Posts Tagged ‘blackmail’
Pope Francis lamented that a “gay lobby” was at work at the Vatican in private remarks to the leadership of a key Latin American church group — a stunning acknowledgment that appears to confirm earlier reports about corruption and dysfunction in the Holy See…
The group, known by its Spanish acronym CLAR, said it was greatly distressed that the document had been published and apologized to the pope.
In the document, Francis is quoted as saying that while there were many holy people in the Vatican, there was also corruption: “The `gay lobby’ is mentioned, and it is true, it is there … We need to see what we can do …” the synthesis reads…
In the days leading up to Pope Benedict XVI’s Feb. 28 resignation, Italian media were rife with reports of a “gay lobby” influencing papal decision-making and Vatican policy through blackmail, and suggestions that the scandal had led in part to Benedict’s decision to resign…
The unsourced reports, in the Rome daily La Repubblica and the news magazine Panorama, said details of the scandal were laid out in the secret dossier prepared for Benedict by three trusted cardinals who investigated the leaks of papal documents last year.
Sounds like the history of corruption among our own fascist-minded from Joe McCarthy to Ted Cruz: “I have this list in my hand of communist agents in the State Department/Harvard Law School/Occupy Texas” – just cross out the targets that don’t fit the day’s slander.
In the synthesis, Francis was quoted as being remarkably forthcoming about his administrative shortcomings, saying he was relying on the group of eight cardinals he appointed to lead a reform of the Vatican bureaucracy.
The document quoted him as saying: “I am very disorganized, I have never been good at this. But the cardinals of the commission will move it forward.”
Cripes, he even has his own Gang of Eight. No doubt as unlikely to place civil rights and civil liberties ahead of personal gain than the average Congress-thug. Meanwhile, the Vatican’s tradition of gay-bashing is dragged-out once again as a weapon of self-defense by a tottering group of old men centuries beyond their sell-by date.
Al Gerhart was charged Tuesday with two felonies involving an email that threatened a state senator to pass a bill…A co-founder of the Sooner Tea Party was charged Tuesday with blackmail over an email that he admits sending to a state senator.
Both counts are felonies…
Gerhart sent the email March 26 to Sen. Cliff Branan, promising to make the senator a laughing stock unless the Senate Energy and Environment Committee passed a bill dealing with a United Nations plan.
Branan, R-Oklahoma City, is chairman of the committee. The senator turned the email over to the Oklahoma Highway Patrol.
Misspelling one word, Gerhart wrote: “Branan, Get that bill heard or I will make sure you regret not doing it. I will make you the laughing stock of the Senate if I don’t hear that this bill will be heard and passed. We will dig into your past, yoru family, your associates and once we start on you there will be no end to it. This is a promise…”
Oklahoma County District Attorney David Prater commended Branan for reporting the email.
“I believe he was very courageous in the way he handled this knowing there could be further repercussions to him or to his family,” Prater said Tuesday. “The manner in which Sen. Branan has handled this situation will hopefully prevent this … from happening in the future.”
Branan said Tuesday that once he turned the email over, it was “out of his hands.”
Apparently Tea Party nutballs consider extortion and blackmail protected by constitutional rights – and no longer are crimes.
Weary of plastic litter, Grand Canyon National Park officials were in the final stages of imposing a ban on the sale of disposable water bottles in the Grand Canyon late last year when the nation’s parks chief abruptly blocked the plan after conversations with Coca-Cola, a major donor to the National Park Foundation.
Stephen P. Martin, the architect of the plan and the top parks official at the Grand Canyon, said his superiors told him two weeks before its Jan. 1 start date that Coca-Cola, which distributes water under the Dasani brand and has donated more than $13 million to the parks, had registered its concerns about the bottle ban through the foundation, and that the project was being tabled. His account was confirmed by park, foundation and company officials.
A spokesman for the National Park Service, David Barna, said it was Jon Jarvis, the top federal parks official, who made the “decision to put it on hold until we can get more information…”
Mr. Martin, a 35-year veteran of the park service who had risen to the No. 2 post in 2003, was disheartened by the outcome. “That was upsetting news because of what I felt were ethical issues surrounding the idea of being influenced unduly by business,” Mr. Martin said in an interview. “It was even more of a concern because we had worked with all the people who would be truly affected in their sales and bottom line, and they accepted it…”
A spokeswoman for Coca-Cola Refreshments USA, Susan Stribling, said the company would rather help address the plastic litter problem by increasing the availability of recycling programs. “Banning anything is never the right answer,” she said…
Discarded plastic bottles account for about 30 percent of the park’s total waste stream, according to the park service. Mr. Martin said the bottles are “the single biggest source of trash” found inside the canyon.
The more things change, the more they stay the same. One of the significant differences between services responsible for America’s parks and landholdings is the history of battles just like this one. Going back to the days of Reagan’s slavish attitude towards corporate demands, some agencies like the Bureau of Land Management have been led by dedicated rank-and-file employees to confront sellouts. The Park Service continues to be controlled by bureaucrats perfectly willing to be bought – directly or indirectly.
RTFA for more details – if you can stomach the same old political rationales.