Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Film Permit and Other Phony Demands on Bloggers and Documentary Film Makers

Politicians learned decades ago that they could tax and regulate certain filmmakers.  The problem is that too many bureaucrats and cops don’t know or understand the law. 
The First Amendment absolutely protects anyone involved with news or opinion publishing and broadcasting.   That of course includes those publishing and posting various forms of media on the web.  They cannot regulate home video projects not intended for profit either.
The permit laws can only apply to commercial projects such as entertainment films or commercials. 
If you’re gathering news video or B-roll and some officious jerk demands to see your film permit you can tell him it’s at the very top of the Bill of Rights.  If he still has questions tell him to visit his local library to read a copy.  Of course you should tell him your gathering news material but you need not tell him anything about the news story your working on.
They may even try to bully you to obtain a permit and liability insurance but there is no truth to that unless of course you’re not doing news.  Stand tough and be sure to shoot video of any official jerks that you can use in court should a bogus arrest is attempted or made. 
The rub here is you cannot gather news with the interruption by ignorant public officials.  The ACLU is more than happy to represent you especially if you have proof of the suppression of your rights on video.
Never ever yield to demands that you delete video or surrender media cards or tape.  If you gather video of a crime the cops and prosecutors have a right to use legal process to obtain a copy your video.  
Nobody has the right to force you to turn off your newsgathering camera.  If they don’t want to be seen they can either avoid you or put bags over their heads.  Nobody has the right to assault you or grab your property.  Should they do that it is a crime in every jurisdiction.
You do need to be aware that owners of private property such as malls can force you to leave their premises.  They have authority under trespassing laws.  Government property that is open to the public can’t prevent you from newsgathering.   The exception is in courthouses and that can only become a matter of Contempt of Court, not trespassing.
In most places such as shopping malls it's best if you can slip in shoot the video before you're discovered.  They can only take action against you after you fail or refuse to leave their property.  Some malls will give you permission for personal video or certain other reasons.  Don’t ask for permission until they have approached you. Again a film permit is just not required for newsgathering. 

Carice van Houten at Sunday Night’s Heineken Music Hall Concert in Amsterdam

Amsterdam, NL—Okay, I’m obsessed!  I love the arts, theater and of course, music.   There are those artists that entertain us all.   God given talent and the ability to face the world and perform seems to be handed to a chosen few.  Carice van Houten is at the very top of my list of terrific performers.
Yes, people are born with talent but without hard work and serious dedication it may all be wasted.  Carice has incredible acting chops, best described by film director Paul Verhoeven.   Vehoeven said, “Carice is beautiful like Sharon Stone (Basic Instinct), but she can act!”  This was not really a slight to Stone’s ability but his recognition that Carice has a rare and special magic.   I certainly don’t discount Verhoeven’s ability to get all that an actor can possibly give in a performance.
To give a great performance an actor must forget the cameras, audience and simply put aside their ego.  They must actually live their part and avoid “performing”.  The great actors never imitate their characters but rather become them without losing their own voice and skin. 
Carice got my undivided attention in the Paul Verhoeven film, Black Book.  Carice was unquestionably the lead actor followed by a wonderful ensemble cast.  Unfortunately it’s all too rare when a film script offers a woman such a strong and commanding lead. 
Black Book was a fine example that a woman can be an action hero without killing anyone or losing her dignity or felinity.   Few actresses could have even come close to Carice’s great performance.
In this World War Two drama,  Carice spoke three languages, swam, danced and sang.  The role was as demanding as any you will ever see.  Unfortunately the film was never adequately distributed in the U.S.  The film can easily be obtained in Blu-Ray from Netflix or Amazon.com.  Black Book is a fabulous showcase for Carice’s amazing talents.
Carice just released her new CD called; See You On The Ice. It’s entirely in English There are some really well written songs I know most people will enjoy and Carice has a hit on her hands. Of Course you can sample and buy this music from iTunes and wherever music is sold today.
Carice gave a concert at the Heineken Music Hall in Amsterdam.  It was disappointing for me that I was unable to attend, however thankfully here are three videos attached below from the concert. 
I don’t know just where Carice’s career is going but we need to see much more of her in the United States.  Her impeccable English should not bar her from any role.   She’s got a top American agent who must get busy or risk losing Carice to another.   Carice belongs in big budget feature films rather than television. 
Carice has reportedly told tabloid publications she wants to do more music.  If you’ve not see Black Book, do so.  I have attached the trailer at the bottom after the others.
Sit back and enjoy the videos.  

Still I dream of It.

Particle of Light


Particle of Light Official Video
The Black Book Film Trailer

Monday, November 26, 2012

Growing Pains Has Put a Two and a Half Men Star at Odds With His Show

Los Angeles, CA—I have to admit it I enjoy watching the original Two and a Half Men Show a lot.  It is filled with references to Charlie Sheen’s lust for sex, drugs, rock and roll.  There is no sexual subject off limits in this masterpiece of satire.  Is this really an icon of our moral decay?  I don’t think so.  Unless of course you take the story’s line too seriously.
To understand the world we live in these racy subjects should not be off limits but perhaps displayed as an example of the irreverence, excess and self-destruction.  The show’s characters are all flawed and dysfunctional.  This is comedy and all comedy is born of pain.  We laugh as these fictional people are put through their paces. 
We can’t take this show seriously because it’s fiction and fantasy. It’s a vehicle for us to put aside our own misfortunes or challenges and laugh at the show’s humor.
From time to time I’d considered the lad Angus T. Jones who plays Jake a little young for the show's content. .  He got his sex education at breakneck speed on this show.  Along the way the young Jones lad has been financially set for life and has a bright future.  Just what he wants to do with it will be up to him but I doubt that he’s been ruined by the show.  
Jones has recently suggested that the viewers of the show should discontinue watching.  He’s taken exception to the show’s moral compass or rather the lack of one.  He’s apparently become influenced by religion and feels that the show helps foster and promote bad behavior. 
I say it’s a sad day when art dictates to anyone how life should be lived.   I think we all understand that our basic humanity and hearts tell us right from wrong.  We all know these fictional characters are somewhat extreme and too often morally bankrupt.  I just don’t view this show as a behavioral influence.  Maybe I’m giving too much credence to my fellow human beings.
As for the young super-star, Jones, and this participation in this somewhat decadent, crude and rude show he is now living on Easy Street.  He can get formal education that others can only dream about while he lives in safe neighborhoods and commutes in a very reliable automobile.   He will be able to marry and raise his own children without most of the desperate challenges most Americans have to deal with.
We cannot dismiss that Jones has had to work very hard keeping up with difficult shooting schedules and promotional efforts.  This of course while completing schoolwork for his normal development.
Is young Jones suddenly ungrateful?  I don’t see that at all.  He’s just trying like all of us to find his own way to live a productive and meaningful life.  If anything I believe the show has made him more aware of how he should, live, love and stay healthy.
Here is young Jones’s take on the show that made him rich well before he completed puberty.  I think this lad will figure it all out and know what’s right for him.

Supreme Court: Citizens Recording their Contacts With Police Officers is Constitutionally Protected Activity

Cook County State's Attorney Anita Alvarez's efforts to protect tyranny were defeated in the US Supreme Court.
Washington, DC—The State of Illinois had a so-called Anti-Eavesdropping Law.  It barred the recording of any conversations without the consent of all parties.  A violation of this law was a serious felony that could put violators in prison for up to 15 years.  Today, tyranny was defeated because that law is dead.  Perhaps now, The Truth Will Set You Free!
The intent of the law was in itself disingenuous or downright nefarious.  As we all know, the truth can be very dangerous.  Illinois politicians made sure that that the truth could never be used against them.  This was their response to the burgeoning use of tape recorders in the 1950s.  Politicians bribery and extortion activities were being exposed by the devices and the law would bar the use of the recordings as evidence against them.   They more properly could have called their creation, The Public Official Bribery Protection Act.
The law could not be limited to protect public officials and covered all conversations.  This law also prevented news organizations from running hidden camera stings where voices were also recorded.  The law did nothing to protect privacy but went a long way to protect criminals.   
People who were ignorant of the law were the ones usually arrested for this notorious crime.  Often they were people that were simply trying to document crimes being committed against them.  There were also people arrested that were simply trying to authenticate conversations where promises or representations in case the people later tried to lie about what was said.
The ACLU sought to prevent and or document the abuse of citizens by police.  In some cases the ACLU actually provided people with cheap video cameras to record their encounters with police.  The ACLU asked the U.S. District court to invalidate the law.  That matter has now been fully litigated and it is the law of the land throughout America.  Citizens can record their encounters with police without fear of arrest.
For my visitors that are cops remember that allows you to take a hidden recording device into internal affairs or situations where they are investigating you.  
Here is the decision that the Supreme Court has let stand:

Saturday, November 24, 2012

Please, Help Stop This TSA Injustice—You Can Make a Call and Demand Simple Fairness.

Sheila Schultz was unable to smile for this  police Booking Photo

Chicago, IL—Friday morning seemed like it was just another beginning of a long flight for Sheila Schultz, 65.  You see Schultz is a 44 year-veteran flight attendant for American Airlines and on this day she was headed for Shanghai, China. 
At O'Hare International Airport Schultz placed her carryon bag on a TSA inspection conveyer belt as she always does since privacy invasion by government became a way of life in this nation.  Now any fool would know that the TSA wienies are going to x-ray her bag for anything resembling a weapon.  Smuggling a weapon in a carryon bag simply would not work.
When Schultz’s bag was being screened, as was fully expected, unfortunately a handgun was discovered.  Without much fanfare the TSA wienies who have no police training or arrest powers took control over the bag and called the police.
The “Zero Tolerance” policy kicked into high gear.  Schultz was quickly placed in handcuffs and transported for booking and an overnight stay in the lockup.  She was humiliated with sexually intrusive strip searches and then dragged before a judge the next day.
Did she commit a crime?  On it’s face it’s very obvious that in the worst case scenario Schultz, forgot that she left her gun in the bag.  Missing was a motive or agenda and most importantly intent to cause harm or break the law.   This case however was still different.  The bag Schultz used, was also shared by her husband who apparently left the small .22 gun inside after a trip to Michigan.
In case you were wondering the Schultz couple live in suburban Palatine, Illinois.  There are no gun possession bans there and transporting the gun to Michigan would not violate any laws.   You also need to know that Schultz has never before in her entire life been arrested.  She’s not a member of a street gang or terror group.  She’s been a contributing and taxpaying member of society throughout her life.  Also she’s lived in the same home for 40 years.
Anita Alvarez is the Cook County State’s Attorney.  Alvarez personally hates the right we all are supposed to enjoy to keep and bear arms.  Alvarez lives to prosecute anyone she can for violation of the un-Constitutional gun laws of Illinois.  She’s proven herself to be heartless, cruel and unreasonable in gun cases.
I smell a deal in the works to make the Schultz woman plead guilty for a period of supervision and after three years a reversal of the conviction.  They will also seek to impose a fine.  That deal may also prematurely end Schultz’s airline career.  They will also demand that her husband’s gun be confiscated and destroyed.  Schultz’s  lawyer David Studenroth, will see this as the only way out and advise Schultz to take that crappy plea agreement.
Schultz will have to commute back and forth for a few months to spend countless hours in a courtroom far from her home in Palatine.  The lawyer’s meter will be ticking away depleting Schultz’s retirement fund.
If ever there was on this is a case where justice demands they simply let the woman go, return her husband’s gun and wish this woman well this was it.  Will they do the right thing here? Not without a lot of public pressure.  Common sense never seems to prevail in Cook County’s criminal justice system. 
Perhaps it’s time to pass this around to every sane and sober person you know to call Anita Alvarez at 773-674-7494.   Simply demand that Alvarez do the right thing and dismiss the charges so this woman can resume her life in peace.  I will make a call Monday Morning when the office is open for business, please do the same. 

Thursday, November 22, 2012

The TSA is a Terrorist Organization that Endangers Every American.

Phoenix, AZ—As Americans travel for family get-togethers much more than their dignity, privacy and liberty are at stake. 
The abusive TSA has cost the airlines millions of lost passengers and staggering revenue.  Particularly on trips of less that 800 miles people will drive just to avoid being insulted, groped and otherwise victimized by the TSA workers.
Highway deaths because of millions of additional cars clogging our highways have skyrocketed.  It has been estimated that at least 500 additional deaths happen now every year.  That does not count the thousands who are only maimed or the massive property damage.
The TSA has hired every unskilled, unemployable or mentally defective person they could.  They have placed these pathetic souls into police costumes and let them run wild groping our genitals.  They for the most part TSA workers escape accountability for their rudeness and endless missteps.
We can either stop the TSA or allow this cancer to spread.  Do we really need to grope traveling Americans?  Why do we still allow people with passports from our enemy nations to fly on our planes?  Why haven’t we trained and required every pilot to fly armed?  Confiscating expensive cosmetics from women or grandma’s cranberry sauce does not make us safer.  
The TSA has not stopped a single terrorist event in its entire history.  Ordinary passengers that realized that their lives depend on self-reliance are the ones that have stopped those attempted terrorist incidents.  We all learned on 9/11 that calling 911 at 30,000 feet and getting help is impossible! 
We want to be safe but the illusion of security and the showmanship of the TSA has become an un-Constitutional bad joke.   
We must defund and eliminate the TSA.  We do need security and that should be provided by qualified and trained cops who can profile passengers for behavior signs throughout the airports.
The TSA loves to brag about discovering forearms in forgetful passenger’s carry-on bags.  The TSA calls the cops and these people are forced to pay thousands for their criminal defense costs and fines. These people were never a threat to anyone.  There has never been an incident where intent to commit any kind of a firearm assault or terrorism by passenger was discovered.
The financial devastation to our economy along with the cost in human lives along with loss of privacy and basic dignity cannot be measured.  We now fear the TSA more than foreign terrorists. 

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Happy Thanksgiving!

I know millions of Americans have taken to the road this holiday weekend to escape TSA tyranny. That means we must all drive safely so we may enjoy this great day with our families and friends.
I’d like to wish all my friends and visitors a very Happy Thanksgiving with lots of those wonderful calories!

Monday, November 19, 2012

Chicago’s Magnificant Mile is Under Siege and Very Dangerous. Stay Away!

Jimmy Harris (Chicago Police Booking Photo)
Chicago, IL—The Windy City is under siege.  Tourists, residents and workers are constantly under attack by violent predators.  The victims are almost exclusively White.  The predators are exclusively African-American.  Chicago has been a breeding ground for a bankrupt, dangerous and violent culture that has devoured African-Americans.
Let me make myself clear.  This is not about genetic deficiencies or the color of skin.  This is about a culture that was adopted, nurtured and encouraged over many generations.   This was and is simply just another diabolical and insidious form genocide designed to destroy the Black race.
Chicago’s politicians here have created this culture by encouraging African Americans to remain ignorant, totally dependent and completely void of any family values.  
Through entitlements, tolerance of violence, generally bad behavior and acceptance of educational failure Chicago has created this cultural monster.  It’s frightening and incredibly expensive for businesses and taxpayers.  This phenomenon must be dealt with but instead it’s ignored.
In yet another stunning example this state of affairs a peaceful family gathered to enjoy the Festival of Lights Celebration and quiet dinner inside the Westin Hotel on Michigan Avenue. 
The horror began inside the restroom where a recently paroled career criminal 56 year-old, Jimmy Harris attacked stabbing and slashing his victim, an Oakbrook, IL physician.    The bloody victim tried to flee from Harris and the struggle continued outside of the bathroom.  A bartender from the restaurant tried to intervene but was also was stabbed by Harris. 
Harris was eventually located and arrested by police who charged him with attempted first-degree murder, aggravated battery with intent to do great bodily harm and aggravated unlawful restraint.
The victims were transported to the hospital for some lifesaving care and will definitely receive huge medical bills very soon.  Thankfully they survived.
Chicago’s gun bans to not protect the innocent by keeping them disarmed and defenseless.  Chicagoans have the right to keep and bear arms only on paper because the local politicians have hijacked the Bill of Rights.  
Anyone carrying a firearm for needed protection from criminals such as Harris are simply arrested, unmercifully punished and given a criminal record for the rest of their lives.   They also lose their business licenses and future employment opportunities because of the public record.
Chicago’s politicians have squandered billions on wasteful programs designed only to enrich their campaign contributions.  They have let the Chicago Police Department become underfunded, under-armed, ineffective and largely irrelevant.   
I have to beg the question, how can Chicago thrive under it’s current politicians?  Chicago’s government has taxed businesses far beyond extortionate levels. They have made safe travel into the city impossible and parking insanely expensive.  The Miracle Mile is all but on life support.
The City of Chicago refuses to protect its citizens and visitors and then refuses to let them protect themselves.  Chicago can become a ghost town like Detroit or simply get smart. 
As for those law-abiding people still living in Chicago they need to place their safety far above those un-Constitutional gun bans.  They need to get training and then carry firearms on their person so they can protect themselves and families.   They also need to leave the scenes of any shootings for their own safety and NOT talk to or cooperate with police. 
There is no law requiring the reporting of a shooting like we have for automobile accidents.  Americans have an absolute right to remain silent and that silence cannot be used against them in court.  Juries can’t be told you did not report the shooting or talk with police.
The rank and file cops have to simply ignore enforcement of the gun bans and avoid locating or arresting anyone that has used, or more commonly threatened deadly force in self-defense.
Chicago’s politicians have gone the wrong direction for decades and will never change their ways.  The citizens however must stand up to Tyranny or be swallowed by it. 

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Oakland, CA Savages Have Targeted TV News Crews in Violent Robberies

Oakland, CA—TV news crews here are making news themselves, as victims of stunning and violent crimes.  Additionally tens of thousands of dollars with of equipment is gone.
Recently in probably what’s become the most hostile African-American enclave in America the local savages have brazenly attacked and terrorized TV news crews even during live broadcasts.   The thugs have taken, cameras, broadcast equipment, cell phones, laptops and cash from reporters and photographers at gunpoint.
One such armed robbery of a TV news crew happened in broad daylight right in front of a public school!  Now it’s being reported that some Bay videographers are simply refusing to do stories in Oakland because they are in fear for their lives. 
I suspect this incredibly violent trend will soon take root in every major city.  This dangerous craze will eventually end in murders. 
Nobody in the mainstream media will dare report the truth about the African-American Culture of Violence that has plagued this nation in recent years.  They will continue to pretend that racial overtones are somehow not involved.   
Even in cities where concealed weapons are totally legal the Liberal media members and news directors would go catatonic or worse at the thought of any reporters using a firearm to successfully defend their own lives.  
These days with declining viewership TV news organizations can barely pay their employees a living wage anymore.  Adding armed security or off duty cops to news crews would all but bankrupt these businesses.  Knowing news directors as I do they will try to provide the thugs with additional victims by using only unarmed security guards.
The use of live remote broadcasts or even routine electronic news gathering may end in African-American neighborhoods, as we once knew it.  
When you think about it the news stories in these neighborhoods particularly at night nearly exclusively involve similar despicable and violent crimes. 

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Update On the Debra Milke Death Penalty Case

Phoenix, AZ—I’ve been getting a lot of questions about this sad case and it is time for an update.  There is so much more to this case than people seem to remember.  On December 3, 1989 Roger Mark Scott confessed to kidnapping four year-old Christophe Milke and taking him out to a Northwest side desert wash with his boyhood friend James Lynn Styers.  The boy was then shot three times in the back of his head and left in a fetal position.
To this day both Styers and Scott have accused each other of actually shooting the boy.   Their tape-recorded confessions and later trial testimony made it clear that they alone were the ones that carried out this monstrous and shocking crime.  
Their appeals have hit all but the court of last resort, the United States Supreme Court.  The more liberal 9th Circuit Court of Appeals in San Francisco has already rejected their appeals.  Getting help from the more Conservative Supreme Court is just not a good bet.  Sometime before the summer recess Supreme Court may simply refuse to hear either man’s case.  That would likely end in both of their executions before the summer is out.
Debra Milke was convicted on the claim of a cop, Armando Saldate that she confessed to him that she wanted her son dead and “authorized” the killing.   The cop made sure there was no tape recorders or witnesses to his interview with Milke. 
It was just hours later that I interviewed Milke in the receiving area of the Madison Street Jail with a hidden tape recorder.  Milke adamantly and somewhat angrily denied being involved or making any kind of an incriminating statement to anyone.  Milke had no communication with anyone other than cops before I talked with her.
Let me make this clear I went there at the request of Channel 10 television news for this interview.  I was hoping to get a confession.  Had she confessed to Saldate, she certainly would have confessed to me.   At a minimum she’d have either minimized her involvement or simply not talk about it.  Most suspects confess or tell whopping lies that can be disproven.  That did not happen with Milke.
The Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals has already found fault with Saldate’s interrogation of Milke, at least in the area of her Fifth Amendment rights under Miranda vs. Arizona.  They’ve yet to make a final ruling and could hold off beyond the summer recess of the Supreme Court.   We can only guess what the ruling might be.
I should also tell you that Saldate’s favorite method of interrogation never involves tape recorders.  He has a private chat with the accused and then the courts and juries have to guess just who told the truth after he claims to have gotten a confession.  Was it the cop, or the suspect?  We all know what’s the answer to than question.  
Milke’s current appeal lawyers are apparently planning to introduce one or more significant new issues that have not yet been litigated.  We can only hope that this woman is not put to death on such flimsy evidence as Saldate’s testimony.
On a side note, they tried to give Roger Scott a sweet plea bargain, if he’d offer testimony that would involve Milke.  He refused to do so.  Scott and Milke were never well acquainted or fond of each other.  Scott had nothing to lose and a lot to gain but I suspect that he felt that kind of a lie would get exposed.
Saldate claimed that using a tape recorder would inhibit suspects and prevent them from giving him a candid interview.  How lame is that?  Police learned from the beginning of the invention of tape recorders to conceal them from view.  I had no problem using a hidden tape recorder for an interview with Milke.
Unfortunately for Milke I was never asked to testify at Debra Milke’s trial.  I could have opened the eyes of the jury and they could have listened to that tape recording. It just didn’t happen because Milke had an ineffective lawyer.   Had I been called and the tape subpoenaed the verdict would have been a lot different. 
As for all Milke’s lawyers, not one of them ever thought to ask Saldate why he did not use a hidden tape recorder.  Saldate would not have been able to answer that with a straight face.  There are loads of these devices kept in police lockers everywhere in the world including Phoenix.
On December 3rd Debra Milke will have been held in solitary confinement for 24 solid years.  Thousands of horrible prison meals and degrading strip searches later she still suffers every day on Arizona’s Death Row.   It’s time for this woman to get what she has left of her life returned.

On a side note Arizona has already killed six prisoners in 2012 and is about to execute another within a few weeks.  They are deadly serious about Capital Punishment in this state. 

Sergio Oliva A Chicago Police Legend Has Passed Away

 Arnold Schwarzenegger seen here congratulating Sergio Oliva who just beat him for the Mr. Olympia Title.
Chicago, IL—In the early 1970’s a Cuban expatriate found employment as a physical fitness instructor for the Chicago Police Department.  He was a natural for the position but what he really wanted more than anything was to be a Chicago cop.
Sergio Oliva was beyond happy to live in free America where he competed in bodybuilding championships.  In 1969 he beat out a slightly more famous immigrant named Arnold Schwarzenegger for the title of Mr. Olympia.
Sergio had to work hard enough to learn how to read and write English as he prepared for the Chicago police civil service examination.  He passed however some say he got extra help from above on that one.  He entered the Chicago Police Academy at 720 West O’Brien Street on 26 April 1976.  
Sergio immediately had problems with both his kaki recruit uniform and later the regular police uniforms since there were no shirts available for someone of his size at any uniform store.  He had to have them custom made from scratch. His uniform allowance could not cover the cost.
Sergio was a gentle giant and soft spoken, good will ambassador who brought favorable attention to the department.  He worked in 024 Rogers Park District doing patrol.
Like most cops he had troubles in a marriage and was shot five times by his then wife Arleen Garrett.    His incredible muscle mass made him nearly bullet proof and he recovered quickly.  That marriage however did not survive.  
Sergio, 71passed  away yesterday apparently from kidney failure and I’m not yet sure of any arrangements.  I will try to keep you pasted.
UPDATE: Family and friends are invited to attend a wake scheduled for Monday, Nov. 19 at Barr Funeral Home, 6222 N. Broadway, from 2 p.m. to 8 p.m. A funeral mass will be held on Tuesday, Nov. 20 at St. Gertrude Catholic Church, 1420 W. Granville Ave. at 11 a.m.
Here Sergio is profiled in a video news story before he retired 10 years ago: