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Member since: Sun Jan 3, 2010, 01:16 AM
Number of posts: 2,916

About Me

Was once a republican. long long ago, in a far, far away place. I apologize.

Journal Archives

Leaked Memo: Trump Admin to Boost Use of Private Prisons While Slashing Federal Staff

Leaked Memo: Trump Admin to Boost Use of Private Prisons While Slashing Federal Staff

ERIC KATZ | JANUARY 25, 2018 5:18 PM ET

The Trump administration is following through on its promise to use more private contract prisons, with the Justice Department seeking to identify inmates to transfer out of government-owned facilities and to cut federal guard positions.

The Bureau of Prisons has the stated goal of “increasing population levels in private contract facilities,” according to a memorandum sent by the agency’s Assistant Director for Correctional Programs Division Frank Lara on Wednesday and obtained by Government Executive.

The memo follows guidance from Attorney General Jeff Sessions last year that reversed an Obama administration policy to phase out the use of private prisons. In 2016, former Deputy Attorney General Sally Yates issued a memo instructing the bureau to either end private facility contracts when their terms expired or “substantially reduce [their] scope” to correspond with declining inmate populations. Sessions said in February 2017 that Yates' decision “changed long-standing policy” of the bureau and impaired its “ability to meet the future needs of the federal correctional system.”


Big 'flash' seen in the skies over part of Michigan and beyond

Source: Lansing State Journal

LANSING - Police dispatch lines were lighting up with reports of a big flash in the sky on Tuesday night, evidence of an apparent fireball seen over parts of lower Michigan and as far away as Chicago and Windsor.

Lansing-area dispatchers were fielding calls about the phenomenon around 8:20 p.m., and the National Weather Service in Grand Rapids also received calls.

Twitter was jumping with reports about the flash on Tuesday night.

"What is being described as a 'meteor re-entry' caused a large flash of light and loud noise heard across Michigan, Chicago and Windsor," read a tweet from Michigan Bests.

Read more: http://www.lansingstatejournal.com/story/news/local/2018/01/16/big-flash-seen-skies-over-part-michigan-and-beyond/1038927001/

An Airman of the Cold War fights 60 years later

In 1955 she was kicked out of the Air Force for being a lesbian. At 90, she's fighting back.

By KYLE SWENSON | The Washington Post | Published: January 11, 2018

The barracks were thick with anxious whispers and rumors, but she figured there was nothing incriminating about leaving the air base for a sandwich.

On a Friday night in 1955, Airman 2nd Class Helen Grace James and another female service member left the field after work for dinner in a nearby town. The place was too crowded to sit down, so after getting food the two drove to the wooded area south of where Hempstead Harbor stabs into Long Island. They found a quiet spot to eat. James cut the engine. She was reaching for her sandwich when flashlight beams ignited the car interior. Air Police. From the base. They had been followed.

"They asked us what we were doing," James recently told The Washington Post.

Within a few days, She was arrested and put through hours of humiliating interrogation. The questions were so harsh and disgusting James had to run to the latrine because she felt sick. Finally, after an interrogator threatened to go to her family, James relented. She said she would sign whatever they wanted.
The experience was not isolated but part of a larger and ugly chapter in American history. She was subjected to a military investigation because she was a lesbian. If she was a lesbian, the U.S. military did not want her in uniform. Long before "don't ask, don't tell," in an era spiked with Cold War paranoia and McCarthyism, the government and military systematically rooted out service members like James.

Now, at 90, she's fighting to right the historical wrong with a federal lawsuit against the U.S. Air Force. The complaint asks the court to upgrade her discharge to "honorable," thus restoring the California woman's rights and honor as a veteran.


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