UNM Grants New Permit to Occupiers After ACLU Intervention

from newmexicoindependent.com -University of New Mexico administrators have issued a new permit for members of the “99 percent” movement to protest at Yale Park, which is on UNM’s campus. The permit was granted after the ACLU of New Mexico said they would file an injunction against UNM to allow (Un)occupy Albuquerque to exercise their First Amendment rights in a public space. Last week, police evicted the “99 percenters” from Yale Park, and arrested over two dozen protesters who peacefully resisted the eviction after UNM refused to renew the permit for the protest site.  More News New Mexico

Drug Overdose Deaths Highest in NM

From washingtonpost.com -Deaths from drug overdoses, particularly prescription painkillers, increased significantly over a decade, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported. In 2008, 36,450 people died of drug overdoses — a national rate of nearly 12 per 100,000 people.States with the highest rates for fatal drug overdoses: 1. New Mexico, 27 - 2. West Virginia, 25.8 - 3. Nevada, 19.6  More News New Mexico


Obama's Secrets

From latimes.com - One of the most disappointing attributes of the Obama administration has been its proclivity for secrecy. The president who committed himself to "an unprecedented level of openness in government" has followed the example of his predecessor by invoking the "state secrets" privilege to derail litigation about government misdeeds in the war on terror. He has refused to release the administration's secret interpretation of the Patriot Act, which two senators have described as alarming. now his Justice Department has proposed to allow government agencies to lie about the existence of documents being sought under the Freedom of Information Act, or FOIA.  More News New Mexico

Another $118.5 Million "Investment"

Joe Biden at EnerDel
Politico - An advanced battery manufacturer that was awarded millions in federal stimulus dollars is now in financial hot water and is being closely monitored by the Energy Department. New York-based Ener1 received a $118.5 million grant to expand its manufacturing operations in Indianapolis, Ind., run by a subsidiary EnerDel, which received a visit from Vice President Joe Biden earlier this year. But NASDAQ pulled the firm from trading Friday for failing to file its most recent quarterly report on time. Ener1 also let go of its chairman, Charles Gassenheimer, late last month.
Now DOE says it's watching the company. "The department is closely monitoring the status of the company," DOE spokesman Damien LaVera said in an email Monday. "So far $55 million of the grant has been paid out to EnerDel," he added. "Any additional funds received from the government would need to be matched dollar for dollar with their own investment."
"This is one of 30 new advanced battery and electric vehicle component plants that the administration has invested in across the country, creating the potential for tens of thousands of direct and indirect jobs," LaVera said. "The U.S. will have increased our capacity to produce electric-drive vehicles batteries from virtually zero in 2008 up to 500,000 per year in 2015. Read full story here: News New Mexico


No Taxpayer Backstops, Corzine Crashes MF Global

Jon Corzine
NY Daily News - He ran one of Wall Street’s most powerful investment banks and used to live in the New Jersey governor’s mansion. Now he’s in the throes of one of the largest bankruptcy filings in U.S. history. The curtain on the third act of ex-Jersey Gov. Jon Corzine, 64, came down with a thud Monday as the Wall Street firm he took over just a year ago filed for bankruptcy. MF Global, the brokerage firm Corzine tried to turn into his latest power base, was forced to file for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection after a last-ditch effort to sell itself to Interactive Brokers Group fell apart. The firm’s spectacular demise — it listed $39.68 billion in liabilities — is a harsh setback and will likely mean the end of the road for Corzine’s short-lived resurgence. “It will be harder to come back from this than from losing a New Jersey gubernatorial election,” said Uri Landesman, president of Manhattan hedge fund Platinum Partners. Corzine took over MF Global in March of last year with a mission to turn the sleepy brokerage firm into a mini Goldman Sachs, the firm he headed from 1994 to 1999. Read full story here: News New Mexico


Room and Board for Eight Roosters: $3,600 a Month

Santa Fe New Mexican - The roosters will live to crow another day. That means Santa Fe County taxpayers, at least for now, remain on the hook for about $120 a day to house eight birds seized as evidence during a July 2010 cockfighting bust that still hasn't come to trial. State District Judge Michael Vigil on Monday denied a prosecutor's motion to euthanize roosters removed from the La Cienega home of 27-year-old Raul Trinidad-Enriquez. "The remaining birds should be put down and frozen for evidentiary purposes," Deputy District Attorney Regina Ryanczak wrote in a "Motion for destruction of seized roosters/cocks" filed Oct. 17. "The expense of keeping the birds alive is substantial to the county and unnecessary given that the animals can be preserved by freezing," the motion states. Trinidad-Enriquez's attorney, Augustine Rodriguez, said killing his client's birds would be ridiculous. "Those are his animals, and he should have a right to keep them alive," Rodriguez told Vigil. The attorney added that these are valuable roosters, ranging in value from $300 to $1,500. Read full story here: News New Mexico

Ex-officers seek to stop traffic grants

From the El Paso Times - By Daniel Borunda -Five former El Paso police officers have filed a request for an injunction against city officials, alleging police have an illegal quota system for traffic tickets. The ex-officers claim they were forced to resign, but City Manager Joyce Wilson said the officers resigned when faced with termination linked to allegations of falsified time sheets. The petition for an injunction was filed last week in the 34th District Court and seeks to stop the El Paso Police Department from using state traffic enforcement grants and alleges that a quota system is being used. Each officer was with the department for more than 10 years until their resignations in late August and September. They are represented by lawyers Stuart Leeds and Theresa Caballero. Leeds and Caballero provided the El Paso Times with a copy of an internal police email where a traffic sergeant complains to officers that not enough citations are being issued as part of a Click-It-or-Ticket seat-belt enforcement grant. The May 26 email by Sgt. Jack Matthews of the Traffic Division stated "the performance standard set forth in the grant is a minimum of three seat-belt violations per hour of work per officer. If you think that you cannot meet this goal during your five-hour shift, then do not work the grant ... those that do not produce what is required will not be considered to work any traffic-related grants in the future." Leeds said the email is proof that a quota system, though using a different name, is used by the Police Department in violation of state law. Read more

Wall Street Journal Under Attack

Richard Muller
Capitol Report New Mexico - The climate scientist who has caused an uproar by writing a recent global warming article in the opinion section of The Wall Street Journal told Capitol Report New Mexico on Monday (Oct. 31) he probably would not have written the article if he had known the Journal would change the headline of the piece. “The Wall Street Journal article, they changed it, they changed the title,” Richard Muller said while attending a conference on global and regional climate change in Santa Fe. “My title was, ‘Let’s cool the warming debate.’ They changed it to ‘An end of skepticism.’ That was not me, they did not seek my approval.” I followed up: “So you disagree with that?” Muller: “Oh yeah. It doesn’t represent the article. If you read the article you’ll find that it doesn’t say what that title says. That was their contribution.” Read full story here: News New Mexico

Commentary: No more junk economics

From NM Politics.net - After watching and listening to economists and politicians ride the media merry-go-round, espousing their economic recovery plans and sounding like freshman economics teachers or Madison Avenue ad executives, I couldn’t stand it anymore. I turned off the television set and thought about what’s wrong with all their arguments, whether it’s stimulus-based deficit spending, 9-9-9, or 20-20 in 2020. Then it came to me: What’s wrong is that the economic theory we practice today is not science, though we insist it be presented as such. It’s more like art – not the paint-by-numbers variety, but a traditional school of art like realism that depends on a few constants: a stable, unchanging motif; suspension of conscious analytical judgment (allowing only the eye and not the mind to judge the depiction of reality); and the use of dependable tools like the right brushes and paint or, as in the case of the marketplace, interest rates, taxes, incentives, investments, etc. Read more

Occupy Las Cruces

Protesters pitched tents in Branigan Park just across the street from Las Cruces City Police Headquarters over the weekend and remained there as late as Monday afternoon despite a city ordinance against sleeping in public parks. The new city hall building is pictured in the background behind the protesters tents.

"Clinton's Advice to Cain"


Barela and Steinborn Weigh Options

Jon Barela
NMPolitics - The playing fields are set for many 2012 U.S. House and Senate races across the nation, but the dynamics might still change dramatically in the 1st and 2nd congressional district races in New Mexico. Jon Barela, the Republican Party’s 2010 nominee for the Albuquerque-area 1st Congressional District seat, confirmed Friday that he’s still considering making another attempt at winning the seat next year.
Jeff Steinborn
And former State Rep. Jeff Steinborn, D-Las Cruces, confirmed Friday that he’s seriously considering running against U.S. Rep. Steve Pearce, the Republican who represents the Southern New Mexico 2nd Congressional District. Steinborn said that’s not the only race he’s looking at. The entrance of either into a congressional race would reshape that contest. Read full story here: News New Mexico