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Sex, drugs, and racist policing in Rutland, Vermont


Sex, drugs, and racist policing in Rutland, Vt.

By Farah Stockman Globe Staff August 26, 2015

...Thanks to a lawsuit filed in Rutland, Vt., the world is about to get a rare, behind-the-dashcam look at police culture in a rural Vermont town. It ain’t pretty.

To be sure, police in Rutland have a tough job. The once-idyllic town has battled the scourge of heroin for years. New York City drug dealers flock there to sell their wares at a higher profit.

But there’s a right way and a wrong way to tackle this problem. Rutland chose the wrong way: Two white police officers — Sergeant John Johnson and Officer Earl Post — began strip-searching black men coming off the Amtrak train.

They manufactured probable cause, claiming they’d gotten a tip from a “confidential informant,” according to the lawsuit, filed by Andy Todd, who served for years as the only black officer on Rutland’s force.

Posted by friendly_iconoclast | Sun Aug 30, 2015, 02:32 PM (4 replies)

The Google Search That Made the CIA Spy on the US Senate


The Google Search That Made the CIA Spy on the US Senate
By Jason Leopold
August 12, 2015 | 12:15 pm

John Brennan was about to say he was sorry.

On July 28, 2014, the CIA director wrote a letter to senators Dianne Feinstein and Saxby Chambliss — the chairwoman of the Senate Intelligence Committee (SSCI) and the panel's ranking Republican, respectively. In it, he admitted that the CIA's penetration of the computer network used by committee staffers reviewing the agency's torture program — a breach for which Feinstein and Chambliss had long demanded accountability — was improper and violated agreements the Intelligence Committee had made with the CIA.

The letter was notable in part because Brennan initially denied the January 2014 search of the Senate's computer network even took place. And later, when it became clear that it had — and that he had known of it while publicly denying that it happened — he refused to acknowledge that it was wrong. For months, Feinstein and other committee members were clamoring for a written apology to make part of the official record.

Brennan's mea culpa was prompted by a memo he'd received 10 days earlier from CIA Inspector General David Buckley. After the Office of the Inspector General (OIG) was tasked with looking into the intrusion, it found that the CIA employees who broke into the Senate's computer network in hopes of tracking down CIA documents the Senate wasn't allowed to see (according to the agency) may have broken federal laws.

"I recently received a briefing on the [OIG's] findings, and want to inform you that the investigation found support for your concern that CIA staff had improperly accessed the [Intelligence Committee] shared drive on the RDINet [an acronym for rendition, detention, and interrogation] when conducting a limited search for CIA privileged documents," Brennan wrote. "In particular, the [OIG] judged that Agency officers' access to the… shared drive was inconsistent with the common understanding reached in 2009 between the Committee and the Agency regarding access to RDINet. Consequently, I apologize for the actions of CIA officers…. I am committed to correcting the shortcomings that this report has revealed."...



Very long, but well worth reading. Turns out, the Panetta Report leaking
was due to the CIA's IT contractor fucking up, not the Senate staffers hacking into
the CIA's database. Also, the CIA asked Vice not to release the letter that the CIA
had given them ('by mistake', is the claim) but Vice said no, and so you see it
Posted by friendly_iconoclast | Wed Aug 12, 2015, 11:37 PM (3 replies)

Track construction begins on New Haven-Springfield rail line


HARTFORD, Conn. —Construction of a second track for the expanded rail line from New Haven to Springfield, Massachusetts, began Monday, and commuters will be bused along the route for the next year.

The project will boost north-south rail transportation from six daily round-trip trains to 17 a day south of Hartford and 12 north of Hartford. About $435 million is available, said John Bernick, assistant rail administrator at the Connecticut Department of Transportation. Of that amount, $191 million is from Washington, D.C., and the remainder is state funding, he said.

The increased number of trains is intended not only to boost economic development in central Connecticut. It's also part of a broader web of rail line expansions between Springfield and Boston and north to Vermont and Montreal

"It puts Hartford right in the middle of this great rail infrastructure," Bernick said. "It's huge. When you discuss it with businesses, their eyes really light up. It all starts right now with this critical track bed."
Posted by friendly_iconoclast | Wed Aug 5, 2015, 12:07 PM (0 replies)
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