Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Fooled by the media depicting Occupy LA as a bunch of crack heads and drunks? Here is reality folks!

The Derelict

Official refuses Tennessee governor’s orders to break up ‘Occupy Nashville’

Tennessee Gov. Bill Haslam speaks to a crowd.
Just one week after New York Governor Andrew Cuomo (D) saw his order to push an “Occupy” protest out of a public park at night rebuked by a local official, Tennessee’s governor is experiencing a similar problem.
Gov. Bill Haslam (R) has twice given the order to crackdown on protesters at “Occupy Nashville,” only to see it denied by judicial commissioner Tom Nelson. In Tennessee, a judicial commissioner has the authority to determine whether crimes have been committed.
“The magistrate’s position is sort of a safety valve to prevent overzealous officers from putting people in jail for no reason,” Nashville attorney Jim Todd said to the Associated Press.

Nelson ordered the release of 29 protesters arrested last Thursday because “the state had not given the protesters adequate notice that it was changing the rules.”
(Photo credit: Princess Theater )

Jobless US vets say military experience not valued

* Vet jobless rate 2.6 pct higher than general population
* As wars wind down, lawmakers and groups focus on issue
By Roy Strom
NAPERVILLE, Ill, Oct 29 (Reuters) - When Matthew Burrell left the U.S. Army after eight years of service, he landed a job as a public relations contractor in Iraq. With a salary of $170,000, he figured military experience had finally paid off.
But five months after returning home to Chicago, 33-year-old Burrell is unemployed and his search for a job in the private sector has left him disheartened.
Despite having six years of experience as a public relations officer in the Army, he said he is treated as though he had just graduated from college.
"I can tell you for a fact that definitely in my field in public relations and marketing, private-sector companies do not value (military experience)," Burrell said.
Burrell, along with many of what the Department of Labor says are 235,000 unemployed veterans from the Iraq and Afghanistan wars, has run into a vexing problem.
Many U.S. companies, and sometimes veterans themselves, do not know how to translate military experience into civilian skills. There is a disconnect between companies demanding a college degree and veterans giving confusing descriptions of their military experience to civilian employers.
That disconnect has contributed to veterans having an unemployment rate 2.6 percent higher than the general population, according to September's Bureau of Labor Statistics unemployment report.
As U.S. involvement in Iraq and Afghanistan winds down, lawmakers and organizations are starting to address the issue.
The Obama administration this week announced steps that include encouraging community health centers to hire 8,000 veterans over the next three years, and improving training opportunities for military medics to become physician assistants.
The U.S. Chamber of Commerce said it hopes to get 15,000 veterans hired through 100 job fairs around the country for veterans this year. One of those job fairs was held recently in Naperville, a Chicago suburb, giving 86 companies the chance to meet more than 600 veterans.
One problem is that veterans need to explain more clearly to companies the value of their experience, said Kevin Schmiegel, vice president of veterans' employment programs at the Chamber of Commerce.
Hiring managers who have not served in the military are often bewildered by the jargon used by soldiers and weapons specialists, said Becky Brillon, who heads a program at the Community Career Center in Naperville.
A military job title might be listed like this: "25 Romeo visual and media equipment operator and maintainer."
"If somebody was artillery, or a sharpshooter or a sniper, you have to tone that down in the civilian world. It's more about being detail-oriented, precise and focused," she said.
On the flip side, private employers should give more credit to the experience and skills veterans acquire in the military, Schmiegel said.
Some military jobs, like a mechanic or technician, are fairly easily adapted to the private sector. But military credentials and certificates for other forms of training do not seem to carry much weight.
Rick Combs, a 27-year-old who retired as a sergeant in the Army, says he was given management training in the military. So far that training has not translated into a comparable private-sector job.
"You can come in, and slap something down that says, 'Here, the military says I can lead people. Give me a department and I will make it dance for you,'" Combs said. "I haven't had the opportunity on the civilian side yet."

Russia Ready to Offer Europe $10 Billion in Aid Through IMF

(Updates with Dvorkovich comments starting in second paragraph.)
Oct. 31 (Bloomberg) -- Russia is prepared to help Europe cope with its debt crisis by making as much as $10 billion available through the International Monetary Fund and hasn’t ruled out offering bilateral help to European Union nations.
“It’s really important to us that Europe remains stable,” Arkady Dvorkovich, the Kremlin’s top economic aide, told reporters in Moscow today. “If Europe becomes unstable, then the Russian economy will enter a period of instability.”
President Dmitry Medvedev will join other Group of 20 leaders in Cannes, France, this week for talks on easing a sovereign-debt crisis consuming Greece and threatening Spain and Italy. Russia, holder of the world’s third-largest international reserves, will demand that all countries start reducing their budget deficits, Dvorkovich said.
“We’re going to take an inflexible stance on this,” he said. “Our BRICS partners have a similar position. We’ll coordinate on this.”
The group of emerging economies, comprising Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa, said at a summit in Washington last month that they may support global financial stability through the IMF and other international organizations. The countries have linked the aid to demands for greater representation at the the Washington-based lender as their importance to the global economy grows.
Cyprus Loan
The government of Cyprus, the euro area’s third-smallest economy, said Oct. 5 it was ready to sign a deal for a 2.5 billion-euro ($3.5 billion) loan from Russia, helping the east Mediterranean island control its borrowing costs. Russia is continuing talks with Cyprus on providing a loan, Deputy Finance Minister Sergei Storchak said in an interview last month.
French President Nicholas Sarkozy and his Chinese counterpart, Hu Jintao, agreed last week to “cooperate closely” on ensuring global financial stability as Europe seeks assistance from China and other cash-rich developing countries. Chinese Vice Finance Minister Zhu Guangyao said his government, holder of the world’s largest reserves stockpile, was seeking more information on how Europe’s bailout fund will be used.
“Above all, the risks are from the fact that so far neither Europe nor the U.S. has managed to fully fix their fiscal health,” Dvorkovich said. “Stabilization is possible, and there’s enough money. Now everything depends on whether the national governments meet their obligations.”
--Editors: Paul Abelsky, Alan Crosby
To contact the reporters on this story: Lyubov Pronina in Moscow at lpronina@bloomberg.net; Scott Rose in Moscow at rrose10@bloomberg.net
To contact the editor responsible for this story: Balazs Penz at bpenz@bloomberg.net

Class Claims AT&T Rigs Bills for iPhones

     SAN FRANCISCO (CN) - AT&T Mobility faces another federal class action involving its iPhone and iPad services. This one claims that "AT&T's bills systematically overstate the amount of data used on each data transaction involving an iPhone or iPad account," and bills customers for data transactions even if they disable their phones and leave them untouched - as the plaintiff's experts did.
     The class says AT&T's billing system "is like a rigged gas tank that charges pump that charges for a full gallon when it pumps only nine-tenths of a gallon into your car's tank."
     AT&T has faced a welter of class actions since rolling out its iPhone service with Apple, which is not named as a party to this complaint. Previous class actions have claimed AT&T charged for downloads its customers never made, reneged on its billing plans for iPhones, charged for services it could not or did not deliver, and promised but failed that the phones could send text messages and photos.
     In the new complaint, named plaintiff Patrick Hendricks claims that AT&T's overbilling "was discovered by an independent consulting firm retained by plaintiff's counsel, which conducted a two-month study of AT&T's billion practices for data usage, and found that AT&T systematically overstate web server traffic by 7 percent to 14 percent, and in some instances by over 300 percent. So, for example, if an iPhone user downloads a 50 KB website, AT&T's bill would typically overstated the traffic as 53.5 KB (a 7 percent overcharge) to as high as 150 KB (a 300 percent overcharge)." (Parentheses in complaint.)
     But wait, Hendrick's claim continues: "It gets worse. Not only does AT&T systematically overbill for every data transaction, it also bills for phantom data traffic when there is no actual data usage initiated by the customer. This was discovered by the same independent consulting firm, which purchased an iPhone from an AT&T store, immediately disabled all push notifications and location services, confirmed that no email account was configured on the phone, closed all applications, and let the phone sit untouched for 10 days. During this 10-day period, AT&T billed the test account for 35 data transactions totaling 2,292 KB of usage. This is like the rigged gas pump charging you when you never even pulled your car into the station."
     The class claims that though AT&T's overcharges "have a modest effect on an individual customer's bill, they have a huge effect on AT&T's bottom line. AT&T has 92,8 million customers. In the fourth quarter of 2010, AT&T reported its wireless data revenues increased $1.1 billion, or 27.4 percent, from the year-earlier quarter, to $4.9 billion. A significant portion of those data revenues were inflated by AT&T's rigged billing system for data transactions."
     Hendricks seeks restitution and class damages for money had and received, breach of contract, unjust enrichment, unfair and fraudulent business practices, unfair competition, and violations of the federal Communications Act. He is represented by L. Timothy Fisher with Bursor & Fisher of Walnut Creek.

Bill Black @ #occupywallstreet on Arresting Banksters

Police use bulldozers to break up Occupy Richmond

Bulldozers clear Occupy Richmond
Virginia State Police brought in bulldozers at about 1 a.m. Monday morning to clear out an encampment of Occupy Richmond protesters.
At least 15 protesters who choose not to leave Kanawha Plaza after a 45 minute warning were arrested, according to Richmond Times-Dispatch.
Demonstrators had been occupying the plaza since Oct. 15. Democratic Mayor Dwight C. Jones visited the site Thursday to warn protesters they were breaking a city ordinance that forbids camping on public property.

“We applied for permits from city council but, you know, they didn’t accept or decline us getting a permit,” one activist explained to WTVR. “At least them declining it would give us an idea what was to come, but we didn’t get anything. So we started occupying with high hopes and unfortunately this is what it came down to.”
Protesters have vowed to continue their occupation of Richmond even if they can’t do it at Kanawha Plaza.
Watch this video from WTVR, broadcast Oct. 31, 2011.

Watch this video on iPhone/iPad

Couple jailed, lose custody of daughter, over stolen sandwiches

HONOLULU (Reuters) - A pregnant woman and her husband were arrested for allegedly stealing two sandwiches at a supermarket in Honolulu, resulting in their 3-year-old daughter being put into state care for 18 hours, officials said on Saturday.
The supermarket that called the police was a Safeway in Makiki, a neighborhood in Honolulu. A statement from a company spokesman said Safeway was checking on the incident.
"From our preliminary investigation, it appears we may not have handled this matter in the best possible way. We are taking this situation seriously, and giving it our full attention," Safeway said in a statement on Saturday.
Famished mother Nicole Leczcyzynski, 30-weeks pregnant, was feeling faint and noshed on a chicken salad sandwich while shopping at the store on Wednesday, Leczcyzynski said in an interview with local television station KHON.
She paid for roughly $50 dollars worth of groceries but forgot about the two sandwiches, valued at $5 each, according to Safeway.
The family was stopped by security staff while leaving the store. Leczcyzynski offered to pay for the sandwiches, she said, but the security guard called the police, the couple were arrested, and their daughter was taken into custody by Child Protective Services, a state welfare group.
"We walked a long way to the grocery store and I was feeling faint, dizzy, like I needed to eat something so we decided to pick up some sandwiches and eat them while we were shopping," she told the local station.
Both Leczcyzynski, and her husband, Marcin, were charged with theft, Honolulu police said. Bail was set at $50 apiece.
(Reporting by Jorene Barut in Honolulu; Additional reporting by Mary Wisniewski in Chicago; Writing by Eric Johnson in Chicago; Editing by Jerry Norton)

OCCUPY WALL ST - The Empire Strikes Back With Weekend Raids + Arrests

Denninger thinks protesters should sue...

OCCUPY WALL ST - The Empire Strikes Back With Weekend Raids + Arrests

Denninger thinks protesters should sue...

Second Energy Department-backed company goes bankrupt

A Massachusetts company that received a $43 million Energy Department loan guarantee last year filed for bankruptcy Sunday, a step certain to fuel criticism of federal green energy financing in the wake of the solar company Solyndra’s collapse.

Beacon Power Corp., which develops energy storage systems, filed for bankruptcy protection in the U.S. Bankruptcy Court in Delaware.

Beacon Power had received federal loan guarantee to help build an energy storage plant in Stephentown, New York that began operating in January. The Treasury Department’s Federal Financing Bank provided the loan.

Beacon sought bankruptcy protection two days after the White House ordered an independent 60-day evaluation of the Energy Department's loan programs aimed at ensuring effective management and monitoring.

The review, conducted by a former Treasury Department official, will include examination of how Beacon’s project is performing going forward, and whether there are additional steps that can be taken to protect taxpayers, according to the Obama administration.The Beacon bankruptcy comes roughly two months after the California solar panel maker Solyndra, which had received a $535 million Energy Department (DOE) loan guarantee in 2009, went belly up and laid off 1,100 workers.

Solyndra’s collapse unleashed a torrent of GOP-led attacks on the Energy Department’s loan guarantee program.


Occupy Veterans Movement Growing Across U.S.

PHOTO: A photograph sits on a memorial for Scott Olsen.
A photograph sits on a memorial for Scott Olsen, an Iraq veteran who was severely injured during a standoff between Occupy Oakland and Oakland police, near the Occupy Oakland encampment, Oct. 27, 2011. (Getty Images)

Since Occupy Wall Street protests have broken out in cities across the U.S. and abroad, support has come from what might seem like an unlikely corner: war veterans.
But two of the highest-profile protesters -- each from opposite ends of the country -- had served in wars. Last week, the world watched as bleeding, dazed 24-year-old Marine Scott Olsen was carried away by fellow protesters after he was struck in the head by an object apparently fired by an Oakland police officer. And before that, Marine Sgt. Shamar Thomas was captured on video confronting a group of New York police officers he said had been too rough with protesters.
Both Thomas and Olsen have become rallying figures in the Occupy Wall Street movement -- not only among civilian protesters but among veterans whose participation in the protests has been growing, according to such veterans-turned-organizers as Paige Jenkins.
"For veterans especially, health care is paramount, yet is always on the table to be cut," Jenkins said in an interview with ABC News. "Vets in this movement don't want to fight anymore. We want to make peace and live peaceably. We shouldn't have to fight for our benefits, and if vets are fighting for their benefits then it can't be any better for nonvets.

"What do you think is going to happen in 2012 after everyone gets home from Iraq? No jobs, no benefits. This will not be a good scene," Jenkins continued. "I imagine the suicide rate will climb, and sadly, I think that some people in this country don't feel any responsibility for that."
Jenkins, who served from 1987 until 2002, first in the U.S. Navy and then in the California National Guard, said that some veterans were organizing to be "peacekeepers" and maintain "perimeter security."
"As vets, I think it is our job to protect our community through teachings of nonviolence and defensive measures like how to protect yourself from unprovoked police attacks," said Jenkins, who is currently studying military social work at the University of Southern California's Virtual Academic Center.
Another group that called itself Occupy Marines Corps recently posted on its Facebook page advice about how to protest in winter weather. According to a Tweet by @Kruggurl, the organization has offered protesters supplies for the winter.
"We are a collection of prior service Marines intent on protecting American citizens and their ability to exercise their First Amendment rights," a spokesperson for the group said.
"These riot squads deploy unlawful excessive force against Americans all service members swore to protect, and many veterans have sacrificed their lives in that honor. We at OMC will not stand idly by as these cowards continue to abuse the Constitution, hurting American citizens. We will use any nonviolent means to convince law enforcement agencies to understand that brutality will only strengthen our resolve," the spokesperson said, adding that the group acknowledged that not all Marines agreed with the group's position.
"As for Scott Olsen, we are outraged his life was nearly snuffed out by these cowards, and pray for his continued recovery and that of his family during this difficult time."
Olsen, who deployed twice to Iraq, is a member of the Veterans for Peace and Iraq Veterans Against the War. The Veterans for Peace issued a statement shortly after Olsen suffered his injuries.
"VFP members are involved with dozens of these local 'occupy movement' encampments, and we support them fully," it said.