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Gender: Male
Hometown: South Texas. most of my life I lived in Austin and Dallas
Home country: United States
Current location: Bryan, Texas
Member since: Sun Aug 14, 2011, 03:57 AM
Number of posts: 78,485

About Me

Middle-aged white guy who believes in justice and equality for all. Math and computer analyst with additional 21st century jack-of-all-trades skills. I'm a stud, not a dud!

Journal Archives

CalPERS hires attorney from pension lawsuit that strikes fear in state workers

Ashley Dunning brought some baggage to a job interview Wednesday at the California Public Employees’ Retirement System.

She was one of two finalists for an assignment as a special counsel to the CalPERS Board of Administration, where she’d advise board members on conflicts of interest and their fiduciary responsibilities. She’s the board’s acting fiduciary counsel, and she delivered a top-notch presentation that had board members ready to offer the job on a longer contract.

The hang-up for some board members, however, is that she’s the attorney representing Marin County in a lawsuit striking fear in public employees around the state.

Her side is defending the county’s interpretation of a law aimed at ending pension spiking. The case gained a broader scope in August when an appeals court used the lawsuit to rule that public workers are entitled to a “reasonable pension,” but not necessarily one that’s calculated on the most favorable formula for them.

Read more here: http://www.sacbee.com/news/politics-government/the-state-worker/article139157283.html

Sacramento police confrontation leaves man with severe brain damage

A methamphetamine user with a troubled past, John Hernandez was behaving strangely enough in a Sacramento drug store parking lot for two people to call 911 on a recent weekday afternoon.

Police said Hernandez challenged strangers to fight while walking around shirtless near Alhambra Boulevard. Soon after officers arrived, he fled. Officers chased him into the back hallway of a nearby medical office, where they hit him with batons and used Taser stun guns.

More than three weeks later, Hernandez is still in an intensive care unit with severe brain damage. Late Wednesday, his condition declined and he stopped breathing on his own, according to his mother, Debbie Hernandez.

What transpired during the incident is unclear. Sacramento police have not discussed the matter in detail, citing an ongoing investigation. The Police Department said Tuesday it will release video from the event, though it did not specify when it will make the footage available, nor did it identify John Hernandez by name, referring to him as a “combative subject.”

Read more here: http://www.sacbee.com/news/local/crime/article141343523.html

Hundreds of protesters greet U.S. immigration enforcement chief in Sacramento

Hundreds of protesters greeted the country’s top immigration enforcement official Tuesday during a Sacramento stop that inflamed passions over the Trump administration’s hardline stance on refugees and undocumented immigrants.

The public forum held at the Sacramento County Youth Gym was billed as Acting Immigration and Customs Enforcement Director Thomas Homan’s first ever public event leading the enforcement agency known as ICE. Homan came at the invitation of Sacramento County Sheriff Scott Jones.

Protesters, including officials such as Sacramento Mayor Darrell Steinberg and state Senate President Pro Tem Kevin de León, condemned the administration’s policies with speeches, chants and songs. The protest outside the gym stayed peaceful as law enforcement patrolled on mountain bike and motorcycle, and a sheriff’s helicopter circled overhead.

Once the forum got underway, however, protesters booed and yelled at both Homan and Jones, with Steinberg attempting to keep the peace. Several protesters were escorted out of the forum by deputies after yelling at the speakers. Some attendees also showed their support of Jones and the Trump administration.

Read more here: http://www.sacbee.com/news/local/article141353198.html

Board member asks Jerry Brown to take over troubled California tax collection agency

A critical audit of the Board of Equalization is not yet public, but it’s already prompting demands for changes at an agency that collects $60 billion a year in tax revenue.

Board member Fiona Ma on Monday sent a letter to Gov. Jerry Brown asking him to appoint a public trustee to oversee the agency.

“This extraordinary step is necessary to restore public trust and to address the various serious issues outlined by the recent” audit, she wrote.

She’s referring to an audit by the Department of Finance that revealed slippery accounting, elected leaders steering resources to events that promote themselves and a climate of fear among civil servants who worry about crossing board members.

Read more here: http://www.sacbee.com/news/politics-government/the-state-worker/article141511014.html

Jerry Brown, Democratic leaders agree to increase taxes to fix California roads

Gov. Jerry Brown and Democratic legislative leaders announced a $5.2 billion road-funding package Wednesday that would raise gas taxes and user fees on motorists, setting off a major political struggle to pass it in the Legislature.

Officials have set an April 6 deadline to approve the package, which would increase fuel taxes and contains a new sliding charge linked to a vehicle’s value. The agreement also includes a constitutional amendment meant to keep lawmakers from shifting transportation revenue to other uses, something that happened frequently in the past.

For the owner of a $30,000 vehicle, who drives 13,000 miles a year at 25 miles per gallon, Wednesday’s package would cost an additional $16.80 a month at full implementation, assuming tax levels in place today.

Likening the condition of the state’s roads to a homeowner’s deteriorating roof, Brown said the state has to act to avoid even worse maintenance and repair problems in the future.

Read more here: http://www.sacbee.com/news/politics-government/capitol-alert/article141475034.html

California Democrats want a 'sanctuary state' for immigrants here illegally. But those who are felon

California Democrats want a 'sanctuary state' for immigrants here illegally. But those who are felons should be sent packing

Democratic politicians want California to be a sanctuary for immigrants here illegally. OK. If they’re hard working and obeying the law, fine.

But if they’re thugs? Call the feds and boot their butts back across the border.

That’s my view. And it’s also the opinion of most sane people, I suspect. Even Democratic office holders must think this down deep. So why is it so hard for them to say it?

Being mushy just makes Democrats easy targets — not only for the hotheads who are constantly riled up about all illegal immigration, but ordinary citizens who may be sympathetic toward struggling undocumented families, but wonder why California seems to tolerate the few hoodlums among them.

Read more: http://www.latimes.com/politics/la-pol-sac-skelton-sanctuary-state-bill-felons-20170330-story.html

Aaron Schock staffer was FBI informant, court filings reveal

The FBI wired a congressional staffer and turned him into a secret informant during its investigation into former Rep. Aaron Schock’s (R-Ill.) alleged misuse of government and campaign funds, Schock’s attorneys said Tuesday in federal court filings.

The staffer, who is not named, secretly taped conversations with Schock and people working in his office while Schock was still a member of Congress, according to a 30-page motion and attached memo that cites documents from the court discovery process.

The informant took documents from Schock’s Illinois district office, including from another staffer’s desk and email inbox, and provided them to federal investigators, the documents say.

Schock was indicted last year on 24 counts related to alleged misuse of government and campaign funds. His trial is set to begin this summer.

Read more: http://thehill.com/homenews/house/326208-schock-staffer-was-fbi-informant-court-filings-reveal

Mexican state attorney general arrested at U.S. border in San Diego on drug trafficking charges

Federal agents in San Diego have arrested the attorney general for the Mexican state of Nayarit on charges that he conspired to smuggle heroin, cocaine and methamphetamine into the U.S.

Edgar Veytia, 46, was detained Monday at the U.S. border in San Diego on an indictment handed down by a grand jury in New York, Ralph DeSio, a spokesman for U.S. Customs and Border Protection, said Wednesday.

The indictment was filed March 2 in the Eastern District of New York — the same jurisdiction where federal prosecutors have charged Sinaloa cartel commander Joaquín “El Chapo” Guzmán — and a U.S. magistrate judge in Brooklyn unsealed the charging papers on Tuesday.

As attorney general, Veytia is the top law enforcement official in Nayarit, a state in western Mexico between the cities of Mazatlán and Puerto Vallarta.

Read more: http://www.latimes.com/local/lanow/la-me-ln-arrest-border-drug-trafficking-20170329-story.html

Ex-Compton official stole $3.7 million in parking tickets and other fees, feds say. For years, no...

Ex-Compton official stole $3.7 million in parking tickets and other fees, feds say. For years, no one noticed

Each week, thousands of dollars in checks and cash arrive at Compton City Hall, as residents and business owners pay off their parking tickets, trash bills and various municipal fees.

The money adds up to an important chunk of the budget in a city once beset with financial problems and the possibility of bankruptcy.

But prosecutors say one former city employee saw all these payments as an opportunity.

Over the last six years, officials allege that Compton’s then-deputy city treasurer, Salvador Galvan, brazenly skimmed more than $3.7 million from City Hall, taking anywhere from $200 to $8,000 a day. The losses were small enough, federal prosecutors said, that they didn’t trigger alarm for years, but fellow employees privately wondered how he could afford a new Audi and other upscale expenses on a $60,000 salary.

Read more: http://www.latimes.com/local/lanow/la-me-ln-deputy-treasurer-federal-embezzlement-charges-20170329-story.html

Huntington Beach Pro-Trump March Turns Into Attack on Anti-Trump Protesters, OC Weekly

Right now, the world is hearing a tale from Huntington Beach of a pro-Donald Trump rally that erupted in violence after a masked anarchist pepper-sprayed one of the march organizers, Jennifer Sterling, without provocation. Trump supporters are crowing that they gave counter-protesters a taste of MAGA medicine, and are no doubt emboldened to go after any cucks, snowflakes and SJWs who stand in their way.

Especially if it's the press—namely, the OC Weekly—trying to do our job.

It started peacefully enough. On an overcast Saturday morning, a mini-festival popped up at Bolsa Chica State Beach as part of a nationwide effort to show support for Trump. An overwhelmingly white crowd (yeah, there were some tokens—good for them!) of old people, families, teens, and even pups filtered onto the sand. Many wore red "Make America Great Again" hats or waved the Stars and Stripes, "Don't Tread on Me" and "Blue Live Matters" flags. And then there were the signs: "Keep Orange County Republican" and "The Silent Majority" and some Pepes and other such fun.

"The Star Spangled Banner" played. Speeches would be recited. Dana Rohrbacher rambled. Doves would be released. A Marine did pull-ups. And then counter-protesters showed up around 10 a.m., down the way from the party.

"We feel like it's important to come out here and be heard," Organizer Jordan Hoiberg said shortly after arriving. He's a Newport Beach resident and a member of Socialist Party USA. "As Frederick Douglas said 'Power concedes nothing without a demand' so we're here today to make demands...We're going to make sure we're heard but we're not looking to provoke any kind of physical confrontation with the Trump supporters in any way."

Read more: http://www.ocweekly.com/news/huntington-beach-pro-trump-march-turns-into-attack-on-anti-trump-protesters-press-7991623
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