Daily Archives: May 25, 2010

Jamacia Police and Drug Gangs Clash in Kingston

Just as millions of American, Canadian and Europeans prepare to go on Vacation (or holiday if you prefer) this summer; battles between drug lords and the Jamaican Police forces are battling or control of Kingston. From Yahoo News:

Jamaica’s security forces clashed with masked gunmen allied with an alleged drug kingpin for a second day Monday as an intensifying multi-front battle against gangs spread to volatile slums outside the capital.

Police and soldiers came under heavy fire in the West Kingston stronghold of Christopher “Dudus” Coke, who is trying to avoid extradition to the U.S. on drug and arms trafficking charges. Military helicopters with mounted guns buzzed above the impoverished area between plumes of black smoke.

The working class area around West Kingston is under siege:

West Kingston, which includes the Trenchtown slum where reggae superstar Bob Marley was raised, is the epicenter of the violence. But on Monday, security forces were also under attack in areas outside that patchwork of gritty slums in the capital on Jamaica’s southeastern coast, far from the virtually crime-free tourist resorts on the north shore.

Gunmen shot at police while trying to erect barricades in a poor section of St. Catherine parish, which is just outside the two parishes where the government on Sunday implemented a monthlong state of emergency.

A police station in an outlying area of Kingston parish also was showered with bullets by a roving band of gunmen with high-powered rifles.

Security Minister say police are in control:

Security Minister Dwight Nelson said “police are on top of the situation,” but gunfire was reported in several poor communities and brazen gunmen shot up Kingston’s central police station. Loud explosions rang across West Kingston on Monday afternoon as police assaulted Coke’s slum stronghold of Tivoli Gardens.

The Jamaica Constabulary Force said two officers have been killed and six injured during firefights with criminal gangs whose arsenals rival police firepower.

“The loss of these two officers and the injury to the six, while difficult to deal with, will only serve as a rallying call for the police to remain strong, committed and firm as we continue to encounter brazen criminals,” said Police Commissioner Owen Ellington.

Ellington said “scores of criminals” from gangs across the Caribbean island had joined the fighting in the Kingston area, where the fear of gun violence has driven many to live behind gated walls with key-pad entry systems and 24-hour security.

AP via Yahoo News has more.

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Update: US Senator Bob Casey Call for Government Take Over Private Industry Union Pensions

From Fox Business There have been whispers of a bailout for civilian union workers now hit happening: US Senator Bob Casey (D-PA)proposed that the non government union workers pensions to be covered by The Pension Benefit Guarantee Corporation.

A Democratic senator is introducing legislation for a bailout of troubled union pension funds.  If passed, the bill could put another $165 billion in liabilities on the shoulders of American taxpayers.

The bill, which would put the Pension Benefit Guarantee Corporation behind struggling pensions for union workers, is being introduced by Senator Bob Casey, (D-Pa.), who says it will save jobs and help people.

Fox Business Anchor/Reporter Gerri Willis says:

These pensions are in bad shape; as of 2006, well before the market dropped and recession began, only 6% of these funds were doing well.

Although right now taxpayers could possibly be on the hook for $165 billion, the liability could essentially be unlimited because these pensions have to be paid out until the workers die.

It’s hard to say at the moment what the chances are that the bill will pass. A hearing is scheduled Thursday, which will give the public a sense of where political leaders sit on the topic, said Willis.

Fox Business

Obama’s Poll Number Continue to Fall to 44% Approval

The latest numbers from Rasmussen Reports found 44% of likely voter approve the job President Obama is doing;  While 54% disapprove. The poll found that 25% strongly approve of the job he is doing; 43% strongly disapprove.

The Rasmussen Reports daily Presidential Tracking Poll for Monday shows that 25% of the nation’s voters Strongly Approve of the way that Barack Obama is performing his role as president. Forty-three percent (43%) Strongly Disapprove, giving Obama a Presidential Approval Index rating of -18%.

President Obama’s brief bump by Democrats after the passage of the Health Care reform law is gone and he has lost Democrat majority:

Following passage of health care, enthusiasm for the president among Democrats soared. Today, however, just 49% of Democrats Strongly Approve of Obama’s performance. That’s down from a high of 65%. It remains to be seen whether this is a temporary aberration or the beginning of a lasting change.

If that’s not enough 63% of those surveyed want to repeal the Heath Care reform legislation.

Rasmussen Reports

Syria President Assad Bashes Obama: Lost Prestige and Influence in Middle East Over Peace.

So much for bowing, scraping and kissing Ass to world leaders. Syria President Bashar Assad slams President Obama on Monday to Italian Newspaper La Reppublica. From Haaretz:

Syrian President Bashar Assad said Monday that the United States has lost its influence in the Middle East due to its failure to contribute to regional peace, in an interview with the Italian newspaper La Repubblica.

U.S. President Barack Obama “raised hopes” in the region, said Assad, but has failed to accomplish any significant peace maneuvers.

The Syrian Dictator remarks come when President Obama meets with the Lebanese Prime Minister:

Assad’s comments came just before Obama was to meet with Lebanon Prime Minister Sa’ad al-Hariri to raise Washington’s concerns about Syria arming Hezbollah guerrillas in Lebanon.

Over the weekend Assad meet with the French about Israel:

The Syrian leader met on Sunday with French Foreign Minister Bernard Kouchner in Damascus earlier Sunday and urged the West to “break its silence” in the face of Israeli “aggression” in the Middle East.

During their talks, Assad denounced “the ongoing Israeli threats to ignite wars and undermine the stability in the region.”

“The region has changed and the West’s policy in the area is no longer acceptable, keeping silent over Israeli violations is no longer acceptable,” Assad told Kouchner, according to Syria’s official news agency SANA.

“If the West wants security and stability to be established in the Middle East, [it] must start to play an effective role to contain Israel and put an end to its extremist policies,” Assad said.

Haaretz has the rest of the story.

Spend-a-holics in Sacramento at it Again Creating $5billion in Taxes and Delaying Tax Credits For Business

Same song 90th verse: Democrats in Sacramento are at it again  they planning to raise taxes, and delay (if not out right kill of ) business tax credits to cut a budget gap of $20 billion. From Reuters:

Democratic lawmakers in California unveiled a plan on Monday for nearly $5 billion of tax and fee increases to help fill the state government’s $19.1 billion budget gap.

Taxes are raised via alcohol, vehicle registration fees and corporate tax breaks:

The plan by state Senate Democrats would raise $4.9 billion by raising California’s vehicle registration fee, suspending corporate tax breaks scheduled to begin next year and boosting the state’s tax on alcoholic beverages.

Republican Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger has come up with a budget that does not raise taxes and cut spending:

Republican Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger, by contrast, has ruled out tax increases and is relying largely on deep spending cuts in his plan for balancing the state’s books. He has called for $12.4 billion of cuts and would scrap the state’s welfare system, a plan Democrats have rejected.

Republican legislators came out swinging against the tax proposals:

Republicans in the legislature’s minority immediately criticized the proposed tax increases, signaling they will use their votes to block them. Democrats lack the votes to pass tax measures on their own.

Analysts expect budget negotiations between Schwarzenegger and lawmakers will drag on and press into the state’s next fiscal year, which begins in July.

California’s leaders are facing another year of weak revenue as a result of the recession and the downturns in financial and real estate markets. (Reporting by Jim Christie of Reuters).

Sacramento doesn’t learn how many jobs will be fleeing California and where are they going to huh? Las Vegas, Miami, Salt Lake City,Denver, Phoenix, Dallas. How many residents will move from California to find work, affordable living,and a better way of life? Who knows but I know that this can’t last and there is resentment by taxpayers and they see Sacramento is an out of control government that is destroying the state.

Reuters