consultants are sandburs

Saturday, June 29, 2013

Pot roast pig. Does it taste like chicken?

This link. Mix in a fair portion of spent corn mash from the ethanol plants, plus, find a niche?

The deal was going down for three hungry Berkshire pigs from a Washington state farm, and a German television crew was there to film it.

Part flavor experiment, part green recycling, part promotion and bolstered by the legalization of recreational marijuana in Washington state, pot excess has been fed to the hogs by their owners, pig farmer Jeremy Gross and Seattle butcher William von Schneidau, since earlier this year.

Gross and von Schneidau now sell their "pot pig" cuts at von Schneidau's butcher shop in Seattle's Pike Place Market at a premium price — bacon is $17 a pound while chops go for $16.90 a pound.

"He's like 'let's see what kind of flavor it gives it.' So we ran it and it gave good flavor," Gross said. "It's like anything else, what you feed them is what they're going to taste like. It's almost like a savory alfalfa fed cow or alfalfa fed pig."

What is this? Tar and feather one Wall Street scumbucket, former politico, former Goldman Sachs honcho. Do that, move on, no more to see here.

Corzine. Gross actions. Make an example of him, as with one or two Enroners. Then back to sleep.

UPDATE; The CTFC press release, with links, here.


Robert X. Cringely writing, this link. Do a web search for Cringely, check out some of his other internet online work.

If ou live in Ramsey and read ...

Anoka County Library services in city hall, this link.

Ramsey - Armstrong interchange gets a grant. Interchange of Dreams. Build it and they shall drive.

This link.

Friday, June 28, 2013

The drumbeat, that unceasing drumbeat, on the march to reawaken all we once were and with the right people making decisions, what we can be again.

This link:

Larry Klayman, a former Justice Department prosecutor and founder of Judicial Watch and Freedom Watch, today issued the following statement [...]

Now claiming that this massive violation of privacy and other constitutional rights is justified to combat terrorism, these Washington establishment rats are in full spin mode. On many of the Sunday talk shows, they were present in full force, trying to divert attention away from NSA-gate, lest it implicate them in the patently illegal criminal conduct.

But the American people are not fooled, no more than our Founding Fathers Benjamin Franklin, John Adams and Thomas Jefferson were fooled by King George III's wholesale violation of basic human rights in the years leading up to the Declaration of Independence and the start of the revolutionary war, when the British busted into our homes, stole our worldly possessions, taxed us into submission, perverted our legal system and, when we complained, seized and destroyed our weapons of self defense.

The potential number of class action plaintiffs in the two cases which I filed over NSA-gate potentially number over 300 million persons. The masses thus have the legal means to rise up and and hold the Washington establishment rats, which include but are not limited to defendants President Obama, Attorney General Holder, the Justice Department, the heads of the NSA and the cell and internet providers, the agencies and companies themselves, and federal judge Roger Vinson, responsible for their outrageous criminal acts. These cases can be the catalyst which sparks the new American revolution, peacefully and in the courts.

But if the federal judiciary does not hear the legitimate grievances of the American people and take corrective action, and instead seek to protect the Washington establishment rats who put them in power, then it could be 1776 all over again, as the people have been violated and raped, and they demand redress! Coupled with all of the other outrageous abuses of the government and its enablers, which have in the last decades been piling up, and gotten much worse during the Obama administration, the citizenry is more than angry; and it has had it! In the footsteps of our Founding Fathers, the American citizenry want a return to a free country and is prepared to take all just and appropriate measures to restore the nation to its foundational roots before it is destroyed by these arrogant, power hungry and lawless tyrants," pleaded Klayman.

Glory, glory, hallelujah.

Oops, wrong war ...

No single isolated situation or characterization wholly defines a person. And judges can write harshly, often, however, with cause. Society puts judges into situations where litigants can be unhappy with an outcome. But what should be a response? Consider all such dimensions, in reading earlier Larry Klayman litigation; Klayman v. Judicial Watch, Inc., 628 F. Supp. 2d 98 (D.C. Cir. 2009). Does reading that give an impression somebody was stepping beyond generally accepted bounds? If you think, "Yes," then would the overstepping individual be Larry Klayman, or the Judge who authored that memorandum opinion? And, is there a rule of law that a litigant in federal court gets to pick a judge appointed by a President that litigant liked better than some other President? If you think so, how would you handle possible added motions caseload in the courts?

Klayman v. KOLLAR-KOTELLY, 892 F. Supp. 2d 261 (D.C. Dist. 2012) is another Larry Klayman filing related to that cited in the above paragraph. If you read both cases, is there any surprise in the outcome of the more recent published opinion? And - what do you make of footnote 1, in the Kollar-Kotelly, case. Interesting links, here, here, here and here. On the birther front, Farah v. Esquire Magazine, Inc., 863 F. Supp. 2d 29 (D.C. Dist 2012), shows another instance where Klayman ended up on the losing end of a dismissal motion. Let us hope he steers one in to dock, rather than lost at sea, dismissed, in the NSA Spying on You and Me litigation he's pursuing.

The Wikipedia page on Judicial Watch, notes:

Between 1997 and 2002 Judicial Watch received $7,069,500 (unadjusted for inflation) in 19 grants from a handful of foundations. The bulk of this funding came from just three foundations – the Sarah Scaife Foundation, The Carthage Foundation, both managed by Richard Mellon Scaife, and the John M. Olin Foundation, Inc., which folded in 2005. As of 2010, Scaife remains the group's main contributor

View that, if you choose, as an endorsement. Scaife, Klayman, birther mythology. Hanging together. My hope is with the ACLU's suit against NSA. It is not based on any dislike toward Klayman. Future uncertainties always abound. Klayman may win one of the two suits he has filed against the NSA spying; and he is seeking bonanza damages, should he win. I wish him success.

FURTHER UPDATE: More success than here,

Perhaps the commentary here may strike one as hyperbole, but being fair to Klayman, some of the cases he files are not ones all objective viewers would consider rock-solid winners, so that Klayman's dismissals record needs reading in that light. The item WAS written before the whole ugly NSA spying on Americans situation arose, and before Klayman filed his two quite interesting related class action lawsuits.

Hyperbole aside, the bottom line has to be the specific cases Klayman filed and litigated, and his success ratio, stand together and speak for themselves. That is the objective truth. It is up to the reader to decide as a subjective thing whether the entirety Klayman's litigation track record is to be somehow viewed as a singular thing, or whether his cases and web commentary touching national public figures should be segregated from his marriage dissolution litigation and the defamation suits Klaymen has tirelessly filed related to it. Not as to successes or failures, but as to two separate things, one political and the other personal.

However, there is the other side of that coin. Are people made of parts that should stand separately, or are they judged in totality, (discounting the more distant past such as what Dick Cheney or various Presidents did during The War).

Some things are best in repose.

Post Updated: July 2, 2013. Happy 4th, to all readers, be they military veterans, or non-veterans. A good holiday to all.

Post Update, July 3, 2013. Awaiting the Friday deadline, see item 13, this docket.

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Remember, Crabgrass claims no special crystal ball foretelling fate's fickle moves. However, remember you read it here first, the prediction the GOP runs Matt Birk against Al Franken, with lots of Norm Coleman's PAC money greasing all the skids.

Screen Capture from here.

As always, half a story is only half a story. So -

Hi Matt. Kazeminy no longer needed. (credit: this page)

"If elected, Thompson said, he would push to allow parents to use public money – possibly tuition tax credits -- to send their children to private schools."

College vouchers too?

Yes, Brodkorb's former associate during happier GOP unity days, Dave Thompson, is running for Governor.

The Crabgrass Headline is a quote from here. Mid-article. Two Putt Tommy writes, here. Bluestem Prairie, here.

Their best and brightest?

Then, there is Zellers.

This link. Is Thompson running as a sore-headed loser? He did not get HIS amendment on the last ballot, others got theirs, but his party in control of the ballot question fiasco felt his amendment too toxic and/or controversial? Also,

google = "dave thompson" minnesota alec

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Contesting men of fewer privileges.

Bluestem Prairie: Here and here. Luckily, never barefoot, they always had their bootstraps.

(P.S. If you do not follow the links you miss a hot video.)

Folks who can be expected to be as helpful to the Abeler for Governor effort as they have been for their Senate District guy in office, Minnesota Senate.

Jolly, jolly, folly.

The proud, the few, the SD35 GOP trend setters. This link. These folks. This, their "latest news" page online. More a bunch of Facebookers than anything higher, better. Log in, to enjoy the Facebook experience. Or don't Facebook around, and risk feeling excluded from the select and elite. Like, I was inattentive, missed something really big:

Missed. June 8. A BBQ with Mary Franson.
A missed chance to watch them feed the animals.

And, the mystery of why Jim Bendtsen supports Tom Emmer. Lost to me, by their requiring a Facebook Log-in to get to see inner acolyte thought patterns. Reader help in a comment, please. Why does Jim Bendtsen support Tom Emmer? Anyone with that answer, please leave a comment. (Jim, you could too.)

Last, ooh, ooh, ooh, I can get into their "Photos" link, e.g.,

Sunday, June 23, 2013

Nnacy Pelosi - you could boo her for being a career politician too.

Suppose you are a career politician. Suppose you say something really dumb at the wrong place. But I repeat myself. Links, here and here.

In other news, experts of unparalleled insight expound and expound on a different issue.

KURT ZELLERS: After a decade in the legislature, why not shoot for Governor? Somebody who can fog a mirror will have to run against Dayton's second term effort.

Strib here. Holding himself out to be humble, in a way that makes him yearn to be Governor?

Zellers campaign site, here.

UPDATE: PiPress, here, this quote:

The former Minnesota House speaker is the third Republican in the race. Orono businessman Scott Honour and Hennepin County Commissioner Jeff Johnson announced earlier this spring, and the field is about to get more crowded.

State Sen. Dave Thompson of Lakeville plans to file as a candidate Monday and launch his campaign Wednesday. Other possible GOP contenders include state Rep. Matt Dean of Dellwood, Senate Minority Leader David Hann of Eden Prairie, Sen. Julie Rosen of Fairmont and former House Minority Leader Marty Seifert of Marshall.

Mirror foggers. What about Brodkorb? Tested. Ready.

MN Progressive Project has some interesting recent posts.

You should bookmark it. Among other things, they look from a progressive's perspective, at Republicans who thus far have declared for the CD6 Congressional seat now held by what's her name, the lame duck.

Throw a bone to Flaherty?

Or give him bonanza-bucks treatment? This link. Hagen's going to have to get better. No breakdown, whether it was a unanimous vote or whether some had or felt cause to vote no. Reader help is requested - who voted how? Please leave a comment.

Poll shows 37% of Americans are wholly delusional and detached from all reality.

Strib, here, this from late in the item:

In general terms, however, people view Republicans less favorably than they do Democrats. A Quinnipiac University poll conducted this spring found that 53 percent of registered voters felt the Democratic Party "cares about the needs and problems of people like you," while just 37 percent said the GOP did.

Not to say the Democrats are all that good, but the question was posed as one of comparison rather than going to any questions of excellence of mind, or quality of legislative output ...

Still, 37% of registered voters drinking Willard "Mitt" Romney's, Paul Ryan's, and Michele Bachmann's Koolaid is frightening.

Dear Judge. You blew it big time. It's a website, not a newspaper, despite what you may say. And who, besides the Hamiltonians, were parties to this little exercise?

This screen capture:

That's a crock. It is a website.

So, Harold and JK, who exactly was party to this contrived little love-in?

Privacy and our government spying on us. Freedom from intrusion. Watchdog opinion is not unlike Crabgrass opinion of what our priorities should be.

Harold Hamilton, this link. Plus he has a few notes about the Sivarajah for Congress effort. It's worthwhile reading, both items.

Saturday, June 22, 2013

Save a tree, switch to electronic-only court filings?

Click to enlarge and read. Full item, here.

How many pages does it take to explain how to change a light bulb?

Klayman's latest, 21 pages of complaint text, 54 pages of exhibits, 75 pages total, here.

I get a drift that Klayman dislikes an outcome unfavorable to him, but how far is reaching too far?

It would be best if he had a stronger focus on the NSA spying suits he's recently filed. Of course that's an opinion that Klayman's actions belittle as wrongly viewing things. He has the filing fees, so onward toward an outcome. Toward outcomes. How it is. How it should be? So far, nobody in a black robe with a big enough hammer has told Klayman to stop, so, he moves as he chooses. In America, a barrage of litigation can flow out of such a pattern. But in America, access to judicial redress is so entrenched and essential, that Klayman's volume of litigation goes with the protections you and I want for ourselves. Let Larry rile and file. See what happens. Etc.

A bit of screen capturing from early in Klayman's complaint:


You can get from that the drift of what's bothering Larry Klayman about his family court experiences. And there's more. A full 21 pages, plus exhibits. The appearance is Klayman will not allow his Ohio family court litigation repose. He keeps churning paper over it, and complains when others notice and report what he's instigating, unless reporting is favorable toward him. As if there are only two categories, favorable or wrong? Why is Klayman doing this, now? Filing in Florida against a judicial process he consented to participate in in Ohio, which was a fine venue then, for Klayman's purposes, then. Now, Florida? Why there? Why now?

Friday, June 21, 2013

Klayman v. City Pages, latest development. Defendants filed a motion for dismissal, not having filed a responsive pleading. Klayman proposes an amended complaint. By consent, it is to be filed in July.

You can do your own web search beyond this. The case docket is online here, with the below first page of docket item 12. Click the image to enlarge and read:

Klayman's June 6 motion by consent states,

New facts have come to light which have necessitated the amending of the complaint and Plaintiff intends to do so. The actionable conduct is continuing and there are new defamatory publications and other related facts. [,,,] Counsel have agreed that Plaintiff may have until and including July 5, 2013 for Plaintiff to file an amended complaint.

The docket indicates an order of equal date was filed, (Docket Item 13, not downloadable), with this summary given in the docket:

ORDER denying without prejudice 10 Motion to dismiss; granting 12 Motion to reset schedule. Amended complaint due 7/5/13. Signed by Chief Judge Anne C. Conway on 6/6/2013. (LAK) (Entered: 06/06/2013)

Klayman, some may recall, represented Bradlee Dean in suing Rachel Maddow. See reporting here and here. Wonkette, here. Bluestem Prairie, here. N.Y.Times, here. RightWingWatch, here, and e.g., here.

The dismissal motion in the suit against Maddow/MSNBC is posted in Scribd format, here, and these three salient points are from online quoting, here:

The defendants give three reasons in a 51-page motion why Dean's lawsuit is likely to fail:

"One, the broadcasts truthfully reported on Dean’s May 15th statements. Those broadcasts re-played original audio of Dean speaking on the May 15th radio show. Dean does not – and cannot – allege that he did not make those controversial statements. The fact that NBCUniversal broadcast the essence but not the entirety of what Dean said during that radio show, as he now protests, does not change this analysis. Dean bears sole responsibility for the consequences of his words, however much he may try to distance himself from the backlash."

"Two, the commentary or rebuke Maddow offered about Dean’s statements was classic opinion and rhetorical hyperbole, and thus, cannot be actionable as a matter of law. As Dean is entitled to his opinions, however objectionable, so too is Maddow entitled to hers."

"Three, the fair comment privilege protects Maddow’s commentary. The broadcasts featured Dean’s actual statements and clearly indicated the source of those statements. Viewers were free to make up their own minds as to whether they agreed with Maddow’s remarks."

Flaherty & Collins. More of the same.

In Indiana where they are headquartered, this link.

Request for reader help via comments: How well is FC stuff in Ramsey renting out these days? If you know of any current or recent online reporting about whether the stuff is renting, please provide a link.

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Al, this is no joke ...

Crabgrass reports,

memorialized by screen capture:

click to enlarge and read

Readers who are Abeler supportors are reminded, the PayPal donation button does not work off the screen capture, so I am flagging that the PayPal toggle on his new and likely to be expanded campaign website works. It rotors to a PayPal page, "Abeler4senate."

ABC Newspapers reports on the Abeler candidacy, here; and on another GOP challenger to Franken, here.

Saturday, June 15, 2013

The latest Economist issue arrived. How about that cover?

This link. For the cover.

Contents, here.

This cartoon. Fair and balanced?

Coverage, here and here.

Some, perhaps many, may dislike Larry Klayman. But nobody else is making a mega-court-case attempt to put NSA-Bush-Obama spying on Americans to a test. The press may already have moved on.

Klayman, on video, the Eximiner website, here.

Wikipedia, this link.
The ACLU is going after the morality and legality issues, as is Klayman, but nobody else is aiming to park a bonanza recovery in the driveway, in the home, besides Klayman. At least nobody is being publicly assertive about any such action, besides Klayman.

My big problem with it, first, I hope he wins and parks that fortune away, since losing would not quell stuff as much as a big verdict grabbing headlines nationwide, were one to be attained.

Second big problem, the guy is NOT yet suing members of the House and Senate intelligence committees. With much of Klayman's pleading being "on information and belief" a hope is somebody informs him and makes him believe he can kick the plea for relief up over a hundred billion, and put in every one of those NSA spy-on-you-me-and-up-and-down-the-quiet-street-we-live-on enablers and fellow travelers in Congress.

Saying it is a giant conspiracy, and suggesting political aid and abetting among DC politicians and political figures, without naming, suing, and serving complicit Congressional staff and legislators on the two intelligence committees seems like giving a rock concert while only scheduling the opening act to show up. Like only scheduling Bradlee Dean, and not his entire band.

Larry, can you hear me now? Can you hear me now?

Larry, sue that nest of Patriot Actors/Authors too, please.

Make it less rhetoric, more defendants on the complaint.

Shifting from Klayman rhetoric, to that of the New York Times editorial staff:

The government can easily collect phone records (including the actual content of those calls) on “known or suspected terrorists” without logging every call made. In fact, the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act was expanded in 2008 for that very purpose.

Essentially, the administration is saying that without any individual suspicion of wrongdoing, the government is allowed to know whom Americans are calling every time they make a phone call, for how long they talk and from where.

This sort of tracking can reveal a lot of personal and intimate information about an individual. To casually permit this surveillance — with the American public having no idea that the executive branch is now exercising this power — fundamentally shifts power between the individual and the state, and it repudiates constitutional principles governing search, seizure and privacy.

The defense of this practice offered by Senator Dianne Feinstein of California, who as chairwoman of the Senate Intelligence Committee is supposed to be preventing this sort of overreaching, was absurd. She said on Thursday that the authorities need this information in case someone might become a terrorist in the future. Senator Saxby Chambliss of Georgia, the vice chairman of the committee, said the surveillance has “proved meritorious, because we have gathered significant information on bad guys and only on bad guys over the years.”

But what assurance do we have of that, especially since Ms. Feinstein went on to say that she actually did not know how the data being collected was used?

[FISA link in original.]

Chilling you yet, to make fewer calls, to voice fewer criticism of our nation's power elite? More Times, same item:

Mr. Obama clearly had no intention of revealing this eavesdropping, just as he would not have acknowledged the killing of Anwar al-Awlaki, an American citizen, had it not been reported in the press. Even then, it took him more than a year and a half to acknowledge the killing, and he is still keeping secret the protocol by which he makes such decisions.

We are not questioning the legality under the Patriot Act of the court order disclosed by The Guardian. But we strongly object to using that power in this manner. It is the very sort of thing against which Mr. Obama once railed, when he said in 2007 that the surveillance policy of the George W. Bush administration “puts forward a false choice between the liberties we cherish and the security we provide.”

Two Democrats on the Senate Intelligence Committee, Ron Wyden of Oregon and Mark Udall of Colorado, have raised warnings about the government’s overbroad interpretation of its surveillance powers. “We believe most Americans would be stunned to learn the details of how these secret court opinions have interpreted Section 215 of the Patriot Act,” they wrote last year in a letter to Attorney General Eric Holder Jr. “As we see it, there is now a significant gap between what most Americans think the law allows and what the government secretly claims the law allows. This is a problem, because it is impossible to have an informed public debate about what the law should say when the public doesn’t know what its government thinks the law says.”

On Thursday, Representative Jim Sensenbrenner, Republican of Wisconsin, who introduced the Patriot Act in 2001, said that the National Security Agency overstepped its bounds by obtaining a secret order to collect phone log records from millions of Americans.

A separate NYT editorial, here, sums things up well:

But even in the unlikely case that the government never eavesdrops on the wrong people, the cost to civil liberties is still too high. The tiny chance of a useful match cannot justify collecting everyone’s phone records, or running searches on millions of e-mail messages and Internet chats.

As Jameel Jaffer, deputy legal director of the American Civil Liberties Union, put it today, imagine if the government required every American to report to the government every night who they spoke to, or texted, for how long, and from where. People would be furious, but that’s precisely the information the N.S.A. is collecting from telecom companies. And it’s precisely why the government desperately wanted to keep the practice a secret.

But now the world knows what many members of Congress have kept buttoned up for years. Will Democrats stick to their principles and criticize President Obama for perpetuating a practice that began under President George W. Bush? And will Republicans, happy to find something new to stimulate anger against the White House, demand actual change in a program they defended for years?

These are old dogs, so new tricks are not expected. And Wyden and Udall sending a CYA email to Holder, try taking that to the bank. Plus, those finely worded editorials were put online last week, the question being has the N.Y. Times since moved on? Klayman's effort, whatever else arises from it, may keep the NSA-government spying upon us the citizens on the front burner, rather than it rendering to an ineffectual end, back-burner.

Wydeen/Udall: We went on record. We got our "Not Us" ticket punched.

Too little. That simple. That tiny thing went fully unheard. Does Wyden care? Does Udall? Each can say "I wrote," to which the public rightly can say, "So what?"

The Moonies paper has this editorial. Reader comments on point are welcome.

Thursday, June 13, 2013

ABCNewspapers reports two candidates filed to run for te open Ward 1 Ramsey City Council seat.

This link:

Jill Johns and Tom Heifort will vie for election in Ward 1 at a special election July 30.

[...] The term will expire Dec. 31, 2014, putting Ward 1 back on the ballot in the 2014 general election.

It is looking askance to not focus on every Representative and every Senator who knowingly went along as spy-on-Americans fellow-travelers. And to push very hard to get every last one of them unelected ASAP.

It is not what the Bush people started and the Obama people, (without missing a heartbeat), expanded and continued. It is who knew we citizens were routinely being spied upon by our government and who loved it. Or liked it enough to not ever complain. ALL the complicit instigators and fellow-travelers. So what did the bastards know, and when did they know it?

This link
is source for this extended quote - and you, readers, figure out who's to blame and don't spare blame since there's a ton of blame to go around, starting at the White House Oval Office - and starting years before the present lead prepetuator [can you say "CHANGE"?] took office with promises aplenty.

As the Obama administration insists that Congress was fully informed about the National Security Agency's widespread surveillance on Americans' phone records, its intelligence chief is becoming a complication.

James Clapper, the director of national intelligence, has now admitted he gave the "least untruthful" answer to a direct question in March about the extent of surveillance on US citizens. The admission sets up a critical test of Clapper's relationship with the congressional committees that oversee him – committees the Obama administration is relying on for its defense of the surveillance efforts.

The Obama team is expressing support for Clapper as criticism of him mounts. "The president has full faith in director Clapper and his leadership of the intelligence community," National Security Council spokeswoman Caitlin Hayden told the Guardian on Wednesday.

At least one member of Congress is calling for Clapper's head. On his Facebook page, Justin Amash, a Michigan Republican, wrote that Clapper "lied under oath" to Congress.

"It now appears clear that the director of national intelligence, James Clapper, lied under oath to Congress and the American people," Amash posted on Wednesday morning. "Members of Congress can't make informed decisions on intelligence issues when the head of the intelligence community wilfully makes false statements. Perjury is a serious crime. Mr Clapper should resign immediately."

At a hearing of the Senate intelligence committee on 12 March, Oregon Democrat Ron Wyden grew frustrated that he could not get a "direct answer" from Clapper about a question Wyden said he had been posing to the intelligence agencies in a series of letters for a year: when do US spies need a warrant to surveil Americans' communications?

"What I wanted to see is if you could give me a yes or no answer to the question: does the NSA collect any type of data at all on millions or hundreds of millions of Americans?" Wyden asked Clapper.

"No, sir," Clapper said. "Not wittingly. There are cases where they could inadvertently, perhaps, collect, but not wittingly."

Clapper's claim to Congress was undermined by an April order of the secretive Fisa court instructing Verizon to turn over phone records on millions of Americans to the National Security Agency. Published by the Guardian, the order explicitly authorized the NSA to collect so-called metadata "between the United States and abroad; or wholly within the United States, including local telephone calls." An NSA data-mining program, called Boundless Informant and also revealed by the Guardian, further allows the NSA to sort its collected communications by country of origin.

Clapper defended himself in a surprising way. He told NBC's Andrea Mitchell this week that the question was unfair, akin to asking him when he was going to stop beating his wife. "So I responded in what I thought was the most truthful, or least untruthful manner by saying no," Clapper said.

Clapper is in danger of becoming a meme signifying government deception about surveillance.

Put Clapper out to pasture. Pronto.

Also -- Impeach Judge Roger Vinson. For starters. Yesterday would not be soon enough to dump the Verizon order signing clown.

Show intolerance for police state treatment of you and your families. It sucks. Get that through to the politicians and the people running American life. The 1%. They are unconscionably at fault. It is their people that fill top rank spook-and-spy positions - and it is they who want to know what we, the 99%, are really thinking. Who we talk to. Our friendships and cabals. We are faultless citizens and voters. We are not criminals.

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Rep, Rhonda?

She hopes.

This link.

Other online sites pick up the story. Do a websearch. Budig reporting here, this screencapture.

Rhonda says, "I’ll bring common sense to Washington, [...] Washington is full of people who talk and talk and talk."

Hard on the incumbent, or what?

Budig reported, "A number of area lawmakers – Rep. Peggy Scott, R-Andover; Sen. Michelle Benson, R-Ham Lake; and Sen. Roger Chamberlain of Lino Lakes – lined up behind Sivarajah at her announcement."

Matt Look could not make it? Dogs watched from afar?

_______FURTHER UPDATE_______
Amy Koch declares, not in the running, and endorses "Wright County neighbor" Tom Emmer. There are no signs Republican Michael Brodkorb will be running either, for the CD6 seat.

Stop Watching Us.

Larry Klayman to ACLU? I'll see your lawsuit, and raise you one.

Here for latest Klayman item, reportedly to be filed and served Wednesday [today], June 12.

Thirty-two pages. US News and World Reports reports on both Klayman actions, posting each via Scribd, here and here, with the latter [twenty billion dollar] class action suit stating:


1. Plaintiffs bring this action on behalf of themselves and all other similarly situated consumers, users, and U.S. citizens who are subscribers, users, customers, and otherwise avail themselves to Facebook, Yahoo, Google, Microsoft, YouTube, AOL, PalTalk, Skype, Sprint, AT&T, and/or Apple.2.

2. This is an action for monetary, declaratory, equitable, and injunctive relief as a result of the U.S. Government’s illegal and unconstitutional use of an electronic surveillance program in violation of the First, Fourth, and Fifth Amendments to the U.S. Constitution.This action also involves violations of privacy, including intrusion upon seclusion,freedom of expression and association, due process and other illegal acts. This is also an action for divulgence of communication records in violation of 18 U.S.C. §2702(a)(1),(2), and (3). In addition, this lawsuit challenges the government’s expansive acquisition of Plaintiffs’ telephone records under Section 215 of the Patriot Act, 50 U.S.C. §1860 and the legality of Defendants’ participation and conduct in a secret and illegal government scheme to intercept and analyze vast quantities of communications from the Internet and electronic service providers.



116. Plaintiffs and Class members demand that judgment be entered against Defendants, each and every one of them, jointly and severally, for compensatory and actual damages because of Defendants’ illegal actions causing this demonstrable injury to Plaintiffs and Class members, punitive damages because of Defendants’ callous, reckless indifference and malicious acts, and attorneys fees and costs in an amount in excess of $20 billion U.S. dollars and such other relief the Court may deem just and proper.

117. Plaintiffs and Class members demand declaratory, equitable and injunctive relief for their injuries in the following ways: (1) a cease and desist order to prohibit this type of illegal and criminal activity against Plaintiffs, Class members, and other U.S. citizens from occurring now and in the future; (2) that all Plaintiffs’ and Class members’ phone and internet records and communication records, whether telephonic or electronic, be returned to the provider and expunged from federal government records; and (3) a full disclosure and a complete accounting of what each Defendant and government agencies as a whole have done and allowed the DOJ and NSA to do.

JURY DEMAND Plaintiffs respectfully demands a jury trial on all issues so triable.

photo from here
Twenty billion. Sought and expected? To boldly go where none have gone before. Do you suppose the Klayman strategy is to deep pocket his opponents into caving in and settling? Outspend them dollar for dollar, to prevail? When Klayman steers both actions to a successful resolution for himself, other named representative plaintiffs, and the represented class; will that put Klayman into Forbes' top ten wealthiest persons worldwide?

Fortune smiles on those who help themselves and others, against government and corporate excess?

Beyond guesses and speculation over future events and outcomes, again, read reporting, here and here.

Klayman posts his latest 32-page complaint online, in downloadable pdf form, Complaint.pdf

Are you with the WaPo majority [56% vs 41%], or with the Volokh majority? Or do you agree with ALL of your friends and see yourself in both majorities?

This link. Take a poll. See a result. See if you are surprised.

8:25 AM 6/12/2013 - UPDATE: N.Y. Times, here, hat tip for link, here. Atlantic, here. Reuters, here.

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Litigation over NSA spying on you and me. Enter the A-Team. Make that the ACLU team. Amateur Hour is over.

Photo credit, Wikipedia.
The big shoe dropped next to the little one.

ACLU v. Obama now joins Klayman v. Obama.

ABC Network carries online an AP report;

The American Civil Liberties Union sued the Obama administration Tuesday, asking the government to halt a phone-tracking program that collects the telephone records of millions of Americans and that it says is unconstitutional.

[...] "The practice is akin to snatching every American's address book — with annotations detailing whom we spoke to, when we talked, for how long, and from where," the lawsuit says. "It gives the government a comprehensive record of our associations and public movements, revealing a wealth of detail about our familial, political, professional, religious, and intimate associations."

The lawsuit — which names as defendants the heads of national intelligence as well as the agencies they lead, including the National Security Agency, the FBI, the Department of Defense and the Department of Justice — also asks the court to purge phone records collected under the program, claiming the government action violates the First and Fourth Amendments of the Constitution.

The Department of Justice did not immediately return a call seeking comment. President Barack Obama has defended the program and says privacy must be balanced with security.

Last week, Britain's Guardian newspaper reported the secret Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court on April 25 issued an order granting the NSA permission to collect telephone records of millions of Verizon customers. The order was good until July 19, the newspaper said.

The order requires Verizon, one of the nation's largest telecommunications companies, on an "ongoing, daily basis" to give the NSA information on all telephone calls in its systems, both within the U.S. and between the U.S. and other countries.

The ACLU claims standing as a former customer of Verizon, adding that the government likely has much of its metadata stored in its databases.

The suit also alleges the government's program exceeds the congressional authority provided by the Patriot Act [''']

Additional news reporting of ACLU activities; RawStory carrying Reuters, here; with N.Y. Times reporting, here:

[...] The Justice Department declined to comment on the suit.

In other lawsuits against national security policies, the government has often persuaded courts to dismiss them without ruling on the merits by arguing that litigation would reveal state secrets or that the plaintiffs could not prove they were personally affected and so lacked standing in court.

This case may be different. The government has now declassified the existence of the program. And the A.C.L.U. is a customer of Verizon Business Network Services — the recipient of a leaked secret court order for all its domestic calling records — which it says gives it standing.

The call logging program keeps a record of “metadata” from domestic phone calls, including which numbers were dialed and received, from which location, and the time and duration.

The effort began as part of the Bush administration’s post-Sept. 11 programs of surveillance without court approval, which has continued since 2006 with the blessing of a national security court. The court has secretly ruled that bulk surveillance is authorized by a section of the Patriot Act that allows the F.B.I. to obtain “business records” relevant to a counterterrorism investigation.

Then also, MSNBC:

Referring to the National Security Agency’s surveillance practices as a “dragnet program,” the ACLU’s new lawsuit alleges that it is a violation of the First and Fourth Amendments.

“This dragnet program is surely one of the largest surveillance efforts ever launched by a democratic government against its own citizens,” said ACLU deputy legal director Jameel Jaffer in a statement. “It is the equivalent of requiring every American to file a daily report with the government of every location they visited, every person they talked to on the phone, the time of each call, and the length of every conversation. The program goes far beyond even the permissive limits set by the Patriot Act and represents a gross infringement of the freedom of association and the right to privacy.”

Google, one of the companies allegedly feeding information into the top secret PRISM surveillance program, is looking to clear its name. Tuesday afternoon, the tech giant requested permission from the FBI and Justice Department to reveal information about government information requests made of the company.

“Assertions in the press that our compliance with these requests gives the U.S. government unfettered access to our users’ data are simply untrue,” Google’s chief legal officer David Drummond wrote in an open letter to Attorney General Eric Holder and FBI director Robert Mueller. “However, government nondisclosure obligations regarding the number of FISA [Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act] national security requests that Google receives, as well as the number of accounts covered by those requests, fuel that speculation.”

Last week, Google and other tech companies denied that they had granted the FBI and NSA “direct access” to their users’ personal data, after former defense contractor Edward Snowden leaked some of the details of PRISM to the Guardian and Washington Post.

Each of the above links has multiple main story links, so go to original items for more.

Last item in this handful sampling; C_Net here, with headline and story start:

click the screencapture to enlarge and read

There is a petition. Track it dowsn on your own if you care to sign.

More: Strib here, MSNBC in more detail here, links here, Klayman and ACLU actions both reported here, and The Verge, here, this screencapture:

More: The Verge again, here; KOS linking to the ACLU press release and the complaint; Dan Murphey with the Monitor, here; and last, Ars Technica with its own added facts and thoughts.

Much more is online, but those are diverse quality links.

8:13 AM 6/12/2013
Latest from Guardian, here. Consider whether private sector businesses owe or should owe any duty to your government to snoop on you, for the government. Collapse it. Why would any sane person want the government spying on him/her? What good can come of it? What bad? Bottom line: Is your life's details something that a massive government data collection capacity should be mucking after, or should you be left largely if not totally alone by the snoops?

The Cincinnati Kid, redux, or how Flaherty arrived and explained and convinced.

Four links, Name that Grocer, visionary things and more; here, here, here and here.

Monday, June 10, 2013

Latest from the Chairman of Taxpayer League.

This link dated 6/7/13, this quote:

The race to replace Michele Bachmann in Congress officially kicked off Wednesday evening as Tom Emmer announced his candidacy.

Emmer is the first of what is expected to be many candidates on the GOP side of the ledger. On the DFL side, it appears no one wants the task of defending high taxes, government waste, Obamacare, government spying, gun confiscation, IRS tyranny, low job growth, and the exploding government debt to the good people of the Sixth Congressional District of Minnesota.

Because the Sixth leans GOP, the endorsement process promises to be a long and arduous process, as the candidates compete fiercely for the coveted GOP endorsement.

That's a good thing. GOP delegates, activists, and donors have to get this right. The MN GOP is in need of a comeback after the 2012 elections. The long endorsement process will provide for a thorough vetting process to shake out both the positives and negatives of each candidate.

This process should be a dry run for what will undoubtedly be a rough and tumble brawl for a rare open seat in Congress.

The emerging candidate should be battle hardened and battle tested by the time the liberals start carpet bombing.

This vetting should be a thorough no-holds-barred process. Why? Because we know the liberals and their wealthy benefactors will find these issues and spend millions to exploit them, spin them, and yes, even lie about them.

No issue should be "off the table" for any candidate because no issue is off the table for liberal special interest groups.

[...] Here are our 5 questions for Tom Emmer.

[...] 4. The GOP endorsed candidate will have a high profile role and a responsibility to help GOP candidates up and down the ballot. What is your plan to assist these candidates? What unique skills and experience helps you in fulfilling this obligation?

The Chairman seems to presume the insiders will be calling the tune, yet again. Being an insider, what would he like better? My crystal ball says, big clear letters, PRIMARY. The outsiders get a vote, how quaint. But only if there is a will among the office-lusting GOP CD6 politicians toward a primary.

Earlier, the Chairman wrote:

Since we're in regular contact with thousands of freedom loving folks across this great state, we know what you're thinking.

And you're thinking that Michelle [sic] Bachmann may be in trouble for 2014.

You're thinking that she has taken on water and may be taking on more, instead of bailing out the boat.

There's nothing wrong with having that conversation.

In fact, now is that time to start that conversation.

Silence masquerading as party loyalty is downright disloyal and is a form aiding and abetting our political opponents.

That kind of thinking has produced the disastrous candidacies of Tom Emmer, Kurt Bills, and Allen Quist (pick any campaign since 1983).

Look, this piece isn't some diatribe against Bachmann or an opinion piece that reaches any conclusions other than that the family would be well served to think long and hard about who is the best candidate to keep the Sixth Congressional District of Minnesota in Republican hands.

This link, dated 4/19/13. Neither a ringing endorsement of Bachmann, nor Emmer. At a guess, the Chairman favors either Rhonda Sivarajah, or Taxpayer League front-man, Krinkie. Not, however, Mr. Bills, or Mr. Quist. And an outsider's inference might be - paying out rope, to Mr. Emmer. Not a blind eye now to "disasterous candidacies," but paying out rope.

A link found by chance. I have not reviewed it and hence cannot endorse it. Some may find it interesting.

Here it is, view it at your own risk of being influenced in heart or mind. Or repulsed.

I only took a quick look at the homepage, and thought some might appreciate my posting the link.

ABC Newspapers has assigned reporter Eric Hagen to cover Ramsey events in the future.

The transition has been formally made, and is reflected in two recent Ramsey-related online items, here and here, each under Hagen's byline.

Each item is worth a reading by any Ramsey resident wanting to be well informed. Each speaks for itself without further Crabgrass commentary.

Here is a screen capture of the opening of Hagen's report of Sen. Klobuchar's Highway 10 visit.

click to enlarge and read, or see ABC original report

Sean Sullivan and conflict of interest allegations.

Sakry of ABC Newspapers, on May 15, 2013, wrote:

Although Sullivan’s withdrawal letter cites questions asked by Ramsey council members about possible conflicts of interest when it comes to the position with Ramsey and being a sitting Oak Grove councilmember, Councilmember Jason Tossey said there is also a conflict because Sullivan took a campaign donation from Ramsey businessman Jim Deal.

Taxpayer League Chairman Harold Hamilton and his tenant John Kysylyczyn of CD4 GOP and Anoka County Record website fame, have been propagating intense focus upon Sullivan, e.g., here and here. And, here. Initially, I believe, here.

My oh my. Conscious parallelism from within the same Micro Control building in Fridley can prove interesting, if not fully insightful.

From the reporting it does appear Sullivan had a conflict, owing dual loyalties, and still has one much as Elwyn Tinklenberg had while representing roadway grant solicitation responsibilities in both Ramsey and Hassen Township, and where only so much money was available and each project sought funding grants and awards. As with Tinklenberg's case, there was public awareness of the situation, and each employing entity had notice and waived objection. Public notice did rely upon reporting of things, much as with the McGlone-Flaherty employment situation which was, initially, an under-the-radar situation for much of the general public. Full public disclosure, especially when public officials are involved, is essential when trust in the political processes is a goal.

What's the story of Sullivan related events and potential fallout circumstances? Reader help is requested, via comments or email.

I have had emails forwarded to me, alleged to be the result of a data disclosure request related to Sullivan's Isanti employment, his Oak Grove council position, his removing himself from consideration as Economic Development head in Ramsey, and the fact Jim Deal, as any citizen might, gave the Sullivan for Oak Grove council election effort a contribution. What I infer from the thread is that the city staff is intent to avoid conflict of interest situations in the future, and to formalize a process including a disclosure form, for gaining full notice of actual, potential, or conjectural conflict situations.

The dimension of Jim Deal's political participation via contribution to the Sullivan campaign appears to not have crossed anyone's minds as material factual background for disclosure as part of Sullivan's applying for the Ramsey opening; until it was publicized by the Taxpayer League's Chairman and his tenant.

Best appearances would have a major vacant-land holder within Ramsey Town Center borders, along with the city's vacant landholdings, disclosed from the outset as a campaign donor; but things did not unfold that way with Sullivan ultimately staying put, both job-wise and on council in Oak Grove.

Having a forward looking thought process, how to better handle things in the future, is or should be the aim of all of us, going forward. However, campaign donations cannot be cause to deny a job applicant for a city position a shot at the job. Somewhat similar to the Deal-to-Sullivan contribution was that of Shane Nelson's $300 contribution to Matt Look's reelection campaign. The fact of that First Amendment exercise by Nelson, giving to a candidate of choice, should not have been cause to deny Nelson an opportunity to apply for the permanent city engineer position that was recently filled, should Nelson have wanted to apply, but it might have been properly considered as one of several facts entering into any employment decision of one or several council members. More importantly, it should have been a publicly disclosed dimension, were Nelson to have successfully sought the engineering post. The often stated aim of "avoiding even the appearance of impropriety" can be best fostered by public notice and awareness of such dimensions.

All the more reason for City of Ramsey to formulate as strong a conflict of interest avoidance and notice policy, and to implement such a thing ASAP. My hope would have been to have seen it a done thing already, since January 1 was months ago, and the new council members took office then at the start of this year. I.e., there were months already for the conflict of interest situation to have been tuned and tightened, but with an apparent lack of will even within the streamlining consultancy arrangements put in place in January having been finished but without conflict of interest reforms recommended. That said, THERE IS NO BETTER TIME FOR REFORM THAN THE PRESENT, GOING FORWARD INTO THE FUTURE. The past is as it was, the time to move is NOW, and clearly so.

8:27 AM 6/11/2013
Where to start an update? Harold Hamilton has been quite vocal, as with his dislike of anyone named Erhart. But seriously, should we take Harold seriously? This is the man operating via taxpayer league, and by personal means he has said is nobody's business but his.  His Taxpayer League has sued to not have to disclose its cash flows, and has used the Citizens United lawyer for his purposes of withholding sunshine from his contributions and other spending aimed at influencing the outcomes of elections. Yet he bitched louder and longer about Citizens for Responsible Government playing his game last election, and has been the key bitching point about Sean Sullivan having had campaign contributions from Jim Deal. Is that two-faced? You decide. Harold seems a scold who will tlurn a blind eye when it suits him. Ditto, Anoka County Record. What was their official view on the Flaherty-McGlone job arrangement? Deadly silent? Oh, my.

Jason Tossey did not like the Jim Deal contributions to Sullivan's Oak Grove campaign. Why not?

Sullivan's job in Isanti plus a council membership in Oak Grove is a more fundamental thing - an ongoing situation where if each town has road needs, applies for road funding help from bigger governments - county, state and federal level - and there's only so much money to go around, the conflict is inherent. However, should it be that a public spirited citizen cannot be candidate for an elective public service role, a council stipend not being a true "salary" in any sustaining sense, because of such an inherent conflict with a paying day job in another governmental jurisdiction?

There are good arguments either way, and our law - the law our officials are sworn to honor - is that it is a right to run for elective office, and a First Amendment "money talks" right to give to campaigns or outside election advocacy effort [PACs]. Jason Tossey is favorably inclined toward those calling themselves "Liberty Republicans" and he must intellectually square his worries about Jim Deal's campaign spending with the notion it is a fundamental Liberty in our system for Jim Deal to do what Jim Deal has done, elections wise, just as Harold Hamilton has the Liberty in our system to move and act and speak and publish as he has [directly or via surrogates]. Not that anyone has to listen or be persuaded, only that he's a right to his various soapboxes and we have our "grain of salt."

Now, that said, Randy Backous left a comment that deserves posting in the main thread where more may read it:

This issue is getting way out of hand. I can't be sure who knew what, or when they knew it, but I feel like I have to present my position in all of this publicly somewhere, if for no other reason than to preserve my own sanity. This desperate desire to find some sort of scandal in all of this is laughable. If this is all that the short-sellers can come up with, I think we're way ahead of the last council.

Make no mistake that I truly believe a conflict of interest exists in this situation. It is true; you cannot serve two masters. However, The City of Ramsey need not have been concerned with this. If any sane person would take just a second to stop and think about this, they would realize that the problem exists in Oak Grove, the city in which he serves as an elected official and on their EDA. If he were to have a prospect interested in both Ramsey and Oak Grove, where do people really think he would try to land them? In the city for which he serves as an elected official, or in the city which gives him a paycheck? Obviously, to preserve his livelihood he would be landing businesses in Ramsey in every opportunity possible. If I were serving on the Oak Grove City Council, I would be as concerned as they are. In Oak Grove it is an issue; here it is not.

Apparently he accepted a campaign contribution from Jim Deal. So what!? Don't we all accept campaign contributions? Does that call our integrity into question? Besides, in the event Jim Deal brought projects forward, Mr. Sullivan would not have been a decision maker. The City Council makes the decisions. I fail to see what campaign contributions have to do with anything.

The real issue here is the selection process and the way in which this information came forward. That is the real problem here. Scandal? No. Problem? Definitely. As the Chair of the HRA, I was not even aware that interviewing was taking place. Since this will be a dual HRA/EDA position and the bulk of the salary will be paid from the HRA, I felt it appropriate to be included. As the Personnel Committee Chair, Councilmember Tossey was also unaware. Worst of all, Mayor Strommen was not even aware. By the time I had found out and asked to be included, I was unable to fit the interviews into my schedule.

I don't believe there was any sinister plan to exclude any of us on the part of the City Administrator, HR Director, the EDA or anyone else. I truly believe it was a simple and innocent lapse in communication. The notion of a plot to exclude us is absurd. You can't slip something past a person who has to vote on the final outcome.

From what I understand, the conflict of interest issue was discussed and it was determined not to be an issue from Ramsey's point of view.

For the record, I was pretty upset when all of this came out and I had a pretty intense conversation with our City Administrator. I was one person who told him that I would not support the hiring. Unfortunately, I believe I may have been the tipping point which caused Mr. Sullivan to withdraw his name from consideration. After I had calmed down and thought about all the points I made above, I called Kurt back and told him that I would support the hire after all. By then Mr. Sullivan had already informed Kurt that he was withdrawing. It is unfortunate because I believe he would have served us well and he would have brought a lot of tax base into the city.

We did't cover up anything because we didn't even get a chance to discuss it. Had he not withdrawn, we would have discussed the issue in the Council meeting on camera in front of the residents. All of the points would have been out in the open.

I hate to disappoint but maybe if we keep working real hard we can create a scandal truly worthy of all this non-sense.

That was cathartic.

The mayor, in response to an email, emailed back:

We discussed conflict of interest policy at our last council worksession, so it is not on the back burner at all. We struggled a bit with purpose and how far to take this, but we had a good discussion with more work on the policy to come.

Unfortunately, work sessions are untelevised. Yet the fact of discussions happening is encouraging, in terms of ultimate policy making and setting of procedures. My thoughts to the mayor were in the main part:

If we are constrained to a "money talks" view of political contribution/actions having First Amendment dimensions, as the Supreme Court has held, then what's wrong with Jim Deal giving to a campaign? Or with Citizens for Responsible
Government, last election?

The same applies to Shane Nelson's giving to Matt Look's campaign while interim consulting city engineer for City of Ramsey per the then existing contracting out of engineering duties. He can participate in political giving as a right, and others can note and criticize or praise it. I also noted to the mayor that campaign financing cannot be too constrained, particularly for those believing in Liberty, the liberty to be an active part of the political two-party system we now endure as a nation and locally.

And, is it good policy to put constraints on that for public employees? The question arose when some Ramsey employees supported opposition candidates against incumbents, last election. They have that right, and would retaliation be too chilling a thing against basic rights?

With regard to such a conundrum, I wrote the mayor:

Flaherty giving a job is different, qualitatively, from contributing to a campaign of a candidate of choice. The gross directness of giving the spouse a job is intolerable. Why not suggest the council pose the question to the charter commission, as to what conflict of interest alternatives might be written into things at the charter level, what's better an ordinance, what's better as a set of regular initial training and audit procedures?

I make that suggestion as one recently appointed to the charter commission, where I believe two past candidates for council still serve, each with a legal training and experience, and each being aware of the Liberty dimensions that cannot be overly burdened.

The boxes of politics adage applies. The soapbox and ballot box, more than the jury box, are where conflicts should be addressed, with voters making choices where positions and actions have been aired in press and other outlets so that voters are informed of fact and opinion, with me saying some things and Harold Hamilton saying other things.

The question of what might be misdemeanor conflict of interest, a crime, is apart from what might be a subject of pro or anti commentary, with the ballot box being the arbitrator. Things short of criminal behavior, criminal conflicts of interest, may be the subject of voter and commentator disapprobation. The problem is the infrequency of having a ballot box chance to revise government. And what may transpire in intervening times. It is what we have, and there is only the soap box in the interim, unless litigious personalities seek out the jury box over perceived grievances. Hopefully, the last box, the cartridge box, seldom to never is at play.

WRAPUP: What Backous wrote makes sense. Some, outside of the direct process, made objection to the Sullivan situation, in ways that resulted in a resumed search for a Ramsey Economic Development department head on staff. Information flows re Sullivan were suboptimal. It is not as if the entire metro area will not present other sound choices for thew job besides Sullivan. I know Sean from his past service on Ramsey's staff. I like and trust him. But the process has worked out as it has. History is set even though opinions about it can be revised and extended forever. Moving on, conflict of interest policy still must be faced as an issue, and a person must be hired to an open and necessary job (with history teaching that using outside consultancies for economic development is an imperfect process when suggested as an alternative to hiring and supervising a staff person).

___________FURTHER UPDATE_____________
5:25 PM 6/11/2013
Thoughtful comments, especially when by public officials, often are posted via update rather than being left less conspicious. This, a comment so moved, by Jason Tossey:

I find the denial of a "scandal" perplexing. I am not sure who is uttering those accusations. Taking a look at the facts it is quite clear that not one elected official at the city of Ramsey appears to have conducted themselves in a scandalous manner. But what is concerning is staff's omission that Mr. Sullivan is a current council member of a neighboring city, and did take campaign donations from a Ramsey businessman while applying for a position in the city of Ramsey that has great authority over subsidies and low interest loans for Ramsey businesses. That is what borders scandalous, but most likely is nothing more than neglectful communication.

Based on this whole situation, I have decided that the position of Economic Development Manager lends itself to the perception of conflict along with the obvious perception of cronyism. Therefore, I will not support filling this position regardless who is offered the job. It is important to ask yourself if "pro business" is necessarily "pro-capitalism"? I do not believe that to be the case.

Some actual items provide me, if posted, might flesh out detail. However, enough detail is published in this post with updates.

Sunday, June 09, 2013

A lawsuit filed. Will the plaintiff gain the eight million dollars prayed for in the complaint?

A screencapture from here, explaining suit was filed, and summarizing the action; this screen capture:

click the image to enlarge and read

The complaint has been posted online, here. Have a look. It is a thirteen page complaint. It is not burdensome in length.

Reader help is needed. This is something I have not researched, while admitting quite a degree of ignorance about intricate details of FISA. If as it appears, this complaint is over a FISA court action, must the complaint be filed in FISA court with the issue to be litigated in secret, under FISA? And, if FISA requires that, is FISA constitutional or unconstitutional in denying an open public jury trial? With complaint page 13 stating, "Plaintiff reserves the right to move this Court to convert this Complaint into a class-action lawsuit," would class action status be appropriate or foreclosed for security reasons, per FISA? The Plaintiff does not allege a status of special surveillance target of the defendants; rather appearing to assert membership in a far larger class of those having due privacy swept up via a general and overbroad government dragnet approach to national security data gathering and winnowing.

As a guess, if there is any basis to claim jurisdiction rests solely within the FISA judicial structure and not within the general federal judiciary under generally applicable rules of procedure, government lawyers will be expected to so argue.

More FISA news, here.

This link. An emailed hit, from having set a Google Alert for "Larry Klayman."

____________FURTHER UPDATE__________
SacBee reports, June 10, it is a class action now, and Rand Paul gets mentioned, this quote:

The complaint, which can be found at, was amended yesterday in the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia. (Case No. 1:13-cv-OO851).

Importantly, and also yesterday on Fox News Sunday, Senator Rand Paul, a strict constitutionalist, expressed support for a class action lawsuit, obviously knowing that Klayman had already filed one since it has been widely reported.

"I applaud Senator Paul for effectively endorsing our lawsuit, and agree with him that it will serve as a vehicle to have tens and perhaps hundreds of millions of Americans rise up against government tyranny, which has grown to historic proportions. Even the New York Times has recently opined that the Obama administration has lost all credibility. For this venerable newspaper to make such a strong statement shows just how serious the Obama administration's alleged violation of the constitutional rights of citizens has become. For the issue of the preservation of civil liberties is not a left or right issue, but one for all Americans to rise up and fight for. We cannot allow a 'Big Brother', Orwellian government spy on the American people to access their confidential communications to effectively turn 'citizens into its prisoners.' That is why this class action lawsuit, which all Verizon users are welcome to join, no matter what their political persuasion, will serve as the vehicle for a second American revolution, one that is carried out peacefully and legally – but also forcefully. It now falls on a 'jury of our peers' to make sure that justice is done to end this illegal and coercive power grab - before it, like a malignant cancerous tumor, destroys the body politic of our great nation. Our Founding Fathers would be proud," stated Klayman.

Most of the SacBee text mirrors text here, the amended complaint being online, here.

From the Amended Class Action Complaint, this screencapture, red highlighting added, it being paragraph 96 of the complaint, with the amount prayed for amended upward to seek billions. Click the image to enlarge it to read:

The page count has been increased too, not by powers of ten, but approximately doubled, to now be twenty-four pages in length.

ECONOMIST cover - Those Brits, their sense of humor, of the absurd.

No, not the cover, just setting the table for it.

The meeting of east and west, despite Kipling.

But, back to the cover.

For those not knowing or previously not caring, ECONOMIST covers are online, here.

The latest cover on east meeting west, here; with Atlantic's editorial/news commentary about it, here.

Brokeback Summit? Again, those Brits, they are ...

The opening image suggests this meeting was with compact staffing and not something with a host of bureau personnel from each side cutting details of dealings into the future. Photo credit, the opening image is from Strib's carrying an AP story, here.

With China trade having more impact on the West Coast, see, e.g., here and here, for further AP reporting with each item terse but helpful.

A google.

Ars Technica, earlier this year, here.

Our government snoops spy on China, China spies on our high-tech firms, spies and lies and that as basis for a meeting of minds and an understanding among gentlemen? Go figure.

More stuff. Monitor editorials from earlier this year, here and here, and summit coverage, here. FEDCyber, here, here, here and here. There is, here and about. I never knew there was any such bureau, until it showed up in web search returns done for this post. TIME with a coverage slant. And full circle back to the Economist cover, and coverage.

_______FURTHER UPDATE_________
Another google; and Wikipedia.