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Archive for December 7th, 2011

Murdoch phone hacking developments

Posted by Charles II on December 7, 2011

Dan Sabbagh and Lisa O’Carroll:

James Murdoch has written to MPs claiming that Rebekah Brooks reached a settlement with Max Clifford in 2010 over his phone hacking-claims against the News of the World without seeking authorisation with him or discussing its terms.

Further detail is provided by Linklaters, lawyers to News Corporation’s in house management and standards committee, which said there was no written agreement for the Clifford settlement, in a separate letter to the committee.

Jason Deans and Lisa O’Carroll:

The News of the World’s former chief reporter has provided written evidence to MPs accusing executives on the paper of “withholding information” about the extent of phone-hacking at the title from a parliamentary committee and other senior News International managers including James Murdoch.

Neville Thurlbeck claimed Colin Myler, the former News of the World editor, and Tom Crone, the former head of legal at the newspaper, had left him “to dangle as a suspect for the next two years” after he first told them in July 2009 that he had “final proof” that phone-hacking at the paper went beyond a single “rogue reporter”.

James Robinson:

Andy Coulson has taken News of the World publisher News Group Newspapers to the high court in an attempt to force the company to continue paying his legal fees relating to the phone-hacking affair.

Coulson is suing News International subsidiary News Group Newspapers over the construction of a clause within the severance agreement entered into when he resigned as News of the World in January 2007.

His counsel, James Laddie, told Mr Justice Supperstone at the high court in London on Wednesday that Coulson’s contract included an agreement to pay the cost of any “regulatory, administrative, judicial or quasi-judicial” legal action he might face.

Lisa O’Carroll and Josh Halliday:

The private investigator Glenn Mulcaire is understood to have been arrested in connection with voicemail interception and perverting the course of justice.


Posted in Rupert Murdoch, wiretapping | 2 Comments »

Your sanity break

Posted by Charles II on December 7, 2011

Krugman, Reinhart, and Nocera

Posted in financial crisis, mortgage crisis, Paul Krugman | Comments Off on Your sanity break

Suicide Files: Fletcher Allies Who Weren’t Investigated By Internal Affairs Unit

Posted by Phoenix Woman on December 7, 2011

Anyone who thought that the Suicide Files were played out has now been shown to be sadly mistaken. The drip, drip, drip continues as City Pages’ Jessica Lussenhop releases Dan Ruettimann’s last bequest to the City of Saint Paul in short, powerful doses.

Here’s some of a dose from a few days ago, where Ruettimann — who apparently took his own life because a Fletcher-ordered Ramsey County Internal Affairs investigation had ruined his career — posthumously provides documentation on the misbehavior of several other officers who never got the Internal Affairs reaming he did, a fact he attributes to their being Fletcher supporters:

​The reports that Ruettimann pulled on other officers — four in total — cover a variety of offenses, from drunk driving to domestic assault. City Pages determined from a Data Practices request that Ruettimann was correct — none of the officers were investigated by Internal Affairs for the crimes described in any of the reports. For this reason, City Pages is withholding their names.


One deputy had two incident reports in Ruettimann’s file:
In 2008, he sped through a stop sign and was pulled over by a Washington County Sheriff’s deputy. He took a breathalyzer which came back 0.12 and was arrested.
In 2005, officers responded to a domestic assault call to the same deputy’s home. His wife told police they’d fought over who left the toilet seat up, and that he started to choke her. She said he hit her in the face twice, physically threw her out the front door, then “kicked and punched her” when she was able to get back in. Her brother told the cops he’d seen the deputy slap his wife twice and throw her out of the house. The responding officers noted the deputy’s wife had visible injuries. A domestic assault case against the deputy was eventually dismissed.
While no investigation was opened on either incident, the officer has had numerous trips to Internal Affairs. In 2000, he was found culpable in an excessive force charge. In 2002, he was faulted for driving conduct. In 2006, he was suspended for four days for Conduct Unbecoming an Officer. The punishment stemmed from an incident when the deputy rolled through a red light and was hit by another car. An arrestee he was taking to booking was injured in the accident and had to go to the hospital. When asked for an explanation, the deputy reportedly said, “Honest to god truth is, it was around 4 o’clock I was being impatient.”

Yet another Internal Affairs investigation for “improper procedure” is currently open on the same deputy.

A deputy was reported for threatening to kill another man in an incident report from 2006. The deputy was found passed out in an alley by two women and they guided him to their house in an attempt to help him. When the deputy woke up still intoxicated, he began threatening to kill the home’s owner. The homeowner ran out the door in fear and called 911 from a gas station.

The deputy was not arrested, and though he has been the subject of three unrelated Internal Affairs investigations, none were found substantive.

In addition, Ruettimann, before his death, had lodged complaints with Internal Affairs about, among other things, the conflicts of interest of the Internal Affairs investigator handling the probe of Ruettimann. (It seems that the investigator has contributed numerous times to Fletcher’s re-election campaigns and that she also worked for Fletcher’s wife’s real estate business.)

No wonder the “Friends of Bob” are screaming like banshees in the comments sections of Lussenhop’s articles. It’s like they and their bobo Fletcher are vampires who have been hit with holy water from a firehose at high noon.

Posted in abuse of power | 3 Comments »

The Occupy March On Washington: Behind The Scenes

Posted by Phoenix Woman on December 7, 2011

Did you know that there was a March on Washington last month? Or that it was held by the Occupy movement? Not if you depend on the evening TV news, drive-time radio, or most newspapers for your news.

Shockingly enough, the Washington Post sent a blogger to embed herself with the march. Even more shockingly, she didn’t do a hit piece, but an honest piece of journalism. A representative sampling:

For 11 days of the 14-day Occupy Wall Street march from New York’s Zuccotti Park to Washington last month, I joined dozens of protesters as they trekked through rainstorms and 30-degree chill. They slept in tents; ate handouts of Halloween candy and peanut-butter-and-jelly sandwiches; and endured severe shinsplints, knee injuries and catcalls of “Get a job!” They argued among themselves as much as with others they met along the way.

As this odyssey ended, I thought about the public perception of the Occupy movement and about the Occupiers I’d met on the road. There is the Occupy shown by the news media, defined by police clashes and a lack of hygiene — images that tell non-Occupiers that the movement is leaderless, chaotic and on its way out. But as the marchers passed through towns large and small, and ordinary Americans came out of their homes and businesses to give food, money and words of support, it became clear that this movement isn’t going away.

No, it’s not.

Posted in Uncategorized | Comments Off on The Occupy March On Washington: Behind The Scenes

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