April 9, 2013 - The Constantine Report    
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March 5th 2020 12

Are you using the best credit card when ordering food for delivery?

The key to more success is to have a lot of pillows. Always remember in the jungle there’s a lot of they in there, after you will make it to paradise. Egg whites, turkey sausage, wheat toast, water.

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March 5th 2020 12

Are you using the best credit card when ordering food for delivery?

The key to more success is to have a lot of pillows. Always remember in the jungle there’s a lot of they in there, after you will make it to paradise. Egg whites, turkey sausage, wheat toast, water.

Continue reading
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March 5th 2020 12

Are you using the best credit card when ordering food for delivery?

The key to more success is to have a lot of pillows. Always remember in the jungle there’s a lot of they in there, after you will make it to paradise. Egg whites, turkey sausage, wheat toast, water.

Continue reading
Image
March 5th 2020 12

Are you using the best credit card when ordering food for delivery?

The key to more success is to have a lot of pillows. Always remember in the jungle there’s a lot of they in there, after you will make it to paradise. Egg whites, turkey sausage, wheat toast, water.

Continue reading
Image
March 5th 2020 12

Are you using the best credit card when ordering food for delivery?

The key to more success is to have a lot of pillows. Always remember in the jungle there’s a lot of they in there, after you will make it to paradise. Egg whites, turkey sausage, wheat toast, water.

Continue reading
Image
March 5th 2020 12

Are you using the best credit card when ordering food for delivery?

The key to more success is to have a lot of pillows. Always remember in the jungle there’s a lot of they in there, after you will make it to paradise. Egg whites, turkey sausage, wheat toast, water.

Continue reading

Agent Orange Still Haunts Iowa Vietnam Vets

This is a modified py-6 that occupies the entire horizontal space of its parent.

” … The number of veterans suffering Agent-Orange-related afflictions almost certainly exceeds the more than 358,000 U.S. military personnel killed or wounded in combat with the enemy during the Vietnam War. … “

Veterans waiting longer for aid as health problems persist

IOWA CITY — Unlike warmly welcomed veterans of earlier and later wars, Vietnam vets got the parting gift that keeps on giving: Agent Orange — a plant defoliant that mistakenly included the carcinogen dioxin.

Nearly 40 years after the war’s end, disability claims for often-deadly ailments caused by the ubiquitous toxic spray continue to mount, as do wait times for disposition of disability claims.

Though it would be difficult to confirm with government statistics, the number of veterans suffering Agent-Orange-related afflictions almost certainly exceeds the more than 358,000 U.S. military personnel killed or wounded in combat with the enemy during the Vietnam War.

“We track things by the condition itself, not by the cause of the condition,” said Randal Nollen, a spokesman for the Department of Veterans Affairs in Washington, D.C.

“The number one population that we handle for disability claims is Vietnam veterans with Agent Orange-related ailments,” ahead of veterans of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, said Don Tyne, director of the Linn County Veterans Affairs Office.

During the past eight months, Tyne said his office has helped more than 1,000 Vietnam veterans apply for disability benefits.

Tyne said the Iowa Department of Veterans Affairs has 7,000 pending disability claims, with an average wait for disposition of 18 months.

“This is the longest wait period since I’ve been here. Ten years ago it was 90 days,” Tyne said.

Toxic legacy

Named for the orange-striped barrels in which it was shipped, Agent Orange is a toxic herbicide widely used by the U.S. military in Vietnam to destroy food crops and kill jungle vegetation that concealed North Vietnamese troops.

Manufactured primarily by Monsanto Corporation and Dow Chemical, the blend of herbicides was inadvertently contaminated with the dioxin TCDD, a toxic chemical later linked to numerous fatal diseases.

From 1961 to 1971 U.S. and South Vietnamese forces sprayed 20 million gallons over vast areas of South Vietnam and parts of Laos and Cambodia, exposing millions of U.S. troops and Vietnamese civilians to its ill effects.

Waiting for help

Navy veteran John Wilkinson, 67, of Marion, attributes the cancer that resulted in the 2008 surgical removal of his prostate gland to his exposure to Agent Orange in 1966 and 1967. Eighteen months after applying for disability benefits, Wilkinson is still awaiting a determination, and he is far from alone.

“I am convinced their (method of operation) is delay. The longer they can delay, the more likely (the applicant) will give up or die,” said Wilkinson.

Though Wilkinson is now considered cancer-free, he said his peace of mind was shattered forever when his doctor first told him he had the disease.

“Our country had no reluctance to send us to war, but it has dragged its feet following up on the war’s impact,” he said.

Richard Davis, a VFW service officer who helps veterans file disability claims at the VA Hospital in Iowa City, said he can relate to his clients’ frustration.

“I know exactly what they are going through,” said Davis, who retired from the Army in 2002 and subsequently spent 18 months awaiting approval of his disability claim.

Davis said the list of “presumptive illnesses” related to Agent Orange exposure includes several kinds of cancer, heart disease, type 2 diabetes, Parkinson’s disease and neuropathy, which is characterized by tingling or loss of feeling in the extremities.

Since 2010, the VA has presumed these conditions are service-connected to herbicide exposure in Vietnam, enabling veterans with those illnesses who served in Vietnam from 1962 through 1975 to claim benefits without having to prove the connection. That presumption has not yet been extended to “blue water” sailors who served well off the coast.

Ron Williams, 67, of Marion, who was exposed to Agent Orange during his Army service in Vietnam in 1966 and 1967, suffers from diabetes and neuropathy.

Williams said he felt the same frustration as Wilkinson during his more-than-two-year quest for disability benefits, which entailed several appeals.

“They try to see if they can wear you out. You’ve got to outwait the suckers,” said Williams, who volunteers to help veterans twice a week at the Veterans Affairs Hospital in Iowa City.

Both Williams and Wilkinson said their criticism of VA bureaucrats does not reflect on the excellent care they have received at the VA hospital in Iowa City.

Remembering Vietnam

“Dioxin is bad stuff — one of the worst carcinogens ever made,” said Dan Gannon, 67, of Ankeny, a member of the Iowa Veterans Affairs Commission and a victim of the toxic chemical.

Gannon said he saw “a lot of defoliated jungle” during his 1969 service as a Marine platoon leader in Vietnam’s central highlands region.

“Agent Orange was the least of my worries. We loved it. It eliminated ambush sites and saved lives,” he said.

Gannon was diagnosed with prostate cancer in 2003. Though three of his friends have died of the same illness, Gannon survived and has since been engaged in helping other veterans secure their rightful benefits.

“One day they would spray. The next day half the foliage would be dead,” said Denny Myers, 63, of Marshalltown, a Navy cryptologist engaged in special operations in Vietnam from 1969 to 1972.

A rash appeared on Myers’ arms and torso shortly after he left Vietnam, and more serious ailments began to surface 10 years later, said Myers, who, like Gannon, helps other vets secure disability benefits.

“It’s not been fun,” said Myers, who considers himself “300 percent disabled,” with diabetes, heart disease, Parkinson’s disease, neuropathy and chloracne, a skin disease.

The VA is 1 million claims behind, resulting in long waits that add to already stressful situations, Gannon said.

Ed Gaudet, 69, of De Witte, who served in Vietnam with the Army’s 1st Infantry Division in 1965 and 1966, suffers from three of the Agent Orange “presumptive” ailments — heart disease, diabetes and neuropathy.

“I remember having it sprayed on me. We slept on our ponchos when we were on patrol. We didn’t think twice about it. We ate the fruit and drank the water,” said Gaudet, who also helps veterans secure disability benefits.

Gaudet said 60 percent of the Vietnam vets he knows have ailments related to Agent Orange.

“Uncle Sam did that to us. It hurts when you know your own country did it to you,” he said.

http://thegazette.com/2013/03/27/agent-orange-still-haunts-iowa-vietnam-vets/

Photo: Pope John Paul II is welcomed by Augusto Pinochet as he arrives in Santiago on April 1, 1987. The Vatican once dismissed reports of massacres by Chilean dictator Augusto Pinochet as “Communist propaganda”, according to US diplomatic and intelligence documents from the 1970s leaked on Monday

AFP – The Vatican once dismissed reports of massacres by Chilean dictator Augusto Pinochet as “Communist propaganda”, according to US diplomatic and intelligence documents from the 1970s leaked on Monday.

One cable dated October 18, 1973 sent to Washington by the US embassy to the Holy See relayed a conversation with the Vatican’s then deputy Secretary of State, Giovanni Benelli, the leak by whistleblowing website WikiLeaks showed.

Benelli expressed “his and the pope’s grave concern over successful international leftist campaign to misconstrue completely realities of Chilean situation,” read the cable to then US Secretary of State Henry Kissinger.

“Benelli labelled exaggerated coverage of events as possibly greatest success of Communist propaganda,” it said, adding that the Italian monsignor said this showed “how Communists can influence free world media in future”.

“As is unfortunately natural following coup d’etat, Benelli observed, there has admittedly been bloodshed during mopping up procedures in Chile,” it said. But Benelli went on to say that Chilean bishops had assured him “that stories alleging brutal reprisals in international media are unfounded.”

The conversation took place five weeks after army general Pinochet took power in a coup that overthrew the socialist regime of Salvador Allende, as thousands of perceived leftist sympathisers were being imprisoned and killed.

The cables also showed the Vatican later realised the full extent of the abuses being carried out but refused to criticise Pinochet’s regime openly and continued with normal diplomatic relations.

http://www.france24.com/en/20130408-vatican-said-pinochet-killings-were-propaganda-leak

“ … ‘If the government shows up in your neighborhood, essentially every phone is going to check in with the government,’ said the ACLU’s Soghoian. … “

Blocked by a Supreme Court decision from using GPS tracking devices without a warrant, federal investigators and other law enforcement agencies are turning to a new, more powerful and more threatening technology in their bid to spy more freely on those they suspect of drug crimes. That’s leading civil libertarians, electronic privacy advocates, and even some federal judges to raise the alarm about a new surveillance technology whose use has yet to be taken up definitively by the federal courts.

The new surveillance technology is the StingRay (also marketed as Triggerfish, IMSI Catcher, Cell-site Simulator or Digital Analyzer), a sophisticated, portable spy device able to track cell phone signals inside vehicles, homes and insulated buildings. StingRay trackers act as fake cell towers, allowing police investigators to pinpoint location of a targeted wireless mobile by sucking up phone data such as text messages, emails and cell-site information.

When a suspect makes a phone call, the StingRay tricks the cell into sending its signal back to the police, thus preventing the signal from traveling back to the suspect’s wireless carrier. But not only does StingRay track the targeted cell phone, it also extracts data off potentially thousands of other cell phone users in the area.

Although manufactured by a Germany and Britain-based firm, the StingRay devices are sold in the US by the Harris Corporation, an international telecommunications equipment company. It gets between $60,000 and $175,000 for each Stingray it sells to US law enforcement agencies.

[While the US courts are only beginning to grapple with StingRay, the high tech cat-and-mouse game between cops and criminals continues afoot. Foreign hackers reportedly sell an underground IMSI tracker to counter the Stingray to anyone who asks for $1000. And in December 2011, noted German security expert Karsten Nohl released “Catcher Catcher,” powerful software that monitors a network’s traffic to seek out the StingRay in use.]

Originally intended for terrorism investigations, the feds and local law enforcement agencies are now using the James Bond-type surveillance to track cell phones in drug war cases across the nation without a warrant. Federal officials say that is fine — responding to a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request filed by the Electronic Freedom Foundation (EFF) and the First Amendment Coalition, the Justice Department argued that no warrant was needed to use StingRay technology.

“If a device is not capturing the contents of a particular dialogue call, the device does not require a warrant, but only a court order under the Pen Register Statute showing the material obtained is relevant to an ongoing investigation,” the department wrote.

The FBI claims that it is adhering to lawful standards in using StingRay. “The bureau advises field officers to work closely with the US Attorney’s Office in their districts to comply with legal requirements,” FBI spokesman Chris Allen told the Washington Post last week, but the agency has refused to fully disclose whether or not its agents obtain probable cause warrants to track phones using the controversial device.

And the federal government’s response to the EFF’s FOIA about Stingray wasn’t exactly responsive. While the FOIA request generated over 20,000 records related to StingRay, the Justice Department released only a pair of court orders and a handful of heavily redacted documents that didn’t explain when and how the technology was used.

The LA Weekly reported in January that the StingRay “intended to fight terrorism was used in far more routine Los Angeles Police criminal investigations,” apparently without the courts’ knowledge that it probes the lives of non-suspects living in the same neighborhood with a suspect.

Critics say the technology wrongfully invades technology and that its uncontrolled use by law enforcement raised constitutional questions. “It is the biggest threat to cell phone privacy you don’t know about,” EFF said in a statement.

ACLU privacy researcher Christopher Soghoian told a Yale Law School Location Tracking and Biometrics Conferencepanel last month that “the government uses the device either when a target is routinely and quickly changing phones to thwart a wiretap or when police don’t have sufficient cause for a warrant.”

“The government is hiding information about new surveillance technology not only from the public, but even from the courts,” ACLU staff attorney Linda Lye wrote in a legal brief in the first pending federal StingRay case (see below). “By keeping courts in the dark about new technologies, the government is essentially seeking to write its own search warrants, and that’s not how the Constitution works.”

Lye further expressed concern over the StingRay’s ability to interfere with cell phone signals in violation of Federal Communication Act. “We haven’t seen documents suggesting the LAPD or any other agency have sought or obtained FCC authorization,” she wrote.

“If the government shows up in your neighborhood, essentially every phone is going to check in with the government,” said the ACLU’s Soghoian. “The government is sending signals through people’s walls and clothes and capturing information about innocent people. That’s not much different than using invasive technology to search every house on a block,” Soghoian said during interviews with reporters covering the StingRay story.

Advocates also raised alarms over another troubling issue: Using the StingRay allows investigators to bypass the routine process of obtaining fee-based location data from cell service providers like Sprint, AT&T, Verizon, T-Mobile and Comcast. Unlike buying location data fro service providers, using StingRay leaves no paper trail for defense attorneys.

Crack defense attorney Stephen Leckar who scored a victory in a landmark Supreme Court decision over the feds’ warrantless use of a GPS tracker in US v. Jones, a cocaine trafficking case where the government tracked Jones’ vehicle for weeks without a warrant, also has concerns.

“Anytime the government refuses to disclose the ambit of its investigatory device, one has to wonder, what’s really happening,” he told the Chronicle. ”If without a warrant the feds use this sophisticated device for entry into people’s homes, accessing private information, they may run afoul of a concurring opinion by Justice Alito, who ruled in US v Jones whether people would view unwarranted monitoring of their home or property as Constitutionally repugnant.”

Leckar cited Supreme Court precedent in Katz v. US (privacy) and US v. Kyllo (thermal imaging), where the Supreme Court prohibited searches conducted by police from outside the home to obtain information behind closed doors. Similar legal thinking marked February’s Supreme Court decision in a case where it prohibited the warrantless use of drug dogs to sniff a residence, Florida v. Jardines.

The EFF FOIA lawsuit shed light on how the US government sold StingRay devices to state and local law enforcement agencies for use specifically in drug cases. The Los Angeles and Fort Worth police departments have publicly acknowledged buying the devices, and records show that they are using them for drug investigations.

“Out of 155 cell phone investigations conducted by LAPD between June and September 2012, none of these cases involved terrorism, but primarily involved drugs and other felonies,” said Peter Scheer, director of the First Amendment Center.

The StingRay technology is so new and so powerful that it not only raises Fourth Amendment concerns, it also raises questions about whether police and federal agents are withholding information about it from judges to win approval to monitor suspects without meeting the probable cause standard required by the Fourth. At least one federal judge thinks they are. Magistrate Judge Brian Owsley of the Southern District of Texas in Corpus Christi told the Yale conference federal prosecutors are using clever techniques to fool judges into allowing use of StingRay. They will draft surveillance requests to appear as Pen Register applications, which don’t need to meet the probable cause standards.

“After receiving a second StingRay request,” Owsley told the panel, “I emailed every magistrate judge in the country telling them about the device. And hardly anyone understood them.”

In a earlier decision related to a Cell-site Simulator, Judge Owsley denied a DEA request to obtain data information to identify where the cell phone belonging to a drug trafficker was located. DEA wanted to use the suspect’s E911 emergency tracking system that is operated by the wireless carrier. E911 trackers reads signals sent to satellites from a cell phone’s GPS chip or by triangulation of radio transmitted signal. Owsley told the panel that federal agents and US attorneys often apply for a court order to show that any information obtained with a StingRay falls under the Stored Communication Act and the Pen Register statute.

DEA later petitioned Judge Owsley to issue an order allowing the agent to track a known drug dealer with the StingRay. DEA emphasized to Owsley how urgently they needed approval because the dealer had repeatedly changed cell phones while they spied on him. Owsley flatly denied the request, indicating the StingRay was not covered under federal statute and that DEA and prosecutors had failed to disclose what they expected to obtain through the use of the stored data inside the drug dealer’s phone, protected by the Fourth Amendment.

“There was no affidavit attached to demonstrate probable cause as required by law under rule 41 of federal criminal procedures,” Owsley pointed out. The swiping of data off wireless phones is “cell tower dumps on steroids,” Owsley concluded.

But judges in other districts have ruled favorably for the government. A federal magistrate judge in Houston approved DEA request for cell tower data without probable cause. More recently, New York Southern District Federal Magistrate Judge Gabriel Gorenstein approved warrantless cell-site data.

“The government did not install the tracking device — and the cell user chose to carry the phone that permitted transmission of its information to a carrier,” Gorenstein held in that opinion. “Therefore no warrant is needed.”

In a related case, US District Court Judge Liam O’Grady of the Northern District of Virginia ruled that the government could obtain data from Twitter accounts of three Wikileakers without a warrant. Because they had turned over their IP addresses when they opened their Twitter accounts, they had no expectation of privacy, he ruled.

“Petitioners knew or should have known that their IP information was subject to examination by Twitter, so they had a lessened expectation of privacy in that information, particularly in light of their apparent consent to the Twitter terms of service and privacy policy,” Judge O’Grady wrote.

A federal judge in Arizona is now set to render a decision in the nation’s first StingRay case. After a hearing last week, the court in US v. Rigmaiden is expected to issue a ruling that could set privacy limits on how law enforcement uses the new technology. Just as the issue of GPS tracking technology eventually ended up before the Supreme Court, this latest iteration of the ongoing balancing act between enabling law enforcement to do its job and protecting the privacy and Fourth Amendment rights of citizens could well be headed there, too.

http://www.theweedblog.com/feds-new-cell-phone-spying-device-raising-privacy-concerns/

Also see:FBI loses appeal in StingRay surveillance case

Northern, WI 04/09/2013 (indicesmedia) – Several food-makers have been violating a California State law that requires them to print lead level warnings on baby-food and fruit juice labels. Dole Food Company, Inc (NYSE:DOLE) (current: $10.59, Up by 0.57%) and the Gerber unit owned by Nestle are amongst those facing trial for the offense.

In its 2011 lawsuit, the Environmental Law Foundation said that Gerber, Dole and Del Monte Foods co. manufacture kid’s food which contains lead. These companies have to either reduce the lead levels or put print warnings on the labels. California’s Proposition 65 is a toxins-warning law that states that companies have to follow these labeling norms.

Many foods included in list

The trial is expected to last for four weeks and the first day testimony was heard by the California Superior Court, Oakland Judge Stephen Brick. An expert who represented the food-makers averred that the analysis conducted by the foundation in reality overestimates the lead exposure in children, by these products. The overestimation has been attributed to the fact that the assumption of the analysis is that these products are consumed every single day, which in effect is not the case, said the principal scientist at Exponent, Barbara Petersen. Exponent is a scientific and engineering consultancy. These products include packaged pears, grape juice, packaged peaches in addition to other baby foods that contain those fruits, sweet potatoes and carrots.

Widespread repercussions

The Sedgwick LLP attorney, Carol Brophy who is experienced in handling Proposition 65 Lawsuits said that the companies, food stores as well as consumers have very high stakes in such cases. If Dole and the other companies lose, it will be much more than baby food that will get affected. Brophy is not involved in this particular case but said that it will necessitate that every food product that is sold in California State will have to carry a lead warning. This is bound to cause a lot of confusion amongst customers as well and mothers are going to be sacred.

The Westlake Village, California-based Dole is the world’s biggest fresh fruit juice manufacturer. Nestle, which is headquartered in Vevey, Switzerland is the biggest food company in the world. KKR & Co. L.P (NYSE:KKR) (Current: $19.33, Down by 0.46%) controls the San Francisco-based Del Monte.

http://www.indicesmedia.com/kids-food-lead-content-leads-to-warning-label-lawsuit-dole-kkr-948