending Threatening eMails to Latino Websites!

Hate Crimes and Hate Talk Against Latinos. It is prevalent. As new Latino Blogs grow across the blogosphere, more and more Anonymous ANTIs spew their version of hate and attacks against the PRO-bloggers. Their mission? To stop PRO Bloggers from writing the truth about what is happening across America. I've had many Anonymous bloggers visit my blog and spew profane language and threats against me. I would love to allow unmoderated comments on my blogs, but a few of my anonymous bloggers prevent me from doing that. I have one particular Anonymous blogger that visits my site every day. He is particularly abusive. He is profane and abusive.


Why do I talk about this? The FBI is FINALLY coming down hard on abusive commenters. Last Friday, the FBI indicted Vincent B. Johnson, 60, of Brick New Jersey. Johnson wrote under his email identity of "Devilfish579." The Indictment, which was returned by a grand jury on Feb. 4 and unsealed on Feb. 5, 2010, alleges that between November 2006 and February 2009, Johnson, using the Internet username “Devilfish579,” repeatedly sent threatening e-mail communications to employees of the Latino Justice Puerto Rican Legal Defense and Education Fund; the Mexican American Legal Defense and Educational Fund; the National Council of La Raza; the League of United Latin American Citizens; and the National Coalition of Latino Clergy and Christian Leaders. The indictment further alleges that Johnson intended to place the victims in fear of bodily injury and that Johnson acted because the victims were aiding and encouraging persons of Latino descent to participate without discrimination in activities provided by the federal and state governments.


According to the Indictment, among multiple e-mails Johnson sent, in November 2006, he wrote “[d]o you have a last will and testament? If not, better get one real soon.” Additionally, in January 2007, Johnson sent two e-mails to the victims, stating “[o]ur guns are loaded and we will take you out as well whether by the courts or by true fire power” and “[i]f the idiots in the organizations which this e-mail is being copied to can’t fathom the serious nature of their actions, then they will be on the hit list just like any illegal alien...actually, they are already on the list.” In February 2007, he wrote “I am giving you fair warning that your presence and position is being tracked...you are dead meat...along with anyone else in your organization.” In September 2007, he sent two e-mails, in which he wrote “my preference would be to buy more ammunition to deal with the growing chaos created by the pro-illegal alien groups. RIP [names] who are not the friends of our democracy” and “[a]fter reading the article below can you give me simply one good reason why someone should not put a bullet between your eyes for your actions that are promoting lawlessness in this country?”


Reading devilfish's hate-filled threats makes my skin crawl. However, threats like these will NEVER deter me or other like minded PRO bloggers from writing the truth. My hope is that these racist, nativist, hate-filled commenters will learn somthing from this. Yes. We ALL do have the FREEDOM OF SPEECH. However, they will also learn we cannot and should not threaten anyone else nor should we use abusive/profane language or threats. My rights extend to the fingertips of those I disagree with.
References:
New Jersey Man Indicted for Threatening Employees of Latino Civil Rights Organizations
NJ Man Indicted for Threatening Lives of Latino Civil Rights Workers
Arrest of 63-year-old anti-Hispanic cyber-stalker underscores disturbing trend

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Meghan McCain - FINALLY, A Sane Republican, Blasts Tancredo, Palin and the Tea Party Movement

Meghan McCain had some choice words for Sarah Palin, former Rep. Tom Tancredo and the conservative Tea Party movement as a whole during her appearance Monday on ABC's "The View." McCain, was particularly scathing in her assessment of Tancredo's speech on the opening day of the National Tea Party Convention on Thursday in Nashville. In the speech, Tancredo said people "who could not spell the word vote or say it in English" elected a "committed socialist ideologue" because the country does not require a "civics literacy test."
"It's innate racism, and I think it's why young people are turned off by this movement," McCain said. "And I'm sorry -- revolutions start with young people, not with 65-year-old people talking about literacy tests and people who can't say the word vote in English."

Though speakers at the convention repeatedly rejected the "racist" label during the three-day event and held sessions on ways to attract young activists to their cause, McCain pointed to Tancredo's speech as a sign of what's wrong with the Tea Party movement. "This rhetoric will continue to turn off young voters, and anybody that says different is smoking something -- period," she said.

McCain also criticized her father's former running mate for comments she made during an interview with "Fox News Sunday." In the interview, Palin suggested that President Obama could improve his re-election chances by declaring war on Iran. "You should never go to war unless it's the absolute last circumstance," McCain said on "The View." On "Fox News Sunday," Palin also called for White House Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel to "step down," in part for using the word "retarded" in a strategy session last year which only recently became public -- but at the same time, Palin defended conservative talk show host Rush Limbaugh's use of the word as "satirical." McCain said that assessment is "exactly what is wrong with politics today."
"We can't placate and say Democrats can say one thing and Republicans can say another thing," she said.

Monday, February 8, 2010

Sarah Palin Disrespectfully Attacks the American People, the President; Her Hand Notes

Former Alaska governor and Republican vice presidential nominee Sarah Palin's appearance before the National Tea Party Convention in Nashville Saturday night gave plenty of red meat to the attendees. She taunted all Americans who voted for the President's message of Hope and Change, "Now, a year later, I gotta ask the supporters of all that, 'How's that hopey, changey thing working out for ya?' " (She actually stole this disrespectful joke from a t-shirt!)

Then, more meat for the crowd, including calling President Obama "a charismatic guy with a Teleprompter."

Meanwhile, she could be seen glancing at her hands repeatedly during her Q&A with Tea Party Nation founder Judson Phillips when asked what were the top three things a Conservative majority in Congress should do. A photographer's picture revealed the words "Energy," "Budget cuts" (crossed out), "Tax," and "Lift Americans Spirits" scribbled in ink on the inside of her left hand.

Interesting New TV Show: Undercover Boss



After the Superbowl last night, my husband and I watched Undercover Boss. It's a new reality show where the Company CEO goes undercover in his own company. The PROMO says: "The economy is going through tough times. And many working Americans blame wealthy CEOs who are out of touch with their own companies. But some bosses are willing to take extreme actions to make their businesses better. Each week, we'll follow the boss of a major corporation as they go undercover in their own companies."

Last night we watched Larry O'Donnell, president and chief operating officer of Waste Management, venture into the depths of his company's tough jobs, including working on a recycling assembly line, picking up trash off of trash heaps in a city dump, working with a clerk who was doing the job of 3 people that were not replaced when they were laid off, and vacuuming human waste out of porta-johns.

I liked the show although it didn't really ring true at the end. I do recommend it to others as a very nice "feel good" show. The worker was the hero. The CEO really listened, admitted there were some problems - though he blamed them all on lower and middle management, and said he was going to make changes. For me, the most fun was seeing the CEO right in the dreggs of every day work of the people and filming the problems. It even touched my heart when the CEO shed a tear for a worker that was losing her house -- and he helped her. Would he do it for all workers who had these types of problems? Probably Not. But this made for good TV.

In the weeks to come, we will see the CEO from Hooters, 7-11 and Bakery Express.
You can catch last night's show on On-Demand for CBS. This youtube provides a nice preview. Future shows are on Sunday nights from 9 - 10 ET.

Note: My other favorite new show -- "Men of a Certain Age" on Monday Nights on TNT (10pm ET) with Ray Romano, Scott Bakula and Andre Braugher .

Sunday, February 7, 2010

Duplicitous Palin: Palin Considering 2012 Run, Defends Limbaugh's Use Of 'Retard' On Fox News Sunday

Former Alaska governor Sarah Palin didn't cage her answer when pressed Sunday morning as to whether she would consider a run for president in 2012. "I would, I would if I believe that is the right thing to do for our country and the Palin family. Certainly I would do so," she told "Fox News Sunday," in an interview that was taped before she addressed a Tea Party convention the night before. "I think that it would be absurd to not consider what it is that I could potentially do to help our country ... . I won't close a door that perhaps could be open for me in the future."

Palin also used her platform to continue a call for the president to rid himself of one of his closest advisers, Chief-of-Staff Rahm Emanuel. She said his comments calling liberal groups "f-ing retards" was "indecent and insensitive" and cause for his dismissal. Last August, Emanuel "showed up at a weekly strategy session featuring liberal groups and White House aides," the Journal's Peter Wallsten reported last Tuesday."Some attendees said they were planning to air ads attacking conservative Democrats who were balking at Mr. Obama's health-care overhaul. 'F—ing retarded,' Mr. Emanuel scolded the group, according to several participants. He warned them not to alienate lawmakers whose votes would be needed on health care and other top legislative items." Emanuel has since apologized to Tim Shriver, the CEO of the Special Olympics.

But Palin went to great and sometimes awkward lengths to defend conservative talk show host Rush Limbaugh when he called the exact same liberal groups the same term "F-ing retards" in the same context. Palin said, "awwww. He was just kiddin'. They are kooks, so I agree with Rush Limbaugh," she said, when read a quote of Limbaugh calling liberal groups "retards." "Rush Limbaugh was using satire ... . I didn't hear Rush Limbaugh calling a group of people whom he did not agree with 'f-ing retards,' and we did know that Rahm Emanuel, as has been reported, did say that. There is a big difference there."
References:

Saturday, February 6, 2010

Traitors & Anarchists: Racist Tancredo, Brainwashed Teabaggers, Demented Upside-Down Flag Waver




The National Convention of the Racist, Radical, Traitorous, Anarchistic Teabaggers is this weekend. Racist Tom Tancredo was their Opening Speaker. He opened the Teabagger Convention Thursday with a hate-filled, racist, traitorous speech lambasting our President for "running a socialist government", chastising those he says are illiterates (people of color) that voted for our President, and what he termed "the cult of multi culturalism."
The Teabagger audience cheered, chanting "Obama is Hitler."

BTO Reports:
Poll Reveals Many Republicans are uninformed extremists
It seems that the teabaggers, racists and right wing extremists have taken over the Republican Party. Of those polled as self-identified Republicans, 39% believe President Obama should be impeached. 63% think he is a socialist. 42% do not believe the President was born in the United States. 31% believe President Obama hates white people. 23% want their state to secede from the U.S..

Meanwhile, a demented, traitorous Teabagger in Fort Worth is flying the American Flag upside down. This disrespectful traitor's opinion is President Obama is a socialist and is destroying our country and therefore the country is in distress. She is angry about the economy and about the recovery. She says she wants her country back...from our Black President. Her actions are a slap in the face to all of our young men serving in the military or to any veteran. I have two nephews in Iraq and nephew who served two terms in Iraq and is currently in Afghanistan. I do NOT support her waving our US Flag upside down and I did NOT support the Latino children waving the US Flag upside down under Mexico's flag. Even though both were advocating broken policies, both are WRONG and BOTH are TRAITOROUS!!

What is wrong with Tancredo, the Teabaggers, this angry upside-down flag waver? They are being brain-washed and hood-winked by the likes of Glenn Beck, Sean Hannity and Fox News who traitorously prey on fear, political instability, and economic suffering, which, in turn, means that Fox News profits from fear, political instability, and economic suffering. Traitors, ALL OF THEM! If they do not LOVE our Country, then I suggest they GET OUT!!

Post Script:
Some of Tancredo's well known quotes against minorities include:
1. "Miami is a 3rd world country."
2. "Immigration IS about Race. Throughout history, people who are NOT white Anglo-Saxon have become American by adopting a white Anglo-Saxon culture." He insists all minority immigrants have to become white northern Europeans if they want to assimilate to become Americans.
3. Told people in El Paso concerned about a fence dividing up their land to move to Mexico.

PostScript 2:
The idea for Teabaggers to fly the flag upside down originally came from KKK founded website Stormfront:
Upside Down American Flag
If some of you intelligent, well spoken, very knowledgable people were to fly an upside down american flag in front of your house, it might draw the attention of the media.It would give us another way of getting the message out, and waking people up. Of course it would draw unwanted attention like complaints, and maybe vandalism, but that's to be expected. Maybe it would help if you were a large, intimidating individual also, who could poke his shotgun out the window and let out a roar like a lion.


Thursday, February 4, 2010

John Edwards and Other Sexually Corrupt Men in Politics!

After I wrote about Republican Senator Scott Brown and his Playgirl Centerfold past, one of my long time commenters, Ultima, who happens to be an ANTI (although very civil and knowledgeable), asked me to write my thoughts about John Edwards (past Democratic Presidential Candidate), just so I am fair and balanced.

John Edwards (shudder). The more I hear about John Edwards' antics, the more angry I become. Hearing about his antics makes me curious about politicians in general. Is it Washington that corrupts the politician or is it the politician that corrupts Washington?

When I think about politicians with sex scandals in politics, I think of :
Democrats: Edwards (affair), Clinton (affair-cigar-dress), the Kennedys (affairs); Gov. Spitzer (prostitutes);
Republicans: Mark Foley (16 yr old male pages); Ted Haggard, Evangelical advisor to Bush (male prostitutes); Sen. Larry Craig (males in bathrooms stalls); Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas (pubic hair on coke-sexual harrassment); Senator David Vitter (DC Madam; prostitutes). And let's not forget SC Gov. Mark Sanford and his Argentinian girlfriend.

All despicable!

Regarding Edwards, what I find worst is that he committed his indiscretions while at the same time playing up his wife's cancer all for the sake of the possibility of winning the Presidential election. If we believe the reports that have come out to date: Edwards began his affair with someone he met in a bar; hired her as his videographer; continued the affair while lying to his wife, his staff and his supporters throughout his campaign for President; impregnated her; told his mistress he would marry her after his cancer ridden wife died; then lied to his wife when she found out; continued his affair; then, when he was outed by the Enquirer, again LIED to the American Public. I have no forgiveness for the other woman. She knew he was married when she began the affair; when she became pregnant. I think she purposely became pregnant. She was not a naive child. She was a knowledgeable woman of the world in her forties. She did it knowing his wife had cancer and that he was running for president. She cared nothing for his wife or for America.

Ultima, all I can say about Edwards is, I am very happy he was not elected for President and he is out of politics. I wash my hands of him. My thoughts and prayers go to his wife and their children.

Regarding the other political ne'er-do-wells that are still in politics, I can only hope they are true to their words and their past is behind them...but I don't hold much hope this is true.

Monday, February 1, 2010

Grammys and Taylor Swift and Beyonce! I Don't Get It! Or Maybe I Do!



While my husband watched the Pro Bowl last night, I decided to watch the Grammys. I love singing and singers so I wanted to see what was advertised to be "the best of the best singers" perform. In the end, Beyonce Knowles and Taylor Swift walked away with the most awards. It was their night. We had an opportunity to see both of them perform many of their songs. Both are beautiful ladies with outstanding stage presence. However, neither of them are the best singers in either of their categories.

When I mention the word "ladies" I use this word on purpose. Both of these ladies have pristine reputations. Beyonce is married to Jay Z. She leads a very quiet social life, not fodder for the tabloids. No bad rumors. Taylor Swift (20) grew up in a little rural town in Pennsylvania before moving with her parents to a suburb of Nashville and only recently moved out of her parent's home into her own condo. In other words, both have squeaky clean reputations, have pretty faces, nice figures and are absolutely perfect for marketing purposes. They can sponsor anything.

However, I do not believe they are the best singers.
Beyonce - According to a recent poll, the following singers sing better than Beyonce:
1. Mariah Carey
2. Cristina Aguilera
3. Jennifer Hudson
4. Alicia Keys
5. Mary J Blige

Taylor Swift -who sings better? Wow! So many. But let's stick to Country. Many ask, IS that Country she is singing? In country, who sings better (I love country music):
1. Martina McBride
2. Shania Twain
3. Carrie Underwood
4. Trisha Yearwood
5. Reba McEntire (other old timers: Patsy Cline, Dolly Parton, Loretta Lynn)
6. Faith Hill

Taylor is very talented. She plays her own guitar. She has written many songs (that all sound the same, very low and repetitive; some say whining.) And she and her family have marketed her very, very well.

Last night at the Grammys, Swift did not sound well, particularly when she sang with Stevie Nicks. Here is what
Time.com said about her performance:
"But something is off in her performance. Swift doesn't sound her best, especially in comparison to Stevie Nicks, her duet partner."
Click on this YouTube video, especially at 1:45 in, and you decide for yourself. Taylor is off key when she harmonizes. Just awful! But worse yet, doesn't seem to know it. As far as her song writing skills, decide for yourself. Here are the lyrics to the very repetitive tune "You belong with me"

You're on the phone with your girlfriend, She's upset
She's going off about something that you said
She doesnt get your
humour like I do

I'm in the room, its a typical Tuesday night
I'm listening to the
kind of music she doesnt like
And she'll never know
your story like I do

But she wears short skirts, I wear t-shirts
She's cheer captain and
I'm on the bleachers
Dreaming bout the day
when you wake up and find
That what you're lookin for has been here the
whole time

Here is what I do GET: I will give it to Taylor and to Beyonce for their marketability. They are the best of the best in that category. I will also leave my feelings regarding their actual singing talents to a generation gap. I may not "get" their talents now, but at one point in my life I did like these songs which are very similar to theirs:
. It's My Party and I'll Cry if I Want To
. Who's Sorry Now
. He's So Fine

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