Thursday, August 27, 2009

If a Connecticut Lawyer thinks this is okay ...?

Story is below my comment. There just aren't enough checks and balances when it comes to judicial and attorney misconduct. My complaint against Stafford Springs/Ellington Connecticut area Attorney Michal H. Agranoff [click here]

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Vernon (Connecticut) Attorney Charged With Using Dead Aunt's ATM Card

By AVIV BLASBALG The Hartford Courant

10:51 p.m. EDT, August 26, 2009

NEW BRITAIN — - A Vernon attorney has been released on a promise to appear following her arrest on charges that she used her dead aunt's ATM card and bank account.

Heather Kaufmann, 33, surrendered to police Monday and is facing charges of second-degree forgery, third-degree larceny, third-degree identity theft, credit card theft, receiving goods illegally, charging less than $500 on a revoked credit card and five counts of fraudulent use of an ATM. She is scheduled to appear at Superior Court in New Britain on Sept. 9.

According to court documents, police said that in the days following the death of her aunt on Dec. 7, 2008, Kaufmann used her aunt's ATM card and wrote a check on the account that, together, came to more than $3,200.

Kaufmann is charged with using the ATM card five times to make withdrawals at a Rockville bank. She also is accused of using the card at stores such as Kmart, Target and a New York City Toys "R" Us.

The affidavit also says that Kaufmann wrote a check from the account of more than $1,000 to her boyfriend, UConn Law Professor Robert L. Birmingham, and signed the check with her aunt's name.

Police said they were notified in January by a relative who was assigned by a Berlin probate court to handle the estate that more than $3,000 was missing from the account.

According to court documents, Kaufmann, who described her relationship with her aunt as similar to that of a mother and daughter, initially told police that her aunt allowed her to use the account to make purchases for her, but she denied using the account after the aunt had died.

She did not have power of attorney over her aunt's estate and did not file any paperwork with the probate court.

Police said that after being confronted with a videotape of the ATM withdrawals, Kaufmann said she used the money she withdrew from the ATM to pay for expenses related to the funeral and issued the check to Birmingham to reimburse him for a $2,000 check he had written to a New Britain funeral home as a deposit for her aunt's funeral services. The funeral home is still owed another $8,000.

Kaufmann also told police that the store purchases were for presents for family members that the aunt would have wanted them to have. Kaufmann pointed out that she used her own funds to pay for the trip to New York, where the Toys "R" Us purchase was made.

Kaufmann served as Birmingham's attorney in October 2007 when the professor agreed to take a leave of absence after showing a clip from the R-rated film "Really, Really Pimpin' in Da South" in his legal remedies class.

The film featured an interview with a convicted pimp, but when Birmingham pressed the pause button as the interview ended, the film had switched over to a scene of a thong-clad woman dancing suggestively, which created a buzz on the campus but did not result in any formal student complaints.

Birmingham returned the following semester, but his usual course on feminist legal theory was dropped.

Copyright © 2009, The Hartford Courant

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[click here] for:

Much Less Than Honorable, Former Connecticut Supreme Court Justice William Sullivan

Ex-Chief Justice Decides To Testify
Sullivan To Appear Before Judiciary Panel Despite Pending Appeal
December 22, 2006
By LYNNE TUOHY, Hartford Courant Staff Writer

Former Chief Justice William J. Sullivan has reversed his stance and said he will voluntarily testify before the legislature's Judiciary Committee about his secret withholding of a controversial ruling on access to the courts.


Sunday, August 16, 2009

Obama, Afghanistan, and Heroin?

The government and US court version of giving us the truth

Is there a link between Obama, Afghanistan, and the Heroin Trade?


We can't pin the blame for any one problem on any one President.

When Ronald Reagan was president, I recall him holding crack cocaine rocks and a crack pipe in his hands on national live television. I thought then to myself, "Why isn't this guy (Reagan) being arrested for having illegal narcotics and paraphernalia?" as he didn't have police officers with him supervising his handling "evidence".

At the time Ronald Reagan was playing his acting part looking like he cared about the drug epidemic during the "Pretend War on Drugs" and Nancy Reagan was saying, "Just say no", Ronny, Ollie North, and others were making sure CIA and military transport airplanes were bringing in as much cocaine into the US, as was possible, to fund illegal wars, assassinations, covert operations, illegal domestic and international spying, and for paying out hush money and bribes. There is plenty of information on Iran/Contra.

The war profiteers are still buying exotic vacations houses all over the world paid for with the blood of others.

When the US had "boots on the ground" in Afghanistan, suddenly heroin became cheaper, stronger, and more plentiful in the world. Do the math.

So, If US President Obama wants to concentrate on having military control of Afghanistan, not North Korea or nations without oil, drugs, and natural resources who present real problems to the world, what does that say on what the real agenda is?

To be a lawyer, you have to belong to a secret society even before leaving law school. Favors are owed, connections are made, and the education, unique language of a separate society, and the rules of being toasted if you tell, are planted for life.

I would like to see Obama act as advertised. Only time will tell.

Steven G. Erickson is a freelance cameraman, blogger, photographer, documentary producer, screenwriter, sometimes journalist, and can and will travel anywhere if the terms are right. His objective is to reform America's courts, creating a "People's (more...)

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Comments so far:

I agree the wife and political party swapping Reagan

was one of the buiggest drug dealers the world has seen and it was inexcusable for Congress to not Impeach him for the Treason fomenting Iran-Contra weapons for cocaine scandle.

After the Taliban began to govern Afghanistan, the heroin trade there ceased and the Bu$h/Obama administration claimed/claims they are using this trade to finance their side of the war. it just does not add up.

Like 9/11 all the pieces of the US reasoning to justify the War Of Terror are based on lies and deceit to fleece the American taxpayer for the benefit of the MIC based economy that drives the US economic engine.

With direct US involvement in the drug trade to finance its covert activities to assist in the never-ending military campaigns through its terrorizing of innocent people around the world, for the advantage of multinational companies to exploit local resources.

by Stanimal (2 articles, 237 quicklinks, 38 diaries, 1313 comments [249 recommended, 2 rejected]) on Sunday, Aug 16, 2009 at 3:44:29 PM

Is there a link between Obama, Afghanistan, and Heroin?

Yes. For starters, just type in "CIA" "drugs" "Afghanistan" into your search engine and start browsing.There's been an exponential resurgence of the opium trade since the US-led coalition forces tied the Taliban's hands and obliterated their near-complete ban on poppy farming - this was no accident.

Check out this piece, starting at 3:40 or so...

Also, take him or leave him, Mike Ruppert (among others) has done some interesting investigative research on the drug trade, the C.I.A.'s role in it, and how Wall Street funnels the drug profits through major banking institutions to fund myriad covert operations.

There's lots out there, but here are a couple interesting pieces:

click here

click here

But, regarding Obama... don't waste your time waiting for the leopard to change his spots.


by Minion Zero (0 articles, 0 quicklinks, 15 diaries, 81 comments [7 recommended, 0 rejected]) on Sunday, Aug 16, 2009 at 4:04:14 PM

The above was first post on [here]

Thursday, August 13, 2009

MoveOn: The Movie -- Trailer


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[click here] for Steven G. Erickson's main blog, "The Stark Raving Viking"

Friday, August 07, 2009

Microsoft mirror to US Gov?

What type of taste does the US Government and the US Government Jr., Microsoft, leave in the mouths of We the People?

I purchased a laptop with Windows Vista with 512 megabytes of RAM last Summer. Like most PCs with a Microsoft operating system, I was aggravated and felt ripped off immediately after purchase, and after my most recent computer purchase have thought about the similarities of promises, delivery of services, attitude, and management style of the US Government mirroring a smaller cog in the wheel, Microsoft.

It is amazing to me how alike they really are.

I had been plodding along on an outdated HP PC laptop with XP, and just couldn't get on the internet anymore and it would crash when having anything to do with rendering and editing video clips. I am a poster of videos on the internet, and that is a “must have” for me, so I just had to take the plunge, buying another computer. I had bought a laptop with Vista last Summer, and was so frustrated, I sold it online after 3 months of swearing and taking out a notepad, not the computer, to release my creative energy.

Windows Vista was not compatible with any of my peripherals. I had recently purchased video editing software, a DV video camera, DVD burner, printer, etc. and nothing worked! I was faced with re-buying everything to be Vista compatible or in finding a used or new computer with the older system, XP, on it. Vista is a resource hog, is unstable, and has more bugs than a house infested with termites. You need to have at least a gig of RAM to even make Vista resemble operating at any kind of speed. My new computer with Vista was the slowest computer I have ever owned or used, and I have been using computers since 1980. What were they thinking, only sending out units with 512 megabytes of RAM that made the computer seem like it would take 5 minutes booting up, shutting down, or just deciding if the piece of junk felt like doing any computing?

Wanting XP on a new computer, I sought out a provider of business computers as they are still available, new, with XP loaded. I chose a Lenovo “Think Pad” with 2 gigs of RAM, a 160 gig hard drive and a processor with a clock speed just over 2 and paid just over $500.

It's fast, and does what I wanted it to do. I usually back up everything as sometimes I can't even finish typing a simple document offline without my former PCs crashing, losing irreplaceable creative energy. I shot about 3 hours of video wanting to hone some of my screenwriting work by actually seeing it spoken out on video.

Well, I was up late Tuesday night, I didn't feel I needed to back up all that video immediately to an external hard drive. I wanted to leave for work, Wednesday morning, and my laptop told me, “No, don't leave for work on time, wait at least a half hour while I am locked up on update # 22 of 55.” So, I had a choice to make, not let a PC waste more of my time on endless updates, or just go.

I quickly consulted a seller of business computers and she told me that if I just closed the computer, I could go to work as the laptop computer updated itself. Wrong, it would not re-boot, and I had to re-set it to factory settings as the computer majorly crashed. Getting it to work at all again involved a process that took two and a half hours when I made it to work on time. Since the desktop computer on my desk at work, is also a Microsoft operated PC, and a bit older, it has been dead, after barely functioning, limping on my desk for some time. I have been relying on my own laptops to do my job at work. So, as usual, I was F'ed over by Microsoft, yet again.

Well, not only did my PC screw me over for the only small bit of free time I had, making me lose all the toil in my video editing and rendering hobby, it also completely torpedoed my work day. Multiply my frustration and wasted time by millions and millions of people in the world. Imagine a Microsoft executive with huge homes, multiple luxury cars, and a cushy retirement package.

Millions of people have PCs with Microsoft operating systems worldwide. Microsoft is a face of the USA. How many wasted days and billions of dollars are wasted every year because of the arrogant and wasteful management style and choices of a monopoly out of control?

I have tried to access the US Government to make it work more efficiently and to operate as advertised and find out it is as arrogant and completely inaccessible, and is almost as user unfriendly as is Microsoft operating on a PC. The seeing if our Government is accessible is a whole other story, and I will leave that to more of my blogs.

Thursday, August 06, 2009

Bugged in Connecticut?

Lobby for new police headquarters continues


Times Staff Writer

STAMFORD [Connecticut]-- Police and city officials say the Stamford Police Department's recent insect infestation sheds added light on the need for a new building.

"I think (the pest problem) is just another example of a number of issues that have come up over the years," said police union President Sgt. Joseph Kennedy. "The working conditions at this building are just disgusting for our officers to deal with on a day-to-day basis."

Bird mites, deer ticks and other insects brought in from birds nesting in the soffit, which surrounds the upper-portion of the department's Bedford Street headquarters, have made their way inside the building, Kennedy said.

The pests currently occupy the first and second floor of the department, and have forced the Burglary Squad out of their office space and into a spare interrogation room, he said.

Insect bites were reported as early as three weeks ago, Kennedy said. So far, six officers have reported being bitten, including Police Chief Brent Larrabee, who was bitten by a tick.

Two of the officers bitten have tested positive for Lyme disease; another has been diagnosed with encephalitis, Kennedy said.

"Things are pretty disgusting here right now," he said. "You wouldn't believe how many guys I see walking around the halls scratching."

Kennedy said he filed a complaint with the federal Occupational Safety and Health Administration, claiming 286 officers and 35 civilian employees are currently exposed to the bugs. An OSHA inspector paid a visit to the police department on Tuesday, he said.

"I'm still waiting to see what the story is with that," he said.

This is not the first time the department's headquarters has been plagued by a health problem.

In 2007, testing found high levels of lead in water fountains throughout the building. Prior to that, a lack of ventilation in the firing range posed a health risk to officers, Kennedy said.

"This place is falling apart," he said. "It's time we got a new building."

William Callion, director of public safety, health and welfare, said the city is addressing the current issue and plans to eradicate the problem in two phases: First, clearing out the nests and relocating the birds to a different location; and second, exterminating the mites, ticks and other pests inside the building.

"Eradication of the problem should occur by next week," Callion said.

Callion has been a strong proponent of outfitting the police department with a new, up-to-date facility. Structural problems with the building are beginning to weigh heavily against the city, and the police department has outgrown the space, he said.

The facility is occupied 24-hours a day, seven days a week. The original portion of the existing building is more than 50 years old, with the last renovation occurring 25 years ago, said Lou Casolo, the city's engineer.

"We had been hoping to find an alternative space to expand or build on," Callion said.

He added that based on preliminary plans, relocating the department doesn't seem like the most feasible option.

The Engineering Bureau has been approved to prepare concept design plans and a budget estimate for a new facility at the existing location, Casolo said.

"This concept plan will include a feasibility study and engineers' cost estimate that will be used to support a capital budget request for completion of final design and construction of a new facility," he said.

The Engineering Bureau intends on having its concept design and cost estimate included in the 2010-2011 capital budget, Casolo said.

A prior needs assessment review will be used to implement the concept study for station replacement on site, he said. This portion of the work will include evaluating swing space options so that a new facility can be constructed at the current location, while the majority of the operations remain in the existing building, Casolo said.
Stamford PD: City won't
budge on bugs

Updated: Thursday, 06 Aug 2009, 10:17 AM EDT
Published : Thursday, 06 Aug 2009, 10:15 AM EDT

Stamford (WTNH) - Some police officers in Stamford say their police headquarters is infested by bugs and its making some officers sick.

The Stamford police union says at least ten officers have been bitten by bugs inside the 50-year-old headquarters building.

They claim three officers and one civilian officer have tested positive for Lyme Disease.

The union says the bugs infestation came from birds roosting on the outside of the building.

The union says the city did bring in an exterminator but has refused to bring a doctor in to test officers for health problems.

Sunday, August 02, 2009

One more questionable Official Connecticut practice?

Rell Letters To Graduates Draw Scrutiny

Jon Lender Government Watch

August 2, 2009

Every year, Gov. M. Jodi Rell sends personalized letters of congratulation to new graduates of the University of Connecticut, the Connecticut State University System and the 12 state community colleges.

It's a practice the Republican chief executive began during 2005, her first full year in office. Her staff can't remember any other governors doing that; John G. Rowland, who resigned in mid-2004 in a corruption scandal, did not send such letters to graduates, Rell press aide Rich Harris said.

This year, 11,892 letters are being printed on official governor's stationery, folded and stuffed by Rell's staff and mailed at taxpayers' expense to graduates with Connecticut addresses, Harris said. They bear a blue state seal and Rell's signature printed in black.

Postage, at a bulk rate of 35.7 cents a letter, would be about $4,245 by itself, but Harris said he didn't know the total cost of the mailings. They come out of an annual printing and postage allotment that totaled $32,000 a year ago, he said. What Harris did know was that "legislators sent 4.4 million pieces of mail in Fiscal 2008 — the last year for which full figures are available — at a cost of $655,000 for printing and $1.7 million for postage."

So this is one of those political tools that an incumbent governor can employ to make constituents feel good and maybe build up her popularity at the same time. No big deal in the grand scheme of things, right?

And yet some observers think Rell's mailings are still worth examining.


•Because Rell has proclaimed ethics and good government as her watchwords, and issued an "executive directive" telling heads of government agencies to stop using paper unnecessarily during the current state budget crisis. "Use paperless processes whenever possible," she said.

•Because Rell's practice is unusual. Checks with governor's offices in Massachusetts, Rhode Island, New York and New Jersey found that none of them do it.

•And because, as nice as many graduates and their families may think it is to get a letter from the governor, not everybody likes the idea — certainly not the parent who wrote to The Courant to complain about it as exploitative — and some skeptics think the mailings may be political self-promotion on the taxpayers' dime.

"Any mass mailings sent by public officials at taxpayers' expense are fundamentally self-promotional and deserve some scrutiny," said Fergus Cullen, director of the Yankee Institute, "Connecticut's free-market think tank."

Harris called them "simple, congratulatory letters ... with an important message: Please make your home and your career in our state. We appreciate you and we need you — you are Connecticut's future."

One paragraph in the letters "sums it up nicely," Harris said. It says: "Whether you are planning on furthering your education, entering the work force or pursuing other endeavors, I strongly urge you to remain in Connecticut, a state with limitless opportunities and wonderful communities in which to begin a career."

The letters, by trying to keep "our best and our brightest" in Connecticut, serve an economic development purpose, adding that "virtually all" of them go to "Connecticut-only addresses."

But why limit it to people who can vote in Connecticut elections? Why not send letters to UConn grads from out of state? "Presumably, we'd like them to stay in Connecticut as well," Cullen said. "If it's for economic development, it should go to everybody."

Harris said the letters are not intended to draw votes in future elections.

Producing the letters now is an annual routine. "It's that time of the year! Please have your respective universities and colleges submit their 2009 Graduation lists in the format provided," a Rell staff member wrote May 11 in an e-mail to UConn, other state universities and community colleges.

That e-mail was released by UConn spokesman Michael Kirk, who said Rell's office asks every year for "directory information," including names and home addresses, on soon-to-graduate students from inside the state.

This is not the first time anyone has suggested that Rell has promoted herself with taxpayer funds. Senate Democrats earlier this year launched a study of the costs of public-service ads costing more than $1 million in which Rell has touted causes such as safe driving or "Staycation" tourism.

When Rell became governor in mid-2004, she said good government would take precedence over politics. But in 2005, her office spent $3,000 in tax money to issue a slick "Annual Report of the Governor" that looked like a campaign flier with close to 20 photos and glowing descriptions of Rell's "bold approach" to leadership.

Critics jumped on it, and there have been no glossy "annual reports" since then.

Jon Lender is a reporter on The Courant's investigative desk, with a focus on government and politics. Contact him at, 860-241-6524, or c/o The Hartford Courant, 285 Broad St., Hartford, CT 06115.

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A past Stark Raving Viking blog post:

Monday, December 10, 2007

Will I be writing a letter to Governor M. Jodi Rell when she goes to prison?

Connecticut Governor M. Jodi Rell with a buzz on?

Would the letter I write to Jodi be like the one I wrote to former Governor John G. Rowland?
[that letter]
posted by The Stark Raving Viking at 9:52 PM 1 comments links to this post

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