Sunday, December 13, 2009

Drug money saved banks in global crisis, claims UN advisor

Very interesting read.  Click at the bottom and read the whole article from England.

Drugs money worth billions of dollars kept the financial system afloat at the height of the global crisis, the United Nations' drugs and crime tsar has told the Observer.

Click on the following:  Drug money saved banks in global crisis, claims UN advisor | World news | The Observer

Blog Count for the last 30 days: 1300 visits; 899 separate visitors.

The major increase was due to the NDK explosion,  There were 173 visits on Monday December 7, 2009, the date of the blast.
Since September 1, 2009:  2325 visits, 1321 separate visitors
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Quinn suspends early prisoner release program - Chicago Breaking News

 ... Governor, Future GovernorGov. Pat Quinn has suspended a program that allowed hundreds of inmates to be released early by earning credit for good behavior

Click on the following for this timely update:  Quinn suspends early prisoner release program - Chicago Breaking News

Video poker? Not here.—Chicago Tribune Editorial

If your county or community isn't on the first list, get cracking. Call your local council members, your county board solons, anybody and everybody who can get your jurisdiction to opt out, too. The list of opt-out local governments now stands at 50, according to the Illinois Gaming Board.

recognize video gambling for just what it is: a fine way to pack low-rent bars and then separate moderate-income people from what limited resources their families still have.

These are the 50 governments the Gaming Board says have banned video gambling:
Cook County, DuPage County, Kane County, Lake County, Addison, Batavia, Beach Park, Burbank, Burr Ridge, Bloomingdale, Buffalo Grove, Carbondale, Carol Stream, Country Club Hills, Darien, East Dundee, Elburn, Elmhurst, Evanston, Glen Ellyn, Glenview, Hanover Park, Hawthorn Woods, Highland Park, Itasca, Kildeer, La Grange, Lake Bluff, Lake Forest, Libertyville, Lincolnwood, Lisle, Mettawa, Mount Prospect, Naperville, Northbrook, Oak Park, Oakbrook Terrace, Orland Park, Palos Heights, Rochester, Rosemont, Schiller Park, South Holland, Villa Park, Wayne, West Chicago, Wheaton, Wilmette, Winfield

The Gaming Board says these 14 governments are considering bans:
Kendall County, McHenry County, Peoria County, Will County, Arlington Heights, Campton Hills, Deerfield, Elgin, Gurnee, Lindenhurst, Oswego, Park Ridge, West Dundee, Winnetka.

Click on the following to read the entire editorial:  Video poker? Not here. -- chicagotribune.com

Metra engine flap leads railroad to seek locomotive bids

Metra should open up the bidding process to producers of both types of locomotives, allowing it to make the best choice for taxpayers….so said a]bipartisan letter … signed by U.S. Reps. Mark Kirk, R-Highland Park; Bobby Rush, D-Chicago; Donald Manzullo, R-Rockford; Danny Davis, D-Chicago; Bill Foster, D-Geneva; Debbie Halvorson, D-Crete, and Judy Biggert, R-Hinsdale.

Now, Metra plans to seek bids from all locomotive manufacturers

according to a computer simulation of a Chicago-Aurora run, Electro-Motive Diesel found that its locomotives are 8% to 14% more fuel efficient than the genset alternative, said a spokesman for Rep. Lipinski.

Metra engine flap leads railroad to seek locomotive bids | Crain's Chicago Business

Thomson Prison Memo Leaked Online

 ... detainees at state prisonThe draft of a federal memo leaked online says, "the Attorney General shall as expeditiously as possible acquire and activate the Thomson Correctional Center as a United States penitentiary." And "the Secretary of Defense shall relocate detainees currently held at the Guantanamo Detention Facility to the Thomson Correctional Center.

Click on the following for more details:  Thomson Prison Memo Leaked Online

Examine Fatal Explosion at NDK America Inc. near Rockford, Illinois

CSB Posting of their investigation. U.S. Chemical Safety Board is authorized by the Clean Air Act Amendments of 1990 and became operational in January 1998.investigative function be completely independent of the rulemaking, inspection, and enforcement authorities of EPA and OSHA. Congress recognized that Board investigations would identify chemical hazards that were not addressed by those agencies.

Washington, DC, December 8, 2009 – The U.S. Chemical Safety Board is deploying an investigation team to the site of an explosion that occurred Monday afternoon at the NDK America Inc. plant, a manufacturer of quartz crystals in Belvidere, Illinois, approximately 60 miles northwest of Chicago. 

Examine Fatal Explosion at NDK America Inc. near Rockford, Illinois

Joseph Lieberman Says He Can’t Support Current Health Bill - NYTimes.com

 ... Joseph Hoffmann - Open Salonon Sunday, Mr. Lieberman told the Senate majority leader, Harry Reid, to scrap the idea of expanding Medicare and to abandon the idea of any new government insurance plan, or lose his vote.

Click on the following for more details:   Joseph Lieberman Says He Can’t Support Current Health Bill - NYTimes.com

St. Charles weighs budget cuts, new taxes to offset projected deficit

 St. Charles the "Pride of the Fox," a unique place to live, work, and visitWhen St. Charles won a wage freeze concession from its union and nonunion employees, city officials thought they would safely finish the 2009-10 budget year in the black. But a continuing economic slump has both the current and future budget turning red and the city council considering new taxes

excluding property tax income, the other top revenue categories as a group are bringing in about 12.5 percent less than last year.

two new taxes - on amusements and alcohol

Click on the following for more details:  Daily Herald | St. Charles weighs budget cuts, new taxes to offset projected deficit

Ill. prisons shave terms, secretly release inmates

IDOC Serving Justice StarRepeat drunk drivers, drug users and even people convicted of battery and weapons violations are serving less than three weeks' total time behind bars under a secret change in policy by Illinois Gov. Pat Quinn's prison system,

The new policy might save money, but law enforcement officials say it also removes the deterrent of a stint in state prison and undermines judges and juries.

943 inmates were affected by the policy change in October and November,

Click on the following for more details:  Ill. prisons shave terms, secretly release inmates :: CHICAGO SUN-TIMES :: Chicago Crime

Guantanamo Bay detainees headed for 'super-max' jail in Illinois

Always go to Australia for your regional news.  This is from an Australian newspaper.

The White House memo, dated last Thursday and first reported by a conservative website called biggovernment.com, directs Defence Secretary Robert Gates to transfer Gitmo detainees to the Thomson prison "as expeditiously as possible".

It also says Attorney-General Eric Holder should "as expeditiously as possible acquire and activate" the Thomson jail as a US federal prison, and provide the Defence Department with a sufficient portion of the prison to house relocated Guantanamo Bay detainees

White House, although confirming the internal memo dated last Thursday was accurate, has sought to play down its significance.

Click on the following for more details:  Guantanamo Bay detainees headed for 'super-max' jail in Illinois | The Australian