State of Florida Sues Homeland Security Over Access To Citizen Database
Reported Monday, June 11th, 2012
The State of Florida sued the U.S. Department of Homeland security over access to a database to verify the citizenship of residents as the state seeks to purge non-citizens and dead people from its voter rolls, a spokesman for Florida Secretary of State Ken Detzner said.
Florida claims DHS has refused to give it access despite repeated requests.
After the state filed suit, Assistant U.S. Attorney General Thomas E. Perez slammed Gov. Rick Scott's move in a terse five-page letter.
Calling the state's program "faulty," Perez said the purge comes too close to elections and will endanger the right of thousands of lawful citizens to cast ballots, The Miami Herald reports.
Perez faulted Florida for ignoring warnings by the Justice Department to stop the voter purge. And he threatened a suit as well against the state.“I have authorized the initiation of an enforcement action against Florida in federal court," he wrote.
“The significant problems you are encountering in administering this new program are of your own creation,” Perez wrote.
“Your claim that the Department of Justice and Department of Homeland Security have worked in concert to deny Florida access to the SAVE Program is simply wrong,” Perez added. “Please immediately cease this unlawful conduct.”
"We have a right to this database,” Florida Gov. Scott said on Fox’s Your World Cavuto show, according to the Miami Herald. “It's supposed to be used for voting registration. I look forward to them giving us the database but, again, we don't' have a choice but to sue them this afternoon.”
Florida’s lawsuit is part of Scott and the state's effort to remove illegals and dead people from voter rolls. About 87 non-citizens have been found on the voter rolls so far, at least 47 of whom may have unlawfully cast ballots, according to the Herald.
Florida’s elections division started comparing a motor vehicles database against some citizenship information, acknowledging that that information can be out of date.
Florida initially believed some 180,000 people might be non-citizens. So far more than 500 people have been contacted on the list and most have been lawful citizens.
The Department of Justice ordered the state to drop the purge two weeks ago saying it likely violated voting laws, particularly the National Voter Registration Act, which bans voter purges within 90 days of a federal election.
On Friday, the American Civil Liberties Union sued the State of Florida in Federal Court to stop the purge saying it unfairly targeted minorities.
But wait, how many dead people are registered to vote in Florida?
Well, how about 53,000 dead people! Friends, that a whole hell of a lot dead folks!
That's right, 53,000! On May 17th, 2012, it was reported that as many as 53,000 dead people may be registered to vote in Florida.
When I told my wife about this, her first reaction was "That's crazy! Why can't they just remove their names? Those names aren't doing anyone any good unless you're cheating the system!"
When I told her that Florida Democrats don't want them removed, she just shook her head in disbelief. And yes, I'm sure that most people are shaking their heads because this is so hard to believe.
Why can't election just remove names who are null and void? Well, that's the problem.
State officials are reportedly pushing local election supervisors to remove the dead voters as the critical 2012 elections near - but friends, Democrats simply don't believe that that should be done.
They are counting on those votes. Yes, as weird as it sounds, Democrats are counting on the votes of dead people to get their candidates elected - which of course includes re-electing President Obama.
Empowered by an election law passed by the Republican controlled Legislature last year, officials also compared the rolls to federal Social Security files and reportedly identified more than 53,000 dead people still registered to vote, which officials also want deleted from voter rolls.
Democrat supervisors reportedly fired back at state officials asking how certain the state was about the thousands of names on the preliminary ineligible-voters list.
Florida Democrats are pushing to keep those 53,000 dead people on the voter rolls. I can't help but laugh at their argument not to take them off.
And no, no one's questioning the citizenship of dead people - no matter how the Democrats want to paint it.
For the Republican controlled Legislature, it is all about trying to eliminate voter fraud. For the Democrats, it is all about keeping their Democrat voters - no matter if they are dead!
As I see it, if the Democrats really need to keep 53,000 dead people on the voter rolls to keep Obama in office - they are in a real trouble - they have lost any sort of sense of right and wrong.
To regain any sense of integrity, they really need to CHANGE their way of doing business and be honest.
Firearm-friendly towns in Idaho lure gun makers
Yes, towns in Idaho are trying to lure gun manufacturers. Their goal is to get people working again.
“It’s gonna create some jobs,” says David Brown, mayor of Potlatch, Idaho. “We can stay here, our kids can stay here and live and work.”
Potlatch, in western Idaho, for generations was a mill town. In 1906, it boasted the world’s largest pine saw mill. Its lumber built cities all over the United States. But in 1981, with its mill obsolete, Potlatch Lumber Inc. closed the mill and, with it, the town’s identity.
PNW Arms, a high-tech ammunition company based in Seattle, was recently looking for a new home. Tired of the long drives to the shooting range to test their products, and of course the laundry list of government regulations on weapons makers from a anti-gun state, PNW Arms settled on Potlatch.
“We have a welcoming environment,” says William Lyon, vice president of sales and marketing at PNW Arms. “We’re able to bring on staff that is familiar with our kind of work, and our supply chain is a lot closer.”
About 58 companies that make either guns or ammunition are currently based in Idaho, and government officials throughout the state are targeting more.
The Commerce Department calls it "Rec-Tech". The state legislature is gun-friendly, passing a law that shields weapons makers from liability when their products are involved in tragedies. The goal is to poach gun makers from states where the industry is heavily regulated - or heavily hated.
Potlatch is just getting started. B.J. Swanson, Latah County’s economic development director, has had inquiries from six weapons makers in the past few weeks. She and other officials envision an industrial park on the site of the old mill. Artist drawings show the manufacturing plants surrounded by stores and restaurants catering to gun enthusiasts.
“Big, yes,” says Swanson. “To start off with, maybe small. Maybe a couple companies with 10 employees would be a great start, and we could expand from there.”
Mayor Brown says gun crime is not a concern. Firearms are already a way of life in Potlatch. “Every pickup in town, you’ll see a gun in the rack,” says Brown. He only sees opportunity.
“The guns are gonna be built someplace, why not here?” says Brown. “It’s controlled; we’re not having a lot of killings around here.”
Thanks to places like Idaho, America will prosper!
The British Army is being forced to rely on Foreigners and Contractors?
Yes, that's what's happening in Great Britain these days!
Defense cuts will force the British Army to rely on foreign forces and private contractors for support and supply operations, according to Philip Hammond.
Philip Hammond is the current Secretary of State for Defence in the Coalition government led by David Cameron, having succeeded Liam Fox on 14 October 2011. He previously served as Secretary of State for Transport from 13 May 2010, when he was appointed as a Privy Counsellor. He is the Member of Parliament (MP) for Runnymede and Weybridge.
Hammond's remarks will add to Scottish fears for the future of infantry battalions such as the Argyll and Sutherland Highlanders (5 Scots) and the Scots Dragoon Guards
The Defence Secretary will say that reforms in the Army structure will focus the shrinking force’s resources on its combat units.
The British Army’s "combat service support" operations including logistics will increasingly be provided by other organisations. Other organizations?
Reforms will also mean that regular Army units will always deploy to the front line with troops from an enhanced Territorial Army.
The British Army is being cut from 102,000 soldiers to 82,000 - and as well as shedding personnel, the British Army is also restructuring. That means that "some units inevitably will be lost or will merge," according to Hammond.
The regimental restructuring plan has raised fears for long-standing infantry units like the Black Watch
In a speech to the RUSI Land Warfare Conference, the annual forum for debating the future of the Army, Philip Hammond will ensure folks that the restructuring operation will retain the basic regimental structure of the Army.
The changes will "maintain the ethos, traditions and connections that are part of what makes the British Army so effective – particularly, a regimental system and regionally-focused recruiting."
Philip Hammond insists that ministers "value the history and the heritage because they deliver tangible military benefits in the modern British Army."
However, he warns that a smaller British Army means making "difficult decisions" - "difficult decisions" that mean the Army remains "capable and agile" in the years to come.
A significant part of the reform will be to focus resources on the "teeth" of the Army, the units that are trained and equipped for combat. The cost of that focus will be reductions in "tail" units providing supply, logistics and transport capabilities.
Those capabilities, Hammond suggests, will be increasingly provided by private contractors and Britain’s international allies.
The British Army, according to Hammond, must be "thinking innovatively" about how combat service support is provided. Using more systematically the skills available in the Reserve and from our contractors. Working closely with partners to operate logistics more rationally through Alliance structures. Looking to others to provide the tail, where Britain is concentrating on providing the teeth."
As the regular Army becomes smaller, British ministers want to make more use of the Territorial Army. To maintain the Army’s ability to carry out its existing military tasks, ministers have said that the capability of Territorial Army reservists will be increased so Generals can rely on 30,000 deployable reservists by 2015.
So what does the British Army think of all of this? Well, commanders in the regular British Army have serious doubts on that target, questioning the training and commitment of some reservists.
However, ministers insist it will be realized and Hammond will tell Army chiefs that the Territorial Army will become a "permanent" part of the Army's overall strength.
"The integrated Army concept means that light infantry battalions will be reinforced on deployment through a permanent partnership with reserve battalions," according Hammond.
So now my readers are asking why? Why would I put an article about the British Army in the American Cowboy Chronicles?
Well, it's because of the significances of what it means to America's long standing commitment to NATO and because Great Britain is our number one ally in the entire world.
Fact is, yes, we really do have a special relationship with Great Britain that obviously goes back to our beginning, but more so for the last 120 plus years as a military ally.
The idea that the British Army will scale back from 102,000 soldiers to 82,000 is one thing - but the bigger point is that they are going to attempt to privatize part of their Army.
As far back as you want to go, you will find out that Army's run, as Napoleon said, "on their stomaches". Sure the Army has a mission, but it's their supply chain and logistics that keep them going to make the mission a success.
Any hiccup in their supplies and logistics due to labor problems or otherwise by a private contractor could be a horrible thing to have happen. And don't think it hasn't in the past, because it has in America as recently as during World War II.
And yes, Union private contractors are the worse!
Even during World War II, the war itself couldn’t budge organized labor unions into concessions with their corporate counter parts - government contractor or not. Fact is that there were no public employee unions back then, the only unions were those dealing with private companies.
The AFL, CIO, United Auto Workers, and United Mine Workers viewed the war as an opportunity to build power - not to be part of the war effort.
As UAW boss Tom Di Lorenzo told the Washington Post back in 1943 in the midst of World War II, "Our policy is not to win the war at any cost."
Over the years, here in the states, I've seen all sorts of cuts to our military. Many years ago, I watched as Marines were removed from preforming the security duties at Alameda Naval base. They were replaced with civilian security personal.
Later we Marines were placed on standby waiting for the call to resume the security at the gates - all because base security personal and the base authority were having problems over pay and benefits.
The civilian security couldn't strike, so instead many came down with what was called the "blue flu". It was an illness that made many of them call in sick. Their ailment only lasted until the base agreed to their demands.
These days, here in the states, the Obama administration wants to make cuts to our military as well as to Veteran Services. He wants to cut many branches of needed equipment and services available to the troops, including combat protective measures and certain insurances.
The Obama administration has talked about having returning Veterans find their own health care, even though they may be returning with Service Connected Disabilities.
There is talk that America should do like the British are doing in that we should privatize our supplies and logistics to save money.
Philip Hammond said: "Of course I regret that it has been necessary to make redundancies to deliver our plans for reducing the size of the armed forces. We inherited a multi-billion pound black hole in the defence budget which had meant the previous government had not been able to afford to properly equip our troops with the kit they needed. We've now brought the defence budget back into balance for the first time in a generation. We will have smaller armed forces but we will ensure they will have the protection and equipment they need."
The British term their cuts "redundancies". If it is true that they are cutting redundant jobs, then I'm all for it.
For a long time, I've felt that our own military is filled with redundancies such as every branch of our armed services having Special Forces sorts of units - why does the Air Force and Navy have Special Forces units when the Army and the Marine Corps has their Special Forces units?
The Army actually trains the Air Force Special Forces unit called AFSOC and the Marine Corps trains the Navy's Special Forces unit called the SEALs. All while the Army has it's Rangers and the Marine Corps has its MARSOC.
That, my friends, is true redundancy!
As for saving money? Well, if the British are indeed cutting back of the redundancy of work in their supply and logistics - then it may save them some money.
But if the British Defence Secretary thinks that his government will save money in the long run by going with private contractors? I don't think private contractors can save the British money, just as I don't think they'd save us money if we tried something like that.
In fact, from what I know of government contractors - because I once worked for one - I don't see them trying to save taxpayers anything. In fact, it's been may experience that they do the opposite.
It would surprise me to find out the Great Britain's Philip Hammond didn't do some research on the history of why an Army or Navy does their own supplies and logistics. It would surprise me to find out that Philip Hammond doesn't understand that there are certain things that can't be trusted to civilian workers, or contractors, or private businessmen and women.
It would really surprise me to find out that he really thinks Great Britain is going to save money and manpower by turning over duties that should be accomplished by the Army - to civilian contractors?
Someone should explain to him the cost involved in government contract over-runs, then maybe he'd think twice about doing what he's doing.
Proposed Horse Slaughterhouse polarizes industry
On June 6th, 2012, this report came out of Albuquerque, New Mexico.
Emaciated horses barely clinging to life at a New Mexico auction house, the place is their last stop before a lengthy trip to a slaughterhouse south of the border, give credence to grim tales from around the Southwest.
People unable to afford the rising cost of hay are dumping their horses either by selling cheap or by the worse alternative of just turning them loose on the side of the road. This is causing a growing problem as tens of thousands of wild horses are now roaming free foraging for food wherever they can get it. And yes, that means stripping drought-plagued landscapes and draining stock tanks as well.
As horse rescue operations struggle to keep up with a growing number of neglected, abused and starving animals, a businessman in Roswell, New Mexico, has filed an application to open what would be the first horse slaughterhouse to operate in the United States in five years.
The proposal by Valley Meat Co. owner Rick De Los Santos has reignited emotional debates over what constitutes humane treatment of horses, and how best to control an exploding equine population.
The horse is regarded as the iconic animal of the American West. It played a key role in the settling of much of America.
The idea of horse slaughterhouse goes to the question: Are horses livestock or pets?
"It's probably the most polarizing issue the horse industry has had to face in a long time," said Ward Stutz, senior director of breed integrity at the American Quarter Horse Association in Amarillo, Texas, one of a number of livestock and horse groups that support a return to domestic slaughter.
"Let me just say it this way," he said. "We believe it is the owner's right to determine what is in the best interest of their horses. We recognize that there is a lot of abandonment and neglect, therefore we believe that horse slaughter should be available."
Many animal humane groups and public officials are outraged at the suggestion, including New Mexico Gov. Susana Martinez.
"A horse's companionship is a way of life for many people across New Mexico," Martinez said after the proposal became public earlier this year. "We rely on them for work and bond with them through their loyalty. I believe creating a horse slaughter industry in New Mexico is wrong, and I am strongly opposed."
Supporters of horse slaughter point to a June 2011 report from the federal Government Accountability Office that shows cases of horse abuse and abandonment on a steady rise since Congress effectively banned horse slaughter by cutting funding for USDA inspection programs in 2006.
But a bill passed last year authorized the USDA to resume horse slaughterhouse inspections, prompting the application from De Los Santos. His cattle slaughter business dropped off as area ranchers sold their herds because of drought.
"What we see here will actually break your heart," said Charles Graham, executive director of New Mexico Horse Rescue at Walkin' N Circles Ranch and a supporter of humane horse slaughter in the United States.
"The problem in New Mexico is there is a lot of land. People get a horse, the wife loses her job, they keep the new car, the big TV, the cable service, and a horse in the backyard starving," he said
In Colorado, the GAO report states, investigations for abuse and neglect increased more than 60 percent after horse slaughter was banned domestically, from 975 in 2005 to 1,588 in 2009. Although national data is lacking, the GAO report says California, Texas and Florida have also reported a rise in the number of abandoned horses since 2007.
The number of U.S. horses sent to other countries for slaughter has nearly tripled since domestic horse slaughter ceased. Last year, 68,429 horses were shipped to Mexico and 64,652 to Canada, according to USDA statistics compiled by the Equine Welfare Alliance, a nonprofit dedicated to ending horse slaughter. That compares to total exports of 37,884 in 2006.
In New Mexico, Randol Riley, a supervisor with the New Mexico Livestock Board, said he gets calls reporting suspected abuse every day. And he says abandonment is on the rise.
"Here lately it's gotten worse. They are dumping horses like crazy," he said, as he delivered three horses a private landowner found abandoned without food or water on his property. The new arrivals brought the population at Walkin' N Circles to 90 head, 30 above what the facilities and budget are meant to handle. The state's other eight licensed rescues are also above capacity, and have been for years.
The plight of some horses was captured recently on video posted on YouTube by the animal rights group Animal Angels. The video, which shows four horses unable to stand inside a pen at the Southwest Livestock Auction in Valencia, N.M., prompted a criminal probe by local and state officials of the sale yard, where many unwanted horse are bought and sold for slaughter in Mexico.
The Valencia County district attorney on Tuesday charged the auction's owner, Dennis Chavez, with 12 counts of misdemeanor and other animal cruelty charges related to the four horses, which had to be euthanized. Chavez did not immediately return calls from The Associated Press.
Debbie Coburn of Four Corners Equine Rescue in Farmington, N.M., says the case highlights the need to end horse slaughter, including in Mexico. Instead, she said, the horse industry needs to address the issue of population control.
"The slaughter pipeline is where the majority of abuse and neglect take place," said Coburn. "To use slaughter as a way to get away with abuse and neglect is how I see it ... that's what slaughter is, a way for people to throw their trash under the carpet."
Graham said opinions among horse lovers "are all over the board. "
"What really bothers me is the hypocrisy. As soon as they cross the border we turn a blind eye. And those horses die a horrible death," he said. "To say we can't regulate slaughter and make it humane ... we can. Everybody who opposes slaughter, tell me your solution to 130,000 unwanted horses every year."
Graham said rules should be implemented for slaughter to make certain the horses are killed humanely, meaning instantly, taken care of on their way to slaughter by being fed and watered, with injuries treated. Most important, he said, the highly intelligent animals shouldn't see other animals being killed or placed in a position to smell blood.
Indeed, on a recent visit to the rescue operation east of Albuquerque, it was clear how in tune the horses are to other horses. As state livestock inspector Riley drove in with the three new arrivals, each of the some two dozen horses in nearby corrals stood completely focused on the trailer even before it passed through the gates.
For those who think horses are in the same league with livestock, I almost feel sorry for their complete lack of knowledge and understanding of horses.
Shamefully, it is their stupidity that will eventually lead to horse slaughterhouse operation where there should not be one.
Texas Dad Beats Daughter's Molester To Death Accidentally
A Texas father has not been arrested and is unlikely to face charges after he beat a man to death. The pedophile was trying to molest his 4-year-old daughter at their rural ranch.
The father told law enforcement that he caught the man molesting his daughter and tried to physically stop him.
Lavaca County Sheriff Micah Harmon said the father, whose name has not been released, said no evidence so far has led investigators to doubt his story.
"There doesn't appear to be any reason other than what he told us," Harmon said.
Harmon described the man as "very remorseful" after the Saturday killing.
"I don't think it was his intent for the man to die," Harmon told the Victoria Advocate. The man's grandfather also said his son was "sorry" and the killing was an "accident."
Harmon said the victim was a 47-year-old man from Gonazles with no apparent prior criminal history. His name continued to be withheld Monday because authorities still hadn't tracked down any of his family.
"We are still having trouble locating the deceased's next of kin," the sheriff said. "The chief deputy has been in Gonzales running down some leads, but his family may end up being from out of the country."
The victim was an "acquaintance" of the father who had come to help care for some horses, Harmon said. He did not know how long the two men may have known each other. The girl was taken to a hospital to be examined and has since been released, Harmon said.
The incident took place through a metal gate, down a rut-filled - almost gully-filled drive in a pasture behind a barn where the father was tending to horses, Harmon said.
Across the county road from where the beating took place, a neighbor said the family who owns the property are "good people."
"They have horses and chickens over there and come out every day to feed and water them," said the neighbor. "They are good people. Good, hard-working people."
The father called police late Saturday afternoon and told them he attacked a man caught trying to sexually assault his daughter, Harmon said. The alleged attack happened near a barn where some horses were being kept.
"In the course of trying to get her away from him, and protect her, he struck the subject several times in the head and the subject died," Harmon said.
Harmon said a grand jury will decide what, if any, charges the father will face. So all in all, no charges have been filed in the case and neither the father nor the 47-year-old man who died has been identified by law enforcement.
District Attorney Heather McMinn said that once the investigation is complete and turned over to her office, she will present it to a grand jury.
The victim's body was sent to the Travis County medical examiner for an autopsy.
The ranch near Shiner is about 130 miles east of Houston. Killings are rare in rural Lavaca County, Harmon said his office has only investigated six in his eight years as sheriff.
This is the sort of event is something that no father ever wants to have happen. I can only hope that there isn't a parent out there who wouldn't do the same thing is they found someone trying to molest their child.
I don't have a second's worth of pity for the child-molester who died.
He got what he deserved. The good part about this - he will not be doing such a horrible act to any other child again.
Now I'm very certain that some will probably write me, and yes they will tell me that I'm not living up to the Cowboy Code or that I'm not a very good Christian because I like the idea that a man gets beaten to death while trying to molest a child.
Sorry folks, but as I said before, being a Cowboy and living to the Cowboy Code don't make folks naive or stupid either. And as for me being a good Christian, well let's just say that I'm definitely not your turn the other other cheek sort of Christian. No, I'm definitely not that sort of Christian at all!
And yes, I'm pretty sure a few homosexuals will write me to say that it's people like me that are keeping gay men from getting their way of lowering the age of consent for boys - as the gay lobby LAMDA is working hard to do with the help of liberal Democrats in the carious states.
My answer to them is that all pedophiles, straight or gay, should be dealt with severely. The reason is simple. They attack the innocent; They strike without hesitation or conscience; They ruin a child's life every time they act out their selfish desires.
Because of this, their lives should be completely ruined in return violently through castration or capital punishment.
Short prison terms and so-called rehabilitation programs have been shown to be poor substitutes for real solutions simply because they don't work to stop child molesters from acting again and again. Let's face the facts, pedophiles are the highest repeat criminal offenders.
Because of that, I really believe that castration or capital punishment should be considered when looking at penalties for child molesters - especially if they are repeat offenders.
In the case of the father in Texas who caught the man molesting his daughter and tried to physically stop him - and accidentally killed him.
That dad should be given a medal!
Story by Tom Correa