The Attack on Truth

Last week radio and television show host Glenn Beck blasted Southern Nevada rancher Cliven Bundy after a video aired showing the cattleman making ‘bigoted’ and ‘racial’ statements about ‘the Negro.’ It was later learned the video was six-days old and released in time to deflect attention from a complaint filed against Senator Harry Reid by the Louisiana Republican Party.

“If he really thinks that slaves had a family life, just that (sic) shows you how unhinged from reality this guy is,” Beck claimed. “You’ve got to distance yourself, you must know who you are standing next to at all times.”

He was going by what he’d read in the New York Times and the accompanying video provided by the newspaper on their website. That video was so heavily edited, that the mention of ‘Mexicans’ and ‘Spanish people,’ was left out.

However, not once has Beck backed away from his criticism of Bundy, and though his comments aimed to warn Patriots and Minute Men about Bundy’s ‘wonderings,’ they had very little effect on supporters. And because of Beck’s vocal assassination of Bundy’s character, Conservative and Libertarian pundits around the country felt exceptionally free to pile on board with their criticism.

Then Tuesday morning, during his radio show, Beck told his audience, “This President is a slave…”

Now, this story could end here, and you could be lead down the same path Beck and other’s tried to get you to take with Bundy’s comments, but the truth always wills out in the end. There is more to this than what is pointed out in the above quote.

Beck and his sidekicks, Pat Gray and Stu Burguiere were discussing the speech Senator Ted Cruz made calling for Secretary of State John Kerry’s resignation after Kerry likened Israel to ‘Apartheid’ and of all the time to do so, on the eve of ‘Holocaust Remembrance.’ The conversation between the trio moved into a discussion about Ronald Reagan and the story behind how the iconic sentence, “Mr. Gorbachev, tear down this wall,” came to be spoken in June 1987.

It was during this part of the conversation, Beck stated our current president “is a slave…”

“(Reagan) was not a guy who was slave to the teleprompter,” Beck stated. “This President is a slave to the teleprompter. That’s all he knows. If it’s not on the teleprompter, he goes off. If he was off the teleprompter, we’d know at least who Barack Obama really is.”

There is no difference between what Bundy said last week and what Beck said this week, other than how its context is being presented. And this is where the disagreement with Beck and his comments about the stand-off between Bundy and the Bureau of Land Management can be found.

Beck and others fell directly in line with the Progressive primer “Rules for Radicals,” by Saul Alinsky. In the book, under ‘Tactics,’ Alinsky outlines a series of directives for disrupting an opponent.

In the case against Bundy, both the fourth and fifth rules were applied.

“The fourth rule is: ‘Make the enemy live up to their own book of rules.’ You can kill them with this, for they can no more obey their own rules than the Christian church can live up to Christianity,” writes Alinsky. “The fourth rule carries within it the fifth rule: ‘Ridicule is man’s most potent weapon.’ It is almost impossible to counterattack ridicule. Also it infuriates the opposition, who then react to your advantage.”

To put it in more practical circumstances, Monday evening, both ABC and NBC’s nightly news broadcasts trumpeted how Congressman Michael Grimm is under indictment for embezzlement and ‘kissing Congressman’ Vance McAllister isn’t going to seek reelection. But neither news agency mentioned the ethic’s complaint filed against Reid.

So we can either be divided because of such lopsided reporting by the national media, or we can do our own homework and seek out the truth behind stories presented to us.

Yurok Tribe to Reintroduce Sacred Condor

Prey-go-neesh

Yurok Tribal Elders signed a memorandum of understanding last month with state and federal agencies and a condor conservation group, allowing for test releases to if the Redwood Coast can support the birds.

Seven sites are under consideration on Redwood National and State Parks and private land within about 50 miles of each other, primarily south of the Klamath River. The first releases could come in the next one to three years.

Over the last five years, the Yurok Tribe Wildlife Program has performed studies to decide whether the endangered bird could be reintroduced back to the North Coast. Officials say Yurok land in Del Norte and Humboldt counties offers an “excellent” area for release because of lower contaminant levels in the region’s marine mammals, among other reasons.

To provide the greatest genetic diversity possible, birds would come from breeding programs in Oregon, Idaho and California, with the first releases coming in the next one to three years.

The large bird is sacred to the Yurok Tribe, whose history includes is stories of “Prey-go-neesh,” a condor that carries prayers to the sun. Regalia for the Jump Dance and White Deerskin Dance also rely on condor feathers, which are taken as “gifts” from living birds.

The condor once flew the entire length of the Pacific Coast from Mexico to Canada. Today there are 407 condors, including 128 in California.

The Unsustainability of Agenda 21

Think-Global-Act-Local

“Think Globally, Act Locally” isn’t just a slogan. It is a one-line manifesto for environmental purists, pushing Agenda 21 and it’s one of the greatest threats to U.S. freedom.

The United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs, Division for Sustainable Development created Agenda 21 as a mixture of socialism extreme environmentalism and anti-capitalism. The Southern Poverty Law Center recently complained Agenda 21 is losing public support because of several grassroots movements to end the program.

The report entitled, “Agenda 21: The U.N., Sustainability and Right-Wing Conspiracy Theory” points to a number of states planning to block some or all of Agenda 21.

“At least three states — Arizona, Missouri and Oklahoma — have considered laws, each of which passed one chamber of their legislatures, to halt the purportedly noxious effects of Agenda 21; Alabama went all the way, passing a 2012 law that was signed by Governor Robert Bentley. Major political battles have broken out over it in Georgia, Illinois, Maryland, Montana, Ohio and Texas.”

“Even the Republican National Committee, in January 2012,” the report adds, “denounced Agenda 21 as a destructive and insidious scheme to impose a socialist/communist redistribution of wealth.”

The United Nations program is voluntary and reportedly focused only on sustainable development, meaning in theory, it would abolish poverty and protect “fragile environments” by “properly” managing cities. And because the U.S. is only a signatory country, Congressional approval isn’t required, leaving the plan non-binding.

To overcome this, the U.N. created the International Council for Local Environmental Initiatives (ICLEI) to push their plan on the U.S. Now more than 1,100 large and moderate-sized U.S. cities support Agenda 21.

Because a majority of the unsuspecting American public is still-undereducated about Agenda 21, the ICLEI’s language, which on the surface sound innocuous, must be recognized.

Some of those words and phrases include: action, affordable housing, balanced, benefit of all, best management practices, collaborative, collective, common good, consensus, down-zoning, endangered species, environment, economy, equity, facilitator, friends of…, government-sponsored, historic preservation, hub city, in-fill, inter-disciplinary, international baccalaureate, invasive specie, multi-family, off-conveyances, old growth, open space, outcome based, protect, preserve, public/private partnership, quality of life, regional, renewable, restoration, sanctuary, school-to-work, single-family, smart, social, stakeholder, social justice, sustainable, traffic calming, up-zoning, vision, and watershed.

Along with Agenda 21s language, local officials, often at the urging of state government, revise laws to fit a “smart code” zoning template. These include things like: rezoning agricultural farmland and protecting residential conservation land by creating office parks; rezoning agricultural lands to prevent future subdivision by farmers; rezoning residential land to permit construction of affordable, multi-family housing units; and government funding to ensure healthier, balanced neighborhoods.

The over-all effect of these plans will create highly urbanized population centers throughout otherwise-rural counties, limiting the availability of land for suburban and estate subdivisions, which are considered a waste of land. Furthermore, federal and state agencies can deny grant funds to states and cities that do not adopt smart growth plans.

By do this, Agenda 21, in essence, forces zoning changes for lowering property values without compensation to the property owner. It also lets both federal and local governments to curtail the use of gas-powered engines, by restricting off-road vehicles and creation of bicycling and walking lanes.

For instance, the Lake Tahoe Regional Plan Update, “Mobility 2035, approved in December 2012, calls for a reduction in motorized transportation, creation of walkable communities, and alternatives to driving around the historic, tourist attraction.It also has a target date of 2035 to reduce greenhouse gas emissions using a $1.6 billion grant from California’s Strategic Growth Council

The SGC’s blueprint includes creating more biking and walking opportunities to help reduce of obesity and asthma, lower road infrastructure costs and greenhouse gas emissions as well as improve neighborhood safety.

“Implementing shared parking strategies can reduce the cost of infrastructure and maintenance for both local government and private developers while potentially increasing the profitability of a development project by allowing for more square footage of housing, retail, or commercial space,” reads the 2010 Governor’s Office of Planning & Research report. “Both of these examples have numerous economic, social, and environmental benefits.”

Also included in Agenda 21 is the outcome-based education system known as Common Core, which seeks to teach sustainable development, zero-population philosophies and the dangers of humans impacting the environment. It is designed to teach your child what kind of action should be taken globally, nationally and locally by the U.N., governments, and other approved groups.

To halt this planning, you must educate yourself, learning not only the language of Agenda 21, but also by understanding how it directly assaults the U.S. Constitution and your civil liberties, then speak out at your local planning meetings.

Linking the Bundy Tape to Another Reid Ethics Violation

It took six-days for the national press to release the video showing Nevada rancher Cliven Bundy ‘testifying’ about whether ‘the Negro’ or ‘Mexican people’ are any happier because of government subsidies. There is a reason the complicit media held that tape as long as it did.

They are protecting the Democratic Party – which should have received another black-eye, but didn’t. Instead the progressive media tried to discredit Libertarians and Conservatives by painting them as ‘racists’ and ‘bigots’ for supporting what amount to a fight over federal overreach.

The video hit the airways the same day the Republican Party of Louisiana filed a formal complaint with the Senate Select Committee on Ethics against Senator Harry Reid. The subject of the complaint was “Senator Harry Reid’s Use of Tax Payer Resources for Campaign Purposes” and deals with the use of Senate staff and facilities for support of political candidates and for campaign programs aimed against the Koch brothers with false and misleading attack ads in the last election cycle.

Chairman Roger Villere, of the LAGOP, sent a letter to the heads of the Senate Select Committee on Ethics — Senator Barbara Boxer, and Johnny Isakson — calling on the lawmakers to investigate whether Reid has engaged in “campaign activities using staff, equipment and facilities paid for with public funds.”

“Specifically, Senator Reid has violated Senate rules that prohibit Members of the Senate from using websites located on the Senate.gov host-domain for partisan political campaign purposes as well as the prohibitions regarding using official resources for political purposes,” Villere wrote. “Therefore, we respectful request that the Committee investigate Senator Reid’s misuse of taxpayer resources and sanction him appropriately.”

Reid is accused of using his official Senate website and Twitter account to attack the Koch’s, who are helping to finance TV ads against Senate Democratic candidates, including Mary Landrieu, and Louisiana GOP Executive Director Jason Dore says people have had enough of Reid.

“Americans are fed up with the type of hyper-partisan campaigning, and it is appalling that Harry Reid would use taxpayer resources to breach Senate ethics rules and pursue this kind of activity in his official capacity as Senate Majority Leader,” Dore said. “The Senate Ethics Committee needs to make clear this type of behavior has no place in the United States Senate and no one is above the rules, even the Senate Majority leader. It’s time Harry Reid is held accountable for his actions.”

Reid has criticized the Koch brothers on the Senate floor several times over the last few months, calling them “un-American” for spending millions of dollars on ads attacking vulnerable Senate Democrats for their support of the Affordable Care Act.

Reid spokesman Adam Jentleson said the GOP’s latest tactics show that Republicans have a “blind obedience to the shadowy, billionaire Koch brothers.”

“Republicans rushing to defend the billionaire Koch brothers is just further evidence that when the Koch brothers say, ‘Jump,’ Republicans ask, ‘How high?'” Jentleson said.

These new charges fall on top of allegations about the senior Nevada Senator funneling $31,000 in campaign money to Ryan Elisabeth for holiday gifts. It was ultimately revealed Ryan Elisabeth is actually Ryan Elisabeth Reid, the Senator’s granddaughter.

Reid decided after the allegations surfaced to reimburse the campaign.

“I thought it would be nice to give supporters and staff thank-you gifts that had a personal connection and a Searchlight (Nevada) connection, but I have decided to reimburse the campaign for the amount of the expenditures.”

Reid has also been in the news recently after stating that the ongoing struggle between Bundy and the Bureau of Land Management wasn’t ‘over,’ then calling Patriots and Minute Men who came to ranch to support the embattled cow herder “domestic terrorists.”

Federal Overreach from Sea to Shining Sea

water

The recent uproar over armed Bureau of Land Management agents descending on small ranch operation in Southern Nevada is shedding light on the fact that 40 agencies, including some not typically associated with law enforcement, have armed divisions. Agencies like the Library of Congress and Federal Reserve Board now employ armed officers.

Flashback to 2008, when then-presidential-candidate Barack Obama announced his plan to build a massive “civilian national security force,” claiming it would be just as well-funded as our military forces. Today, there are over 120,000 armed federal agents who work for those 40 same agencies.

Following the Bundy Ranch stand-off in Nevada, Texans are becoming concerned about the Bureau of Land Management’s focus on 90,000 acres along a 116 mile stretch of the Texas/Oklahoma boundary. The BLM is reviewing the possible federal takeover of privately held lands which have been deeded property for generations of Texas landowners.

Sid Miller, former Texas State Representative and Republican candidate for Texas Agriculture Commissioner, is making the matter a campaign issue.

“In Texas, the BLM is attempting a repeat of an action taken over 30 years ago along the Red River when Tommy Henderson lost a federal lawsuit,” Miller says, “The Bureau of Land Management took 140 acres of his property and didn’t pay him one cent.”

Miller is talking about the 1986 case where the BLM attempted to seize some of Henderson’s land. Henderson sued the BLM and lost 140 acres that had been in his family for generations and is now looking at using the case to claim an additional 90,000 acres.

When the BLM made the claim on Henderson’s land, their position was that Texas never had the authority to deed the land to private parties and it would fall under federal control. Since 1803 when the Louisiana Purchase was completed, there has been a controversy over the boundary between Oklahoma and Texas.

The boundary is supposed to be the vegetation line on the south side of the Red River. But the river has moved over time. And the BLM is trying to exploit this natural fact to seize the land.

In 1922, the U.S. Supreme Court attempted to settle the boundary dispute in Oklahoma v. Texas and declared the boundary to be defined by wooden stakes set on the river bank. That boundary apparently lasted no longer than anyone could expect wooden stakes to last in the shifting sands of a meandering river.

In 2000, Texas and Oklahoma’s legislatures agreed to a “Red River Boundary Compact” which defined the border between the states as the southern vegetation line. However, Congress must ratify agreements of this kind between the states according to Article 1, Section 10 (Clause 3) of the U.S. Constitution.

The Texas Farm Bureau produced a video explaining the problems left open by the current border definition from Texas’ perspective. The TFB claims Oklahoma believes when the river shifts south, the state line moves south.

But when the river moves north, the line remains in place. Meanwhile, as the two states squabble over the definition, the BLM is positioning itself to move in and confiscated all the land in question.

This federal overreach is not isolated to the lower 48 states.

Take the tiny mining town of Chicken, Alaska, home to 17 residents, which was raided by armed officers from the Environmental Protection Agency and Alaska Environmental Crimes Task Force in late August 2013. The two agencies claim they were looking for possible violations of the Clean Water Act.

The task force’s methods are being questioned by Alaska Senators Lisa Murkowski

“Their explanation — that there are concerns within the area of rampant drug trafficking and human trafficking going on — sounds wholly concocted to me,” said Murkowski.

“This seems to have been a heavy-handed and heavy-armor approach,” she added. “Why was it so confrontational? The EPA really didn’t have any good answers for this.”

The EPA continues to refuse explain why it used armed officers as part of what it called a “multi-jurisdictional” investigation of possible Clean Water Act violations.  The task force was made up of members of the EPA, FBI, Coast Guard, Department of Defense, the Alaska Department of Public Safety and Department of Environmental Conservation.

Meanwhile the EPA is in the process of seizing control over all private land in the U.S., following the United Nations blueprint, Agenda 21. Last Tuesday, the agency unveiled proposed changes to the Clean Water Act that will extend their regulatory control to temporary wetlands and waterways.

The new definition consists of any water, including seasonal ponds, streams, runoff and collection areas and irrigation water. It will also include runoff from watering your lawn, or puddles on your own property.

They are expanding the same kind of California fish-based drought or Nevada tortoise land restrictions or Oregon spotted owl ‘protection’ to every square inch of this nation. The EPA’s proposal extends their authority to include “pollution regulations” to “intermittent and ephemeral streams and wetlands” — which are created temporarily during wet seasons or following rainfall.

Their position is in direct violation of the Supreme Court rulings in 2001 and 2006, restricting the EPA to flowing and sizeable, “relatively” permanent bodies of water such as “oceans, rivers, streams and lakes.”  The proposed rule change is now in a 90 day comment period during which they will assess just how much they can get away with, based upon public outcry and pushback.

If this goes through, they will control your right to the water and your actions about water upon your own land, leaving them open unlimited abuse.

No Trust in a Half a Story

When I first read about this, I was sorely disappointed — Nevada rancher Cliven Bundy making offensive comments about Black people to the New York Times. But Progressives, Libertarians and Conservatives have been far to quick to jump on the statement, either blasting him publicly or back-off their support for the embattled cattleman.

Lawmakers who have in the past voiced their support for the rancher, including Senators Dean Heller and Rand Paul, have quickly distanced themselves from the comments.

“Senator Heller completely disagrees with Mr. Bundy’s appalling and racist statements, and condemns them in the most strenuous way,” Heller’s spokesman wrote in an email.

Paul’s spokesman said in a statement, “His remarks on race are offensive and I wholeheartedly disagree with him.”

Even die-hard supporter, Nevada Assemblywoman Michele Fiore got ahead of herself, posting on her Facebook campaign page:

“I strongly disagree with Cliven Bundy’s comments about slavery,” she wrote. “Mr. Bundy has said things I don’t agree with; however, we cannot let this divert our attention from the true issue of the atrocities BLM committed by harming our public land and the animals living on it.”

But there is one thing to consider before jumping ship – the article printed in the NYT and used as ‘race-bait’ by pundits and politicos, is out of context. Bundy said much more and not all of it is about Black people.

Bundy spoke at what appears to me to be an outdoor church gathering last Saturday, after all he had on what my Grandpa called ‘Sunday-go-to meeting,’ clothes.  Finally, after watching the three-minute, 13 second grainy video several times, I did what the rest of the media should have done and transcribed it in its entirety:

“… and so what I’ve testified to you — I was in the Watts riot, I seen the beginning fire and I seen that last fire. What I seen is civil disturbance. People are not happy, people are thinking they don’t have their freedoms, they didn’t have these things, and they didn’t have them.

Let me tell, talk to you about the Mexicans, and these are just things I know about the Negroes. I want to tell you one more thing I know about the Negro. When I go, went, go to Las Vegas, North Las Vegas, and I would see these little government houses, and in front of that government house the door was usually open and the older people and the kids — and there’s always at least a half a dozen people sitting on the porch. They didn’t have nothing to do. They didn’t have nothing for their kids to do. They didn’t have nothing for their young girls to do.

And because they were basically on government subsidy — so now what do they do? They abort their young children, they put their young men in jail, because they never, they never learned how to pick cotton. And I’ve often wondered are they were better off as slaves, picking cotton and having a family life and doing things? Or are they better off under government subsidy?

You know they didn’t get more freedom, they got less freedom — they got less family life, and their happiness — you could see it in their faces — they wasn’t happy sitting on that concrete sidewalk. Down there they was probably growing their turnips — so that’s all government, that’s not freedom.

Now, let me talk about the Spanish people. You know, I understand that they come over here against our Constitution and cross our borders. But they’re here and they’re people — and I’ve worked side by side a lot of them.

Don’t tell me they don’t work, and don’t tell me they don’t pay taxes. And don’t tell me they don’t have better family structures than most of us white people. When you see those Mexican families, they’re together, they picnic together, they’re spending their time together, and I’ll tell you in my way of thinking they’re awful nice people. And we need to have those people join us and be with us not, not come to our party.”

Then yesterday, Bundy spoke to radio talk show host Peter Schiff, setting the record straight about what the NYT’s had published.

“That’s exactly what I said,” Bundy stated. “I said I’m wondering if they’re better off under government subsidy, and their young women are having the abortions and their young men are in jail, and their older women and their children are standing, sitting out on the cement porch without nothing to do, you know, I’m wondering: Are they happier now under this government subsidy system than they were when they were slaves, and they was able to have their family structure together, and the chickens and garden, and the people had something to do?”

“And so, in my mind I’m wondering, are they better off being slaves, in that sense, or better off being slaves to the United States government, in the sense of the subsidies,” he added. “I’m wondering. That’s what. And the statement was right. I am wondering.”

It’s sad to think that so many intelligent people tend to believe the first thing they hear or read and never  look any further than what has been spoon-fed to them by a lazy press and political system that operates on half-truths. Only with ALL the facts can you really begin to know the truth.

Remembering the Dann Sisters

Dann Sisters

In order to know where we are heading, we have to remember where we’ve been. Thus, the importance of history.

The Bundy Ranch stand-off in Southern Nevada isn’t the first public fight over property rights in Nevada. A battle between the Bureau of Land Management and the Western Shoshone tribe in Northeast Nevada ended with far different results.

The Treaty of Peace and Friendship signed in 1863 between the federal government and the Western Shoshone tribe included the use of 43,000 square miles of territory extending north from the deserts of Southern California, across much of Nevada, and into South central Idaho, and East into Utah. The treaty gave Shoshone permanent use of land in exchange for “peace,” so that the “Union of the United States” in the midst of Civil War, could guarantee the flow of gold out of California to points East.

Shoshones agreed to end warfare with settlers and the U.S., and to allow transportation and telegraph wires through its territory. Shoshone say the 1863 treaty did not sell their land to a government, but instead secured their rights to own and occupy.

However in 1934, the federal government passed the Indian Reorganization Act, saying that federal recognition and support would depend on the creation of ‘tribal’ governments based on a model devised by the Secretary of the Interior. Unfamiliar forms of governance were then superimposed on traditional Shoshone decision-making, creating artificial divisions and aggravating existing disputes.

In 1946 an act of Congress created the Indian Claims Commission, to investigate suits by Native Americans against the US for illegitimate taking of their land. In 1962, the Commission ruled against a Shoshone suit, stating:

“The Indian title to the Western Shoshone land was extinguished by the gradual encroachment of settlers and others and by the acquisition, disposition or taking of said lands by the US for its own use and benefit or that of its citizens.”

In 1966, without the participation of the Western Shoshone people, the federal government arbitrarily set July 1, 1872, as the date of valuation for Western Shoshone land, and determined that compensation should be paid for 24 million acres.

The federal government paid the tribe $26 million in 1983 through a trust, or $1.08 per acre. Today the amount is $250 to $1,000 per acre.

Furthermore, the tribe has yet to draw on any of the money.

About an hour southwest of Elko, in Nevada’s Crescent Valley, the Dann sisters lived peaceably on a plot of land, raising horses and cattle. Unfortunately, their ranch butts-up against a large gold deposit.

The federal government permitted gold mining at Cortez in 1969. In 2010, the latest available figures, 1,140,000 ounces of gold had been removed from the land.

In September 2002, BLM agents swooped in and seized 227 cattle from their ranch, where the pair were raising cattle and horses on land purchased by their father Dewey Dann in the 1930s. In December 2002, the Danns were ordered to remove remaining livestock, 250 additional cattle and 1,000 horses, and they were charged with trespassing on public land.

They were served with $3 million in fines for past due grazing fees.

Carrie Dann says, “I was indigenous and in one single evening they made me indigent. If you think the Indian wars are over, then think again”.

The Dann sisters did not transfer grazing permits into their name from their late father, Dewey Dann. Instead, they argued that their land was within the boundaries of the Western Shoshone and therefore live under territory rule.

The federal government however claimed the land was public and purchased from the Western Shoshone in 1979.  The BLM, then served the Danns warrants, and followed through with their warning to auction off their remaining livestock in January 2003.

The sisters sued the BLM to prove rightful ownership of land, but watched as agents removed their cattle and horses on January 18th. The 9th Circuit Court of Appeals ruled that since the Danns received no money for their land, it was still theirs, but the ruling was overturned in the Supreme Court, using a “bar clause” stating that Indian Claims legislation denotes; when money is paid for land, its use and rights to use are forever barred.

According to the Supreme Court, the Shoshone land had been gradually encroached upon and it no longer belonged to the Dann Ranch.  Furthermore, the BLM claimed that the Dann livestock caused irreparable damage to the countryside due to over grazing.

“Grass grows back, but mining causes irreparable damage to the earth,” commented Carrie Dann.

Their struggle was the cause for a handful of protesters to fight along with the grandmothers, but their case also acted as a smoke screen for the what the government was planning. On September 24th, 2003, HR 884 made its way to the Resources Committee, which aimed to pay out Western Shoshone land for expansion of the Cortez and development at Yucca Mountain.

Shoshone tribe elders met in Washington DC one month earlier to at least place “hold” on the Bill, but their request was ignored.

Mary and Carrie Dann sued the United States government for violating their rights. The Nevada sisters said the U.S. used illegal means to gain control of Native American ancestral lands by slowly encroachment by industry and private landowners.

The U.S. government says it paid the Western Shoshone Nation for its use of their land in 1979, and has since privatized millions of additional acreage. The Western Shoshone Distribution Bill, HR 884, signed into law by President George Bush in July 2004, relaxes the territorial rules held by Shoshones for 150 years.

About 26 million acres transferred to the federal government and is ear-marked by the BLM for mining minerals, storing nuclear waste, and for geothermal energy production. This includes Yucca Mountain, a historical and spiritual area for Shoshones.

In the late 1970s the U.S. government started using Yucca Mountain as a repository for nuclear waste, but it since has maxed-out capacity with 77,000 metric tons of nuclear fuel and radioactive waste. All except 2 percent of U.S. nuclear waste was earmarked for Yucca Mountain with HR Bill 884, beginning in 2010.

The Obama Administration has since placed a hold on operations at Yucca Mountain, albeit for far different reasons.

Inter-American Commission on Human Rights found the U.S. government violated the Dann sisters’ rights, although did not state that the Dann sisters owned land. The Commission suggested an “effective remedy” should make sure respect for the Danns claim to their ranch of 70 years.

The Organization of American States human-rights commission reaffirmed land-rights use of the Western Shoshone Indian tribe, rejecting the federal government’s claim the Danns’ live on public land. It was the first time both councils charged the U.S. government with violating human rights.

Carrie Dann says she wouldn’t have sued the BLM had she known the court would favor the government.

The Dann sisters fought the federal government without the help from Human Rights Watch, or the American Civil Liberties Union. The two women committed themselves to preserving their ancestral land.

Mary died following an ATV accident on her ranch in central Nevada while repairing a fence-line on April 22, 2005. She was 82 years old. Mary’s niece, Patricia Paul, said her aunt had “died as she would have wanted — with her boots on and hay in her pocket.”

Two years later, Carrie was arrested with 38 others for trespassing at the Nevada Test Site at a Nevada Desert Experience event protesting governmental programs at the site. She continues with activities to try to end nuclear testing and programs at the site.

Carrie, along with Western Shoshone Defense Project and four other tribal and public interest groups, in November 2008, sued the federal government and Canadian Barrick Gold, seeking an injunction to stop the Cortez Hills Expansion Project on Mt. Tenabo, which the Western Shoshone also consider sacred land.

The case is pending.

U.S. Energy Plant Burns Fetuses for Fuel

fetus

“The lions may roar and growl, yet the teeth of the great lions are broken.” 3 Job 4:10 (NIV.) The 50 United States are those lions.

The Covanta Waste-to-Energy Facility in Brooks, Oregon is burning aborted babies shipped from British Columbia to generate electricity. The British Columbia Health Ministry admits that “biomedical waste,” including “human tissue” and “fetal tissue” are being disposed of through the energy plant.

This news comes on the heels of a report from England showing that the remains of as many as 15,000 aborted babies were incinerated by British hospital as a heating source. The aborted babies are incinerated as “clinical waste” in “waste to energy” plants at British hospitals.

Read Jeremiah 19:5 and see what the Bible has to say about this practice.

Gunplay Closes Reno Intersection

mill and kietzke

A busy Reno intersection had to be shutdown following reports of gunshots. Authorities say they came from a vehicle that drove into the lot and parked in front of the Corner Minit Mart at Mill and Kietzke.

It began about 7:30 p.m., when gunfire was heard along I-580. They were first reported by officers with the Nevada Department of Parole and Probation, who notified the Nevada Highway Patrol.

Three people are in custody. Its unclear what they will be charged with.

Reno police say no one was hurt and the roadway reopened an hour and a half later. Earlier reports of a standoff inside the mart are incorrect.

Ed. Note: My wife’s store, Port of Subs, is next door to the Corner Minit Mart. She was not there at the time and her two employees are okay.

Facebook and Harry Reid

Harry_Reid__Rubbing_Eyes_

Senator Harry Reid is getting slammed on his public Facebook page, following statements made about the Bureau of Land Management’s handling of Cliven Bundy’s Ranch.  Reid, who is tied to at least two financial interests in the BLM’s action against the cattle rancher, recently stated the situation is “not over.”

Since then Reid’s Facebook page, has been swamped by people who have very little nice to say too him or about him. For me, level of anger shown in regard to the Bundy Ranch situation provides a telling insight into the prevailing public sentiment.

A downtown tour of Las Vegas with Zappo’s Chief Exec Tony Hsieh, last Tuesday was met with less than 100 ‘likes.’ Many used the posting to express how they feel towards the senior Senator from Nevada.

“Creep! Creep! Go to jail….hang from the peoples rope,” wrote one man. “You are a criminal. I cannot wait until I hear the sound of your neck in a gallows.” Another, this one from a woman, was short and simple: “Harry Reid is a political terrorist.”

Unfortunately, it seems the social site is carrying Reid’s water for him now by censoring other sites.

Last Thursday, Fox News commentator Todd Starnes got tripped up by Facebook’ ever changing community standards.  His post was removed after he wrote something about Bundy’s cows.

“Rancher Bundy should’ve told the feds that those were Mexican cows – who came across the border illegally to seek better grazing opportunities. It was an act of love.”

According to Starnes, “I realized I had landed in the Facebook gulag when I tried to post our daily Bible verse.  However, I was unable to post anything because Facebook had taken great offense to something I had written.”

Starnes is quick to point out that Facebook has the right to censor him since it is their company but adds they should be unbiased.

“And while they may censor conservative and Christian postings, Facebook is quite welcoming and affirming to leftwing diatribes against Republicans, religion and the Tea Party,” he writes.  “I just wish the folks at Facebook were a bit more tolerant — and diverse.

However, Starnes isn’t the only online casualty of free speech and opinion. The group “Oath Keepers” found themselves offline after putting out a new call for more Patriots and Minute Men to come and stand watch at the Bundy Ranch.

“We need boots on the ground,” Oath Keepers founder Stewart Rhodes posted, “We want you here, standing watch, which is appropriate for us Oath Keepers since our motto is “Not on Our Watch.”

Since then the site has been re-activated and a new message sent by Rhodes, explaining what happened. They have since resorted to a back-up communications system at oath-keepers.blogspot.com.

The timing of these three events is curious — considering they all happened shortly after a call to action, on news and pictures showing the cows killed by the BLM and word of Reid‘s underhanded dealings with regard to the land.

A Quick Study of Jeremiah 19:5 and Today

jeremiah

Jeremiah was called to prophetic ministry around 626 B.C., where he wrote, “They have built the high places of Baal to burn their children in the fire as offerings to Baal –something I did not command or mention, nor did it enter my mind.”  Jeremiah 19:5 (NIV)

In the book of Jeremiah, the prophet was preaching judgment against Judah. Jeremiah was concerned about the nation worshiping Baal, the god of the rain, thunder, fertility and agriculture.

King Josiah began a religious reform in Judah at about 622 BC.  When Jeremiah received his call to be a prophet, he spurred Josiah’s reforms on.

But after the death of Josiah, Jehoahaz was placed on the throne but the Egyptians took him into exile after only three months. The Egyptians then made Jehoiakim king; he allowed the swift deterioration of Josiah’s reforms.

Many abuses had found their way into the life of the people. Outspoken heathenism had been introduced by such men as King Manasseh, even the sacrifice of children to the honor of Baal-Molech in the valley of Hinnom, and the worship of “the queen of heaven”

The Egyptians were eventually toppled by the Babylonians (present day Iraq) at in 605 B.C. The Babylonians then laid siege to Jerusalem.

Because the King failed to repent Judah was eventually sacked around 586 B.C., by the Babylonians.

From the time Jeremiah began prophesying to the downfall of Judah, only 40 years passed. The length of time becomes important when you learn that in March 2014 the UK Telegraph reported: The bodies of thousands of aborted and miscarried babies were incinerated as clinical waste, with some even used to heat hospitals.  At least 15,500 fetal remains were incinerated over the last two years alone while he mothers were told the remains had been ‘cremated.’

And while the above news story regards the spiritual health of Britain, the U.S. is no better shape.

A New Jersey family is suing the Matawan-Aberdeen Regional School District and its superintendent, seeking to have the phrase “under God” removed from the Pledge of Allegiance that students recite every day. A lawsuit filed in Superior Court in Monmouth County on behalf of the family, who wish to remain unidentified, and the American Humanist Association claims that the practice of acknowledging God in the pledge of allegiance discriminates against atheists, in violation of New Jersey’s constitution.

This should scare the hell out of you as it has me. Fortunately, there is still time to repent and turn back toward the Lord.

More Land Grabbing and Round Ups

The Laney Cattle Company in New Mexico has used public lands for grazing since 1883 and in 1986; the adjacent Diamond Bar Ranch was acquired by the Laney family. Now the US Forest Service says they’re no longer entitled to do so, and has posted notices along the fence line of their property advising people not to attempt to enter the ranch.

Originally, the Laney property was 115 acres surrounded by 144,000 acres of public lands for which Kit Laney paid grazing rights. But after a “study” by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service decided that the lands could not sustain his 1,188 head of cattle, the USFWS reduced his cattle herd to 300 head.

Then on April 12th, of this year, Laney was served with a notice that his ranch would be shut down within five days and his 300 head of “trespass” cattle removed from the land. Now they say that the cattle may be redeemed if the Laney’s pay the $40,950 cost of rounding up 80 head of cattle.

New Mexico’s “Brand Law” states that cattle cannot be transported across state lines without permission from the State Livestock Board. News reports say Catron County Sheriff Cliff Snyder notified the Forest Service the law will be enforced.

“I intend to enforce the state livestock laws in my county. I will not allow anyone, in violation of state law, to ship Diamond Bar Cattle out of my county.” Sheriff Cliff Snyder.

This comes just a week after Rancher Cliven Bundy experienced a similar situation in Nevada.

And it isn’t all about cattle and grazing rights either. Water is significant issue in for the Laney Cattle Company/Diamond Bar.

The courts have been siding with the USFS, stating that just because someone has been there a long time, doesn’t mean they have rights to use public lands or water. Laney attorneys used the Mining Act to show private rights to the water and land, but the court rejected the argument.

They are working hard to prepare their case for court yet again, this time with references to other cases, including the Wayne Hage decision from last year in Nevada.

There is also the endangered specie called the Gila trout. The same study by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service that showed grazing had badly damaged the wilderness’ streams and creeks, had also further threatened the fish.

In 2003, the Center for Biological Diversity sued the Forest Service. In their court petition, they argued that grazing has been ongoing for at least five months, in defiance of a 1997 federal court order against the same ranchers who illegally grazed these National Forests in 1996.

“These ranchers are treating our public lands like their private property and defying the courts, while their cattle are causing untold damage to wildlife habitat,” said Dr. Martin Taylor, a conservation biologist with the Center. “I saw cattle destroying the few pools where endangered Gila trout were still hanging on during one of the worst droughts in history.”

And just like in the Bundy Ranch stand-off, Laney found himself arrested and jailed for five months after assaulting a federal officer. The Denver Post wrote in 2005:

“When the Forest Service slashed the number of cattle he could run, Laney refused to sign his permit and grazed his cattle in the wilderness anyway. When the Forest Service hired contractors to remove the animals, he confronted them, charging them on horseback and whipping one man with his reins, according to an indictment.”

Lands are being seized, and animals removed one way or the other.

And in Wyoming, BLM agents rounded up 40 wild horses before turning them over to state authorities. At that point, Wyoming officials sold to a Canadian slaughterhouse.

The roundup, which happened about a month ago, concluded with the sale of more than 40 horses to the Alberta-based slaughterhouse, bringing in a total of $1,640.

And though wild horses are protected by federal law, the BLM contends these animals do not qualify for such protection. Instead, the agency claims they are strays — having descended from domesticated horses about 40 years ago.

Colorado’s Cloud Foundation. Paula Todd King asked, “How long does a horse have to live wild and free before its considered wild?”

King may never get an answer because of biodiversity and Agenda 21, which came out of the 1992 Earth Summit, officially known as the ‘United Nations Conference on Environment and Development.’ Proponents of Agenda 21 want more than 50 percent of the U.S. to be set aside as “wild lands”, where no human can enter.

Presidents Bill Clinton, George H. Bush, and Barack Obama, through Executive Orders, have signed onto Agenda 21. In fact, many National Parks already have UN signs at their entrances reading: “World Heritage Site and International Biosphere Reserve.”

Obviously, the BLM, the USPS and the USFWS all have more than just a public relations nightmare on their hands, they are a part of the nightmare befalling the U.S.

Gas Prices Up While Biofuels Fail to Make the Grade

gas prices

Nevada gas prices are on the rise reports AAA.  The average price per gallon for regular unleaded fuel is $3.50, up 17 cents from a month ago, although it’s still down from the same time last year when it was $3.83.

Reno drivers are seeing the most expensive gas prices in the state at $3.75 per gallon, while in Elko, prices rose by 5 cents to $3.64. In Las Vegas, the average price per gallon is $3.42.

AAA says gas prices are following their usual trend of rising in the spring and heading toward a peak in the summer. Prices are expected to rise in the next month due to seasonal refinery maintenance and a mandatory switch to summer-blend gasoline.

“There is a reason why we typically see gas prices rise as the weather becomes warmer. Each spring, refiners must start producing their summer-blend gasoline by May 1, and that process is well underway,” said Rolayne Fairclough, AAA Nevada spokesperson. “Additional additives are put into the gasoline to make it burn properly, so that it will meet clean-air standards. The cost of those additives is passed on to the consumer.”

Of cities surveyed in the Lower 48 states, the lowest price, $3.29 a gallon, was in Salt Lake City. Los Angeles had the highest, at $4.26. The lowest price in California was in Sacramento, $3.95, with Eureka coming in 16 cents higher.

However, the average price of regular in California is now $4.16, up 19 cents from two weeks ago.

Industry analyst Trilby Lundberg says the average U.S. price of gasoline has jumped 9 cents a gallon in the past two weeks, bringing the total increase to 40 cents over 10 weeks.

The average for a gallon of regular is now $3.69. Midgrade averages $3.88 and premium is $4.02, with the national average price at $3.49 per gallon.

Meanwhile a new study, commissioned by the federal government, says that biofuels made from the leftovers of harvested corn plants are actually worse than gasoline when it comes to global warming. The research published in the journal Nature Climate Change challenges the Obama administration’s conclusions that biofuels are a much cleaner oil alternative and will help fight climate change.

The study is being criticized by industry experts and Obama administration as being flawed. Both claim biofuels are better for the environment than are gasoline and corn ethanol.

A 2007 law requires they release 60 percent less carbon than gas to qualify as renewable fuel. They have struggled to reach the volumes required by law.

Reid Labels Bundy Supporters ‘Terrorists’

After the federal Bureau of Land Management agents backed down at the Cliven Bundy Ranch last weekend, ample evidence has surfaced indicating the standoff between the government and the Nevada ranching family is far from over. Throughout the weeklong stalemate, members of the Bundy family were physically assaulted by armed officers, numerous cows were shot dead, and protesters faced threats of gunfire for merely expressing their outrage.

Now Senator Harry Reid is escalating the war of words over the dispute, labeling the Nevada cattle rancher’s supporters “domestic terrorists” during an event in Las Vegas Thursday. During a ‘Hash tags and Headlines’ event at the Paris Hotel & Casino, Reid referred to Bundy supporters as “nothing more than domestic terrorists,” adding, “I repeat: what happened there was domestic terrorism.”

Reid was referring to the stand-off Saturday in Bunkerville where Minutemen and Patriots forced BLM agents to back down and release around 380 head of cattle belonging to Bundy that had been seized over the course of the previous week.

Reid claims Bundy views the United States as a “foreign government,” while accusing his supporters of goading violence.

“There were hundreds, hundreds of people from around the country that came there,” Reid said. “They had sniper rifles in the freeway. They had weapons, automatic weapons. They had children lined up. They wanted to make sure they got hurt first. What if others tried the same thing?”

Despite Reid’s characterization of Minutemen and Patriots as “domestic terrorists,” the only violence metered out during the dispute was when BLM agents tasered and assaulted them during an incident April 9th. Theirs is however, the matter of the killing of several cows by agents.

The BLM admits to slaughtering two bulls belonging to Bundy during their round-up of his cattle. The BLM claims the bulls “posed a safety hazard” but refused to elaborate. Bundy supporters have pointed to photographs which seem to show one of the bulls having suffered a gunshot wound.

Nevada State Assemblywoman Michele Fiore tweeted photos showing federal agents did much more than herd hundreds of cows away from Bundy Ranch in Clark County, Nevada, before backing down. The graphic images are proof that multiple head of cattle were slaughtered, apparently under the direction of BLM agents.

“They had total control of this land for one week, and look at the destruction they did in one week,” said Corey Houston, friend of the Bundy family. “So why would you trust somebody like that? And how does that show that they’re a better steward?”

The photos show the dead and decaying cattle, offering little room for speculation beyond the assumption that BLM agents were complicit in their deaths. Some close-up shots show the entrance point of wounds that took down the family’s livestock.

Cliven Bundy’s son Ryan shared video on FOX News of what he believed to be a mass grave dug by the government. He noted that at least one dead cow could be seen in the 18-by-45 foot area.

Officials have yet to comment on the video.

Amy Lueders, the Nevada state director for the BLM, said the agency does have a “protocol,” but would not release any numbers for animals they have found dead or that they have euthanized.

“In terms of the number that we’ve found, animals who are, I think, deceased on the range, or if we’ve had to euthanize an animal, we don’t have an answer to that question at this time,” Lueders said. “We will euthanize an animal during the impoundment if they show dangerous characteristics, threaten the health and safety of the employees, display a hopeless prognosis for life.”

“So, we do have a protocol in terms of when we would euthanize animals,” she added. “But we don’t have any answers at this time in terms of the numbers.”

Finally, notice the glaring hypocrisy of animal rights groups, like ‘People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals,’ who, at this point, have remained largely silent about allegations of cattle mistreatment on the ranch by federal forces. As search of their national website yields nothing about the cruelty inflicted on the Bundy Ranch cattle.

Immediately after what many considered a victory against a tyrannical federal agency, a number of Progressive voices — including Reid — indicated the action against this family will continue.

In response, Texas Congressman Steve Stockman sent a letter to Barack Obama, Department of the Interior Secretary Sally Jewell, and BLM Director Neil Kornze, laying out his position that any such action by the agency would violate the U.S. Constitution.

“Because of this standoff,” he wrote, “I have looked into BLM’s authority to conduct such paramilitary raids against American citizens, and it appears that BLM is acting in a lawless manner in Nevada.”

He cited the limited powers granted to the federal government, noting the bureau has no “right to assume preemptory police powers, that role being reserved to the States,” and explained “many federal laws require the federal government to seek assistance from local law enforcement whenever the use of force may become necessary.”

The letter included a section of the U.S. Code — 43 U.S.C. Section 1733, Subsection C — stating exactly that point: “When the Secretary determines that assistance is necessary in enforcing Federal laws and regulations relating to the public lands or their resources he shall offer a contract to appropriate local officials having law enforcement authority within their respective jurisdictions with the view of achieving maximum feasible reliance upon local law enforcement officials in enforcing such laws and regulations.”

In the case of the Bundy Ranch, he continued, “the relevant local law enforcement officials appear to be the Sheriff of Clark County, Nevada, Douglas C. Gillespie.”

Gillespie, however, conspicuously took a back seat to BLM forces during the standoff.

“Indeed,” Stockman wrote, “the exact type of crisis that the federal government has provoked at the Bundy ranch is the very type of incident that Congress knew could be avoided by relying on local law enforcement officials.”

The stated purpose of the correspondence is for the Obama administration “to bring the BLM into compliance with 43 U.S.C. Section 1733.”

Absent a full investigation into the agency’s actions, he concluded, “the federal government must not only stand down, but remove all federal personnel from anywhere near the Bundy ranch.”

Legislators and law enforcement personnel have stood alongside state militia members and the Bundy family in opposing the excessive force employed by the BLM. Stockman’s letter adds even more weight to the growing sentiment against the federal overreach.

No matter where you stand on the Bundy issue, Reid’s characterization of American protesters as “domestic terrorists” is chilling and a massive backlash is almost certain to follow.

It also fits the narrative that the federal government has been pushing for years through literature such as the Missouri Information Analysis Center report, which framed Ron Paul supporters, libertarians, people who display bumper stickers, people who own gold or even people who fly a U.S. flag, as potential terrorists. In 2012, a Homeland Security study was leaked characterized Americans who are “suspicious of centralized federal authority,” and “reverent of individual liberty” as “extreme right-wing” terrorists.

Reid attracted controversy late last week when he promised that the BLM’s fight with Bundy was “not over”. The Nevada Senator was hit with accusations of cronyism after his former staffer Neil Kornze was confirmed as the new BLM director earlier last month.

Reid is obviously angry after his complicity in the siege against the Bundy family was exposed and became a viral story. Although many news outlets claimed this issue was “debunked,” Reid’s involvement in a solar farm just 35 miles from Bundy’s ranch is well documented.

Archived files which were also deleted from the BLM’s own website confirmed that confiscating Bundy’s cattle was necessary in order to clear the way for lucrative solar deals with transnational corporations.

In 2003, the Nevada Democrat publicly banned relatives from lobbying him or his staff after newspaper reports showed that Nevada industries and institutions routinely turned to Senator Harry Reid’s sons or son-in-law for representation. Then in 2007, after a controversy over the number of lawmaker relatives engaged in lobbying, Congress passed the ‘Honest Leadership and Open Government Act,’ sharply restricting the lobbying activities of close relatives of members of Congress.

Most people in Nevada though have come to understand that such laws don’t apply to Harry Reid.  Such appears to be the case of a planned solar power plant that had been backed by the senior statesman.

That plan is now defunct, but it was for a lack of trying on Senator Reid’s part.

Reid and his son, Rory, were both deeply involved in a deal with the Chinese-owned ENN Energy Group to build a $5 billion solar farm in Laughlin, Nevada. That’s about 177 miles away from Bundy’s ranch in Bunkerville, Nevada, and 213 miles from the Gold Butte area located in what local’s call the ‘Nipple of Nevada,” and where Bundy ‘s cattle graze.

Rory began to working for the Las Vega law firm representing ENN in 2011. The Chinese company eventually shelved the project in June 2013 after it failed to find a customer. This, despite the pressure applied by the senior Reid on Nevada’s chief electricity provider to get behind the project.

Reid said the complex “would start tomorrow if NV Energy would purchase the power,” but the company “has not been willing to work on this and that’s such a shame.”

His remarks were the linkage between the Nevada utility and the clean energy project. Previously, the project was aimed at serving utilities in California, where state officials now say they have no interest in importing power from other states.

Reid indicated there have been overtures to gauge NV Energy’s interest in buying power from the Laughlin venture. He characterized NV Energy’s response as “weak excuses,” including what he described as the utility’s doubts that the Nevada Public Utilities Commission would approve the purchase.

“NV Energy is a regulated monopoly,” Reid claimed. “They control 95 percent of all the electricity that is produced in Nevada and they should go along with this.”

NV Energy spokeswoman Jennifer Schuricht said the utility is not in the market for more renewable energy at this time, having exceeded the state’s requirement that 15 percent of its portfolio originate from clean sources. The company does not plan to issue new requests for power until sometime this year and in 2015, and will do so through competitive bidding.

“NV Energy would certainly welcome a bid from ENN when we issue the next RFP (request for proposals), and their success, like all other projects, would be dependent on the benefits, especially price, that they can demonstrate for the customers of NV Energy,” Schuricht said in a statement.

This isn’t the first time Reid has sought to influence NV Energy on clean energy policy. In a televised interview in April 2012, Reid said he did not believe the utility had “done enough to allow renewable energy to thrive” in Nevada.

As Reid embraced renewable energy in his vision for Nevada and sought to recruit investors, he fought NV Energy plans for a $5 billion coal-fired plant in Ely. That project was shelved in 2009.

Reid has also played a key role in introducing Nevada to ENN, a Chinese conglomerate looking to invest $8 billion in U.S. clean energy over the coming decade. Reid has toured ENN facilities in China, and its chairman, Wang Yusuo, spoke at Reid’s annual clean energy summit in August 2012 at the Bellagio in Las Vegas.

Along with the solar power plant connection there’s Interstate 11, which would link Las Vegas with Phoenix. In a statement, Reid said that by connecting two of the largest cities in the southwestern U.S. would create jobs, increase commerce and boost tourism to Nevada.

“For years, I have worked with local stakeholders to make Interstate 11 a reality,” he said. “I fought long and hard to get this provision included in the transportation bill and I am pleased the House agreed to keep my Senate provision.”

Most of I-11’s proposed route in the Las Vegas Valley has already been constructed as I-515 from Railroad Pass to Las Vegas, passing through Henderson, Paradise, and Winchester.  The highway would overlap and replace existing I-515 in Las Vegas, U.S. Route 93 from Boulder City, Nevada to Kingman, Arizona.

Harry Reid owns a major tract of land in Bullhead City, which is only 36 miles away. And as many rural Nevadans understand, Harry doesn’t do or say anything unless it is financially helpful to him or his crones.

Gunning for Your Guns

Recently I posted through several social media outlets:  “After what happened in Bunkerville, Nevada this weekend, expected an all-out Progressive assault on the Second Amendment and your guns.”

This was in reference to the Bundy/Bureau of Land Management stand-off in Southern Nevada near Las Vegas. I made the comment after the BLM blinked during a stare down with hundred’s armed Minute Men and Patriots.

My prediction didn’t take long to come to fruition…

Former New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg says he’s going spend $50 million to build a “nationwide grass-roots network to motivate” anti-gun voters. The billionaire wants to create the anti-Second Amendment version of the National Rifle Association and eventually overpower the NRA.

Bloomberg says gun control advocates should learn from the NRA. His plan calls for a restructuring of the gun control groups he funds, which include, “Mayors Against Illegal Guns” and “Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America.”

“We’ve got to make them afraid of us,” Bloomberg told the New York Times.

The New York State Rifle and Pistol Association saw its membership nearly double last year to more than 41,000 following passage of the Secure Ammunition and Firearms Enforcement Act of 2013. The SAFE Act, pushed through the Legislature less than a month after the Sandy Hook elementary school massacre, requires owners of newly banned assault weapons to register them with police.

In Connecticut, a similar registration requirement for ‘assault’ weapons went into effect on December 31st. An estimated 50,000 weapons have been registered so far; a number that authorities estimate is just 15 percent of the total.

On the upside, the Arizona Senate has given initial approval to five major pro-gun bills which allows concealed-carry permit holders to bring weapons into government buildings that don’t have security measures. A second one imposes fines on cities, towns and their lawmakers who enforce gun ordinances stricter than the state’s own laws.

Another bill allows authorities to charge a person with aggravated assault who’s accused of taking a gun away from someone else. And the fourth bill and would ban cities, counties and towns from restricting the shooting of guns on private property.

The final bill will speed up the certification process for high-caliber firearms for private citizens. Weapons like machine guns must get approval by the U.S. Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, but a local law enforcement agency must first conduct a background check before an applicant can ask  for ATFE approval. Under the bill, officers would be required to either certify or deny a weapon within 60 days.

The Senate must still cast a roll-call vote on all bills.

A Purge is a Holocaust by Any Other Name

Crimea leaflet-Jews

There is another Holocaust coming, I fear and it seems the current administration will do nothing to stop it. This is something I predicted shortly after President Obama was reelected.

It caused one hell of a fight between me and a friend that I used to work with at the radio station. I claimed a ‘purge’ was on the horizon, he severely disagreed to the point we nearly came to blows.

“Jews in the eastern Ukrainian city of Donetsk where pro-Russian militants have taken over government buildings were told they have to ‘register’ with the Ukrainians who are trying to make the city become part of Russia. Jews emerging from a synagogue say they were handed leaflets that ordered the city’s Jews to provide a list of property they own and pay a registration fee ‘or else have their citizenship revoked, face deportation and see their assets confiscated’,” reports USA Today.

This is what the  National Socialist German Workers’ Party (better known as the Nazi’s) did before they began exterminating people. It’s also what happens when there isn’t a STRONG American influence to stabilize the world.

Identifying a Thug

michael roop

Michael Roop works for the Bureau of Land Management in Portland, Oregon, and one of the many federal agents surrounding Cliven Bundy’s ranch near Bunkerville, Nevada. He is a thug in my opinion.

Roop is the officer who threw 57 year old Margaret Houston to the ground. She had her back to him and never knew it was coming.

One Man Dead and Human Shields

Richard Mack

Two Bureau of Land Management rangers were placed on routine administrative leave in February of this year after a man was shot and killed on State Route 159 near Calico Basin, east of the Las Vegas Strip after he reportedly threatened to shoot the rangers.

In a statement issued by the BLM, rangers responded after receiving multiple calls about a man wandering in and out of the road. Once there, they ordered D’Andre Berghardt Jr. to get out of the road, but claimed he began resisting their commands.

Berghardt was tasered, pepper sprayed and a struck with baton, but failed to comply with directions. He then tried to get into two occupied cars parked along the road.

When that failed he climbed into Nevada Highway Patrol Trooper Lucas Schwarzrock’s still running cruiser and reached for the rifle contained in a firearms safety rack, the report said. A video post on the Las Vegas Review Journal shows one ranger shooting Berghardt inside the patrol car multiple times.

“Dude, they just shot him. They just killed the dude,” says a voice on the video.

Berghardt was struck nine times and pronounced dead at the scene. The BLM did not name the two rangers involved, saying only they “have a combined 26 years of law enforcement experience.”

While the shooting did not occur anywhere near last weeks stand-off between rancher Cliven Bundy and the BLM, Utah State Legislator Mike Noel wants to know why BLM rangers are being allowed to patrol state highways. Last year Noel sponsored Utah HB155, limiting BLM and U.S. Park from exercising police power over state and local laws unless someone’s safety is at risk or federal contracts are in place with local police agencies.

“You cannot use our (laws) to arrest our people and issue citations,” Noel said during debated over the proposed bill. “We don’t believe they ever had that authority. Our chief law enforcement officer is the locally elected sheriff who is accountable to the people every four years.”

However the trouble isn’t all one-sided.

Former Graham County Arizona Sheriff Richard Mack on Monday said he and other organizers who traveled to Nevada to support Bundy during the dispute with the feds planned to put women on the front lines in case the “rogue federal officers” started shooting. He made the claim in a video aired on Fox News’ “The Real Story” following the standoff.

“We were actually strategizing to put all the women up at the front,” he said. “If they are going to start shooting, it’s going to be women that are going to be televised all across the world getting shot by these rogue federal officers.”

In the end – bad is bad. But unlike the media’s portrayal of those who faced off with the federal government, not all the Minute Men and Patriot’s present were ‘eager’ to shed theirs or anyone else’s blood.

However, there were some among that crowd who were not there simply to show support for Cliven Bundy. Those were the one-percent who taunted and yelled obscenities at BLM rangers.

Otherwise, this was a mostly disciplined and yet not a very organized group, who faced possible death, had the situation gone bad, who believe they were standing on Constitutional principal. And despite what many media figures are saying, it was the outcome that mattered, and that outcome is the backing down of a government that often times anymore is more tyrannical than that of laws.

As one Libertarian TV and radio commentator has been quick to point out this week as he condemns those who were in attendance: “Which path do you choose: One of violence or one of peace with God?”

He must have forgotten what Mark 11:15-16 (NIV) reads: “On reaching Jerusalem, Jesus entered the temple courts and began driving out those who were buying and selling there. He overturned the tables of the money changers and the benches of those selling doves, and would not allow anyone to carry merchandise through the temple courts.”

My opinion is this – lay aside your arms and instead lock your arms with one another and show strength through peace. An ‘American Spring,” though it sounds good, will not turn out well.

Spanish Springs Church Vandalized

Spanish Springs LDS Church

There are creeps in every neighborhood, whether they live here or not. The church, jus’ around the corner from my home on Mercedes Drive in Spanish Springs, was vandalized by taggers who spray painted their ignorance all over the sanctuary.

The vandals left more than 40 tags on the exterior of the Jesus Christ Church of Latter Day Saints, concentrating on the back of the church, away from street view and bright lights. It’s the second time in less than two month.

After seeing the damage, I offered to strap on my pistol and patrol the area overnight, but was told it wasn’t necessary. I was informed and rightly so, “We’re turning the other cheek.”

Sometimes, I’m not sure if I’m more of a Christ-follower or a Marine.

Rory Reid calls Bundy and BLM Losers

Las Vegas KSNV-TV anchor Jeff Gillan moderates a weekday program called, “What’s Your Point.”  The program features Senator Harry Reid’s son, Rory.

GILLAN: “By now, the BLM backed down and cancelled its roundup of Bundy’s so-called trespassed cattle worried about the potential for violence between its officers and Bundy’s supporters. So that leaves Bundy, the militia members, conservative lawmakers, and everybody else that came to his side, savoring victory today. The question is, what kind of victory? The BLM says it will pursue other action against him to collect hundreds of thousands of dollars in grazing fees he’s refused to pay since 1993. You know, this thing escalated and we were all wondering what’s going to happen. You had guys with guns running around everywhere on both sides. What’s your take away on this?”

RORY: “Let’s talk about the winners and the losers.”

GILLAN: “OK.”

RORY: “Why don’t we start with the losers?”

GILLAN: “OK.”

RORY: “Let’s start with Cliven Bundy himself. He is not the victim and he is not a hero. The facts aren’t in dispute. He’s been using land that he doesn’t own for over 20 years and he didn’t pay. He broke the law. There are hundreds of ranchers throughout Nevada that conduct their profession honorably. There’s thousands of them throughout the country and when they have a dispute with the BLM they try to work it out.”

GILLAN: “Why is he not a winner? I mean, he gets his cattle; they backed off on the roundup. I mean, at first blush you say hey, he kind of exited here OK.”

RORY: “I think most people care about their reputation, and I think he’s been exposed as somebody who broke the law. The Nevada Cattleman’s Association — which is the trade organization that advocates for cattlemen in the state of Nevada — not even they support Cliven Bundy at this point. We believe in a country in which we are subject to laws and you can’t just ignore the laws that we don’t like. And I think clearly if state and local prosecutors look at this more closely, they’re going to find that he broke the law and he should be prosecuted.”

GILLAN: “Who else lost?”

RORY: “I think the BLM lost. The BLM shouldn’t have started this if they couldn’t develop a plan to finish it successfully. Now, I can understand why they suspended the operation; no trespassed cow is worth somebody getting hurt. But the First Amendment zones they created were ridiculous. They tried to block off too large of a piece of land. And they’ve successfully conducted these impoundments in three Nevada counties, in Elko, Eureka County in the past. But they just didn’t finish this one well.

GILLAN: “They also came in with a — well, what critics would say is a heavy-handed law enforcement presence here. You know, John Ralston did a good interview with Bob Abbey who is the former national director and state director of the BLM who felt the same thing, that look, I mean, he feels that the taxpayers are the ultimate losers because you’re not getting the grazing fees that you’re owed.”

RORY: “That’s true.”

GILLAN: “But the BLM really kind of overplayed their hand in this in some ways

RORY: “I don’t think there’s any way to look at this and say that they were a winner here. They were a loser.”

Two Missing Women in Humboldt County, California

missing girls

Meanwhile investigators are treating the site of a Bridgeville cabin fire as a crime scene after human remains were discovered in the charred wreckage. The property owner found a manmade pond, felled trees and a marijuana grow on his property along with the remains.

Humboldt County Sheriff’s Office said the cause of death is “unknown at this point,” but they’re “treating it as a homicide investigation” until the coroner’s report is completed.

Deputy Coroner Charles Van Buskirk said it is “too premature at this point” to identify the gender of the victim, but said the remains belonged to an adult.

“We have someone we believe it is,” Van Buskirk said, “I have not spoken to the parents of the person who we think it is yet. It could take two to three months to test the DNA samples.”

Nevada’s GOP Changes It’s Platform While Looking to Host Convention

The Nevada Republican party voted to remove its opposition to gay marriage and its pro-life stance from the party platform. State party Chairman Michael McDonald said he was pleased with the outcome of the vote.

“I think it was about inclusion, not exclusion,” he said about the platform. “This is where the party is going.”

A party committee proposed a new party platform without a stance on the two social issues, after the Clark County, GOP voted to remove them earlier in April.

The old party platform in Nevada defined marriage as between a man and a woman and stated that the party was “pro-life,” both of which were removed from the official platform.

Nevada Republicans say they felt it was time for the party to step away from some social issues, especially after numerous court rulings striking down state bans on same-sex marriage.

“The issue was how can we back out of people’s personal lives,” Dave Hockaday, a member of the platform committee, said. “We need to focus on issues where we can have an impact.”

Las Vegas advanced another step on Wednesday in its bid to showcase the Republican Party and itself by hosting the 2016 Republican National Convention.

The Republican National Committee announced the Nevada city as one of six that have made the next cut as judged by a 13-member site selection committee that heard bidder presentations last month in Washington.

Besides Las Vegas, cities still in are Dallas, Kansas City, Denver, Cleveland and Cincinnati, officials said. Phoenix and Columbus, Ohio, were eliminated. The next step is for a scout team of Republican National Committee staffers to visit the selected cities later this month or early in May, part of what the party officials said will be a more in-depth and technical review of each city’s bid.

The staff will look at financing, proposed convention venues, hotels and media work space.

An announcement of which cities will receive formal site visits from the full site selection committee will be made after the party’s spring meeting May 6-10 in Memphis, Tenn. Site visits would take place later that month or in early June.

Republican officials said a site decision is expected in late summer or in the fall. The party is considering the weeks of June 27 or July 18 for the 2016 convention, which would bring up to 50,000 people to the chosen city as Republicans officially nominate their choice for president and seek to catapult that candidate into the fall.

While a major and complex undertaking, holding the national convention also is expected to produce a boon for the host city, with party officials estimating its value to the local economy about $400 million.

Lt. Gov. Brian Krolicki said Mickelson told him in a phone call that Las Vegas was still in the running and the Republicans want to take a closer look. No date has yet been set for the visit by evaluators nor how long they would spend in the city.

“They think enough of us to move us forward in the process, and we are delighted,” said Krolicki, chairman of the Nevada Host Committee. “I think they will understand when they have a chance to kick our tires how extraordinary this place will be should they wish to bring the Republican National Convention here in 2016.”

Bob List, a former governor and Republican National Committee member and senior adviser to the Las Vegas bid, said making the first cut will improve the city’s ability to lock down financial commitments for the convention.

“This confirms that we’re certainly in the hunt and we’ve made a significant step forward,” List said. “There’s still a ways to go, but I think we’re off to a good start with the committee.”

“I think we can win this on the merits,” List said. “We can raise the money and give the delegates a good experience.”

Las Vegas is considered one of the front-runners in the competition to win the 2016 convention, partly because the city routinely handles conventions of 50,000 to 150,000 participants.

Also, the Las Vegas convention team has expressed confidence the city can easily raise the $60 million required to hold the convention thanks to generous GOP donors such as Las Vegas Sands Corp. Chairman Sheldon Adelson and casino mogul Steve Wynn.

The proposed site is the Las Vegas Convention Center, which is near McCarran International Airport and close to tens of thousands of hotel rooms on the city’s famous Strip. Other cities in contention might have greater transportation issues, requiring busing of convention goers from far-flung hotels.

On the other hand, Las Vegas officials who pitched the site selection panel on March 21 set aside a portion of their presentation to push back against the “Sin City” image that might prove uncomfortable with conservative elements of the Republican base. At the same time, some Las Vegas boosters say it might not hurt the Republicans, sometimes derided as the party of “old white guys,” to be associated with a city that markets its association with youth and vibrancy.

Reid says BLM Land-grab Not Over

Nevada’s senior Senator, Harry Reid was in Reno, Monday speaking on the future of education and immigration reform in the state. Afterwards, he spoke to Reno’s KRNV News 4’s Samantha Boatman about his take on Cliven Bundy verses the Bureau of Land Management.

“Well, it’s not over.” Reid said. “We can’t have an American people that violate the law and then just walk away from it. So it’s not over.”

Meanwhile, federal land managers are pledging to pursue efforts to resolve the conflict with Bundy, who has refused to pay grazing fees. The BLM revoked Bundy’s grazing rights after he stopped paying grazing fees and disregarded federal court orders to remove his animals.

BLM spokesman Craig Leff said Sunday, “the door isn’t closed” to resolving the matter involving rancher Bundy “administratively and judicially.”

Bundy told the Blaze that he has “no contract with the United States government,” and the federal government has “no jurisdiction or authority” on his grazing rights, water rights, access rights, ranch improvement rights or anything else that “belongs to ‘we the people’ of Clark County.”

Taking his argument back to 1864, the year Nevada joined the Union, Bundy points out the federal government did control the land as a territory. However, when the territory became a state, the government turned that land over to the sovereign state of Nevada, and so the federal government lacks the power to control it today.

“At the moment of statehood the people of the territory become (the) people of the United States with the Constitution, with equal footing to the original 13 states,” Bundy stated. “They had boundaries allowing them a state line. And that boundary was divided into 17 subdivisions, which were counties. Which I live in one of those counties — Clark County, Nevada.”

“As a citizen of that county, I abide by all the state laws,” he added during the final minutes of the Glenn Beck Radio Program, Monday morning.

The BLM released about 400 head of cattle on Saturday that it had seized from Bundy back to the range only hours after announcing a premature halt to the court-authorized roundup because of safety concerns. The operation, expected to take up to a month, ended after only a week.

Bundy is trying to determine whether the BLM damaged any of his cattle before releasing them says Nevada Assemblywoman Michele Fiore, who fears some of the calves won’t survive.

“It’s going to take a lot to revive the calves that were nearly dead when they were returned to the Bundy Ranch because they had been separated from their mothers during the roundup,” Fiore writes on her website, “and a few most likely won’t make it.”

Environmentalists accused the federal agency of capitulating to threats of violence from armed Bundy supporters and urged them to pursue action against the rancher.

“The BLM has a sacred duty to manage our public lands in the public interest, to treat all users equally and fairly,” said Rob Mrowka, senior scientist with the Center for Biological Diversity, tells CBS News. “Instead it is allowing a freeloading rancher and armed thugs to seize hundreds of thousands of acres of the people’s land as their own fiefdom.”

In April 2012, the Center for Biological Diversity filed a notice of intent to sue the BLM for canceling a planned roundup of Bundy’s cattle at the last minute. The suit ultimately triggered last week’s roundup dates to 1993, when the bureau cited concern for the federally protected desert tortoise in the region.

This is not the first time ranchers have had conflict with the federal government’s increasingly expansive control over government lands.

“The Sagebrush Rebellion during the 1970s and 1980s frequently pitted cattle ranchers against the BLM and environmental activists,” writes Christian Post Op-Ed Contributor Rachel Alexander. “No doubt many of these current land grabs are being done in order to force people out of rural areas and into the cities, as part of Agenda 21’s vague goals of making the earth more “sustainable.”

Nevada’s Modern Range War

Nevada’s Gold Butte is rich in history.

Three separate American Indian cultures are known to have settled in the area; their petroglyph carvings, etched into the rocky hillsides. Mormons families settled the Bunkerville are in 1877 and Cliven Bundy’s family was a part of that early Nevada settlement.

That was then — this is now…

Bundy, the last remaining rancher in Clark County, is defying the U.S. Department of the Interior’s Bureau of Land Management as federal agents, including several snipers deployed near the rancher’s home in northeast Nevada. Bundy compares the situation to Ruby Ridge, Idaho and Waco, Texas.

The BLM has also started confiscating his cattle, claiming they’ve exhausted all other options. Agents have so far impounded around 400 of Bundy’s estimated 900 head of cattle.

News reports claim federal officials are considering auctioning the animals to buyers in Utah. However, a BLM spokeswoman says the agency has no plans to ship the impounded cattle off to auction, adding, “in the near future.”

The fight began when Bundy stopped paying the BLM’s grazing fee in 1993, arguing in court filings he had no obligation to pay the agency because his Mormon ancestors, long before the agency’s creation, had worked the land.

“Why should I pay BLM to manage me out of business?” Bundy asked the Las Vegas Review Journal rhetorically. “What I did is I fired the BLM.”

The land was finally declared off-limits for cattle in 1998 and became a designated habitat for the federally protected desert tortoise. That same year, a judge ordered Bundy to remove his cattle, which he refused to do.

“I’m protecting my rights as a rancher, and I’m also protecting the rights of all Clark County residents to access and policing power over this land,” Bundy says.

Yet in August of 2013, the BLM announced plans to kill hundreds of those same threatened desert tortoises it’s been caring for at Desert Tortoise Conservation Center. Federal officials blamed the mass euthanization on a lack of funds.

“It’s the lesser of two evils, but it’s still evil,” U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Desert Tortoise Recovery Coordinator Roy Averill-Murray told the Washington Post.

The BLM had been funding the conservation and research center with fees paid by those who disturb tortoise habitats. During the housing boom in the early 2000s, the conservation center had plenty of cash, since developers were often fined for disturbing such habitats.

Between August 2012 and the announcement, the BLM had only accumulated $290,000 in federal mitigation fees forced from developers. The Centers operating budget is about a million dollars annually.

The agency quickly back-peddled on its euthanization plan, claiming it would adopt-out some tortoises through the Humane Society, with the rest, if healthy, to be released into the wild. The San Diego Zoo currently manages the center under a 2009 partnership with the Fish and Wildlife Service and other agencies.

Meanwhile, Bundy says he owes roughly $300,000 in back fees, but the federal government claims it’s more than that. In addition, the cost of removing the rancher’s cattle from the public land will cost taxpayers roughly $3 million, according to initial estimates.

As tensions mounted, their son, Dave Bundy, while filming agents near a spot designated “First Amendment Area,” was roughed, arrested and held overnight.  Officials cited him for refusing to disperse and resisting arrest.

“It was really just unreal to experience it,” Dave Bundy told Salt Lake City’s FOX13 News. “They believe that they can exercise unlimited authority, unlimited power upon its citizens, upon the citizens of our free America.”

Further violence was narrowly avoided, after a BLM agent tasered Ammon Bundy during a heated confrontation. That confrontation started after BLM agent knocked Cliven Bundy’s sister, Margaret Houston to the ground.

The incident, captured on video, is on YouTube.

Now several ‘Minute Men’ groups have arrived at the ranch. They say they are ready armed confrontation, but insist they will not start the shooting.

Both the BLM and National Park Service released a statement confirming a Bundy’s tasering. The agencies say the incident began when “a BLM truck driven by a non-law enforcement civilian employee assisting with gather operations was struck by a protester on an ATV, and the truck’s exit from the area was blocked by a group of individuals who gathered around the vehicle.”

As the stand-off continues, BLM Acting Deputy Director Neil Kornze, a former advisor to Senator Harry Reid, removed at least three reports from the agency’s website, BLM.gov. One of those documents, entitled “Cattle Trespass Impacts,” claims Bundy’s cows are impacting the building of “utility-scale solar power generation facilities” on “public lands.”

“Non-Governmental Organizations have expressed concern that the regional mitigation strategy for the Dry Lake Solar Energy Zone utilizes Gold Butte as the location for offsite mitigation for impacts from solar development,” the document states, “and that those restoration activities are not durable with the presence of trespass cattle.”

Another BLM report, “Regional Mitigation Strategy for the Dry Lake Solar Energy Zone (BLM Technical Note 444)” reveals the land in question is within the “Dry Lake Solar Energy Zone and surrounding area” and part of a U.S. Department of Energy program for “Solar Energy Development in Six Southwestern States” on land “managed” by the agency.

“In 2012, the BLM and the U.S. Department of Energy published the Final Programmatic Environmental Impact Statement (PEIS) for Solar Energy Development in Six Southwestern States,” the report reads. “The Final Solar Programmatic Environmental Impact Statement assessed the impact of utility-scale solar energy development on public lands in the six southwestern states of Arizona, California, Colorado, Nevada, New Mexico, and Utah.”

“The Approved Resource Management Plan Amendments/Record of Decision (ROD) for Solar Energy Development in Six Southwestern States implemented a comprehensive solar energy program for public lands in those states and incorporated land use allocations and programmatic and SEZ-specific design features into land use plans in the six-state study area.”

Furthermore, Harry Reid’s son, Rory Reid, is the chief representative for Chinese energy giant, ENN Energy Group, which is planning to build a $5-billion solar power and panel manufacturing plant on public land near Laughlin, Nevada.

As  reported by Reuter’s  in August 2012, “Reid has been one of the project’s most prominent advocates, helping recruit the company during a 2011 trip to China and applying his political muscle on behalf of the project in Nevada. His son, a lawyer with a prominent Las Vegas firm that is representing ENN, helped it locate a 9,000-acre (3,600-hectare) desert site that it is buying well below appraised value from Clark County, where Rory Reid formerly chaired the county commission.”

Breitbart News Service discredits the Reid connection, calling it ‘myth busting.’

“Despite the obvious partisan gain to be had if Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid’s son Rory (a failed 2010 Nevada gubernatorial candidate) had somehow been involved in a “land grab” affecting the Bundy family ranch operation — the facts just do not pan out as such. Indeed, Rory Reid did in fact have a hand in plans to reclassify federal lands for renewable energy developments. Just northeast of Las Vegas and Nellis Air Force Base, plans were drawn by Reid allies to potentially develop 5,717 acres of land for such use. While it would be fair to claim that such activity was in Bundy’s relative neighborhood, the federal lands once leased by the family were more than 20 miles away, east of Overton, Nevada. Contrasting maps offered by InfoWars and those entered into federal court record prove such a theory to be a stretch.”

And as the stand-off appears to be winding down, many on the ground are fearing that a “Black Flag Operation,” is now taking place. This comes after officials created a “No Fly Zone,” over the area, power to cell-phones towers being temporarily cut, the building of a ‘Forward Operating Base,’ in an adjacent valley and confiscation of personal weapons from Patriots.

Instead of de-escalation — a secretive plan to escalate the situation is in effect. According to the source, the government plans to take back ‘their land,” fulfilling international obligations, demonize any patriotic resistance and create a situation that will also advance the agenda of gun control and confiscation.

According to another source, the BLM wants to proceed with the sale of the cattle already gathered during the roundup but is reportedly willing to share the revenue from the sale with Bundy. Clark County Sheriff Doug Gillespie has been negotiating with Bundy behind the scenes for months reached a tentative agreement, though Bundy insisted the sheriff come to his ranch to finalize the arrangement face-to-face.

Eric Holder’s Contempt

While being questioned about the Justice Department’s reluctance to hand over documents related to the prosecution of the Holy Land Foundation, a Texas-based Islamic charity that was shut down by the government for funding Hamas, Congressman Louie Gohmert brought up how the House held U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder in contempt of Congress in 2012 over the Fast and Furious gun running scandal.

“I realize that contempt is not a big deal to our attorney general, but it is important that we have proper oversight,” Gohmert said.

Holder snapped back: “You don’t want to go there buddy, all right? You don’t want to go there, OK?”

“I don’t want to go there?” Gohmert responded.

“No,” insisted Holder.

“About the contempt?” Gohmert asked. “You should not assume that this is not a big deal to me. I think that it was inappropriate. I think it was unjust. But never think that that was not a big deal to me. Don’t ever think that.”

“Well I’m just looking for evidence. And normally we’re known by our fruits,” Gohmert added. “And there have been no indications that it was a big deal, because your department has still not been forthcoming in producing the documents that were the subject of the contempt.”

The Texas Congressman shouldn’t be surprised — after all Holder recently told a House appropriations subcommittee that law abiding citizens should be tracked by the government when carrying a firearm.

“By making them either through finger print identification, the gun talks to a bracelet or something that you might wear,” Holder told lawmakers, “how guns can be used only by the person who is lawfully in possession of the weapon.”

The Justice Department has requested $382.1 million in increased spending for its fiscal year 2014 budget for “gun safety.” Included in the proposal is $2 million for “Gun Safety Technology” grants, which would award prizes for technologies that are “proven to be reliable and effective.”

Nine Dead in Northern California Crash

A charter bus and a FedEx semi-truck collided on Interstate 5 north of Highway 32 near Orland Thursday afternoon leaving both drivers and seven high school students dead with another 32 injured. The two vehicles also caught fire leaving charred hulks on the side of the road.

The California Highway Patrol says the driver of the semi-truck was heading south when the vehicle crossed the center divider, crashing head on into the bus. There were 46 passengers, all students from the Southern California area heading to Humboldt State University in Arcata for the schools April 12th Spring Preview Day.

Investigators say the truck driver may have been trying to avoid a Nissan Altima that was also involved in the crash. The bus belonged to Silverado Stages, a tour bus company based out of San Luis Obispo.

Parents and family members of students who were on the bus may contact university police for more information at 707-826-5555. They can also visit the American Red Cross website to search for loved ones.

UPDATE 04/11/2014: CHP says ten people died including the two drivers, five students and three chaperones.

The Premise of Wars

“The war on drugs brought in more drugs and the war on terror brought in more terrorists. Maybe next year we can have a war on money and jobs and see where that goes,” writes Occupy Portland.

Their premise is in error.

The federal government has not done a good job in ending drugs entry into the U.S. because it will not seal the borders. As for terrorists — again the fed’s are treating them as an organization and not an ideology — battling as if it were a war of attrition.

The only war the federal government has fought correctly is the one on money and jobs. Jus’ look at how weak the U.S. economy has been since 2007.

Waiting for the Other Shoe

Hillary Clinton was ready with a quip after a woman threw a shoe at her as she took the stage for a Las Vegas speech.

Security at the Mandalay Bay casino resort ushered out the woman, who is now in federal custody after the incident at the Institute of Scrap Recycling Industries meeting.

“My goodness, I didn’t know that solid waste management was so controversial,” Clinton said. “Thank goodness she didn’t play softball like I did.”

Clinton dodged the object, which sailed past her head.

Mark Carpenter, a spokesman for the recycling institute, said the woman was not affiliated with the organization nor credentialed for the event.

“Our staff denied her access before she later rushed past security,” Carpenter said in a statement. “An ISRI staffer then stopped her as she approached the stage. She was then handed over to law enforcement.”

Jerry Simms, the outgoing chairman of the recycling institute, offered a “deepest apology for that crude interruption.”

The organization represents more than 1,700 companies that process, broker and industrially consume metals, paper, plastics, glass, rubber, electronics and textiles. Both Clinton and Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak spoke at the meeting.

Clinton, who has said she’s thinking about running for president in 2016, has been making paid speeches and is finishing a new book about her State Department days that will be released June 10. She’s on a three-state swing of the West Coast.

The Clinton incident evokes a 2008 event in which an Iraqi journalist threw shoes at President George Bush in Baghdad.

The Many Scandals of Harry Reid (Part 4)

In May 2006, it was discovered that had Reid accepted free ringside tickets from the Nevada Athletic Commission to three professional boxing matches while that state agency was trying to influence him on federal regulation of boxing. He took the free seats for Las Vegas fights between 2003 and 2005 as he was pressing legislation to increase government oversight of the sport, including the creation of a federal boxing commission that Nevada’s agency feared might usurp its authority.

He defended the gifts, saying that they would never influence his position on the bill and he was simply trying to learn how his legislation might affect an important home state industry.

“Anyone from Nevada would say I’m glad he is there taking care of the state’s number one businesses,” he said. “I love the fights anyways, so it wasn’t like being punished,” added the senator, a former boxer and boxing judge.

Senate ethics rules generally allow lawmakers to accept gifts from federal, state or local governments, but specifically warn against taking such gifts, particularly on multiple occasions, when they might be connected to efforts to influence official actions. Two senators who joined Reid for fights with the complimentary tickets took markedly differently steps.

Senator John McCain of Arizona insisted on paying $1,400 for the tickets he shared with Reid for a 2004 championship fight. Senator Ensign accepted free tickets to another fight with Reid but already recused himself from Reid’s federal boxing legislation because his father was an executive for a Las Vegas hotel that hosts fights.

Reid defended his decisions to accept the tickets and to take several actions benefiting former lobbyist Jack Abramoff’s clients and partners as they donated to him.

“I’m not (a) goodie two shoes, I just feel these events are nothing I did wrong,” Reid said.

On September 4, 2008, a Washington court found Abramoff guilty of trading expensive gifts, meals and sports trips in exchange for political favors, and U.S. District Judge Ellen Segal Huvelle sentenced him to a four-year term in prison, to be served concurrently with his previous sentences. Abramoff cooperated in a bribery investigation leading to 21 people either pleading guilty or being found guilty, including White House officials J. Steven Griles and David Safavian, U.S. Representative Bob Ney, and nine other lobbyists and Congressional aides.

Reid, who voted in support of the 2003 invasion of Iraq, had changed his mind by March 2007, when he voted in favor of “redeploying US troops out of Iraq by March 2008”.

Reid said on April 19, 2007, “I believe, myself that the secretary of state, secretary of defense, and — you have to make your own decisions as to what the president knows — this war is lost and the surge is not accomplishing anything as indicated by the extreme violence in Iraq yesterday.”

He also said, “As long as we follow the President’s path in Iraq, the war is lost.”

A year later, while speaking about Senator Obama as a presidential candidate, Reid stated that Obama was a viable candidate because he was “light skinned” and had “no negro dialect unless he wanted one.” Although Republican leaders called for his resignation, Reid apologized to President Obama and African-American leaders and remained in power.

In July of 2012, Reid was interviewed by the Huffington Post. In that interview, he asserted that he had been contacted by a source whom he found to be credible and told that Mitt Romney had not paid taxes for a ten year time period while he was employed at Bain Capital.

Reid also stated that Romney’s father would be ashamed at the fact that his son had released only two years of tax returns as compared to his father’s decision to release 12 years when he ran for President.

Senator Reid continued by stating that a person who used to work at Bain capital had contacted him and stated that Governor Romney did not pay taxes for at least a 10 year span while working at Bain.

“His poor father must be so embarrassed about his son,” reports the Huffington Post. (His source called and told him) … Harry, he didn’t pay any taxes for 10 years. He didn’t pay taxes for 10 years! Now, do I know that that’s true? Well, I’m not certain. But obviously he can’t release those tax returns. How would it look?”

Reid adds, “You guys have said his wealth is $250 million. Not a chance in the world. It’s a lot more than that. I mean, you do pretty well if you don’t pay taxes for 10 years when you’re making millions and millions of dollars.”

The interview caused a media problem for Reid, so he spoke on the Senate floor on August 2, 2012 about the matter, reapplying his opinion.

“When we’re talking about trust, we need to look no farther than my friend the Republican Leader wants to be president of the United States,” Reid said. “He’s refused to release his tax returns, as we know. If a person coming before this body wanted to be a cabinet officer, he couldn’t be if he did the same refusal Mitt Romney does about tax returns.”

“So the word’s out that he hasn’t paid any taxes for ten years,” Reid continued. “Let him prove that he has paid taxes, because he hasn’t. We already know from one partial tax return that he gave us, he has money hidden in Bermuda, the Cayman Islands and a Swiss bank account. Not making that up, that’s in the partial year that he gave us.”

Meanwhile, Reid is busy rewriting both Nevada and U.S. history. When asked about renaming Las Vegas’ McCarran International Airport during a ceremony in August 2012, at the airport’s new Terminal Three, he said he was for it — but that’s not all he had to say.

“Pat McCarran was one of the most anti-Semitic — some of you might know my wife’s Jewish — one of the most anti-black, one of the most prejudiced people who has ever served in the Senate,” said Reid, “It’s not a decision I’m going to make, but if you ask me to give my opinion, I don’t think his name should be on anything.”

McCarran was a United States Senator from Nevada from 1933 until his death in 1954. He was also Nevada Chief Justice, chairman of the Nevada State Board of Parole Commissioners, chairman of the Nevada State Board of Bar Examiners and district attorney for Nye County.

The only thing he was “anti-” on was Communism — which he hated with a passion.

This is the second time Reid has attacked a deceased Nevada politician. In 2009, he released his biography, “The Good Fight,” a play on words referring to his boxing background, claiming Nevada U.S. Congressman Walter Baring told him President John Kennedy’s assassination was “a good thing.”

The book comes with pictures. They fall between pages 116 and 117.

One of the photographs shows Reid in his Capitol policeman uniform, next to the Nevada Cherry Blossom Princess. Next to her is Nevada’s Democrat Congressman Walter Baring.

Baring was Nevada’s only Congressman at the time. Reid claims that on the day President John F. Kennedy was assassinated Baring told him it was good thing as JFK was leading the U.S. into Communism.

“There is no way my dad would have said anything like that, much less to Harry Reid,” said Jeff Baring, son of former Congressman Walter Baring, “Simply, no way.”

Then in April 2013, Reid nominated Las Vegas attorney Jennifer Dorsey to become a federal judge, however two senior partners at the law firm where Dorsey works made large contributions to the political action committee ‘Majority PAC’ founded by Reid to electing Democratic Senate candidates.

Records show Will Kemp made a $100,000 contribution, while J. Randall Jones made a $50,000 contribution. Critics are now questioning whether Reid’s support was “bought” with the law partners’ donations.

Dorsey donated $2,500 to Reid’s PAC in March 2012 after mentioning her interest in becoming a judge. That donation was also reportedly returned by Reid and his office took her name into consideration, according to the Las Vegas Review Journal: “Dorsey’s personal contribution to Reid’s campaign was returned as the senator weighed her possible nomination and wanted to avoid an appearance of conflict,” said Reid spokeswoman, Kristen Orthman.

The Senate Judiciary Committee approved Dorsey along a party-line vote after the Federal Elections Committee determined the donations didn’t violate any laws. She received her commission on July 9, 2013.

Lastly, there are rumors that Reid is suffering from a mental illness, saying something, then denying it. If he is not mentally ill, then as one national radio talk show host put it, “Senator Reid is a liar.”

“We heard about the evils of Obamacare,” Reid stated from the Senate Floor in late February 2014, “about the lives it’s ruining in Republicans’ stump speeches and in ads paid for by oil magnates, the Koch brothers. But in those tales, turned out to be just that: tales, stories made up from whole cloth, lies distorted by the Republicans to grab headlines or make political advertisements…There’s plenty of horror stories being told. All of them are untrue, but they’re being told all over America.”

However, by late March of this year, Reid, again from the Senate Floor claimed he didn’t call anyone a liar.

“I have never come to the floor, to my recollection, I’ve never said a word about examples that Republicans have given regarding Obamacare and how it’s not very good,” said Reid. “Mr. President, the junior senator from Wyoming has come to the floor several times recently talking about the fact that examples that he and others Republicans have given dealing with Obamacare, examples that are bad, I’ve called lies. Mr. President, that is simply untrue…”

Either way, Reid has remained unscathed through all of this.

The Many Scandals of Harry Reid (Part 3)

Over the course of 2001 through 2005, Reid collected nearly $68,000 in contributions from Jack Abramoff’s lobbying partners and clients. Reid took actions to support positions on issues that Abramoff promoted as a paid lobbyist.

Reid received money from Abramoff associates after opposing a minimum wage law in the Marianas which was defeated in the Senate. He also wrote letters and spoke out against the creation of Native American casinos which would have competed with casinos that Jack Abramoff represented.

Reid received money from these casinos at around the same time

Abramoff is a former businessman and con man who was convicted of both defrauding Native American Casinos and trading gifts, meals, sports events tickets, and trips for political favors. He was sentenced to a four year prison term for these actions, which was served concurrently for his convictions of defrauding Native American casinos.

These casinos include: Michigan’s Saginaw Chippewas, California’s Agua Caliente, the Mississippi Choctaws, and the Louisiana Coushattas. The charges against Abramoff included schemes where he would lobby certain laws which would hurt the casino’s business, and thus increase the demand for his services to defeat the legislation or proposal.

Abramoff was the top lobbyist for the Preston Gates & Ellis and Greenberg Traurig firms and a director of the National Center for Public Policy Research, a conservative think tank, and Toward Tradition. Abramoff also worked for the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands from 1995 to 2001.

Although Reid and Abramoff never personally met and Abramoff never directly contributed to Senator Reid’s campaign, there was a great deal of contact between aides of the two offices and Abramoff did ask for donations to be made by the institutions that employed him as a lobbyist. According to documents and those familiar with the Abramoff team’s methods, the lobbyists devised lengthy lists of lawmakers to whom the customers should donate and then delivered the lists to the customers.

The entities, in turn, wrote checks to the recommended campaign committees and in the amounts the lobbyists prescribed. Much of the contact between Abramoff’s lobbying company and Reid’s office dealt with the Marianas Islands.

The Marianas, U.S. territorial islands in the Pacific Ocean, were one of Abramoff’s highest-paying clients and were trying to keep their textile industry exempt from most U.S. laws on immigration, labor and pay, including the minimum wage. Many Democrats have long accused the islands of running garment sweatshops. The islands in 2001 had their own minimum wage of $3.05 an hour, and were exempt from the U.S. minimum of $5.15.

In February 2001, Senator Ted Kennedy introduced a bill that would have raised the U.S. hourly minimum to $6.65 and would have covered the Marianas. The legislation, which eventually failed, would have given the islands an initial break by setting its minimum at just $3.5, nearly $3 lower than any other territory or state, and then gradually increasing it.

Within a month, Ronald Platt — an Abramoff deputy — began billing for routine contacts and meetings with Reid’s staff, starting with a March 26, 2001, contact with Reid chief of staff Susan McCue to “discuss timing and status of minimum wage legislation,” the billing records say.

In all, Platt and a fellow lobbyist reported 21 contacts in 2001 with Reid’s office, mostly with McCue and Reid’s Senate counsel Jim Ryan. One of the Marianas contacts, listed for May 30, 2001, was with Edward Ayoob, Reid’s legislative counsel.

Within a year, Ayoob had left Reid’s office to work for Abramoff’s firm, registering specifically to lobby for the islands as well as several tribes. Reid spokesman Jim Manley confirmed Ayoob had subsequent lobbying contacts with Reid’s office.

Manley cast doubt on some of the contacts recorded in the billing records, saying Reid Chief of Staff Susan McCue was out of Washington for a couple of the dates. But he acknowledged the contacts could have occurred by cell phone.

Reid himself, along with Ryan, met with Abramoff deputy Ronald Platt on June 5, 2001, “to discuss timing on minimum wage bill” that affected the Marianas, according to a bill that Greenberg Traurig, Abramoff’s firm, sent the Marianas.

Three weeks before the meeting, Greenberg Traurig’s political action committee donated $1,000 to Reid’s Senate re-election committee. Three weeks after the meeting, Platt himself donated $1,000 to Reid.

Manley said Reid’s official calendar doesn’t list a meeting on June 5, with Platt, but he also said he couldn’t say for sure the contact didn’t occur. Manley confirmed Platt had regular contacts with Reid’s office, calling them part of the “routine checking in” by lobbyists who work Capitol Hill.

As for the timing of donations, Manley said, “There is no connection. This is just a typical part of lawful fundraising.”

In January 2002, McCue took a free trip, valued at $7,000, to Malaysia with several other congressional aides. The trip, cleared by Senate ethics officials, was underwritten by the U.S. Malaysia Exchange Association, a group trying to foster better relations between the United States and Malaysia.

The trips were part of a broader lobbying strategy by Malaysia, which consulted with Abramoff and paid $300,000 to a company connected to him, according to documents released by Senate investigators. The arrangements included a trip by then-House Majority Leader Tom DeLay and his wife to Malaysia in October 2001.

While Abramoff worked behind the scenes, the Alexander Strategy Group run by two former DeLay aides, Ed Buckham and Tony Rudy, publicly registered to lobby for the U.S. Malaysia Exchange Association.

Rudy, who was cited in Abramoff’s court case, had worked temporarily for Abramoff before joining Buckham at Alexander Strategy, and the three men were friendly. In January 2002, Alexander Strategy arranged two congressional trips to Malaysia underwritten by the association.

One trip took a delegation of Republican congressmen. A Democratic consultant hired by Alexander Strategy, former Clinton White House aide Joel Johnson, invited McCue and went on the second trip with congressional staffers.

Johnson said he invited McCue on behalf of Alexander Strategy and went on the trip with her but said he knew of no connections to Abramoff. “My interest was in getting Democrats to travel to the country and to learn more about Malaysia,” Johnson said.

On March 5, 2002, Reid sent a letter to the Interior Department pressing the agency to reject a proposed casino by the Jena band of Choctaw Indians in Louisiana. Fellow Nevada Senator, John Ensign, also signed.

The Jena’s proposed casino would have rivaled one already in operation in Louisiana run by the Coushattas, and Abramoff was lobbying to block the Jena. The day after Reid’s letter, the Coushattas wrote a $5,000 check to Reid’s Searchlight group at Abramoff’s suggestion.

Reid and Ensign later wrote the Senate Ethics Committee to say their letter had nothing to do with Abramoff or the donation and instead reflected their interest in protecting Las Vegas’ gambling establishments. Reid authored the law legalizing casinos on reservations, and has long argued it does not allow tribal gambling off reservations.

“As senators for the state with the largest nontribal gaming industry in the nation, we have long opposed the growth of off-reservation tribal gaming throughout the United States,” Ensign and Reid wrote.

On November 8, 2002, Reid signed a letter with California Senator Dianne Feinstein urging Interior Secretary Gale Norton to reject a proposal by the Cuyapaipe Band of Mission Indians to convert land for a health clinic into a casino in southern California. The casino would have competed with the Palm Springs gambling establishment run by the Agua Caliente, one of Abramoff’s tribes.

Two weeks later, Reid went to the Senate floor to oppose fellow Senator Debbie Stabenow’s effort to win congressional approval for a Michigan casino for the Bay Mills Indians, which would have rivaled one already operating by the Saginaw Chippewa represented by Abramoff.

“The legislation is fundamentally flawed,” Reid argued, successfully leading the opposition to Stabenow’s proposal.

The next month, Reid joined six other Democratic senators in asking President Bush in mid-December 2002 to spend an additional $30 million for Indian school construction. Several Abramoff tribes, including the Saginaw and the Mississippi Choctaw, were seeking federal money for school building. Six weeks after that letter, three Abramoff partners, including Platt and Ayoob, donated a total of $4,000 to Reid’s Senate re-election campaign.

Later in 2003, the Agua Caliente contributed $13,500 to Reid’s political groups while the Saginaw chipped in $9,000. Reid ten sent a fourth letter on April 30, 2003, joining Ensign a second time to urge Interior to reject the Jena casino.

Two months later, Abramoff’s firm threw a fundraiser for Reid at its Washington office that netted the Nevada senator several more donations from Greenberg Traurig lobbyists and their spouses. Ayoob was instrumental in staging the event, Reid’s office said.

Reid had separate meetings in June 2003 in his Senate offices with two Abramoff tribal clients and Edward Ayoob, a former staff member who went to work with Abramoff.

WordPress to Review this Blog

no freedom of speech

It appears ‘WordPress’ is abridging my freedom of speech and that of other users.

Last night I posted an article and was met with ‘Invalid key [4]. Back.  After some research I found out that it means ‘Contents of this topic are hidden until it has been reviewed by a staff member.’ And there is no one available to talk to about this.

Maybe it’s time to find a new blogging platform.

Nevada Soldier Wounded in Fort Hood Shooting

A native Nevadan is one of the sixteen soldiers wounded in the deadly shooting at Fort Hood. U.S. Army Private Deon Josephs of Las Vegas remains in the hospital, after being shot in the back.

“Deon made it through surgery the bullet is out of his neck with no complications from the surgery,” Deon’s brother, Darren Josephs posted, adding “He is very strong.”

Family members say Deon dreamed of joining the Army since he was a child, finishing boot camp and going active duty in November. He was planning on being a career officer.

Authorities say Ivan Lopez was upset after a being refused a leave of absence form. He then killed three people and injured 16 others before turning the gun on himself.

Lopez and Deon were friends and were assigned to the same unit.

The family is hoping to raise $50,000 at gofundme.com to help pay for the long-term stay they expect to endure as Deon recovers. Meanwhile a memorial service at Fort Hood is scheduled for Wednesday.

The Many Scandals of Harry Reid (Part 2)

interstate 11

A year and a half later, Reid and the Nevada delegation tried again, inserting language moving the power corridor to the west side of the highway into a public land bill for Lincoln County. This time, Whittemore had to compensate the government on the basis of “fair market value,” but that was defined in such a way that would have required him to pay only about $160,000.

Drawing criticism, Reid and the delegation changed the cost provision to say government appraisers should figure what Whittemore had to pay, $10.4 million as it turned out. The bill became law in November 2004.

Jus’ before that bill was passed, Whittemore announced a deal with Westwood-based Pardee Homes to become Coyote Springs’ main residential developer. He also announced that Jack Nicklaus would design a set of golf courses to be known as the Bear Trail.

As the effort to clear a path for Coyote Springs moved forward, Whittemore showed his appreciation for the help Nevada politicians in Washington were giving him, especially Reid. Senator John Ensign and others got contributions, but much less than those given to Reid.

By the spring of 2005, only one step remained: securing a permit to deal with the stream beds and washes. That process, handled by the Army Corps of Engineers, seemed routine, but in late July trouble struck.

Alexis Strauss, an official in the Environmental Protection Agency’s regional office that oversees Nevada, notified the Corps of Engineers that her office had concerns.

“We respectfully object to the issuance of a permit for the proposed project,” Strauss wrote, “because the authorization may result in substantial and unacceptable impacts to aquatic resources of national importance.”

The phrase, “aquatic resources of national importance,” was a designation that gave regional EPA officials leverage to press for environmental concessions.

As it happened, by the time Reid and Ensign had their conversation with the head of the EPA, Whittemore’s permit problem was all but over. On Sept. 16, Whittemore, Leif Reid and others had met with EPA and other federal officials at the site and the atmosphere became conciliatory.

Coyote Springs agreed to leave several washes untouched, reduced the number of acres of waterways to be filled in and pledged to make environmental improvements on 19 acres of other wash land. And Whittemore promised not to disturb the Pahranagat Wash, which runs through the site.

Since Pahranagat is subject to flash flooding, development there was impractical, but Whittemore made its protected status official.

“They took our concerns seriously,” Vendlinski said.

For their part, the regional officials were not looking for a fight. Whittemore had demonstrated that he could bring Reid and Ensign into the game. Privately, some regional EPA officials said they knew their superiors in Washington would not support a hard-line on aquatic resources.

The regional officials not only withdrew their objections, but in April 2006 they also gave Whittemore’s project an award for “environmentally sensitive improvements” in its plans. A smiling Leif Reid accepted the award.

“One year and $1 million in consulting fees later, we got our permit,” Whittemore said ruefully in an interview in May. “It is the right thing to do,” he said, “and there is an economic incentive in making the project proceed.”

As Coyote Springs grows onto the Lincoln County part of the site, more permits will be needed. But Whittemore’s dream is on its way to coming true.

Looking back, he expresses pride in the achievement, and in how far he went to meet environmental and other concerns.

“The final product is the most environmentally friendly development ever proposed in Nevada,” Whittemore said. “I want people to understand that I am the platinum standard.”

Since 2000, Whittemore, his wife and the Coyote Springs company have given Reid’s senatorial campaign and political action committees at least $45,000. That included $35,000 for Reid’s leadership PAC, the Searchlight Leadership Fund, which helped him advance as a Senate leader.

Most of that money was contributed in 2002 shortly after Reid introduced the Clark County land bill.

In 2000, Whittemore gave an additional $20,000 to the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee, which Reid promoted as a party leader. Prior to 2000, the Whittemores had given Reid and his Senate campaign committee a total of $6,500, plus $5,000 for his leadership PAC.

Whittemore also helped Reid’s sons, all of whom at various times have worked for the law firm in which he is a senior partner, Lionel, Sawyer and Collins. Rory Reid is a partner in the firm.

When he ran successfully for the Clark County Board of Commissioners, Whittemore contributed $5,000. He also gave Josh Reid $5,000 for an unsuccessful bid for a seat on the city council in Cottonwood Heights, Utah. Rory and Josh Reid have been active in Democratic politics.

Jon Summers, an aide to Reid, said, “Harvey Whittemore has a history of giving money to political candidates far and wide — and to both political parties. However, as a registered Democrat, it is only logical that he would give a larger percentage to Democratic candidates and committees.”

In 2001, the senator’s office established a rule that family members could lobby his office but could not get special treatment. In 2002, responding to questions by The Times, the rule was changed to prohibit any lobbying of Reid’s office by his family.

“For the last four years, our office has had a policy that Reid family members are not to lobby the office on business matters, even if those matters benefit Nevada,” Susan McCue, Reid’s chief of stated. “Leif is not a lobbyist, but he should not have called our office. I have reminded Leif of this policy to prevent future calls.”

Leif Reid did not respond to questions. The contacts by Leif Reid and others “were not an attempt to have Reid’s office direct the outcome of the federal permitting process,” Whittemore said.

Reid owns a great deal of land near Bullhead City, Arizona. In 2006, he sponsored an earmark to provide $18 million in funding to build a bridge to connect Laughlin, Nevada and Bullhead City, Arizona. This bridge is near the property he owns and will undoubtedly increase the value of that land.

More than 20 years ago Reid purchased 100 acres of land roughly 3-5 miles from Bullhead City, Arizona for a price of $150,000. His longtime friend, Clair Haycock bought the remaining 60 acres for $90,000.

In the early 1990’s Californians bought the property from the two for $1.3-million. Those investors defaulted and the land was returned to Senator Reid.

In early 2002, Haycock sold out to Reid for $10,000, or about $166 an acre. At the time, the Mohave County assessor valued the entire parcel at $339,620, or more than $2,000 an acre.

In 2006, after the announcement of the bridge, a businessman bought land near Reid’s at a rate of $6,396 an acre. From 2001 to 2005, Reid disclosed that the property was worth $500,000 to 1,000,000.

Then, in 2006, after the earmark for the bridge went into effect, he indicated that the entire 160-acre property was worth only $150,000. In 2007 and 2008, Reid valued the asset at $250,000 to 500,000.

The proposed bridge between Laughlin and Bullhead City was not on the priority list sent to local members of Congress by either the Nevada or Arizona transportation agencies. But beginning in 2003, local supporters of the bridge, which would be the second span connecting the two towns, found a receptive audience when they approached some members of the Nevada and Arizona congressional delegations.

Civic leaders argued that an additional bridge was needed because traffic on the existing connector bridge, on the northern edge of Bullhead City, had become overwhelming Laughlin consists mainly of casinos and hotels, and has little housing or shopping.

Most of the casino workers live across the river in Bullhead City, which also has shopping and a hospital. Elected officials say both communities would benefit from a second bridge. Acting on a request from the town of Laughlin, Reid, a member of the Senate Appropriations Committee’s transportation subcommittee, in 2003 secured $500,000 for preliminary studies.

Initially, Rep. Jon Porter, supported by Rep. Trent Franks, got $2 million for the bridge inserted into the House version of the transportation bill. By the time Congress approved the $286-billion transportation bill, $18 million more in bridge funding had been added.

Reid took credit in a news release for securing money that would kick the project into high gear. The bridge, still in the planning stages, is projected to cost $30 million to $40 million.

Arizona’s two Republican senators voted against the entire transportation bill as pure pork. Meanwhile, city and county officials say that land values have risen in Bullhead City as developers and speculators discover the area.

Steve Ellis, vice president of Taxpayers for Common Sense, a watchdog that tracks congressional spending said, “Unwittingly, the taxpayer may have helped inflate the value” of Reid’s property.

Finally, in March 2014, a sign promoting a future Interstate 11 from Las Vegas to Phoenix was unveiled at the stateliness of Nevada and Arizona at the Hoover Dam. The proposed roadway plan currently runs jus’ east of Bullhead City.

For several years, Reid donated funds from his re-election campaign to an employee holiday fund for the employees of the building where he resides. Although this appears to be in violation of federal election law and Senator Reid has reimbursed his campaign fund with his own money, Reid insists the use of the money was legal.

Federal election law permits campaigns to provide “gifts of nominal value” but prohibits candidates from using political donations for personal expenses, such as mortgage, rent or utilities for “any part of any personal residence.” The law specifically defines prohibited personal use expenses as any “obligation or expense of any person that would exist irrespective of the candidate’s campaign or duties as a federal officeholder.”

Reid and his wife live at Ritz-Carlton in Washington where they purchased a condo at the hotel for $750,000 in March of 2001. The residents of the hotel can give money for the holiday bonuses of the employees there through the Residents Executive Committee Holiday Fund.

The fund has been in existence for many years.

Reid gave the following donations to the holiday fund: $600 in 2002, $1200 in 2004 and $1500 in 2005 For two of those years, the donations are listed as campaign “salary” and one year, they are listed as a contribution.

When asked about the donations, Senator Reid stated: “These donations were made to thank the men and women who work in the building for the extra work they do as a result of my political activities, and for helping the security officers assigned to me because of my Senate position.:

Larry Noble, the Federal Election Commission’s former chief enforcement lawyer, said Reid’s explanation is aimed at a “gray area” in the law by suggesting the donations were tied to his official Senate and political work.

“What makes this harder for the senator is that this is his personal residence,” adds Noble, “and this looks like an event that everybody else at the residence is taking out of their personal money as they’re living there.”

Paid in Full

A friend emailed this to me and I liked it so much it made me want to share it with you…

A young man was getting ready to graduate from college. For many months he had admired a beautiful sports car in a dealer’s showroom, and knowing his father could well afford it, he told him that was all he wanted.

As Graduation Day approached, the young man awaited signs that his father had purchased the car. Finally, on the morning of his graduation, his father called him into his private study and told him how proud he was to have such a fine son, and how much he loved him.

He handed him a beautifully wrapped gift box. Curious, but somewhat disappointed, the young man opened the box and found a lovely, leather-bound Bible, with his name embossed in gold.

Angrily, he raised his voice to his father and said, “With all your money you give me a Bible?”

He stormed out of the house, leaving the Bible behind.

Many years passed and the young man was very successful in business. He had a beautiful home and wonderful family, but realized his father was very old.

He thought perhaps he should go to him. He had not seen him since that graduation day.

But before he could make arrangements, he received a telegram telling him his father had passed away, and willed all of his possessions to him. He needed to come home immediately and take care of things.

When he arrived at his father’s house, sadness and regret filled his heart. He began to search through his father’s important documents and saw the Bible, new, just as he had left it years ago.

With tears, he opened the Bible and began to turn the pages. His father had carefully underlined a verse, Matt 7:11, “And if ye, being evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more shall your Heavenly Father which is in Heaven, give to those who ask Him?”

As he read those words, a car key dropped from the back of the Bible. It had a tag with the dealer’s name, the same dealer who had the sports car he had desired. On the tag was the date of his graduation, and the words – “paid in full.”

The Many Scandals of Harry Reid (Part 1)

This is a four-part expose’ looking at a number of scandals involving Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, Democrat, Nevada.

Playing the role of “aggrieved grandfather,” Senator Harry Reid is promising to reimburse his campaign the full sum he paid out. Nevada political reporter Jon Ralston discovered Reid’s campaign paid out an additional $14,000 to Ryan Elisabeth Reid’s jewelry company for “holiday gifts” for staff and campaign donors.

“My granddaughter has been the target of harassing phone calls, strangers tracking her down and knocking on her door and negative, unwanted attention on the internet,” complained Reid. “This has gone too far and it needs to stop now. I deeply regret any role I had in creating this situation but now, as a grandparent, I say enough is enough.”

Originally, the total was thought to be approximately $17,000.

This is the same sort of situation former Reid financier Harvey Whittmore is facing jail time over. Whittemore is convicted of contributing more than $100,000 illegally to Reid’s campaign in 2007.

He became the target of an FBI probe for making “conduit contributions”: indirect payments in which an individual asks a friend or family member to make a donation in return for reimbursement. Whittemore used his wife, sister, five children, and some spouses of those children in the scheme.

During open testimony, Whittimore says he was approached by Reid, who asked him to raise $150,000, and that “he studied the law and decided that he could legally take out a loan, distribute the funds as gifts, and ask the recipients to support Reid’s campaign.

This isn’t the first ‘scandal ridden’ dealings Reid and Whittmore ventured into. In the 1990s, Whittemore came across the site for Coyote Springs and recognized it’s potential.

It is 5 miles wide and stretches 13 miles along the east side of U.S. 93 between parallel mountain ranges. Equally important, the site was in private hands , rare in a state where the federal government owns 87% of the land.

Nothing remotely as large and well-located might come on the market again. There was just one catch: for all its possibilities, the land had serious obstacles to development that only the federal government could remove.

First, Congress had created a mile-wide power line corridor covering 10,500 acres and running the length of the property close to the highway. No power lines had been built, but development inside the corridor seemed to be precluded.

A second problem was that ancient stream beds and washes crisscrossed the site. Though dry most of the year, as part of the valley’s ecosystem they could not be bulldozed or otherwise altered without federal permits.

In addition, while the private owner controlled all 42,842 acres, the federal government had retained title to almost a third of those acres to maintain a preserve for the desert tortoise, Nevada’s state reptile, which is shielded by the Endangered Species Act.

The tortoise’s habitat was concentrated in a wedge-shaped area in the middle of the site. Here too, development seemed to be prohibited.

But it was the exigencies of national security that put Coyote Springs in play. In 1988, Congress turned the land over to defense contractor Aerojet-General Corp. to test rockets.

The southern third of the land is in Clark County, which includes Las Vegas, and the rest is in Lincoln County. The rocket range was never created and the land remained essentially untouched until 1998, when Whittemore paid Aerojet-General at least $15 million for title to the privately owned portion of the site and for the rights under a rent-free government lease of the tortoise habitat.

Soon afterward, Whittemore reduced his financial exposure by selling the rights to 7,500 acre-feet of groundwater and a well to the Southern Nevada Water Authority for $25 million. But he retained other water rights at Coyote Springs and has agreements with Lincoln County and its private water company partner to buy more for the development.

Almost immediately, Whittemore began to push for the title to, and unrestricted use of, the tortoise habitat in the middle of the site. He argued that moving the tortoise preserve to the eastern edge of the site, where it would abut federal land, would help the desert tortoise and remove an impediment to his project.

In 1999, regional officials of the Interior Department refused, saying that only Congress could approve moving the preserve. Over the next five years, Whittemore bombarded the government with proposals.

Finally, in 2004, the Bureau of Land Management agreed to give him title to nearly 10,000 acres of tortoise land in the middle of his site in exchange for equal acreage along the fringes. They called the swap a “minor” boundary adjustment.

No federal appraisal was made to determine whether the land the government got was equal in value to the land it gave up, and some public land experts say the exchange may have been illegal.

“The law clearly wouldn’t allow a ‘boundary adjustment’ of 10,000 acres,” said Janine Blaeloch of the Western Lands Project, a group that advocates for public lands. “Congress drew the map of the leased lands. Congress would have to change it.”

The bureau said it agreed to the land swap because the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service said moving the preserve would be good for the tortoise. Neither Sen. Reid nor Leif Reid played a role in getting the tortoise preserve relocated, Whittemore said.

In 2002, Reid went to work on removing the power line corridor. First, he and others in Nevada’s congressional delegation tucked an obscurely worded provision into a huge land bill to benefit a wide range of interests in Clark County.

The provision shifted the power corridor off Whittemore’s land and onto federal land along the west side of U.S. 93. The land west of the highway had been earmarked for “wilderness study,” but a separate section of the bill reclassified the land to allow power lines.

As drafted, the bill would have done Whittemore a large financial favor: It required him to pay nothing for getting the power corridor moved to the west side of the highway, even though it increased the value of his 10,500 acres on the east side by clearing it for development. The giveaway prompted questions from the Bureau of Land Management and the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee.

With the legislative clock running out, Reid and his Nevada colleagues backed off, removing from the bill the provision moving the power line corridor. But another provision, one that reclassified the status of the land on the west side so that it eventually could accommodate a power line corridor, survived, and President Bush signed the bill in November 2002.

Save The Klamath

save the klamath

The battle over keeping the Klamath River wild has been an ongoing battle, fought for nearly a century as California Proposition 11 was on the November 4, 1924 ballot as an initiated state statute. The ballot reads in part:

“Klamath River Fish and Game District. Initiative measures Creates Klamath River Fish and Game District consisting of Klamath River and waters thereof following its meanderings from confluence of Klamath and Shasta Rivers in Siskiyou County to mouth of Klamath River in Del Norte County. Prohibits the construction or maintenance of any dam or other artificial obstruction in waters of said district, prescribes penalties therefor (sic), and declares any such artificial obstruction to be a nuisance.”

The argument for the measure was penned by J. A. Ager, Chairman, Board of Supervisors, Siskiyou County and Frank M. Newbert, President Fish and Game Commission of California. The argument against the bill was written by R.J Wade, Secretary, Eureka Chamber of Commerce and Fred M. Kay, County Clerk, Humboldt County.

The measure was approved.

Whose Obstructing Ukraine, Harry?

“As we begin debate on this aid and sanctions package, I also hope that Republicans who stopped action on this legislation prior to the break have considered how their obstruction affects United States’ national security as well as the people of Ukraine,” says Reid. “Since a few Republicans blocked these important sanctions last work period, Russian lawmakers voted to annex Crimea and Russian forces have taken over Ukrainian military bases.”

Reid’s charge comes despite widespread support among Republicans and Democrats in Congress for providing Ukraine with much-needed economic assistance and hitting Russian President Vladimir Putin’s government with sanctions. Meanwhile, Senate aides note the House passed different legislation, meaning the Senate bill could not have become law before recess anyhow.

He adds, “It’s impossible to know whether events would have unfolded differently if the United States had responded to Russian aggression with a strong, unified voice. When a few extremist Republicans blocked action on this robust bill reported with strong, bipartisan support by the Foreign Relations Committee, it sent a dangerous message to Russian leaders.”

His comments came just a few hours before senators voted 78 to 17 to proceed with debate on a $1 billion aid package to the new Ukrainian government. All the votes in opposition came from Republicans, most of who are concerned that the package includes changes to how the U.S. provides money for the International Monetary Fund.

Reid announced the only way to provide Ukraine with economic assistance quickly was to remove the IMF provision from a Senate aid package, which he did. However, it doesn’t stop Russia from collecting around $3 million off the top from the U.S. aid package because of a previous agreement between Ukraine and Russia made in late December 2013.

If anything, Reid should be blaming the Obama Administration for the invasion of the Crimea. Remember the February 7th leaked conversation between Assistant Secretary of State Victoria Nuland and U.S. Ambassador to Ukraine Geoffrey Pyatt?

In that tapped telephone call Nuland is quoted, “…fuck the EU.”

Furthermore in the same call, Nuland and Pyatt discussed who they wanted to promote and prevent from entering the Ukrainian government, which is evidence the U.S. government had been meddling in Ukrainian internal affairs before the take-over. They also talked about getting the United Nations involved in the Ukrainian mess.

Reid’s partisan attacks and lies are getting old and worn out — jus’ like his hold on the Senate.

Jimmy Carter: The NSA is Spying on Me

clinton-obama-carter

Former President Jimmy Carter thinks the National Security Agency’s is reading his email. In an interview with NBC’s Andrea Mitchell, Carter says he has found away around the snooping, though.

“And when I want to communicate with a foreign leader privately,” admits Carter, “I type or write the letter myself, put it in the post office, and mail it.”

“Old fashioned snail mail?” Mitchell laughs.

“Yeah, because I believe if I send an email, it will be monitored,” Carter answered.

The former Commander-in-Chief never feinted indignity and Mitchell never followed up on his comment.