Wednesday, April 30, 2014

Just When You Thought You Heard It All News (5-3-2014)

Rush Limbaugh can sleep well now. Donald Sterling is the new most hated man in America !

Donald Sterling is not only banned for life from the Los Angeles Clippers and the NBA. A Nevada brothel owner also wants nothing to do with him.

Dennis Hof has banned Sterling for life from ever entering the doors of the Bunny Ranch near Carson City, Nevada, and any of his six other brothels in the state.

Even pimps and hoes have morals. Who knew!!!!

"A lot of NBA players come here to party," Hof told the local media "Out of respect to them, we have banned Sterling from coming here."

Hof says his sense of confidentiality prohibits him from confirming or denying if Sterling has ever visited his brothels.

"I can tell you this: Johnny Buss, one of the owners of the Los Angeles Lakers, and I have had a dual birthday party at the Bunny Ranch for the last 18 years, so a lot of NBA people have been here," he said.

Hof's stand against Sterling isn't only in support of the basketball players who've had to deal with the billionaire's alleged racism over the years.

"At any given time, 20 to 23 percent of the prostitutes here are African-American," Hof said. "And they're smoking hot. Some of them were crying this morning so we're doing this for them as well. We don't need racists or bigots at the Bunny Ranch."

Sterling isn't the first high-profile person forbidden to partake in Hof's garden of earthly delights.

"We banned the 'Duck Dynasty' guys. Those guys are the biggest homophobic assholes and they make their living killing animals," Hof said. "We've also banned Michael Vick. We don't want him here. I couldn't guarantee his safety from the girls. They love animals."

Sterling may be persona non grata at Hof's brothel, but his estranged girlfriend, V. Staviano, now has a free lifetime pass.

"She needs to meet some women who can satisfy her more than any man could," Hof said.

One word......ewwwww!!!!!

Warning: Some of the details in this next story definitely fall into the T.M.I category.
But everybody loves a good train wreck?!

A morbidly obese woman in Cedar Rapids, Iowa, is facing the biggest battle of her life, losing 200 pounds in a hurry.

Charity Pierce, 38, is trying to lose enough weight to qualify for gastric bypass surgery. She believes surgery is the only way she'll be healthy enough to marry her 21-year-old boyfriend, Tony Sauer.

"I'm determined not to get married at home." I want to be able to walk up the aisle," she told Barcroft TV. "We both love country music so I plan to wear a wedding dress, cowboy boots and cowgirl hat and Tony will be in jeans and cowboy boots."..............

But wait it gets better!

Sauer isn't just Pierce's lover and confidant. His brother, Jimmy, had a previous relationship with Pierce that produced her 18-year-old daughter, Charly...........Gasp!!!...........

Is she the only morbidly obese woman in town? He couldn't find his own?

But wait, it gets better!

Sauer first met Pierce when he was 8 and she was 25. They reconnected at a party three years ago.

"After Charly was born I didn’t often see Jimmy, so we weren’t ever a couple," she said. “When I met Tony, he seemed very mature for his age and we just got on.”

In the early days of their courtship, Pierce recalled that she and her boyfriend werehaving sex "up to four times a day". 

She has since developed lymphedema, a condition that has caused extreme swelling in her left leg and hip, and that has cut into her sex life.

"The lymphedema feels like another whole person. It feels like cinder blockshanging off you all the time". Pierce sad.

Sauer says Pierce's size isn't an issue, but he worries she could die.

Although she has reduced her daily caloric intake from 10,000 to 1,200, Pierce has only lost 22 pounds in the last few months. She believes gastric bypass surgery could help, but local doctors won't operate until she loses at least 200 pounds.

There is a doctor in Houston who is willing to operate on patients who weigh more than 600 pounds, she said. To get there, she needs to raise $5,000 to pay for an ambulance -- the only vehicle that can transport her.

Pierce has set up a GoFundMe page and has raised $2,338 so far.

If the Houston doctor believes she's a good candidate for surgery, her experience could be filmed for the TLC series, "My 600 lb Life"

When doctors brought a set of heavy-duty scales to Pierce’s home, she topped the scales at 765 pounds, more than 122 pounds heavier than Pauline Potterwho is recognized by Guinness World Records as the world's heaviest living woman.

"Seeing those figures appear on the scales was such a shock. I didn’t expect that. It was devastating," she said.


As the saying goes, "One man's trash is another man's treasure." So be careful what you throw away.

Shirley Nelson of Boulder, Colorado was on her way into the thrift store, when she saw a man getting out of his car carrying an old, weathered violin case. He was on his way in to donate it. 

Nelson, who has been tinkering with learning to play the violin for about eight years and whose daughter plays in a youth orchestra, intercepted his path. 

"It was all beaten up. It smelled and looked like hardly anything," she says. "But I felt something with the case -- this really positive energy." 

Inside, she found a chipped violin with broken strings and a dusty, used violin bow. On a whim, she asked if he'd sell the case and its contents to her on the spot for all the cash in her wallet: $15. The man, who was presumably about to get nothing for the donation anyway, took the money and handed her the case. 

She brought the case and its contents to Eric Paulu, one of the rare, professional bow-makers and experts in the state and one of only a few dozen across the country. She'd only met him once before, when he repaired her daughter's bow. She wondered if her find was worth anything. 

"I had to warn her, because there are a lot of imitations made -- imitation fine bows, fakes, in the way there are fake Picassos," Paulu says. "I told her not to get her hopes up." 

Then he opened the case. 

"Violins and bows end up in thrift stores and pawn shops and antique stores all the time. This is not what's unusual," Paulu says. "What's unusual is it had something of real remarkable value inside the case."

He recognized the wood: Pernambuco, from Brazil, the best wood for a top-of-the-line bow. 

This led him to examine the metal parts. They had tarnished black-grey, not green, indicating they were sterling silver, not nickel silver, and they were accented with a special engraved ornamentation. 

Then he saw the brand: Eugene Sartory. A famous 20th-century French master bow-maker. Paulu estimated the bow was authentic, about 100 years old. And the $15 cast-away item was worth at least $10,000. 

After a few small crack repairs, some wood straightening and new horsehair, Paulu values the bow around $16,000. 

Hmmm, I wonder if my limited edition Mr. T action figure, complete with gold chains and tools was worth anything? Too late now.


Catching Feelings On Facebook

For the most part I am a pretty easy going guy. It takes a lot to upset me, I rarely get emotional, and I can easily put most things into perspective. I haven't always been that way. But at the age of 43 I am a seasoned man forged in the fire, and built by life. That's not to say that I don't still have a long way to go. After all I still have many lessons ahead of me. But I'd like to think that there are some things that I would never do simply because I am too mature to do them. With that being said, there are some things that a grown man, especially a 30  or 40 something year old man, should never do.........
It is an excruciatingly painful experience for me to read the sad and pitiful posts written by a grown "behind", ( and I use the word "behind" because this is a family blog), who decides to reveal his inner most feelings and emotions for all of his Facebook world to see. It's not cute, it's not attractive, and it's definitely not cool! I can guarantee you that the same woman that you're wasting text tears for is probably letting her friends and her Mama read your posts, as they shake their heads and chuckle at you being SOFT! S O F T.
Cut it out. Work your issues out away from the internet, and stop wearing your heart on your sleeve.
No good will ever come out of it.
If you're reading this you might be "hot" right about now. But only if you KNOW that this is you. If it's not you, then it shouldn't matter. But if you have an issue with anything that I wrote contact me at But if only only if you recognize yourself.


The $6 House

This is a story that I had to read 3 different times from 3 different media outlet's to believe, and I am still having trouble digesting it.

A widow has been told for the second time by a Pennsylvania court that her home's sale at auction after she failed to pay property taxes is valid - she owed only $6.30 at the time it was sold.

Eileen Battisti, 53, of Aliquippa, lost legal rights to her $280,000 home over two years ago after failing to pay the paltry sum but has made multiple appeals on grounds she did not know it was owed.

The most recent decision made last week denied her request to reverse the September 2011 sale of a house she is still reportedly living in.

'I paid everything, and didn't know about the $6.30,' Battisti said. 'For the house to be sold just because of $6.30 is crazy.'

She had previously owed other taxes, the court noted, but at the time of the sale she owed just $235, including other interest and fees.

Beaver County Common Pleas Judge Gus Kwidis wrote in his ruling that the county tax claim bureau complied with notification requirements in state law before the auction.

'There is no doubt that (she) had actual receipt of the notification of the tax upset sale on July 7, 2011, and Aug. 16, 2011,' the judge wrote. 'Moreover, on Aug. 12, 2011, a notice of sale was sent by first class mail and was not returned.'

Battisti also admitted to receiving those notices, according to the judge.

He wrote in the ruling there “is no doubt' Battisti “had actual receipt” of them.

The property sold for about $116,000, and she is entitled to $108,039 if subsequent appeals are unsuccessful.

'She's going to get that money, but she's going to lose her house. All the notice requirements were met,' wrote Kwidis. 'In tax assessment laws, even if I feel sorry for her, I can't do anything to help her.

'Everyone felt bad about it.'

Evidently not bad enough


Her beloved home: Battisti's house was sold at far less than even half market value

Botched Execution Kills Death Row Inmate

In most cases I am against the death penalty, and although I may face criticism for having caveates to my vehement opposition I believe that I am justified in feeling the way that I do. The fact is, while there are some who are wrongfully convicted and wrongfully executed. There are inmates who's crimes are so heinous, and so evil, that they do not deserve to live among us. So excuse me if I don't shed a tear for Clayton Lockett

Oklahoma prison officials halted Lockett's execution after botching the delivery of a new three drug lethal injection cocktail  but he died anyway.

The state postponed the execution of a second prisoner scheduled to die Tuesday night as defense lawyers called for an independent investigation and the dead man's family demanded answers.

"Why? Why? Why?" Clayton Lockett's stepmom, Ladonna Hollins, wailed in a phone interview as witness accounts of the execution began trickling out.

Robert Patton, the director of the Oklahoma Department of Corrections, said the intravenous line into Lockett's arm blew out.

Lockett, on death row for shooting 19-year-old Stephanie Nieman with a sawed-off shotgun and watching as two accomplices buried her alive in 1999, suffered a heart attack and died at 7:06 p.m. CT, officials said.

Media witnesses reported that soon after the execution began with a combination of drugs that have been used in other states but not by Oklahoma. It became apparent there was a problem.

Lockett, 38, was declared unconscious 10 minutes after the first drug was administered, but three minutes later he began breathing heavily, writhed on the gurney, clenched his teeth and strained to lift his head. But his pain probably pales in comparison to be blasted with a shotgun and burned alive.

Lockett tried to talk and appeared to say the word, "Man," before prison officials lowered the blinds, blocking the view of those in the gallery, according to a reporter who was a witness.

Hollins, who did not attend the execution, said she was horrified by the details.

"When they opened up the curtain, he was still alive. He was alive after they injected him! It did not do the job. They screwed it up," she said. "If they cannot effectively execute a person, then don't do it. What is wrong with this system?"

The complications are sure to figure heavily in the growing debate over lethal injections, from the drugs that states use to kill prisoners to the secrecy surrounding the pharmacies that supply them.

Lockett and fellow death-row inmate Charles Warner won a delay in their executions when Oklahoma revealed it could not obtain the pentobarbital it had been using and scrambled to put in place a new protocol: the sedative midazolam, the paralytic pancuronium bromide and heart-stopping potassium chloride.

The two men tried and failed to force the state to reveal where it got the new drugs, arguing they needed the information to ensure the chemicals would be untainted and effective.

Hollins, who expressed sympathy for his victim's family, said her son had made his peace with the idea that he would be executed but feared a painful end.

"I thank God he doesn't have to go through it anymore," she said. "He did a bad thing and he died a bad way. Nobody else should have to die like that."

Deanna Parker, Lockett’s aunt, said what happened in the death chamber "was exactly what he feared."

"That is why he was fighting. He wasn't just fighting for him, he was fighting for the men after him, too," she said.

She faulted Gov. Mary Fallin for pushing ahead with the execution amid clashing legal opinions about whether the state should proceed without revealing the source of its drugs.

"I would like to say to her, 'She is not God.'"

Fallin said Tuesday evening that she has ordered a review of the execution process, but appeared to have a somewhat different explanation to what happened, saying the lethal injection was “ineffective.”

"I have asked the Department of Corrections to conduct a full review of Oklahoma's execution procedures to determine what happened and why during this evening's execution of Clayton Derrell Lockett," Fallin said in a statement.

Fallin said Lockett's execution was halted when it “appeared the lethal injection administered to him was ineffective.”

The execution of Warner, who was convicted of raping and killing his roommate's 11-month-old child in 1997, was postponed for 14 days.

Madeline Cohen, Warner’s attorney, called for a moratorium on executions in Oklahoma.

"This botched execution should give Oklahoma serious pause. No other executions should take place until there has been an opportunity for a full investigation," she said.

She said the probe should include an autopsy by independent pathologist, full transparency as well as information about the source, preparation and administration of the drugs.

She disputed the prison’s contention that he blew a vein.

"That's garbage. That's dissembling." Lockett "did not have a vein issue,” she said. “He was not an IV drug user. He was healthy. He had bulging veins."

Before Lockett's execution, his victim's family issued a brief written statement in which they recalled that she loved children and had worked at Bible school.

"She was the joy of our life," they said. "We are thankful this day has finally arrived and justice will finally be served."


Tuesday, April 29, 2014

Donald Sterling: Racist

By now most of us have heard about or maybe even heard the secretly recorded racist comments that Los Angelos Clippers owner Donald Sterling made to his half Black girlfriend.

Sterling clearly has a "slave master" mentality in reference to the players on his team. His talk of feeding, and providing housing for them as if they are nothing more than live stock or cattle makes his mentality crystal clear. These despicable comments have shocked the world and disturbed millions. 
But perhaps the most shocking detail is the fact that Donald Sterling is Jewish. 
It has been said that there is a parallel between the African-American struggle and the Jewish struggle.  So much so that many Jewish Americans stood side by side with African-Americans during the civil rights movement. Some have even been instrumental within the movement. So to think that anyone of Jewish descent would think or say anything so disgusting and reprehensible is almost mind boggling. It's almost as if he is so far removed from the struggles that are the legacy of his culture that he has forgotten. The fact of the matter is Sterling is out of touch, far removed, and probably cannot identify with what his people have gone through. Even though at the age of 81 he has lived through some of the most pivotal times in history. Being a Billionaire has allowed him to transcend race, color, and ethnic background. Classism and racism go hand in hand. Those who control the wealth in this country have little if any empathy for those who are not wealthy regardless of color, gender, or creed. So it is not at all surprising that Sterling feels the way that he does. The only color that he values is green, and the only culture that he identifies with is economic.

3 days after the scandal broke, Sterling has been banned for life by the NBA.

Commissioner Adam Silver said he will try to force the controversial owner to sell his franchise. Sterling has also been fined $2.5 million, and Silver made no effort to hide his outrage over the comments.

"I fully expect to get the support I need from the other NBA owners I need to remove him," Silver said.

The rebuke, which came three days after the scandal broke, is the harshest penalty ever issued by the league and one of the stiffest punishments ever given to an owner in professional sports. Silver said a league investigation found the NBA's longest-tenured owner was in fact the person on the audiotapes that were released over the weekend.

"We stand together in condemning Mr. Sterling's views," Silver said. "They simply have no place in the NBA."

Sterling acknowledged he was the man on the tape, Silver said.

Sterling is immediately barred from attending any NBA games or practices, be present at any Clippers office or facility, or participate in any business or player personnel decisions involving the team.

He also cannot participate in any league business going forward. It's unclear how he will respond, and a lawsuit certainly seems possible. But no matter what course of action Sterling decides to take, it will not make up for the fact that he is a vile human being.


Saturday, April 26, 2014

To Serve Protect & Break A ______'s Neck

Last weekend I watched the Spike Lee classic "Do The Right Thing" and it brought back at lot of memories. Lee did a remarkable job in capturing that particular moment in time,1989. Those year's were pivotal for both me and New York City. I turned 18, graduated high school, and got my drivers license. I grew up in the eighties, and came of age in New York in the eighties. It was a decade in which police brutality seemed to make front page news almost every year with its victims receiving little or no justice, or peace. Here are just a few of their stories.

A few days before Halloween in 1984 Eleanor Bumpurs pulled a knife on NYPD officers when she was being evicted from her apartment. Officer Steven Sullivan fired 2 shots from his 12 gage shot gun. One pellet struck Bumpers in the hand and the other nine struck her in the chest. killing her. Sullivan was tried and acquitted in 1987, but in 1990 the city put and end to all legal proceedings relating to the case by agreeing to pay the Bumpurs family $200,000, indicating culpability on their part but not directly admitting guilt.

In 1987 Prosecutors investigating the death in city custody of 28-year-old Yvonne Smallwood were faced with conflicting reports from witnesses about her struggles with the police and with problems in determining the origin of a fatal blood clot in her leg.

The contradictions and uncertainty point up the difficulty of establishing a case against any individual in the Dec. 9 death, which came after she spent a total of six days in courts, hospitals and jails waiting for an arraignment on assault charges.

Lawyers for her family and for the man she lived with assert that she died as a direct result of police brutality. 

However, the lawyers have provided differing accounts of where exactly they believe she was fatally injured.

At least six witnesses to confrontations between police officers and Miss Smallwood said in interviews that they saw nothing to back up the charges by Miss Smallwood's companion that the police had kicked and beaten her. A seventh witness, made available by one of the lawyers for an interview, said he did see the police beat her at the time of her arrest on Dec. 3.

Five witnesses reached independently said that the 275-pound woman was flailing wildly at the officers and trying to bite them and that the officers restrained her but did not use what the witnesses considered excessive force. A sixth witness, a city social worker provided by Mr. Harper's lawyer, C. Vernon Mason, for an interview, said the woman was ''thrown to the ground'' and kicked by the officers.

Edmund Perry was a 17-year-old Harlem resident who was shot to death by a plainclothes policeman on June 12, 1985. The case briefly generated a firestorm of protest in New York City when it was revealed that Perry was an honor student and was enrolled to attend Stanford on a scholarship. However, 23 witnesses claimed that Perry and his brother had attempted to mug the officer, and the shooting was ruled justifiable.

Lee Van Houten, a 24-year-old plainclothes policeman, was on assignment in the Morningside Park section of Manhattan on the night of June 12, 1985, when he was assaulted by two men who attempted to mug him. According to Van Houten, he was approached from behind and yanked to the ground by his neck, where two black men beat him and demanded that he give them money. He drew his gun from his ankle holster and fired three times, hitting Edmund Perry in the abdomen. The other attacker fled, and was later identified by witnesses as Jonah Perry, Edmund's brother. 

Van Houten was cleared of any culpability in the shooting. Jonah Perry, an alumnus of the Westminster School in  SimsburyConnecticut was later put on trial for assaulting Van Houten. He was found not guilty.


Thursday, April 24, 2014

The Gay Former KKK Member and The Black Male Prostitute

The pathology of racist's is confusing and inigmatic. They hate everybody who isn't just like them unless the people in question happen to be movie stars, famous athletes or can be objectified sexually. Then it's ok to be black because it becomes a small part of who they are. Small enough to be overlooked because the talent of a famous African-American can be utilized for entertainment.

Glenn Miller, the former North Carolina KKK leader who ran for governor in the 1980s, made national headlines last week after be charged with murdering three people in a shooting rampage outside two Jewish facilities in Kansas.

 This craven killer was given a new Social Security number and a new name Frazier Glenn Cross in the 1990s when he entered the Federal Witness Protection Program.

 In the 1980s, the self proclaimed white supremacist, anti-Semite, and anti-gay hate monge was caught by police in an unlikely compromised situation with a black prostitute who was really a man.

By all indications Miller hates African-American's and homosexuals because he vehemently despises his own deep seeded desires.

Miller, formerly of Johnston County just southeast of Raleigh, first rose to prominence leading a local chapter of the Ku Klux Klan which later became known as the White Patriot Party. In 1984, he tried to earn the Democratic Party nomination for North Carolina governor. He followed that in 1986 with an attempt to gain the Republican nomination for a North Carolina Senate seat.

So in addition to being confused about his sexual proclivities he was also confused about his own party affiliation.

"He was a blowhard who liked to be in front of a crowd. He liked to whip the crowd up and get the emotions running high. But I never saw in him the actual consummation of the act. It was like he's a player on a stage," recalled former federal prosecutor Doug McCullough.

McCullough is now a judge on the North Carolina Court of Appeals after spending 17 years as a federal prosecutor. Back in the 1980s, he investigated allegations Miller and his group plotted the assassination of a leader of the Southern Poverty Law Center, a group committed to exposing the activities of white supremacist organizations.

In 1987, McCullough sat at a table with Miller as he agreed to flip and become a government informant. Miller agreed to plead guilty to possessing hand grenades and sending through the mail what he called a "declaration of war" on minorities, homosexuals, and others.

He was sentenced to five years in prison in exchange for testimony against other white supremacists.

"We secured a number of convictions with his assistance and in our view we had removed him from a leadership role in the White Patriot Party, because now he was in jail," explained McCullough.

Miller only served three years in prison. Then, he entered the Federal Witness Protection Program. The government gave him a new name, a new Social Security number, and moved him to Iowa at taxpayer expense.

"Obviously, once he served his sentence, he couldn't come back to where his old compatriots were because then he would be at risk, so they had to put him somewhere safe," said McCullough.

Speaking in reference to Miller being caught in a car in the middle if a sex act with a Black male prostitute dressed as a Black woman.

"It was pretty shocking," said McCullough.  "...because of his personal stances that he had taken and what he was now accused of engaging in."

The facts speak for themselves, and people can draw their own conclusion about how incongruous something like that is," he offered.

Miller did not face charges in connection with the incident. McCullough explained that's likely because the government was pursuing the much bigger case against him.

According to a 1987 sentencing memorandum from federal prosecutors, if Miller had not become an informant, and if the government had pursued all charges against him, he could have faced a 100-year sentence if convicted.

We asked McCullough if it's possible Miller would still be in prison and three people in Kansas would still be alive.

"Not possible. You have to take into context types of sentences that were actually being imposed and the types of offenses he had committed," McCullough explained.

He said Miller would have served no more than 10 to 12 years.

But in Kansas City, they're left with a troubling question. Did the government make the right decision in offering a plea deal and a new life for Miller in the witness protection program? The answer is unequivically no. The government unleashed a proverbial dragon by not forcing Miller to stand trial for his atrocities, and years later 3 people in Kansas paid with their lives.


Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Some Legal Immigrants Are Deported, But Justin Bieber Stays

Here's a surprising fact. More immigrants both legal and illegal have been deported during The Obama Administration than any other presidency. So much so in fact, that in some circles he is known as "The Deporter and Chief". While I have no problem with immigrants being deported for committing crimes. I vehemently take issue with the fact the the White House has remained silent in the wake of a petition with 270,000 signatures asking for the deportation of pop star, and public menace, Justin Bieber.

You might not care about the Canadian and his "beliebers," but the 20-year-old's misbehavior and run-ins with the law raise some serious questions about immigration law enforcement. Like, is Bieber getting some serious special treatment?

 Bieber is here legally. But it's not only illegal immigrants who are receiving deportation orders.

The Immigration Policy Center estimated that 10% of the people deported between 1997 and 2007 were legally living in the United States.

While the Obama administration deported nearly 1.6 million people in the last four years, it's unclear how many were in the country legally.

The administration doesn't reveal those statistics. An immigration tracking division of Syracuse University, TRAC, is currently suing the Department of Homeland Security for failing to release a wide range of data on deportations and detentions.

But immigration advocates believe the number has gone up since President Obama came into office, not only due to an increase in deportations, but also because of anecdotal evidence.

They are seeing an increase in home raids of legal residents and there are stories like that of Navy veteran Howard Dean Baily, who was deported in 2010 over a years-old drug offense. 

So is Bieber been allowed to reside here in America because of his fame, because the president's daughter's are Beiber fans, or because he is not considered to be a serious enough threat?  


The Expectation Of Appreciation

There was a time when most people would make the sacrifice, and do the hard right instead of the easy wrong. But times have changed, and whoever said that change was good is definitely a cock eyed optimist. Because all change is not good. It seems as if some societal advances have stymied character development. These days if anybody does anything that even resembles right, they want instant gratification, and they expect instant recognition as if being moral is an exception deserving of reward. But the fact of the matter is that most times there is no immediate tangible reward for doing the right thing. The reward should be the feeling that we get when we take the proper course of action. The gratification should be in doing the deed, & not being rewarded for doing the deed. Most times there will be little or no appreciation from people for taking the high road. But your mind, your body and your soul will  continuously be blessed.


Monday, April 21, 2014

Just When You Thought You Heard It All News (4-26-2014)

Teenagers do crazy things. I know I did my share back it the days. But there is a fine line between crazy and stupid, and this kid crossed it.

A 16-year-old boy who stowed away in the wheel well of a plane after getting into a fight with his parents is "lucky to be alive" after surviving a lack of oxygen and cold temperatures during a five-hour flight from California to Hawaii.
 He might have been suffering from lack of oxygen long before that.

"He was unconscious for the lion's share of the flight," FBI spokesman Tom Simon told the local media, after the boy was found once the plane landed in Hawaii last Sunday night. "Kid's lucky to be alive."

Simon said security footage from California's San Jose airport confirmed that the Santa Clara, Calif., teen climbed a fence to get to Hawaiian Airlines Flight 45 Sunday morning.

When the Boeing 767 landed in Maui, some five hours later, the boy hopped down from the wheel well and began wandering the runway. Airline personnel noticed the boy and notified airport security.

The FBI questioned the boy, who had no identification. He was medically screened, found to be unharmed and was seen sitting upright on a stretcher as he was being taken to a hospital. Authorities said the boy was released to child protective services and was not charged with a crime.

"Our primary concern now is for the well-being of the boy, who is exceptionally lucky to have survived," airline spokesperson Allison Croyle said.

This isn't the first time that someone has taken an unauthorized flight in the wheel well of a plane. According to AP, in August a 13- or 14-year-old boy in Nigeria stowed away in a wheel well of a domestic flight and survived a 35-minute trip. Others have not been so lucky. In 2010 a 16-year-old died after stowing away in a flight from Charlotte, N.C., to Boston. And in 2012 a man died after he slipped from the wheel well and fell onto a suburban London street as a flight from Angola began its descent.


Talk about a powder keg. 
Palcohol may soon be at a liquor store near you. The product was recently approved for consumption by the Federal Government, which means society could well be on its way to snorting itself into oblivion. But that's NOT HOW IT'S SUPPOSED TO BE USED, PEOPLE.

From the company's site:

We have seen comments about goofballs wanting to snort it. Don't do it! It is not a responsible or smart way to use the product. To take precautions against this action, we've added volume to the powder so it would take more than a half of a cup of powder to get the equivalent of one drink up your nose. You would feel a lot of pain for very little gain. Just use it the right way.

But the company, which also says its product can be sprinkled on food (vodka eggs, rum beef burger, gin BLT anyone?), insists that, when used as directed, Palcohol has as much alcohol as a regular mix drink. 

But powered alcohol just because it is, well, powered alcohol begs not to be used as directed by every idiot and dumb teenager looking for a new way to get high. 

Way to go Federal Government!!!

Ladies and gentleman, I'd like to present to some, and introduce to others, the grace of God!

A gospel song saved a 10-year-old Atlanta boy from his kidnapper. Willie Myrick said he was in his front yard and bent down to pick up money when somebody grabbed him and threw him in a car.

“He told me he didn’t want to hear a word from me,” Myrick said. That’s when Myrick began to sing a gospel song called “Every Praise.” The kidnapper started cursing and repeatedly told Myrick to shut up, but he wouldn’t. He sang the song for about three hours until the kidnapper let him out of the car.

The little boy ran to a nearby home and asked the resident to call his guardian.

Myrick recently got to meet “Every Praise” gospel singer Hezekiah Walker, and they sang the song together.

Police don’t have any leads on the suspect, but are hoping a sketch they released will generate tips.


Saturday, April 19, 2014


I believe in leaving the past in the past. Because it is impossible to move into the future without doing so. The problem is, sometimes our past can come back to haunt us with a vengeance, and while many of us have skeletons in our closets. Depending on what your past is, these skeletons can come back to life, wreek havoc in the present, and ruin your future.
This narrative is a prime example of what happens when your past catches up to you.

After he was convicted of armed robbery in 2000, Corneal Opus Anderson was sentenced to 13 years behind bars and told to await instructions on when and where to report to prison. Which seems quite unusual to me. But those instructions never came.

So Anderson didn't report. He spent the next 13 years turning his life around getting married, raising three kids, and learning a trade. He made no effort to conceal his identity or whereabouts. He paid taxes and traffic tickets, renewed his driver's license and registered his businesses.

But it was not until last year that the Missouri Department of Corrections discovered the clerical error that kept him free. Now he's fighting for release, saying authorities missed their chance to incarcerate him.

In a single day last July, Anderson's life was turned upside-down.

"They sent a SWAT team to his house," Anderson's attorney, Patrick Megaro, said. "He was getting his 3-year-old daughter breakfast, and these men with automatic weapons bang on his door."

Anderson, 37, was taken to Southeast Correctional Center in Charleston, Mo., to begin serving the sentence. A court appeal filed in February asks for him to be freed.

Anderson had just one arrest for marijuana possession on his record when he and a cousin robbed an assistant manager for a St. Charles Burger King restaurant on Aug. 15, 1999. The men, wearing masks, showed a gun (it turned out to be a BB gun) and demanded money that was about to be placed in a deposit box.

The worker gave up the bag of cash, and the masked men drove away. The worker turned in the car's license plate number.

Anderson was convicted and sentenced to 13 years in prison and waited for word on what to do next.

"His attorney said, 'Listen, they're going to get you some day, so just wait for the order,'" Megaro said. "As time goes by, the order never comes. What does a normal person believe? Maybe they forgot about it. It's only human nature to hope they just let it go. He really didn't know what to do.

"A year goes by, two years, five years, 10 years. He's thinking, 'I guess they don't care about me anymore,'" Megaro said.

So Anderson went about his life. Megaro said he was not a fugitive, was never on the run. In fact, just the opposite.

Megaro described Anderson as a model citizen. A married father who became a carpenter and started three businesses. He paid income and property taxes and kept a driver's license showing his true name and address. When he was pulled over for a couple of traffic violations, nothing showed up indicating he should be in prison.

That's why Anderson was shocked when the marshals arrived.

He now lives among the general population at Charleston. Megaro said Anderson is holding his ow barely.

"He's doing his best to keep his spirits up," Megaro said. "Each day that goes by, more hope is lost. It's a daily struggle for him."

Peter Joy, director of the Criminal Justice Clinic at the Washington University School of Law in St. Louis, said it isn't unusual in a country with such a high prison population for sentences to fall through the cracks. What is unusual, Joy said, is for it to go unnoticed for so long.

"The real tragedy here is that one aspect of prison is the idea of rehabilitation," Joy said. "Here we have somebody who has led a perfect life for 13 years. He did everything right. So he doesn't need rehabilitation."

What happens next isn't clear. Missouri Attorney General Chris Koster on Tuesday filed a court response that said the state is justified in making Anderson serve the sentence.

However, Koster wrote that Megaro could refile the case as an action against the director of the Department of Corrections, which could give Anderson credit for the time he was technically at large.

Megaro doubted that strategy would work. He said the law does not allow credit for time served when the convicted person was not behind bars.

"I don't think that's an option, unfortunately," Megaro said.

Instead, he's relying on case law. The last time anything like this happened in Missouri was 1912. In that case, the convicted man was set free, Megaro said.

Gov. Jay Nixon could also commute the sentence. A spokesman for Nixon declined to comment.

I would be amazed if his sentece was commuted, and despite the fact that Anderson became a family man and a productive member of society he has yet to pay his debt to society for his crime. With that being said, the Missouri Department of was dire lect in its duties. Robbery has a violent connotation so how do you forget to make sure that anyone who was convicted of committing a violent act is not taken into custody. Anderson is living proof that criminals can rehabilitate themselves but statistics show that the number of those who actually do, is extremely low. So the question is. Does Mr. Anderson, having beat the odds deserve to be incarcerated?


Puffy Gives Howard Commencement Speech.

When it was announced that rap mogul, entrepreneur, global icon, and music industry legend Sean Combs, also known as P. Diddy or Puffy to those of us over 40, would not only give the commencement speech at Howard University to a class of 1,800 graduating students, but would be given an honorary doctorate, I was surprized, but not shocked. After all it's no secret that as a society we value those who have achieved a certain level of fame as opposed to academic achievement. 
So despite the fact that Puffy dropped out of Howard, or as I like to call it, "The 13th Grade", after two years doesn't matter.
But what did surprize and shock me was the glaring double standard that insued. Mark Zuckerberg, the founder of Facebook also dropped our of college and was later asked to give the commencement speech at Harvard. The difference is that no one batted an eye or even seemed to care. But there was no shortage of internet commentary, or opinions when it comes to Puffy's May 10th appearance at Howard. The fact is, neither one of these men are shining examples of academic success but moreover, they are examples of entrepreneurial success. Which has little or nothing to do with time spent in the halls of academia. How is either man meant to inspire those who stand with degree in hand looking toward their futures when neither one of them has done so?


Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Just When a You Thought You Heard It All News (4-19-2014)

Some stories are weird, some stories are sad, and others are just disturbing. But occasionally I come across a narrative so bizarre that it encompasses all three of these elements and then some.

In 1966, when David Reimer was 8 months old, his circumcision was botched and he lost his penis to burns. Psychologist John Money suggested that baby David be given a sex change. The parents agreed, but what they didn’t know was that Money secretly wanted to use David as part of an experiment to prove his views that gender identity was not inborn, but rather determined by nature and upbringing. David was renamed Brenda, surgically altered to have a vagina, and given hormonal supplements — but tragically the experiment backfired. "Brenda" acted like a stereotypical boy throughout childhood, and the Reimer family began to fall apart. At 14, Brenda was told the truth, and decided to go back to being David. He committed suicide at the age of 38.

What is the most you've ever paid for a drink? $2, or $3 maybe? No, I am not talking about drinks at the club. Have you ever paid anywhere near $500 for a Solo cup full of anything? If you happen to be a rap mogul or an NBA player then don't answer that question.

 A man who faced a $525 fine for refilling an 89-cent soft drink at a Veterans Affairs hospital apparently will get off with a warning.

When Christopher Lewis of North Charleston, S.C., refilled his drink without paying Wednesday, a federal police officer gave him a ticket. Lewis is a construction worker and says he never noticed the signs and has refilled his drink before without paying.

VA spokeswoman Tonya C. Lobbestael said after reviewing what happened at the Ralph C. Johnson Center in Charleston, officials decided a warning was sufficient.

Lobbestael says the cafeteria at the center has signs posted in the drink machines indicating the cost of refills. Failing to pay for the refills is considered shoplifting.

Calling all cars. This is an all points bulletin. Be on the look out for a teenager with a bright yellow squirt gun. He has the potential to do extreme damage and bodily harm by using H2O as a weapon!

 A 10th-grader in Maine has been suspended for 10 days for having a bright yellow water gun.

The teen was suspended in accordance with Lewiston High School policy after the toy fell out of his backpack. The student wasn't identified.

School Superintendent Bill Webster is quoted as saying the that the suspension could be reduced and that administrators "will work to balance the discipline with the facts of the case."

He also says that water pistols, even the ones that don't look like guns, can be disruptive. 

Webster later announced that the wet t-shirt contest in the quad scheduled for 8th period was cancelled!

Across the country, schools are grappling with the issue of how to handle weapons, both real and fake. Some students have been suspended simply for pointing their fingers in the shape of a gun.

There is now a bill before Congress seeking a ban on imaginary bullets.


Tuesday, April 15, 2014

The Government Wants It & They Take It

Amid claims by the conservative right that the federal government is getting too big, and has too much power. The federal government did something that proves just how big and powerful it really is. There is no greater show of hubris, and potency than to do something totally ridiculous just because you can.

A few weeks ago, with no notice, the U.S. government intercepted Mary Grice’s tax refunds from both the IRS and the state of Maryland. Grice had no idea that Uncle Sam had seized her money until some days later, when she got a letter saying that her refund had gone to satisfy an old debt to the government, an extremely old debt.

In 1960 when Grice was 4, her father died, leaving her mother with five children to raise. Until the kids turned 18, Sadie Grice got survivor benefits from Social Security to help feed and clothe them.

Now, Social Security claims it overpaid someone in the Grice family in 1977. But they have no idea who. After 37 years of silence, and four years after Sadie Grice died, the ghoulish government is coming after her daughter. Why the feds chose to take Mary’s money, rather than her surviving siblings’, is a mystery and a shame.

Across the nation, hundreds of thousands of taxpayers who are expecting refunds this month are getting letters like the one Grice got instead. Informing them that because of a debt they never knew about, often a debt incurred by their parents, the government has confiscated their check. The move is as unscrupulous as it is disgraceful.

The Treasury Department has intercepted $1.9 billion in tax refunds already this year. $75 million of it is debt delinquent for more than 10 years, said Jeffrey Schramek, assistant commissioner of the department’s debt management service. The aggressive effort to collect old debts started three years ago, the result of a single sentence hidden within the farm bill lifting the 10-year statute of limitations on old debts to Uncle Sam.

No one seems eager to take credit for reopening all these long-closed cases. A Social Security spokeswoman says the agency didn’t seek the change, ask Treasury. Treasury says it wasn’t us, try Congress. Congressional staffers say the request probably came from the bureaucracy. But they are the bureaucracy.

The only explanation the government provides for suddenly going after decades-old debts comes from Social Security spokeswoman Dorothy Clark: 

“We have an obligation to current and future Social Security beneficiaries to attempt to recoup money that people received when it was not due.”

Since the drive to collect on very old debts began in 2011, the Treasury Department has collected $424 million in debts that were more than 10 years old. Those debts were owed to many federal agencies, but the one that has many Americans howling this tax season is the Social Security Administration, which has found 400,000 taxpayers who collectively owe $714 million on debts more than 10 years old. The agency expects to have begun proceedings against all of those people by this summer.

“It was a shock,” said Grice, 58. “What incenses me is the way they went about this. They gave me no notice, they can’t prove that I received any overpayment, and they use intimidation tactics, threatening to report this to the credit bureaus.”

Grice filed suit against the Social Security Administration in federal court in Greenbelt this week, alleging that the government violated her right to due process by holding her responsible for a $2,996 debt supposedly incurred under her father’s Social Security number.

Social Security officials told Grice that six people, Grice, her four siblings and her father’s first wife, whom she never knew, had received benefits under her father’s account. The government doesn’t look into exactly who got the overpayment, they engage in a "fishing policy" to seek compensation from the oldest sibling and work down through the family until the debt is paid.

On its website The Federal Trade Commission advises Americans that “family members typically are not obligated to pay the debts of a deceased relative from their own assets.” But Social Security officials say that if children indirectly received assistance from public dollars paid to a parent, the children’s money can be taken, no matter how long ago any overpayment occurred.

“While we are responsible for collecting delinquent debts owed to taxpayers, we understand the importance of ensuring that debtors are treated fairly,” Treasury’s Schramek said in a statement. He said Treasury requires that debtors be given due process.

Social Security spokeswoman Clark, who declined to discuss Grice’s or any other case, even with the taxpayer’s permission, said the agency is “sensitive to concerns about our attempts to arrange repayment of overpayments.” She said that before taking any money, Social Security makes “multiple attempts to contact debtors via the U.S. Mail and by phone.”

But Grice, who works for the Food and Drug Administration and lives in Takoma Park, in the same apartment she’s resided in since 1984, never got any notice about a debt.

Social Security officials told her they had sent their notice to her post office box in Roxboro, N.C. Grice rented that box from 1977 to 1979 and never since. And Social Security has Grice’s current address: Every year, it sends her a statement about her benefits.

“Their record-keeping seems to be very spotty,” she said.

Treasury officials say that before they will take someone’s refund, the agency owed the money must certify the debt, meaning there must be evidence of the overpayment. But Social Security officials told Grice they had no records explaining the debt.

“The craziest part of this whole thing is the way the government seizes a child’s money to satisfy a debt that child never even knew about,” says Robert Vogel, Grice’s attorney. “They’ll say that somebody got paid for that child’s benefit, but the child had no control over the money and there’s no way to know if the parent ever used the money for the benefit of that kid.”

Grice, the middle of five children, said neither of her surviving siblings, one older, one younger, has had any money taken by the government. When Grice asked why she had been selected to pay the debt, she was told it was because she had an income and her address popped up the correct one this time.

Grice found a lawyer willing to take her case without charge. Vogel is insensed about the constitutional violations he sees in the retroactive lifting of the 10-year limit on debt collection. “Can the government really bring back to life a case that was long dead?” the lawyer asked. “Can it really be right to seize a child’s money to satisfy a parent’s debt?”

But many other taxpayers whose refunds have been taken say they’ve been unable to contest the confiscations because of the cost, because Social Security cannot provide records detailing the original overpayment, and because the citizens,following advice from the IRS to keep financial documents for just three years, had long since trashed their own records.

In Glenarm, Illinois, Brenda and Mike Samonds have spent the past year trying to figure out how to get back the $189.10 tax refund the government seized, claiming that Mike’s mother, who died 33 years ago, had been overpaid on survivor’s benefits after Mike’s father died in, get this, 1969.

“It was never Mike’s money, it was his mother’s,” Brenda Samonds said. “The government took the money first and then they sent us the letter. We could never get one sentence from them explaining why the money was taken.” The government mailed its notice about the debt to the house Mike’s mother lived in 40 years ago.

The Social Security spokeswoman said the agency uses a private contractor to seek current addresses and is supposed to halt collections if notices are returned as undeliverable.

After hours on the phone trying and failing to get information about the debt Mike’s mother was said to owe, the Samondses gave up.

The narrative continues. After waiting on hold for two hours with Social Security last week, Ted Verbich also concluded it wasn’t worth the time or money to fight for the $172 the government intercepted last month. 

Keeping anyone waiting on the phone for two hours is nothing more than an evasive customer stall tactic design to frustrate the caller. The best offense is to hold on for dear life.

In 1977, Verbich, now 57, was in college at the University of Maryland when he took a full-time job in an accountant’s office. Because he was earning income, he knew he had to give up the survivor’s benefits his mother had received since his father died, when Verbich was 4. But his $70 monthly checks, “They helped with the car payment,” he said kept coming for a short time after he started work, and Verbich was notified in 1978 that he had to repay about $600. He did.

Thirty-six years later, with no notice, “they snatched my Maryland tax refund,” said Verbich, a federal worker who has lived at the same address in Glendale, Md,. for 30 years and regularly receives Social Security statements there. The feds insisted that he owed $172 but could provide documentation to back up the claim.

Verbich has given up on getting his refund, but he wants a receipt stating that his debt to his country is resolved.

“I’ll put in the request,” a Social Security clerk told Verbich, “but in reality, you’ll never get anything.”

Grice was also told there was little point in seeking a waiver of her debt. Collections can only be halted if the person passes two tests, Clark said: The taxpayer must prove that he “is without fault, and that repayment of the overpayment would deprive the person of income needed for ordinary living expenses.”

More than 1,200 appeals have been filed on the old cases, Clark said; taxpayers have won about 10 percent of those appeals.

The Treasury initially held the full amount of Grice’s federal and state refunds, a total of $4,462. Last week, after The Washington Post inquired about Grice’s case, the government returned the portion of her refund above the $2,996 owed on her father’s account.

But unless the feds can prove that she ever received any of the overpayment, Grice wants all of her money back.

“Look, I love a good fight, especially for principle,” she said. “My mom used to say, ‘This country is carried on the backs of the little people,’ and now I see what she meant. This is really sad.”

Sad doesn't even begin to describe it. The same government that thought nothing of bailing out big banks is scrounging for what amounts to a little more than spare change to them. It's seems as if our government has become the equivalent of a school yard bully who insists on taking your lunch money day after day just because he can. Even though he has his own.