The Department of Homeland Security's Office of Intelligence & Analysis issued a "Domestic Extremism Lexicon" reference aid this week. On the heels of its most recent such reference aid, which named American military veterans returning from Iraq as possible extremists domestic terrorists, the DHS's attempt at inclusiveness seems to know no bounds. It is worth emphasizing that the document specifically identifies "non-Islamic extremism" as a threat to the United States. So now if you are pro-environment, pro-life, pro-Second Amendment, pro-black, pro-Jew, pro-white, anti-16th Amendment, anti-tax and, even pro-animal rights you might very well be a domestic terrorist. The document even names "alternative media" in its lexicon of domestic terrorism.

While the DHS has since rescinded the product and claimed it was not authorized, the proverbial horse is out of the barn, to borrow a recently used phrase from the president. Can there be any more evidence that the Department of Homeland Security, authorized by the unconstitutional USA PATRIOT Act (which was not read by the very legislators who voted for its passing), should be dismantled and moved to the dustbin of history? The "reference aid" provides an eerie insight into the agenda of a continually overreaching and apparently overconfident federal bureaucracy that continues to perpetuate the myth that we the people serve the government. The DHS document is the origin of a "thought police" handbook for the feds and illustrates the intent of the department to label Americans as terrorists if they have thoughts, publish opinions, and pursue actions that are contrary to the Nanny State and promote non-subservience to the government.

The document attempts to paint any of the various special-interest or special-issue factions as violent and criminal. For instance if you are vehemently opposed to illegal immigration, you may be plotting violent or criminal acts ... and thus you might be a domestic terrorist.

Below are some excerpts from the "lexicon," a copy of which can be found here.

(Note: "U//FOUO" means "Unclassified, For Official Use Only.")

"This product provides definitions for key terms and phrases that often appear in DHS analysis that addresses the nature and scope of the threat that domestic, non-Islamic extremism poses to the United States.

"• alternative media (U//FOUO): a term used to describe various information sources that provide a forum for interpretations of events and issues that differ radically from those presented in mass media products and outlets.

"• decentralized terrorist movement (U//FOUO): a movement of groups or individuals who pursue shared ideological goals through tactics of leaderless resistance independent of any larger terrorist organization.

"• direct action (U//FOUO): lawful or unlawful acts of civil disobedience ranging from protests to property destruction or acts of violence."

Apparently, lawful acts of civil disobedience including protesting are going to make one a domestic terrorist in the eyes of the DHS. And if you are "leaderless" in your "resistance," you might be a terrorist. This only begs the question: "Resistance to what?" And of course, there are those damned alternative media outlets that provide a forum (gasp) for interpretations that differ from mass-media products.

The most chilling aspect of this affair is that the person responsible for issuing this document, Roger Mackin, has been shifted from the DHS to the cybersecurity section at the Office of the Director of National Intelligence.

When it comes to the latest hot topics of the day, one will not learn anything new by watching the talking heads on cable news or the networks. Fortunately, technology has come a long way, and all one has to do is browse the Web for perspectives and information that will most certainly raise the bar on the water-cooler dialogue at the office.

To that end, you will find ready-to-go video clips about the following stories that you won't find anywhere else:

April 15 Tea Parties

The Quad Cities hosted two Tea Party protests on the infamous Income Tax Day. More than 500 people attended the Davenport protest, and more than 300 people assembled that afternoon in Moline. The Reader was at both events and has posted a nine-minute video segment that includes interviews with seven people, including an 11-year-old.

The mainstream media picked up on the Tea Parties as a simple way to continue polarizing the masses along strict left/right and us/them party lines. No single outlet could help itself. As a guest on Keith Olbermann's show on MSNBC, Janeane Garofalo described the protest attendees as the "Klan demographic" and "tea-bagging racists who hate having a black man in office." To which Olbermann rhetorically asked, "What happens if at one of these things somebody hurts somebody?" And Fox Noise talk-show host Sean Hannity picked up the banner of the downtrodden tax payer and promoted the Tea Parties as if he had some solidarity with any disenfranchised citizens other than staunch neo-conservatives just like him. It was appalling. The really sad part is that many Americans fell for the "party baiting" hook, line, and sinker, and the only loser in that game was the level of discourse in America.

The bias in the media was no more apparent than when the reporter from CNN accosted a man holding a sign and his two-year-old child. The man's sign was about how his two-year-old was already in debt, and the reporter berated him, demanding whether he knew he was entitled to a check for $400 under the new regime. She wouldn't let him answer her questions, and things got worse from there when she finally claimed, "It is clear this crowd is anti-CNN and anti-government." The clip went viral for a short period, then CNN forced YouTube to take it off the air over copyright issues. Fortunately, FoundingBloggers.com was on-site in Chicago and filmed the dialogue that happened after the CNN cameras were off, and a suburban small-business owner takes the reporter to task, pointing out that CNN failed to show signs such as "Republican's Suck Too. End the Fed."

The reporter keeps trying to pigeonhole the woman as part of a group, and finally the woman explains that both the Democrats and Republicans are to blame for all our ills and that they "all need to go." Too bad that didn't make it to CNN's broadcast. You can watch the clip that CNN had YouTube pull and the off-camera fun below here.

In Minnesota, the blogger "The Grace Kelly" posted this account on the decidedly liberal Daily Kos Web site: "At a protest, normally, one sees the very hardcore support. However, what I saw was widespread disillusionment. In the video, notice how people are blaming politicians on both sides. Note that even though we now have President Obama, there is still acknowledgment that the problems started in the President Bush administration. So unlike other reports, talking to people at the Minnesota tax tea party gave me hope that these people value 'fiscal responsibility' and are actually open to persuasion." You can watch her insightful interviews about fair tax and the Federal Reserve at our Web site.

The SHA (Swine Human Avian) Flu Virus

The front page of the Wall Street Journal on Monday read, "The federal government is releasing 12.5 million courses of its emergency stockpile of potentially effective antiviral drugs to states that need them." Since when does anyone "need" something that is "potentially effective," especially when the risks of the drugs may be higher than the virus? To the WSJ's credit, they refrained from referring to this latest scare as "swine flu," but they did give us unique insight into what the future may hold for you at your airport. Pictured was "Scanning for feverish passengers at an airport in South Korea," showing bio-scans of passengers by their body-heat index. One can imagine the abuse and fear such a vetting process could engender. But don't take my word for it; listen to Dr. Ron Paul, an 11-term congressman from Texas and an MD. He and a Georgia congressmen, Larry McDonald (also an MD), were the only two "no" votes back in 1976 when the government ramped up a similar "swine flu" pandemic scare and mass-vaccinated thousands of people, including military, by force, resulting in 25 deaths and hundreds becoming sick ... from the cure no less. You can watch Paul question why Homeland Security is getting involved in medicine at our Web site.

As always, your feedback about what you read in these pages and online is encouraged. Write us at letters@rcreader.com.

Put Down the Remote, Pick Up the Mouse Videos from April 29 Commentary
http://www.rcreader.com/commentary/put-down-the-remote/

Over 500 people gathered from Noon to 2pm in downtown Davenport, IA as part of the nationwide
protests against excessive government spending and what many perceive as threats to citizens'
rights as guaranteed by the US Constitution. This video includes seven interviews with protest attendees
including an 11 year old whose sign read, "Even an 11 year old knows Obama is wrong." When asked
what Obama was wrong about, the young person replied that taking money from those that work
and giving it to those that do not work.

One protester carrying a sign that read "Democrats are spending our grandchildren's future."
He is asked what he would say to critics that point out the Republicans spend just as wildly when
they were the majority. One protester claims that Obama is a puppet of the Bildeberg Group,
Trilateral Commission and Council on Foreign Relations, and that Americans who
voted for him have been "bamboozled."

 

 

Put Down the Remote, Pick Up the Mouse Videos from April 29 Commentary
http://www.rcreader.com/commentary/put-down-the-remote/

 

Deadline for New Iowa Urban Neighborhood District Designation Brings Focus to the Campus to Campus Plan in Central Davenport

The city's news release stated that the Campus to Campus Plan is an "effort to continue the revitalization of the corridor between St. Ambrose University and Palmer College of Chiropractic."

The news release continued: "Representatives from various businesses and institutions within the area have been invited to begin the process by first defining the project area and sharing initial thoughts about how stronger connections can be created. Invited participants include the anchoring institutions of St. Ambrose University and Palmer College of Chiropractic, Davenport Schools, [and] businesses and organizations of the Hilltop area. Wider public participation will be sought once the project's parameters are further defined through the input gathered at this initial meeting."

Several dozen people including business owners, city staff, and aldermen met from 4 to 5:30 p.m. on Thursday, March 5, at J.B. Young Junior High School Cafeteria, 1702 Main Street in Davenport.

What emerged at the meeting was the city's application for a Main Street Iowa designation as an Urban Neighborhood District Program (UNDP) was due in three weeks, and some decisions on project boundaries needed to be made.

The UNDP provides for technical assistance from the state and funding assistance for a full-time project director for three years. The literature provided at the meeting stated that there could be up to four urban neighborhoods accepted into the program in 2009. The program fully adopts the four-point focus of "The Main Street Approach": Organization, Promotion, Design, and Business Improvement.

A paid program director selected by the community is paid for by the Iowa Main Street program, within the Iowa Downtown Resource Center and administered by the Community Development Division of the Iowa Department of Economic Development.

Everyone needs deadlines though, right? And many of these groups have been around for a while; it's time they got coordinated, and this might be the catalyst to make some real progress between three major stakeholders: St. Ambrose, The Hilltop Association, and Palmer College, as well as the several public and private schools within the discussed areas.

The program director would live in the area and help plan and implement the Campus to Campus Plan in conjunction with existing revitalization and beautification entities such as the Edmond Gaines group and the Hilltop Association.

What was at stake were the geographic boundaries of the "Urban Neighborhood." St. Ambrose was the north anchor and Palmer was the southeast anchor, with many schools in between, as well as the Hilltop Association on Harrison Street just north of Central High School.

After breaking everyone up into smaller groups with color-coded maps of the central city, staff were working toward consensus on a geographic area from the stakeholders. The discussion included whether residential neighborhoods were included in these designations. Pam Miner said that it might be necessary to remove residential from these plans, depending on the way the grant is given.

Third Ward Alderman Bill Boom advocated a two-tiered approach, with a contingency for a residential component. The Hilltop Association was identified as a potential source for some matching funding for a full-time project director.

The Main Street application is due April 1. There is a presentation to the state on April 28. Funding announcements will happen between May 18 and 22. The one-sheet issued by the city states that the Next Campus Town Strategy Meeting would be the week of May 25.

Pam Miner, City of Davenport Planning & Economic Development Director
"It's not a pot of money they are going to throw at us. It's technical assistance and more resources as far as help. The community is putting in their efforts either in cash or by donating an office space, computer, or telephone. Those kind of things count. The Edmund Gaines project that is already organized to do some lighting -- that can be somehow be creatively put in there as well."

Matt Flynn, City of Davenport Planning Senior Manager
"When you have organizations in place, there are a multitude of different programs that look [and ask], 'Well, where is the capacity to move forward?' I think it will give the Hilltop an advantage."

Ron Franz, Hilltop Association and Property Owner
"When I sat down, I listened to what was said, and it was strategic gateway and 90,000 vehicles per day. If there's 90,000 vehicles every day over there, I'm going to be excited.

"The next thing I wrote was Urban Main Street designation. To keep focused when I sat down in here, that's what was told to me. So I just want to argue a bit ... we're getting too loud and going to miss our focus if we don't keep to what was told a strategic gateway. I've seen plans for a long time. I'd like to see something happen. A little narrower focus would probably make it happen."

Bruce Berger, Development Senior Manager
"Regardless of the grant, I think, if all of you are in favor of these things, this probably needs to happen anyway. It's a lot easier if you have a staff person, and this thing can bring it together. But I think the Hilltop and each organization here has been saying,'Tthis is the kind of thing we need to be doing to get everyone moving forward in a direction.' Our suggestion would be regardless if the money comes through or not, let's keep this momentum going -- keeping the lines of communication going and discussing the improvements and existing ideas and how we can best get them implemented."

Following up on the soon-to-be completed Older Commercial Corridor
Revitalization Plan, the City of Davenport is launching an effort to continue
the revitalization of the corridor between St. Ambrose University and Palmer
College of Chiropractic.

Representatives from various businesses and institutions within the area
have been invited to begin the process by first defining the project area and
sharing initial thoughts about how stronger connections can be created. 
Invited participants include the anchoring institutions of St. Ambrose
University and Palmer College of Chiropractic, Davenport Schools, businesses
and organizations of the Hilltop area.

The meeting will be held:

Thursday, March 5, 2009 
4:00-5:30 p.m. 
JB Young Junior High School Cafeteria, 
1702 Main Street

Wider public participation will be sought once the project's parameters are
further defined through the input gathered at this initial meeting.

If you have questions, please contact Matt Flynn; Senior Manager-Planning
Division; Community Planning and Economic Development Department;
(563) 326-7743.

Jennifer A. Nahra
Communications Director
326-6151

The Davenport Promise Referendum was defeated by voters 61% to 39% at the polls, Tuesday March 3, 2009.

The Promise program was modeled after the pilot program started in Kalamazoo, MI. Organizers wished to reallcoate 30% of the Local Option Sales Tax (LOST) from the capital improvements fund to a new scholarship fund as an economic incentive for families to move to Davenport. The fund would be used to pay for up to $20K in college tuition for students that lived in Davenport and went to high-school in Davenport 9-12 grades.

The program in Kalamzoo was funded by private donations. The Davenport Promise, as proposed, would have been funded by a portion of the LOST.

Opponents of the Davenport Promise rallied around a new PAC formed by Mark Nelson, called Opt4Better. Opt4Better produced detailed financial analysis refuting the proponents proposed benefits. Opt4Better hosted several news conferences, launched a website www.nomorepromises.com, produced a slide show, recorded presentations, and engaged in a Quad City Times sponsored debate. The over arching theme of Opt4Better's counter campaign was that the proponents over estimated the benefits and underestimated the risks to taxpayers.

The Opt4Better volunteers gathered at downtown Dvenport's Front Street Brewery to watch the election returns. KWQC's Erika Cervantes interviewed Mark Nelson live for the 10 o'clock news cycle.

 

Over one hundred volunteers turned out from 3-8 pm at the QCCA Expo Center in Rock Island, IL Tuesday March 3, 2009 to help prepare sapling oak and pecan trees to be distributed and planted throughout six states this spring.

The effort is part of Living Lands and Waters 1 Million Trees Project started in the fall of 2007, with goal of growing 1 million trees in the next 5 -10 years.

Education Coordinator, Tammy Becker, stated, "The main motivation behind this effort was to plant trees to create a food source for wildlife. Because over the years we've lost a lot of our hardwoods that produce nuts and fruits. Trees also help clean the air we breathe and when planted near water they help reduce erosion and clean the water before it hits the waterway."

These trees were grown from seeds at a LLW nursery in Beardstown, IL and included six varieties of Oak and one Pecan tree.

According to Programs Coordinator Denise Mitten, organizers and volunteers were working on bagging and sorting close to 100,000 trees over two days.
Volunteer efforts continue on Wednesday March 4 from 3 to 8 p.m. and organizers say the advance volunteer call ins for Wednesday's second shift are not as full as they would like.

Volunteers can show up to the QCCA Expo Center at 2621 4th Ave., Rock Island, IL or call 309-236-6279. More info can be found at www.livinglandsandwaters.org

Kirwan Cox and a crew from EyeSteel Films (www.eyesteelfilms.com) visit Hunter's Club in Rock Island, IL. The Canadians were here to film a portion of a documentary they are producing for the Canadian version of History Channel about John Vincent Atanasoff. Atanasoff testified in the seminal 1970's Rand Sperry patent trial over the rights to the fundamental elements of modern computing. Atanasoff, a mathematician professor from Iowa State in Ames testified that he conceived of the four principles of the modern calculator as it was known at the time.

1. Binary arithmetic 1's and 0's rather than decimal arithmetic.

2. Use regenerative memory to store information.

3. Use logic instead of enumeration of numbers.

4. Use vacuum tubes to count.

Using vacuum tubes meant electrons which became resistors.

The invalidation of Sperry IBM's patent claim 30 years after Atanasoff conceived the ideas allowed innovation to prosper and changed the world foerver, says producer and historian Kirwan Cox from Montreal, CA.

His crew filmed a visit from Intel researchist Dr. John Gustafson, who built the replica of the BerryAtanasoff computer. Dr. Gustafson had never been to Hunter's. His first visit to the hallowed ground of where modern age computing concepts were born was captured on film for the documentary.

In this clip Kirwan Cox talks about how Atanasoff came to Rock Island in the winter of 1937, the importance of his stop at Hunter's, and how he feels he has proven Hunter's is the famous "roadhouse" Atanasoff testified he conceived the basics of modern day computers.

Hunter's owner Brad Emmert talks about Paul Fessler who explained the intent of the film makers. Fessler is cited by Cox to have recorded an audio interview with Dr. Atanasoff who shared with him the details of the route he took across the Mississippi River.

The Quad-City Times endorses the Promise program in Sunday's edition. "Put Faith in Davenport's Kids" is the editorial's title. One commenter noted that this endorsement was from the "Staff" and not the "Editorial Board," suggesting dissent between the staff and board.
The Times' all-percieved-growth-at-any-cost/risk-if-it's-taxpayer-funded record is consistent here. They admonish opponents who spent too much time on spreadsheets.  "Astute analysts have poked and prodded Promise to assert it cannot pay for itself. That's a standard we've not applied to other government functions and won't apply to this one." This comment brings into focus the proponents' acceptance that providing for one's college education should be a municipal "government function."

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