1 dead, 10 injured in city shootings since Wednesday afternoon – Chicago Sun-Times

1 dead, 10 injured in city shootings since Wednesday afternoon - Chicago Sun-Times

One person is dead, and at least 10 others, including a 14-year-old boy, were wounded in separate shootings since Wednesday afternoon.

A man was fatally shot early Thursday in the South Side Chatham neighborhood.

At 2:05 a.m., police responding to a call of shots fired near East 81st Street and South Cottage Grove Avenue found the man on the sidewalk with a gunshot wound to his head, Chicago Police said.

The man, in his 20s, was dead at the scene, police said.

The Cook County Medical Examiner’s office confirmed the death but could not provide any more information pending notification of the man’s family early Thursday.

In the most recent non-fatal incident, a 23-year-old man and a 42-year-old man were shot about 9:45 p.m. in the Buena Park neighborhood on the North Side. They were standing on the sidewalk in the 800 block of West Cuyler Avenue when they started fighting with two other men, police said. One of those men pulled out a handgun and fired shots, striking the two men, police said.

The 23-year-old was shot in his right thigh and left calf, and the 42-year-old was shot in the right arm, police said. Both were taken to Advocate Illinois Masonic Medical Center.

About 9 p.m., four men were shot while walking in the 7200 block of South Phillips Avenue, according to police. A 22-year-old was shot in his right leg and a 27-year-old was shot in his left thigh. They were taken to Northwestern Memorial Hospital. A 31-year-old was shot in his left calf and was taken to Jackson Park Hospital, and a 21-year-old was shot in the arm and was taken to South Shore Hospital.

About 3:10 p.m. Wednesday, a 30-year-old man was walking in the 6900 block of South Laflin Street when a vehicle pulled up and someone fired two shots, hitting him once in his left hip, police said. He was taken to Saint Bernard Hospital and Health Care Center in good condition.

Just after 3 p.m., two teenage boys — ages 14 and 17 — and a 25-year-old man were standing on the sidewalk in the 2800 block of West Flournoy Street when a dark-color sedan pulled up and someone inside fired shots at the group, police said. The 14-year-old was shot in his left knee and the 17-year-old was hit in his left leg. It wasn’t clear where the 25-year-old was shot, police said. All were listed in good condition at Mount Sinai Hospital.

No one was in custody in any of the shootings.

Feds May Be Empowered To Enter Your Property To Inspect Cars

Feds May Be Empowered To Enter Your Property To Inspect Cars

President Barack Obama’s $302 billion transportation bill gives federal regulators the power to enter the premises of car dealerships to determine if their vehicles are in compliance with federal fuel-economy mandates.

The Department of Transportation (DOT) could see its vehicle inspection authority expanded if Congress passes Obama’s Grow America Act. Currently, DOT officials are only allowed to inspect records and information from companies that must comply with federal fuel economy standards.

But Obama’s bill would allow federal bureaucrats to enter the premises of car dealerships to physically inspect to see if vehicles are in compliance with federal fuel economy standards.

“What this amendment does is clarify that the agency has authority, for example, to enter dealership premises in order to measure the footprint of a new vehicle and confirm that it is consistent with what the manufacturer has reported to us the footprint of that vehicle should be,” a representative for the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) told The Daily Caller News Foundation in an emailed statement.

The NHTSA is in charge of making sure that new vehicles actually meet federal fuel economy requirements as reported by auto makers. NHTSA said that automakers, not dealerships, are liable for vehicles not meeting fuel economy standards.

The bill “does not hold dealers liable, in any way, for variations in vehicle footprint, nor does it impose any kind of criminal penalty on anyone,” NHTSA added.

Federal fuel-economy standards — called Corporate Average Fuel Economy, or CAFE — require vehicles to get 54.5 miles per gallon for cars and light-duty trucks by 2025 as part of an effort to decrease the country’s reliance on oil and help fight global warming.

The DOT’s CAFE standards were set in tandem with the Environmental Protection Agency, which argues that raising CAFE standards will result in more carbon dioxide emissions being offset, helping the climate.

In February, Obama issued an executive order for the DOT and EPA to start establishing fuel-economy standards for medium and heavy-duty trucks, building on existing CAFE standards set for 2018. Obama said new fuel-economy rules would save drivers $50 billion in fuel costs and reduce oil consumption by 530 million barrels.

Obama’s new transportation bill would use billions of taxpayer dollars to fund new transportation and infrastructure projects and enforcing regulations. For example, the bill would allow federal regulators to increase penalties to companies that don’t recall their vehicles quickly enough.

“As the nation’s top regulator of the automotive industry, we hold manufacturers accountable for defect and compliance issues regarding their products and are seeking to further our ability to do so in the future, including increasing civil penalty limits nearly 10 times to $300 million,” said David Friedman, NHTSA’s acting administrator.

This, of course, is in addition to NHTSA’s authority to enter the premises of dealerships to make sure vehicles are in compliance with federal law. The bill allows federal officials to “enter and inspect with reasonable promptness premises in which a motor vehicle or motor vehicle equipment is manufactured, held for introduction in interstate commerce, or held for sale after introduction in interstate commerce” in order to “inspect with reasonable promptness that vehicle or equipment.” Federal officials may also “impound for not more than 72 hours that vehicle or equipment.”

“This change in President Obama’s new transportation bill, amends the part of the statute that has long given the agency authority to inspect records and obtain information from persons regulated under the CAFE, [medium-duty and heavy-duty] fuel efficiency, and new vehicle fuel economy labeling programs,” NHTSA told TheDCNF.

“Dealers are not directly subject to fuel economy requirements – fuel economy requirements apply to manufacturers of new vehicles,” NHTSA added.

Read more: http://dailycaller.com/2014/05/01/federal-regulators-could-be-empowered-to-enter-private-property-to-inspect-vehicle-fuel-economy/#ixzz30UwkZet7

Contempt vote set for next week for Lois Lerner in Congress’ IRS probe

Contempt vote set for next week for Lois Lerner in Congress' IRS probe

House Republicans announced Thursday they plan to hold a vote next week on whether to hold a former top Internal Revenue Service official in contempt of Congress for refusing to testify about her role in a pattern of unfairly scrutinizing conservative groups.

Lois Lerner, who headed the tax exempt oversight office of the IRS, has refused to testify before a House oversight panel, despite offering a lengthy statement in her own defense during a public hearing last year.

Republicans believe Lerner is withholding information about the role Washington, D.C., officials played in the targeting, which singled out groups with names that suggested affiliation with the Tea Party.

Republicans believe Lerner waived her right to avoid self incrimination by defending before a congressional committee and they are demanding she testify.

Lerner’s lawyers tried to negotiate a deal this week that would spare Lerner a contempt vote if she talked with House GOP leaders. But GOP leaders rejected the overtures and said Lerner must provide testimony before a public hearing of the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee in order to escape a contempt vote.

Lerner has not agreed to those terms and on Thursday afternoon, House Majority Leader Eric Cantor, a Virginia Republican, announced the contempt vote is scheduled for next week.

The vote will come in the form of a privileged resolution, Cantor said, to hold Lerner “in contempt of Congress for refusal to comply with the subpoena issued by the Committee on Oversight and Government Reform.”

Barring a last minute agreement with Lerner, the GOP-led House is all but guaranteed to vote to hold her in contempt. Approval of the contempt resolution will trigger a referral to the Justice Department, which will have to investigate whether Lerner broke the law by remaining silent.

The Justice Department is headed by U.S Attorney General Eric Holder, who is no fan of the GOP oversight panel and who has also been held in contempt of Congress for refusing to turn over subpoenaed documents connected to the botched federal gunrunning operation known as Fast and Furious.

The Justice Department has essentially ignored the Holder contempt vote but a court is weighing a civil contempt lawsuit filed by House Republicans aimed at forcing the Justice Department to hand over the requested documents.

Justice Dept. Launches Covert Sanctions Against Gun Owners

Media denial is part of disinformation campaign

Kit Daniels
May 1, 2014

The U.S. Department of Justice is currently attacking the Second Amendment by fiat while constantly denying its abuses despite clear evidence to the contrary.

Yesterday we revealed that the Justice Dept. is causing banks to fear doing business with legal gun dealers due to Operation Choke Point, a joint program between the DOJ, FDIC and the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau targeting “high-risk activities,” of which firearm sales is also listed.

“Federal law enforcers are targeting merchant categories like payday lenders, ammunition and tobacco sales, and telemarketers – but not merely by pursuing those merchants directly,” Jason Oxman, the CEO of the Electronic Transactions Association, wrote on the subject. “Rather, Operation Choke Point is flooding payments companies that provide processing service to those industries with subpoenas, civil investigative demands, and other burdensome and costly legal demands.”

Oxman explained the superficial logic behind Operation Choke Point: by increasing the legal and compliance costs of serving “disfavored merchant categories,” financial institutions will “simply stop providing service to such merchants.”

“And it’s working – payments companies across the country are cutting off service to categories of merchants that – although providing a legal service – are creating the potential for significant financial and reputational harm as law enforcement publicizes its activities,” he added.

Last month, BitPay, a U.S.-based bitcoin processor, refused to do business with gun dealer Michael Cargill of Central Texas Gunworks due to its Terms of Service which excludes merchants involved in firearm sales, ponzi schemes, “get rich quick” programs, “money service businesses” (such as payday loans), gambling and others which are all listed in the FDIC document.

Prominent financial have, however, come out and opposed the program, such as Frank Keating, the CEO of the American Banker Associated, who explained his opposition to the program in the Wall Street Journal.

“Unfortunately, the strategy is legally dubious,” he wrote. “[The] Justice [Dept.] is pressuring banks to shut down accounts without pressing charges against a merchant or even establishing that the merchant broke the law.”

Last August, 31 members of Congress became aware of Operation Choke Point and sent a letter to the Justice Dept. asking for information on the program, stating that it “has come to our attention that the DOJ and the FDIC are leading a joint effort that according to a DOJ official is intended to ‘change the structures within the financial system … choking [online short-term lenders] off from the very air they need to survive,’” in reference to payday lenders listed as a “high-risk activity” alongside firearm sales in the FDIC document.

They also warned that the agencies were acting outside of their congressional mandate and without statutory authority.

The DOJ, however, refused to answer any questions about the program.

But Justice Dept. trial attorney Joel M. Sweet provided specific details on the program during a FDIC-sponsored presentation to bank examiners, which clearly indicates that both the DOJ and FDIC are scrutinizing firearm sales so severely that banks will shy away from the burdensome demands as Oxman indicated.

It’s no surprise that Operation Choke Point came into existence during Eric Holder’s reign as Attorney General, who famously said in 1995 that he wanted to “brainwash people into thinking about guns in a vastly different way.”

Holder has only increased such rhetoric since then and is undoubtedly one of the most anti-gun politicians inside the beltway.

Only a few weeks ago, for example, he suggested that gun owners should be forced to wear “smart gun” bracelets, which would render firearms much less reliable in defensive use.

Holder is also one of the most corrupt bureaucrats as well. When his unconstitutional abuses are exposed, it is common for Holder to deny that they are taking place, even if the evidence is in plain view.

For one, Holder denied the cover-up behind Operation Fast and Furious, the DOJ program in which the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms purposely allowed firearms to end up in the hands of Mexican drug cartels in a failed effort to catch them.

But he was later held in contempt of Congress for refusing to release thousands of internal Justice Dept. documents in response to a subpoena. Even President Obama invoked executive privilege to prevent the documents from being released.

Holder also denied knowing that a top Obama supporter, DOJ trial attorney Barbara Bosserman, was leading the investigation into the IRS targeting of conservative groups despite the fact that Bosserman visited the White House for over seven hours.

An anonymous Justice Dept. source told Fox News that it was “extraordinary” for the White House to specifically invite a career employee to come visit the president and that her attendance had to be cleared by higher-ups at the DOJ.

And in the DOJ’s persecution of journalist James Rosen, Holder said that he wasn’t involved in the “potential prosecution of the press for the disclosure of material,” even though his own department confirmed that Holder approved the search warrant for Rosen’s emails.

It is a common tactic for the corrupt to keep repeating lies and denying their abuses over and over again until they appear to be honest, especially to the mainstream media.

“If you tell a lie that’s big enough, and you tell it often enough, people will believe you are telling the truth, even when what you are saying is total crap,” author and actor Richard Belzer wrote.

This article was posted: Thursday, May 1, 2014 at 11:38 am