Another G20 police state story: Queen man raided for Tweeting about what he heard on police scanner

Posted on October 4th, 2009 by bile
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FBI anti-terrorism agents raided the Queens home of a self-described anarchist charged with tweeting protesters with instructions on how to evade police at the G-20 summit.

A dozen gas masks, liquid mercury, backpacks containing hammers and anarchist literature were among the dozens of items seized Thursday at the Jackson Heights home where Elliot Madison, 41, lives with his wife Elena, 39.

Madison is free on bail after Pittsburgh cops arrested him on Sept. 24 and charged him with hindering prosecution, criminal use of a communication facility and possessing criminal instruments.

The two men were seated in front of personal computers and telecommunications equipment, wearing headphones and microphones and surrounded by maps, contact numbers and police and EMS scanners.

Cops claim they were using Twitter to direct the movements of protesters and update them on the location and actions of law enforcement.

But Assistant US Attorney Andrew Goldsmith argued that some of the items raised alarm, including a pound of liquid mercury in the house, alongside “books about poisons” and a microscope.

The feds also found metal triangles that are used to puncture tires and two boxes of ammunition. Goldsmith said agents left a collection of machetes, samurai swords and daggers at the house, because they didn’t fall within the scope of the search warrants.

Two whole boxes of ammo? The man was a real danger obviously. Anyone with a microscope certainly can’t be trusted. I feel so much safer now that Madison and his mercury is off the streets. Err… well I’m glad  his evil Tweeting ways have stopped. Listening to the open, unencrypted radio transmissions of the police and transcribing them to the Internet is a big deal… somehow.

At best this man abused the terms of service for the Internet access service provided by the hotel and that none of the governments business. This story is feels like something out of a dystopia police state story… perhaps V for Vendetta. I’m surprised they allowed for this to be reported on. Perfect scenario for their national security letters.

I guess these guys weren’t using TOR?

Intel fined $1.45b by European Union for “abuse of dominant position”

Posted on May 13th, 2009 by bile
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Although the Obama administration is indicating that it will be more aggressive about enforcing antitrust regulations, the European Union has been pursuing high-profile cases for years, having levied a large fine against Microsoft back in 2004, and hitting the software giant again last year. The latest target of the EU’s Competition group is the chipmaker Intel and, this morning, the EU announced that it too would face a hefty fine: slightly over €1 billion, which comes in just shy of $1.5 billion. Intel is already promising to appeal but, in the meantime, it’s going to have to drop over half a year of its current profits into a bank account in case its appeal fails.

The full decision, which is over 500 pages long, hasn’t yet been released to the public, but a summary of the EU’s case is available. It focuses primarily on the company’s pricing practices during the years 2002-2005, when Intel was facing growing competition from AMD in the desktop and server space. The EU authorities also cite an instance of similar practices in the notebook space in 2007, a time when that market was rising in prominence.

Read More…

The First 100 Days: 100 of Obama’s Lies, Blunders, Gaffes, and Abuses of Liberty

Posted on April 30th, 2009 by bile
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  1. Promising to “publish all non-emergency legislation to the website for five days… before the President signs it,” then breaking that promise over and over again.
  2. Despite promising to keep lobbyists out of his administration, Obama has broken his word again and again (making 17 exceptions to this promise in his first two weeks).
  3. Obama promised to eliminate income taxation for seniors making less than $50,000 a year. He has broken this promise despite numerous opportunities to keep it, including the economic stimulus package and his administration’s first budget proposal.
  4. The President also boasted during his campaign that “During 2009 and 2010, existing businesses will receive a $3,000 refundable tax credit for each additional full-time employee hired,” and has failed to keep his word.
  5. Obama made it part of his agenda to “allow withdrawals of 15% up to $10,000 from retirement accounts without penalty (although subject to the normal taxes). This would apply to withdrawals in 2008 (including retroactively) and 2009,” but didn’t include this measure in the stimulus package or his budget proposal.
  6. Obama broke his promise to recognize the Armenian Genocide.
  7. Obama did a shameless 180 degree turn on earmarks by sharply criticizing them (and bragging that he would pass legislation without a single one) and then signing a spending bill with literally thousands of them.

I’m completely OK with 7. Better the so call representitives waste the money than the executive branch. The collection, allocation and spending of the money in the first place is the actual problem.

This list isn’t bad. It stretches to get 100 things but much of it is reasonable.

NYC bar owner being harassed by NYPD after exposing bogus drug arrest

Posted on July 15th, 2008 by bile
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A Queens bar owner claims the NYPD is trying to run him out of business because he helped prove his patrons were framed in a fake drug-dealing sting.

Eduardo Espinoza, 36, of Elmhurst, was hit with more than a dozen violations from the 110th Precinct – including two for failing to have liquid soap and paper towels in his bar bathroom – after handing over a videotape suggesting undercover officers made up a buy-and-bust deal in his club in January.

“I been harassed so much, I’m selling my business,” said Espinoza, owner of Delicias de Mi Tierra on 91st Place in Elmhurst.

“Every two to three weeks, there’s cops in here, searching the bar. If there’s no violation, they’ll make it up. I lost all my clients – everybody’s scared to come in my place right now.”

Espinoza was working in his bar about 1:40 a.m. on Jan. 5 when undercover officers busted brothers Jose and Maximo Colon and friends Raul Duchimasa and Luis Rodriguez for allegedly peddling $100 worth of cocaine.

Queens prosecutors dropped those charges last week because of Espinoza’s security video showing that the undercover officers had no contact with them in the bar, Colon’s lawyer said.

Prosecutors and the NYPD’s Internal Affairs Bureau are investigating whether to bring charges against the officers. Investigators are also poring over the officers’ prior cases for signs of misconduct, sources said.

An NYPD spokesman said the department would look into the matter. But sources blamed the frequent police visits on community complaints.

Espinoza said he thinks police are retaliating against him because of a strange phone call he received shortly before the harassment began.

A man who identified himself as the officer who made the drug arrest in his club demanded to know if Espinoza had taped the events of that night.

“I said I already gave it to the defendants,” Espinoza said, “He said, ‘Oh s–t.’ He hung up.”

Espinoza, who has owned the bar for 2-1/2 years, said he’d gotten only two summonses before this year.

Most of his summonses have been tossed – including one for having an 8-foot neon sign without a permit, he said.

He’s still fighting a $2,500 fine from the Buildings Department for being overcapacity and a summons for ignoring police orders when he tried to park outside the 110th Precinct stationhouse last month.

“I knew they were innocent from the first moment,” Espinoza said of the framed men. “I felt so bad, I put myself in their shoes. Now [the cops] keep harassing me.”

Could have been predicted. And some wonder why more and more people are afraid of police officers.