Erectile dysfunction is an Act of God

Yes, I know it’s preposterous.

That doesn’t mean we shouldn’t play it for all it’s worth, including claiming that medications that temporarily fix erectile dysfunction – because it’s an Act of God – spawn devil babies, and that convicted rapists that claim custodial rights to the product of their crimes must be made to prove in court that they hadn’t used any artificial means of achieving an erection, ever.

The seldom-right religious right is going all out on restricting women’s rights.

It’s time to fight crazy with crazy.

Y’all in?

Then say it with me, sisters: erectile dysfunction is an Act of God.

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@FL_corrections: either doesn’t know or doesn’t care that seizures end lives

Offender Picture

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

DOC scrubs testimony from prison whistle-blower for allegedly violating HIPAA | Naked Politics

Doug Glisson, an inspector with the DOC’s Office of Inspector General, testified under oath at the March 10 meeting of the Senate Criminal Justice Committee that the agency covered up potentially negligent medical care, criminal activity and sabotaged investigations to protect high ranking officials within the organization.

Among the examples Glisson cited was the case of inmate Quintin Foust, whose death was listed as “suspicious” by the medical examiner. Glisson said Foust was “undergoing medical care” at Jefferson Correctional Institution but did not provide any details about his medical condition or ailments. He said Foust “started having seizures” and “wound up dying.”

via DOC scrubs testimony from prison whistle-blower for allegedly violating HIPAA | Naked Politics.

——————————————–

There is a great deal to be upset about in the remainder of the Miami Herald article about Florida’s deadly prisons, but as I’m being stonewalled by the Florida Department of Corrections on their ongoing failure to protect incarcerated innocent Gary Bennett – who has epilepsy – the above two paragraphs hit me hard, and not just because I have epilepsy, too.

I’ve been an advocate for Veterans since the Vietnam war, and there is a virtual epidemic of Vets returning from conflict with Traumatic Brain Injury that gave them epilepsy, and often PTSD … any brain injury that is sufficient to alter your brainwaves is certainly sufficient to cause emotional trauma.

These Vets are getting arrested and convicted for displaying symptoms of epilepsy and/or PTSD, and a prison sentence is not how to say, “Thank you for your service.”

PTSD is a treatable mental illness; it shouldn’t be criminalized.

Neither should epilepsy. Seizures can take bizarre forms – disrobing in public, walking in circles, making random pushing motions, staring blankly into space, talking nonsense, and more. No matter how offensive seizures look or sound, they never become crimes.

Governor Rick Scott isn’t enforcing current laws. It isn’t legal for corrections officers to kill an inmate by use of force, or by negligence. It therefore falls to Florida lawmakers to set aside their contentious attempts at legislating reform of our prisons, and author a veto-proof bill that will make recall or impeachment of lawless governors constitutional. Right now.

Quintin Foust was 5’11” and weighed 126 pounds. In the picture above, he looks more like a Holocaust victim than a Florida inmate.

It’s possible that I’ve seen him around a time or two, but can’t place his face due to his emaciation … he was arrested here in St. Lucie County.

Foust’s five-year sentence would have been been completed in August.

 

 

 

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Reprieve to @BarackObama re third round of “clearing” Shaker Aamer for release from Guantánamo

Reprieve: +1 917 855 8064

For immediate release: Fri April 24, 2015

Delays in Guantánamo releases: Reprieve comment

In response to the news that twice-cleared Guantánamo prisoner Shaker Aamer must be reviewed yet again, delaying his release, Alka Pradham, Reprieve U.S. attorney for Shaker Aamer, said:

“The news of yet another pointless review of Shaker Aamer’s file is stunning; a ridiculous waste of time and resources.
 
“The United States has already cleared Shaker for release not once, but twice – under both the Obama and the Bush administrations. The gruelling clearance process involves unanimous agreement by six federal agencies, from the Department of Justice to the Office of the Director of National Intelligence.
 
“If President Obama wants Guantánamo closed, he must fix this bureaucratic dysfunction and stop the senseless stalling.

“Shaker has suffered 13 years of the most terrible abuses, without a single charge or any trial, and must be returned home to London and his British wife and children immediately. Any further delay in his release is unconscionable.”

ENDS

Notes to editors

1. The news of further review and delay for Shaker and others is here:
http://www.miamiherald.com/news/nation-world/world/americas/guantanamo/article19346010.html

2. For further information, please contact Reprieve’s US press office: +1 917 855 8064/ katherine.oshea@reprieve.org

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Knowingly innocent inmate Gary Bennett beaten by same man again, with @FL_corrections apparent approval

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I’ve previously written to the Florida Department of Corrections regarding medical neglect as well guard and inmate abuse of knowingly incarcerated innocent Gary Bennett; here is one of the email trails I posted to this blog. Here is another post that addresses Gary’s obvious innocence.

If Florida lawmakers were serious about prison reform, they would be drafting veto-proof legislation to enact an impeachment or recall process for governors that help corrections employees get away with abuse, neglect and even murder. But the lawmakers instead seem to be playing a new game on prison reform and other issues – good cop/bad cop – with the (R) house taking one stand and the (R) senate taking an opposing stand on multiple issues, which Texas’ (R) house and (R) senate seem to be doing, too.

Please share this post … we can stop taxation without representation and all the oppressive, expensive and often deadly harm that results from it, if we stand up to it.

From: Susan Chandler
Date: April 22, 2015 6:41:23 PM EDT
To: publicaffairs@mail.dc.state.fl.us
Cc: jones.julie@mail.dc.state.fl.us, Governor Rick Scott <Rick.Scott@eog.myflorida.com>
Subject: 24 hours have passed: repeating requests re known incarcerated innocent Gary Bennett #092481 being beaten by same inmate again

Please note: I have taken the liberty of correcting an error of omission in my closing paragraph.

From: Susan Chandler
Date: April 21, 2015 6:34:14 PM EDT
To: publicaffairs@mail.dc.state.fl.us
Cc: jones.julie@mail.dc.state.fl.us, Governor Rick Scott <Rick.Scott@eog.myflorida.com>
Subject: Known incarcerated innocent Gary Bennett #092481 beaten by same inmate again: denied right to file complaint; denied access to care

Please direct to the attention of McKinley Lewis, Director, Office of Communications, Florida Department of Corrections
It is my understanding that electronic correspondence becomes part of the public record

Dear Mr. Lewis,

I am writing to ask that you rapidly approach the appropriate Florida DoC personnel and make sure that Gary Stanley Bennett, Jr. is allowed to unconditionally file a grievance against the inmate who recently beat him (again), and be given immediate access to actual medical and dental care, not just ibuprofen.

For over 31 years, Floridians have paid to be kept safe from Gary while letting public servants continually abuse him, while Helen Nardi’s actual murderers remain free. This fact is known not only to Rick Scott, but to Florida governors dating back to at least Bob Graham, as well the Department of Justice, the FBI, the Senate Intelligence Oversight Committee, the American and Florida Bar associations, the mainstream media, and various innocence organizations.

Many of the very same malicious police, prosecutors, public defenders, judges and justices that either helped framed Gary or are laboring to keep his frame-up intact also participated in the frame-ups of other innocents railroaded in exactly the same manner: among those exonerated are Juan Ramos, Wilton Dedge and William Dillon; among the executed are Linroy Bottoson and Gerald Stano. There are other identical railroads that remain intact, some aren’t in Florida.

There is a great deal of peripheral corruption related to the Florida frame-ups, and it has devastated the lives of those who have never been charged with a crime, even ending some lives. I became involved in these wrongful convictions by finding out that the judge named John Dean Moxley that was mishandling my civil matter was one and the same as former prosecutor Dean Moxley who was involved in most of the above railroads, including Gary’s. I began writing to then-Governor Jeb Bush seeking Wilton Dedge’s freedom in 2004, and I haven’t stopped writing since, typically Cc:ing the current governor and appropriate agency leader.

This is not the first time I have had to write to ask that Gary be treated like a human being … there is correspondence of record from studio8@infionline.net – my former email address – to Gretl Plessinger, who previously held the position you know hold, and now serves in the same position at the Florida Department of Law Enforcement, under numerous conflicts of interest aside from Gary’s mistreatment of record (the FDLE’s ongoing willingness to let the FL DoC get away with murder is hardly a secret). I complained to Ms. Plessinger about Gary’s epilepsy medication being arbitrarily withheld, and – if memory serves – about his being beaten, about the bogus Discipline Reports being written against him, and about his teeth – which continue to rot, causing painful chewing and related weight loss.

In this repeat instance of Gary being beaten, a corrections officer is insisting that Gary go into protective custody – the hole – in order to be able to file a report against his attacker and receive medical care. That is coercion, and that’s not the full extent of it: Gary has been told not to ask for a dental appointment again, or he will be denied sick calls and access to ibuprofen – the Florida Department of Corrections cure for all ailments, including cancer.

Like every politically active Floridian that values all lives, I have been requesting genuine prison reform from Florida’s Legislature, and I’ve attempted to get others to become active … links to a couple of my related blog posts are provided below. As regards the Suwannee CI post, I feel that it is your direct responsibility to assuage the absolute terror that inmates’ families experience when they don’t know the reason for a lockdown at a facility with a history of unexplained deaths. The information I provided in the other post had nothing to do with Gary; the information regarding corrections officers’ resumed confidence in failed DoC oversight was provided by families of other inmates, housed at different facilities.

Floridians receive pennies on the dollar in actual benefits from paying public servants to administer justice and subsequently warehouse inmates, including railroaded innocents and persons whose mental or physical illness has been ridiculously criminalized, for profiteering purposes. Those pennies are cancelled out – and then some – when Floridians, not the actual wrongdoers, foot the bill for exoneration compensation and damages in wrongful death cases. Please give us some bang for our bucks as regards your employment, sir, and let me know that you have taken direct action on Gary’s behalf to see to it that he is allowed to unconditionally file a grievance, and access actual medical and dental care, not just ibuprofen. Thank you.

Sincerely,

Susan Chandler

https://wobblywarrior.wordpress.com/2015/04/15/fl-correctons-officers-seem-confident-of-legislative-failure-to-reform-doc/

https://wobblywarrior.wordpress.com/2015/04/21/with-one-day-notice-and-no-explanation-fl_corrections-closed-suwannee-ci-to-visitors-for-two-days/

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President Pérez Molina Will Extend Mandate of CICIG in Guatemala

Originally posted on Monitoring Guatemala:

GHRC applauds today’s decision by President Otto Pérez Molina to extend the mandate of the International Commission Against Impunity in Guatemala (CICIG). The CICIG is a UN-backed entity tasked with helping state institutions investigate and disband organized criminal structures, and has played an absolutely vital role in fighting corruption, strengthening institutional capacity, and promoting rule of law in Guatemala.

The CICIG’s mandate was set to expire in September 2015, and its extension has been under debate for the past several months. As President Pérez Molina suggested that he would not extend the mandate, Guatemalan and international organizations launched a campaign to support the CICIG and advocate for its continuation.

As part of this discussion, GHRC was asked to contribute to a featured Q&A in the Inter-American Dialogue’s Latin America Advisor on the role CICIG has played in Guatemala, and whether or not its mandate should be extended.

KAJ-InterAmericanDialogue-sm GHRC welcomes the extension of the mandate…

View original 11 more words

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Reprieve: @WhiteHouse apologies for #drone civilian deaths are reserved for Westerners

Reprieve: +1 917 855 8064

For immediate release: Thurs April 23, 2015

US drone killed two hostages: Reprieve comment

Commenting on today’s news that a US drone mistakenly killed two hostages, an Italian and an American, in a January strike, Reprieve US attorney Alka Pradhan, who represents other civilian victims of drone attacks, said:

“It’s right that the White House has come clean and admitted its tragic mistake in killing these hostages, and our hearts go out to their families.

“It’s worth remembering, however, that Dr. Weinstein and Mr Lo Porto are far from the first innocents to die by our drones, and in no other case has the US apologized for its mistake.

“The White House is setting a dangerous precedent – that if you are Western and hit by accident we’ll say we are sorry, but we’ll put up a stone wall of silence if you are a Yemeni or Pakistani civilian who lost an innocent loved one. Inconsistencies like this are seen around the world as hypocritical, and do the United States’ image real harm.  [emphasis added]

“Greater transparency is just the start of what we need: we also need a fundamental reassessment of whether the secret drone war does more harm than good.”

ENDS

Notes to editors

1. For further information, please contact Reprieve’s US press office: +1 917 855 8064

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The party of “death panels” accusers is killing poor people

Republicans want to limit Medicaid, kill Obamacare … and hurt people like me | Alan Chin | Comment is free | The Guardian

Governor Rick Scott of Florida announced on 16 April that he is going to sue the Obama administration for trying to expand Medicaid in his state, despite up to 800,000 people being potentially eligible. Florida is behind only Texas leading the nation in the number of uninsured. In both states, without either voluntary state-run health insurance exchanges or proposed Medicaid expansion, the Affordable Care Act has failed to make enough of an impact. Where you live now determines how you will or won’t get health care, every bit as much or more as your profession and income. [emphasis added]

via Republicans want to limit Medicaid, kill Obamacare … and hurt people like me | Alan Chin | Comment is free | The Guardian.

————————————

Sadly, there are far too many elected representatives that feel a significant number of their impoverished constituents are disposable, while simultaneously holding the conviction that its impossible to coddle wealthy corporations enough.

From: Susan Chandler
Date: April 22, 2015 8:03:50 PM EDT
To: “Burgess, Danny” <Danny.Burgess@myfloridahouse.gov>
Subject: Re: Medicaid Expansion

Dear Representative Burgess,

While I do appreciate your having responded to my request that Florida implement Medicaid Expansion, I cannot appreciate the content of your response. It is misleading, to say the least.

You could easily fund Medicaid Expansion by: 1) closing the DROP pension loophole that now has Florida Department of Corrections Secretary Julie Jones newly overfeeding at the trough; 2) transferring mentally ill prisoners that don’t belong in prison to treatment facilities, where care will be less expensive and where they won’t be murdered; 3) setting up a state bank – like North Dakota’s approximately @100-year-old institution – to loan money and collect interest and keep lobbyists out of the financial loop as regards state pensions and more; 4) collecting all the ethics fines levied against legislators that shouldn’t have been written off; 5) ceasing to give tax cuts to businesses that pay low wages and offer no benefits, which keep Floridians dependent on the state and federal government; 6) restoring and streamlining Charlie Crist’s felon rights restoration protest, which cost a fraction of the New Jim Crow restoration process that makes it nearly impossible for a non-violent, first time offender to ever vote again; 7) having malicious public servants directly foot the bill for damages for wrongful convictions, wrongful deaths, injuries via excessive use of force, etc.; that they have caused via asset forfeiture and voiding their pensions.

There is much more you can do, of course; it boggles my mind and chills my soul that you would pretend otherwise while Floridians like young Charlene Dill die from lack of medical care.

Again, thank you for responding.

Sincerely,
Susan Chandler

On Apr 22, 15, at 3:22 PM, Burgess, Danny wrote:

Thank you for contacting my office regarding the expansion of Medicaid. I appreciate you taking the time to contact me on this very important issue. While I understand and fully respect your position on this issue, I would like to take a moment to personally clarify why I believe this would be bad policy for the State of Florida.
 
Before I explain my reasons for opposing the expansion of Medicaid, I would like to make one thing very clear; I do not want to see any person go without health insurance. It is heartbreaking to think that there are people within this country who have to make a decision on whether or not to go to see a doctor over finances. On this we can all agree and many hours of research and prayer have gone into my decision. I cannot in good conscience obligate money we do not have. The issue is not a matter of whether or not I want to provide expanded healthcare, but whether or not we can afford it.
 
At first glance it sounds great to hear that the federal government is going to fund this expansion. However, when looking at the federal government’s specific offer, which I detail below, it becomes clear that they are not offering the State anything but unsustainable debt. Florida law mandates that the Legislature pass a balanced budget for our state just like everyone must balance a budget at home.
 
Under federal law, the current cost for Medicaid is split between the state and federal government. The State of Florida pays for 40% of the cost and the federal government pays for 60%. The rules of this agreement mean that the State of Florida cannot change or reform Medicaid without the approval of the federal government. If Florida found a way to make our Medicaid program better and the federal government refused to listen to our idea, then Florida will not be able to reform the program.
 
The federal government is not just a restrictive partner; they can also be quite punitive and very unreliable. The federal government is nearly $20 trillion in debt, which means that every dollar given is borrowed money that the federal government does not have. A perfect instance of this is with regards to federal flood insurance. In 2013, the National Flood Insurance Program came very close to running out of money as Congress and the White House wrangled over funding. We saw the federal government shut down in 2013 as they could not agree on a budget. As for their punitive nature, we only need to look at what they are doing with the Low-Income Pool (LIP) funding for hospitals. For the first time, the federal government has officially tied the ongoing negotiations over the continuation of LIP funding to expanding Medicaid under the Affordable Care Act. This decision by the federal government will leave Florida on the hook for over $1 billion.
 
In the US Supreme Court’s ruling in NFIB v. Sebelius, the Court said that the decision to expand Medicaid should be left to the states and warned the federal government against coercing states into expansion. The federal government is attempting to illegally coerce our state into expanding Medicaid in exchange for dollars to help hospitals provide health services to our most vulnerable citizens. Florida is one of the only states where the federal government is deliberately tying LIP funding to Medicaid expansion. With such an erratic and unreliable partner, I have very deep reservations about trusting the federal government to keep their word on funding this program.
 
Even if the federal government does keep their word on paying for the expansion under the current offer, after three years their contribution begins to decrease, and by year seven the State will be on the hook for paying 10% of the expansion. The State had our Revenue Estimating Conference run the numbers on Medicaid expansion and they determined that the cost of Medicaid expansion to the State just for those seven years will be between $3.4-$3.8 billion. That is more than three times this year’s budget surplus. Just like I would never obligate my family’s personal budget to something we do not have the money for; I cannot in good conscience obligate taxpayer dollars to something that the State of Florida cannot afford.
 
No Congress can bind another Congress, so it is very possible to imagine a scenario down the road where the federal government decides that the expansion of Medicaid should be funded with the same percentages as normal Medicaid, with a 60-40 split. If it costs the State $3.8 billion at just 10%, the cost to the State for an extra 30% would be unsustainable without either drastic spending cuts to other programs, such as education, or very large tax increases.
 
If Florida did expand Medicaid as currently proposed, the quality of care for recipients will be reduced even further and recipients will still be forced to go to the ER for routine medical treatment, much like the majority of them currently do without health insurance. This is because approximately 40% of doctors and a large number of specialists do not accept Medicaid patients due to the low rate of reimbursement that these doctors receive, according to a 2008 Center for Studying Health Systems Change national survey. The program must be fixed before it is expanded. By simply expanding Medicaid, quality of care will decrease and the waiting list will only grow longer, inhibiting all Medicaid recipients from receiving the quality care they deserve.
 
Any approach we would take should offer free market solutions that provide better health outcomes and more access to quality care for our most vulnerable citizens.
 
Our federal system of government has created 50 laboratories of democracy; we do not need to speculate about what ifs, we merely have to look at what has already come to pass. For example, in an April 15, 2015, article written by Arkansas State Senator Bryan King, he warns against repeating Arkansas’ failed attempt to expand Medicaid, which is very similar to the Florida Senate’s current proposal for expansion. Senator King explained:
 
“In 2013, Arkansas’s then-Governor Mike Beebe (D) pushed a non-traditional Medicaid expansion program that gives low-income individuals subsidies to use toward private coverage, rather than enrolling them into Medicaid. This initiative was marketed as a “state-based” plan for reform and one that inserts flexibility and innovation into expansion as outlined under the Affordable Care Act (ACA). While nearly all Republican governors took a firm stand against traditional expansion, some now perceive Arkansas’s model as a means to get their hands on federal money while distancing themselves from the ACA. Unfortunately, as Arkansas can now attest, Medicaid expansion remains a bad deal for states and cannot truthfully be sold as a fiscally prudent or free market idea. When you get beyond the rhetoric, Arkansas’s expansion has been a disaster.”
 
Ever wonder why the majority of lobbyists and special interest groups support Medicaid expansion? This is because big business and the big hospitals stand to make huge profits from the expansion of Medicaid due to the fact that many primary care doctors and specialists do not accept new Medicaid patients and are therefore forced to present themselves to emergency rooms. Those of us who oppose Medicaid expansion but want to reform a broken system are not in the pockets of the special interests; we are standing up for those in need of quality health insurance. We are fighting to prevent a broken program from expanding because as it currently exists, it is failing to help the very people it was designed to assist.
 
I was elected to vote in the best interest of my constituents and all residents of the State of Florida. I want to be very clear, this decision is mine. Before I was elected to this position, I was very vocal about my stance and it has not changed. I do not toe party lines or cast votes for political expediency; I have already voted against my own party in my short tenure as an elected representative. My decision also has nothing to do with our President or his policies as some have suggested. My decision is about the people of Florida and what is in their best interest – to ensure we continue to have a sound budget and never obligate ourselves to something we cannot afford. Every vote I cast is prayerfully made and reflects what I believe is in the best interest of those that I was elected to represent. I will never become the status quo nor will I ever violate my conscience or convictions so long as I have the honor to serve in this capacity.
 
Thank you again for your email and please do not hesitate to contact me in the future. It is an honor to serve you in the Florida House.
 
Sincerely,
<image001.jpg>
Danny Burgess
State Representative, District 38
35358 State Road 54
Zephyrhills, Florida 33541
(813) 780-0667
Danny.Burgess@myfloridahouse.gov
 
Please Note: Florida has a very broad public records law. Most written communications to or from state officials regarding state business are considered to be public records and will be made available to the public and the media upon request. Your e-mail messages may, therefore, be subject to public disclosure.

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