Disturbing Video Shows Cops Kill Mentally Ill Unarmed Man As He Walked Toward Them

mentally illmentally ill

Millville, NJ — Disturbing dashcam footage of police shooting and killing an unarmed mentally ill man was released this week. The video has sparked debate because the man was unarmed, however, he was holding an “unidentified object” in his hands when police opened fire.

The dashcam video is from the police cruiser belonging to Millville police officer Colt Gibson. On January 22, Gibson and several other officers responded to the intersection of North High and McNeal streets. Officers were responding to 911 calls from the man they would kill on arrival, Edward C. Gandy Jr.

Gandy was apparently attempting suicide by cop and when officers arrived, they quickly obliged.

As the Daily Journal reports:

The video begins about 10:48 a.m. with the cruiser moving north on North High Street until it reaches a point just south of the McNeal Street intersection. Gibson is off camera until after shots are fired.

As the video shows, Gandy is seen pointing an object at the officers and then putting his hands behind his back. The entire time, police are yelling at him to stop and put his hands up, but Gandy does not respond.

A few seconds after Gandy places his hands behind his back, he is shot.

Catherine Gandy, the mother of Edward Gandy, told The Daily Journal last month that her son recently was released from a mental health crisis center and had been “suicidal” since a change in his prescription medication.

According to police, Gandy called 911 telling them that he was armed with a loaded firearm and was “feeling homicidal.”

Although Gandy was unarmed, he presented a threat by pointing an object at the officers which they may or may not have been able to determine was a gun.

Below is the graphic footage. Warning, it may be disturbing to some viewers.

Sadly, this mentally ill man in need of medical treatment was killed in a manner in which dozens of people seek out every year. It even has a name: the term suicide by cop was coined in 1983 by a police officer­–turned–suicide hotline operator.

“As a cop, I knew of a number of cases where it appeared that people had actually forced police officers to shoot them,” Dr. Karl Harris explained to the New York Times in 1998. “In the suicide business I saw all the different ways people attempted suicide, and it occurred to me that maybe some people were actually forcing cops to shoot them because they wanted to die.”

While there is no clear data on how many people attempt suicide by cop every year, Police One keeps an unofficial count on it, indicating that it is a serious problem. When people know cops will kill them, it may be time for new training.

As Rebecca Leber noted in the New Republic, police training in these scenarios is heavily lacking. “In practice, police are frequently the first responders to mental health crises—and they are frequently unprepared to handle them. Police training typically emphasizes asserting command and authority. As the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) has pointed out that’s precisely the wrong approach to take with somebody who has mental illness, because it can disorient that person and encourage him or her to strike out.”

“Traditional law enforcement tactics are rooted in logic, in reasoning – and in issuing commands for someone to comply so that we can make the situation safe right now by taking a person into custody,” said Douglas County Police Capt. Attila Denes, who’s worked to improve police interaction with the mentally ill, according to an Al Jazeera report. “But barking orders at a person with serious mental illness doesn’t work.”

Indeed, as the above video illustrates, it certainly does not work.

Source Article from http://thefreethoughtproject.com/disturbing-video-shows-cops-kill-unarmed-man-walked-toward/

Groundbreaking Study Shows Shielding EMF Improves Autoimmune Disease



Concerns about electromagnetic fields (EMF) are branded pseudoscientific conspiracy theories and relegated to the realm of tin-hat wearing quackery. However, a recent publication in the peer-reviewed journal Immunologic Research entitled “Electrosmog and Autoimmune Disease,” sheds new light on the validity of concerns about this so-called electrosmog with which we are constantly inundated.

Although we encounter natural microwave electromagnetic radiation in the form of cosmic radiation from outer space, the aurora borealis, and thunderstorms, the vast majority of electrosmog that we encounter is largely manmade (1). These atmospheric phenomena, however, emit electromagnetic radiation at lower radio frequencies and are negligibly weak in comparison to manmade sources, which have increased exponentially due to the emergence of television, cellular phone technologies, and WiFI, all of which utilize microwave frequency bands (1).

According to researchers Marshall and Heil (2017), for instance, “The recent release of WiGig and anti-collision vehicle radars in the 60 GHz region embody a 1000-fold increase in frequency, and photon energy, over the exposures mankind experienced up until the 1950s” (1).

How Electrosmog Interfaces with the Bioelectromagnetic Body

It is intuitive that electrosmog would interact with human biology, since human physiology operates in part via electromagnetic fields. Apart from physical information superhighways such as the blood, nervous, and lymphatic systems, the body uses electromagnetic forms of energy transmission and communication which are several orders of magnitude faster than chemical diffusion (2).

Called biophotonic emission (BPE), these quanta of electromagnetic energy have a visibility one thousand times lower than the sensitivity of our naked eye and are quintessential to cellular metabolism and to the powering of our energy-intensive nervous and immune systems (3). Harbored within our genetic material, biophotonsserve as a mode of instantaneous communication from one body part to another and to the extraneous world (4) and their emission is influenced by our global state of health (5). Research even suggests that mental intention and the fabric of our consciousnessis mediated by these quantum of light, which operate as highly coherent frequencies and generate an ordered flux of photons (4).

Thus, both the stuff of consciousness and the functioning of our cellular energetics is premised upon electromagnetism, which may be susceptible to distortion by electrosmog. Curtis and Hurtak describe the electromagnetic body as both “an entire body distinct from the chemical body that interpenetrates it” and “a light circulatory system operating on an energetic level in a markedly different manner from that of its molecular counterparts” (2). That there is “an incredible amount of activity at levels of magnification or scale that span more than two-thirds of the 73 known octaves of the electromagnetic spectrum” (6) in the human body is emblematic of our vulnerability to electromagnetic disturbances.

Potential Immune Disturbances due to Electrosmog Exposure

Although current public health laws are predicated on effects of short-term exposure, research suggests that dosage and repetitive exposures likely influence health risk of electrosmog (7). Two thirds of studies examined report ecological effects of electromagnetic radiation, and researchers state that, “current evidence indicates that chronic exposure to electromagnetic radiation, at levels that are found in the environment, may particularly affect the immune, nervous, cardiovascular and reproductive systems” (7).

Although the conventional mantra is that no harm is incurred from low-energy radio waves, low-level exposures to ionizing radiation are known to manifest profound effects upon human physiology (1). Ionizing radiation exposure, which occurs secondary to nuclear energy accidents, for example, produces immunosuppression, so much so that some scientists have even suggested radon exposure as a therapeutic treatment for rheumatoid arthritis due to its inhibition of inflammatory immune messengers such as the adipokine visfatin (8).

There is, however, often a substantial lag time between exposure and the materialization of symptomatology (1). The detriment to immune defense “often does not become apparent until the body catastrophically fails to overcome an acute challenge” (1). In addition, new science is overturning the previous assumption that immunosuppressive effects are exclusive to ionizing radiation exposure.

A research group headed by Lushinov, for example, found that repeated exposures to low-level non-ionizing electromagnetic radiation impaired the immune response in mice, negatively influencing immunogenesis, or the ability of the immune response to respond to an immune-provocating antigenic substance (9). The exposure to low-intensity electromagnetic radiation negatively influenced thymic and splenic cellularity, causing a statistically significant decrease in the immune cells generated by these lymphoid organs (9). The immunocompetence of the Aegean wall lizard was also significantly reduced upon daily exposure to radiofrequency resembling the amount of electrosmog emitted from cordless phones (10).

Moreover, Gapeev and colleagues (2006) elucidated that exposure to low-intensity non-ionizing electromagnetic waves exerted equivalent immunosuppressive effects to a single dose of the nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID) diclofenac (11). In another experiment, exposure to low-intensity electromagnetic radiation reduce the footpad edema and local hyperthermia, also known as swelling and heat, that accompanied injection of zymosan, an agent that induces acute inflammation (12). This constitutes evidence that electrosmog exposure may impair the normal immune response to potential threats.

Human Proteins are Responsive to Electromagnetic Waves

Biomolecules, which are constantly undergoing molecular collisions and interacting on the scale of picoseconds, are subject to forces exerted by incident electromagnetic fields (1). According to researchers Marshall and Heil, “It seems likely that signals a million times lower than those currently being used in research may be sufficient to elicit a tangible change in human biology” (1).

Induction of Stress Proteins

Electrosmog at both an extremely low-frequency (ELF) or in the radio frequency (RF) range has been found to stimulate a cellular stress response, leading to expression of stress response genes including heat shock protein 70 (HSP70) (13). As a consequence, there is increased production of highly conserved stress proteins, which serve as chaperones by refolding and repairing damaged proteins (13). Heat shock proteins have likewise been observed to up-regulate an immune response, “transferring antigenic peptides to the class I and class II molecules of the major histocompatibility complexes” as well as increasing activity of a class of immune cells which perpetuate an immune reaction, such as macrophages and dendritic cells (14).

Aberrant Anti-Microbial Response

In addition, the function of another human protein, lysozyme, has been shown to be disrupted by electromagnetic radiation (15). Also called muramidase, lysozyme is an antimicrobial enzyme liberated from cytoplasmic granules of immune cells such as granulocytes and macrophages (16). Contained in human secretions such as mucus, tears, saliva, and breast milk, this bacteriolytic element degrades glycosidic bonds in peptidoglycan, a molecule prominent in the cell walls of gram-positive bacteria (17).

Lysozyme is a major contributor to bactericidal activity, facilitating elimination of inhaled airborne microorganisms to prevent their colonization in the respiratory passages, which would interfere with sterile gas exchange (17). Studies have indicated that depletion of lysozyme reduces bacteria-killing ability of human airway sections by approximately fifty percent (18). Animal studies also highlight how lysozyme is especially important in host pulmonary defense, since, “Increased concentration of lysozyme in the airspaces of transgenic mice enhanced bacterial killing whereas lysozyme deficiency resulted in increased bacterial burden and morbidity” (17).

Turton and colleagues (2014) published a study in Nature Communications showing that non-ionizing terahertz electromagnetic radiation altered the binding of lysolyme to its ligand, triacetylchitotriose, which in turn would affect the biological function of lysozyme (15). Although this represents a much higher frequency than normal background electrosmog, the implications are that human immune defenses against pathogen invasion and virulence may be adversely affected due to repeated and cumulative exposures to electrosmog (15).

Derangements in Vitamin D Pathways

Research shows that Vitamin D Receptor (VDR) pathways are susceptible to interference by electrosmog (1). Functionality of the vitamin D receptor, a transcription factor that translocates to the nucleus and influences gene expression when bound to vitamin D, is fundamental for immunomodulation. The cascade of effects that occur upon vitamin D binding to its receptor reinforce gut barrier integrity, establish oral tolerance, and suppress autoimmune responses by enabling the immune system to differentiate self from non-self.

According to researchers, the shape of the VDR molecule transforms with electrosmog exposure within the frequency range of WiFi routers: “Groups of hundreds of atoms which form the helical “backbone” of the VDR…shift together at the lower frequencies present in electrosmog” (1). Sophisticated molecular dynamics software, which illustrates the lock-and-key interaction between the vitamin D receptor and its native ligand, 1,25-dihydroxyvitamin-D (1,25-D), have shown that so-called Lorentz forces act upon charged oxygen atoms in carboxyl groups of the vitamin D receptor (1). These Lorentz forces may either promote or hinder activation of the vitamin D receptor, depending on both the frequency of the “molecular interactions, and that of the impinging electromagnetic waves” (1).

Electrosmog Affects Human Brain Activity and Behavior

As far back as 1987, Bise published a pilot study wherein electrosmog exposure at levels dramatically lower than that observed in urban areas elicited transient changes in human brain waves and behavior (19). He reports, “Constructive and destructive interference patterns from standing waves within the skull possibly interact with the bioelectric generators in the brain, since electroencephalogram wave amplitudes and frequencies increased or decreased respectively at different radio wavelengths” (19).

What’s more, the literature reveals that neuroimaging and electroencephalography studies demonstrate enhanced cortical excitability with EMF exposure, particularly in the front-temporal regions, which is paradoxically correlated with faster reaction times, but may also interfere with sleep (20).

Alarmingly, the patterns observed in human electroencephalograms (EEG) was altered by wave amplitudes as low as -100 dBm (19). Bise was able to induce an immediate frontal headache at a level of -60 dBm (19). Unfortunately, barring use of a Faraday cage, these experiments are impossible to replicate since electrosmog background levels in cities are now 100,000 times stronger at -50 dBm (19).

Silver-Threaded EMF-Blocking Caps Improve Autoimmune Disease

In a recent case series, patients wore shielding clothing and tenting consisting of silver-coated polyester threads interspersed with bamboo fibers that were partially capable of blocking penetration of microwave electrosmog (1). Due to anecdotal testimonies of improvement, researchers decided to distribute standardized garments that would shield the brain and brain stem in order to systematically analyze the results (1).

In this study, 64 patients with assorted autoimmune diagnoses such as systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE)rheumatoid arthritis (RA)multiple sclerosis (MS)Sjogren’s syndrome, and celiac disease, many of whom were disabled and house-bound, were recruited (1). Subjects wore the silver-threaded cap for four hours at night and for four hours during the day, and patient-reported outcomes were collected (1). Impressively, 90% of patients indicated a “definite” or “strong” change in their symptomatology, which is at variance with the 3% of the population that is estimated to be sensitive to electrosmog (1).

Some researchers have attributed this so-called electro-hypersensitivity (EHS) or idiopathic environmental intolerance (IEI) to the nocebo effect. However, Dieudonné explores the possibility of a psychosomatic mechanism in the journal Bioelectromagnetics, and concludes, “Overall, symptoms appear before subjects start questioning effects of EMF on their health, which is not consistent with the hypothesis that IEI-EMF originates from nocebo responses to perceived EMF” (21).

In this groundbreaking study, it is also telling that the researchers found the therapeutic efficacy of the silver-coated caps to be so theoretically plausible that they decided the idea of using a control group was unethical. These authors concluded that autoimmune patients exhibit a pronounced susceptibility to electrosmog at levels normally encountered in home and occupational environments, and hypothesized that the exposure may be contributing to their disease etiology (1).

Electrosmog and Mitochondrial Dysfunction

Because electric fields result from voltage differences, whereas magnetic fields from the flow of electric current, EMFs may be capable of disrupting the finely orchestrated proton gradient and flow of electrons within the inner mitochondrial membrane upon which the process of oxidative phosphorylation is contingent (13). Oxygen-dependent aerobic respiration, which relies upon oxidative phosphorylation, is the process that drives production of the cellular energy currency adenosine triphosphate (ATP) in our cellular energy factories, the mitochondria.

These organelles are fundamental to every energy-dependent process in the body but especially quintessential for the energy-demanding nervous system. Thus, EMF-mediated changes in mitochondrial function may affect cognition and even perpetuate development of neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s in which mitochondrial dysfunction has been demonstrated. In fact, EMF-induced disruption of mitochondria may play a role in many diseases in which mitochondrial collapse is implicated, including psychiatric disordersautoimmune diseasesmigraine headachesataxiastrokediabetes, heart disease, neuropathic pain, chronic fatigue syndrome, fibromyalgia, and liver disease (22, 23).

It has also been proposed that EMFs can interact directly with electrons in DNA, so it is not a stretch that EMFs could interact with the electron transport chain (ETC) in mitochondria (24). This concept is supported by a study where pulsed electromagnetic radiation (EMR) resulted in alterations in the ETC, leading to adverse metabolic changes, cellular hypoxia, and increased generation of oxidative stress inducing free radicals such as the superoxide anion (25).

Electrosmog and Cancer

Although the undoubtedly industry-influenced mainstream consensus is that EMFs do not play a role in the development of childhood cancers, “Kheifets and Shimkhada [2005] stated that epidemiologic studies of ELF-EMFs and childhood leukemia are difficult to design, conduct, and interpret due to the fact that EMFs are imperceptible, ubiquitous, have multiple sources, and can vary greatly over time and short distances” (13). Also, in an animal study, a correlation between ELF-EMF radiation and development of malignant tumors, specifically gliomas and schwannomas of the heart, was discovered (26).

These findings led the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) to revise their criteria for EMF exposure in children, and include recommendations such as using hands-free and wired headsets, holding the phone away from the head, limiting television watching, and texting when possible (13). Currently, a 14-country study called MOBI-Kids is being conducted to examine the carcinogenic effects of RF-EMFs from mobile telephones on the central nervous system in children and adolescents (27).

Further upstream, electrosmog has also been shown to induce DNA strand breakages, such that “Any extensive damage or changes to DNA that need repair may increase the risk of developing cancerous cells” (13). Studies also suggest that electrosmog causes genome-wide alterations in methylation (28), or the attachment of one-carbon tags to DNA sequences which modulate gene expression, affecting everything from neurotransmitter production to detoxification.

Mitigating Electrosmog Exposure

Although more data is needed, the science warrants exercising the precautionary principle and taking simple steps to minimize EMF exposure. To remediate electrosmog, renowned doctor Dietrich Klinghardt recommends removing cordless phones from the house, turning off WiFi, switching off fuses at night, considering an EMF-reducing sleep sanctuary or canopy, and grounding.

Moreover, fundamental to neutralizing the toxic effects of electrosmog is spending time in nature and grounding in order to scavenge free radicals and engender antioxidant effects. Direct contact with the surface of the earth precipitates an influx of electrons, which are absorbed and distributed throughout the ground substance of extracellular tissue as well as intracellular biopolymers, neutralizing oxidative stress in the body (29).

Studies have elucidated that grounding decreases the voltage imposed on the body by a factor of seventy upon exposure to alternating current (AC) electric potential (30). This transfer of electrons that occurs as a result of grounding, therefore, can minimize electrosmog-induced derangements in the electrical activities of our bodies, which is meaningful since researchers state that, “There is no question that the body reacts to the presence of environmental electric fields” (30).


References

1. Marshall, T.G., & Heil, T.J.R. (2017). Electrosmog and autoimmune disease. Immunology Research.

2. Curtis, B.D., & Hurtak, J.J. (2004). Consciousness and quantum information processing: Uncovering the foundation for a medicine of light. The Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine, 10(1), 27-39.

3. Schwabl, Herbert, and Herbert Klima. “Spontaneous Ultraweak Photon Emission from Biological Systems and the Endogenous Light Field.” Forschende Komplementärmedizin / Research in Complementary Medicine 12, no. 2 (2005): 84-89. doi:10.1159/000083960.

4. Bonilla, E. (2008). [Evidence about the power of intention] [Article in Spanish]. Investigación Clínica 49, 4, 595-615.

5. Hossu, M., & Rupert, R. (2006). Quantum Events of Biophoton Emission Associated with Complementary and Alternative Medicine Therapies: A Descriptive Pilot Study. The Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine, 12(2),119-124. doi:10.1089/acm.2006.12.119.

6. Rosch, P.J. (2014). Bioelectromagnetic and Subtle Energy Medicine. Boca Raton: CRC Press.

7. Balmori, A. (2014). Electrosmog and species conservation. Science of the Total Environment, 496, 314-316.

8. Shreder, K. et al. (2016). Low-dose ionising radiation inhibits adipokine induced inflammation in rheumatoid arthritis. Annals of Rheumatological Disease, 75, A64. doi: 10.1136/annrheumdis-2016-209124.151.

9. Lushnikov, K.V. et al. (2001). Effect of extremely high frequency electromagnetic radiation of low intensity on parameters of humoral immunity in healthy mice. Biofizika, 46, 753–760.

10. Mina, D. et al. (2016). Immune responses of a wall lizard to whole-body exposure to radiofrequency electromagnetic radiation. International Journal of Radiation Biology, 92,162–168. doi: 10.3109/09553002.2016.1135262.

11. Gapeev, A.B. et al. (2006). Pharmacological analysis of anti-inflammatory effects of low-intensity extremely high-frequency electromagnetic radiation. Biofizika, 51, 1055–1068.

12. Gapeyev, A.B., Mikhailik, E.N., & Chemeris, N.K. (2008). Anti-inflammatory effects of low-intensity extremely high-frequency electromagnetic radiation: frequency and power dependence. Bioelectromagnetics, 29(3), 197-206.

13. Miah, T., & Kamat, D. (2017). Current understanding of the health effects of electromagnetic fields. Pediatric Annals, 46(4), e172-e174. doi: 10.3928/19382359-20170316-01.

14. Li, Z., & Srivastava, P. (2004). Heat-shock proteins. Current Protocols in Immunology, Appendix 1, Appendix 1 T.

15. Turton, D.A. et al. (2014). Terahertz underdamped vibrational motion governs protein-ligand binding in solution. Nature Communications, 5, 3999. doi: 10.1038/ncomms4999

16. Afzal Mir, M. (1977). Lysozyme: a brief review. Postgraduate Medical Journal, 53, 257-259.

17. Nash, J.A. et al. (2006). The peptidoglycan-degrading property of lysozyme is not required for bactericidal activity in vivo. Journal of Immunology, 177(1), 519-526.

18. Dajani, R. et al. (2005). Lysozyme secretion by submucosal glands protects the airway from bacterial infection. American Journal of Respiratory and Cellular Molecular Biology, 32, 548-552.

19. Bise, W. (1978). Low power radio-frequency and microwave effects on human electroencephalogram and behavior. Physiological Chemistry and Physics, 10(5), 387-398.

20. Zhang, J., Sumich, A., & Wang, G.Y., (2017). Acute effects of radiofrequency electromagnetic field emitted by mobile phone on brain function. Bioelectromagnetics, 38(5), 329-338. doi: 10.1002/bem.22052.

21. Dieudonné, M. (2016). Does electromagnetic hypersensitivity originate from nocebo responses? Indications from a qualitative study. Bioelectromagnetics, 37(1), 14-24.

22. Neustadt, J., & Pieczenik, S.R. (2008). Medication-induced mitochondrial damage and disease. Molecular Nutrition and Food Research, 52, 780-788.

23. Pieczenik, S.R., & Neustadt, J. (2007). Mitochondrial dysfunction and molecular pathways of disease. Experimental and Molecular Pathology, 83, 84-92.

24. Blank, M.M., & Goodman, R. (2009). Electromagnetic fields stress living cells. Pathophysiology, 16(2–3), 71–78. doi:10.1016/j.pathophys.2009.01.006

25. Burlaka, A., Selyuk, M., Gafurov, M., Lukin, S., Potaskalova, V., & Sidorik, E. (2014). Changes in mitochondrial functioning with electromagnetic radiation of ultra high frequency as revealed by electron paramagnetic resonance methods. International Journal of Radiation Biology, 90(5), 357-362.

26. National Toxicology Program, Public Health Services, National Institutes of Health, & US Department of Health and Human Services. (2004). NTP technical report on the toxicology and carcinogenesis studies of Elmiron (Cas No. 37319–17-8) in F344/N rats and B6C3F1 mice (Gavage Studies). National Toxicology Program Technical Report Series, 512, 7–289.

27. Sadetzki, S.S., Langer, C.E., & Bruchim, R. (2014). The MOBI-Kids study protocol: challenges in assessing childhood and adolescent exposure to electromagnetic fields from wireless telecommunication technologies and possible association with brain tumor risk. Frontiers in Public Health, 2, 124. doi:10.3389/fpubh.2014.00124

28. Liu, Y. et al. (2015). Effect of 50 Hz Extremely Low-Frequency Electromagnetic Fields on the DNA Methylation and DNA Methyltransferases in Mouse Spermatocyte-Derived Cell Line GC-2. BioMed Research International.

29. Oschman, J.L. (2009). Charge transfer in the living matrix. Journal of Bodywork and Movement Therapy, 13(3), 215-218.

30. Chevalier, G. et al. (2012). Review article: Earthing: Health Implications of Reconnecting the Human Body to the Earth’s Surface Electrons. Journal of Environmental and Public Health, 1-8.


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Disturbing Video Shows Cops Take Turns Beating a Disabled Elderly Man—In HANDCUFFS

elderlyelderly

Louisville, KY — A recent settlement paid out by the Kentucky State Police, highlights the utter importance of filming cops. A 68-year-old disabled man was accused of attacking police officers but video evidence showed the exact opposite.

The victim, Lewis Lyttle has since been paid $130,000 in taxpayer money because officers took turns kicking and punching him while he was in handcuffs. The suit was settled in October of last year, however, police have kept it secret and even lied about it.

According to WDRB, Kentucky State Police denied an open records request for a copy of the settlement on Jan. 10, saying no settlement existed and “any documents related to a possible settlement is protected by attorney-client privilege.”

However, WDRB News obtained records of the settlement from the Kentucky State Treasurer. A check to Lyttle was dated Dec. 15.

Lyttle’s attorney also confirmed the issuance of the check, noting the “matter was resolved to the satisfaction of all parties.”

Lyttle, who used to be a construction worker, was severely injured in the 90’s and left disabled which made the fact that cops allegedly saw him as a threat even more repugnant.

The incident happened in the parking lot of a hospital on Aug. 1, 2016, as more than a dozen witnesses watching in horror as cops attacked this elderly disabled man.

According to police, Lyttle did not follow orders, became combative and assaulted officers as they tried to arrest him.

However, according to 16 difference witnesses and a cellphone video of the incident, the officers were lying and Lyttle became the subject of a violent and unlawful arrest.

According to the report, on the day of the incident, Lyttle left his home in St. Charles, Virginia, to drive his neighbor to Harlan Appalachian Regional Hospital because she was having problems with chronic bronchitis.

Lyttle may have had some drinks that day but drove his neighbor in need anyway. When the elderly man was in the parking lot, someone accused him of exposing himself as he likely urinated, so police were called.

Police then responded to the elderly man using extreme prejudice. As the first video shows, Lyttle is sitting on the ground with his hands in handcuffs as Trooper Jimmy Halcomb and KSP Sgt. Rob Farley stand over him.

Without provocation, Farley reaches down and slaps the old man across the face so hard that he falls into the pavement.

The person filming from inside the building gasps after watching the abuse. But it was only just beginning.

“He had no business smacking him in the face,” one woman can be heard saying on the video.

The abuse was so bad that people watching actually thought it was fake and part of a movie being filmed nearby.

“I bet that’s part of the movie, reckon?” one witness said.

As the abuse continued, another witness pulled out their phone to record it. Although we can’t hear the exchange between Lyttle and the officers, because the person filming is inside, we can see that Lyttle is being entirely compliant and non-violent when he’s attacked again.

The officers pick Lyttle up and for some reason—likely to justify the fact that they were beating him—they uncuffed the man. However, Lyttle remained entirely compliant.

Farley then reaches toward Lyttle’s face, grabs his beard and knees the disabled man in the stomach while slamming him to the ground.

While Lyttle is on the ground, both officers begin punching and kicking him for no reason.

“They are just punching him, beating the shit out of him,” said the man recording from inside a nearby building. “Four cops for one man, and as old as he is.”

The cops then placed Lyttle back in handcuffs and arrested him on a slew of false charges.

According to WDRB,

Prosecutors dismissed the felony charges in January 2017, based on evidence that came to light after Lyttle was indicted. That evidence included the two cellphone videos of the incident and 16 sworn statements by witnesses who said Lyttle was the one assaulted.

In February 2017, eight months after the arrest, state police launched an investigation, eventually finding Farley used excessive force. He was suspended for 120 days and demoted from sergeant to trooper.

And we call this “public service” in the land of the free.

“Lewis is 68-years-old and has never had a criminal conviction for anything in his entire life. He has a good deal of health issues including 8 metal pins in his leg. The same leg that detective Miller kicked several times and stood on according to the video and several eyewitnesses. Even before he took that beating, he had a great deal of trouble just trying to walk around. When those bully KSP officers beat my Lewis, they beat up a then 67-year-old crippled man who couldn’t have hurt them even if he wanted to,” Lewis’ wife said.

 

Source Article from http://thefreethoughtproject.com/taxpayers-held-liable-elderly-man/

Students Revolt, School Goes on Lockdown, As Video Shows Cop Body Slam Teen

schoolschool

Port Orange, FL — Disturbing video was uploaded to Instagram by a student at Spruce Creek High School which shows a massive police officer grab a small student by the neck and violently throw him to the ground.

The incident was so brutal that it sparked a massive backlash by the students and the school was forced to go on lockdown as police moved in to suppress the revolt. The Volusia County Sheriff’s Office had to call in the Port Orange police who forced all students to stay in their classrooms.

“It was very crazy because all of the students were like going crazy over it, because everyone knows him because he’s pretty popular around school,” student Richard Ballard said.

“The deputy grabbed him by his neck and slammed him on the ground,” Freshman Javon Bell who witnessed the brutality said of the incident.

The student had not been violent and police only said he had thrown his backpack down and “appeared agitated.” So, the massive deputy, James Moore, moved in for the kill.

The Volusia County Sheriff’s Office said the student faced the deputy and lifted his arms in a fighting stance when the deputy grabbed him. However, in the video, the deputy is seen grabbing the student from the side before slamming him to the ground. The student did have his arms in the air, but it is unclear if this was a fight stance or just talking with his hands.

According to the report, the incident began when the 16-year-old boy got into a verbal argument with his girlfriend. When the assistant principal, Ryan Mahaney told him to go to the office, the student allegedly refused and began swearing and yelling. That is when Moore showed up.

Mahaney repeatedly asked the 16-year-old to go to the office, but he “continued to act aggressively,” Moore stated, according to the Daytona News-Journal.

After Moore threw down the 16-year-old, a 15-year-old boy became agitated and allegedly charged the deputy. However, according to reports, a school employee, Dragon Nadzam intercepted the child before he made it to the deputy.

“Unnecessary force used in that and that definitely has to be addressed. It has to be some other way to resolve an issue like that besides slamming a child,” parent Jessica Bell said.

According to the report, the student who was thrown down is facing charges for whatever crime they are saying he committed. However, as he is a child, the records for his charges are unavailable.

Perhaps this child was about to cause harm and needed to be stopped. However, how much force should be used when dealing with a 16-year-old. The move by the deputy could’ve severely injured the boy all over a temper tantrum. Also, this boy’s family will likely sue and because the officer used so much force in trying to detain the boy, the taxpayers will likely go to bat for his actions.

Whatever the reason behind the slamming of the student, what this case illustrates is the state’s tendency to resolve situations with violence. If the kid was about to get violent, he is merely a product of a society which condones the use of violence to solve problems.

Research suggests about one-third of all individuals who were abused or neglected as children will subject their children to maltreatment and will victimize others around them.

These same violent tendencies can also manifest in society as citizens witness their ostensible government role models carry out violence on a massive scale and on a daily basis. With our leaders and law enforcement—acting as role models—waging violence overseas and here at home, what else would we expect other than seeing this manifest in society?

While this video is certainly shocking, it is a symptom of something far more grave. Society is in a crisis of consciousness and until we figure out how to solve problems without the iron fist of the state, this crisis will only continue to worsen. There is no path to peace until the path becomes peace.

Source Article from http://thefreethoughtproject.com/school-cop-lockdown-slams-teen/

Horrifying Report Shows Child Sex Trafficking is Fastest Growing Crime Business in America

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They’re called the Little Barbies.

(Rutherford Institute) Children, young girls—some as young as 9 years old—are being bought and sold for sex in America. The average age for a young woman being sold for sex is now 13 years old.

This is America’s dirty little secret.

According to the National Center for Missing & Exploited Children, “Children are being targeted and sold for sex in America every day.”

Sex trafficking—especially when it comes to the buying and selling of young girls—has become big business in America, the fastest growing business in organized crime and the second most-lucrative commodity traded illegally after drugs and guns.

As investigative journalist Amy Fine Collins notes, “It’s become more lucrative and much safer to sell malleable teens than drugs or guns. A pound of heroin or an AK-47 can be retailed once, but a young girl can be sold 10 to 15 times a day.”

Consider this: every two minutes, a child is exploited in the sex industry.

According to USA Todayadults purchase children for sex at least 2.5 million times a year in the United States.

Who buys a child for sex? Otherwise ordinary men from all walks of life.

They could be your co-worker, doctor, pastor or spouse,” writes journalist Tim Swarens, who spent more than a year investigating the sex trade in America.

In Georgia alone, it is estimated that 7,200 men (half of them in their 30s) seek to purchase sex with adolescent girls each month, averaging roughly 300 a day.

On average, a child might be raped by 6,000 men during a five-year period of servitude.

It is estimated that at least 100,000 children—girls and boys—are bought and sold for sex in the U.S. every year, with as many as 300,000 children in danger of being trafficked each year. Some of these children are forcefully abducted, others are runaways, and still others are sold into the system by relatives and acquaintances.

“Human trafficking—the commercial sexual exploitation of American children and women, via the Internet, strip clubs, escort services, or street prostitution—is on its way to becoming one of the worst crimes in the U.S.,” said prosecutor Krishna Patel.

This is not a problem found only in big cities.

It’s happening everywhere, right under our noses, in suburbs, cities and towns across the nation.

As Ernie Allen of the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children points out, “The only way not to find this in any American city is simply not to look for it.”

It is estimated that there are 100,000 to 150,000 under-aged child sex workers in the U.S.

Every year, the girls being bought and sold gets younger and younger.

Social media makes it all too easy for young people to be preyed upon by sexual predators.

As one news center reported, “Finding girls is easy for pimps. They look on MySpace, Facebook, and other social networks. They and their assistants cruise malls, high schools and middle schools. They pick them up at bus stops. On the trolley. Girl-to-girl recruitment sometimes happens.” Foster homes and youth shelters have also become prime targets for traffickers.

With a growing demand for sexual slavery and an endless supply of girls and women who can be targeted for abduction, this is not a problem that’s going away anytime soon.

In fact, this growing evil is, for all intents and purposes, out in the open: trafficked women and children are advertised on the internet, transported on the interstate, and bought and sold in swanky hotels.

Indeed, as I make clear in my book Battlefield America: The War on the American People, the government’s war on sex trafficking—much like the government’s war on terrorism, drugs and crime—has become a perfect excuse for inflicting more police state tactics (police check points, searches, surveillance, and heightened security) on a vulnerable public, while doing little to make our communities safer.

So what can you do?

Educate yourselves and your children about this growing menace in our communities.

Stop feeding the monster: Sex trafficking is part of a larger continuum in America that runs the gamut from homelessness, poverty, and self-esteem issues to sexualized television, the glorification of a pimp/ho culture—what is often referred to as the pornification of America—and a billion dollar sex industry built on the back of pornography, music, entertainment, etc.

This epidemic is largely one of our own making, especially in a corporate age where the value placed on human life takes a backseat to profit. It is estimated that the porn industry brings in more money than Amazon, Microsoft, Google, Apple, and Yahoo.

Call on your city councils, elected officials and police departments to make the battle against sex trafficking a top priority, more so even than the so-called war on terror and drugs and the militarization of law enforcement.

Stop prosecuting adults for victimless “crimes” such as growing lettuce in their front yard and focus on putting away the pimps and buyers who victimize these young women.

Finally, the police need to do a better job of training, identifying and responding to these issues; communities and social services need to do a better job of protecting runaways, who are the primary targets of traffickers; legislators need to pass legislation aimed at prosecuting traffickers and “johns,” the buyers who drive the demand for sex slaves; and hotels need to stop enabling these traffickers, by providing them with rooms and cover for their dirty deeds.

That so many women and children continue to be victimized, brutalized and treated like human cargo is due to three things: one, a consumer demand that is increasingly lucrative for everyone involved—except the victims; two, a level of corruption so invasive on both a local and international scale that there is little hope of working through established channels for change; and three, an eerie silence from individuals who fail to speak out against such atrocities.

But the truth is that we are all guilty of contributing to this human suffering. The traffickers are guilty. The consumers are guilty. The corrupt law enforcement officials are guilty. The women’s groups who do nothing are guilty. The foreign peacekeepers and aid workers who contribute to the demand for sex slaves are guilty. Most of all, every individual who does not raise a hue and cry over the atrocities being committed against women and children in almost every nation around the globe—including the United States—is guilty.

ABOUT JOHN W. WHITEHEAD

Constitutional attorney and author John W. Whitehead is founder and president of The Rutherford Institute. His new book Battlefield America: The War on the American People (SelectBooks, 2015) is available online at www.amazon.com. Whitehead can be contacted at [email protected].

Source Article from http://thefreethoughtproject.com/horrifying-report-shows-child-sex-trafficking-fastest-growing-crime-business-america/

ISIS video shows jihadists waiting in French countryside to attack "Paris before Rome"

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The pro-ISIS group that last month depicted the invasion of Washington this week declared “Paris before Rome,” depicting a terrorist invasion that began with cells in the countryside outside Paris before attacking the city.

Al-Abd al-Faqir Media released what they called “a cinematic film about the invasion of the Islamic State of the capital of degeneracy … in the near future, inshallah.”

The video opened with a man visiting an ISIS social media account on a computer and a recording of deceased ISIS spokesman Abu Muhammad al-Adnani: “The time is now — we want Paris before Rome and before al-Andalus, after we make your lives miserable and bomb your White House and Big Ben and Eiffel Tower.” Sacking Rome has been a cornerstone of ISIS theology since the beginning of the caliphate.

Showing a map of France, the group showed a rendering of a drone approaching Paris from the southwest, “type: al-Burraq,” which is a drone used by the Pakistani Air Force, “belonging to the caliphate army – location: the western countryside of Paris.”

The film cuts to a wooded countryside “where the infantry unit of the caliphate lie in wait for their enemies,” and showed a mock-up of a French military vehicle targeted by the drone while “trying to advance toward the military centers of the Islamic State.”

In this live-action part of the film, the “French military vehicle” — with the tagline “Army of Satan” — is portrayed by a beat-up pickup as camouflage-clad jihadists dash through the woods and ambush the vehicle. They blow up the truck in the firefight and set about “chasing and capturing the enemies of Allah” who fled the vehicle.

“They fear the flames of hell and seek a kill that will ransom them, for never will a disbeliever and his killer be united in its fire,” says the narrator. Two people with hoods placed over their heads are led into a clearing and shot in the head. It’s unclear where the footage was shot and whether the executions are real, as they’re filmed at a distance.

“After the soldiers of the caliphate completed the siege on the city of Paris, Allah has guided his soldiers to storm the city from the ground tunnels and surprise the enemy with a direct double attack,” continues the film, cutting from tunnel incursions to “chasing the mass of the French border guards on the outskirts of the city.”

With spliced movie scenes showing New York, the “invasion” then proceeds to the “intervention of Islamic war fighters” being directed from the “Islamic Air Operations Command Room.”

Video game-style footage of an attack at the base of the Eiffel Tower is shown while the words of one of the November 2015 Paris attackers play.

To show the Eiffel Tower being destroyed and falling to the ground, the filmmakers later rip off footage from the 2009 movie “G.I. Joe: The Rise of Cobra.”

The film cuts back to the ISIS social media page and promises “the spread of Hesba [accountable] men in the streets of Western Europe.” A video shown on the social media page in the background, though, appears to show a jihadist looking down the street toward the U.S. Capitol.

This is the fourth episode of Al-Faqir’s “conquering” series. The third episode released last month depicted jihadists conquering Washington and renaming the nation’s capital “Wiliyat al-Farouq,” or province of the redeemer.

Source Article from https://www.sott.net/article/376745-ISIS-video-shows-jihadists-waiting-in-French-countryside-to-attack-Paris-before-Rome

Video Shows Cop Snap, Hold Innocent Man at Gunpoint for Riding His Bicycle and Filming

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DeSoto, TX — A deeply disturbing video was submitted to the Free Thought Project this week showing a Desoto police officer pull out his gun and threaten an innocent man in a department store parking lot.

The video has sparked a massive backlash against the DeSoto police department as it began being shared online.

In the video, a person riding his bicycle is filming in a parking lot. He then videos a police SUV off in the distance and proceeded to catch up with the vehicle.

Whether the videographer’s intent was to deliberately film the cop or whether he was merely traveling in the same direction of the cop is irrelevant as neither of these scenarios is illegal and neither of them warranted the response from the cop.

As the man filming continued to travel behind the cop on his bicycle, the cop the suddenly slams on his brakes, jumps out of his SUV, and draws down on the completely innocent person.

Illustrating the nature of the overreaction, the cop holds his pistol trained on the cyclist for a few seconds before jumping into his police cruiser and speeding off.

Let there be no doubt about it, this officer committed a serious crime.

Under Article 42.12, Section 3g of the Texas Code of Criminal Procedure, Aggravated Assault With a Deadly Weapon is grouped with the most serious offenses, like murder, sexual assault, and aggravated kidnapping.

In Texas, regular assault can be committed by hurting someone, making an imminent threat to hurt someone, or causing offensive physical contact with someone. This means that the crime of “Aggravated Assault With a Deadly Weapon” can be committed without actually HURTING anyone with a weapon.

What this DeSoto police officer did is considered under Texas law to be “Aggravated Assault With a Deadly Weapon.”

Aggravated Assault is defined Texas Penal Code 22.02 and is typically a second-degree felony, punishable by 2 to 20 years in the state penitentiary and a fine up to $10,000. However, if this assault is committed against a police officer, it becomes a first-degree felony.

Nowhere in the code, however, does it mention what happens with a police officer commits Aggravated Assault against a citizen.

This officer needs to be investigated immediately and removed from the force as he is a threat to those around him.

Had a citizen done this to another citizen, rest assured, police would be dispatched and a manhunt would be underway for the person who presented the gun.

The Free Thought Project contacted the DeSoto Police Department to inquire about the officer in the video. The department gave up no information on the identity of the officer and they only released the following statement:

The DeSoto Police Department is aware of a video that is circulating on the internet. The Department has received the video and the incident is currently under review. We appreciate everyone’s concern as it relates to this matter.

As you watch the video below, try to imagine what would happen if anyone else but a cop behaved in this way. After you imagine that, ask yourself why it is that this officer has yet to be arrested and his mugshot published in the local news for felony aggravated assault.

A double standard, indeed.

 

 

 

 

Source Article from http://thefreethoughtproject.com/video-shows-cop-snap-hold-innocent-man-gunpoint-riding-bicycle-filming/

Study Shows Kids are Born Creative Geniuses But the Education System Destroys Imagination

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Dr. George Land and Beth Jarman were commissioned by NASA to help the space agency identify and develop creative talent. The two were tasked to research school children in an attempt to identify creative individuals from which the agency could pick to help with their many products. In a recent TED talk, Land described his team’s surprising findings on the education system which are nothing short of shocking.

It seems American schoolchildren lose their ability to think creatively over time. As students enter their educational journey, they retain most of their abilities to think creatively. In other words, children are born with creative genius. Employing a longitudinal study model, Land and Jarman studied 1,600 children at ages 5, 10, and 15.

Surprisingly, Land said they discovered if given a problem with which they had to come up with an imaginative, and innovative solution, 98 percent of 5-year-olds tested at the “genius” level. Simply put, their answers to how the problem should be solved were brilliant.

Upon entry into the school system, those numbers started to drop dramatically. When the team returned to test those same subjects at age 10, the percentage of genius-level imaginative and innovative thinkers fell to an unthinkable 30 percent. The indicators led the researchers to believe the current educational system is to blame. Not only did 68 percent of those students lose their ability to think with imagination and innovation, the thought that only 30 percent could still do is unfathomable.

The downward spiral continued to be demonstrated at age 15.  When the researchers returned, the percentage of genius-level students had dropped to an abysmal 12 percent. Gasps could be heard all around the room as the audience attempted to process how such a brilliant group of students could sink so low in their imaginations and ability to solve problems with innovation.

Land blames the Industrial Revolution and its burgeoning factories for the demise of creativity. During that era, Land said the natural approach to teaching and learning led educators to develop “factories for human beings, too, called ‘schools’ so we could manufacture people that could work well in the factories.”

From a qualitative perspective, teachers point to governmental intrusion into the dumbing down of the nation’s school children. Starting with the development of the Department of Education, the federal government’s handprint is all over some of the worst decisions regarding public policy and education.

From the Clinton Administration’s mandated federal testing guidelines, to Bush’s No Child Left Behind Act, to the disastrous Obama Administration’s Common Core Curriculum, teachers everywhere have complained they’re not teaching any longer. They’re simply instructing students to achieve the minimum educational requirements necessary for them to pass a standardized exam.

Predictably, during those administration’s attempts to force a model of education upon the nation, the homeschool movement has flourished. Parents were forced to come to the conclusion their local public school was failing to provide an education sufficient for their children to be able to attend college.

As a result, Land’s team was not surprised to find only 2 percent of adults (Age 31) still retain their ability to think imaginatively, with creativity and innovation. He said:

Look, folks, if we’re going to enter the future with hope, that’s not going to do it. We have to do something about it.

Land says people can actually get back to thinking creatively with imagination if they will get rid of stinking thinking. He urges listeners to get rid of three aspects of education: judgment, criticism, and censorship.

When students come up with a brilliant idea they’re met with constant criticism, therefore they become conditioned to think like the masses, instead of coming up with an accepted alternative solution.

“Find the 5-year-old,” in yourself, Land implores. He says it has “never gone away” and can be accessed at any moment. Land said “So, The Great Designer said, ‘I’m gonna put that mechanism in so they exercise it every day in case they ever need an idea.’ You’ve got that capability, absolutely!”

But Land says we only exercise that genius part of our brains when we’re dreaming. So dream big! Dream often. And don’t let naysayers rain on your imagination.

Using brain scan imaging, Land demonstrated how the brain is practically useless when it’s afraid. In contrast, the human brain is exceedingly active when it’s imagining.

Without specifically criticizing the educational system, Land addressed the major problem with teaching students to get the “right answer.” He says, instead, students should imagine many possibilities to achieve innovation and problem-solving.

According to Land, in order for industry to survive, it must be continually innovating, and adapting to change, expecting the landscapes to evolve, and evolve with it. Instead of becoming fixated on one right solution, come up with 30-40 imaginative ones to become innovative.

 

 

 

Source Article from http://thefreethoughtproject.com/study-children-brilliant-education-dumbs-down/

Video Shows Cops ‘Dumping’ Severely Distrubed Mentally Ill Man on the Side of the Road

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Los Angeles, CA — Los Angeles sheriff’s deputies were caught on video “dumping” a mentally ill homeless man, who was in the midst of a crisis, on the side of the road. After being called out by local lawmakers, the sheriff’s department is now claiming that this move was done out of “compassion” for the man — seriously.

Both residents and officials in the neighboring jurisdiction of San Pedro have long pointed out how Los Angeles deputies take “problem” citizens and “dump” them in their jurisdiction instead of using Los Angeles resources to deal with the issue.

In this instance, the man being dumped on the side of the road was severely mentally ill and had an outstanding warrant for a transit system violation.

As ABC 7 reports:

Rather than arresting the man – later identified as John Bryan – and getting him assistance from public services, the deputies were seen dropping him off in San Pedro – in the jurisdiction of the LAPD.

The sheriff’s department patrols nearby jurisdictions including communities like Rancho Palos Verdes where they originally made contact with Bryan.

The sheriff’s department is denying that it engaged in dumping. Instead, the department said, the deputies dropped off Bryan near a bus stop where he could use his MTA pass. They chose not to arrest him out of compassion and because of jail overcrowding, they said.

City Councilman Joe Buscaino is outraged by the video. The deputies, he said, should have gotten the man some assistance.

“In the city of Los Angeles we’ve often been victim of patient dumping and we’ve had enough,” Buscaino said.

City officials have since called for an investigation into the incident after the video began circulating online.

“I am deeply concerned after seeing video of LA County Sheriff’s deputies unloading a homeless individual with an outstanding arrest warrant, displaying characteristics of mental illness on San Pedro streets near the border with Rancho Palos Verdes. This happened on the same day that the LA County Board of Supervisors called for an updated definition to make it easier for first responders to place gravely disabled persons into care. Now is not the time to pawn off those with mental health issues onto adjacent jurisdictions, but rather, for all cities to step up to the plate and provide housing and services for the homeless immediately,” Buscaino wrote on Facebook.

As the man filming, Mike Olivieri sees the cops unloading the mentally ill man, he calls them out as this is a familiar scene to him.

Naturally, police are claiming that “dumping” Bryan on the side of the road was for his own benefit.

“Is arrest the answer? Is involuntary detention an answer? In some cases, yes. In this case, the deputies made a determination that that wasn’t the answer,” said Capt. Darren Harris with the Sheriff’s Department.

The deputies explained that they were going to bring the man to the bus stop but said they stopped short in “an act of compassion” on the side of the road because he wanted to go to the store. Exactly why they didn’t just drop him at the store remains a mystery.

“The deputies determined they just wanted to help him. Out of an act of compassion and kindness, they were trying to help this individual rather than arrest him,” Harris said.

While not arresting Bryan seems like a decent step, a video taken after he was dropped off, by another witness, proved just how incompassionate this dumping was.

In the second video, Bryan is writhing in agony on the ground in a clearly delusional state, shirtless, shoeless, and helpless. But hey, at least he had ‘help’ from the ‘compassionate’ Los Angeles sheriff’s department.

“Mr. Bryan clearly needed help,” Los Angeles County Supervisor Janice Hahn said. “I question whether or not our Sheriff’s deputies could have done more to get him the help he needed before they left him and drove away.”

Public ‘service’ indeed.

Source Article from http://thefreethoughtproject.com/video-shows-lapd-cops-dumping-mentally-ill-man-on-the-side-of-the-road/

Overflowing Swamp: Non-Partisan Watchdog Report Shows Political Bribery Now at Record Levels

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While President Trump promised to “drain the swamp” when he was on the campaign trail, a new report from a non-profit, nonpartisan research group shows that after one year of the Trump administration, lobbying is at records levels in Washington.

The Center for Responsive Politics reported that in 2017, the number of registered lobbyists along with federal lobbying expenditures went up, reversing annual declines in both registrations and spending that began a decade ago.” This increase occurred for the first time since 2007.

The report noted that the money spent on federal lobbying increased by 6 percent, rising from $3.15 billion to $3.34 billion, and marking the largest increase in one year since former President George W. Bush’s last year in office.

In contrast, spending on lobbying had declined five of the past six years, and up until 2017, the report claimed that “the number of registered lobbyists had dropped each of the past 10 years, from a record 14,827 in 2007 to a 20-year low of 11,169 in 2016.” The number then increased last year:

“Last year, 11,444 registered lobbyists appeared in quarterly reports filed with Congress. Those reports include basic information on spending, issues and entities lobbied, usually with vague language and broad strokes.

A fourth-quarter report by Kevin Kayes of QGA Public Affairs, for instance, said the firm was paid $37,500 by U.S. Steel to lobby on ‘trade law enforcement.’ The audience was ‘U.S. Senate, U.S. House of Representatives.’

Based on the report—typical for most filings—the members of Congress who were lobbied by the firm is obscured from public scrutiny.”  

The Center for Responsive Politics also found that thousands of lobbyists who were supposed to report their activities failed to do so until after the filing deadlines had passed—and they faced no consequences.

In 2017, there were a number of companies that significantly increased the amount they spent on lobbying—many of which were tech companies. The report noted that Facebook spent $11 million, Amazon spent $13 million—about $2 million more than it spent in 2016—and Google spent $18 million on lobbying.

While lobbying expenditures went down under the Obama administration, it should be noted that the results were nowhere near what Obama promised when he was on the campaign trail.

No political appointees in an Obama-Biden administration will be permitted to work on regulations or contracts directly and substantially related to their prior employer for two years,” Obama promised. “And no political appointee will be able to lobby the executive branch after leaving government service during the remainder of the administration.”

However, Politifact reported that the administration “granted waivers to several former lobbyists, allowing them to serve. The administration also allows recusals, where former lobbyists simply recuse themselves from discussions concerning whatever interest it is for which they used to lobby.”

President Trump was also critical of the corruption in Washington while he was on the campaign trail. He told CBS’ Face The Nation in June 2016 “he would ‘have no problem’ banning lobbyists and big donors from working in his administration.”

While it appears that Trump has changed his tune—in the same way that Obama retreated on his promises—a comment made about Trump in 2015 is notable today. When one Twitter user wrote, “The Donald owes NOTHING to lobbyists. He could restore our Republic,” Trump retweeted the statement and wrote, “True.”

 

Source Article from http://thefreethoughtproject.com/non-partisan-watchdog-report-shows-political-bribery-record-levels/