Archive | August 19, 2012

Brad Pitt Helping to Make It Right for Katrina Survivors

A Float House, designed by Morphosis Architects for Make It Right

Brad Pitt Helping to Make It Right for Katrina SurvivorsBy Hwaa Irfan

For quite a few Americans, Hurricane Katrina will remain an indelible stain on their hearts and minds becuase that was when they learnt what the rest of America thought of them, questioning their whole right to exist in this world. Referred to as the black nation’s 9/11

“The magnitude of the destruction and human suffering caused by Hurricane Katrina to the people and communities of the Gulf Coast region, while not the result of an act of “terror,” is directly the result of a profit-driven system of capitalist exploitation reinforced by the national oppression of African American people in the U.S. South, a region where the majority of Black people live and where the conditions of oppression, poverty and underdevelopment are most concentrated.” – Saladin Muhammad

The ‘event’ is photographed, researched in terms of climatology, meteorology, geology, building cost, photographed, after affects, natural disaster preparedness etc, but as public attention waned so too did help. As Stan Tiner of the Sun-Herald noted

“people of the (Mississippi) Gulf Coast have receded into the hazy status of non-people whose story is untold.”


Katrina began in the Bahamas on 23 August 2005 as a tropical storm, and by the time it hit Florida on the 25th , it had become a category 1 (windspeeds of 75mph+), a category by the time it hit the Gulf Coast on 29th with a windspeed of 140+ mph. At that time, the second strongest hurricane recorded to hit the U.S has been dwarfed in recent years across the U.S.

As 64% of the U.S. falls prey to as serious drought, the ‘Old Man River’ the Mississipi dies too, but with a reputation for havoc,back then had levees built as protection against a category 3 – Katrina was a categoy 4. With storms 20 feet high, 15 millione lives were affects with 80% of New Orleans underwater.

More than 70 countries pledged donations and/or assistance. Kuwait made the largest single pledge of U.S$500mn, but Qatar, India, China, Pakistan and Bangladesh made very large donations as well. However many willing donors complained on the bureaucratic irresolve, the blockage of shipment (one German aid plane was turned back),  and refusal in some cases, sounding very much like the strategy applied with the Haiti earthquake. So was the Bush Adminstrations response to Katrina, leaving  it days later before the National Guard and FEMA  was sent in, contracts handed out for reconstruction to contractore close to Bush, e.g. Halliburton (once headed by then vice-president Dick Cheney), All of this along with the ‘rioting blacks’ mentality which informed Bush’s orders to shoot to kill if looting. Bush ignored warnings in previous months from government officials and experts that a breach of the levees was likely. All reports at the time were counter to what was happening on the ground as observed by news photojournalist Tony Zumbado for MSNBC:

I can’t put it into words the amount of destruction that is in this city and how these people are coping. They are just left behind. There is nothing offered to them. No water, no ice, no C-rations, nothing, for the last four days. They were told to go to the convention center. They did, they’ve been behaving. It’s unbelievable how organized they are, how supportive they are of each other. They have not started any melees, any riots. They just want food and support. And what I saw there I’ve never seen in this country. We need to really look at this situation at the convention center. It’s getting very, very crazy in there and very dangerous. Somebody needs to come down with a lot of food and a lot of water.”

That report was a live report on September 1 2012!

But for Jesmyn Ward, Katrina was a memorable traumatic experience that was helped by two things to prevent a complete breakdown:

“Breathe,” she told herself. “You can breathe through anything.”

… and to write about the experience, that gave birth to Salvage the Bones, her second novel which won her the National Book Award in 2011.

Then, Jesmyn’s town was completely destroyed, and her family managed to get to their truck and drive to a neighboring white family. Speaking to Emma Brockes of the Guardian, Jesmyn recalled:

“And there we are,” says Ward, trembling slightly at the memory.

“Me, my mom, my mom’s husband, my elderly grandmother, my grandfather and my pregnant sister, who at eight months was very big. We’re soaking wet because we’ve had to scramble out of the house and swim part of the way. And they open up the door. And the wind is rocking the car and they’re yelling at us and we’re yelling back at them because it’s the only way we can be heard, and trees are flying through the air. They shout: ‘Are y’all all right?’ And we’re like: ‘Are you serious? We’re sitting outside in a category-five hurricane. Do we look O-OK?'” She stutters. “And they said: ‘Well, y’all can sit outside in this field, until the water goes down, but we don’t have room for you in the house. We can’t let you in.’ And I thought: this is some bullshit.”

For Jesmyn and many others that was when the real trauma began, the point at which one is regarded as worthless!

Then there were the false reports, of ‘black lawlessness’ casting yet another excuse to let ‘those’ people ‘drown’. It was not until April 2012 – 7 years later, that 5 policemen (of 20) were convicted for those false claims made to coverup their killing of as many ‘blacks’ as they could.

The result, there has been a -29.1% drop in population in New Orleans, whereas in Louisianna, which was also affected the state has grown by over 64,000 during the last ten years according to a 2010 U.S. Census – its one way of ‘culling’ the population!

“The city is more affluent, more Latin and a little whiter than it was before Katrina,” Jacques Morial commented to Bloomberg, a community organizer whose father and brother were its first and third black mayors.

For those who died or just simply left the pain behind, the Federal investment of U.S$45bn beneifted them not at all! By 2007, those who did/could not leave (evacuees), still ‘lived’ outside of the city in FEMA trailers waiting for the promise that has never arrived.

Making It Right Foundation

The Arts, is an expression of the human creative potential, that can take the intangible and make it it tangible helping both the artiste and the observer to rise above the mundane to make greater sense of the world we live in. However, that essential  ethic of the Arts does not sit on the front seat of the Hollywood today. There are of course exceptions, and now again they shine in the backdrop of mainstream/alternative media. This is reflected in the way that Brad has deliberately chosen to lead his life outside and occasionally inside that medium maintaining contact with real life and the lives of others.

A glowing example of that is Pitt’s Making It Right Foundation. Two years after Katrina, Pitt visited the Lower 9th Ward of New Orleans where 4,000 homes were destroyed. The area was still devastated, nothing was done. Pitt promised that he would help make it right.

The Make it Right Foundation began with the goal of building 150 affordable green homes that are storm resistant, and suitable for families to live in.

On their website it states:

“Make It Right is part of the broader rebuilding effort in New Orleans. We’re working with the City of New Orleans, the New Orleans Redevelopment Authority and other nonprofits to build the affordable housing, infrastructure and amenities key to bringing families home. Right now, acclaimed architect Frank Gehry who developed a duplex design for Make It Right, is working on another affordable housing project in New Orleans.”

The efficient eco-friendly homes include:

  • Elevations 8 feet above the ground
  • Emrgency escape hatch in the roof
  • Energy Star-rated windows and appliances
  • Formaldehyde free paint
  • Formaldehyde free cabinets
  • Affordable at U.S standards costing about U.S$150,000

Make It Right is also helping to rebuild a community using:

  • Native landscaping
  • Micro-farms
  • Rain gardens
  • Building new streets
  • Gardens for the Martin      Luther King school, the Tekrema Community Center and the Village

Pitt enlisted expert help from architect Frank Gehry and 20 other architects all who contribute their talent and skill to Make It Right allowing residents to pay what they can afford within reason.

Alot of expert help is involved, like that of the University of New Orleans Engineering Division which have engineered wall sections that uses 30% less materials than traditional wall, yet are 5 times stronger. The project has also been wroking on strengthening porous concrete.

New skills learned are passed on through internships, which has increased for instance Louisianna certified contractors skilled in pervious concrete from 0 – 20.

This effort was not born of one man, but began with one man who convened a meeting in December 2006 with a group of experts in New Orleans to brainstorm the idea. Pitt spent time with community leaders and the displaced people themselves to forge a way forward. The next step involved a architecture competition that was organized by Global Green to generate ideas on how to build sustainably.

Discussions continued exploring a large scale development of eco-friendly, but affordable housing that was innovative and could be replicated. Pitt’s intention has born fruit, and that is that the initiative would pave the way to recovery, and redevelopment across New Orleans.

What is that proverbial saying “ anything is possible when done by the willing…”  it is just that far too many are not willing to make it right. Pitt’s art has given him the ability to do this, and for some people on this earth to believe again. Pitt believes in comunity, having lived in New Orleans he knows what community really means, and that community which felt that their world had been pulled away from under its feet, with all its traditions, is what energizes Pitt because it is all about being apart of the process, not a distant donator to real life!


Brokes, E. “Jesmyn Ward: ‘I wanted to write about the people of the south’

McCulley, R. “Healing Katrina’s Racial Wounds.”,8599,1656660,00.html

McGreal, C. “Five New Orleans Police Officers Sentenced in Hurricane Katrina Killings.”

Schulman, J, and Schweber-Koren,R . “Eight Big Lies About Katrina”

Sedghi, A. “New Orleans population drops by nearly 30% – full Louisiana population data.”

Related Topics:

A Home Amidst a Never-Endign Cycle of Disasters

Forced to Build Sandbag Homes in Gaza

Living in a Policed State…

 U.S. – Former Marine Arrested for Criticizing Government!

In case this video is ‘unavailable’ please read the following:

On the 16th August at approximately 7:30pm, Brandon J Raub, founder of the Richmond Liberty Movement, was arrested. When friends came home they witnessed Brandon being detained by the Police, FBI, and Secret Service, loads of vehicles on scene.

Video exists of evidence showing Brandon being taken away. Friends and family asked what had happened, they were told they were tipped off that Brandon had “posts” on his FB that led them to believe he was a danger to others and/or himself.

Brandon believes 9/11 was an inside job and questions the actions of government like most of us. Brandon is a level headed, logical, non violent, Marine veteran. He has no known history of being a menace or previously arrested. They were told he would be taken to jail for resisting arrest. They were told he needed to be mentally evaluated for PTSD (due to being a veteran).

As of this morning his family and friends have contact the FBI and Local Police. They are now being told there is NO RECORD of him being taken into custody. This is the key turning point of this story. If you are an attorney, media personality, or you have direct contact info to key personnel you know can investigate this story or make it viral, please get on this!  – Source

U.S. – Woman Fined U.S$600 for Feeding Hungry Children

A Pennsylvania woman who offers free lunch every day to low-income children in her neighborhood faces a $600-a-day fine next summer if she continues because she did not clear the food giveaway with township officials.

Angela Prattis donates her time to distribute the meals — supplied by the Archdiocese of Philadelphia — and adheres to strict paperwork, like filling out weekly reports and being visited bi-weekly from a state worker Read on >>>

U.K. – Father Arrested for Not Smiling

A father with Parkinson’s disease was arrested as he watched the Olympic cycling road race because he ‘failed to smile or look like he was enjoying himself’.

Mark Worsfold, a martial arts trainer and former soldier, claims that he was thrown to the floor and handcuffed just as cyclists passed by.

His worried wife Nicola only found out he was being held after she reported him missing when he did not turn up for their daughter’s ninth birthday party. Read on >>>

U.S. – Vagrant Shot 30 Times By Police

‘Three days before Independence Day, Milton Hall died in a fusillade of police gunfire outside a strip mall after he called 9/11 for help.

Police claimed they shot the man because he was known to be aggressive and was holding a knife and threatening to assault police. However, CNN has obtained amateur video which shows a different story.’

Collecting Rainwater Illegal – Oregon man begins jail sentence

“I’m sacrificing my liberty so we can wake up as a country”. An Oregon man, Gary Harrington, is in prison on nine counts for collecting his own rainwater (not spring water atrating from a source outside of his own property). He began the first day of his 30 day jail sentence with a warning that the American people need to stand up to a government that is operating completely outside the boundaries of common sense unless they wish to see liberty vanish.

This process is being carried out under the umbrella/inspiration of the United Nations’ Agenda 21 project , which demands that member nations adopt “sustainable development” policies that are little more than a disguise for the reintroduction of neo-feudalism and only serve to reduce living standards and increase control.

U.S. ‘Records of police beating and pepper-spraying a naked, confused man in his own home should be made available to the media, the Vermont Supreme Court ruled.

A housekeeper called the police because she smelled smoke and found the bedroom “ransacked” with an overturned lamp. Police entered the home with guns drawn to find “a large male sitting naked on the toilet.”

He did not respond to police instruction, so the police pepper-sprayed him, beat him with a baton, handcuffed him and dragged him out of the house. Fifteen minutes later, the police discovered that they had dragged the man out of his own house. He suffered from a medical condition that sometimes rendered him unresponsive.’ Read on >>>

U.S. – Wednesday, 29 August 2012 07:31

‘This is the MOST chilling documentation of what the police have become in our country, and I’ve seen some bad ones. These cops are as bad, if not worse, than Hitler’s SS, during WW II, and it’s escalating every day. The time has come to rise up against this tyranny, before it’s too late, and that time is now ! I have a gut feeling that between today, and the election in Nov., this spiraling, out of control evil is going to descend upon us like nothing ever seen before!’ – David Icke

U.K. –

I got arrested in Castle Park, Bristol on the 12th may at around 15:10pm.

What happened was, a few people that I have met and hang around with in Bristol were walking through Castle Park on a lovely day. We saw some more friends on the hill type part of the park near the kids climbing area. As we got to the top of the hill i could see a police car and 3 youths were by the car. I asked a friend of mine what was going on, and he told me the that the police were having a word with the youths about playing on the climbing frame.

U.S. – The Return of the Debtors Prison

Debt collectors in states including Missouri and Alabama are using legal loopholes to lock up poor citizens who can’t pay their debts.

Debt collectors in states including Missouri and Alabama are using legal loopholes to lock up poor citizens who can’t pay their debts.

Illinois’ Attorney General Lisa Madigan has attacked the revival of the ‘debtors’ prisons’ – something most people associate with Dickens novels.

‘Too many people have been thrown in jail simply because they’re too poor to pay their debts,’ Madigan said. ‘We cannot allow these illegal abuses to continue.’ Read on >>>

U.S. – 75 Year Old Grandmother Held Down At Gunpoint As Police Shoot and Kill Her Dog

On August 15, 2012 Wayne County Sheriff’s deputies, along with Macedon, NY Police broke into 75 year old Phyllis Loquasto’s Plank Road home in the town of Walworth, NY, forced her at gunpoint to lay on her bathroom floor, screamed at her to close her eyes and stay down, then executed her dog “Duke.”

Minutes earlier, Loquasto, who has had three strokes and a knee replacement, was on her computer when she heard loud smashing sounds, then saw what she described as several men dressed in black with masks on.

As she was laying on her bathroom floor Loquasto could hear the men talking in loud voices.

“The dog hadn’t even barked, yet I heard one of them say, he’s aggressive, shoot him! I’ll never forget the sound of that gunshot and the blood flying everywhere. They did all this while forcing me to lay on the bathroom floor, screaming at me to stay down, and holding me at gunpoint. I couldn’t get up if I wanted to. I’m 75 years old, had three strokes and knee replacement, and can hardly walk. There was nothing I could do to help my pet.”

Unfortunately, Duke died a slow death.

“They shot him with a shotgun in such a manner that he ran around in pain and bled all over the house and suffered a slow, cruel death. There was no reason for this kind of treatment, they killed my dog for no reason. This was the sweetest and most gentle animal anyone could want, I would trust him with a baby.” Read on >>>

U.S. – 5 LAPD Officers Under Investigation After Female Cop Kicks Woman in the Genitals & She Suffocates to Death

Alesia Thomas died July 22, after she left her 3-year-old and 12-year-old at a police station, surrendering custody because she was a drug addict who could not care for them, according to Deputy Chief Bob Green.

Police tracked down the South Los Angeles resident and were trying to arrest Thomas on suspicion of child endangerment, police said. The incident was caught on a patrol car camera Read on >>>

Bloomberg Scolds Reporter For Questioning Police Shooting Of Nine Bystanders

Mayor Bloomberg] exploded in anger after a reporter asked him what he thought of the officers opening fire on 58-year-old Jeffrey Johnson Friday morning on a Midtown street, injuring nine bystanders who got caught in the crossfire.

“Let me ask you this Miss, if somebody pointed a gun at you and you had a gun in your pocket, what would you do? I think that answers the question,” Bloomberg said Tuesday at an unrelated news conference in the Bronx.

Johnson encountered the officers moments after he allegedly shot and killed his former co-worker, 41-year-old Steven Ercolino, outside Hazan Imports on West 33rd Street.

The two officers fired a total of 16 rounds at Johnson after he pulled out a gun and pointed it at the officers, police said.

“The guy turned and pointed his gun at the two police officers and you can really ask that question after that?” Bloomberg asked the reporter.

The mayor added that it’s unfortunate nine bystanders were injured, but insists the officers “acted more than appropriately.” Read on >>>

U.S.  Arrested for Being a Passenger

James Ian Tyson was listed as a terrorist over a traffic violation. Tyson, an activist with the Rainforest Action Network, was arrested for driving with a suspended license when he was only a passenger in the car.

“Tyson’s lawyer, Derek Fletcher, says a police report of the arrest claimed his client was on a terrorist watch list and should be held until the convention ends Thursday,” reports the Associated Press, adding that Tyson thinks he was targeted to prevent him from organizing a protest.

In other words, Tyson was arrested on a bogus charge, declared to be a terrorist and kidnapped by police simply in order to stop him from exercising his First Amendment rights.

“I’m a local Charlottean, I’m a farmer, I’m a carpenter, I’m a family member and a community member. I am not a terrorist,” Tyson told the Charlotte Observer, adding that he has no clue how he ended up on a terror watchlist. Read on >>>

U.S. Hostage Killed By Police

An unarmed 19-year-old hostage was gunned down by police after narrowly escaping an armed gunman engaged in a standoff in a hotel in Minnesota. Mark Eric Henderson Jr. saw his opportunity to escape from the Woodbury motel room where he and seven other people were being held hostage early Friday, and he took it.

When the gunman who had been tormenting the group told Henderson to go to the window to see if any police were outside, Henderson took his chance and made a beeline for the door. The kidnapper opened fire at him in response but missed. As Henderson bolted out the door toward them, Woodbury police opened fire and cut him down.

The 19-year-old St. Paul man died later that day at Regions Hospital in St. Paul.

“He tried to get out to save his life,” said his mother, Tawana Henderson. “When he opened the hotel door to run out, the police opened fire and killed him.”

A witness, who did not want to be identified, said he was watching everything take place and the man was not armed. Contradicting the police’s story at the time, he said, “I didn’t see a gun, I didn’t see anything. The cops opened up probably 10 to 15 rounds on him.” Read on >>>

U.S. LAPD Now Arresting Photographers

the LAPD is moving ahead as the first police department in the U.S. to implement Special Order 1, a policy which will allow the police to detain and arrest you if you are taking photos or videotaping certain buildings deemed by them as “suspicious activity”. The problem being of course – what exactly is considered suspicious activity?

Take for instance the innocent man Greggory Moore who was confronted for shooting pictures on his front lawn just because it happened to have the court house in the background. Eight policemen were called by “good citizen spies” to confront and interrogate him while he was held with his hands behind his back then patted down. Other photographers have experienced similar heinous police behavior and even been threatened with being put on the FBI watch list for taking pictures at the airport. Read on >>>

U.S. Officer Shoots a Pet in the Head Seven Times!

A man in a small Michigan town is livid after he claims a St Louis police officer gunned down his beloved eight-year-old golden retriever.

St. Louis police officer Matt Vanhall was on patrol in the small neighbourhood when he said the dog, Scout, darted in front of his police cruiser.

According to his report, Vanhall followed the dog who then began biting his leg. After the dog wouldn’t stop, Vanhall said he had no choice but to shoot him.

One of the Goetzinger’s neighbours told local news station WNEM a different story. ‘I heart “pop pop pop pop pop,” and I thought what is going on here?’ Read on >>>

U.S. 16-Year Old Questioned By FBI for a School Project!

In another shocking example of how the federal government is repositioning itself as a secret police force to target political dissidents, a 16-year-old boy was questioned by FBI agents over a You Tube video he created for a school project which highlighted how America was slipping into a police state. The video clip above, which promotes the presidential campaign of Congressman Ron Paul, was put together by Justin Hallman as part of a project for his American Government class. The video helped earn Hallman an A+ pass and his teacher enthused about how impressed he was with Hallman’s efforts.

The video touches on a number of issues, including the National Defense Authorization Act, evidence suggesting the Republican caucus in Maine was fixed to disenfranchise Ron Paul, the hacktivist group Anonymous, military drills taking place in American cities, as well as eviscerations of the right to free speech. Read on >>>

U.K – CCTV in School Toilets!

More than 200 schools are using CCTV cameras in toilets or changing rooms, figures showed today.

A total of 825 cameras were located in the toilets or changing rooms of 207 schools across England, Scotland and Wales, figures provided by more than 2,000 schools showed.

Almost one in 10 of the schools which use CCTV said cameras were positioned in such places, while 54 have more than one camera for every 15 students.

Nick Pickles, director of Big Brother Watch, said: “This research raises serious questions about the privacy of schoolchildren across Britain, with some schools having one camera for every five pupils and hundreds of schools using cameras in toilets and changing rooms.

“The full extent of school surveillance is far higher than we had expected and will come as a shock to many parents. Read on >>>

U.S Strip Searched and Tampon Removed!

Getting pulled over for rolling through a stop sign is whack. But getting pulled over, having a gun pointed in your face, and then being strip searched on the side of the road in front of your two children for rolling through a stop sign is, well, really whack and probably an excessive use of force. At least. that’s what a new lawsuit in the Sunshine State is claiming. Last July, Leila Tarantino claims that she was pulled over by an officer with the Citrus County Sheriff’s Department. In the suit, Tarantino says she came to a full stop and should have never been pulled over in the first place. Read on >>>

U.S: Unarmed Man Shot 41 Times By Police

Police in Texas shot an unarmed man 41 times, then turned around and confiscated another man’s camera after he started taking photos and shooting video of the bloody aftermath.

Dallas-area cops then deleted the man’s footage before returning the camera four days later.

Now police from two agencies are vowing to do a “complete investigation,” which, of course, means we will hear nothing more about the August 31 incident for at least several months.

But so far, the partial investigation has determined that Garland police officer Patrick Tuter lied in his initial report when he claimed that suspect Michael Vincent Allen backed his truck into the patrol car, causing the cop to fear for his life and leaving him no choice but to fire 41 times, meaning he reloaded at least once. Read on >>>

U.S. SWAT Team Shoots ex-Marine 71 Times in Front of his Wife!

Armed SWAT team enter the home of a 26-year-old Ex-Marine, Jose Guerena and shot him 71 times in front of his wife. He was struck by 60 of the bullets fired at him.’

France: Convicts Innocent Person Under Anti-Piracy Law

A 40-year-old Frenchman living in rural eastern France has become the first person ordered to pay a fine under France’s controversial anti-piracy three-strikes law known as Hadopi.

On Thursday, a judge ruled that Alain Prevost (Google Translate) must pay €150 ($194) for failing to secure his Internet (presumably WiFi) connection and for ignoring the three warnings sent by the Hadopi agency. He has become the first person to be convicted under Hadopi; his is the first of 14 cases brought against French Internet users who reach the third strike.

Since the election of François Hollande as president in June 2012, Hadopi has been under fire (even if the initiative began under his predecessor). In August, the new French minister of culture indicated that Hadopi would likely get shut down.

Jérémie Zimmerman, of the French digital rights group La Quadrature du Net condemned this verdict, in an e-mail sent to Ars.

“This is pure harassment and intimidation of this poor chap who doesn’t even know what happened to him, and shows the absurdity of the whole scheme,” he wrote. “Actually, Hadopi cases are completely empty of any evidence, with only IP addresses collected by private companies that no judge could ever accept as valid.” Read on >>> 

Grandfather Beaten to Death By Riverside County Sheriffs

Riverside County Sheriff’s deputies pepper sprayed and beat a grandfather to death as he waited to pick up his granddaughter from Norco High School, the family claims in court.The late Dennis Katz’s widow, Ester Katz, and his daughter Tracey Katz sued Riverside County, its Sheriff’s Department, sheriff’s Officer T. Warburg and other unidentified officers, in Superior Court.The Katzes claim Warburg and others pepper-sprayed and beat Dennis Katz to death on Sept. 22, 2011. He died early the next day. He was 68.

They say the grandpa was parked legally on Norco High School property, waiting to pick up his granddaughter, when “RCSD deputies arrived and began to question Mr. Katz while he was seated within his vehicle. He was then ordered to exit the vehicle for unknown reasons.”

Katz’s widow says her husband “did not attempt to flee, he made no threatening or furtive gestures toward the deputies or any other persons, he made no threatening statements toward the deputies, and he was not carrying any weapon of any type.”

Nonetheless, the Katzes say, Warburg and other deputies sprayed him with oleoresin capsicum and “struck [him] repeated on his forearms, elbows, legs and the top of his head. As a result, Mr. Katz collapsed, unable to stand and writhing in pain, as he was completely helpless from having been struck by numerous blows to the body. Mr. Katz was then dragged to the rear of his vehicle, where he was then handcuffed. Sometime soon after that point in time, Norco Fire Department returned to find Mr. Katz unresponsive and not breathing. He expired as a result of the oleoresin capsicum (OC) spray and severe trauma, including multiple contusions, lacerations and anterolateral rib fractures.” Read on >>>

U.S. Students Called to Private Grand Jury for Owning Books

Just a few weeks ago, an FBI task force raided a home* in Portland, Oregon very early in the morning. They broke down the front door with a battering ram and threw in a stun grenade, which is non-lethal but produces a very loud and disorienting noise and a blinding bright light. The team locked down the building and secured the sleepy, compliant occupants. The operation was one of several which also occurred in Olympia, WA and Seattle, WA, involving some 60-80 officers.

Just who were these dangerous criminals, these domestic terrorists whose threat level is so high that an FBI team with stun grenades, battering rams, and assault rifles needed to burst into their homes in the wee hours of the morning? Why, it’s two young folks, Leah-Lynn Plante and Matt Duran.

Reportedly, the FBI search warrant was for black clothing, paint, sticks, computers and cell phones, and ‘anarchist materials or literature.’ According to an FBI Domestic Terrorism guide published, “anarchists are criminals seeking an ideology to justify their actions,” and are “not dedicated to a particular issue.” Common meeting places are “college campuses, underground clubs, coffee houses/ internet cafes.” The implication is that owning “anarchist” literature is enough to indicate to the FBI that one is a criminal – even if that person happens to be a student studying political thought. Or maybeparticularly if you are a student – the FBI document states that anarchists are “educated persons of various backgrounds, often students.”

What even counts as anarchist material? Given the vitriolic US political rhetoric of anti-socialism, you might think a book by Karl Marx or about Tommy Douglas would count. What about someone like Shulamith Firestone? Hell, what about Walt Whitman?

Leah-Lynn and Matt have since been subpoenaed and ordered before a Grand Jury hearing, which is a private hearing used to determine if there is sufficient evidence to indict someone with a federal crime. During the proceedings of a Grand Jury, the defendant is not allowed an attorney to represent her or him. This means that a Grand Jury is essentially a group of twenty or so judges, a prosecutor looking to indict someone with a felony, and Leah-Lynn Plante, vegan. A Grand Jury is also secret, so we do not know and are not allowed to know what is going on in the courtroom. Read on >>>

U.S. House Approves Sweeping, Warrantless Electronic Spy Powers

The House on Wednesday reauthorized for five years broad electronic eavesdropping powers that legalized and expanded the George W. Bush administration’s warrantless wiretapping program.

The FISA Amendments Act, (.pdf) which is expiring at year’s end, allows the government to electronically eavesdrop on Americans’ phone calls and e-mails without a probable-cause warrant so long as one of the parties to the communication is believed outside the United States. The communications may be intercepted “to acquire foreign intelligence information.”

The government has also interpreted the law to mean that as long as the real target is [the phantom] al-Qaida, the government can wiretap purely domestic e-mails and phone calls without getting a warrant from a judge. That’s according to David Kris, a former top anti-terrorism attorney at the Justice Department.

The measure is sponsored by Rep. Lamar Smith (R-Texas) and the Obama administration has called its passage a top intelligence priority. (.pdf) The bill generally requires the secret Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act Court to rubber-stamp terror-related electronic surveillance requests that ensnare Americans’ communications.Read on >>>

Canada: Canadian ’Mask ban’ bill nears final stage : Disguise Yourself, Get 10 Years Prison

A bill that would make it illegal to wear a mask during a violent demonstration is nearing its final hurdle in the House of Commons, with just two hours of debate left.

Bill C-309 would make it a crime for people rioting or at an unlawful protest to conceal their identities. It’s already illegal to wear a disguise when committing an indictable, or more serious, offence, which includes rioting. Unlawful protests, however, don’t fall under that law because they’re classified as a summary conviction, or less serious, offence.

An unlawful assembly is a gathering that causes fear. It’s up to city officials to decide what constitutes a riot. Read on >>>

U.S. Military Drones

‘In a darkened underground room 35 miles Northwest of Las Vegas, Nevada US airmen are controlling the unmanned drones which might be looking at you this very moment.

Creech AFB, (formerly known as Indian Springs), is but one of 63 such UAV command centers across America today. Now not all of these are military; with increasing & alarming frequency such sites are run by your local & state police, as well as Darpa, homeland security and the usual alphabet soup of domestic security agencies. As if the patriot acts, echelon & carnivore, and more surveillance cameras every day weren’t enough for them, now our government is spying on our every move with armed combat drones. Read on >>>


// ‘Our country is being taken over by “sustainable development” under an environmental guise to mask a stealth takeover by bankers imposing a control grid upon the population.’

Australia: Australia: A  Gun Ban in Whose Favour?

“Laws that forbid the carrying of arms… disarm only those who are neither inclined nor determined to commit crimes… Such laws make things worse for the assaulted and better for the assailants; they serve rather to encourage than to prevent homicides, for an unarmed man may be attacked with greater confidence than an armed man.” ~Thomas Jefferson

U.S.Houston Officer Kills Double Amputee in Wheelchair

‘A Houston police officer shot and killed a one-armed, one-legged man in a wheelchair Saturday inside a group home after police say the double amputee threatened the officer and aggressively waved a metal object that turned out to be a pen.

Police spokeswoman Jodi Silva said the man cornered the officer in his wheelchair and was making threats while trying to stab the officer with the pen. At the time, the officer did not know what the metal object was that the man was waving, Silva said.’ Read on >>>

U.S.Mormon Church Threatens to Exommunicate Member Who Criticized Romney

‘A member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints says that church leadership is on a witch hunt against him after he criticized Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney.

David Twede, a fifth-generation Mormon, told The Daily Beast that on Sunday his bishop and three other church leaders in Orlando ordered him to “Cease and desist, Brother Twede” after they found discussions about Romney at the blog

Twede said that he felt “attacked, cornered, and very anxious” as the church officials informed him that they had scheduled a Sept. 30 excommunication “for apostasy.”’ Read on >>>

U.S: Texas cops destroy video evidence of colleague killing unarmed man

A Texas cop is on restricted duty after killing an unarmed man, while other officers are on the hook for trying to destroy documentary evidence of the event.

A police officer in Texas shot an unarmed man before colleagues confiscated and deleted video and mobile phone evidence of the event, which is now under criminal investigation.

The victim, Michael Vincent Allen, was chased by police in the Mesquite area of Dallas, Texas for 30 minutes at speeds of up to 100 miles an hour in a pursuit that involved police forces from multiple counties.

Allen eventually pulled into a cul-de-sac, when cops say he tried to ram his way past two patrol cars that had boxed in his pickup truck.

The officer who fired the shots, Patrick Tuter, said that it was at this point that he feared for his life, leaving him with no choice but to open fire on Allen.

Allen was shot 41 times, which means Tuter would have to had reload his gun at least once. Read on >>> 

U.S. Cop Caught Brutally Punching Woman In The Face

‘The Philadelphia Police Department is in hot water after a video has surfaced showing an officer with the force striking a woman in the face during this weekend’s Puerto Rican Day parade.

Video was published on YouTube over the weekend that documents the events immediately before an unidentified woman in attendance at Sunday’s was sucker-punched by a large police officer, prompting blood to gush from the victim’s face.’ Read on >>>

US Govt Massacres Virginia Family

The United States govt has massacred an entire family in the state of Virginia while the mainstream media has blamed it upon the murder-suicide of ‘a man distraught over the potential re-election of Barack Obama‘ after the so-called killer, Albert Peterson, threatened to expose govt. secrets.

Massacred by dark forces within the US govt were 13 year old Christopher Peterson, 16 year old Matthew Peterson and their parents, Albert and Kathleen Peterson. Both Kathleen and Albert had been employed by ‘highly secretive’ defense contractors Blackbird Technologies and Northrop Grumman. Blackbird Technologies, an offshoot of the infamous Blackwater/XE paramilitary group, is run by ex-CIA and Blackwater spook Cofer Black and is responsible for ‘tracking’targets of US Defense, Law Enforcement and Intelligence Communities, including Osama bin Laden. It’s also believed that Blackbird Tech is responsible for tracking Americans on Barack Obama ‘secret kill list’.

Though the mainstream media was quick to push the cover-up that Albert Peterson was suicidal and depressed over the potential re-election of Barack Obama, the likelihood of a long time employee of Northrup Grumman with Top Secret security clearances falling into the category of a suicidal killer are highly unlikely. If they knew he was mentally unstable, why would the government have allowed him to maintain the Top Secret security clearance that he still had?

“Peterson had recently lost a beloved uncle to suicide, and reportedly battled mental illness himself – including severe paranoia – for years.”

According to a neighbor who had met with the family at a picnic earlier in the day of the massacre:

Neighbor Jeremy Wilcox told local news radio station WTOP that the family had attended a community picnic together on Sunday and “showed no signs of any problem.” Read on >>>

U.K. Violent Eviction and the New Corporate State

This could be you. Watch as London resident with heart condition is violently assaulted by a gang of private ‘Community Police Officers’, and then evicted, a brutal act planned and carried out by the TMO – a local PPP/PPI private administrative corporation disguised as a government agency in Kensington and Chelsea, London.

This short documentary film by Patrick Henningsen was aired previously by the UK Column (14 min version), and has been re-edited to 22min version with extended analysis. It lays bare the illegal and criminal methods being employed by the New Corporate State, whose PPI and PPP agencies continue to masquerading as actual government agencies and offer no remedy to citizens who question there operating procedures. This film offers a rare and timely insight into Great Britain’s merciless new corporate state in 2012.

Smartphone Apps Now Use Microphone to Record Your Conversations

Did you know that many of the apps you download to your smartphone now use your microphone to listen to you and your camera to take pictures of you without your confirmation?

New terms of agreement contracts now being attached to app downloads require users to accept that their cellphones become literal monitoring devices that record conversations and surreptitiously take pictures without the user ever giving permission.

It’s been common knowledge for years that app companies and service providers use GPS technology to pinpoint the location of smartphone users.

However, after purchasing a new Samsung Galaxy Note II and proceeding to download a couple of Android apps, one a social networking app and the other a simple calendar, I was shocked to discover that users are mandated to relinquish every aspect of privacy imaginable in order to download the app.

Companies now demand the right to:

– “Record Audio” – “Allows the app to record audio with the microphone. This permission allows the app to record audio at any time without your confirmation.”

– “Take pictures and videos” – “Allows the app to take pictures and videos with the camera. This permission allows the app to use the camera at any time without your confirmation.”

App companies are also requiring you to allow them to approximate your location, send SMS messages from your phone that cost you money, read your contacts, read your phone status and identity, get “full network access” to your communications (in other words listen to your phone calls), modify or delete the contents of your USB storage, and disable your screen lock (the 4 digit code that password-protects your phone). Read on >>>

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