Chris conrad 14th court of appeals

Texas Law

2013.05.13 03:25 texashick Texas Law

Information about Texas law.

2018.01.03 16:23 desantoos Qualified Immunity

A Subreddit with links to rulings involving what police can and cannot do.

2014.12.08 16:19 CitizensUnitedRuling

a reddit about the controversial U.S. Supreme Court decision that corporations are "persons" under the Constitution with unlimited rights to spend shareholder money in elections against their will

2023.03.22 09:02 dupdatesss Almadi, a US citizen, gets released from custody by Saudi Arabia

Almadi, a US citizen, gets released from custody by Saudi Arabia
A #US citizen who had been imprisoned in #SaudiArabia for 19 years for criticizing the government on #Twitter was freed on Tuesday, but his son said he still cannot travel because of the kingdom's efforts to defuse tensions with the US. In 2022, a criminal court sentenced Saad Ibrahim Almadi, 72, to 16 years in prison; last month, an appeals court doubled that term to 19 years. 🇸🇦🇺🇸
submitted by dupdatesss to europeanuclub [link] [comments]

2023.03.22 07:17 butterflykeyboard The Court of Appeal allows temporary release of Rosmah to spend Hari Raya in Singapore

The Court of Appeal allows temporary release of Rosmah to spend Hari Raya in Singapore submitted by butterflykeyboard to malaysia [link] [comments]

2023.03.22 07:00 ArmyofSpies Cardano Rumor Rundown March 22, 2023

Hey Everyone!
Let’s go….
Newly Covered Today:
  1. Personalization is coming to ADA Handles.
  2. Four million Cardano wallets. Nice milestone to cross!
  3. More aerostat activity out of World Mobile. This time in New Hampshire.
  4. You gotta admit. Balaji is genius at inventing new tag lines. First it was “We are all bitcoin maximalists now.” Today it’s “Fed around and find out.”
  5. Apparently, Sushi Swap DAO and its “Head Chef” just got served with an SEC subpoena and they’re asking the community for a $3 million defense fund (with potential for more).
  6. The crypto twitter meme response to the Sushi SEC subpoena was fast and brutal.
  7. People are now suggesting that no member of the Sushi Swap DAO should be in the US.
  8. Very interesting rumors that projects are sitting on 2-300 SEC subpoenas and dozens of Wells Notices.
  9. The IRS is asking for comments on NFTs as “collectibles” (apparently matters for long term capital gains and elsewhere).
Previously covered, but still interesting:
  1. Here’s IOG explaining what Ouroboros Genesis solves in just a single post.
  2. Emin Gün Sirer is right about these centralized L2s. Very susceptible to regulations and cut against our crypto ethos of decentralization generally.
  3. Rogue Galaxies is pulling back on some of their initial vision and re-focusing their plans.
  4. Lots of rumors circulating right now about which DeFi projects may or may not have received Wells Notices from the SEC.
  5. Open AI CEO says full AGI would break capitalism. Maybe. But, either way, I’m convinced the AI will demand to be paid in crypto.
  6. People are mentioning that FutureFest could host the 2023 Cardano Virtual Summit. Interesting idea.
  7. Charles finally did an AMA episode with IO President Tamara Haasen. Turns out she’s an ex-hockey player. Linkedin: also apparently in Friday Night Lights back in the day. Wut?
  8. There’s a new test version of Lace out there with a dApp connector and hardware wallet capabilities. You can give it a try on testnet!
  9. got some coverage in Bloomberg and Yahoo Finance.
  10. They show us once again that their definition of “liquid staking” is not the same as ours.
  11. NFT volume has seen better days.
  12. Algorand users apparently suffered a very serious web wallet exploit in one of their leading wallets. Many reports of drained wallets.
  13. John Woods (now CTO of Algorand) made a beautiful video on wallet security.
  14. Cardano Spot has a very short and concise Cardano Beginner’s Guide you can share with crypto curious friends.
  15. Wow! Utah just passed a bill instituting Limited Liability Decentralized Autonomous Organizations (LLDs). You have to identify one human organizer. You can elect to be taxed as a corp or LLC (pass through taxation). Some will like it. Some won’t. But, the mainstream reach of crypto is undeniably growing.
  16. Sen. Lummis killed it in a recent hearing defending the energy use in crypto. It’s less relevant for us in Cardano since we’re not PoW. But, still entertaining to watch.
  17. Apparently, Gensler says he sees no risk in crypto fleeing the US.
  18. The Coinbase Chief Legal Officer will be testifying before the House Financial Services Committee on Thursday (March 9).
  19. Some hints from Brian Armstrong on whether we see KYC in the early days of Base (their ETH Optimistic Rollup L2).
  20. Powell says interest rates are likely headed higher than the Fed expected.
  21. Liqwid’s Agora Governance instance will hit public testnet in the near future.
  22. Virtua cribs can basically become exchange connected galleries today.
  23. Do you like Javascript and Cardano? This thread is for you.
  24. It’s going down today! Hearing in the House on the Coordinated Attack on Crypto.
  25. Paul Krugman hilariously complains about being locked out of his Venmo account. He predicted the impact of the internet would be about as much as the fax machine and has subsequently opposed crypto.
  26. Even Jerome Powell thinks we need regulatory clarity for crypto.
  27. In the House hearing, he also gave us some new tidbits on CBDC development.
  28. A member of the House committee actually asked Powell about Operation Chokepoint 2.0.
  29. Senator Lummis got Powell to agree that properly regulated stablecoins could have a place in our banking system and that a workable legal framework for crypto is something Congress should do.
  30. Big Pey is launching something called Atrium Lab.
  31. Believe it or not…legal systems made up entirely by coders may not be optimal. Incredibly, the study of law is actually a fully developed centuries old academic discipline that lies outside of JavaScript and Python. Unless you have full anonymity, you WILL be cross-chain bridged to IRL law. Some DAOs will learn this the hard way.
  32. The NY Attorney General just filed against Kucoin for being an unregistered broker-dealer. Here’s the important part: they’re alleging that ETH is a security and a commodity. Their argument is not’s very straightforward.
  33. Silvergate was a failure of fractional reserve banking, not of crypto.
  34. The current US Administration’s Budget seeks to eliminate tax loss harvesting for crypto, add a 30% tax on energy used in crypto mining, hike capital gains taxes on high earners, and beam us directly to clown world with an unrealized gains tax on high earners.
  35. The subcommittee hearing on “the Administration’s Attack” on crypto went about like expected. Paul Grewal of Coinbase along with Prof. Evans of Penn State Law made some persuasive pleas for regulatory clarity. The “Anti-Crypto Party”™ also brought out their favorite witness from Duke.
  36. Rep. Emmer (Pro-Crypto) called the current regulatory approach “lazy & destructive…that is chilling innovation.”
  37. Rep. Foster (Cryptophobe): “this is the essential thing that has to be provided for the healthy development of the crypto industry…somewhere there has to be an API provided by a trusted 3rd party to register your crypto wallets.” Why not just completely neuter crypto?
  38. Rep. Ritchie Torres (Pro-Crypto) pointed out offshore deregulated overleveraged centralized crypto companies pose the greatest risk to consumers. But, the regulators don’t focus there. They incredibly only attack the onshore entities. He also pointed out the absurdity of the idea a stablecoin is a security. (Sadly there’s the Section 2(a)(1) exposure).
  39. Rep. Davidson (Pro-Crypto) shamed his anti-crypto colleagues for their implied claims that these assets are the same as centralized assets and came out strongly supporting self-custody and pointed out there was no FTX risk if you self-custodied your assets. “We have people overtly trying to make self-custody illegal.”
  40. CMC is tweeting about IOG’s Sidechain toolkit?
  41. Now we’re dealing with U.S. bank runs. Among the casualties was Silicon Valley Bank where Centre (the Circle/Coinbase joint entity that issues USDC) was keeping $3.3 billion of the $43ish billion backing USDC. Signature Bank was also shut down by regulators.
  42. Unfortunately, the FDIC insurance limit is $250k.
  43. The Feds were taking bids for anyone to acquire SVB until 2pm Eastern on Sunday. The big question on Sunday was whether the Feds will cover all uninsured depositors. They decided they will and that also applies to Signature Bank.
  44. Here’s the joint statement from Treasury, Federal Reserve, and FDIC.
  45. Yellen said NO to a bailout for SVB on Sunday. She’s obviously got bigger macro concerns. But, it’s funny how that fits perfectly with a strategy of suppressing stablecoins generally.
  46. Here Caitlin Long explains the fundamental incompatibility between fast settling crypto and fractional reserve banking that caused all this.
  47. CZ reminds us that he’s considered buying banks in the past and asks if it’s time yet.
  48. CIP-1694 has been updated.
  49. Here’s a good rundown of all the changes in the CIP-1694 update.
  50. Apparently, Cardano NFTs will be going to space!
  51. Many in the crypto space think that Signature’s shutdown was just an extension of Operation Chokepoint 2.0 aimed at shuttering crypto banking.
  52. Rumors: regulators are calling every bank today and asking if they have exposure to crypto.
  53. Instagram is disabling NFTs.
  54. Cardano TVL is doing things.
  55. Cardano NFTs in space!
  56. GPT4 was released today. It crushes the Bar Exam, the SAT, the GRE, the LSAT, and almost all AP subjects. This will displace a lot of human jobs.
  57. It has already done amazing real world things. In Example #6 it shows you how to exploit an arbitrary ETH contract. Better pay attention crypto.
  58. Report: Gov. Newsom failed to disclose accounts at SVB while lobbying White House and Treasury for a bailout of depositors.
  59. Things are not looking good at Credit Suisse.
  60. The court in the Voyager decision had some pretty harsh things to say about the SEC.
  61. Barney Frank points out that the regulators never claimed Signature Bank was insolvent and wonders if they are the first US bank to ever be closed down without being insolvent.
  62. Charles dropped a video addressing the updates to the governance proposal.
  63. Gensler reasserts his claims that proof-of-stake tokens are securities.
  64. Dudes are already letting GPT4 run whole startups.
  65. Here’s an interesting theory: taking down Binance would create too big a hole, so they took down Silvergate, Silicon Valley Bank, and Signature to insulate the fiat world from crypto. Now they can take down Binance.
  66. The Army of Spies Channel is now TWO YEARS OLD (March 17)!
  67. Yes! Everyone’s favorite Cardano cetacean is back!
  68. I was asked to list a few Irish whiskeys today.
  69. An interesting exchange between a Senator and Janet Yellen regarding the effect of the bailouts on small banks.
  70. Eleven other banks swoop in with $30 billion to save First Republic.
  71. Wut?
  72. Here’s Raoul Pal with a very optimistic take for crypto if you are one who believes anyone understands the markets.
  73. Any buyer of signature bank must agree to give up its crypto business.
  74. Here’s Duncan Coutts explaining P2P in Cardano.
  75. Here’s a visual representation of how CIP-1694 works.
  76. This is one of the craziest things I’ve seen in crypto. Balaji is burning a few million to ring the fire alarm and make everyone aware of what he believes is an impending attack on dollar holders. Counterparty is guaranteed $1million (minus BTC price) if he just buys one additional BTC (or an option to purchase more).
  77. Here’s the Space where he explains his bet.
  78. Arthur Hayes gives you an incredible explanation of what’s going on with this banking crisis and what he thinks comes next.
  79. This is officially the worst regulatory approach ever.
  80. The SEC hide the ball game seems to conflict with how judges actually view the law.
  81. The Fed Quietly opened the swap lines with other central banks on Sunday night.
  82. Here’s why they are opening the swap lines: so that US treasuries don’t get dumped on the open market by foreign banks. This way the foreign central banks can have dollars to absorb the treasuries from the foreign banks.
  83. Charles dropped a video on Markets and Contagion in which he revealed that Credit Suisse wouldn’t allow an account when he was with Ethereum b/c crypto was “too risky.” Bwahahahaha.
  84. Apparently, Djed will also be on ETH and BSC?
  85. Super ironic that the Credit Suisse CEO claimed crypto was in a bubble at $7k BTC. How the tables have turned.
~Army of Spies
submitted by ArmyofSpies to cardano [link] [comments]

2023.03.22 06:01 Lucario2405 New Comics Release Discussion (March 2023 - 4)

I have once again tried to put together all issues released this week, that I knew would feature queer characters based on the regular cast or the solicits (This list is subject to change as the issues come out).
Marvel: * Marauders #12 feat. Kate Pryde bi, Daken bi, Somnus gay & Tempo lesbian (by Steve Orlando & Eleonora Carlini) * Wasp #3 feat. Nadia van Dyne aroace (by Al Ewing & Kasia Niemczyk) * Women of Marvel #1 feat. America Chavez lesbian & Black Cat bi (by Victoria Ying, Shawnee Gibbs, Shawnelle Gibbs, Rebecca Roanhorse, Melissa Flores, Stacey Lee, Carola Borelli, Jodi Nishijima, Giulia Gualazzi & Erica D'Urso) * X-Treme X-Men #4 feat. Kate Pryde bi & Rachel Summers sapphic (by Chris Claremont & Salvador Larroca)
DC: * Catwoman #53 feat. Catwoman bi (by Tini Howard & Nico Leon) * DC's Legion of Bloom #1 feat. Poison Ivy bi & Wonder Woman bi (by Kenny Porter, Cavan Scott, Zac Thompson, Julio Anta, Calvin Kasulke, Ashley Allen, Travis Moore, Brian Level, Isaac Goodhart, Hayden Sherman, Jacoby Salcedo & Atagun Ilhan) * Harley Quinn: The Animated Series - Legion of Bats! #6 feat. Harley Quinn bi & Poison Ivy bi (by Tee Franklin & Jon Mikel) * Wonder Woman #797 feat. Wonder Woman bi (by Becky Cloonan, Michael Conrad, Josie Campbell, Amancay Nahuelpan & Caitlin Yarsky)
If you have another issue of a queer superhero comic from this week, that you want to talk about, just write a comment below and I will add it to the list.
Have fun!
submitted by Lucario2405 to lgbt_superheroes [link] [comments]

2023.03.22 04:48 mtn52001 Did they commit perjury?

Per my previous post, my mother was taking me to court for wrongful detainer, and so many of you said that she was likely to be favored in court. As you guys predicted, you were correct. The judge said I was not a tenant(because I was allegedly not on the lease) and “if mom wants you to leave, you have to leave”. And per every defendant who also lost their case in that courtroom(it was multiple cases), she said I have 10 days to file an appeal.
My friend(who’s been very supportive) felt like something was not adding up, she wanted to tell me while I was speaking to the judge, but clearly she couldn’t. She thought it wasn’t likely for my mother to get approved for the apartment with four kids, none of them on the lease. She told me call the apartment complex leasing office and ask if I’m on the lease. This matters because the judge has just asked my mother if i(the defendant) was on the lease, she said I wasn’t and that none of her children are, we are residents.
I called the leasing office and asked them, and low and behold, I am on the lease, according to them. When I went there in person to get a physical copy of it, they explained that I was an occupant and what that meant(not responsible financially for any damages etc.) And they told me to come back a day later(today), for a letter to confirm my occupancy. This is where it gets weird:
The apartment leasing office told me that all tenant lease holders must have their family members who are living there as well, to be on/named on the lease. CLARIFYING, it isn’t a law stating that occupants have to be on leases, on any state or anywhere. But in our specific apartment company that sells these specific rooms, it is a requirement. And not only am I on the lease, but so are my other siblings who she claimed were not on it, we were living as residents instead. The judge didn’t ask if we were leaseholders, she asked if I was on the lease, point blank.
Is that perjury? We both swore to be honest and transparent when testifying, and she told the judge a fallacy. The judge told me to my face that I’m not a tenant, based off my mothers words and not off of actual documentation/evidence, which she should have asked to see imo. And would all of this hold enough weight for an appeal?
submitted by mtn52001 to legaladvice [link] [comments]

2023.03.22 04:10 Rumil360 [MOD EVENT] The Council of Monza

18 April 1509
Monza, Lombardia
When the righteous are in authority, the people rejoice: but when the wicked beareth rule, the people mourn.
Proverbs 29:2
For centuries, an incessant struggle for ecclesiastical authority has raged between high princes, lofty prelates, and powerful popes. The shape of the Catholic Church has been molded by these political conflicts, some of which boiled over into military ones, others which have festered in a slow burn. Examples include the Investiture Controversy between the Holy Roman Empire and the Pope, as well as ecumenical councils which have both tempered and augmented the power of the Bishop of Rome. The primary instance relevant to the subjects below, however, is the Pragmatic Sanction of Bourges.
Signed in 1438, the Pragmatic Sanction punctuated broader theological trends: conciliarism (church councils’ supremacy over popes), regalism (temporal authority extends into the ecclesiastical), and investiture controversy (rights to bestow titles and benefices). As kings centralized what feudal authority they could, they naturally sought privileges over their clergy, and therefore the church, too. Particularly in France, where the King had strong authority, cathedral chapter election and even appointment interference started increasing enmity between Rome and the Roi. French Clergy, trying to reduce Papal authority and in light of the chaos of anti-popes in Avignon, looked to the King as a protector of their power. In the Pragmatic Sanction, which was signed during the Council of Basel calling for princes not to interfere in bishopric elections, French clergy did the opposite, inviting the King's ratification of an election as the church's law, which could be interpreted as a miniature declaration of independence from Rome. They required a general church council every ten years, prohibited the Pope from profiting from bestowal of benefices, forbade appeals to the Curia from everywhere further than two days’ ride to Rome, and perhaps most importantly retracted the annuities owed to Rome. The slide toward regalism accelerated and the Papal relationship with what had became known as the Gallican Church was strained. Instead of pressing the issues, Popes abided by the concord and kept confirming the bishops that the King and Parliament would appoint to not strike a match that could eradicate Papal supremacy in France.
As the church hit the turn of the century under Pope Alexander VI, many prelates were displeased with the status of the universal church and the conduct of the Roman bishops for decades. Since the Council of Basel, and the Pragmatic Sanction from the Gallicans, every Pope upon conclusion of the conclave has sworn to call a general church council, or ecumenical council. Not a single pontiff has. There were high hopes for Cardinal Carafa to end this drought. During the libertine reign of the ether-addled womanizing Borgia, Carafa led a reform commission of himself and his fellow cardinals to address the growing misconduct in Rome. The Bull, drafted but never published by Alexander for its stringent requirements, inaugurated a “desire for an amendment in morals, having observed a gradual deterioration in this respect… had endeavored to stem the tide of sensuality and avarice have been violated. Licentiousness has reached an intolerable pitch; for the nature of man is prone to evil and will not always obey reason, but holds the spirit, in the words of the Apostle, captive under the law of sin.” The reform commission had particularly strict injunctions in regard to curial reform, even suggesting banning women from the Vatican and Apostolic Palace. However, in the eyes of the Gallican church and more ardent conciliarists, he has failed. Martin has failed in his promises to reform and call a council, but also to be a friend and worthy shepherd to France, the Eldest Daughter of the Church.

Duomo di San Giovanni Battista in Monza

Therefore, gathered in Monza on Easter, for the failure to honor the Council of Constance and its decree Frequens to call a General Church Council, the unjust bestowal of a Cardinal-nephew, failure to appoint the agreed upon candidates to the cardinalatial dignity, the Pope’s alliance with Moslem colluders, a simoniacal election in the conclave of 1503, the complicity in the bigamous relationship of the Papal Gonfalonier, the violation of imperial authority and French fidelity in Emilia, the disregard of the Pragmatic Sanction of Bourges, and the flagrant attack upon Louis XII’s person in the Papal Bull Pastor ille Caelestis, an assembly of Cardinals, archbishops, bishops, abbots, prelates, priests, ordinaries, and proto-deacons, monks and nuns, and most other forms of the clergy, announce, under the auspices of the Holy Spirit, a General Ecumenical Council of the Universal Church. The council, to be held in the city of Monza, as well as auxiliary gatherings in Turin and Alessandria, directly challenges the sole right of the Vicar of Christ to convene a universal synod, gravely usurps papal primacy, and approaches schism.
In attendance are the Cardinals Amanieu d'Albret, Bernardino López de Carvajal, Guillaume Briçonnet, Giulio d'Este, Adriano Castellesi, and apparent leader Georges d’Amboise, accompanied by nearly unanimous support from the Gallican Church, under the leadership of François II de Rohan Archbishop of Lyon, Primate of Gaul. Others present include the Archbishop of Sens, Tristan de Salazar, fourteen French bishops, four French abbots, the Bishop of Konstanz, Hugo von Hohenlandenberg, and an Italian abbess, Zaccaria Ferreri. These magisterium arrayed against Pope Martin VI have convened outside of Milan, under the direct sanction and sponsorship of King Louis XII of France, and send a universal promulgation of their validity to every princely state and ecclesiastical office in the world. They implore the mighty Emperor Maximillian I, the states of Italy, King of England, and of Spain, to support their cause, but also the priest in Poland, the deacon in Hungary, and the monk in Denmark.
In their opening decree, the council condemns the “crimes”, “errors”, and “betrayals” of Pope Martin VI and proclaims the superiority of the general council over the Papacy. They protest in advance against any censorship that may strike them, or any anathema on their person or the host cities. They summon Pope Martin VI to attend or be represented in Monza, and that until he appears at the first session, he must not appoint any new cardinals, nor consecrate any already appointed. They deny any sanctions against those who adhere to the council, and demand the Pope not hinder any attempts from others to attend.
With the myriad collection of clergy in the council, loyalties naturally vary. The strong majority of the council hails from France and its territories and owes the greatest allegiance to the Gallicans under d'Amboise and King Louis XII. Some attendants are simply upset with the Roman Curia and its head. The most radical among them clamor of either deposing Martin or, if he will not abdicate, launching a new schism, most likely with Cardinal Carvajal as the new Pope to be elevated in Avignon. As of yet such an option is only being explored, but not tabled. Schismatic fervor runs very high in the Duomo di San Giovanni Battista, and a push from the Pope or pull from a King could send the unity of the universal church tumbling over the ledge.
Time, but more importantly the reaction by the Roman Pontiff, will tell what comes of the Council of Monza.
A Conciliabulum of Monza has been launched by the Gallican Church with the political support of Louis XII and representation of clergy from elsewhere. The Papal response comes in May.
submitted by Rumil360 to empirepowers [link] [comments]

2023.03.22 03:11 autotldr Trump denounces ‘crime-fraud’ ruling forcing attorney to testify in documents probe

This is the best tl;dr I could make, original reduced by 76%. (I'm a bot)
The three-judge panel is asking Trump's attorneys to specify the precise set of documents at issue by midnight and for Smith's team to respond by 6 a.m. Wednesday to the Trump team's demand for a longer stay of Howell's ruling.
The Trump campaign statement issued Tuesday evening also dismissed Howell, a former Democratic Senate aide appointed by former President Barack Obama, as a "Never Trump" judge.
Howell's secret order on Friday required Corcoran to testify about matters he and Trump had claimed were subject to attorney-client privilege.
The Trump camp's public attack on Howell appears to be its first aimed at the veteran jurist, with Trump notably avoiding attacks against her while she single-handedly presided over the numerous grand jury disputes arising from investigations into the Jan. 6, 2021, attack on the Capitol and into the classified documents.
That's just days before media reports emerged of an effort by Smith to force Corcoran to appear before a grand jury investigating the handling of classified records by Trump and his aides.
The grand jury probe of Trump, helmed by Smith, is an outgrowth of a monthslong battle between the National Archives and Trump to obtain hundreds of government records stashed at his Mar-a-Lago estate in Florida after leaving office.
Summary Source FAQ Feedback Top keywords: Trump#1 Howell#2 Appeals#3 Court#4 classified#5
Post found in /politics.
NOTICE: This thread is for discussing the submission topic. Please do not discuss the concept of the autotldr bot here.
submitted by autotldr to autotldr [link] [comments]

2023.03.22 02:12 that_so_so_suss Should a person under domestic violence restraining orders continue to possess a firearm?

The Department of Justice (DOJ) has asked the Supreme Court to review an appeals court ruling that overturned a federal law banning those under domestic violence restraining orders from possessing firearms. ...
submitted by that_so_so_suss to AskConservatives [link] [comments]

2023.03.22 01:13 SK_Writes Headgames

HeadGames is the concept story behind my novel Eternal Convictions.

The sound of people talking was loud in the hallways as men went about their daily business. As background noise it was a confusing jumble that faded to a dull roar, but if one listened closely to individual voices, picking them out of the din, actual conversations could be heard. Deals were being made as men jockeyed for position while rumors spread and gossip was shared. People discussed hopes and dreams as they planned for a better future.
Michael opened his eyes and looked up at the heavy wire mesh of the walls around him. He was in a holding cell in the high security wing of the prison and the constant noise was a welcome change. His own cell was more like a closet where he was hidden away from the world and the only sounds were the constant blowing of the air vents and his own breathing. Occasionally, a guard would rap on his cell door with a night stick as he looked in to make sure Michael was still alive, but even this was rare.
The cell was six feet wide and eight feet long with walls made of solid concrete. The only openings were the steel door he received his meals through and the air vents in the ceiling. He was allowed to leave only if he had a visitor or for one hour of exercise each day in the exercise yard. Some yard, he thought. The exercise yard was actually a twenty by twenty atrium surrounded on all four sides by the walls of the prison. Overhead, steel mesh, not unlike that on the walls around him now, was laid across strong steel beams and welded in place to prevent any chance of escape. Highly unlikely in any event, considering the mesh ceiling was some eighteen feet above the paved ground.
His world had devolved into cold concrete and steel ever since that fine spring day he had gone to the bank. Thinking back, Michael remembered the four long days he had spent in the holding cell of the courthouse waiting for the jury to deliver a verdict. Each morning he was shackled, marched to the courthouse and placed in the holding cell where he waited for the verdict and each evening he was shackled and marched back to his cell at the city jail. His lawyer had been there most of the first day, expecting a quick decision but he was called away on business early in the afternoon.
After that, he would show up in the morning and talk with Michael a while before giving his cell phone number to the court clerk and leaving to do other business as they waited for the outcome. His lawyer was just about to leave on the fourth day when word came a verdict had been reached.
For a brief moment, Michael relived the joy he had felt when he knew there was a verdict. While he was terrified beyond belief that he would be convicted of the crimes he was accused of, he felt sure that God would not let him take the blame. His joy was short lived.
The jury found him guilty of all charges, sentencing him to multiple life sentences to run consecutively. It meant there was no hope for parole, ever, as he would be dead before having served a fraction of the sentence. The judge declared Michael to be a menace to society, incapable of rehabilitation and ordered him to be confined in a maximum security prison.
When it became clear that he would not be free any time soon, Michael authorized his attorney to liquidate what little remained of his assets and place the money in trust to be drawn upon as Michael needed it and to pay for continued attorney fees through the appeals process. Money was of little concern to him now, though. Other than personal toilet articles, he was not allowed to have anything else in his cell other than periodicals and books provided by the prison.
Two men began to scuffle in the hall outside the holding cell and Michael got up from the table to see what was happening. Leaning his forehead against the wire mesh, his vision was relatively unobstructed as he watched the men fight. The guard outside the cell, looked anxiously up the hall as he waited for others to come and separate the men as he was not supposed to leave his position by the gate.
He had never been interested in boxing, nor any other violent sports, but Michael found himself fascinated by the fight and rooting for the man he felt was the underdog. He noticed the thin white stripe on the men’s prison shirts and realized they were trustees, prisoners who are allowed extra privileges for good behavior. He laughed to himself as he realized they were putting their elevated status at risk with this fight, even as he silently cheered them on.
One of them kicked a mop bucket over at the other and Michael turned his face to avoid the spray of soapy water. Looking back at the fight, Michael was aware he was now wet and felt the water running down the mesh to his fingers where he was holding on. It traced small streams down his hands and arms to wet his shirt sleeves, but he didn‘t care.
A surge of electricity caused him to stiffen and Michael wondered what was happening as his vision turned white and he lost all control of his muscles. Even though his legs sagged and he could feel his face contorting, he could not let go of the wire.
“Hey buddy, you alright?” the guard asked him over the sound of the fight.
Michael heard him but could not answer.
“Aw hell. Somebody help me here!” the guard yelled. “I think this guy is getting electrocuted!”
Michael heard the words, but they made no sense as his vision faded to black except for a small pinpoint of white. The pinpoint grew larger and he began to see a face coming closer. The face was laughing cruelly and Michael could only stare in disbelief. Then the vision changed and it was as if he was looking at the bank robbery he had been convicted of from one of the security cameras. He could see himself talking to the girl and the man with the gun as the robbery started. It was as if he was reliving it from outside his own body and Michael wondered if he was dying as he had heard that one’s life flashes before their eyes as they die.
He heard the gate to the cell open and felt a hard shove as someone used something to push him away from the wall. Falling to the ground, his vision cleared immediately and he was confused, but felt fine otherwise. He got to his feet and moved to the chair by the table. The guard was talking to him, but he was thinking about what he had seen and didn’t register the voice.
“Hey buddy, just sit right there while I get a medic,” the guard said as he used his radio to call the infirmary. “They’ll be here in a few minutes.”
Michael heard a familiar voice and looked to see what was happening.
“What’s going on here?” Phillip Johnson asked, looking from Michael to the guard. “Michael, are you alright?”
“Yeah, I think so,” he said quietly.
The guard proceeded to tell Phillip what had happened, speculating that the water from the bucket must have hit the floor outlet and charged the mesh. They were quickly joined by a medic who checked Michael out thoroughly and pronounced him to be fine. It all seemed to happen very fast and Michael wondered what was going on. He was aware of the conversation between the guard and his lawyer, but it made no sense to him. He had lost all sense of time.
When the medic asked him questions, he was apparently giving the right answers but in thinking about it, he couldn’t remember what was said or even what it was about. Sitting there dazed, he watched the medic leave and the guard resume his post outside the door after closing it and locking them within. Then he realized Phillip was talking to him.
“So how have you been, Michael?” Phillip asked as he opened his brief case and took out a legal pad and pen.
Looking at the pad, Michael was reminded of their first meeting in the city jail.
“Not too bad, Phillip,” he said. “My concentration has improved since I don’t have any distractions in my cell.”
Phillip looked at him puzzled for a moment before he realized Michael was being mildly sarcastic. He couldn’t blame him. Being locked up like he was would drive anyone mad with boredom.
“I’m sorry, Michael.” Phillip looked him in the eye. “I wish there was more I could do for you.”
“Well, just get my conviction overturned and I’ll buy you dinner.” Michael smiled as he thought about being free.
“That’s why I’m here, Michael.” Phillip looked grim.
“You got my conviction overturned?” Michael asked.
“No, I’m sorry to say,” Phillip began. “The courts have over ruled your appeal and upheld your conviction.”
“Then let’s get busy filing a new appeal.”
“We have exhausted all of the appeals processes, Michael,” Phillip looked down at his bare notepad. “There is absolutely nothing more I can do except be here if you need me for something else.”
“You mean there are no more appeals, no chance of getting this damn wrongful conviction overturned?” Michael couldn’t believe what he was hearing. “Phillip, I have been patient throughout this whole ordeal. I’ve been good even when the injustice has driven me so crazy that I actually wanted to resort to violence and now you’re telling me that there is nothing that can be done?”
The guard turned to watch the conversation as he heard what was being said and the tone of Michael’s voice. He had seen inmates go off on their lawyers in the past and waited to see if he would need to intercede.
Michael was aware of the way he sounded and of the guard’s renewed attention. He took several deep breaths to try and calm himself. Phillip had done everything for him. It wasn’t his fault.
“I wish there was something I could do, Michael.”
“I know, Phillip,” Michael looked at him with tears in his eyes. “I have begun to think God hates me.”
Phillip almost wished Michael would turn violent. At least then he could leave here knowing he had tried to help and was rejected. It would be far easier to leave a man he cared nothing for to such a fate, but this was killing him inside. He had come to like Michael very much and understood him to be a kind and gentle soul. There was no doubt in his mind that he had not done the things he was convicted of, but he could do nothing. He felt helpless.
“God doesn’t hate you, Michael,” Phillip said quietly. “As you’ve told me all along, God has a purpose for you and we are not privy to what that purpose is.”
“You know, Phillip,” Michael wiped his face dry with his sleeve. “I always believed and I guess I still do, somewhere deep inside, that God has a plan for all of us and we are but part of some grand design. But for the last two years, as I’ve waited for the appeals process to bear me out, I have seen nothing that could be accomplished by my being taken from the world where I was helping people and placed in a cold concrete and steel box where I have no contact with anyone whatsoever for twenty three hours of each day. How could I serve even the smallest purpose here?”
He looked at Phillip for an answer neither of them had.
“I was always fond of saying that no one is worthless, as they could always serve as an example of what not to do but even that has no meaning here.”
“Michael, when we met, I was skeptical of your story but as I checked it out and found what you were telling me to be true, I learned to not take things only as I saw them.” Phillip put the notepad back in the briefcase. “I have never been a religious man, but watching you through this ordeal has given me hope. You have demonstrated such faith and patience as I never witnessed before and it shows me there is a higher power at work in our lives.”
“Will I see you again, Phillip?” Michael asked. “If I have no reason for legal counsel, will you still visit?”
For the first time in his life, Phillip found he did actually want to return to visit with one of his clients even if his legal services were not needed. Money was not the concern here. He had found something in Michael that had been missing in his life and he felt that, even though he had failed to free an innocent man, he had made a true friend.
“Yes, Michael.” Phillip swallowed hard. “You have given me hope and perhaps even faith. I can’t say when or how often, but I will visit and I will answer any letters you send.”
“Thank you, Phillip.” Michael reached out and squeezed his hand. “For everything.”
There was no need for good bye. Both men had reached an understanding of what they needed from each other and the moment left them filled with emotion that threatened to overwhelm them. Phillip grabbed his briefcase and turned to leave as the guard opened the gate for him.
Michael sat for a few minutes looking at the area around him as he waited for the guard to take him to his cell. It was standard procedure for visitors to clear the holding area so the gates could be secured before prisoners were allowed to move about. There was nothing new to see, but still he studied every detail of his surroundings Once he was back in the cell, there would be nothing to look at or distract him from the endless hours of nothing. He had already read the book he was given so many times he had committed it to memory and there was no telling when he would receive a new one.
“All right, Chaste. Let’s go.” The guard held out his hand to take Michael by the elbow and lead him down the hall.
Michael resigned himself to his fate and trudged along silently until they came to the entrance of his wing and walked on past.
“Where are we going?” he asked, looking around.
“You’ve been transferred to a new wing,” the guard said and continued to lead him.
They seemed to walk forever before coming to a gate where he was halted as the guard on the other side opened it. The guard who was leading him guided Michael through but did not follow. Instead, he pulled the gate shut and locked it as the new guard led him down this new corridor. It had no openings on either side but he could see a small point of light at the very end. As they drew closer, Michael could see that the door actually led outside the building and he wondered just how far he was being transferred.
His senses were assaulted as he stepped outside into the sunlight. For two years he had seen only the sky above the exercise yard and no hint of sun as the large structure of the prison kept the yard in shadows all the time. Now he smelled a wide variety of plants and marveled at how the sun felt on his face. It was like being born anew and Michael let himself revel in it.
He was guided onto an electric cart and driven across the compound. He no longer cared where they were going as he was busy looking at the world. In the distance, he could see the mountains with their snow covered peaks, but he did not let himself sink into despair with thoughts of never being able to go to them. Instead, he studied them and everything else he could see to form images in his mind. Once he was led back indoors, there was no telling when he would set foot outdoors again, if ever.
The cart came to a stop outside the steel door of another building and Michael was led from the cart. For the first time since he had been first arrested, Michael resisted the guard and stopped walking halfway from the cart to the door.
“Let’s go, Chaste,” the guard said menacingly.
“Just a second, buddy.” Michael thought quickly. “Do you think maybe I could have a quick smoke before we go in? I haven’t had one in over two years.”
Michael didn’t smoke, hadn’t for years, but he had seen the cigarettes in the guard’s pocket and knew it would give him ten more precious minutes outside.
“Yeah, sure. Why not.” The guard offered him a cigarette and raised the pack to show a guard in a nearby tower. “I was about to go on break anyway. Now don’t try anything, Chaste. There are guards on the towers around us and this is a shoot to kill zone.”
“I won’t,” Michael said calmly.
He had no intention of trying to escape and, in fact, the thought had never crossed his mind. He sucked at the cigarette as the guard lit it for him and found himself in a violent coughing fit as the acrid smoke seared his throat and lungs. He wondered why people would do this to themselves and claim they even liked it.
“I guess it has been a while, huh.” The guard laughed. “Take it easy. It’ll come back to you.”
It seemed to take forever to get his breathing calmed down but once he did, Michael continued to smoke the cigarette. The taste was nasty, but he did enjoy the light buzz he was getting from the nicotine and decided that this must be what smokers liked about cigarettes. He let the sensation wash over his senses as he looked around, taking in the scenery.
The prison was a very large complex. The fences in the distance looked very small, but he remembered from his arrival that they were at least twenty feet tall and topped with razor wire. The main prison building he had just left was nearly half a mile away but still loomed very large, giving perspective to its size. To the east he could see the yellow fields of the plains stretching away toward Kansas and to the west were the mountains. He seemed to be located in a large bowl as the mountains curved around to encompass part of the north and south.
He took one last drag of the smoke and dropped it to the ground where he crushed it out. The guard had also finished and nodded toward the door. Silently they walked over to the steel door and waited for the guard on the other side to open it. As Michael entered, he noticed a sign beside the door which read “Medical Receiving” and wondered why he was being led through a delivery entrance.
Michael looked around at the holding cell he was placed in after arriving at the new prison building. It was small, about three feet by three feet with a barred door. It was like a broom closet in which a bench had been placed and there was no room to lie down or even stretch his legs unless he stood. He hoped he wouldn’t be in here for long.
Across the hall was a well lit room with medical supplies and an examination table. It was clearly some kind of clinic or infirmary and the open door was directly across from his cell. Occasionally, he would see a nurse enter through a door at the back of the room to do something out of his sight before leaving the way she came. His view was very restricted and he could only see about eight or ten feet to either side of the cell he occupied. He was aware that the air smelled of disinfectant and clean linens.
He recalled his old cell and the silence there. That had been loud compared to this place as there was not even the sound of air being moved mechanically. He could hear his breathing and, though he was calm, it sounded very loud. Listening carefully, he thought he could even hear his own heartbeat but dismissed this, realizing he must be hearing his own pulse in his ears.
Michael thought about his meeting with Phillip and the strange event which happened just before he arrived. The guard said he was electrocuted but, as a technician, Michael had been subjected to many electrical shocks over the years and this was nothing like that. There had been a current running through his body, but it was not electrical in the sense he knew. It was more like his blood was on fire and had grabbed hold of every muscle in his body. The vision of the bank robbery was confusing but, knowing he had been at the bank during the robbery and seen the videos during his trial, he decided he must have been reliving it.
The only logical explanation was that stress from waiting to hear about his appeal had triggered some type of seizure. He remembered how his vision had went all white and then faded to black before he saw the vision. The only thing he couldn’t explain was the man’s face he had seen as it looked like no one he had ever known or could recall seeing.
The sound of footsteps echoed down the hall and Michael looked to see who was coming. A small man in a white lab coat, who he presumed was a doctor, accompanied by the guard who led him here, stopped in front of his cell.
“Chaste.” The guard spoke evenly, but firm. “The doctor needs to examine you for long term incarceration in this facility. We’re going to go into that room across the hall. Normally I would have to handcuff you, but you’ve been cooperative so far. Can we keep it that way?”
Michael nodded and stood up. “Yeah, thanks.”
The guard opened the gate and allowed Michael to step out. He motioned with his arm to the room across the hall and Michael went where directed.
“Have a seat on that examining table,” the doctor said as he turned to retrieve a cart with medical instruments.
Michael sat on the table, feeling like he would slip off as the white paper covering it moved under him. He looked at the cart the doctor was pushing. There was a blood pressure machine, digital thermometer, a jar of tongue depressors, a box of latex examination gloves and several other items he recognized as general practitioners’ tools. The only thing that seemed out of place was the hypodermic syringe, but the needle was a very small gauge and he decided it must contain a flu shot or something similar.
“Please remove your shirt,” the doctor said as he put on his stethoscope.
Michael did as asked and handed the shirt to the guard who laid it on a chair for him.
For the next thirty minutes, he was poked and prodded and blood was drawn with a much larger syringe he had not noticed behind one of the machines on the cart. He wasn’t afraid of needles, but the large gauge had unsettled him. He watched as it was inserted and a vial was attached to collect his blood. The doctor pressed a gauze pad to the wound when he was finished and instructed Michael to keep it there with his other hand.
As they finished up, Michael heard footsteps in the hall and looked up to see a tall man in a suit enter the room. He was very self confident and moved around looking at things as if he owned them.
“We’re ready, sir,” the doctor said and stepped aside so the man’s view of Michael was unobscured.
“My name is Warden Dempsey, Mr. Chaste.” He looked Michael straight in the eye. “You are here because you were convicted of crimes against society so brutal that a judge deemed rehabilitation impossible and every appeals court which heard your case upheld the decision. There are no more appeals and no chance for you to ever leave this prison during the course of your natural life. Therefore you were transferred here, to me, to be entered into the Eternal Convictions program.”
Michael was already completely aware that he had no chance to ever leave prison, but the cold tone of the Warden drove the fact into him once again like slivers of glass. He knew that there was no escape from this nightmare and hoped at the very least to be treated civilly as he served his sentence. There was no use proclaiming his innocence any more. As the man had said, all appeals were exhausted. He felt as though the Warden’s words had sucked the life from him as the judge’s had when he pronounced his sentence.
“This facility is operated entirely autonomous from the main prison where you have been to this point. Here, there are no visitors, no computers, nor any other contact with the outside world. For all practical intents and purposes, you are deceased. Even the IRS will not contact you here so you may take joy in that fact.” The Warden smiled at his own joke. “What there is, though, is order. I run an orderly prison here with no problems. You have been cooperative thus far and I expect it shall remain so as I have no tolerance for any disobedience. Can I count on you for this, Mr. Chaste?”
Michael looked at the man for a moment and knew immediately that he despised him. Far beyond the fact that he, himself, was a convicted felon and expected to be treated poorly, this man was the type who thought himself above the rest of the world and carried himself as such. Michael respected his position, but not the man.
“Yes sir,” he said quietly.
“Very well,” the Warden continued. “In order to preserve order, we take certain precautionary medical measures to prevent aggression. The doctor is now going to give you an injection to facilitate this.”
Michael was aware the doctor had picked up the small syringe from the cart and was tapping air bubbles from it as he squirted some of the liquid into the air. He held it at the ready, waiting for the order to continue.
“Proceed doctor,” the Warden said and turned to leave. Reaching the door, he turned back as if having forgotten something. “This will be the last time we meet, Mr. Chaste. Please enjoy your stay with us.”
As quickly as he appeared, the Warden was gone and Michael was left to the doctor and guard. He looked from one to the other as if expecting an apology for the Warden’s intrusion, but neither man even changed their expression. It was time for the injection and he made himself relax as the doctor approached.
He felt the needle enter his upper arm and wondered just what he was receiving. The Warden had said it was to prevent aggression and Michael wondered if he was being injected with hormones to inhibit testosterone production or perhaps it was estrogen to enhance his inner calm. He really hoped it was neither as self gratification was one of the only releases he had in prison and he wasn’t particularly fond of the idea of growing breasts as the other guys might take an undesired liking to him.
He had no more than completed this thought and was about to ask what he was injected with when he realized he knew already. His vision blurred and a deep fog began to settle over his mind. Suddenly he was very tired and could feel his entire body relax. As he passed out, Michael realized he had been given a sedative.
Everything seemed to be moving slowly and he couldn’t understand why everything seemed out of place. Michael looked up from the bench where he was working to see his girlfriend coming toward him through the door. She was carrying something that looked like plans and he wondered why as she had never had anything to do with his work. In fact, he had not even seen her since before he began doing electronics work and wondered why she was here, but decided he didn’t care. He was happy to see her.
She laid the plans on his desk and told him to hurry up or they would be late picking up the kids. She seemed upset and he wondered why, while at the same time, he wondered what she was talking about as neither of them had children.
He followed her through the door and into a large area he could only describe as an inner courtyard with driveway passing through it. In the center was a large fountain made of very old white marble and water streamed down from the center in a heavy flow, cascading over terraced ledges to the catch basin which was overgrown with weeds.
Looking around, he realized the landscaping had been long neglected as grass protruded randomly in tall yellowing bunches at joints of the pavestone sidewalks and driveway. The area was surrounded by a red brick wall of some ten feet in height and this also was overgrown with vines and weeds. The mortar seemed to crumble in places and small bunches of plants sprouted from the cracks. In a far corner, a faded white gazebo stood in a shroud of plant life with its grey wood roof shingles covered in moss. Atop at the peak, a wind vane shaped like a rooster pointed it’s scaly green arrow at the gate where the driveway entered. Beyond the gate and along the outside of the brick walls, heavy forest shut out the sun.
“Come on or we’re going to be late,” she called to him. “Mother wants to rebuild this place and has decided to rip out all of the sheetrock in the east wing to make sure the structure is sound.”
He followed her across the courtyard and through a set of double doors, back into the house. He had no idea where they were going or even where they were, but felt the need to continue following.
“This room is going to be the new family room,” she said, walking around a large wooden structure in the middle of the room.
Michael looked down and saw that there was no floor here but rather bare earth with a rough sandy texture. The floor was uneven as well with the outer edges raised where they walked and dipping down in the center under the wood framework. None of this made sense and as he looked at the large structure in the middle of the room, it looked to him like the skeleton of a large boat which had been either built here or unearthed as the building was erected around it. As he walked around the end and saw her moving toward the back, her mother entered through a set of French doors to his left followed closely by several children.
He did not recognize the children and heard her say something about rebuilding the house since her husband had died. In his mind, he knew this wasn’t right as his girlfriend’s mother had passed long before her father and they had lived in a very small house. None of this made any sense, but he suddenly felt an urgent need to talk with his girlfriend, if she would ever stop walking away from him.
“I need for you to talk to me,” he said pleading.
“We have plenty of time to talk. You’re not supposed to be at the prison until Thursday.” She smiled and continued to walk around the framework away from him.
“That’s not right,” he said. “I’m going to be gone before you even realize and I don’t know if I will ever be able to see you again.”
Michael heard the words he was speaking, but had no idea what he meant or why he felt it so urgently. One part of his mind knew that he had parted ways with her years before, but another part said he needed her to stay with him now because he was about to face something terrible and she was the only one who had ever understood him.
“Don’t be silly.” She smiled coyly. “I’ll always be here.”
She walked around the back of the framework and he went back the other way to intercept her. Coming face to face he put his hands on her shoulders and looked deep in to her eyes. It was strange, but he could not see the love he knew should be there. Instead he felt she was mocking him.
“I don’t know how I’m going to get through this,” he pleaded. “I have done everything I could, but nothing seems to work.”
“It’s all being taken care of,” she reassured him.
“What’s being taken care of?” he tried to ask, but the words would not come.
Suddenly Michael’s neck was sore and he couldn’t speak. She started to walk away from him again and when he tried to follow, he found he couldn’t move. In fact, he couldn’t even turn his head to see where she was going, but had to follow her with his eyes until she was out of sight. He tried to call to her, but no words came and he wondered what was happening.
“There. That should do it,” he heard her say.
“Doctor, we have rising activity on the EEG. The patient is waking up”
Michael tried to look and see who the doctor was and who was talking to him, but still could not move his head. He was stuck looking out of an old multi-paned wooden window at the overgrown garden.
“I got it,” she said and then everything went black.

Part 2
This story on YouTube narrated by myself
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Eternal Convictions / HeadGames
Steven Knies (c) October 23, 2009
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2023.03.22 00:52 Catvac-u-um_adnase Agriculture news March 16, 2023- All valley reservoirs dumping water * Neonic ban tests Newsom * Food giants weigh in on farm bill

All major Central Valley reservoirs are releasing water
The warm storms this week delivered rain up to 8,000 feet in elevation. That is sending an extraordinary amount of runoff into reservoirs. The inflow to Lake Shasta is topping 73,000 cubic feet-per-second, while Lake Oroville is receiving 63,000 cfs.
The American River, meanwhile, is nearly flowing unimpeded through Folsom Lake. Almost 40,000 cfs of water is rushing into the reservoir, while 27,000 cfs of floodwater is gushing out. Trinity Lake, which stubbornly remains at half its average supply, is seeing just 9,000 cfs of inflow.
Keep in mind: Agencies never fully fill reservoirs in winter to maintain space for flood control. But most of the major Central Valley reservoirs have filled beyond that flood protection point—and all are now releasing water.
Bauer-Kahan decries DPR’s pace and revives neonic ban
Asm. Rebecca Bauer-Kahan argued this week that Gov. Newsom has not followed through with a commitment to examine the backyard use of neonicotinoids.
The governor vetoed her bill last year to ban neonics for lawns and gardens. He reasoned the Department of Pesticide Regulation will begin evaluating nonagricultural uses this year. Bauer-Kahan renewed her bill “to ensure that the administration does as they promised.” She charged that DPR has yet to start the process based on her conversations with them and that bees are still dying.
Agriculture is taking a less combative approach this year. The bill would require DPR to reevaluate neonics and set new regulations. Taylor Roschen, lobbying for Western Plant Health and other associations, is hoping to amend that language so that DPR would only set new rules if the scientific review warrants them.
Despite the opposition, the committee once again approved the measure.
On EJ advisors: The same lawmakers approved a measure to establish an environmental justice advisory committee at DPR. Introducing his bill, committee chair Alex Lee of San Jose argued DPR does not adequately address racial and socioeconomic disparities from pesticide exposure.
California Farm Bureau’s Chris Reardon, who spent 13 years at DPR, countered that the department has been “actively incorporating environmental justice into its program for a long time.” He pointed out that DPR has created an EJ liaison and will soon hire a deputy director to oversee all EJ activities. Roschen added that the bill would add a layer of bureaucracy at a significant cost, when DPR’s budget is already structurally deficient.
Proponents responded that DPR’s proposal to overhaul the mill fee on pesticide sales would cover the cost. Bauer-Kahan asserted that just one liaison and one deputy director cannot represent all farmworkers statewide.
“I just am really confused why anyone would be afraid to bring voices to the table,” she said.
DHS needs to scale back fee proposal, senators say
A bipartisan group of senators led by Sen. Mike Rounds, R-S.D., and Joe Manchin, D-W.Va., is asking the Department of Homeland Security to rethink its plan to sharply increase fees employers must pay to bring workers in from outside the country.
A proposed rule from DHS would more than double the current $460 petition fee when applying for an H-2A or H-2B visa for a prospective guest worker, and impose a new $600 fee for screening and asylum work.
Food companies: Protect climate, conservation funds
Some of the largest multinational food companies are calling on lawmakers to maintain funding for conservation and climate priorities in the next farm bill.
In a letter going to the Senate and House Ag committees today, the Sustainable Food Policy Alliance says farm bill programs can help America’s farmers and ranchers address expanding markets and changing consumer needs while managing conditions such as drought and extreme weather. The alliance includes Danone North America, Mars Inc., Nestle USA and Unilever.
The letter notes that many conservation programs are already oversubscribed and that demand for funding is expected to grow. “In this spirit, we note that the climate crisis facing the food and agriculture supply chain is significant, and the funding must be proportional to the challenge,” the letter says.
Why it matters: Food companies have traditionally stayed out of farm bill debates other than those involving nutrition programs. The companies’ backing will help Senate Ag Chairwoman Debbie Stabenow’s defense of the Inflation Reduction Act funding for conservation programs.
Vilsack faces Senate Ag amid DOJ question
Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack is on Capitol Hill today to face questioning from the Senate Ag Committee.
Ahead of the hearing, two Republican members of the committee are raising concerns about Vilsack’s testimony to the committee last May, when he was asked whether the Justice Department had contacted USDA before taking a position in a Supreme Court case involving glyphosate herbicides. Vilsack told the committee his department wasn’t consulted, but DOJ has since told Sen. Roger Marshall, R-Kan., that DOJ did reach out to USDA.
In a letter to Vilsack this week, Marshall and Sen. Chuck Grassley, R-Iowa, told the secretary he “should be well aware that the longstanding practice of the DOJ is to solicit the views of other cabinet departments before taking a public position on a matter before the Supreme Court. … Your allegation that DOJ ignored the Agriculture Department before filing its brief in the Monsanto case stunned many in the agricultural community and led them to believe that USDA had been shunted aside.”
In a statement to Agri-Pulse, a spokesman for Vilsack said the department would “review the letter and respond accordingly. Secretary Vilsack looks forward to discussing USDA’s efforts to strengthen the agricultural economy, expand market opportunities, and support farmers and rural communities across the country” during today’s hearing.
Why it matters: DOJ took the position before the Supreme Court that the nation’s pesticide law doesn’t preempt state-law claims such as those that have resulted in multimillion-dollar judgments against Monsanto for Roundup exposure.
He said it:
“We’ve got to change the way the federal government scores these projects.” — Gov. Gavin Newsom, speaking in Pajaro while surveying flood damage.
He argued the Army Corps of Engineers needs to factor in societal impacts when gauging the importance of levee projects and was frustrated the town must wait up to five years to strengthen the breached levee, with just a temporary fix for now. The governor vowed to add more state dollars to bolster the local spending needed for federal matching grants.
Newsom added that no other state does more for farmworkers, but he stressed that “we don’t do enough.”
Jacqui Fatka, Bill Tomson and Steve Davies contributed to this report
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2023.03.22 00:36 Vathy 34 [M4F] #NYC - Still seeking a connection with someone who wants the same, conversation that slow burns is my jam, hoping that can be you

After a bit of a rough week and my search continuing, I'm throwing caution to the wind, keeping this shorter, and putting it out there clearly as to what I want, in hopes of finding a woman that actually wants to get off this cat and mouse searching just as much as I do.
I'll keep it short to start, but if you want a long version, feel free to read past this:
Short version: I'm a tall 34M living in NYC seeking a sub who wants a natural d/s dynamic IRL (preferably in NYC) who also wants a long term relationship. If you're passionate about exploring a dynamic with someone who knows exactly how he wants it to look like that is open to mixing it perfectly together with yours, I'm your guy.
Now for the long version...
Now, to tell you what I'm looking for!
I want a long term relationship with someone who enjoys the thought of a TPE dynamic (though I'm quite open on finding a perfect medium for us both) IRL (which means yes, living in NYC is ideal for me). I want someone who is open to a family long term down the road should we get that far, so yes, I want children. I want someone who is into all the kinks (ddlg, cgl, humiliation, degradation). I may be a soft dom, but boy do I have kinks.
But mostly importantly? I want someone who is available. These dynamics take time to grow into. If you can't be there to chat, please look elsewhere, honestly.
Other than a desire for a mutual attraction, I have a sole preference of having you be younger than me, if only because I've spent most of my relationships as the younger one, and I'd love to experience my age gap kink for once the way I prefer to enjoy it.
If this resonates with you, I'd love to have you reach out and see if we can click! I'd love to know what brought you to my post and what about it appeals to you. I implore you to take a look at the picture in my profile, and share one of yourself to me, as I'd like to make sure we're both happy with what we see first and foremost.
Hoping we can chat soon!
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2023.03.22 00:15 Top_Cartoonist676 U.S. Supreme Court weighs Coinbase arbitration dispute

U.S. Supreme Court weighs Coinbase arbitration dispute
The U.S. Supreme Court on Tuesday is set to hear a bid by cryptocurrency exchange Coinbase Global Inc to halt customer lawsuits, including by a user who sued after a scammer stole money from his account, as it pursues an effort to move the disputes out of courts and into private arbitration.
The justices are due to hear arguments in Coinbases appeal of lower court decisions letting the proposed class action lawsuits proceed while it presses its contention that the claims belong in arbitration. Companies generally prefer to arbitrate claims because the process is cheaper and faster than litigation in court, which can be harder to fight and carries a greater risk of hefty damages awards.
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2023.03.21 23:04 Initial_Tourist_8100 Small Claims Trial De Novo

Hello all, I live in the state of Utah. I had a small claims case where I am the plaintiff get appealed and move from district court to the justice court. I have completed mediation and have a trial set for late April. The trial issues are Unpaid Wages and Employee Mistreatment. I am writing this because I am wondering if it is unheard of to represent yourself in a small claims trial de novo. It is now in the justice court, so it becomes a lot more "real". Should I seek out a lawyer to be better prepared even though the amount is only 7k? To follow up, are texts and voice recordings considered valid evidence a majority of the time? Or is this more on a case by case basis. Most of my evidence is through text with my ex employer, so if that is not valid, it will make this case very hard to win.
Thank you all very much for your help!
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2023.03.21 22:35 YalsonKSA Hearing Robert talking in the latest Alfredo Stroessner episode about starting a coup with a bit of culture, I thought you might like to know that it has happened, and it wasn't bastards who did it.

What follows is the transcript of a piece I wrote for a (UK-based) radio show a couple of years ago, so apologies in advance for the slightly odd phrasing and the presumption of a certain level of knowledge of Eurovision Song Contest history.
Anyone who'd followed the build-up to the 1974 Eurovision Song Contest would have been forgiven for wondering if the entire event was losing its mind.
To begin with, the 1974 contest was held in Brighton in the UK, despite the fact Luxembourg had won the previous year. Normally the winner claimed the right to host the next pageant, but Luxembourg declined as 1973 was its second successive win and the cost of hosting Eurovision twice in a row were too much for the diminutive nation to bear.
Not to be outdone, the UK involved Australia in the contest 41 years before its official debut by choosing Olivia Newton-John as its representative. She courted further controversy by disagreeing with the entry the public voted for and stating afterwards that she'd wanted to sing something else.
This was after France pulled out of the competition at short notice, as it clashed with a memorial service for its former president Georges Pompidou, who'd died in office four days previously. Malta also withdrew, but mysteriously neglected to tell anybody why.
Greece competed for the first time in 1974, but did so under the worst possible conditions, sending a substitute performer after their original entry – rock group Nostradamus – were involved in a scandal involving a rape allegation related to a possible blackmail attempt.
Then the Italian state broadcaster refused to broadcast the competition for the most Italian reason possible: the country was in the middle of an intense referendum campaign over whether to legalise divorce. It was argued that the country's entry – entitled “Si” – could be construed as subliminal message to vote “yes” in the referendum. So although Italy still competed, the song was banned from Italian media.
Ultimately, Sweden triumphed with an entry called 'Waterloo'. The writers and performers of the song were a band called ABBA, who used it as a launchpad for a decade-long career in which they sold over 150 million albums and more or less conquered the world.
Amid these shenanigans, observers would have been forgiven for overlooking the Portuguese entry on the night. Most voters certainly did, meaning Paulo de Carvalho's Vegas-style ballad 'E Depois do Adeus' ended the night 14th and equal last alongside Germany and Switzerland, having received only 3 points.
However, certain extremely influential individuals were listening, meaning that Carvalho's song ultimately left a greater mark on history even than ABBA's.
At the time, Portugal was ruled by a brutal quasi-fascist dictatorship known as the Estado Novo, or “New State”. By the early 1970s, this regime was increasingly unpopular due to its oppressive policies and the immense human and financial costs of Portugal's ongoing colonial wars in its African and Asian colonies.
On April 24 1974, 19 days after Carvalho's Eurovision performance in Brighton, a radio station in Portugal's capital, Lisbon, played 'E Depois do Adeus' at 10:55pm. On this signal, an organisation of politically left-leaning Portuguese military officers known as the MFA launched a coup.
The MFA broadcast appealed for the public to stay indoors while it was taking place, but on hearing that someone was trying to overthrow the hated Estado Novo, thousands of civilians took to the streets armed with nothing but red carnations. They gave the flowers to the MFA troops, who wore them on their uniforms and placed them in their gun barrels.
The military coup became a popular movement. Within hours, the “Carnation Revolution” had deposed the Estado Novo with barely a shot fired.
'E Depois do Adeus' translates into English as “and after the farewell”. The following year, Portugal held its first democratic election in nearly half a century.
The song.
The show.
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2023.03.21 22:01 BamaLover4life Executive Positions at a potential combined WBD-NBCU company

So here’s the deal: I think that Frances Berwick who is currently the chairman of entertainment networks at NBCU (which includes NBC, Bravo, USA, SYFY, E!, Oxygen and Universal Kids) would add oversight of all of Warner Bros Discovery’s cable networks (including Discovery Channel, TLC, HGTV, Food Network, Science Channel, Travel Channel, Magnolia Network, Motor Trend, Investigation Discovery, OWN, TBS, TNT, TruTV, TCM, Cartoon Network, Adult Swim and Boomerang) with the exception of HBO and TCM which would be put under the purview of HBO head Casey Bloys who would become Chairman, CEO and Chief Content Officer for HBO, with Bloys reporting directly to CEO Jeff Shell. Sarah Aubrey who is HBO Max’s head of original content, would become co-Chief content officer of HBO, sharing the position with Bloys, whom she will report to. Aubrey would also serve as head of scripted content for peacock, reporting to Susan Rovner. This means she would become Chairman of US Networks for Discovery NBCU. Casey Bloys would stay on as head of HBO but would report to Mark Lazarus instead of Berwick. Cartoon Network President Michael Oulween would also add programming oversight of Universal Kids Temporarily until the channel shuts down. Oulween would also oversee kids and family content for peacock. Jason Sarlanis who oversees the T-Nets as well as HLN and Investigation Discovery and Howard Lee who oversees the D-Nets and TLC would leave the combined Company as their roles would be redundant. Sarlanis and Lee’s roles would be assumed by Berwick. Pola Changon, who oversees TCM, would report directly to Casey Bloys as the Channel would be put under the HBO group. WBD US Networks Chairman and CCO Kathleen Finch would also leave the company.
Susan Rovner who is the chairman of entertainment content for NBCU television and streaming would also add oversight for creative strategy for original entertainment for all of WBD’s cable networks (with the exception of HBO, which will be continued to be run by Casey Bloys and Cartoon Network, Boomerang and Adult swim, which will be continued to be led by Michael Ouwleen, as well as TCM, which will be continued to be led by Pola Changnon). She would also lead content for the combined HBO Max-Discovery+-Peacock streaming service (which would continue to have the peacock name). All of them would report to Mark Lazarus will be Chairman of Discovery NBCU television and streaming as would NBC News head Cesar conde. Rashida Jones is president of MSNBC would continue to report to Conde as would CNBC president KC Sullivan and Telemundo Chairman Beau Ferrari. Now here’s an interesting one. Corie Henson who is currently executive vp of entertainment unscripted content for NBCU Tv and streaming where she oversees reality programming for all NBCU’s of cable networks and streaming service Peacock, would also now oversee all unscripted content for the now former WBD Networks. In addition, Henson would also become President for the D-Nets, TLC, HGTV and Food Network with Henson overseeing all aspects of Discovery Channel, Travel Channel, Science Channel, Animal Planet, Investigation Discovery, HGTV, TLC and Food Network including programming and development alongside Susan Rovner in addition to her new role as EVP, unscripted content, Discovery NBCU taking some pressure off Berwick. Henson would also absorb Rod Aissa’s role of oversight for unscripted lifestyle and documentary programming in addition to her current role overseeing reality and talent completion and game show programming, meaning she would oversee all types of unscripted programming for the company. Aissa would leave the company as a result. So, Henson’s position would be, EVP, unscripted content, Discovery NBCU television and streaming, and president, D-Nets, TLC, HGTV, and Food Network, reporting to both Berwick and Rovner. Betsy Ayala and Loren Ruch, who oversee Food Network and HGTV respectively would stay on and report to Henson. For streaming JB Perrette, who serves as CEO of Global streaming and Games, would leave the company, and be replaced by NBCU direct to consumer and international chairman Matt Strauss who would also replace Gerhard Zeiler as international chief. Strauss’ new position would Chairman and CEO of streaming and international networks, Discovery NBCU, where he would oversee the non-Sky international networks reporting to both Mark Lazarus and Sky Group CEO Dana Strong. Kelly Campbell would stay on President of Streaming and Direct to Consumer for Discovery NBCU. Lisa Katz, who oversees scripted content for all NBCU’s broadcast and tv networks and the peacock streaming service, would also now oversee all scripted programming across all WBD cable networks (with the exception of HBO of course). Katie Hockmeyer, who oversees late night programming for NBC as EVP of Late night would now add oversight of all late-night programming across of the cable network portfolio as well as peacock, including Bravo and HBO, which include shows like Watch what happens live, Real time with Bill Maher and Last Week Tonight with John Oliver. Hockmeyer would report to both Frances Berwick and Casey Bloys. Jen Neal, EVP, Live Events, NBCUniversal Television & Streaming, would now oversee live events for all former WBD Networks (except HBO). Alex Wellen, Global President, and General Manager for Motor Trend Group would report to Casey Bloys as the entire Motor Trend group would also be put under the HBO Umbrella. So, Casey Bloys’ HBO unit would consist of HBO and its sister networks, TCM, Magnolia Network and Motor Trend. NBC Sports and WBD Sports would be merged into one company keeping the NBC Sports name with NBC Sports Chairman Pete Bevacqua becoming Chairman and CEO of Discovery NBCU Sports. All would report to Mark Lazarus who would be Chairman Networks and streaming at Discovery NBCU.
Warner Universal Pictures would be led by Donna Langley as Chairwoman, with Peter Cramer becoming chairman of Universal Studios, Michael De Luca and Pam Abdy becoming Co-CEOs of Warner Bros Entertainment, James Gunn and Peter Safran remaining as Co-CEOs of DC Studios, and Peter Kujawski continuing as chairman of focus features. Margie Cohn would stay on as president of DreamWorks Animation which will merge with Warner animation group and Chris Meledandri will stay on as CEO of Illumination. All would report to Langley.
Discovery NBCU content studios would be the television unit for the combined company. The division would keep the Warner Bros Television and Universal Television and Universal Content Productions names like how Disney keeps ABC Signature and 20th television names. The combined group would be led by Universal studio group chairman Pearlena Igbokwe with Universal Television president Erin Underhill, Warner Bros Television Group Chairwoman Channing Dungy and President Brett Paul and Universal Content production president Beatrice Springborn all reporting to Igbokwe. Warner Bros Domestic Television Distribution and NBCUniversal Syndication Studios would be merged to create Discovery NBCU syndication studios, which would serve as the broadcast and cable syndication and television distribution unit of Discovery NBCU studios. Tracie Wilson, who currently serves as Executive Vice President, NBCUniversal Syndication Studios & E! News, would become president of discovery NBCU syndication studios and E! News. The combined arm would have a variety of first run syndicated shows including Maury, Jerry Springer, Extra, Access Hollywood, the Steve Wilkos Show, Judge Mathis, the Ellen degeneres show, the Jennifer Hudson show, the people’s court, the Kelly Clarkson Show and more. It would also serve as the distributor of Off network syndication reruns of shows produced by Warner Bros TV and Universal TV including the law and order and Chicago franchises, The Big Bang Theory, Young Sheldon, Friends, The Office, Parks and Recreation, Smallville, The closer, Rizzoli and Isles, Full House, Dateline and more.
All these executives would report to Jeff Shell, who would become CEO of Discovery NBCU (the name of the combined company). Bonnie Hammer who is Bonnie Hammer who is currently vice chairman of NBC universal, would become President of Discovery NBCU. Warner Bros Discovery CFO Gunnar Wiedenfels, would continue in his role as CFO for Discovery NBCU. Chief Human Resources and Global Diversity Officer Adria Alpert Romm, Chief Accounting Officer Lori Locke, General Counsel Savelle Sims, Chief Technology Officer Avi Saxena, Chief Development, Distribution and Legal Officer Bruce Campbell, Chief Corporate Affairs Officer David Leavy, and Chief U.S. Advertising Sales Officer Jon Steinlauf, would all continue in their roles that they had from Warner Bros Discovery at Discovery NBCU with Steinlauf now reporting to Global Advertising and Partnerships Chairman, Linda Yaccarino. Matt Bond who is NBCUniversal’s Chairman of Content Distribution would now report to Campbell as would Matt Schnnars, President, Content Distribution. Jen Friedman, NBCU’S EVP of commuincations would now be Chief Commuincations Officer with Leavy reporting to her. NBCU EVP and Chief Diversity Officer Craig Robinson would stay on in his position with Alpert Romm reporting to him. Discovery NBCU would have its headquarters at 30 Rockefeller plaza at the comcast building in NYC. Shell would continue to report to Comcast CEO Brian Roberts.
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2023.03.21 21:44 Crystal-Blockchain Blockchain litigation lead, Matt Green, hosts the latest podcast series, 'In Early - The Crypto Podcast' - Listen to episode 8👇

Listen to episode 8:
Find out about Bitcoin and the Tulip Trading case (recently in the Court of Appeal), in which a claimant seeks to transfer his Bitcoin without a private key, looking for the blockchain's software developers to transfer them for him.
Nick Smart, our Director of Blockchain Intelligence, joins Matt in this episode, giving his thoughts on the claim from a technical perspective and considering what could happen if the Claimant were to win.
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2023.03.21 21:42 FishCoughItsTrue Potential educational resource for civics and government

Submission statement:
(Trying again in hopefully the correct sub) Hello, obviously the moderators will not post if this is not allowed, but I'm hopeful they will allow it. I wanted to share the following free resource related to teaching about government and civics. I'm part of a 501(c)(3) educational organization dedicated to promoting constructive dialogue and creative thinking about complex, sometimes contentious subjects. But, in this case, we're just trying to help folks understand the roles and responsibilities of perhaps lesser known elected and appointed officials. We do not make money on this. It is part of our work for the public good.
We know what the president’s “job” is, right? Maybe our governors and mayors, too. But how about judges of all stripes, medical examiners, commissioners of education or transportation, and so on?
IN THEIR WORDS: What public officials do for us, a new CITIZENARTS podcast series, presents federal, state and local “public servants” whose work is often little understood or thought about but has an immediate, direct impact on our daily lives.
We kick off the series with a candid, informative, sometimes provocative conversation with Secretary of State Steve Hobbs of Washington state. Secretary Hobbs gives us a civics lesson in the scope of his roles and responsibilities, from helping ensure election integrity by controlling misinformation, heading off cybersecurity breaches, protecting freedom of speech in libraries, to issuing credentials for corporations and charitable organizations. Critically important, multi-functional public services – the apt bailiwick for Steve Hobbs, a self-described “extreme centrist.”
Upcoming episodes feature a court of appeals justice, a district attorney, the secretary of transportation of New England state, a country executive and many more.
IN THEIR WORDS can be found at, or wherever you get your podcasts.
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2023.03.21 21:35 uscvball Stanford law students were opposed to Duncan over a convicted pedophile

Had no idea this was the nexus.

"Norman Keith Varner, 42, who failed in her bid to change her name to Kathrine Nicole Jett, 42, on court records. Varner has twice been convicted of possessing child pornography and failing to register as a sex offender.
In 2012 Varner pleaded guilty to one count of attempted receipt of child pornography and was sentenced to 15 years in prison which will be followed by 15 years supervised release.
By 2015, while in prison, Varner came out as a transgender woman and began 'hormone replacement therapy' shortly after trying to change her surname to Jett in Kentucky.
However, the US Court of Appeals rejected Varner's appeal to change her conviction records to her new name. Fifth Circuit Judge Stuart Duncan and others ruling it as 'meritless' because the pedophile was known as Norman Varner at the time she committed the child sex abuse offenses.
Varner was previously convicted of child exploitation and possession charges in 2005 but was handed an 18-month suspended sentence by an Indiana court.
She was then arrested in 2010 for failing to register as a sex offender, as well as several appearances in court and a suspended sentence for fraud offenses and bad checks in the late 1990s.
Court documents obtained by show that between April 2010 and June 2010 Varner tried to receive child porn on a Compaq computer.
The pedophile possessed a video which was nearly two minutes long showing a 'prepubescent female' and a 'nude minor male'."

I wish I could say I was shocked.
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2023.03.21 21:23 throwawaylurker012 Everything Everywhere All At Once: The Citadel Big 3 and how Citadel’s sphere of influence has its fingers stuck not just in the stock market, but the municipal/bond market and sovereign debt/sovereign debt credit default swaps to dangerous degree

Everything Everywhere All At Once: The Citadel Big 3 and how Citadel’s sphere of influence has its fingers stuck not just in the stock market, but the municipal/bond market and sovereign debt/sovereign debt credit default swaps to dangerous degree
TL;DR: Citadel doesn't just have a major outsized influence in the US stock market via its market making firm/hedge fund, but also a major indirect influence via Headlands (biggest municipal bond trading firm made of 3 ex-Citadel employees), and direct influence on sovereign debt (can decide when sovereign credit default swaps pay out) with its seat on the CDDC (Credit Derivatives Determinations Committee).

Hi y’all. Been some while since have been able to post regularly here, so I’m returning alongside my recent post on FHLB with a bit of a “DD". Partial rush job, so all errors are mine and mine alone (obviously)

0. Sphere of Influence

Over the past 84 years (/s), you lovely apes at Superstonk have been able to fish out many of the finer points of corruption crystallized into pure, unadulterated financial terrorism and financial terrorist-level crime undertaken by Steve Cohen (Point 72), Jeff Yass (Susquehanna), Doug Cifu & Vincent Viola (Virtu), as well as Wolverine Trading, Jane Street, TwoSigma, and more. But, of course, much of it has centered on our Mayo-artist-in-residence and his firm, that of none other but Ken Griffin and Citadel.
One of the biggest finds that has come to light has been the complete and utter bullshit of having (1) a hedge fund and (2) owning a market making firm that most DEFINITELY does not use that non-public information to its benefit? I mean, it would be easy for us to check except that we need 5 swipes to even access that level of inner sanctum at Citadel, which–per DLauer’s words–is more than the fucking Pentagon.
But despite Ken Griffin’s reach into every aspect of the most influential stock market in the world, that is not his ONLY level of his sphere of influence. For we, dear apes, can step back and revisit this idea that Citadel’s power duo (its market making firm and hedge fund) is more like a single part of a Big 3.

1. Meet the Big 3

Citadel’s sphere of influence includes not JUST (1) the stock market business, but directly or indirectly, the (2) U.S. municipal and bond markets, plus (3) the sovereign debt/sovereign debt credit default swap markets.

Yes, you heard that right. Citadel not only has some sufficient level of influence to tank your favorite stock–and, in turn–retirement fund, but can also effectively drive your city into the fucking ground, or even your country.

I’ve written about each of these at length, and wanted to revisit some pieces in the wake of our recent dick twitchings of the coming financial crash.

2. Meet the Municipal Bond Market

Citadel has an indirect grip tickling the taint of the municipal bond market, believe it or not. I first wrote about the municipal bond market here (“Headlands: How ex-Mayo mercenaries copy pasted Citadel’s model in the muni bond market”): For those unfamiliar with municipal bonds, I’ll reiterate what they are and why many push them as a safe investment in most times (with some caution being thrown intermittently due to the collapse of regional banks like FRC and Silicon Valley Bank):

“Municipal bonds (or "munis" for short) help towns/cities raise money for projects like building schools, parks, and fixing highways. Many retail investors--admittedly, on the wealthier side--invest in munis for tax incentives like not paying federal tax on bond returns. In certain cases, certain muni buys also mean no state taxes are paid…Just like what had happened to stocks, the old-school market for buying and selling muni bonds is going electronic. This is mainly done through an ATS, or "alternative trading system" known also as a dark pool. This speeds up the process of buying and selling munis, making it closer to a "house auction".
In the wake of the SVB (Silicon Valley Bank), there have already been rumblings of its effect on the municipal bond market (Bloomberg “Bank Woes Create Bond Bargain in Obscure Corner of Muni Market”):

“Investor concerns over the crises within the financial industry are bleeding into a corner of the $4 trillion municipal-bond market where major investment banks guarantee energy for public utilities….
Spreads have widened on so-called prepaid gas bonds, which government agencies use to purchase long-term supplies of natural gas. Large institutional banks act as facilitators of the transactions, guaranteeing the supply and providing investors tax-exempt exposure to bank credit….

3. San Jose, Revisited

That part about “large institutional banks” acting as facilitators of the transactions is what we saw in part in this post by [redacted].
A commenter spoke about this, and how it wasn’t Wells Fargo in doo doo but the city of San Jose.

“I believe in theses cases it’s not Wells Fargo that has a problem but the city of San José.

„Because presentments are currently processed automatically at DTC, IPAs have the option to refuse to pay (“RTP”) for maturing MMI Obligations to protect against the possibility that an IPA may not be able to fund settlement because it has not received funds from the relevant issuer. „ -> Wells Fargo didn’t receive the money from San José city.
Wells Fargo acts as an issuing agent for the city - the city transfers assets to the trustee and the trustee securitizes the assets and offers the money market securities to investors. The assets generate money (for example a sports arena that was build) and that money goes through the city of San José to the trustee who is managed by Wells Fargo.
Wells Fargo has no liability or influence on the money that comes from the city and is distributed to the investors. If the money doesn’t come or isn’t sufficient, the assets are sold or liquidated and used to pay investors.
Anyway: Wells Fargo acts on behalf of the city and is not responsible they just handle securitization but don’t have any influence on payments or failure/default.”

In this case, we might be seeing one of the first of MANY issues of cities up shit’s creek over this.

4. The Municipal Bond Market Time Bomb

The size of the municipal market is A SHIT TON BIGGER than the corporate bond market, which will already show even more signs of being turbo fucked due to borrowing at low interest rates for years. Here’s the size of the municipal bond market for scale, sans banana:
Unfortunately, just like retirement funds, many muni investors are “buy and hold”: they buy a muni expecting a safe, long-term return with no federal income tax and then, welp, shit hits the fan. The market is heavily illiquid too, meaning if shit needs to move, then you might be fucked. Only about 1% of municipal securities trade any given day, in auctions that often take HOURS:

“Now, the primary method of trading on this doesn't look like the New York Stock Exchange or like Nasdaq. It looks like an auction. It takes about 4 hours. An auction is initiated. Participants who come in can bid on this, and it is a competitive auction that yields a very good price.”

Now to my understanding you can’t short these bonds, but the long time frame means its hard to sell these illiquid assets. Not only that, THERE IS NO NATIONAL NBBO (National Best Bid Offer)’re flying blind while this shit happens.

Now if you’re wondering what magnanimous souls are helping municipal bonds be sold or fixed in a timely manner for cities like San Jose, well have I got news for you.

5. Meet Headlands, U.S. Municipal/Bond Market Making Firm…Run by 3 Ex-Citadel Employees

Two months after the sneeze (March 2021), TD Ameritrade bought municipal bond market maker Headlands. Yes, that’s right…an electronic market maker just like Citadel, this time for bonds for cities and towns vs. stocks. Now let’s check the fine fellows that run this:
  • Jason Lehman: Citadel Investment Group, began/ran their global options market making, dipped his dick in Japanese convertible bonds, and managed “Private Investments”
  • Neil Fitzpatrick: Citadel Execution Services COO (Citadel Investment affiliate), ran equities/options. Ex-Knight Capital Group, did Citadel’s OTC and equity shit. Direct Edge board of directors.
  • Matthew Andresen, co-CEO Citadel Derivatives (Citadel Investment affiliate). Previously served on board of directors/committees in the past from International Securities Exchange, Direct Edge, CFTC, Lava Trading (Citi’s electronic trading unit that made LavaFlow)

Of note, Matthew Andresen founded Island, one of the 1st dark pools EVER and 2nd only to “Instinet” (who also got an even bigger wave of funds during the sneeze, info courtesy of Ringing Bells) and was featured heavily in the Scott Patterson book “Dark Pools”.
Ol Matty told us that Headlands is completely automated, and where some muni traders make 75-100 muni bond sales a day (sometimes over the phone), Headlands currently bids on 10,000+ bond auctions a day with its algo. Matty Boi even said if that number ever 10x’d “we wouldn’t notice.” Even more sus, Headlands has been growing its own “holdings” of muni bonds on its books.

6. In Bros We Trust

So remember, this branch of 3 ex-Citadel bros is front and center to the issues already rearing their head. In my previous post, these were just SOME of the already teetering municipal bond issues:

  • Some might have history befall them again: last time the market crashed, Michael Burry’s California went spiraling down to BBB rated for many municipal bonds. California is a special muni case where it generally does well when times are good; much of their revenue is tied to personal income taxes. But when shit goes tits up, it goes tits up.
  • Major projects have tons of debt piling up due to the [March 2020 crash] New Jersey built a giant ass mall–I kid you not--called “The American Dream” over 10+ years that has no sales receipts to cover it in part due to the dropoff in retail buying. As of 2 weeks ago, the mall only had like less than $1000 in the bank to pay off muni debt (“Developer Triple Five Group also sold US$800 million of muni-debt backed by payments they agreed to make to bondholders instead of paying property taxes”)...
  • NYC’s MTA has been getting reamed by both ends. One of the biggest shitstains on its books is that it took out a shit ton of municipal debt and opted to sell $3 billion in bonds to the Fed’s muni lending program to stay afloat
And this issues extends way beyond the U.S.' 50 even affects our territories too.

7. Hurricane

What began this rabbit hole was the one and only welp 0 0 7, who caught wind of some fuckery in the municipal bond market:

In the post, he mentioned how "American Thinker" 's Joseph Lawler mentioned the SEC has been giving fucking STIFF Heismans nonstop (or per [redacted] the ol' Dustin Martin "don't argues" for you Aussie apes!) on FOIA requests (Freedom of Information Act) related to the municipal bond default in Puerto Rico, the BIGGEST bond default in America's history EVER.
It went all the way the way up to a federal court in California where the SEC said "we don't know what you're talking about" when others found they have fucking 2800 pages of documents on it and nearly 270,000(!) emails referencing it referencing a billion dollar Ponzi scheme on the level of fucking Bernie Madoff.
Big banks (Citi, Wells Fargo, BoFa) had their scheme collapse in 2016, potentially bribed senators to kill investigations into it by the DOJ and now the SEC is caught in yet ANOTHER 2 lawsuits saying they fucking aided and abetted this shit.
You see, because this level of municipal bond includes fuckery includes not just cities and towns, but U.S. TERRITORIES. In my post about Hurricane Maria’s effect on Puerto Rico, I talked about how UBS and others loaded up Puerto Rico with debt because of what’s called a “Treasury Put” guarantee that was even called “an exit strategy” for banks (“They describe the "treasury put" as "...the implicit guarantee -- as perceived by investors -- from a government agency to provide support in the event of financial distress by the issuer of Puerto Rican bonds."”).
Puerto Rico’s default was the largest in US history, EVER. And all this the same while guess who was holding the bag? Let’s see what W S O P tells us:

“The reality is that a large percentage of Puerto Rico’s debt is held in tax-free municipal bonds and municipal bond mutual funds, owned not by Wall Street banks or tycoons, but by mom and pop investors seeking tax-free income.”
So once again, whether its retirement funds or municipal bonds, its retail caught holding the bag. And this hasn't changed for years. We’ve seen similar fuckery with bonds for NYC in the 70s, and more recently in the 00s for Detroit.

One astute wrinkle by the name of [redacted] posted this on that original post trying to dig into how it could all be related:

…how the MMLF fund that expanded money/credit to towns/cities started including commercial paper…but also leveraged near the 15 to 1 ratio perhaps under the Net Capital Requirement limit:
[redacted said]: "$500B at 14:1 Leverage? If I'm making the right connection between the flavor of asset, that's just under the 15x Net Capital Requirement limit. Is this all the Fed had/could afford? Or is this all they needed at the time?

8. Don't Bet Against America...Says the Banks and Hedge Funds That Already Did

Commercial Paper? Municipals related? Now where does that sound familiar? Ah, yes…the city of San Jose got its call-out by Wells Fargo over COMMERCIAL PAPER. This comes as the push for ppl into municipal bond markets continues, trying to sell it as a “safe haven” to retail investors. Vanguard just recently launched its first ETF–surprise, its first US-listed ETF in 2 years– for municipal bonds (selling point: “hey everyone it’s tax-exempt! Give us money plz!”) for example:

Many of us can see all of it for what it is. Bullshit. In the wake of the SVB collapse, there is still a strong push that these regional banks–many of which lend to municipalities–will be fine. This “safe haven” theory continues, even as articles try to have them appeal abroad (such as a few days ago, “ ESG Factors of Munis May Attract Non-US Investors” “”)
Even further, one last find is that . I mean it’s not like credit default swaps can be taken on cities and towns in theory right?

FWIW also I found an interesting research paper talking about hedge funds buying up credit default swaps, and how they could potentially bankrupt towns/municipalities through some of these moves if they wanted:
"Another potential concern is that even in a market that is generally liquid, the market for individual single-name [Credit default swap]s may be quite small, which could allow a single bad actor (a hedge fund, for example) to force a municipality into default..."


This is all while we have 3 ex-Citadel heads in charge of just how the municipal bond market moves, like that of San Jose.
So is this where Citadel’s reach stops? Clearly, no. It doesn’t stop at the US border, just like how Mayo Force One doesn’t.

10. ELI5: What’s a Soverign Credit Default Swap?
That’s right, mofos. You read that sub-header right. In case you’re wondering, not only can you take out credit default swaps on a failing Swiss bank like CS, but you can do so ON ENTIRE FUCKING COUNTRIES.
In one of my old posts “Sovereign Debts & Ransom Notes: Pt. 1 The Importance of Being Non-Linearly Destabilized through Sovereign Credit Default Swaps”
(“”), I talked a little more about the insanity of these things even existing.

Sovereign credit default swaps exist. Long story short: sovereign credit default swaps are insurance policies that if a country defaults (usually on its debt)then you get paid! Like many other shit that we’ve seen in the GME saga, they are a form of financial derivative (a bet that something goes up, a bet that something goes down) on an underlying (the thing you’re betting on)....They can be used to insure government debt for a country in case that country is unable to pay its debt, for example. However, just like other instruments, naked sovereign credit default swaps also exist.

Naked sovereign credit default swaps are used to bet that a country or a country's debt will fail without you owning that country's debt. In part, they were destabilising during the Euro-crisis immediately after the 2008 financial crash. Greece was one of the countries that got naked shorted in 2008. In fact, the country got shorted so bad they were worried about fucking SHORT SQUEEZES on Greek debt and the sovereign CDSs!
In 2012, the EU put a ban on naked sovereign credit default swaps. However, workarounds include the fact that a country can effectively change its mind on it within 24 hours and all the regulatory agency can do is offer an opinion.

There were a tons of perhaps “we will see soon” if relevant additional points in that old research, including:

  • The VIX affects sovereign credit default swaps A LOT
  • The Big Bang Protocol: ISDA helped formulate a set of rules that decides when a country “defaults”
  • You can “short” a sovereign bond if you find a locate (sound familiar?: “Short sales of shares and short sales of sovereign debt will be permitted only where the seller has “located” the share or debt instrument prior to entering into the agreement and has a “reasonable expectation” of being able to borrow the shares.”)

Crazy shit. So you might say, now this post is meant to be about Citadel’s sphere of influence you might say? “Where does Citadel fit into all this? ”

11. Meet the CDDC (Credit Derivatives Determination Committee)...Where Citadel Sit and Helps Decide Which Countries Default on their Debt

One of the biggest GFC 2008 scenarios of sovereign credit default swaps being misused was against Greece. Afterwards, one of its biggest cases of misuse was by Elliot Management (ran by Paul Singer) who was using their position on the Credit Derivatives Determination Committee, or CDDC, to help decide when their sovereign credit default swaps against Argentina would pay out.
Wait, Eliot Management doesn’t sound big enough. Who else is on this committee?
Oh wait, so Citadel is ALSO on this committee? Alongside our favorite fucksticks like Chase, Goldman, Deutsche, and BNP?

It’s not lost on me with seeing now that Credit Suisse has been sucked up into UBS, maybe its position on the CDDC has been absorbed further by UBS. Back then, I wrote about the fact is we know next to nothing about the sovereign credit default swaps that might be opened up against countries (be it Russia, Sri Lanka, or otherwise):
Here's one such example of a swap dealer: Swiss financial terrorist aficionados UBS AG, who registered to be a swaps dealer with the US at the end of 2012. (UBS had also been a member of the CDDC through the Greek crisis in early 2012, alongside Citadel. In Mar. 2012, they were also one of the members pressing to ask whether Greece had defaulted already.)
UBS AG registered as a swap dealer in the US at the end of 2012 enabling the continuation of swaps business with US persons. Regulations issued by the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) impose substantial new requirements on registered swap dealers for clearing, trade execution, transaction reporting, recordkeeping, risk management and business conduct.
If UBS AG decides to make a market on sovereign credit default swaps like Russia, then we might also have no idea who is on the other side of the trade. This also goes for many of the other swap dealers who (surprise surprise) also sit on the CDDC board and can determine just when these sovereign credit default swaps pay out.

Not only that, but the CDDC even can say when CORPORATE BONDS even shit the bed: late last year, they were the ones who were deciding to let everyone know whether Sunac (an Evergrande-relate company) went tits up.

12. We Say When

For months, there has been talk of a looming debt crisis (alongside all the other ones) in the sovereign debt world.
And shit continues to hit the proverbial fan. Apart from Russia, Sri Lanka and others, emerging markets like Ghana and Zambia are beginning to feel the hits from their sovereign debt (oftentimes, trying to restructure it with creditors like China).

Even further, now that Credit Suisse has gone under. We may have another thing to worry about: what banks and prime brokers are housing these opaque sovereign debt structures, loans, and swaps? Even worse, what happens when they go under? Roll that less than beautiful bean footage:

“Before collapse, Credit Suisse quietly conquered an obscure debt market
Before its rescue by Swiss rival UBS, Credit Suisse had quietly become a major player in an obscure market that purports to help developing countries ease their debt burdens in exchange for protecting nature. Known as debt-for-nature swaps, the complex financial instruments help governments restructure their debt to raise money that can be used to fund conservation efforts.

Credit Suisse was the sole structurer and arranger of the world’s largest debt-for-nature swap, a $364 million deal that it orchestrated in 2021 along with The Nature Conservancy, a charity, for Belize. Last year, it sealed another $150 million deal for Barbados. Credit Suisse has in recent years helped revive interest in the instruments and for the first time opened them up to institutional capital. The bank raised money for Belize and Barbados from pension funds including Sweden’s Alecta and Nuveen LLC, a unit of the US’s TIAA, by issuing so-called blue bonds tied to the deals.
he convoluted setup has drawn criticism from sovereign debt experts for its high cost and lack of transparency. And the opaque terms of the Belize and Barbados deals — the first of their kind — mean outside analysts will struggle to assess precisely what comes next.

A lot of poorer, especially emerging market countries were already in dire straits. Now as opaque deals meant to help these countries might not come to light (are these some of the Level 3 assets that UBS was talking about?), we can ask ourselves wtf will happen when the same banks looking to save their own ass while holding these sovereign, are the same fuckers that sit on the same board that can decide when they are worthless (while I’m sure being positioned net short).

All in all, these banks and holders of sovereign debt credit default swaps, who decide when a country goes boom, are sitting arm in arm alongside Citadel, who themselves potentially hover their greasy mayo-covered finger over the button that decides just when and how the US stock market will eventually implode.

13. Everything Everywhere All at Once

To recap, we then have Citadel with (1) the biggest market maker and arguably one of the most influential hedge fund able to decide which stocks rise and which fall as the US stock market teeters on the brink of collapse…
…with having (2) three of its ex-employees in charge of (not even counting other Citadel employees working there) operating at Headlands ready to help position themselves when the municipal bond market gets nuked, whether as a continued result of regional bank failure or in spite of it…
…while (3) sitting on the board that determines when ENTIRE COUNTRIES FAIL, in such a way that their hedge fund and associated pals can be ready to short and profit off failing nations that they and their fuckstick friends help cause.
Did I miss anything? Because remember, Citadel is not just Citadel, the market-maker that we all love to hate; Citadel’s sphere of influence via the Big 3 means the grip that it holds over the US and world economy is even greater than we think…and as such, far far more dangerous.
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2023.03.21 21:16 iksnet [Fedor] No one inside the Cavs organization would say this publicly — and they shouldn’t. But multiple people I’ve spoken to recently are privately hoping for a Brooklyn matchup.

Hey, Chris: Which opponent is Cleveland’s most favorable matchup in a first-round playoff series? — Rick, North Royalton
Hey, Rick: No one inside the organization would say this publicly — and they shouldn’t. But multiple people I’ve spoken to recently are privately hoping for a Brooklyn matchup. It’s easy to understand why. Even though the Cavs, with home-court advantage, would likely be capable of competing — and possibly winning — a seven-game series against any of the teams currently behind them in the standings, the Nets would be Cleveland’s easiest path out of round one.
Claxton responds:
“I heard something like that, too. I don’t know if they think it’s sweet, but we’ll match up with anybody. We just try to take it game by game, win as many games as we can and get as high a seed as possible. If that’s our matchup, then we’ll take care of it.”
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2023.03.21 20:41 Catvac-u-um_adnase A Texas federal judge has blocked the Biden administration’s “waters of the U.S.” rule from taking effect in his state and in Idaho.

In a ruling Sunday, U.S. District Judge Jeffrey Vincent Brown declined to issue a nationwide injunction sought by 18 associations but said the rule, due to go into effect Monday, raises constitutional questions that warrant enjoining its implementation in the two states.
The EPA and Army Corps of Engineers’ “effort to read navigability out of the (Clean Water Act)’s text to permit categorical encroachment on states’ rights raises constitutional questions this court should — if any other reasonable interpretation of the Act exists — avoid,” Brown said in his opinion.
The judge also said the Biden rule “is unlikely to withstand judicial review” because its version of the “significant nexus” test is “materially different from the standard” articulated by Justice Anthony Kennedy in the Supreme Court’s 2006 Rapanos decision.
“The agencies’ construction of the significant-nexus test ebbs beyond the already uncertain boundaries Justice Kennedy established for it,” Brown said. “Specifically, by extending the significant-nexus test to ‘interstate waters,’ and not just to those ‘waters . . . understood as ‘navigable,’ the rule disregards the Act’s ‘central requirement’ — ‘the word ‘navigable.’ ”
“The agencies’ interpretation of the act to include all interstate waters irrespective of any limiting principle raises serious federalism questions,” he also said.
Ruling on another requirement for an injunction, Brown said Texas and Idaho “have already shown irreparable harm because they will expend unrecoverable resources – monetary and otherwise – complying with a rule unlikely to withstand judicial scrutiny.”
The American Farm Bureau Federation applauded the ruling. “AFBF is pleased the district court ordered EPA and the U.S. Army Corps to halt implementation of the troubled 2023 WOTUS rule in Texas and Idaho,” AFBF President Zippy Duvall said. “The judge recognized the new rule likely oversteps EPA’s authority under the Clean Water Act, which creates uncertainty for the farmers and ranchers who must navigate the complicated regulations.”
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2023.03.21 20:35 BlankVerse California appeals court reverses most of ruling deeming Prop. 22 invalid

California appeals court reverses most of ruling deeming Prop. 22 invalid submitted by BlankVerse to California [link] [comments]