Federal regulators have discovered that hundreds of millions of dollars in customer money have gone missing from MF Global in recent days, prompting an investigation into the company’s operations as it filed for bankruptcy on Monday, according to several people briefed on the matter.Worth noting there's one word is conspicuously missing from the story. See if you can guess.
The revelation of the missing money scuttled an 11th hour deal for MF Global to sell a major part of itself to a rival brokerage firm. MF Global, the powerhouse commodities brokerage run by Jon S. Corzine, had staked its survival on completing the deal.
Now, the investigation threatens to tarnish the reputation of Mr. Corzine, the former New Jersey Governor and Goldman Sachs chief who oversaw MF Global’s demise, making it the first American victim of Europe’s debt crisis.
What began as nearly $1 billion missing had dropped to less than $700 million by late Monday. It is unclear where the money went, and some money is expected to trickle in over the coming days as the firm sorts through the bankruptcy process, the people said.
Monday, October 31, 2011
In a sane world they would dress up as something they've never been beofre: Normal people. But since we're dealing with a pretty dim bunch, some of them played, um, Fox News reporters or something. No far left movement is free of Fox Derangement Syndrome.
If you think the media isn't sustaining this carnival, well, they had 22 people in their Halloween parade, outnumbered by cameras.
Via the link, here's their list of characters.
These people really haven't advanced much beyond fourth grade on the humor scale.
If you want to know what something called Zilch looks like, it's about what you'd expect.
Noticeably absent from this cast of characters are supporters of OWS.
Two different drunks I spoke with last week told me they’d been encouraged to “take it to Zuccotti” by officers who’d found them drinking in other parks, and members of the community affairs working group related several similar stories they’d heard while talking with intoxicated or aggressive new arrivals.Oh well. You claim to represent the 99% then deal with it. Aren't the homeless also part of the 99%?
The NYPD’s press office declined to comment on the record about any such policy, but it seems like a logical tactic from a Bloomberg administration that has done its best to make things difficult for the occupation — a way of using its openness against it.
“He’s got a right to express himself, you’ve got a right to express yourself,” I heard three cops repeat in recent days, using nearly identical language, when asked to intervene with troublemakers inside the park, including a clearly disturbed man screaming and singing wildly at 3 a.m. for the second straight night.
“The first time I’ve heard cops mention our First Amendment rights,” cracked one occupier after hearing a lieutenant read off of that apparent script.
“A lot of you people smell,” a waggish cop shot back later after an occupier asked if he might be able to help find more appropriate accommodations for a particularly pungent and out-of-sorts homeless man.
“The police are saying ‘it’s a free for all at Zuccotti so you can go there,’” said Daniel Zetah, a member of several working groups including community affairs. “Which makes our job harder and harder because the ratio is worse and worse.”
Occupy Portland volunteers expect a visit Monday afternoon from filmmaker Michael Moore.Protesters should try and dress the opposite of what they really are. In that case they'd dress up as human beings.
Volunteers also say demonstrators following a Halloween-inspired zombie theme will march from Lownsdown Square to a Bank of America to protest the bank’s coal interests.
Meanwhile, more strife among the human debris in Portland.
Hasan Cross, 32, who is homeless, said drugs and alcohol are rampant among the homeless and that those conditions made the encampment a difficult place to stay. "This is not the message we are trying to convey," he said of substance abuse among campers at the main encampment. As he spoke, Moilanen pointed out multiple large rats darting around the federal plaza in predawn darkness.
With an estimated net worth of $100 million, rapper 50 Cent is definitely among the one percent, but he’s not against the Occupy Wall Street protests that are sweeping the nation. Fiddy took to Twitter late Sunday night to give the demonstrators some advice and explain how he thinks his new energy drink can solve the problem.Sweeping the nation? Really? A couple of thousand layabout sleeping on the streets in a nation of 300 million people is a movement sweeping the nation?
Mr. Cent posted a trio of Tweets shortly before midnight. In his first pair of messages, he expressed support for nonviolent protests and asked the Occupy Wall Street demonstrators to try and get along with the police. (Ed. Note: We’re not even going to bother typing [sic] after each error, all spelling is Fiddy’s own)
“To everyone protesting right now. I want U to know I’m for peaceful protesting. Just try not to make the police feel like there the enemy. They will hurt U … You would be surprised how many of them would like to be apart of protesting with U. there hurting to,” Mr. Cent wrote.
Besides, I guess these greedy vendors hawking vegetables are part of the evil 1%.
The Occupy movement came to Los Angeles aiming for Wall Street titans, but farmers market vendors are the first to take a real hit.In other words, screw them. It's all about us!
Two weeks ago, about 40 vendors who sell on the City Hall lawn every Thursday were forced off the property after protesters refused to remove their city of tents.
The mini-businesses — produce farmers, popcorn poppers, flower sellers — were abruptly moved by city officials to a new and less visible location across Main Street. Since that relocation, profits have plummeted, vendors have pulled out and shoppers have become scarce.
"The cause is good," said Genaro Lopez, a vendor who initially helped protesters with free sodas and burritos. "But this is our bread and butter, and we've taken a huge hit."
Many vendors, who already struggle to make it through the slow winter months, have reported a 40% to 60% drop in sales since the move, said market manager Susan Hutchinson. So far, three have decided to quit showing up until the demonstrators are gone.
The irony is not lost on Occupy L.A. protesters.
"Here we are representing the 99%," said Martine Fennelly, an activist. "And the farmers are the first to suffer from the movement."
Still, Fennelly said, protesters are choosing to stay put, because "an occupation means an occupation, not a three-week camp-out."
Until then, Jorge Zaragosa plans to steer clear of the market. For six years, he had traveled 60 miles from Oxnard to sell his fruit and produce. The second week of the protest, he went home with only $180 and a truck full of strawberries, broccoli and other goods. That's when he decided to bow out.The poor bastard is trying to make a living, but instead will be driven into poverty by the schmucks.
"I have a lot of expenses," Zaragosa said. "I don't have time to go there and gamble."
Besieged broker MF Global is expected to file for bankruptcy today after a frantic effort over the weekend by CEO John Corzine to strike an out-of-bankruptcy appeared to come up came up short, The Post has learned.After that disaster he spent hundreds of millions to buy himself a Senate seat and then the governorship before being crushed by Chris Christie.
The embattled broker dealer run by the former New Jersey governor is expected to sell some of the company’s assets in a complicated transaction to rival Interactive Brokers Group, a move that must receive the blessing of a bankruptcy judge, according to people familiar the situation.
It is expected that MF Global’s holding company will file for bankruptcy while other units, including one that clears fixed-income trades, will open its doors for business this morning, sources added. Early this morning, MF shares were halted in trading, with news pending.
A number of terms were still being hammered out early this morning and elements of the deal could still change.
The bankruptcy and planned sale to a rival would end one of the most harrowing weekends on Wall Street since Lehman Brothers on Sept. 15, 2008 imploded on worries that it was choking on toxic mortgage debt.
Three years later, Corzine — a former Goldman Sachs CEO — was pounding the phones this past weekend in an attempt to secure a white knight to purchase all or parts of MF Global after concerns about the broker-dealer’s exposures to some $6.3 billion in European sovereign debt decimated its shares in a wild week off trader for the firm that saw it lose three-quarters of its equity value.
Precisely how much Interactive Brokers Group would be shelling out to purchase parts of MF Global is unclear.
According to a Wall Street Journal report early this morning, it could be as much as $1 billion.
Whatever the number neither shareholders of IBG nor creditors are expected to be happy.
For Corzine, 64, a bankruptcy would be another knock on his reputation after choosing to dial up European risk at MF Global when other larger firms had grown weary.
Corzine is not expected to stay on at MF Global — an embarrassing outcome for a Wall Street titan who led Goldman Sachs before being ousted in 1999.
Remember, Barack Obama has been considering his for his next Treasury Secretary.
Corzine had occasionally been touted in the media as a possible Treasury Secretary in an Obama administration, perhaps replacing current incumbent Timothy Geithner, and following in the footsteps of his former Goldman rival Henry Paulson.He's currently one of Obama's top fundraisers.
Update: Looks like Corzine will be getting a nice payday for destroying this company. Wall Street Occupiers were unavailable for comment.
DealBook reported that Corzine's severance package could allow him to walk away with around $12 million.
$12 million for joining a company and, in two years, flying it into a mountain.
Quick, someone go tell Occupy Wall Street.
Some 50 Occupy Wall Street protesters saw red yesterday -- giving an enthusiastic welcome to a genuine communist.Bring it on, douche.
Alex Callinicos, a professor of European Studies at Kings College in London, announced to his rapt audience, “I am a Marxist.’’
Asked if the upcoming revolution can be non-violent, he parroted the party line of the demonstrators, who call themselves the 99 percent of Americans lined up against the “1 percent’’ with power and money.
He said violence could be avoided only if the “1 percent accept the decisions of the 99 percent,’’ which he predicted would never happen.
While he was speaking about the revolution, most of the demonstrators in Zuccotti Park were making plans for a long, cold winter.Hmm, one of their own questioning the entitlement mentality of his comrades?
“It’s been dumping snow here in NYC ... high winds and 3 inches of slush on the ground ... [and] those occupying Liberty Plaza [Zuccotti’s former name] ... are in need of emergency supplies crucial for cold-weather survival,” organizers said on their Web site.
Their elaborate wish list included “insulated gloves, wool hats, scarves, long underwear/smart wool thermal socks, all-weather sub-thermal sleeping bags [and] all-weather tents.”
And sympathetic supporters were quick to deliver.
“I was feeling really bad for them yesterday,” said Beth Kelley, 47, an ex-Wall Street worker who brought fleece hats and scarves.
But not everyone felt sorry for the soggy masses.
Nick Hommen, 29, a volunteer from Salem, Ore., who was handling donations, said some demonstrators were taking advantage of people’s generosity.
“We can’t afford to keep buying new tents. It’s ridiculous the sense of entitlement people feel,” Hommen said.
Even Triumph the Insult Comic Dog from Conan O’Brien’s TV show, which was taping at the park, told protesters, “There are too many causes; you need to simplify,” while chiding them for demanding free subway rides for the jobless and “meditation subsidies.”
Sunday, October 30, 2011
After about an hour braving the storm in the tents, we made our way to a nearby McDonald’s on Broadway where we encountered about 60 protesters taking refuge from the cold. In the vestibule, a crowd smoked cigarettes.Wait a minute, didn't King Bloomberg outlaw smoking? How is it these lowlifes get to smoke in a McDonald's vestibule?
A McDonald’s employee struggled to keep the protesters out of an upstairs area of the restaurant that was closed. She declined to give her name or comment on record, but we asked if she was enjoying the increased business that came with the protests. She shook her head.A woman performing more work in one day than all these people combined the past six weeks and she's got to suffer these thugs.
“They’re harassing me, threatening me. … Other states are closing down, why can’t we?” she asked.
While the left shower sympathy and plaudits on these marauders, a woman working at a McDonald's, and every other decent working person around there, have to suffer.
A pair of men began to scuffle in the restaurant.Please, just go somewhere, back to whatever miserable lives you were already living.
“Why don’t you mind you’re [sic] own business?” one said.
Another man called out inviting people to another location.
“Please come to 60 Wall Street,” he shouted.
Using the call and response style of the “people’s microphone” that has become another signature of the Occupy Wall Street protest movement, another man repeated the invitation. We asked him what was happening at 60 Wall Street.
“It’s a warm place that’s bigger than this,” he said.
“Please go there,” said the woman from McDonald’s.
The city dodged any significant snowfall: the Berkshires saw six inches, while West Milford, New Jersey got 18, and the state's governor announced a state of emergency early in the evening. Governor Cuomo did the same for 13 counties in New York, with Orange seeing the most snow at 12 inches. "The weather is crazy," one Queens man told the Daily News. "It was 60 degrees four days ago. It really makes you question global warming." Yeah! After yesterday's storm we expect Al Gore to turn in his Nobel by Friday.Old and busted: Global warming. New hotness: Dynamic cooling!
Mayor Bloomberg is crossing state lines - and opening his wallet - in his latest salvo in his war to keep guns off city streets.It might be better if Bloomberg focused on rapist control in Zuccotti Park.
Bloomberg has donated $25,000 apiece to the campaigns of six Democratic candidates for the Virginia state Senate who share his strict beliefs on gun control, officials told the Daily News Friday.
The deep-pocketed mayor, who drew the ire of the Virginia attorney general when he ran gun stings there five years ago, will travel to Old Dominion to campaign for the candidates next week, the officials said.
One Virginia resident summed it up nicely.
"He's an arrogant bastard who shouldn't be meddling."
Wall Street protesters in Zuccotti Park battened down the hatches yesterday as the early October snow turned their tents into igloos, but the close quarters also made easy pickings for one predator.Way to fight the man, by not reporting rapes. I guess all this crime might hurt their image.
A sex fiend barged into a woman’s tent and sexually assaulted her at around 6 a.m., said protesters, who chased him from the park.
“Pervert! Pervert! Get the f--k out!” said vigilante Occupiers, who never bothered to call the cops.
“They were shining flashlights in his face and yelling at him to leave,” said a woman who called herself Leslie, but refused to give her real name.
She said that weeks earlier another woman was raped.
“We don’t tell anyone,” she said. “We handle it internally. I said too much already.”
Saturday, October 29, 2011
In the most violent Saturday in more than a month of Occupy Denver demonstrations and marches, Denver police fired mace and pepper balls at a crowd of protesters in Civic Center today and arrested 20 people.A Democrat congressman came in to try and control the mob and offer words of encouragement.
Two of the protesters were held for felony charges after police said an officer was knocked off his motorcycle and other officers were kicked, as they moved into the park to tear down illegal tents.
The first mid-afternoon confrontation had police and state troopers shoulder-to-shoulder pushing a group of marchers off the state Capitol steps, which is out-of-bounds to protesters without a permit. Some of the Occupy Denver sympathizers then raced to set up tents in Civic Center, where city officials have allowed ongoing food tables and sleeping bags but not sleeping structures.
Protesters there surged around about eight police officers. Other officers responding to calls for help fired the pepper bullets, which resemble paint balls. One protester filming the scene — one of hundreds of cameras documenting police activity — was knocked out of a tree in the melee.
Five people were arrested in the first conflict, before 3 p.m. Hundreds of officers and SWAT members converged on the park and Broadway was shut down for hours as police and protesters reached a tense stalemate.
About a dozen of the angriest marchers stood nose-to-nose with police and screamed profanity or anti-Wall Street slogans. Others tried to calm the situation, even while filming.
Just before 6 p.m., with ambulances waiting and police cruisers covering whole blocks around the park, officers donned gas masks and used megaphones to warn protesters the remaining tents were illegal. Wielding long batons, a few dozen officers pushed into the park and formed a circle around the tents.
During the mid-afternoon stalemate, U.S. Rep. Ed Perlmutter waded into the crowd alone but for a bullhorn, urging protesters to remain as peaceful as they had been during his previous visit. A few in the crowd drowned his words, shouting that it was the cops in assault gear who needed to tone it down, not them.We can only hope.
"Obviously you're making an impression," said Perlmutter, the Seventh District Democrat. "You've got to de-escalate this thing."
"We want jobs!" a man shouted back. "Democrats won't get elected anymore!"
Not even nature was prepared for this.We've got around ten inches of snow and those trees that haven't snapped are hanging very low to the ground.
A historic early season nor’easter clobbered New Jersey today, snapping forests worth of trees, leaving hundreds of thousands without power, causing dozens of traffic accidents and even breaking at least one snowfall record in the latest bout of the state’s recent run of wild weather.
But even with all the Garden State has been through in the past four months — record heat, a once-in-a-1,000-year rain event and an earthquake — not even the trees were primed for a major snowstorm in October.
“We went from a hurricane to earthquakes to a blizzard,” said Randy Blumenthal, 28, of Morristown. “It’s too early. I’m not ready for it yet.”
Gov. Chris Christie declared a state of emergency this evening and used the social networking site Twitter to warn state residents to stay home and keep them updated about the storm throughout the evening.
“This is more snow than we were expecting,” Christie said in a televised update just before 8 p.m. “We are ready, we are moving, salting and sanding the roads. The problem is you cannot get the trees off the road fast enough. That’s the biggest problem. We have 25 state roads that are completely closed and more than 60 that are partially closed.”
“We are out there plowing, salting sanding and trying to get power crews out there to get power restored quickly,” Christie said on radio station New Jersey 101.5. “The bottom line message, it’s dangerous, we’re in a state of emergency, so stay off the roads unless it’s absolutely necessary.”
The intensity of the precipitation falling today actually allowed snow to fall, despite the fact that temperatures were above freezing in many places. In a phenomenon called “dynamic cooling,” heavy rain dragged down colder air from the upper atmosphere. That allowed precipitation to freeze and fall as snow.The science is settled. Dynamic cooling is real.
Those ingredients, mixed well, allowed for one of the worst October snowstorms in New Jersey history.
“You all are going to be seeing an awful lot of me, because the states I am going to be concentrating on are Pennsylvania, Ohio, Florida, New Hampshire and Iowa, and I am going to be here a lot, so I am looking forward to working with you all,” Biden said.He had nothing to do with it, of course. Let's just forget he was in the Senate for four decades before waking up and finding himself the Vice President.
“We plan on winning Florida. We can’t win without Florida,” Biden added.
He also took aim at the GOP’s economic record, noting the deficits created under the Bush administration and the housing market collapse.
“I find it absolutely bizarre, Republicans moralizing about deficits. That’s a little like an arsonist moralizing about fire safety. These guys have zero credibility,” Biden said.
“Their vision of economic policy and their plan for prosperity lay in creative financial instruments, credit default swaps, collateralized debt obligations, subprime mortgages,” Biden said.
“They gave us a bubble, and they called it an economy,” he said.
Commuters and merchants in South Station say they are fed up with Occupy Boston squatters who are hogging electrical outlets and taking sponge baths in bathroom sinks, turning the bustling terminal into a unsanitary locker room.But let's all pretend this is some awesome grassroots movement sweeping America.
Transportation officials said they have sealed up some outlets after fearful commuters worried Occupy members powering up electronic gadgets close to ATM machines could see PIN numbers being punched in. Yet, there’s no quick solution to sharing the bathroom.
“The bathrooms seem more crowded and grimier,” said Roy Woodton, 36, a banker from Attleboro as he rushed to catch a train yesterday.
“They are always asking for food, for handouts,” said Eva Yuen, a manager at Serenade Chocolatier inside the station. “They smell intoxicated. It’s a mess.”
Station officials said they are fielding more complaints every day.
“There have been reports anecdotally about an increasing level of frustration by customers at South Station,” said Scott Farmelant, spokesman for the Massachusetts Bay Commuter Railroad company.
Farmelant said MBCR ticket managers have been given an earful at times from peeved rail commuters upset over members of Occupy Boston’s tent city using outlets as their personal power source and soiling bathrooms.
“They are complaining about the bathroom issues: long lines, they’re becoming unsanitary, people are taking sponge baths in there, washing their hair, sort of camping out there with a lot of clothing,” Farmelant said.
Meanwhile, Boston police are looking into threats made by the peaceful occupiers.
“The Boston Police Department is investigating harassment attempts and threats directed at department personnel. These threats appear to be generated by those either involved or sympathetic with the Occupy Boston movement,” Boston police Commissioner Edward F. Davis said in a statement last night.The appropriate steps would include smashing these morons and dispersing them back to mommy's basement.
“The department will not disclose the specific nature of the intelligence gathered relative to this matter. We are taking the appropriate steps to address any potential concerns.”
Dozens of new tents sprang up outside Oakland City Hall on Friday, a sight that encouraged some Occupy Wall Street supporters but infuriated others, who expressed frustration at the city's about-face on the encampment.Occupiers share her empathy.
In a matter of weeks, Oakland has welcomed campers at Frank Ogawa Plaza, warned them to leave, forcibly removed them, blocked their return and then allowed them to retake the grounds.
"It seems like every other day has a new set of rules," said Greg McConnell, president of the Jobs and Housing Coalition, which represents the city's largest companies.
Asked about the mixed messages, Mayor Jean Quan said Friday she feels the city has been clear. "We're being pretty consistent," she said. "We're asking them not to camp." A day earlier, Quan was booed away by protesters when she tried to make a speech.
On Friday, interim Police Chief Howard Jordan explained the latest rule: Police will not enter the camp unless there is a call for service.
By Friday evening, the rag-tag conglomeration at the plaza had grown from a few tents in the morning to about 60, and the lawn was covered almost as completely as it had been before Tuesday morning's police raid cleared the camp. At 9 p.m., campers were setting up tents and building a pathway that followed the route of one in the original encampment.
The California Nurses Association set up a tent in one corner near the impromptu day care center, and a small kitchen was again serving the homeless and other campers.
Impact on business
Nearby, small merchants complained that the camp has hurt their businesses, and they fear that a "general strike" called by protesters for Wednesday could further discourage customers. Meanwhile, big companies said the street protests affected their daily operations, and some Oakland residents said they were worried that police, busy with protesters, are even less able to respond to crimes in their neighborhoods.
What business owners said they fear is that the camp will devolve into chaos again, something some said has already begun.
The owner of Sankofa African Arts and Jewelry said that on the two mornings since protesters returned, her front doorway has reeked of urine.
She said her business has declined by 80 percent since Occupy Oakland began.
"I really, really want them to leave," said the owner, who gave only her first name, Ellen. She has owned her business for 17 years. "What they are doing is making business worse."
A camp supporter overheard her lament and shouted: "You would have lost your business anyway with the way the economy is going."Meanwhile, human parade float Michael Moore put his considerable weight behind the animals.
Ellen burst into tears.
Moji Ghafouri said business has gone down 25 percent at her Caffe Teatro. Protesters also smashed one of her windows.
"I'm a small business," she said. "If you're against corporations or big business, I'm not them."
As the camp grew in size Friday, filmmaker Michael Moore flew in to pump up supporters.Here's some video of the fat slob:
As he made his way to the front of the plaza, he was swarmed by many of the gathered 1,000 or so protesters screaming, "We love you, Michael!" and "Thank you!"
Moore's talk was like pouring honey on the plaza. They ate it up, and he clearly enjoyed them.
"Occupy Oakland! Occupy everywhere! I am honored to be here!" he yelled through a microphone.
As he ticked off a litany of the complaints that spawned the Occupy movement - lack of health care, economic disparity, corporate greed, joblessness, reduced wages - the crowd roared its approval.
"This is a leaderless movement with tens of millions of people," said Moore, who flew in to Oakland to address a booksellers convention. "Weather is not going to stop us."
Friday, October 28, 2011
Besides, nobody has mentioned rape rape, so for all we know it could just be some minor forcible sodomy or some childish horseplay gone awry.
Meanwhile Security group member Brendan Burke, a tall bad-ass looking dude who has been volunteering at the park since the second week, told The New York Observer that there have been “three or four” incidents of sexual assault in Zuccotti Park. But since Security — now working with a group called Community Alliance — deals in mediation and conflict resolution and have no authority to check people’s tents or act as bouncers to the park — they have directed these women to file complaints with the NYPD.So now sexual assault is referred to the Community Alliance for Global Justice? OK. This whole new utopian society really is coming along well.
Yet another mediation group called Community Watch is busy tearing down the tents at the time of this writing; they are sweeping the park for a routine cleaning, we are told by Watch organizer (and former Peace Council member) Suzanne Sutton. People were told about this “sweep” earlier in the morning, we are told, yet we witness several heated arguments with individuals who refuse to take their tarp down, or who have lost items to the giant storage bins where things go if you are not around when it’s time to take your tent/tarp down. If an item is unclaimed, it will be going to a storage facility nearby. The generators, when they come, will not be used to be keeping Occupiers warm.This won't be ending well.
Maybe it is the cold weather, or the drop in morale from the lack of Internet connection, but the scene down at Zuccotti Park is much grimmer than ones we’ve previously encountered. There seems to be a lot more heated arguments, a lot more panhandlers, and at least 10 guys stop and chat us up about our legs. One of these men, Marcel, is busy yelling about his tent being torn down. “They only pay attention to me when I yell,” he tells us. “Where I come from, you’ve got to stand up for yourself, or you get beat.”Good times.
According to Public Policy Polling, 43% approved of Walker's performance in May, 47% approve now.Now today, also according to PPP, comes news the SCOAMF has plummeted to 44%.
Obama continues to be unpopular in Wisconsin with only 44% of voters approving of him to 51% who disapprove. It's yet another competitive state at the Presidential level where his standing with independents is abysmal- he's at 36/57 with them. In mid-May, shortly after the killing of Osama bin Laden, Obama stood at 52/44 in the state. But he's dropped 15 points on the margin over the subsequent five months.With Obama below 50% pretty much everywhere, look for the Democrats and their media enablers to furiously push for a third-party candidate. It may be his only hope.
Mitt Romney has pulled to within 3 points of Obama at 46-43. That's the closest Romney's polled to Obama in PPP's polling of the state all year. In the first half of 2011 Obama had a double digit advantage over Romney, leading by 12 on a May poll and 10 on a March poll. There are 2 things causing Obama's increased difficulty- one is that he's gone from leading by 11 points with independents to trailing by 4 with them. And where he was once getting 9% from Republicans, that's now faded all the way down to 2%.
'This Is Like War. You Know, Soldiers Do It When They Occupy a Place. I'm Sure the Mountains of Afghanistan Get Pretty Cold'
Anti-Wall Street protesters around the U.S. who are vowing to stand their ground against the police and politicians are also digging in against a different kind of adversary: cold weather.Everyone is calling it that? Really?
With the temperature dropping, they are stockpiling donated coats, blankets and scarves, trying to secure cots and military-grade tents, and getting survival tips from the homeless people who have joined their encampments.
"Everyone's been calling it our Valley Forge moment," said Michael McCarthy, a former Navy medic in Providence. "Everybody thought that George Washington couldn't possibly survive in the Northeast." Valley Forge in Pennsylvania was the site of the Continental Army's winter camp during the Revolutionary War.
These tools are now comparing themselves to George Washington and his men? Good grief. But not only are there comparisons to the Continental Army, but to today's battlefield conditions.
"I welcome the challenge of this cold weather," said Dwayne Hudson, a landscaper who has been living at the Occupy Denver site for nearly two weeks. "This is like war. You know, soldiers do it when they occupy a place. I'm sure the mountains of Afghanistan get pretty cold."Funny, but I don't hear our soldiers whine like that.
But after the first snowfall, he admitted: "It's getting tough."
Eric Martin, who is on Occupy Boston's winterization committee, said the group had raised about $35,000, which could help buy winter supplies. Various ideas are being discussed to keep tents warm without using combustion-based heaters, which are forbidden. Another proposal: igloos.Indigenous peoples are laughing at them.
"We're looking at ideas from military vets to survivalists, to the homeless community to indigenous peoples," Martin said.
Why did he join the Occupy Wall Street protests? "I was inspired to join this because I have been waiting for something like this all of my life."Wait, what? Having political discussions was almost taboo in this country? Good Lord, is he for real? If only we could get these liberals to STFU for five minutes there's be much more harmony in the land.
"I grew up in America, in Minnesota and always felt like I wanted to have political discussions with people but it was something that was almost taboo in this country."
"I've been waiting for people to actually wake up from their consumerist slumber that most westerners have been under for so long and actually have discussions about what is real."It's like, so very real, man. It's humongous. Awesome, man.
"What's happening right now in our political system is very real. Our environmental system and our economic system are very real. They have humongous impacts on us and the world around us but we haven't been talking about it and this is getting people to talk about it."
What he thinks the outcome of the protests will be: "We succeed and we create a new system of governance that allows for true democracy where corporation voices are not seen as people and we have direct control over our government."So is he staying if this utopia of true democracy happens or is he still leaving? I doubt he even has a clue what he's wearing today, let alone what's happening tomorrow.
"If we fail, this civilization that is known as America will collapse. It will turn into a police state and I will flee back to Australia and live in my little community in Tasmania and hope that it doesn't reach over there."
"As far as I can tell, there are a lot of people listening. There are over 2,000 occupations in this country and it's happening all over the world. I think people know intrinsically that there's something broken in this system and they want something to happen."Two thousand? Really? I'll have some of what he's smoking, thankyouverymuch.
"As soon as all those grievances are heard we can kind of make some patterns out of that and we can start looking at solutions. I think we can start looking at solutions now and find out how to fix this."Patterns leading to solutions. It's a start. Hope he's got this all down on paper before he forgets.
"This Occupation has grown so fast and we are having an influx of people that this system has failed. This system has chewed up and spat out. They're very broken in a lot of ways and they're coming in droves to our Occupation because we have free food, we have free medical, we have free clothing and free supplies."Well, they had free food until the cut off the homeless this week. But hey, free clothes and medical? Where do I sign up? It's sounds almost as great as Cuba!
He sounds even dumber when you hear him speak. American hasn't been this galvanized since -- wait for it -- World War II!
Is it any wonder why the self-proclaimed Queen of the Occupation is distancing herself from her own movement? When you're left to defend this behavior, it may be time to head off into hibernation.
A city woman is accused of pimping out a 16-year-old girl she met in Victory Park during the Occupy NH demonstrations.Via Big Government, h/t to Ben.
Police said the teen’s mother called them Thursday about noon to say her daughter was missing and that her photograph had been posted on a website advertising adult party entertainment.
Investigators looked at the website, found the girl’s photo was posted there, along with pictures of three other women, in an advertisement offering men to “come and have fun with four beautiful ladies” in Manchester.
An undercover officer went to 341 Hanover St. to meet with a woman who negotiated a deal for the officer pay $150 to have sex with the teen.
When Justina Jensen, 23, who lives at the address, confirmed she had negotiated the deal with him, the officer identified himself as a police officer. Police said the woman tried to run but was restrained and arrested after a brief struggle.
The missing teen was found inside the apartment.
Such concern for his fellow 99%. Now if only some of them could just die, Donny could tell us all he warned us. Such compassion.
The city has stripped Occupy Wall Street protesters of their power.The report reflexively reminds us it was peaceful. Of course.
Dozens of firefighters and police officers entered Zuccotti Park Friday morning to confiscate generators and gas canisters.
Fire trucks and police vans pulled up on the corner of Broadway and Liberty St. at about 8.30 a.m. and asked the Occupy Wall Street protesters to bring the items to them, saying they were a health and fire hazard.
"They made an announcement on a bullhorn saying: 'We are here to take the generators, could you please bring them up to us on the corner of Broadway and Liberty Street'," said James Bennett, a member of the information working group.
When no one from Occupy Wall Street surrendered the generators, more than 20 uniformed FDNY and NYPD officials entered the park to seize them, witnesses said.
The protesters say five generators were seized in total, including one which was biodiesel and ran on used vegetable oil.
A protester, angered by the presence of a news crew inside Zuccotti Park Friday morning, threatened to stab Fox 5 News reporter John Huddy.Here's the report from Huddy:
What has been an otherwise violence-free period during his six weeks covering the Occupy Wall Street movement, took a turn for John Huddy. He explained what happened during Good Day New York:
"This is somebody I've come across several times for the last few days. He threatened to stab me in the throat with a pen. He ripped the mic out of my hand," said Huddy.
"I have a meeting with Bloomberg," said the incoherent protester. The man was soon arrested by the NYPD.
Naturally, he misses the mark by a wide margin.
So Bernie is in jail for a thousand years and Rajat Gupta, formerly of Goldman Sachs, stands in a courtroom this week and hears the charges against him on alleged insider trading with Raj Rajaratnam's Galleon Group hedge fund. Rajaratnam has already gone away for 11 years on insider trading. Another big fat one-percenter who got caught, after years when he thought he could get away with anything in a Wild West, casino economy.Now any "reporter" worth a nickel would see the obvious connections between Madoff, Rajaratnam and Gupta.
Gupta says he is innocent, which means he must have a perfectly good explanation of why he called Rajaratnam within seconds of getting real good boardroom information at Goldman Sachs. And Gupta's lawyer says his client is a man of integrity.
They all are until caught.
Not only were all of them massive contributors to the Democratic Party, the latter two are basically joined at the hip with Obama. But since the media largely ignores that fact, an imbecile like Lupica has zero knowledge of this, nor is he inclined to do even five minutes worth of research.
Of course, Lupica already has his villains, predictably enough.
They would not fit in too well at Zuccotti Park, where you really do find a much better class of American. One of the things they talk about and yell about sometimes is more government regulation, at a time when you are supposed to be some kind of crummy socialist hater of capitalism if you even suggest that. We tried less regulation over the last eight years under Bush and Cheney and all who still think they were such great American capitalists. How did that work out for everybody?How many Bush and Cheney supporters are in prison or facing trial?
We keep hearing from those who hate everything about Occupy Wall Street - those whose only relevant political philosophy is "I've Got Mine" - that the protestors have no coherent message. It is another lie, like the one about how nobody in these protests really wants to work.OK, so what's the message, other than the Democratic Party takes millions from criminals?
They are the greatest generation in their own minds.
As fed-up cops are prepared to slap rowdy “Occupy Wall Street” protesters with civil lawsuits, fed-up Zuccotti Park protesters have found a way take a slap at Mother Nature.If only the rest of us could get away from you.
Some of the OWS masses dodged yesterday’s cold and rain by ditching their tents and huddling in a nearby art gallery with free WiFi.
Some two dozen protesters and their gear took refuge in the nearby Charlotte’s Place art and public space run by Trinity Wall Street church.
In addition to the Internet connection, Charlotte’s Place has live music at 2 p.m., art on the walls, books and more than a dozen tables.
“We’re basically here to warm up and not be wet,” said an 18-year-old protester named Dylan, who has been in Zuccotti Park for three weeks.
A demonstrator from The Bronx named John added, “I’m glad I found this place. We can come here to get away from the protest.”
There the possibility of accumulating snow even in Manhattan tomorrow. I'm not urging you throw snowballs at the protesters, but if provoked you have permission.
Meanwhile, further north in Boston some fearless protesters harken back to their halcyon days as Boy Scouts in preparations for the wintry blast.
Chilly conditions, rain and pending snow didn’t deter members of Occupy Boston last night as the movement approaches its one month mark.Bob Marley? Really?
Occupants of Dewey Square braved the freezing rain by wearing layers, weatherizing their tents and feasting on hot meals.
“I was a Boy Scout. I used to camp out in snow. I’m not worried,” said Robert C. Marley as he threw on an extra layer of clothing.
Fortunately for them, they've formed a committee to deal with Mother Nature.
As last night’s temperatures fell toward freezing, Dewey Square demonstrators said they were prepared to battle the cold through an organized “weatherization committee” and classes that teach members how to cope with hypothermia.I also formed my own weatherization committee last night by bringing more wood in for the fireplace.
Other Boston occupiers leaned more toward the logical.
“I could use an extra sleeping bag. I could use another tarp,” he said. “I don’t think I’m going to be warm until next summer. But, I’d rather have snow than rain. Snow don’t leak in my tent.”He'll be in for a surprise.
Thursday, October 27, 2011
Newt Gingrich spoke at an education forum in midtown Manhattan this evening hosted by the College Board, and naturally the conversation-turned to Occupy Wall Street, the now weeks long demonstrations in Lower Manhattan.As to being sympathetic to them, Gingrich may want to tread very carefully. It's one thing to rail against the Bernankes of the world, quite another to embrace a discredited, socialistic, anti-Semitic movement now the face of Occupy Wall Street.
The former House Speaker had a suggestion for where the protests should go next:
“If the Occupy Wall Street people really wanted to help children, they would have an Occupy Teacher’s Union Headquarters Movement, because that is a major cause of income inequality in America,” he told moderators Joel Klein, the former chancellor of the New York City school system and Paul Gigot of The Wall Street Journal.
The event was sponsored by the College Board and News Corporation.
Mr. Gingrich also suggested that if the protesters really want to see how “The 1 Percent” live, they should head to Harvard and Yale, which still charge students despite possessing enormous endowments.
“Somebody who has $36 billion in their endowment has to have an amazing level of chutzpah to then charge people to come as undergraduates. They just have to take a tiny share of the interest on their endowment to give away the undergraduate education for free. If the Occupy Wall Street people want to see what the upper 1% looks like, go look at a place that has $36 billion and still charges thousands of dollars to undergraduates,” he said.
“I am very sympathetic at their anger,” he said. “I share their frustration at a system in which the government has colluded with the big boys to take care of each other. I focus more on Ben Bernake at the Federal Reserve and with Geithner at Treasury and with Dodd and Frank in Congress, but I sympathize with their anger.”
Boehner: 'We Have the Ability to Limit Their Use of Funds to Try to Bring This Administration to Heel'
Bring them to heel? I don't know there, Johnny. There could be hidden racial dog-whistle codewords going on there.
@2:48 - Ingraham: Are you saying that the president, with his approach today, from what you know of it, is acting around his Constitutional parameters and violating those parameters?Thanks to Matt Wolking for the clip.
Boehner: Well I have great concerns that he may be. And I know that our committees of jurisdiction...are looking at these proposals to make sure that the president isn't exceeding his authority.
@3:27 - Ingraham: What will you do if you believe he is exceeding his authority? What recourse do you have?
Boehner: We've got an appropriations process that's under control here where we have the ability to limit their use of funds to try to bring this administration to heel.
@3:46 - Boehner: I've had my share of disappointments this year, but I gotta tell you what, there is nothing that has disappointed me more over the last eight weeks than to watch the President of the United States basically give up on the economy, and give up on the American people, decide he's going to quit governing, and spend his entire next 14 months campaigning.
@4:09 - Boehner: If the president is serious, he ought to be up here working with us to find common ground to solve the issues that the American people want us to solve.
On Obama's assertion that Occupy Wall Street isn't much different from the tea party protests:
@5:52 - Boehner: I don’t think it's a valid comparison at all.
Since Obama enjoys recycling speeches, be on the lookout for a reprisal of this.
President Obama strayed from his prepared remarks at a Labor Day rally to accuse his opponents of talking about him "like a dog."
Obama was in Milwaukee to speak at the Milwaukee Laborfest, attended by Labor Secretary Hilda Solis, Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood and AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka. He used the speech to promote his $50 billion infrastructure plan and to criticize Republicans ahead of crucial midterm elections.
"Some powerful interests who had been dominating the agenda in Washington for a very long time and they're not always happy with me. They talk about me like a dog. That's not in my prepared remarks, but it's true," he told the union crowd.
Police sergeants are coming out swinging today against obnoxious Wall Street protesters, saying they plan to "pursue legal action" against demonstrators who injure any of its members.This violence wouldn't be happening if Michael Bloomberg were still alive.
Ed Mullins, president of the NYPD's Sergeant’s Benevolent Association, said his group plans to pursue legal claims against Occupy Wall Street protesters should they cause injury to any of its 5,000 members.
“In light of the growing violence attendant to the 'Occupy' movements across the country, particularly as evidenced by the recent events in Oakland, I am compelled to place these so-called 'occupiers' on notice that physical assaults on police officers will not be tolerated," he said.
Mullins added that any "assault on a police officer is not only punishable as a felony in the State of New York, but will also be met with swift and certain legal action by the SBA, which will seek monetary damages against any individual who causes injury to a New York City Sergeant.”
He said over 20 cops have been injured in Occupy Wall Street-related incidents.
"I am deeply concerned that protesters will be emboldened by the recent rash of violent acts against police officers in other cities. New York’s police officers are working around the clock as the already overburdened economy in New York is being drained by 'occupiers' who intentionally and maliciously instigate needless and violent confrontations with the police," said Mullins.
Ken Knight works for the U.S. Postal Service in Chandler, Ariz.; Casey Helbling owns a small business in Minneapolis; Wendi Smith of Corydon, Ind., is identified by the campaign as an artist and retired professor; and Juanita Martinez is a retired teacher from Brighton, Colo.They are actually the totally random winners of a dinner date with the SCOAMF through the little campaign competition they held. The original asking price for a lottery ticket was $5 but due to lack of interest the price was lowered to $3. Seems that just like everything else associated with this administration it too was subjected to a downgrade.
The article did pique my curiosity in one regard. Notice the name Casey Helbling who is identified as a small business owner. Well I was curious why they didn't identify the business or at least what sector it was in so I fired up the handy dandy search engine and in about 10 seconds found his Twitter account along with his website for his business. He is a software developer who prides himself on using 'Green' technology and promoting 'Green' causes and after browsing his Twitter history a flaming feel good liberal who love grassfed beef and gluten free food. Oh and is married to his brother.
I am sure the Secret Service presence will be a little tighter with a postal employee headed their way.
I am sure everybody joins me in congratulating these common Americans for getting a chance to eat with the President and his wife. It's just I bet the meal won't be prepared by Paula Deen.
But Biden will be a no-show. He’s en route to Saudi Arabia on a diplomatic mission.
Savor the irony.
Organizers of Occupy Portland say they fear as much as $20,000 donated to the group through a PayPal account has disappeared.Theft, hacking and death threats. All in a day's work for these chumps.
They also say the group's finance committee has hijacked the demonstration's Internet domain name and filed for incorporation against the wishes of the group's decision-making body.
The demonstrator who filed the papers with the state said she did so to protect the protest, and she has received death threats as a result.
The rift arose before members of the movement joined labor union supporters Wednesday to march through downtown Portland during rush hour. The peaceful rally drew about 1,000 people, but caused few traffic disruptions as protesters repeated their mantra: "We are the 99 percent!"Are dogs, babies and people on bikes considered marchers?
Half a dozen speakers praised the occupation and urged the group to keep fighting. Marchers included children and dogs, babies in strollers and people on bikes.
The harmony of the gathering contrasted to a flare-up within the local movement.
Earlier in the day, Jordan LeDoux, who works for the media, communications, public relations and web team of the protest, said that since 8 p.m. Tuesday, Occupy Portland has not been able to get into its own Internet page, occupypdx.org.
LeDoux said a member of the finance committee apparently took control of the website.
With thousands of Occupy Wall Street demonstrators roughing it in parks for up to six weeks, garbage, human waste and hygiene are becoming a growing worry in public encampments nationwide.Keeping themselves clean has become a daunting task. Just imagine if these people had to live, you know, normal lives.
Poor food storage exacerbated a rat infestation in Oakland. Inspectors found open human waste in Philadelphia. Hypothermia cases developed in Denver after a snowstorm hit.
Disease is the chief concern with so many people living in close proximity without proper sanitation.
"Any time you have a large number of people in an event like this, there's potential for illness to spread rapidly," said Angelo Bellomo, director of environmental health for Los Angeles County. "Conditions can change within an hour or two."
Poor food storage, along with public urination and defecation, led Oakland police to dislodge 200 protesters from a plaza outside City Hall before dawn Tuesday.
In Philadelphia, sanitary conditions have worsened at the 350-tent Occupy Philly camp, said city managing director Richard Negrin. The camp has four portable toilets that have not been cleaned or emptied regularly.
Health officials, who conduct daily inspections of Los Angeles' camp, have directed organizers to dispose of wastewater from portable showers into drains rather than the ground, and to increase the number of portable toilets, have them emptied twice a day and provide water jugs for hand-washing.
Close-quarters living can facilitate the spread of germs through airborne, foodborne or person-to-person contact. Norovirus has caused outbreaks of gastroenteritis on cruise ships, for example, while adenovirus has caused influenza and other respiratory illnesses in military barracks.
Personal hygiene has been a more difficult issue.
Many people use showers at homeless shelters in Skid Row, while some have organized bathing trips to homes, said organizer Gia Trimble.
Others said they used the camp showers on site, filling up a plastic bag with solar-heated water or hot water from a City Hall faucet. The bag, which has a tube to spray the water, hangs from a cord.
"I use the solar-heated shower or even those moist towelettes," Alcala said. "We're clean here."
Campers said they weren't worried about illnesses. Nevertheless, some were taking commonsense precautions.
Tommy Schacht, who was brushing his teeth with bottled water on a recent morning, said he goes home to shower and change clothes, and mostly used bathrooms at nearby businesses or public facilities instead of the portable toilets on site.
"I don't worry about that at all, but I try to stay away from people that are dirty," he said.
On its face, it is difficult to see myself in the 99 percent these protesters claim to represent. They are mostly young, white college students, although a few middle-aged and senior citizens were in the mix.
And I suspect a lot of professionals are not cheering these dissidents on.
In fact, I overhead one well-dressed Asian man tell a group of bicycle cops at the scene that they should “bring out the tear gas and call it a day.”
“You would be doing me a favor,” the man said.
When I caught up to him and asked why he felt that way, he sheepishly changed his tune.
“That’s the great thing about this country, you can stand up and say what you want, but I think they made their point,” he said.
While the protesters were listening to speakers before marching on City Hall, an elderly white woman walked past calling them “Sons-of-b----.”
But what really struck me was the small number of black and brown people among the marchers. I had to hunt for Brian Johnson, a 40-year-old African-American male who was surrounded by a group of college-age white males wearing bandanas.
Johnson said he is committed to doing whatever it takes to support this cause.
“If we would pay attention to this movement, we would understand that it is not about young white people. It is about all of us,” he said. “A lot of people are struggling when they don’t have to.”
Zakiyyah S. Muhammad was the only African-American female I spotted.
“I’m here because this has gotten the attention of the people who make policy, but I don’t think enough of us has gotten involved,” she told me.
“It’s a funny thing to see white people marching and black people sitting around talking,” Muhammad mused.
“White people are marching for change like we used to do and black people are complaining.”
I left the protesters sitting on the floor at City Hall. Fists raised.
Something is definitely wrong with that picture.
Fox 5 came to Zuccotti Park on Wednesday to cover another story about the Occupy Wall Street protestors but instead we saw something disturbing at the entrance to the park: Two men carrying signs on the sidewalk that borders the park were cursing and chanting anti-Semitic remarks.Sure. No hate down there. Can't you just see all the smiling faces?
Some security and community affairs members with Occupy Wall Street quickly intervened and told the men they were not welcome.
"Your message of hate is not welcome here," protesters said.
This is not the first time we have seen messages of hate, including anti-Semitic signs and slogans, both in and around Zuccotti Park.
A community affairs representative for OWS acknowledged that the protest and the media attention are attracting people like that, but that they will not tolerate anti-Semitic comments and hate.
Protesters with Occupy Atlanta marched to the Georgia-Pacific building downtown late Tuesday afternoon in an attempt to levitate the building.This is reported as news, but really, this has to be a joke, right?
The group held a news conference shortly after 3 p.m. where they announced they will march to the building around 5:30 p.m. if the Koch brothers, who own the company, don't remove all of their money from political campaigns and institutions.
"The Koch brothers spent vast amounts of money to insure that legislation in Washington benefits their private and corporate interest, rather than those of the American people. This means fewer protections for you and your family and less taxation and regulation for them" William Marshall said.
Williams said should they refuse they will march on the Georgia-Pacific building in an attempt to levitate it in a spirit of anti-war demonstrations of the 1960s.
Occupy Boston protesters say they’re digging in and staying in Dewey Square for as long as it takes to bring a sea change to America’s corporate culture, even as wintry weather arrives early, posing serious threats to the tent city.Really? OK, then stay there and function by yourself. See how much fun it is when you have to make some money.
“This isn’t going to end. No end in sight, unless our demands have been met,” protester James Teague, 22, of Lowell said last night as campers hunkered down for rain overnight and even light snow tonight. “If you look around, it’s a functioning society.”
City Health Commissioner Barbara Ferrer warned hard times are ahead for those who remain outside.
“If they have a place to stay when the weather gets bad that’s not in a tent, that’s where they should really be going once the weather gets cold,” she said while touring the encampment yesterday. “This is going to be a rough place.”
Now they really may understand where the Tea Party is coming from.
The Occupy Wall Street volunteer kitchen staff launched a “counter” revolution yesterday -- because they’re angry about working 18-hour days to provide food for “professional homeless” people and ex-cons masquerading as protesters.Maybe he now understands how the 53% who pay the freight in this country feel. But I doubt it.
For three days beginning tomorrow, the cooks will serve only brown rice and other spartan grub instead of the usual menu of organic chicken and vegetables, spaghetti bolognese, and roasted beet and sheep’s-milk-cheese salad.
They will also provide directions to local soup kitchens for the vagrants, criminals and other freeloaders who have been descending on Zuccotti Park in increasing numbers every day.
To show they mean business, the kitchen staff refused to serve any food for two hours yesterday in order to meet with organizers to air their grievances, sources said.
As the kitchen workers met with the “General Assembly’’ last night, about 300 demonstrators stormed from the park to Reade Street and Broadway, where they violently clashed with cops.
Officers made at least 10 arrests when rowdy demonstrators refused to get out of the street and stop blocking traffic. A dozen cops on scooters tried to force them back to the sidewalk.
There were no reported injuries.
The demonstrators said they were angry over the violence in Oakland.
After making their way to Union Square, many of the protesters returned to Zuccotti.
The Assembly officially approved the three-day menu crackdown announced earlier in the day -- insisting everybody would be fed something during that period.
Some protesters threatened that the high-end meals could be cut off completely if the vagrants and criminals don’t disperse.
Unhappiness with their unwelcome guests was apparent throughout the day.
“We need to limit the amount of food we’re putting out” to curb the influx of derelicts, said Rafael Moreno, a kitchen volunteer.
A security volunteer added that the cooks felt “overworked and underappreciated."
Wednesday, October 26, 2011
Baby X has finally arrived on the New York art scene.Here's a concept she might want to grasp: If you give birth again, think about the safety of your child instead of your career.
Brooklyn conceptual artist Marni Kotak delivered her biggest performance ever — giving birth to a baby before an audience at an art gallery in Bushwick.
As works of art go, the child — named Ajax — was on the kind massive scale that would make even Christo blush: 9 pounds, 2 ounces and 21 inches long.
Kotak, 36, spent each day of the last month of her pregnancy inside an art installation set up like a birthing room at the Microscope Gallery in Brooklyn as part of the “project,” which she dubbed “The Birth of Baby X.”
She said she wanted to show that giving birth was the “highest form of art.”
At 10:17 Tuesday she treated a crowed of about 20 gallery visitors to her new creation.
“The atmosphere inside the gallery was magical,” wrote blogger Katarina Hybenova on the bushwickdaily.com website.
“I believe that all of the participants were deeply moved by this emotional, raw and true ‘piece of art’. . . Everyone was also very helpful.”
Yesterday, mom and baby were resting comfortably at home, said her husband, Jason Bell.
He said the birth was assisted by a doula and a midwife. Kotak started having contractions on Monday evening, and spent the night going through labor at the gallery.
“We stayed the night there because we weren’t sure [how long it was going to take.]” he said.
“Then all of a sudden it was like, it’s happening now. And it was a big shock how fast it happened.”
He added “She said it was worst pain she ever felt in her life.”
There is also another misconception perpetuated in this report that I would like to dispel. YOU CAN NOT ENLIST IN THE MILITARY AS A DIVERSIONARY PROGRAM BECAUSE OF A JUDGE!
I am sort of the resident expert on this since I served as an Army recruiter in Alabama in the early 90's. Any applicant who walked in the door and either stated or it was discovered had come there with the intent to enlist to avoid jail was automatically disqualified. Permanently. I wish this urban legend would die because you do not want to know how many people I turned away for just that reason. Sometimes they came down there at the behest of their parents in an attempt to get junior off on some charge or a judge not really understanding that such a thing was not tolerated had given them the option. Think about this for a minute folks. If people could be enlisted in the military instead of going to jail why don't you see recruiters in every courtroom in America? So can we knock it off. And anybody who says they enlisted to avoid jail is lying to you.
Well according to some folks who have taken it upon themselves to interpret the recently released from the FBI it is a clear indication that members of the military are nothing but gangbangers looking to kill a little time in between their incarcerations in the penal system. Of course these are the same folks who wet their pants over pictures of "assault weapons" and the mention of high capacity magazines.
Folks here is the portion of the report dealing with the findings regarding the military. I will call your attention to the lack of specifics so I am not sure what sort of conclusions can really be drawn from this report. There has always been former members of gangs in the military and gang membership does not in itself indicate anything further in most cases then self preservation.
Gangs and the Military
Gang recruitment of active duty military personnel constitutes a significant criminal threat to the US military. Members of nearly every major street gang, as well as some prison gangs and OMGs, have been reported on both domestic and international military installations, according to NGIC analysis and multiple law enforcement reporting. Through transfers and deployments, military-affiliated gang members expand their culture and operations to new regions nationwide and worldwide, undermining security and law enforcement efforts to combat crime. Gang members with military training pose a unique threat to law enforcement personnel because of their distinctive weapons and combat training skills and their ability to transfer these skills to fellow gang members.
NGIC reporting indicates that law enforcement officials in at least 100 jurisdictions have come into contact with, detained, or arrested an active duty or former military gang member within the past three years.
Gang members have been reported in every branch of the US militarym, although a large proportion of these gang members and dependent gang members of military personnel are affiliated with the US Army, Army Reserves, and National Guard branches.
Many street gang members join the military to escape the gang lifestyle or as an alternative to incarceration, but often revert back to their gang associations once they encounter other gang members in the military. Other gangs target the US military and defense systems to expand their territory, facilitate criminal activity such as weapons and drug trafficking, or to receive weapons and combat training that they may transfer back to their gang. Incidents of weapons theft and trafficking may have a negative impact on public safety or pose a threat to law enforcement officials.
As of April 2011, the NGIC has identified members of at least 53 gangs whose members have served in or are affiliated with US military. Among the identified gangs with military-trained members are street gangs such as the Asian Boyz, Bloods, Crips, Gangster Disciples, Latin Kings, MS-13, Sureños, Tiny Rascal Gangsters, and the Juggalos; the Aryan Brotherhood, Barrio Azteca, and Texas Syndicate prison gangs; and OMGs including the Bandidos, Hells Angels, Mongols, Outlaws, and Vagos. Some gangs, particularly OMGs, actively recruit members with military training or advise members without criminal records to join the military for necessary weapons and combat training.
Younger gang members without criminal records are attempting to join the military, as well as concealing tattoos and gang affiliation during the recruitment process, according to NGIC reporting.
Deployments have resulted in integrating gang members with service members and/or dependents on or near overseas military installations, including those in Afghanistan, Germany, Iraq, Italy, Japan, and South Korea. US military officials have reported a rise in gang graffiti both on and off post in Afghanistan and Iraq (see Figure 14).
BTW I think that picture is funny as hell, I watch Sons of Anarchy on a regular basis and back in my youth was known to look at an issue or two of Easy Rider magazine.