The Environmental Protection Agency was warned as early as July 2010 that a senior executive who claimed to be a CIA agent was collecting pay and bonuses not allowed by law but took no action for years, according to a new report from the agency's inspector general.
Wednesday, December 11, 2013
|Lilo shows off her new ankle bracelet. And her other prominent features.|
The report notes that DYRS [Department of Youth Rehabilitation Services] is informing juveniles of these consequences but states that the agency is "not regularly holding youths criminally or financially responsible for destroying the devices." "The lack of criminal enforcement combined with the ease of cutting devices has made cutting GPS devices a significant problem," the report says. It goes on to note that DYRS "often returns absconders who tamper with GPS devices to the same or similar community placements with another device, even after multiple tampering incidents."
Tyran McElrath was already in trouble with the law when he sneaked through a rear window of a Northwest [Washington] D.C. home last year in the course of a burglary.
Inside, the 18-year-old encountered an 81-year-old woman who was legally blind. He savagely beat her and ransacked her house.
The crime is detailed in court records that also explain how officials quickly caught the youth: He was wearing a GPS tracking device assigned to him by the city's juvenile justice agency.
This is the same thing as cameras. Its nice to have video of the crime, but if nobody comes around and busts the criminals, pretty soon they learn the cameras aren't really watching them.
Tuesday, December 10, 2013
President Obama, who is aboard Air Force One on his way to a memorial service for Nelson Mandela in South Africa, will sign a plastic gun ban "via autopen," an aide tells the Huffington Post.
"We expect the President to sign the reauthorization via autopen before the legislation expires at midnight," a White House aide is quoted as saying.
Then when he got there...
"Castro, he's shaking hands with Raúl Castro," said an excited Christiane Amanpour.
"As Christiane points out, President Obama just shook hands with Raúl Castro from Cuba," Chris Cuomo explained.
I guess you won't be able to buy a gun in the USA pretty soon. But on the bright side, you will be able to buy a reasonably priced Cuban cigar.
Monday, December 09, 2013
You can run out and buy it right here! Yeah, get right on that eh?
Studded with 16 rubies and 32 diamonds, this Christmas wreath is probably not one to hang on the front door.
The decoration — believed to be the world's most expensive wreath — is on sale for £2.8 million.
Created by a London florist, the wreath, above and below, contains a vivid red 17.49 carat ruby, a 3.03 carat yellow diamond and a Helleborus flower head containing 22 loose diamonds totalling 2.64 carats.
It is no place for children. Yet Dasani is among 280 children at the shelter. Beyond its walls, she belongs to a vast and invisible tribe of more than 22,000 homeless children in New York, the highest number since the Great Depression, in the most unequal metropolis in America.
Even her name, Dasani, speaks of a certain reach. The bottled water had come to Brooklyn's bodegas just before she was born, catching the fancy of her mother, who could not afford such indulgences. It hinted at a different, upwardly mobile clientele, a set of newcomers who over the next decade would transform the borough.
Dasani's circumstances are largely the outcome of parental dysfunction. While nearly one-third of New York's homeless children are supported by a working adult, her mother and father are unemployed, have a history of arrests and are battling drug addiction.
Yet Dasani's trials are not solely of her parents' making. They are also the result of decisions made a world away, in the marble confines of City Hall. With the economy growing in 2004, the Bloomberg administration adopted sweeping new policies intended to push the homeless to become more self-reliant. They would no longer get priority access to public housing and other programs, but would receive short-term help with rent. Poor people would be empowered, the mayor argued, and homelessness would decline.
But the opposite happened. As rents steadily rose and low-income wages stagnated, chronically poor families like Dasani's found themselves stuck in a shelter system with fewer exits. Families are now languishing there longer than ever — a development that Mr. Bloomberg explained by saying shelters offered "a much more pleasurable experience than they ever had before."
- Big screen TV.
- Electric piano
- Cell phones (yeah, plural)
- unwashed crap piled up all over the place
- Holes in the walls left unpatched by me, the renter
- seven kids.
I did not spend money on stuff I didn't need and couldn't afford.
I didn't leave my place looking like a disaster area.
I didn't have a bunch of children I couldn't look after or buy food and shoes for.
I didn't leave stuff busted when I could fix it myself. Hell, I even painted it.
[Phyllis May of Redmond, Wash] and her husband were going through the screening process [in St. Louis Missouri] when she noticed that one of her bags was missing.
"And the (TSA agent) held it up and said 'whose is this?'" she said. "I realized oh, my God this is my bag."
May said the TSA agent went through the bag, through the sewing supplies and found the two-inch long pistol.
"She said 'this is a gun,'" said May. "I said no, it's not a gun it's a prop for my monkey."
"She said 'If I held it up to your neck, you wouldn't know if it was real or not,' and I said 'really?'" said May.
The TSA agent told May she would have to confiscate the tiny gun and was supposed to call the police.
"I said well go ahead," said May. "And I said really? You're kidding me right, and she said no it looks like a gun."
Yeah, I feel way safer now. Thanks TSA!
Friday, December 06, 2013
'Nothing distinguishes pension debt in a municipal bankruptcy case from any other debt."
These thirteen words come from a ruling this week by US Bankruptcy Judge Steven Rhodes. In strictly legal terms, they're part of a larger decision that does little more than confirm the obvious: Detroit is bankrupt.
But make no mistake. The judge has set off a seismic shock that will reverberate far outside Detroit. For he has confirmed something fairly radical in the world of public employees: the law applies to workers for a bankrupt city much the same way it does to workers for a bankrupt company.
Cue the unionistas to start burning tires in the streets of Detroit. Because it wasn't frigged up enough already.
I also stopped listening to the radio. Commercials. Can't stand 'em. Media marketing wieners, take note.
Violence has long been a staple of US cable television shows, but most producers have been coy about sex -- until recently, when an explosion of explicit content flooded the small screen.
The titillatingly-titled "Masters of Sex" is the most obvious example, but while there are no recent studies most industry watchers say fornication has never been as widely on display on TV.
Pushing boundaries, the series includes multiple simulated orgasms and acres of nudity, as well as sex toys/research tools like one named the "Ulysses," basically a clear plastic vibrator with a camera inside, which films what happens in orgasm.
"Certainly TV, including broadcast TV, seems far, far more able to tackle subjects it previously didn't address," professor of cinema and television Richard Walter told AFP.
Many modern shows "contain sex and violence in ways that would have been unthinkable not too many years ago," added the academic from the University of California Los Angeles (UCLA).
|Remember, you can't un-see stuff.|
Thursday, December 05, 2013
The NSA does not target Americans' location data by design, but the agency acquires a substantial amount of information on the whereabouts of domestic cellphones "incidentally," a legal term that connotes a foreseeable but not deliberate result.
One senior collection manager, speaking on the condition of anonymity but with permission from the NSA, said "we are getting vast volumes" of location data from around the world by tapping into the cables that connect mobile networks globally and that serve U.S. cellphones as well as foreign ones. Additionally, data are often collected from the tens of millions of Americans who travel abroad with their cellphones every year.
In scale, scope and potential impact on privacy, the efforts to collect and analyze location data may be unsurpassed among the NSA surveillance programs that have been disclosed since June. Analysts can find cellphones anywhere in the world, retrace their movements and expose hidden relationships among the people using them.
See? The Phantom is never wrong. They really do track cell phone location, and have been doing so for some years now.
Monday, November 25, 2013
For police and sheriff's departments, which have scooped up 165 of the mine-resistant ambush-protected vehicles, or MRAPS, since they became available this summer, the price and the ability to deliver shock and awe while serving warrants or dealing with hostage standoffs was just too good to pass up.
"It's armored. It's heavy. It's intimidating. And it's free," said Albany County Sheriff Craig Apple, among five county sheriff's departments and three other police agencies in New York that have taken delivery of an MRAP.
Armored, heavy, intimidating and free. That's what's important to the Sheriff. He gets a new toy to haul out whenever he wants to scare somebody, and for parades, and maybe just to cruise around looking tough in.
Saturday, November 23, 2013
|Cheap like borscht.|
With its 12-foot wingspan, the low-flying Bat, which maxes out at 70 miles per hour, was able to jam radar during tests. That means the Pentagon will soon have the option of deploying a flexible, largely undetectable drone with radar-jamming capability to protect manned aircraft against radar and surface-to-air missile guidance systems.
|Snooperscope. Sticks to your phone.|
Launching a crowdsource funding campaign starting tomorrow on HWTrek.com, Psy Corporation is aiming to raise $60,000 to help bring the Snooperscope to fruition.
The Snooperscope connects to your phone via a secure peer-to-peer Wi-Fi connection and uses the screen to provide you with a look into the darkness draped world that your eyes could otherwise not see.
If it is funded via HWTrek, the Snooperscope will retail for $100. But early birds that help with the crowdfunding campaign can score one for $40 if they act fast.