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Sunday, December 27, 2009

Jackie Curry Dies.

DETROIT -- Police said, Former Detroit City Clerk Jackie Currie was found dead in her home Sunday.
Investigators said Currie died of natural causes.

Saturday, December 26, 2009

Passengers help foil attack on Detroit-bound plane

Saturday, December 26, 2009
ROMULUS, Mich. (AP) — An attempted terrorist attack on a Christmas Day flight began with a pop and a puff of smoke — sending passengers scrambling to subdue a Nigerian man who claimed to be acting on orders from al-Qaida to blow up the airliner, officials and travelers said.
The commotion began as Northwest Airlines Flight 253, carrying 278 passengers and 11 crew members from Amsterdam, prepared to land in Detroit just before noon Friday. Travelers said they smelled smoke, saw a glow, and heard what sounded like firecrackers. At least one person climbed over others and jumped on the man, who officials say was trying to ignite an explosive device.
"It sounded like a firecracker in a pillowcase," said Peter Smith, a passenger from the Netherlands. "First there was a pop, and then (there) was smoke."
Smith said one passenger, sitting opposite the man, climbed over passengers, went across the aisle and tried to restrain the man. The heroic passenger appeared to have been burned.
Afterward, the suspect was taken to a front-row seat with his pants cut off and his legs burned. Multiple law enforcement officials also said the man appeared badly burned on his legs, indicating the explosive was strapped there. The components were apparently mixed in-flight and included a powdery substance, multiple law enforcement and counterterrorism officials said.
The White House said it believed it was an attempted act of terrorism and stricter security measures were quickly imposed on airline travel. Dutch anti-terrorism authorities said the U.S. has asked all airlines to take extra precautions on flights worldwide that are bound for the United States.
The incident was reminiscent of Richard Reid, who tried to destroy a trans-Atlantic flight in 2001 with explosives hidden in his shoes, but was subdued by other passengers.
Multiple law enforcement officials identified the suspect in Friday's attempted attack as Umar Farouk Abdul Mutallab. He was described as Nigerian.
One law enforcement official said the man claimed to have been instructed by al-Qaida to detonate the plane over U.S. soil, but other law enforcement officials cautioned that such claims could not be verified immediately, and said the man may have been acting independently — inspired but not specifically trained or ordered by terror groups.
All the officials spoke on condition of anonymity because the investigation was continuing.
Intelligence and anti-terrorism officials in Yemen said they were investigating claims by the suspect that he picked up the explosive device and instructions on how to use it in that country. The officials spoke on condition of anonymity because they are not authorized to speak to the media.
The man was being questioned Friday evening. An intelligence official said he was being held and treated in an Ann Arbor, Mich., hospital. The hospital said one passenger from the flight was taken to the University of Michigan Medical Center in Ann Arbor, but referred all inquiries to the FBI.
Melinda Dennis, who was seated in the front row of the plane, said the man involved was brought to the front row and seated near her. She said his legs appeared to be badly burned and his pants were cut off. She said he was taken off the plane handcuffed to a stretcher.
One law enforcement official, also speaking on condition of anonymity, said Mutallab's name had surfaced earlier on at least one U.S. intelligence database, but he was not on a watch list or a no-fly list.
The suspect boarded in Nigeria and went through Amsterdam en route to Detroit, Rep. Peter King, the ranking GOP member of the House Homeland Security Committee, told CNN. A spokeswoman for police at the Schiphol airport in Amsterdam declined comment about the case or about security procedures at the airport for Flight 253.
Dutch airline KLM says the connection in Amsterdam from Lagos, Nigeria, to Detroit involves a change in carrier and a change in aircraft.
Schiphol airport, one of Europe's busiest with a heavy load of transit passengers from Africa and Asia to North America, strictly enforces European security regulations including only allowing small amounts of liquid in hand luggage that must be placed inside clear plastic bags.
A spokesman for the Federal Airports Authority of Nigeria, Akin Olukunle, said all passengers and their luggage are screened before boarding international flights. He also said the airport in Lagos cleared a U.S. Transportation Security Administration audit in November.
"We had a pass mark," Olukunle said. "We actually are up to standards in all senses."
Nigeria's information minister, Dora Akunyili, condemned the attempted bombing. She said the government has opened its own investigation into the suspect and will work with U.S. authorities.
"We state very clearly that as a nation we abhor all forms of violence," Akunyili said in a statement issued Saturday.
London's Metropolitan Police also was working with U.S. officials, said a spokeswoman who spoke on condition of anonymity in line with department policy. A search was under way Saturday at an apartment building where Mutallab is said to have lived in a posh West London neighborhood.
University College London issued a statement saying a student named Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab studied mechanical engineering there between September 2005 and June 2008. But the college said it wasn't certain the student was the same person who was on the plane.
Delta Air Lines Inc., which acquired Northwest last year, said a passenger caused a disturbance, was subdued, and the crew requested that law enforcement officials meet the flight.
Passenger Syed Jafri, a U.S. citizen who had flown from the United Arab Emirates, said the incident occurred during the plane's descent. Jafri said he was seated three rows behind the passenger and said he saw a glow, and noticed a smoke smell. Then, he said, "a young man behind me jumped on him."
"Next thing you know, there was a lot of panic," he said.
Federal officials said there would be heightened security for both domestic and international flights at airports across the country, but the intensified levels would likely be "layered," differing from location to location depending on alerts, security concerns and other factors.
Passengers can expect to see heightened screening, more bomb-sniffing dog and officer units and behavioral-detection specialists at some airports, but there will also be unspecified less visible precautions as well, officials said.
Sen. Jay Rockefeller, D-W.Va., the chairman of the Senate Commerce Committee, said in a statement he would hold hearings in January to look into the incident and related security issues.
The FBI and the Homeland Security Department issued an intelligence note on Nov. 20 about the threat picture for the holiday season, which was obtained by The Associated Press. At the time, officials said they had no specific information about attack plans by al-Qaida or other terrorist groups.
President Barack Obama was notified of the incident and discussed it with security officials, the White House said. Officials said he is monitoring the situation and receiving regular updates from his vacation spot in Hawaii.
Associated Press Writers Lara Jakes in Baghdad, Iraq, Jon Gambrell in Lagos, Nigeria, Arthur Max in Amsterdam, Jennifer Quinn in London, Ahmed al-Haj in Yemen, and Larry Margasak and Devlin Barrett in Washington contributed to this report.

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Sam Riddle: Is he spinning out of control?

3 November 2009, it is the night of the most historic elections in Detroit’s history and there in the lobby of the Double Tree Hotel was Sam Riddle. I walked over to him put out my hand and said “Hello, do you think you can recognize me?”

He looked and said “Give me a hint.”
“Facebook.” I said.
“Oh yeah! You’re Herbie, nice to meet you. I read your stuff and I like it, you tell the truth. Are you going to run again?”
“ I don’t know?” I said unsurely. “Maybe.”
“You should, because people need to hear what you have to say. Although; I only agree with you 30% of the time.” He said jokingly “You should run again. Let me give you some advice. Use the media, if people don’t know what you stand for, they won’t give a damn. You could be right about many things, but if no one hears you, who cares.”
More was exchanged, but I’ll stop the story here. The advice was good, so good that I took it to heart and when I heard about an opportunity to host my own internet radio show, I jumped at the chance.
I meet Sam Riddle for only a short time, but he gave me sometime timeless, advice. The Sam Riddle I meet was in control, at that time, and seemed happy (Even with everything that was going on in his life.). He has said that he was scared. “If you have the People of the United States of America after you, you’ll be scared too.” Maybe the pressure was just too much for him too handle. Being indicted with too separate felony cases, his battle with alcohol, and being told not to talk on Facebook and Twitter (The judge said he could use the latter, but do not talk about the case. Which he didn’t in great detail.), Sam fought this order in the court of public opinion as a Constitutional issue. Which leads to my question? What was Sam thinking? Was Sam drinking again? Could all of this have been too much for Sam too handle? Could this have been avoided?
It all came to ahead when he was arrested Monday for allegedly pointing a loaded gun at his ‘live-in’ girlfriend, Mary Waters, after she caught him with other woman. Just hours before posting and interacting with his Facebook friends, he could have never imagined what would come next. Jailed, standing mute to the charges, spending the night in a cold jail with Christmas just around the corner. Not the way he planned his day, I’m sure.
I don’t want to sound like a Sam apologetics’, but does this sound like the Sam we think we know? Allegedly taking and or arranging bribes is one thing, but allegedly holding a gun up to someone is totally different. One is a white color crime of corruption, the other, a blue color crime of passion. If this is true, then his crimes are escalating and I’m afraid of what could be next. Mr. Riddle has a lot of soul searching to do in the coming months. With now three separate cases against him the pressure will only become greater and the mountain harder to climb.
If and when he gets out of jail and goes back on Facebook, he will find on his page that many people are both for and against him. Many send their love and prayers, while others send their hatred and detestation for him. No matter how you feel about the man or his actions, one thing is for sure. Sam Riddle needs help.
That’s my two cents, what’s your?
Mary Waters press release from Dec. 23, 2009 ‘Mary Waters Sets Record Straight’

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Will The Charter Commission look at term limits?

The nine member charter commission will hear from the community about a great number of issues, and the one issue that I will bring up is that of term limits. Term limits is a 50-50 issue, either you like it or you do not. There is no right answer to this question, but for me there is only one clear cut answer. YES!!!

Term limits have not served our State Representatives very well, due in part that they have only Two year terms and can sever a maximum of six years. One year their doing/learning their jobs, by year two they are on the campaign trial. This cycle repeats itself every two years or until their voted out. The Mayor, City Clerk, and City Council all serve four year terms. This I believe is a very different horse of a whole different color. I understand your argument of “We can just vote them out.” but do we vote them out? History tells us that we do not simply vote them out. In this election two incumbents were voted out, one other was kicked out of office after pledging guilty to a felony bribery charge, while two others decided not to run at all. After all the smoke was cleared, 5 new council members filled the shoes of the 3 vacant slots, while the other two seats were voted out. Read the last sentence again and tell me is this change. I think not. We gain 5 new council members but only 2 were voted out, one in the primary and the other in the general. When was the last time a city council incumbent was voted out? I didn’t look this information up so if you know the answer please forward the answer to me, and bravo for your political awareness. I am willing to bet however that it was not in the last Twenty years. Read the last sentence again, not in the last twenty years. Where were you twenty years ago? If I’m wrong again please drop me a line.

Now let us move on to the office of Mayor, when was the last time a Mayor was voted out of office? I’m willing to bet not in the last Forty years. Read the last sentence again, not in the last forty years. Again, if I’m wrong please drop me a line. How many of you think that Mayor Coleman Young stayed in office just a little too long? How many of you would have voted for Dennis Archer for a third term? What about a fourth? How many of you would have voted for Kwame Kilpatrick for a third term if he had not gone to jail? What about a fourth and so on? No matter how badly these public officials perform, or how many times they lie to us, we vote them all back in. Are we afraid of change? How do we change the mind set of a community that is afraid to vote for someone other than an incumbent? We can’t, and that is my final answer.

What about the office of City Clerk? In the last election ‘city clerk for life’ Jackie Curry actually lost to new comer Janice Winfrey. Other than the last election, when was the last time a city clerk was voted out? I don’t know the answer to this off hand either, but was it in the 16 years? If you know the answer to this, again drop me a line.

I know what you’re saying. “He should have looked this up before writing his blog.” Well I didn’t because I don’t need to. I know we don’t vote incumbents out, they just fade away. Or run for another office, or get haul away in handcuffs, but we don’t vote them out. With this last election being the exception and not the rule, this has to change.

Incumbents get lazy, complacent, and bored and this we don’t need. What we need is someone who will work in the interest of the people, and not in the interest of themselves. We need someone who will work assiduously for not only our city but their city as well. Complacence with ones self will no longer be tolerated, boredom will no longer be tolerated, and laziness will certainly no longer be tolerated, not by me or anyone else who loves this city. I like our new council, if you think about it; it is truly a new council. All but one of the new council has four years or less in office. When was the last time that happen? I don’t know the answer to the… you know the rest.

Seriously, we need term limits in this city. We deserve fresh minds with fresh ideals. I believe we are moving in this direction because 168 candidates for city council have told us so. Some of them were not qualified for the office, but they were willing to try. Some couldn’t get their campaigns off the ground, but they were willing to try. Some had the heart and desire but didn’t have the wherewithal to continue, but they were all willing to try. These 168 candidates were all willing to turn this city around, away from the corruption and futile leadership that we have endured for so many years now. Only 5 made the final cut, but they all made a difference.
I was just looking at a Facebook post and it goes perfectly with my story.

"A politician in power tends to remain in power." -- Neal Boortz's "First Rule of Political Dynamics"

People are resisted to change; when they stay in office too long we have nothing but contempt towards our chosen leaders, the very people we voted for just a mere 16 years ago. We now can’t wait for them to leave. If there hadn’t been so many great candidates in the last election, Alberta Tinsley-Talabi would have made it for her 5th term in office (that’s 20 years folks).

If you haven’t done what you needed to do in 12 years, then you need to leave. What difference would 4 more years make if you hadn’t done it in the last 12? Don’t be fooled any longer by their speeches, by their past accomplishments (Or a lack there of), and don’t let them dazzle you with their B.S. any longer. Enough is enough; it is time to take charge. Come with me to the charter commission meetings and tell them we want terms limits for the Mayor (2 terms, 8 years), City Clerk (3 terms, 12 years), and City Council ( 3 terms, 12 years).

If you disagree with terms limits I invite you to comment.

Remember, you get what you VOTE for, VOTE Detroit!

Friday, December 4, 2009

Fanchon Stinger V.S. Rayford Jackson?

We heard both sides of the story Fanchon Stinger the successful, beautiful former anchor woman at Fox 2 Detroit. Rayford Jackson, the successful business man who wanted to bring Detroit back though development. We heard both sides of this terrific story, now it is time for the truth. What is the truth.

Was R. Jackson the woman beater that F. Stinger makes him out to be? Was F. Stinger a home wreaker and personal bank to R. Jackson? Only those two know the answers to these questions in earnest.

I have some questions that I would like answered. Why was F. Stinger fired from her job just by the mere mention of her name on a news report by fellow employee Scott Lewis? Why is on one going after this convicted felon who cheated on his wife and 4 children?

R. Jackson will say nothing to the F.B.I., not ever to reduce his sentence, but when F. Stinger opens her mouth he is ready to talk. He called FOX 2 to tell his story, Fox 2 didn’t call him. Most people in Detroit is on this mans side, but he is the one who bribed a city council person. He is the one that is going to the penitentiary for 5 years, not Fanchon Stinger. Ms. Stinger is being painted as a lair (which she could very be a lair.) about being abused. He could have abused her but she didn’t have a black eye, she showed up for work everyday looking beautiful as ever. So who do we believe?

Do we believe the convicted felon, or do we believe the pretty face. I’ll leave that judgment up to you. They are both lying and both are telling the truth, the truth is somewhere in the middle.

P.S. Answer me this.

Why is Kwame Kilpatrick and Christine Beatty any different than Rayford Jackson and Fanchon Stinger? Both men cheated on their wives and four children, if anything I have more respect for K.K. because he is still married and admits that he still cares for Christine. Rayford threw Fanchon under the bus in his FOX 2 interview. Women, in general, felt more compassion for Christine than they do for Fanchon. When it came to Christine, women said “A women will do anything for love, she fell in love with Kwame.” When it comes to Fanchon, “She is a lying h%$ who is trying to play the sympathy card.” You can’t it both ways, they are either home wreakers or they are both victims. Which is it? There is more to this story than we know, than will we ever know? I say we should threw them all under the bus.

Thursday, December 3, 2009

Swearing-in set for new city council president

Associated Press - December 3, 2009 4:04 AM ET

DETROIT (AP) - Charles Pugh's swearing-in ceremony as Detroit City Council president will be held Thursday at the Election Commission.

City Clerk Janice Winfrey will administer the oath of office to Pugh, who received the most votes in the Nov. 3 general election.

The former television news anchor and reporter is 1 of 5 newcomers to the nine-member council. He calls the ceremony "a monumental moment" in his life and a "blessing." Pugh is Detroit's first openly gay council member.

The new council will be inaugurated Jan. 5, before its first meeting of 2010.

Pugh says in a release that his top priorities as council president include setting higher standards of conduct.

Copyright 2009 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.