Parkland Shooting: About Those “18 school shootings” This Year…

It’s not even close to 18 to be factual. Here’s a break-down of all of them.

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Behind the minimum wage fight, a sweeping failure to enforce the law

from Politico

As Democrats make raising the minimum wage a centerpiece of their 2018 campaigns, and Republicans call for states to handle the issue, both are missing an important problem: Wage laws are poorly enforced, with workers often unable to recover back pay even after the government rules in their favor.

That’s the conclusion of a nine-month investigation by POLITICO, which found that workers are so lightly protected that six states have no investigators to handle minimum-wage violations, while 26 additional states have fewer than 10 investigators. Given the widespread nature of wage theft and the dearth of resources to combat it, most cases go unreported. Thus, an estimated $15 billion in desperately needed income for workers with lowest wages goes instead into the pockets of shady bosses.

But even those workers who are able to brave the system and win — to get states to order their bosses to pay them what they’re owed — confront a further barrier: Fully 41 percent of the wages that employers are ordered to pay back to their workers aren’t recovered, according to a POLITICO survey of 15 states.

That’s partly because, in addition to lacking resources, states lack the tools to go after the landscaping firms, restaurants, cleaning companies and other employers that shed one corporate skin for another, changing names while essentially continuing the same businesses — often to evade orders to pay back their workers…

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Interview Suggests Nikolas Cruz Wasn’t a “Monster” After All (and was about to be rich)

In this video I discuss the Obama administration’s long history of undermining your constitutional protections and explain how “common sense” gun laws are a continuation of that assault on your civil liberties.

I also discuss an interview which recently came out with the couple that had taken in Nikolas Cruz. According to them not only was he not the monster everyone seems to be trying to present him as… but he stood to inherit a lot of money in a short time. He had everything to look forward to.

And again, there is no motive for this latest mass casualty event. Just like all those that came before it.

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Parkland Shooting: Witness Says “3 Shooters” and Indicates They Were Wearing Masks

This young girl says there were three shooters and seems to indicate they were wearing masks.

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New York City limousine driver kills himself in protest over poverty wages

by Sandy English, WSWS

On Monday morning, Douglas Schifter, a career limousine driver, shot and killed himself in a rental car in front of New York City Hall in lower Manhattan. A suicide note explained his act was a protest against the political and corporate establishment for systematically lowering the standard of living of professional drivers.

In a defiant note posted on his Facebook account before his suicide, Schifter observed that he had been working nearly 100-120 consecutive hours a week for the last 14 years, up from 50 hours weekly in 1981 when he started to drive professionally.

“Companies do not care how they abuse us just so the executives get their bonuses,” Schifter wrote. “They have not paid us fair rates for some time now. Due to the huge numbers of cars available with desperate drivers trying to feed their families they squeeze rates to below operating costs and force professionals like me out of business. They count their money and we are driven down into the streets we drive becoming homeless and hungry. I will not be a slave working for chump change. I would rather be dead.”…

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Baltimore Cops Kept Toy Guns to Plant on Their Shooting Victims

by Michael Harriot, from Mint Press

In April 2016, a 13-year-old boy was shot by officers of the Baltimore Police Department. The boy ran when faced with the police, so they gave chase. During the chase, the police spotted the boy holding a gun, and when he turned, they shot the teenager. The youngster wasn’t critically injured, and it seemed like an open-and-shut case of a justifiable use of force.

Now people are wondering.

The Baltimore Police Department is currently in court over one of the biggest scandals in the history of American law enforcement. The corruption case is replete with intrigue as police reveal secrets that sound like something out of an urban-fiction novel or a lost season of The Wire. It has revealed how one of America’s largest cities just happened to be filled with crooked cops, but no one seems to be talking about it outside of Baltimore.

According to the Baltimore Sun, it started when a 19-year-old woman from New Jersey overdosed in 2011 and authorities began tracing the origin of the drugs. It led them to a Baltimore drug crew and the discovery that a Baltimore police officer was involved. By the time they finished investigating, eight members of the elite Gun Trace Task Force had been charged with crimes ranging from racketeering to robbery.

You want robbery? How about the story of the corrupt squad stopping a drug dealer during a traffic stop and robbing him of $6,500, then going to the man’s home without a warrant and taking another $100,000 out of a safe? Sgt. Wayne Jenkins would ask suspected drug dealers, “If you could put together a crew of guys and rob the biggest drug dealer in town, who would it be?”

If you’re interested in police targeting regular citizens, maybe you should read about how the Maurice Ward had a technique of driving fast at groups of people, slamming on the brakes and chasing whoever ran. Perhaps you hear how Jenkins believed that all young men with backpacks were dope boys. Or people who drove Honda Accords with tinted windows.

And then there’s the revelation that the supervisor of the unit instructed officers to carry a toy gun just in case they found themselves “in a jam” and needed to plant one. When one of the officers, Marcus Tayor, was arrested, officials couldn’t figure out why he had a toy gun in his glove compartment.

These revelations aren’t speculation. Six of the eight indicted officers have agreed to cooperate with federal law enforcement agents and are testifying in open court. One of the officers won’t get to testify because he was mysteriously shot in the head with his own weapon the day before he was set to testify

[read more here]

How Amazon’s Giant Glass Spheres Embody the Excess and Exploitation of the New Gilded Age (photos)

by Scott Creighton

One week from tomorrow, Jeff Bezos (arguably the wealthiest human in history) will feature himself prominently in a new commercial aired during the Super Bowl in an effort to promote/sell his home surveillance system called Alexa. Jeff and the Deep State of Big Business would love for you to put one of these listening devices in every room of your home (Walmart is practically giving them away to their income-challenged shoppers), including your children’s berdooms, so every sound and every action can be recorded, analyzed, processed and monetized into The Internet of Things for future use. The fact that Bezos and Amazon received a $600 million contract from the CIA to build and operate a massive storage facility so they can house all the info they steal from your home shouldn’t be a problem for you, right? Nor should congress approving a Defense Department budget that includes a $53 BILLION dollar deal to make Amazon the sole provider (and purchasing agent) of office provisions and other sundry items for the entire Department of Defense.

Techies are beside themselves swooning in anticipation of the opportunity to see their new John Galt in a commercial pushing his home intrusion product himself. Alexa is so damn hip after all, it’s like having your best Starbucks buddy right there with you every day of the week. Only this one always knows what too say… and what NOT to.

screenshot of Lord God King Bezos “acting”

As it turns out, one week prior to his thespian debut, Bezos is rolling out another reveal for the world: his new giant glass balls. And, once again, the techies are swooning:

“Three years ago, Inc.‘s horticulturalist was giving Jeff Bezos a preview of what the company’s three plant-filled spheres—the centerpiece of its $4 billion downtown Seattle office project—would look like on opening day.

One rendering showed the view from a 30-foot-high suspension bridge looking down on a tree. The next showed the same tree as it would look five years later, branches stretching high above the bridge to form a canopy, giving Amazonians the feeling of walking through a rainforest

The online retailer is scheduled to unveil the spheres Monday morning following seven years of planning and construction. The glass orbs were built to let Amazon workers escape from emails, meetings, reports and deadlines to walk along stone paths beside waterfalls, let ferns from South America brush their shoulders and the moist, tropical air fill their lungs.” Spenser Soper

The giant glass spheres are located in Seattle attached to Amazon’s corporate headquarters and the sole purpose of them, aside from being a pompous display of wealth and power, is to give their corporate employees a place to relax during the work day. Well, give them a place to relax and at the same time feel privileged, special, unique and … entitled.

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