Saturday, October 31, 2015

Chris's Sweet Halloween Pie Recipe

By Saveur

Navy Bean Pie
Navy Bean Pie
Andre Baranowski
The silky, custardlike base of this autumnal pie is made from sweetened navy bean purée spiced with nutmeg, vanilla, and cinnamon. Pies made in this way have their roots in dietary guidelines set forth by religious leader Elijah Muhammad. In his 1967 treatise How to Eat to Live, he wrote that beans were a blessed food—but that sweet potatoes weren't fit for man to eat. His daughter developed a sweet potato pie–like recipe using navy beans that was so delicious, it became the most popular way to raise money for the Nation of Islam. Its members hawked them on street corners from the early 1970s onward.

Makes one 9" pie  

For the Crust

1 12 cups flour, plus more
7 tbsp. unsalted butter, cubed and chilled
1 tsp. kosher salt
14 cup ice-cold water

For the Filling

1 cup evaporated milk
1 cup canned navy beans, rinsed and drained
1 cup sugar
4 tbsp. unsalted butter
1 12 tbsp. flour
1 tsp. ground cinnamon
12 tsp. freshly grated nutmeg
3 eggs
1 tbsp. vanilla extract


Make the crust: Pulse flour, butter, and salt in a food processor into pea-size crumbles. Add water; pulse until dough forms. Flatten dough into a disk and wrap in plastic wrap; chill 1 hour.
Make the filling: Heat oven to 350°. Purée evaporated milk, beans, sugar, butter, flour, vanilla, cinnamon, nutmeg, and eggs in a blender until smooth. On a lightly floured surface, roll dough into a 12″ round. Fit into a 9″ pie plate; trim edges and crimp. Pour filling over dough; bake until golden brown on top and filling is set, about 1 hour. Let pie cool completely before serving.

Friday, October 30, 2015

who is Eric Holder


General Holder received bipartisan acclamations, and the press loved it when he vowed to “clean up” the Justice Department.

Holder championed President Obama's power to assassinate people outside the United States — including Americans — based solely on the president's secret decrees. On March 6, 2012, Holder defended presidentially-ordered killings: "Due process and judicial process are not one and the same, particularly when it comes to national security. The Constitution guarantees due process, it does not guarantee judicial process." TV comedian Stephen Colbert mocked Holder: "Trial by jury, trial by fire, rock, paper scissors, who cares? Due process just means that there is a process that you do." For Holder and the Obama administration, reciting certain legal phrases in secret memos was all it took to justify executions.

Though Holder had criticized the Bush administration's warrantless wiretaps before he took office, he became the key defender of National Security Agency's email dragnet. Even after Edward Snowden had revealed that the NSA was illegally vacuuming up millions of Americans' email and other communications, Holder falsely proclaimed in June 2013 that, "The Government cannot target anyone... unless there is an appropriate, and documented, foreign intelligence purpose for the acquisition (such as for the prevention of terrorism, hostile cyber activities, or nuclear proliferation..." But confidential documents revealed that the NSA's definition of terrorist suspect is so ludicrously broad that it includes "someone searching the web for suspicious stuff."

Holder has continued the tradition of previous attorney generals of exonerating government officials who commit politically-approved crimes. Though President Obama admitted that U.S. government officials were guilty of torture, the only CIA official that Holder prosecuted was John Kirakou, a courageous whistleblower who publicly admitted that the CIA was waterboarding. Holder is also complicit in the Obama administration's decision to suppress a massive amount of information about illegal interrogation practices that occurred during the prior administration.

Holder was lavishly praised last month after he announced that the Justice Department will cease sharing loot seized from Americans with state and local police. But in 2009, shortly after he took office, Holder bragged at the Asset Forfeiture National Leadership Conference about his role in championing forfeiture in congressional testimony ten years earlier and proclaimed that "the Asset Forfeiture Program provides vitally important funding for law enforcement." Holder reversed course last month only after a Washington Post expose proved that his favored program created an incentive for lawmen to wrongfully confiscate property from thousands of innocent Americans. Holder has proposed no compensation to the victims of the seizure frenzy he helped unleash.

Reported by “In FY 2012, DOJ spent more than $58 million on conferences…despite an amendment to FY 2008 appropriations to stop DOJ conference spending beyond $15 [million]…In 2010, the department spent a whopping $90 million on conferences.

One DOJ conference during 2012 included 30 employees traveling to Indonesia, costing $500,000; another cost $200,000 for 4 employees to head to Senegal; a third cost $100,000 for a conference in the Northern Mariana Islands that was not attended by anyone from the DOJ.”

Newspapers also heaped accolades on Holder for his declaration last month on Martin Luther King Day about "the troubling reality...that we lack the ability right now to comprehensively track" police shootings across the nation. But there was a law on the books that Congress enacted in 1994 to require the Attorney General to collect and publish annual data on "the use of excessive force by law enforcement officers." Holder, like prior attorney generals, ignored the mandate. And the Justice Department continues covering up killings by federal agents, including a rash of fatal shootings by Border Patrol agents and the FBI killing of 27-year-old Ibragim Todashev during questioning at his Florida apartment in 2013 regarding the Boston Marathon bombing.

Since Obama was lawfully elected, Holder's Justice Department has acted as if anything that Obama's appointees chose to do is automatically legal. Thus, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission concocted a new rule to punish businesses that refuses to hire ex-convicts. Thus, the Department of Housing and Urban Development devised an arbitrary new standard to punish businesses that fail to give preferential treatment to minorities (a policy that the Supreme Court will likely strike down later this year). Nor has Holder had any complaints about the White House's frenetic rewriting of the Affordable Care Act to protect Democratic candidates from an anti-ObamaCare backlash.

Instead of seeking justice, as he is constitutionally and ethically required to do, Holder has politicized the Department beyond recognition. Instead of enforcing the rule of law and following legal precedent, he has ignored and twisted the law to suit his president. The Wall Street Journal published an editorial appropriately named “The Department of Injustice.”

Rightly called Obama’s Enforcer, Eric Holder sets the tone and makes the decisions for the Department. Aside from his own contempt of Congress, the “Fast and Furious” debacle, illegally seizing reporters’ phone records, Mr. Holder is deliberately protecting prosecutors who have violated the law, the constitution, fundamental principles of fairness, and longstanding rules of ethics in hundreds of criminal prosecutions.

A recent report from the non-partisan, non-profit Project on Government Oversight reveals more than 400 instances of intentional or reckless misconduct by Justice Department prosecutors in the last decade. A significant number of those have been confirmed by the Department itself during Mr. Holder’s tenure.

After Obama himself, Holder bears primary blame for leaving the 2008 campaign promise of "hope and change" in ruins. Almost a century ago, H.L. Mencken quipped that the "ironically so-called" Justice Department was in fact "a fecund source of oppression and corruption..." Unfortunately, Holder did little in office to refute Baltimore's best-known cynic.

How The Internet is like a toilet

Thursday, October 15, 2015

How Congress Profits from War

Title: “Strategic Assets”
Author: Lindsay Renick Mayer

The nonpartisan Center for Responsive Politics has calculated that more than 151 members of Congress have up to $195 million invested in major defense contractors that are earning profits from the US military occupations in Iraq and Afghanistan.

When General David Petraeus, the top US military officer in Iraq, went to Capitol Hill to brief Congress in April of 2008, he was addressing lawmakers who had a lot more than just a political stake in the Iraq occupation. Along with their colleagues in the House and Senate, the politicians who got a status report from the general and the US ambassador to Iraq had millions of dollars of their own money invested in companies doing business with the Department of Defense (DoD).

In 2006, the investment portfolios of 151 current members—more than a quarter of Congress—had between $78.7 million and $195.5 million invested in companies that received major defense contracts (over $5 million). The portfolios include holdings in companies paid billions of dollars each month to support America’s military. These companies provided almost everything the military uses, from aircraft and weapons to medical supplies and soft drinks.

Lawmakers with the most money invested in companies with DoD contracts include Sen. John Kerry (D-Mass), with up to $38,209,020; Rep. Rodney Frelinghuysen (R-NJ), with $49,140,000; Rep. Robin Hayes (R-NC), with $37,105,000; Rep. James Sensenbrenner Jr. (R-Wis), with $7,612,653; Rep. Jane Harman (D-Calif), with $6,260,000; Rep. Fred Upton (R-Mich), with $8,360,000; Sen. Jay Rockefeller (D-WVa), with $2,000,002; Rep. Tom Petri (R-Wis), with $5,800,000; Rep. Kenny Ewell Marchant (R-Texas), with $1,163,231; and Rep. John Carter (R-Texas), with up to $5,000,000.

Forty-seven members of Congress (or 9 percent of all members of the House and Senate) in 2006 were invested in companies that are primarily in the defense sector. The average share price of these corporations today is nearly twice what it was in 2004. Lawmakers’ investments in these contracting firms yielded them between $15.8 million and $62 million in income between 2004 and 2006, through dividends, capital gains, royalties and interest, the Center found.

Companies with congressional investors received more than $275.6 billion from the government in 2006. The minimum value of Congress members’ personal investments in defense contracting firms increased 5 percent from 2004 to 2006, but because lawmakers are only required to report their assets in broad ranges, the value of these investments could have risen as much as 160 percent—or even dropped 51 percent.

Senator John Kerry (D-Mass.) and House Representative James Sensenbrenner (R-Wis.), two of Congress’s wealthiest members, were among the lawmakers who earned the most from their investments in defense contractors between 2004 and 2006, with Sensenbrenner making at least $3.2 million and Kerry reaping at least $2.6 million. The Senate Foreign Relations and Armed Services committees both have members who are major investors in Defense companies. Chairs of other defense-related committees are similarly invested. Sen. Joe Lieberman (I-Conn.), chairman of the Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee, had at least $51,000 invested in defense companies in 2006. Rep. Howard Berman (D-Calif.), who heads the House Foreign Affairs Committee, had at least $30,000 invested in defense companies.

As the military operations in Iraq and Afghanistan have expanded and transformed, so too has the need for goods and services that extend beyond helicopters, armored vehicles and guns. Giant corporations outside of the defense sector, such as Pepsico, IBM, Microsoft and Johnson & Johnson, have received defense contracts and are all popular investments for both members of Congress and the general public.

Update by Lindsay Renick Mayer

When we sat down to write this story, we had in mind a few of the obvious war contractors: Boeing, Lockheed Martin, General Dynamics, and so on. But when we finished, we had a story about the fact that nearly every lawmaker was invested in war contractors because the scope of the war had grown to the point that otherwise unlikely suspects, such as Pepsi and Johnson & Johnson, were involved.
This meant that not only was it difficult for lawmakers to avoid having such investments, it was equally hard for any member of the public with a diverse blue-chip portfolio to steer clear of them.

Members of the public, however, weren’t making decisions about defense legislation that could affect the value of those investments. Lawmakers continue to do so, of course, and continue to hold on to these investments. In 2007, their defense-related assets were worth between $5.3 million and $11.1 million. (Because lawmakers report the value of their investments in ranges, it’s impossible to calculate their exact worth.) The 2008 personal financial disclosure reports are also now available on at

Lawmakers aren’t just benefiting from the defense sector personally, but also politically. In the first three months of 2009, the defense sector gave nearly $2 million to candidates, party committees and political action committees, with 57 percent of that going to Democrats. In the 2008 election cycle, the sector gave $23.5 million. Rep. John Murtha (D-Penn.), House Defense Appropriations Subcommittee chairman, has collected more money from the sector than any other lawmaker since 1989 at $2.6 million. Murtha has gotten some heat—and a lot of attention—this year for his connections to now-defunct lobbying firm PMA Group, which the FBI is investigating for allegedly violating campaign finance laws. The firm’s clients were primarily defense companies that sought earmarks from Murtha’s subcommittee.

 Should President Obama stick to his timeline to start bringing troops home from Afghanistan, it will be interesting to watch as lawmakers decide whether to continue investing in war contractors, especially if their need (and, therefore, lucrative DoD contracts,) diminishes over the coming years.

We’ve been pleased that the mainstream press has been interested in covering lawmakers’ personal finances, in addition to their various financial connections to the defense industry. The press—including the Wall Street Journal, Washington Post, New York Times, prominent bloggers, and other watchdogs—frequently pulls data from and cites our reports, including this one. It’s important that the public understands the full relationship between lawmakers and the companies affected by their legislative votes. Only then can members of the public determine whether decisions are being made based on the merits or the money.

To read more about how lobbying, personal finances, and influence peddling are shaping legislation, keep up with CRP’s blog at

 And to do some investigating yourself, dive into our personal financial disclosure database:

Monday, October 12, 2015

How to be a Net Nerd

By Christopher Rice

Sheldon has an eidetic memory and an IQ of 187. (CBS)

Sheldon has an eidetic memory and an IQ of 187. (CBS)

It's real easy to be a net nerd. Here's some simple steps to get you started:

1.) If you've been on the internet so long that you know what Geo sites from the 80's were than you're pry a net nerd.

2.) If you belong to more than one of the following, Reddit, Instagram, Twitter, Google+, any Dating sites, if you belong to any political organizations like Anonymous, you're a net nerd.

3.) If you spend more time on the net than you do outdoors than you're pry a net nerd.

4.) If you live in your mothers basement and play video games all day, and your over sixteen years old, you're just a loser, no excuse.

5.) If criticizing everyone around you somehow makes you feel superior and better than everyone else than you're just an asshole, 'nuff said.

6.) Check your last ten internet comments and if more than half of them are negative meaning the only time that you grow any balls is when you're online, you are definitely a net nerd.

Don't fear. There is hope for you. First thing you must do is shut off your computer and go outside. No, WAIT, put on some clothes first. I don't want you getting arrested for indecent exposure. Sure, it's a big scary world out there, full of greedy, ugly people, I won't lie but don't be paralyzed by fear.

Now get dressed and get out of here. Life awaits you, it's big, it's beautiful and some times it gets messy but those are memories that one day you will cherish. Live life, it's the only one that you will ever get.

Saturday, October 10, 2015

How to be a Christian (3 easy steps)

By Christopher R Rice

Jesus Photo

1.) Have you ever seen someone cold and gave them the jacket off your back?
If someone takes your coat, give him your cloak as well; if he makes you go a mile with him, go with him two. [Mathew]
2.) Have you ever helped a widow or an orphan?
Religion that is pure and undefiled before God, the Father, is this: to visit orphans and widows in their affliction, and to keep oneself unstained from the world. James 1:27 ESV 
Learn to do good; seek justice, correct oppression; bring justice to the fatherless, plead the widow's cause. Isaiah 1:17 ESV
3.) Have you ever fed the hungry, or housed the homeless or defended the weak?
Is it not to share your bread with the hungry and bring the homeless poor into your house; when you see the naked, to cover him, and not to hide yourself from your own flesh? Isaiah 58:7 ESV
“When the Son of Man comes in his glory, and all the angels with him, then he will sit on his glorious throne. Before him will be gathered all the nations, and he will separate people one from another as a shepherd separates the sheep from the goats. And he will place the sheep on his right, but the goats on the left. Then the King will say to those on his right, ‘Come, you who are blessed by my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world. For I was hungry and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you gave me drink, I was a stranger and you welcomed me, ... Matthew 25:31-46 ESV
And the King will answer them, ‘Truly, I say to you, as you did it to one of the least of these my brothers, you did it to me.’ Matthew 25:40 ESV 

Friday, October 9, 2015

What are politicians REALLY like when (they think) no ones looking? Part 1


Paul Ben Arredondo, who for nearly two decades served as a state lawmaker and city councilman, will serve 18 months of home arrest and a total of three years’ probation under the sentence by Judge Frederick Martone in U.S. District Court in Phoenix.

Arredondo, 65, pleaded guilty to two felony counts of mail fraud under a plea agreement reached with federal prosecutors.

In the plea he admitted to taking tickets to college and professional games and tables at charity events from representatives of a fictitious development company created by the FBI beginning in February 2009. He was a councilman at the time.

The plea agreement states Arredondo in return used his clout as a Tempe, Arizona, councilman and later as a state legislator to help acquire city-owned property, divulging confidential information on tactics and sale price to pave the way for development.

Arredondo also was found to have used a scholarship fund to help pay for family members to attend Arizona education institutions without telling investors. The fund was created in his name in 2001.

Under the plea deal, the Democratic lawmaker also resigned from the state House of Representatives effective immediately. His term would have expired this month and he was not running for re-election.


GOP politician George “Chris” Ortloff had two vibrators, ”one for each minor,” along with lubricant and condoms when he was arrested at a Wolf Road motel, authorities said.

Ortloff discussed engaging in various sexual acts, he was trying to arrange with an 11-year-old.

The evil scumsack “reached a plea deal” with prosecutors. Meanwhile, he gets to stay home — house arrest, sure! — and  can only leave now and then.

Thanks, U.S. District Senior Judge Thomas J. McAvoy, for making sure this former assemblyman and parole-board member gets to hang out in the safety of his home for the next four months, and thanks to the federal  prosecutors for recommending a “reduced sentence,” and also for abruptly sticking this on the Christmas Eve court calendar, with no public notice, because who would possibly care about a 61-year-old child molester loose in their neighborhood, right?


NASSAU COUNTY, FL — A former political and community leader was arrested after an undercover sex sting.  Former Nassau County Commission candidate Keith Sawyer was arrested and booked in jail. Sawyer had once served on the Executive Committee for the county’s Democratic National Party. Deputies received a tip from someone, saying Sawyer was interested in having sex with an underage girl. “The sheriff’s office used the informant and made a recorded phone call to Sawyer at which time Sawyer did agree to provide drugs and money in exchange for sex with a 15-year-old girl,” Assistant Chief Hank Martinez told GS. Deputies arrested Sawyer when he showed up at a Comfort Inn in Yulee. They say he came expecting to meet a 15-year-old girl and her friend for sex. At the time of his arrest, deputies say Sawyer had several hundred dollars in cash but no drugs. “It is very shocking to me in Nassau County that we would have a politician act this way,” Martinez said. GS spoke to Sawyer’s ex-wife, who didn’t want us to use her name. She said she is humiliated because they have two children together. Sawyer’s son and daughter are both in their twenties. “I should’ve  expected this,” Sawyer’s ex-wife said. “I believe it’s true.” Sawyer posted $50,000 bail. He is charged with solicitation of a minor, lewd and lascivious battery and lewd and lascivious conduct.

ABSCAM (Feb 1980)

“…he was just an unbelievable crook. He had no fear,” said an FBI agent. According to surveillance tapes of the meeting with Camden Democratic Mayor Angelo Errichetti, the South Jersey politician made it clear he could deliver. “I’ll give you Atlantic City,” he said. “Without me, you do nothing.” He claimed he had influence with the state’s Casino Control Commission and its vice chairman, his good friend Kenneth N. MacDonald.

FBI agent Good says they gave him cash and he walked away with it.

“The politicians were just unbelievably unethical and ruthless,” he says.

Errichetti was charged later with promising to seek to obtain a casino license for Abdul Enterprises in return for an immediate payment of $25,000 and a total payment of $400,000.

The approach to Errichetti shifted Abscam into a major political corruption investigation, using the mayor as the critical go-between to even bigger fish that ran all the way to Capitol Hill. At one meeting with Weinberg and the agents, Errichetti said he knew congressmen willing to take bribes. The names of Raymond F. Lederer and Michael Myers, both of Philadelphia, would later come up.

And the list quickly grew. There was Rep. Frank Thompson Jr. of Trenton, a tall, silver-haired man who had served in Congress since 1955 and had been a political ally of John F. Kennedy. Thompson served as chairman of the powerful House Administration Committee. Democratic Congressmen John M. Murphy of Staten Island and John Jenrette of South Carolina, along with Republican Richard Kelly of Florida. And Senator Harrison A. Williams of New Jersey.

The FBI arranged meetings at airports, in a rented home in Washington, in Atlantic City hotel rooms, offices on Long Island and in Florida. They arranged for chartered jets, limos and parties. The team later even acquired a yacht, seized by U.S. Customs in a drug bust, to hold parties with politicians. The 65-foot Cheoy Lee motor yacht, decked in teak, was fitted with video and audio surveillance gear that could pick up and record conversations anywhere on board.

“Tony (DeVito, played by Amoroso) loved that boat,” says Weinberg. “When it came time to name it, he said, ‘I’m left-handed. Let’s call it Left Hand.’ I told him, ‘Tony, left hand means the Mafia.’ He put it on anyway.”

The script for most was remarkably similar. When Lederer, a Democrat from Philadelphia first elected to Congress in 1976, knocked on the door of room 717 of the Hilton Inn at Kennedy International Airport on a Tuesday evening, Errichetti was there waiting for him with Weinberg, and other undercover FBI agents posing as representatives of the fictitious sheik. The meeting was videotaped. It was explained that the sheik was looking for a sponsor in case he needed help getting into the country one day.

Amoroso explained later that he came up with the immigration ruse after reading a newspaper story about possible deportation problems facing deposed Nicaragua dictator Anastasio Somoza.

“I understand you can introduce legislation,” said DeVito, the conversation recorded and later played back before a federal jury.

“Right, a bill. Private bill,” agreed Lederer. “Sure.”

The congressman left the hotel with a brown bag containing $50,000 in cash. “Spend it well,” DeVito told him.

Michael “Ozzie” Myers, a former longshoreman with a vocabulary to match, brought one of the most memorable quotes to the sting operation when the issue of special legislation was introduced.

“I’m gonna tell you something real simple and short: Money talks in this business and bullshit walks. And it works the same way down in Washington,” he said. Before he left, he too, was given an envelope containing $50,000 in $100 bills.

DeVito again repeated his signature line. “Spend it well,” the undercover agent said.

Harrison A. Williams was considered the biggest prize of the FBI investigation. A long-time member of Congress who served more than two decades in the U.S. Senate, Williams was a liberal Democrat known as a tough legislator and champion of organized labor and social welfare programs who authored federal laws protecting pension rights and the first law providing mass transportation assistance to states. Known as “Pete” to his friends, Williams was low-key with a ready smile who served as a Navy pilot in World War II and later graduated from Columbia Law School.

But the FBI had learned Williams had a hidden interest in a titanium mining venture in Piney River, Va., and close associates of the senator were informed that Sheik Habib was willing to lend $100 million in exchange for using his influence to obtain government contracts for the mine’s output.

The subsequent meeting produced one of the most spellbinding images of the investigation, when surveillance video was presented at the trial of the senator.
The “sheik” was played by Richard Farhart, an FBI agent brought in from the Ohio office, who wore an Arab headdress and a suit, but said little during his meetings with Williams. Also there was Errichetti.

“You know what you could do and what not,” DeVito told him. “Based on that, I’ve explained it to the sheik and this is what we’ve really based our strength on, the strength that you have.”

Williams turned to the sheik. “If this can be put together, in my position with, within the government here, which goes back decades, and knowing as I do the people that make the decisions, with, when we’ve got it together, we move.”

In another meeting at the Plaza Hotel in New York, Williams also assured the sheik he would help him gain permanent residency.

“You can leave with my assurance that I will do those things that will, will bring you on for the consideration of permanency,” he said.

Thursday, October 8, 2015

How to Plan a 'John' Sting

Gerry Long served with the Savannah-Chatham (Ga.) Metropolitan Police Department for more than 30 years, retiring in 2011 as a deputy chief.

Police article on how to set up prostitution sting: Attacking prostitution in a certain neighborhood or industrial strip usually involves undercover (UC) officers attempting to solicit street-walkers and placing them in steel bracelets. However, a "john" sting can be another effective way to combat the problem.

When planning these operations, your vice officers must develop a strategy that considers the safety of the officers as its primary component. In a two-part blog, we'll explore the operational aspects of john stings for the mostly female, and often less experienced, undercover officers who enforce these laws. In this first part, we'll look at operational considerations. In the second part, we’ll focus on safety tips for the undercover officer.

Savvy street-walkers often are familiar with how undercover officers approach them, and know the legal limits of an officer to ensnare them. The johns who purchase their services may not be as savvy, but can be prone to violent outbursts that imperil their target—the undercover officer.

Let's consider steps that can be implemented to establish the safest environment for the UC.

You must first establish who will be responsible for which parts of the operation. At this initial stage, the undercover operative is a small component of planning. There must be surveillance officers to monitor the UC and other undercover officers to play the role of approaching clients. Assign the task of setting up audio and video surveillance to technical-oriented officers, who can also monitor the UCs for the client description, take-down signals, and established distress signals. Designate a take-down team to handle the hands-on arrest, processing, and towing of vehicles.

You'll also assign investigators to handle evidence submissions and interviews.

Information gathered from the prostitutes and clients can lead to bigger leads that could solve other crimes in the area. Who will get the sought-after assignment of driving the marked unit and prisoner transport vehicle?

Using marked units helps clearly identify the take-down team members as police officers rather than a robbery crew. When the take down occurs, it can be hard for officers to stay in their roles, so the supervisor has the chore of keeping everybody on task. I've been involved in vice operations that went so fast and furious that one client was being escorted around the corner in handcuffs while another began engaging the UC in conversation. The UC shouldn't be left out in the cold because everyone took off after the runner. Set up each team, assign their responsibilities at a briefing, and stay on top of them throughout the operation.

Next, consider the location of the sting, including the geography and traffic patterns. Because you pick the site for the UC operation, you retain control. By watching the area prior to establishing the plan, you can identify the most-used approach and exits for the prostitutes and clients. Set up the site where cover officers can best observe the UCs. Officers should also be positioned to identify approaching johns with a description and vehicle information. This may be two teams or one person, as long as the sight line allows officers to see the transactions. Pick one side of the road where the UCs will operate and stick with it.

If the operation simulates an escort or call-girl business, the site will be a hotel room or UC apartment. These locations afford you time to establish effective audio and video capabilities. Adjoining rooms in a hotel allow arresting officers to enter the room through a common door without alerting other hotel occupants or passersby.

If the motel operator is complicit in the prostitution, it will be more difficult to set up the room and operation. In that case, slowly move in and set up the operation to lower suspicion. To deal with a complicit motel operator, bring charges of pimping or conspiracy and work with your municipal regulators to shut the motel down. The only concern or problem from setting up a prostitution sting would be complaints from the neighbors that could easily be handled with a telephone call after the operation ends. You want to establish those connections and "eyes and ears" within the community.

Obviously, the UC has the most important role in the sting and must reel the clients into a conversation that's sufficient to prosecute them for solicitation. Most operations of this type use newer officers with less experience, so it’s imperative that you outline the law and the key points needed in a conversation to make the case.

Lastly, you must notify the on-duty supervisor or commander. This may sound counterintuitive for an undercover operation, but when things go south or you need assistance from the uniforms, some early diplomacy will go a long way. Hours of preparation can be for naught if on-duty officers decide the night of your operation will be the night they work "the strip." A trusted on-duty supervisor is a fantastic resource to avoid operational conflict and ensure he or she can assist when needed.

Source: PoliceMag

Mental health and the Man timeline

This summary is courtesy of the Hogg Foundation at the University of Texas at Austin:

1700 – A series of local mental health acts that created local responsibility for the mentally ill.

1800 — State policies began an era of rapid development of state hospitals, with 84 percent of the states following this trend. Between 1800-1850 over 300 state hospitals were constructed.

1853 — President Franklin Pierce vetoed a bill that would have involved the federal government in the provision of mental health care at the state level.

1930 – Federal statute creating a division of mental health within the Public Health Service. This division was the forerunner of the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH).

1946 – Congress passed legislation (PL 79-487) creating NIMH and asked each state to designate a single state agency to be responsible for mental health care. This law was in response to the high proportion of males found mentally unfit to serve in WWII and to the number of psychiatric causalities.

1947 – The Supreme Court ruled that national health insurance was constitutional.

1955 – Congress passed legislation (PL 84-142) creating the President’s Commission on Mental Illness. The Commission identified 600,000 individuals in state hospitals in the United States in poor conditions in state hospitals. The report of the Commission (Action for Mental Health) became the basis for the eventual development of the community mental health movement and law.

1963 – Congress passed and President John F. Kennedy signed (PL 88-164), the community mental health centers construction act, providing federal money to construct mental health centers that provided the five essential services. The Act bypassed the states and gave money directly to non-profit groups to provide alternative services to the state mental hospitals.

1964 – Congress passed amendments to the Social Security Act creating Medicaid and Medicare that provided graduated federal payment to the states to provide medical and inpatient psychiatric care outside state hospitals for the poor and aged. This Act enabled private psychiatric hospitals and general hospitals with psychiatric units, but not community mental health centers, to be paid for the inpatient care that they provided to the mentally ill.

1973 – Congress passed legislation (PL 93-45) extending the 1963 legislation for an additional year. Community mental health legislation and funding were strongly opposed by President Nixon and efforts were made by his administration to eliminate this legislation.

1980 – Congress proposed new legislation (PL 96-398) called the community mental health systems act (crafted by Ted Kennedy), but the program was ended by newly-elected President Ronald Reagan. This action ended the federal community mental health centers program and its funding.

1980 – Congress passed legislation (PL 96-416) tile Civil Rights of Institutionalized Persons Act (CRIPA) allowing the Justice Department to sue state governments if they violate the civil rights of the mentally ill or mentally retarded in their state hospitals (the Act was focused originally on prisons).

1981 – Congress passed legislation (PL 97-35) sought by Reagan, titled the Omnibus Reconciliation Act of 1981 that shifted funds to the states vial block grants. States had the option of using their funds to continue to support mental health centers.

1987 – Congress passed new legislation (PL 99-319) developing rules for the protection and advocacy for the mentally ill and offered dollars to the states to set up human rights agencies and regulations to insure rights of the mentally disabled.

1987 – Congress passed new legislation (PL 99-660) requiring that for states to receive block grant monies for mental health and substance abuse, the states had to develop plans for how they would care for the mentally ill who were released from state hospitals and the staff who needed to be retrained.

1987 – Congress passed new legislation (PL 100-77) called the Stewart B. McKinney Homeless Assistance Act, to assist the states in providing housing for the homeless who are mentally ill.

1989 – Congress passed legislation (PL 100-336) titled the Americans with Disabilities Act, designed to prohibit discrimination against individuals with physical or mental disabilities.

1990 – Newly elected President Clinton proposes a national health reform act that will provide mental health and substance abuse services in the coverage (Hillary Rodham-Clinton was chairperson).

1992 – A newly elected Republican congress endorses managed care as the policy for controlling costs and services in health care in the United States.

Currently LA County jail has the largest mental health facility in the US.

Tuesday, October 6, 2015

How to have perfectly healthy teeth without brushing

Modern dental hygiene would have been quite unnecessary for ancient Romans living in Pompeii, as research has revealed that they had impressively healthy teeth.

Scientists appointed by the Archaeological Superintendence of Pompeii have used CAT scans to examine 30 Pompeii inhabitants who were preserved in hardened ash after Mount Vesuvius erupted in AD 79. The group, headed by radiologist Giovanni Babino, released photos of their work on Sept. 29, and revealed in a press conference that the ancient Romans had perfect teeth and “no immediate discernible need for dentists,” according news agency Agenzia Giornalistica Italia.

Though Pompeii citizens never used toothbrushes or toothpaste, they had healthy teeth thanks to their low-sugar diet. Massimo Osanna, superintendent of the World Heritage-listed site, said their diet was “balanced and healthy, similar to what we now call the Mediterranean diet,” according to The Telegraph.

“The inhabitants of Pompeii ate a lot of fruit and vegetables but very little sugar,” said orthodontist Elisa Vanacore, who oversaw the examination of the teeth. “They ate better than we did and have really good teeth.”

Vanacore added that Pompeii citizens’ teeth would have benefitted from high levels of fluorine in the air and water near the volcano.

Studying teeth could help determine the age of the bodies examined and reveal more details about life in Pompeii. The scientists are hoping to analyze 86 plaster casts in total from Pompeii, and the research should ultimately uncover the age, sex, diet, diseases and social classes of the preserved Pompeii citizens.

But though the ancient Romans’ healthy teeth may come as a surprise, they aren’t the only historical group who are believed to have had better teeth than people today.

Despite the popular belief that the Tudors had poor dental hygiene (a stereotype largely owed to Queen Elizabeth I, who indeed had rotting teeth), most early Tudors had remarkably healthy teeth—once again because of the lack of sugar in their diet. When sugar production became common in Spain, France and Holland during the 1600s, the price dropped and sugar became a common feature of many Europeans’ diets.