You may have noticed that Marvel, DC and their various imprints have been expressing confusion for some years as to “what women want” from comics. So, I thought I would help them. More »Share on Facebook
We all think of Arabs and the Middle East as Islam…
There are Christians and every Middle East country…
For Centuries they where the majority…..
And It is a hard life for them….
Here’s a short piece on the daily violence against those in the Middle East who practice the Christian faith….
A how it isn’t on the front page of the media…..
From JEFFREY GOLDBERG @ The Atlantic…..
I’ve been struck over the past couple of days by the lackadaisical coverage of what seems to be the most important story coming out of the Middle East right now — the terrible attack early on New Year’s Day on a Coptic church in Egypt, in which 21 Christians were killed, and 79 people, mostly Christian, were injured. The attack, it seems, came from either domestic Egyptian Muslim extremists, or foreign, al Qaeda-influenced terrorists, but the meaning is mainly the same, no matter the exact perpetrator: The Salafist war on Christians in the Middle East is intensifying fairly rapidly, with profound consequences not only for Christians in the lands of their faith’s earliest history (keep in mind that Christianity had planted itself in Egypt well before the birth of Muhammad) but for the rights of all ethnic and religious minorities in the greater Middle East…..Share on Facebook
By Meteor Blades @ Dailykos….
“You’ve got to just develop as thick a skin as you can, understand that some people will disagree with you on a principled basis but other people will disagree with you for purely political and partisan reasons.”
— Eric H. Holder Jr.
The attorney general is apparently going to need that thick skin in the coming year. He’s going to be catching it from both sides in the 112th Congress, though presumably the main attacks will be coming from the Republicans who will control the House of Representatives. Charlie Savage at The New York Times writes:
Mr. Holder is a particularly juicy target because he presides over issues that have served as recurrent fodder for political controversy — including using the criminal justice system for terrorism cases, and federal enforcement of civil-rights and immigration laws.
More than most administration officials, he has served as a proxy for Republican attacks on what they see as President Obama’s left-leaning agenda. At least two 2012 possible Republican presidential hopefuls have already called for Mr. Holder’s resignation.
“It’s likely to be a difficult year,” said Bruce Buchanan, a political science professor at the University of Texas, Austin, who said Mr. Holder’s coming fights are likely to “attract press attention in a way that steps on other messages the Obama administration would like to have front and center.”
A good deal of the difficulties will come from the new head of the House Judiciary Committee, Lamar Smith of Texas, and Darrell Issa, the California Representative who will be chief of the Oversight and Government Reform Committee. With subpoena power, Issa, who has called President Obama “one of the most corrupt Presidents in modern times,” sees himself as a “whistleblower” instead of the bombastic blowhard so many others take him to be.
Although the first investigations will likely be into food and drug safety and economic matters such as Countrywide’s VIP program that allegedly gave public officials reduced-rate mortgages, the probes will undoubtedly turn to the administration soon enough. Among the issues: alleged inadequacy of the investigation of ACORN, the Justice Department’s dismissal of a case against the New Black Panthers, dealing with terrorism-related trials and the situation posed by Wikileaks, the latter being a subject that may also draw negative reactions to the department’s approach from Democrats. Holder may also catch grief from left-leaning Democrats upset about reshaped Miranda warnings for suspected terrorists and regulations regarding Internet wiretapping. Despite all the supposed concern for the rule of law, nobody on either side of the aisle will, of course, be talking about any war-crime prosecutions against the Cheney-Bush administration.
Holder told the Times he’s been in this spot before, having served as deputy attorney general in the Clinton administration when both the House and Senate under Republican control were a good deal more interested in overseeing the Justice Department than they even pretended to be during the eight years Bush and his pals did their utmost to turn the place into a partisan cesspool.
Wait …..It gets better that the headliner above…..
In Belgium, the government pays the salaries of all priests and bishops, and the salaries for teachers in Catholic schools……
No seperation of church and state there…..
The controversial prelate appointed less than a year ago by Pope Benedict XVI to push the liberal-leaning Catholic Church in Belgium in a more conservative direction has sparked yet another uproar by telling a government commission that the church has no obligation to compensate victims of sexual abuse by priests.
“The civil court must determine the compensation and the offender [the accused priest] must pay,” Archbishop André-Joseph Léonard of Mechelen-Brussels told a parliamentary commission in testimony three days before Christmas.
According to the National Catholic Reporter, which reported from Brussels on the testimony, commission members reacted with “surprised amazement” to Léonard’s comments and the exchange with the archbishop deteriorated from there.
The parliamentary commission was created after a church-backed inquiry last September turned up more than 475 cases of abuse by priests and lay workers since the 1950s. At least 13 of the victims committed suicide. As has happened in other European countries over the past year, the revelations scandalized Belgians and led to the government probe.
But unlike prelates in other countries, the Belgian church leadership, led by Léonard, has pushed back against the investigation……
Ah, They need to stop paying the freight in Beligum…..
If the government’s employee’s (The ARE being paid by the government, right?)
Are doing something wrong….
And they employee’s union refuses to address the problems..
They need to NOT be governmenet employee’s….
It’s that simple…..Share on Facebook
Julian Assange is afraid that if he is sent to the US to face criminal charges he’ll be the victim of violence “Jack Ruby style’…
He means get ‘wacked’….
No one in the US government wants to see that…..
And if and when he might end up here he would be protected……
Meanwhile Assange is trying to appeal to English supporters to make it know that he shouldn’t be sent to Sweden OR the US…..
Least they exert More displeasure on the English government…..
The Wikileaks Boss is getting paid starting soon retroactive from the first of the year…
So are the top people in the organization that is rapidly trying to turn itself into a bona-fide ‘news media’ organization to protect itself legally…
(sorta joining the media club so government’s will give it the protection of ‘freedom of speech’ while the barn door has already been opened…
[The founder of WikiLeaks Julian Assange speaks to members of the media as he leaves a police station in Beccles, England, Friday.]
WikiLeaker Julian Assange is afraid of getting whacked “Jack Ruby-style” in a U.S. jail.
The Wau Holland Foundation provides key back-office services for WikiLeaks’ operations by collecting donations and paying its bills. Last summer, WikiLeaks said it operated on about €150,000 a year.
Now, however, the foundation says it has paid about €380,000 in WikiLeaks expenses, with some invoices for the year still unprocessed. Some of that total is for hardware, Internet access and travel, Wau Holland spokesman Hendrik Fulda said. But a big factor in the leap is a recent decision to begin paying salaries to staff
So far, the Wau Holland Foundation—founded in 2003 to honor the legacy of the late computer hacker Wau Holland—has paid more than €100,000 in salaries for 2010, including about €66,000 euros to Mr. Assange, Mr. Fulda said.
Mr. Fulda says the WikiLeaks decision to compensate its staff—rather than rely on volunteers—ends nearly a year of internal debate. In order to professionalize its activities, WikiLeaks will now pay key personnel based on a salary structure developed by the environmental activist organization Greenpeace. Under the structure, Greenpeace department heads are paid about €5,500 euros in monthly salary, Mr. Fulda said.
The salaries will be paid retroactively to January 2010, Mr. Fulda said. So far, six WikiLeaks staff members have filed invoices requesting compensation, including at least one invoice for just one month of work, Mr. Fulda said. Other former staff members are expected to file for compensation in the coming weeks, he said.
Manfred Redelefs, head of the research unit at Greenpeace Germany, declined to comment on the specific pay structure at WikiLeaks but said, “Every organization is free to use the Greenpeace pay structure as their model.”
Another mounting cost for WikiLeaks relates to legal work. Lawyers acting on behalf of WikiLeaks have billed the document-leaking organization for about €30,000 euros in services. Going forward, that could become a much bigger cost for the organization, given that the U.S. has launched several broad investigations in the wake of WikiLeaks’ release of classified documents, which has angered the U.S. government…….Share on Facebook
Up until a month ago I didn’t know who this lady was…..
CD started asking about her a few weeks before the Mid-Term elections….
She had a tought time I remembered….
Running against a whole bunch of people….
Running to replace Jerry Brown in California ….
And NOT being hard to look at an biracial…..
Is gonna get you attention as a Democrat….
And campaigning for Barack Obama as the San Francisco AG isn’t bad either….
But starting your political career dating the Mayor of Frisco might be a problem for you carry on your back…..
Here’s something on the incoming Attorney General of California…..
A rising state in the NATIONAL Democratic party who is mentioned in the same breath as nation’s first biracial President….
Be sure to check the second linked piece which is more complete and comes from San Francisco….
There’s a growing buzz among Democrats about Kamala Harris.
“It’s flattering,” she told POLITICO, just weeks after claiming victory in a photo-finish race against Steve Cooley, her Republican opponent. Nevertheless, “these comparisons make me uncomfortable because I know what I want to do. I am really excited about being attorney general.”
(Word that some eager Democrats have dubbed her the “anti-Palin” draws a one-word reply: “oy.”)
Instead, what Harris mostly wants to talk about is an issue that’s almost entirely off the national radar.
“What I would like to contribute to the conversation,” she added, “is an in-depth discussion about what we can do to create smarter criminal justice policy.”
But Harris will have to do it over the Democrats’ growing buzz about her.
When she broke out of a six-candidate primary field in the race for attorney general, the San Francisco prosecutor won big endorsements from party heavyweights, including House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Sens. Barbara Boxer and Dianne Feinstein, as well as endorsements from labor unions like the Service Employees International Union and all of California’s top newspapers. She also was the only down ballot Democrat for whom President Obama fundraised this year.
That level of support — coupled with glowing profiles in national magazines like Ebony and The Daily Beast, as well as appearances on MSNBC’s “Morning Joe” and a Matt Lauer interview on the “Today” show — lead top Democrats to predict she will soon become a household name.
“She’s a rare talent who will be a national figure shortly,” said Chris Lehane, a former Clinton aide who is now a consultant in California. “People call her the female Obama. It’s more apt to say she is the female Obama that progressives thought they were voting for.”
Here’s a more extensive piece about Harris from San Francisco Weekly….
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He also has a 20 year old son we now know…..
And like the US State Department cables…..
He has been put out there for all to see….
Warts and all…..
It’s gonna get worst for him before it gets better….
(He did not like his inmates in prison)
He started all this….
What did he expect?
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What else would expect?
His case is being tried in the media it seems …..
(Carl Court/Agence France-Presse — Getty Images)
[Julian Assange, the founder of WikiLeaks, on Saturday. He faces sexual misconduct allegations.]
The Swedish report traces events over a four-day period in August when Mr. Assange had what he has described as consensual sexual relationships with two Swedish women. Their accounts, which form the basis of an extradition case against Mr. Assange, state that their encounters with him began consensually, but became nonconsensual when he persisted in having unprotected sex with them in defiance of their insistence that he use a condom.
The case has prompted widespread controversy, with supporters of Mr. Assange alleging that he is the victim, and the women are complicit, in an American-inspired vendetta seeking to punish WikiLeaks for posting of hundreds of thousands of secret American documents on the Internet.
The conspiracy, supporters of Mr. Assange have said, hinges on what they have described as an improbable coincidence: that he is facing potential criminal charges just as he is challenging the United States government. These critics have also pointed to possible political manipulation of the Swedish prosecutors office, which had dropped the most serious allegations against Mr. Assange, but later revived them.
But the police report and dozens of interviews in recent months with people in Sweden linked to the case suggest that the Swedish case could be less flawed than Mr. Assange’s supporters have suggested. And interviews with legal experts suggest that it would not be abnormal for such a high-level case to move up the hierarchy of prosecutors, and for those prosecutors to have disagreements over how to apply Sweden’s finely calibrated laws on sexual misconduct.
Still, the police report also provides support for a claim made by Mr. Assange’s supporters that the women involved seemed willing to continue their friendships with Mr. Assange after what they described as sexual misbehavior. The women did not decide to go to the police, the report shows, until they discovered by talking to each other that they had both been sexually involved with him and, by their accounts, had similar experiences……Share on Facebook
Click to play
From the BBC…..
The founder of whistle-blowing website Wikileaks, Julian Assange, has been granted conditional bail by a judge.
The 39-year-old was granted bail in London earlier this week but remained in jail after prosecutors objected.
He is fighting extradition to Sweden over sex assault allegations made by two women. He denies any wrongdoing.
Mr Justice Ouseley granted conditional bail at the Royal Courts of Justice and supporters put up £240,000 in sureties. His release is expected on Thursday.
However, the BBC understands he may not be freed until Friday because those who provided the finances must complete paperwork at a police station.
Mr Assange’s solicitor, Mark Stephens, said afterwards the bail appeal was part of a “continuing vendetta by the Swedes”.
He said: “We have won costs today but they should be paid by Sweden not the hard-pressed Crown Prosecution Service.”
There has been dispute over who was motivated to appeal against Mr Assange’s release, with Director of Public Prosecutions saying the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) was merely acting as “agents” on behalf of the Swedish government. Nils Rekke, from the Swedish Prosecutor’s Office, claimed it was “a purely British decision”Share on Facebook
From the BBC…..
Julian Assange was photographed inside a prison van on his way to court
The founder of whistle-blowing website Wikileaks has been granted bail in London on conditions including cash guarantees of £240,000.
But Julian Assange will remain in custody as prosecutors have two hours to lodge an appeal against bail.
The 39-year-old Australian is fighting extradition to Sweden, where he is accused of sexually assaulting two women – charges he denies.
Other bail conditions include having to give up his passport.
Mr Assange was bailed on condition he provide a security of £200,000 to the court, with two sureties guaranteed of a further £20,000 each.
He will also have to obey a curfew at an address in Suffolk, wear an electronic tag and report to a local police station every evening….Share on Facebook
This story has been around the block….
I have reported here about the condom thing as fact….
That appears to NOT be true…
The principal reason this guy is sitting in jail right now is he’s being charged with RAPE….
It appears that Julian Assange and his crew are also devious and distrustful….
The story about the condom angle is simply bullshit put out as disinformation to the media…..
Read the link for yourself….
It also appears that after the first couple of weeks of the story…
Assange’s REAL actions were swept under the rug by the media…
This guy isn’t a knight in white armour…..
It appears that he’s just a guy who does what he wants , and expects to be untouchable…
All of you out there rooting for him….
You could be rooting for a sexual predator
If the Jezebel (and NY Times, BBC and Guardian ) follow-up story is true….(after a trial)
The US won’t be getting a crack at the guy….
He’ll be in jail for a long time….
Where he belongs….
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A Dutch teenager is under arrest, suspected of helping to carry out cyber attacks against two major credit card companies that were allegedly masterminded by supporters of WikiLeaks, officials in the Netherlands said Thursday.
Police arrested the 16-year-old boy at his home in The Hague late Wednesday and said he admitted being involved in hacking the websites of MasterCard and Visa, The Wall Street Journal reported. Officers seized computers and hard drives in the house.
The boy, whose name was not released, will appear in court Friday.
Investigators believe he is part of a widespread, loosely coordinated online assault by WikiLeaks supporters against critics of the document-leaking website and its founder, Julian Assange, according to the Journal.
On Wednesday, it was reported their targets included prosecutors in Sweden, where Assange faces charges, the Swiss authority that froze the 39-year-old Australian’s bank account, and MasterCard and Visa, which ended their relationships with WikiLeaks……
Are they gonna try to do this?
From the LA Times….
Angry over the bombardment of leaks of classified material, top Obama administration officials are considering filing an extradition request to haveWikiLeaks founder Julian Assange face criminal charges, possibly for espionage.
Any such proceedings would set up a test of whether the 1st Amendment’s protection for a free press extends to a website with a worldwide audience.
“What we’re investigating is a crime under U.S. law,” Philip J. Crowley, the chief State Department spokesman, said Tuesday. “The provision of 250,000 classified documents from someone inside the government to someone outside the government is a crime.”
His remarks mirrored sharp words Monday from Atty. Gen. Eric H. Holder Jr., who said prosecutors are weighing not only espionage but other crimes possibly committed by the Australian citizen, who through his website postings has embarrassed U.S. diplomats and many foreign governments they deal with.
“We have a very serious criminal investigation that’s underway, and we’re looking at all of the things that we can do to try to stem the flow of this information,” Holder said.
Holder added that as prosecutors look beyond espionage, “there are other statutes, other tools that we have at our disposal.” Among them, law enforcement sources said, is charging Assange with receiving stolen property……..
There is this more detailed later view on the US efforts…..
Assange, who has been taunting world leaders by revealing sometimes embarrassing U.S. secrets, is now the center of an international tug of war, with his opponents calling him a dangerous agent against state secrecy and his supporters calling him a champion of the public’s right to know.
British authorities were holding Assange without bail after the 39-year-old Australian surrendered at a London police station early Tuesday following weeks of living under the radar. He now faces a legal proceeding next Tuesday to fight extradition to Sweden for questioning in connection with the alleged sexual assaults, which he denies.
But to bring Assange to trial on American soil could be increasingly messy. Not only would the United States need to come up with creative charges that may be difficult to prove, it would also have to launch a laborious extradition request with Sweden, a country known for protecting asylum seekers.
In addition, if British authorities grant the Swedish request, Assange would be flown to a country that shares a significantly stricter extradition treaty with the United States. Swedish authorities said Tuesday that they would seriously weigh any request but noted that their treaty with the United States does not cover crimes that are political or military in nature.
“If and when a U.S. request comes, it must be built with some sort of evidence and would be complicated if the same act is not punishable under Swedish law,” said Nils Rekke, head of the legal department at the Swedish prosecutor’s office in Stockholm. It would also depend, he said, on whether any crime “is considered political or military, which are omitted” from the extradition treaty.
Assange has argued that the allegations against him are politically motivated.
U.S. officials have been investigating whether Assange, as head of WikiLeaks, can be charged for disseminating sensitive documents, including detailed accounts of the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq and embarrassing personal opinions of world leaders held by U.S. diplomats.
Given the broader extradition treaty Washington enjoys with London, analysts say that going after Assange while he is still on British soil would prove the surer path. Nevertheless, his arrest may not affect the pace of the investigation in the United States, according to U.S. officials and experts on the laws of extradition…..Share on Facebook
From “eats shoots ‘n leaves”:
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Firebombs and the sounds of gunshots rocked the center of Athens Monday night as a protest marking the death of a young student at police hands turned violent.
More demonstrations are planned for Wednesday, when a nationwide general strike is scheduled to begin in response to the drastic austerity cuts mandated in the bailout plan approve by Greece’s nominally socialist government.
In a case of things becoming due…..
It has been a rough weekend for the Wikileaks site Head man…
And his site…..
Julian Assange has turned himself in to British police and been denied bail on a charge by Swedish authorities that had sex with two females and failed to use a condom…both times…
In Sweden that is considered rape even if the sex started off consensual….
The Courts in the UK has denied Assange bail..and he remains detained….
The Wikileaks site itself which claims to have 250,000 US State Department files has only released fewer than 2,000 itself…..
The site has been up and down despite being run offer several hosted servers….
The newspapers in several countries that received the Wikileaks initial dump of information have published only small amounts of files they have received…..
The US Government knows what they have in their possession…..
And in another blow to the site’s pocket book…..
VISA has suspended its service to the site….
Early yesterday there was a story about Wikileaks threatening to ‘go nuclear’ if Assange was arrested and the site silenced…
The implication was that Wikileaks has some sort information that would supremely embarrass the US….
Assange IS detained at this moment….
(Stefan Rousseau/Press Association, via Associated Press)
[The WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange was driven into Westminster Magistrates Court in London on Tuesday.]
Mr. Assange was arrested by officers from Scotland Yard’s extradition unit when he went to a central London police station by prior agreement with the authorities, the police said.
He arrived at the court near the Houses of Parliament on the banks of the River Thames, using a rear entrance to the building to skirt a scrum of television cameras, satellite vans and reporters from Britain, the United States, China, Russia, Japan and many European countries.
Mr. Assange was asked whether he understood that he could consent to be extradited to Sweden. Mr. Assange replied that he did not consent.
In a statement earlier on Tuesday, the police said: “Officers from the Metropolitan Police extradition unit have this morning arrested Julian Assange on behalf of the Swedish authorities on suspicion of rape.”
Mr. Assange has denied the charges of sexual misconduct said to have been committed while he was in Sweden in August. It was not immediately clear if Mr. Assange would resist extradition to Sweden for questioning by prosecutors there.
Previously, his British lawyer, Mark Stephens, had suggested that Mr. Assange might resist on the grounds that Swedish authorities could interview him by video-link from Stockholm or at their embassy in London and that the extradition request itself is politically motivated.
“It’s about time we got to the end of the day and we got some truth, justice and rule of law,” Mr. Stephens told reporters on Tuesday. “Julian Assange has been the one in hot pursuit to vindicate himself to clear his good name.”
The British police statement said that Mr. Assange was “accused by the Swedish authorities of one count of unlawful coercion, two counts of sexual molestation and one count of rape, all alleged to have been committed in August 2010.”
The arrest was made under a European arrest warrant “by appointment at a London police station at 09:30 today,” the statement said.
The charges involve sexual encounters that two women say began as consensual but became nonconsensual after Mr. Assange was no longer using a condom. Mr. Assange has denied any wrongdoing and suggested that the charges were trumped up in retaliation for his WikiLeaks work, though there is no public evidence to suggest a connection.
While widely anticipated, the arrest opened an array of new questions about Mr. Assange’s future, even as the Justice Department in Washington said it was conducting what Attorney General Eric H. Holder Jr. called “a very serious, active, ongoing investigation that is criminal in nature” into the WikiLeaks matter.
Since late November, WikiLeaks has been publishing documents from a trove of over 250,000 diplomatic cables. Mr. Assange has threatened to release many more if legal action is taken against him or his organization.
“Over 100,000 people” were given the entire archive of 251,287 cables in encrypted form, Mr. Assange said on Friday in a question-and-answer session on the Web site of the British newspaper The Guardian.
“If something happens to us, the key parts will be released automatically,” Mr. Assange said…..Share on Facebook
In a situation that has affected other New Jersey cities …….
Newark , New Jersey has laid off 197 police officers to try to save $10 million ……
The Unions had refused to make concessions….
But the lay-offs have forced the cities residents to begin worrying about crime around them…
[Police officers entering the 5th Precinct station house in Newark on Wednesday, when one officer, Kelvin Barnett, turned in his gun and badge.]
A day after Mayor Cory A. Bookerannounced that the city was laying off roughly 13 percent of its police force, residents battered by decades of runaway crime and stampeding blight raised the specter of the bad old days.
For some that went back as far as the 1970s, when residents abandoned Newark in droves. That was before Mr. Booker, who was elected in 2006, promised to focus on bringing the city’s crime rate down, an effort he pursued with early success: the murder rate fell for two years in a row, and one calendar month last spring there was not a single killing, something that had not happened since the 1960s.
But there has been a rise in crime rates this year, and in the neighborhoods surrounding the grocery store where Mr. Tabera stocked shelves on Wednesday afternoon, the murder rate has nearly doubled since last year.
On Wednesday, as officers continued to turn in their badges and guns at police stations and the Guardian Angels offered to help patrol the streets, citizens, police officers and politicians wrestled with the consequences of a depleted police force.
Cities across New Jersey have resorted to similar layoffs, their hands forced by falling tax collections, cuts in state aid and rising expenses. On Tuesday, the State Civil Service Commissionapproved Camden’s plan to lay off 383 of the city’s 1,100 employees, the deepest cuts in any major municipality. One-third of the Fire Department jobs would be eliminated, along with about half of the police force, which had been spared in previous cuts. All nonuniform city employees are already on unpaid furlough one day a week…..More….
While the countries economy may be creeping back…
The sad fact remains that cities and state around the country are still experiencing budget shortfalls….Share on Facebook