Monday, September 30, 2013

Bring On The Rubber-Stamp

Tomorrows the day!

I wonder how many people in Eureka believe they had some say in the choice and the hiring of the new Eureka Police Chief?

According to Lorna Rodriguez for the Times-Standard newspaper: "The Eureka City Council on Tuesday (tomorrow) will vote on approving the hiring of Eureka's new police chief."

She continues: "San Diego Police Department Capt. Andrew G. Mills is expected to start leading the Eureka Police Department on Nov. 4, according to a staff report. He will be paid $142,500 annually."

"The city has searched for a new chief since June 2011, when former City Manager David Tyson fired Garr Nielsen without cause. Nielsen was popular with the public, but met strong resistance from some within the department."

The last police chief, the one before and after Murl Harpham "was popular with the public, but met strong resistance from some within the department." That should tell you something about this new guy, specially when Murl Harpham gives his blessings. I'd say he deserves what he gets and so do the people of Euraka.

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

What Bodes Well for Eureka?

On Thursday, September 12, 2013, the Times-Standard announced to everyone that City Manager Bill Panos had hired San Diego Police Department Captain Andrew G. Mills and "plans to put him before the City Council for confirmation and is expected to take over the force". -("Next Eureka police chief announced") And that after a former Eureka police officer Mike Johnson, Panos' original choice "withdrew from the process" "sharply critical of Panos".


On Saturday, September 14, 2013, the Times-Standard Headline says:  Eureka city manager accepts post in Wyoming.

Another worthy note of interest, Mayor Frank Jager says, among other gushing accolades, "Mills is an outstanding candidate." Considering the City Council's record on hiring City Mangers, I wouldn't put much trust in Jager's opinions and judgments.  Nor would I put much trust in Panos' judgments either.

Selecting Mike Johnson, with his record, was an insult to everyone that came forward requesting a different kind of police department as currently enforced by Murl Harpham and his so-call "tough cops." That fact alone puts Murl Harpham's unmistakable stamp on who becomes Eureka's future police chief. When you consider the history, it's obvious he's the primary reason Garr Nielsen was run off the way he was. Now he's having a major input in the selection of this new guy. ('We are one Body" - Times-Standard, Sunday, Sept. 15, 2013) Panos comes into Eureka, via the current City Council, does his dirty work and is allowed to leave sooner than - his contract says, later.

Does Andy Mills as Eureka's new police chief bode well for this town? Considering how he was hired and the City Council's facilitation of Bill Pano's quick  exit, one wonders. Did the local voices in all those so-called special town meetings for input on the new chief result in anything more than a stall for Murl Harpham to protect and reintrench his legacy? I think not.

Notice what Mills says after speaking about all the people he plans on listening to, specially the cops, before implementing any plans.

"Mills said there will be one thing that's “non-negotiable” in this process."

”We will treat people with respect, and that's both directions -- the police to the public and the public to the police,” he said. “We are one body.”

Respect is something that is earned - not demanded or dictated. I think we all know what that means, code for "keep your trap shut," "speak when spoken to," and "do what your told."

If the portend new police chief wants the community's respect then he can live and operate within the law. He can earn that respect by example as demonstrated by him and his police force by what they do, not by what they say.

One last point, I take exception to his affirmation that the Eureka community, (as he says the "people" and "the public,") and "the police" are "one body." The Eureka community and its government are one body. The Eureka voting citizens are the body, and they elect their representative governmental representatives, the City Council. It is proven that they, the voting citizens have no direct say in who is the police chief or who are it's police officers. That body's police department, including it's police chief, is it's (the body's) billy club used to enforce it's laws - it's will. The police are nothing more than a tool brought to bear on the general public by that community's elected representatives.

So, does Andy Mills as Eureka's new police chief bode well for this town? I guess we'll all find out.

Friday, September 13, 2013

"what makes us exceptional"

"That’s what makes America different."
--President Obama in a national address from the White House Tuesday night, September 10, 2013.

American's are exceptionally different alright, but not in the way Obama wants to say.  You can believe President Barack Obama's pack of uncontested lies or you can stick to the facts.

Naom Chomsky sets forth seventy years worth of facts in his latest conversation on Democracy Now.

Here's an excerpt as he comments on the Presidential address of September 10, 2013, regarding his plans to go to war with Syria.  If you want to know how the whole world sees America you need to read his complete commentary.  At some point decent, God-fearing people always put down the rogue bully.

NOAM CHOMSKYWell, the Russian plan is a godsend for Obama. It saves him from what would look like a very serious political defeat. He has not been able to obtain virtually any international support for this—the action he’s contemplating. Even Britain wouldn’t support it. And it looked as though Congress wasn’t going to support it either, which would leave him completely out on a limb. This leaves him a way out. 
He can maintain the threat of force, which incidentally is a crime under international law, that we should bear in mind that the core principle of the United Nations Charter bars the threat or use of force, threat or use of force. So all of this is criminal, to begin with, but he’ll continue with that. The United States is a rogue state. It doesn’t pay any attention to international law. 
He—it was kind of interesting what he didn’t say. This would be a perfect opportunity to ban chemical weapons, to impose the chemical weapons convention on the Middle East. The convention, contrary to what Obama said, does not specifically refer just to use of chemical weapons; it refers to production, storage or use of chemical weapons. That’s banned by the international norm that Obama likes to preach about. Well, there is a country which happens to be—happens to have illegally annexed part of Syrian territory, which has chemical weapons and is in violation of the chemical weapons convention and has refused even to ratify it—namely, Israel. So here’s an opportunity to eliminate chemical weapons from the region, to impose the chemical weapons convention as it’s actually formulated. But Obama was very careful not to say that he—for reasons which are too obvious to go into—he—and that gap is highly significant. Of course, chemical weapons should be eliminated everywhere, but certainly in that region. 
The other things that he said were not unusual, but nevertheless kind of shocking to anyone not familiar with U.S. political discourse, at least. So he described the United—he said that for seven decades the United States has been "the anchor of global security." Really? Seven decades? That includes, for example, just 40 years ago today, when the United States played a major role in overthrowing the parliamentary democracy of Chile and imposing a brutal dictatorship, called "the first 9/11" in Latin America. Go back earlier years, overthrowing the parliamentary system in Iran, imposing a dictatorship; same in Guatemala a year later; attacking Indochina, the worst crime in the postwar period, killing millions of people; attacking Central America; killing—involved in killing—in imposing a dictatorship in the Congo; and invading Iraq—on and on. That’s stability? I mean, that a Harvard Law School graduate can pronounce those words is pretty amazing, as is the fact that they’re accepted without comment. 
So what he said is I’m going to lie like a trooper about history; I’m going to suppress the U.S. role, the actual U.S. role, for the last seven decades; I’m going to maintain the threat of force, which is of course illegal; and I’m going to ensure that the chemical weapons convention is not imposed on the region, because our ally, Israel, would be subjected to it. And I think those are some of the main points of his address.
It always comes back to protecting Israel, doesn't it?  Ever wonder why Israel is so important to America? Both Israel and the United States a violent military states.  A historical reality that decries their legitimacy as a sovereign country.

Read the first part of th interview here on Democracy Now.
The second part of the interview (Chomsky on 9/11, Syria’s "Bloody Partition" and Why U.S. Role Ensures Failure of Mideast Talks) here.
The third and final part of the interview (Noam Chomsky: U.S. Has Been "Torturing" Iran for 60 Years, Since 1953 CIA-Led Coup).