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Man Dies In Portland In Shooting, Trump and Mayor Ted Wheeler Argue Who Is Responsible

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Tensions have been elevated lately with many high profile incidents between Trump supporters and those that oppose U.S. President Donald Trump and his followers. Now, there has been another incident, this time in Portland, Oregon with the death of another man and Trump as well as the Mayor of Portland Ted Wheeler are throwing digital punches of their own.

Over the weekend a man was shot and killed in downtown Portland Saturday night, as President Donald Trump supporters clashed with protesters against police, few details have emerged thus far about what took place, New York Post reported.

The Portland police identified Michael Forest Reinoehl, 48, as the suspect who was involved in the death of Aaron Danielson, a “supporter” of the right-wing Patriot Prayer group who was part of a caravan of Trump supporters who flooded the city Saturday, police sources told The Oregonian.

The suspect was identified by a distinctive tattoo on his neck of a “black power” fist — as well as a call from his estranged sister who recognized him in video and photos of the deadly attack, the paper said.

The 36-year-old sister which The Oregonian agreed not to name received a threatening call that woke her at 8 a.m. Sunday warning that “our whole family was in danger unless we turned him over.”

“We reached out to police and confirmed that we recognized Michael in the screenshots” from the shooting, she told the paper.

The man who is apparently a father of two is estranged from most of his family — including his parents — after stealing from them, according to his sister.

“On the one hand, this whole thing surprises the daylights out of us, because we always thought he is a lot of bark, not a lot of bite,” she said. “But he’s also been very impulsive and irrational.”

She condemned the shooting as “not the solution” to the nation’s problems.

“Violence begets violence and hatred begets hatred. This is not the solution. My heart goes out to the victim. It always has, before I even knew my brother was involved.”

Danielson was shot in the chest, police said. They also said that it wasn’t clear whether the killing was politically motivated.

However, the evidence seems to suggest that may be the case. The man who was killed was wearing a hat with the insignia of Patriot Prayer, a far-right group that has clashed with protesters in the past, according to New York Times reporter Mike Baker.

Further, the suspected shooter’s own social media posts seem to indicate that as well. Reinoehl’s Instagram page has regular posts about Black Lives Matter and the protests — which is now inundated with threats and pro-Trump messages in the comments.

“Every Revolution needs people that are willing and ready to fight,” he wrote in June, comparing it to his time in the Army.

“I am 100 % ANTIFA all the way! I am willing to fight for my brothers and sisters!” he said, insisting he would not “run” from violence.

“It will be a war and like all wars there will be casualties,” he wrote, calling protesters and Antifa “my brothers in arms.”

Trump tweeted “Rest In Peace” referencing the man on Twitter.

The police tweeted Saturday that there had been “some instances of violence between demonstrators and counterdemonstrators.”

Justin Dunlap, who witnessed the shooting and captured some of the altercations on his Facebook live stream, said he “didn’t hear much lead up to it.”

“I heard like three seconds of yelling and saw a guy spray bear mace,” Dunlap told CNN. “The victim sprayed mace and launched it right into the other guy.”

However, he is unsure where the shots originated from. “I’ve watched the video 100 times, slow-mo and on my TV, and still don’t know where the shots actually came from,” Dunlap said.

Dunlap said that the victim had earlier used bear mace on the crowd, and someone could be heard on his video shouting that the victim was a “motherf—er who has been pushing people and jumping people the entire time.”

“That guy has been f—king with people the entire time,” he shouted.

Police said it was still too early in the investigation to draw conclusions.

“I ask everyone to give the detectives time to do their important work before drawing conclusions about what took place,” Police Chief Chuck Lovell said in a statement.

President Donald Trump and Portland Mayor Ted Wheeler fought on Twitter and on TV in the wake of the shooting.

“Ted Wheeler, the wacky Radical Left Do Nothing Democrat Mayor of Portland, who has watched great death and destruction of his City during his tenure, thinks this lawless situation should go on forever. Wrong! Portland will never recover with a fool for a Mayor….,” Trump tweeted on Sunday.

Trump on Monday continued his attacks on Portland Mayor Ted Wheeler on Twitter, calling him a “joke of a mayor” following the comments that he was a “fool” on Sunday.

He also, added that, “Portland is a mess, and it has been for many years. If this joke of a mayor doesn’t clean it up, we will go in and do it for them!” Trump tweeted Monday.

Wheeler slammed Trump at the press conference on Sunday, NBC News reported. “Do you seriously wonder, Mr. President, why this is the first time in decades that America has seen this level of violence?” Wheeler said. “It’s you who have created the hate and the division.”

“The tragedy of last night cannot be repeated,” Wheeler said. “It doesn’t matter who you are or what your politics are — we have to all stop the violence.” He added, “I’d appreciate that the president either supports us or he stays the hell out of the way.”

Alex Baldridge is an activist and freelance journalist from the midwestern United States who was inspired to become a writer after watching the development of the Wikileaks story and the persecution of Julian Assange. Alex is especially interested in topics like surveillance, the rise of automation, foreign policy, prison reform, and the legal system.

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Colombian Govt Wants To Legalize Cocaine And Then Sell It

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This article was originally published On Dec 3, 2020

Colombia is one of the most notorious producers of cocaine in the world, despite the fact that the country has gone to great lengths in hopes of diminishing the trade of the drug trade within its borders.

Now, some members of the Columbian government are proposing a new approach. They are calling for the drug to be legalized and for the government to take control of the industry for themselves.

In a new bill first proposed earlier this year, senators Iván Marulanda and Feliciano Valencia call for the Colombian government to take total control of the cocaine industry to bolster public funds and cut violent cartels out of the trade.

In a recent interview with VICE, Marulanda explained that the government would purchase coca at market price from the 200,000 farming families that are believed to be involved in the trade.

The senators argued that it would actually be cheaper for authorities to buy the crop from the farmers than it would for them to destroy their crops. It costs the government roughly $1 billion every year to destroy coca crops, while it would only cost about $680 million to buy it.

The thing is, we have to recover control over the state. We’re losing control of the state to corruption, narcos in politics. They’re in municipalities, in departments and in congress. All the way to the highest echelons of government,” Marulanda explained.

From here, the state would supply cocaine to users and research groups looking to study its use for painkillers, but it would not be sold recreationally. However, cocaine use is already legal in Columbia, after a court ruled that personal consumption was a human right.

Marulanda is not sure if his bill will make an impact, or how long it will take to gain traction, but he is hoping to make it a major election issue in 2022.

‘The first big obstacle is to open up the conversation among public opinion. This has been a giant taboo. Colombians are born and raised under this assumption that drug-trafficking is a war. There’s no information about coca and cocaine. So, with this bill we hope to open the conversation,” he explained.

In recent years, the government has stepped up their military-police-style enforcement of the industry, and yet cocaine production continues to grow in the country.

Coca cultivation reached 212,000 hectares last year, a rise of nearly 2% from 208,000 hectares the year before, according to figures released by the White House in March. Potential pure cocaine production, meanwhile, rose to 951 metric tons, an 8% increase, according to the Associated Press.

“It’s pretty remarkable that they manually eradicated 100,000 hectares last year and didn’t move the needle,” Adam Isacson of the Washington Office on Latin America think tank said earlier this year. “I guess it means replanting has at least kept pace.”

It seems that no matter what the government does, the cocaine keeps on coming, so politicians are willing to try things that may drastic. However, as Marulanda pointed out in his interview with Vice, cutting out the criminal middlemen will reduce the violence seen in the country’s drug war, and also make the drug safer for the people who use it.

UPDATE: Historic win for coca/cocaine regulation Bill in Colombian Senate – 22nd April 2021

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Another Little Black Book That Once Belonged To Epstein With New Names Is Found

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It is well-known that the late pedophile Jeffrey Epstein kept detailed records of all the powerful people that he stayed in contact with. There is a notorious “little black book” that was published by Gawker in 2015, which exposed many of the powerful people in his circle. This book is believed to contain the contacts that he most frequently called around 2004 and 2005. However, a new list of contacts, recently published by The Insider, reveals new names that were friends with Epstein in the 1990s.

The new black book has the names of 349 people, many of whom did not appear in the list that was previously released to the public.

Among the names on the list are Suzanne Ircha, who’s married to Woody Johnson, owner of the New York Jets, famous wall street investor Carl Icahn, supermarket owner John A. Catsimatidis, actress Morgan Fairchild, former New Republic owner Marty Peretz; and Cristina Greeven, the wife of CNN anchor Chris Cuomo.

The new black book was made public through a strange twist of fate. A woman initially found the book in the late 1990s and saved it for many years until she finally sold it on eBay.

Denise Ondayko, the woman who found the book, said she was walking down Fifth Avenue in the mid-’90s when she spotted a black address book on the ground. She said that she didn’t realize it was Epstein’s book at the time, because he was pretty much unknown to the public, but she did realize that it had a lot of famous names and figured that it might be worth something, so she held onto it.

Last year, Ondayko was cleaning out an old storage unit where she was keeping some of her things and she stumbled upon the book. Now that Epstein was all over the news, the information contained in the book was much more obvious to identify.

Ondayko said she reached out to everyone in the media that she could, including John Oliver, Rachel Maddow, and The New York Times, but none of them ever got back to her, so she eventually just put it up for sale on eBay.

The buyer was Chris Helali, an aspiring politician from Vermont. He purchased the book for $425.

Helali also tried reaching out to the media, including journalists that were already reporting on Epstein, but none of them seemed interested. Finally, Nick Bryant, the reporter who wrote the original Gawker black book story forwarded the book to the Insider who decided to publish.

Insider hired Dennis Ryan, a former forensic document examiner and laboratory supervisor for the Nassau County Police Department, to verify the authenticity of the book. Ryan says that the book is definitely from the late 90s, and many of the dates and addresses match up perfectly with Epstein’s properties and known contacts at the time.

The Insider also reached out to dozens of contacts listed in the book who had never previously been publicly associated with Epstein. Fourteen acknowledged on the record that they knew or had met Epstein in the ’90s.

There are over 120 names that appear in both books, including Donald Trump and Bill Clinton. Some of the other names included, Steve Rattner, Beth Anne Bovino, Dominique Bluhdorn, Jill Harth, Ted Field, Robert Nunnery, Stanley Shopkorn, Steve Ruchevsky, Ellen Susman, William and Ann Nitze, Les Gelb, Ron Daniel, Sandy Warner, Cyril Fung, Marius Fortelni, Michael Cutlip. Many of these names aren’t necessarily famous, but they are very powerful people in business and finance.

The address book is now available in a searchable database on the Insider, but it is unfortunately hidden behind a paywall.

 

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Ghislaine Maxwell’s Lawyers Cite Cosby Case As Precedent To Have Her Released From Prison

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Last week, former actor Bill Cosby was released from prison on a technicality, despite the fact that he admitted to drugging and assaulting multiple women, and was accused by many others. After his release, legal experts warned that the ruling could set a dangerous precedent that attorneys in similar cases would use to get their clients released as well.

Now, just a week later, Ghislaine Maxwell’s lawyers are arguing that she should have her case thrown out on the same grounds, according to The Guardian.

Cosby was released because the prosecutor involved initially didn’t press any charges, and claimed that Cosby would not be facing any legal trouble, so when Cosby later confessed, his confession was called into question and no longer admissible in court. The judge also ruled that Cosby had no chance of a fair trial because evidence that was not admissible was so freely available in the media that the jury was unable to make a judgment without considering those facts.

Photo: AP

Maxwell’s case is similar because the first time that Epstein was arrested for human trafficking, he was given a sweetheart deal by Alex Acosta, a friendly prosecutor. The deal helped Epstein avoid any serious jail time, but it also gave him and his associates legal protection from being held accountable for any future crimes.

Obviously, it is not possible to shield a criminal from the consequences of actions that they will take in the future, so Epstein was arrested again many years later after it was discovered that he continued his crimes long after his initial arrest. If Epstein and his friends did have any kind of immunity from that deal, it ended when they continued to commit crimes after the deal was made.

Still, Maxwell’s lawyers are optimistic after Cosby’s recent release.

“The government is trying to renege on its agreement and prosecute Ms Maxwell over 25 years later for the exact same offenses for which she was granted immunity,” Maxwell’s lawyers wrote in a statement to Judge Alison Nathan.

However, the judge has previously ruled that the deal did not apply to the current case.

In an opinion piece for the New York Daily News, Maxwell’s attorney David Oscar Markus wrote that releasing Bill Cosby from prison was the right decision, and that Ghislaine Maxwell should be released as well. Markus argued that prosecutors should have to keep the promises that they make to suspects, because people will sometimes incriminate themselves if they think they have immunity.

However, many times prosecutors are corrupt and make promises that are against the best interests of the public, as we saw in Jeffrey Epstein’s first “sweetheart deal” with Alex Acosta while he was district attorney in Southern, Florida. Prosecutors are lawyers, they aren’t the judge and jury, and they shouldn’t hold this much power in a case this serious.

Judge Alison Nathan has not yet responded to the recent request, but she did condemn the recent opinion piece that was published by her lawyers in the New York Daily News earlier this week.

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