White House Vows Funding for Border Wall, Just Not Now

April 30, 2017 Leave a comment

(The Daily Signal) Congress plans to pass a final spending bill to keep the government running beyond the next week, but without funding for a border wall. The White House, however, says it will demand money for President Donald Trump’s signature campaign issue in next year’s budget plan.

GOP Leaders Dropping Border Wall Funds, Says Report

“The president is committed to having a physical border wall. That is not to be doubted,” Helen Aguirre Ferré, White House media affairs director, told The Daily Signal in an interview Friday, adding:

The funding didn’t have to be at this particular point in time, when we need a continuing resolution when it comes to the budget, but it’s definitely going to be presented by September, when we have to have the budget going forward. I don’t think anybody should doubt that this is something that is going to be pressed on.

The current fiscal year runs through Sept. 30. Congress has not added any funds for that budget year specifically for a wall along the Mexico-U.S. border.

Trump’s proposal for fiscal year 2018, which begins Oct. 1, includes a $1.5 billion down payment on the wall. Office of Management and Budget Director Mick Mulvaney said in March that another $2.8 billion likely would go into funding the wall the next fiscal year.

Senate Minority Leader Charles Schumer, D-N.Y., had threatened a government shutdown if any funding in the spending bill for the current fiscal year goes toward construction of a border wall.

On Friday, the House and Senate passed a measure that keeps the government running for another week while it works on a $1 trillion package to keep the government running through September. Otherwise, the money would have run out at midnight….

Original Source

Ohio Muslim Terrorist Refuses To Pledge On Bible In Court, Racking Up 15 Years In Prison For Actions

April 30, 2017 Leave a comment

Terrence McNeil takes a plea deal that ends in 15-20 years of prison time for social media threats.

Terrorist Terrence McNeil finally got his day in court. He was accused of posting files to his social media accounts in 2015 that contained the names and addresses of U.S. military personnel. The posts included instructions to kill these service members. Oddly enough, his social media activity was not the strangest part of the court appearance.

As McNeil prepared to take a plea deal, the court proceedings stopped when he refused to be sworn in. During a standard court action, those entering a plea or testifying are asked to swear to the truthfulness of their statements. McNeil was instructed to raise his right hand to be sworn in, but he refused. At that point, he told the judge he could not swear to anyone besides Allah.

The judge allowed McNeil to swear on Allah that the statement was true. He went on to accept a plea for the federal charges. He had declined several other plea offers but was swayed to take this one to avoid going to trial finally. His plea means he will serve between 15 and 20 years in federal prison. He was facing life in jail if he went to trial.

In a prior court appearance on June 28, 2016, McNeil was ordered to undergo a psychiatric evaluation by U.S. District Judge Dan Polster. This was tied to the fact that when Judge Polster advised McNeil that he was possibly facing life in prison, McNeil visibly laughed. According to the court transcript, the two then had a quick exchange that left Judge Polster questioning McNeil’s ability to stand trial.

The transcript showed:

“You find that funny?” Polster asked McNeil.

 

“No, I don’t find it funny. I just don’t understand it. I don’t understand why I’m here in the first place,” McNeil, 23, responded.”

During that court proceeding, the judge also discussed the possibility of McNeil and his attorney working on a plea deal. He was advised that McNeil saw no reason to even consider the option. According to a statement made by McNeil at the time:

“If you were accused of something you didn’t do, would you fight for it or not? Any sane person would fight for it, especially if they knew down in their heart they’re innocent. I understand the consequences, but I don’t think they’re warranted at all.”

The full sentencing will occur in August. McNeil will remain in the custody of the U.S. Marshall until that court date. According to prosecutors, his crimes are tied to the following social media activity:

“McNeil used several social-media websites to profess his support for ISIS, prosecutors said. A file he posted Sept. 24, 2015, on his Tumblr page had the header “Islamic State Hacking Division,” followed by “Target: United States Military” and “Leak: Addresses of 100 U.S. Military Personnel.”

The file is a .gif, which allows multiple images to be looped. The text of the first file encouraged people who saw it to kill the military members “in their own lands, behead them in their own homes, stab them to death as they walk their streets thinking that they are safe…”

From these social media postings, McNeil committed several crimes. His plea agreement meant he admitted he was guilty of “…five counts of solicitation to commit a crime of violence and five counts of making threatening interstate communications.”

The social media postings were very similar to the “kill list” created by hacker Junaid Hussain. Hussain was ultimately murdered by a U.S. drone for his efforts to carry out an ISIS mission of killing U.S service members. He also used the internet to recruit local people in the U.S. His kill list included information about 1,300 Americans.

Advertisement

While Hussain did his hacking from outside of the United States, McNeil was working within the United States. He is from Akron, Ohio. His threats were against other Americans and included asking others to attack military members. The prosecution of this severe case served as a warning to others using the internet to work for ISIS.

According to acting U.S. Attorney David Sierleja:

“This case demonstrates the challenges faced by law enforcement in confronting global terrorism. It highlights the dangers posed by terrorists committed to carrying out attacks here in the United States and their use of social media to accomplish their mission. The message should be clear that individuals who engage in this behavior will be aggressively prosecuted.”

One of the scariest things about this case is the ease at which McNeil blended into his community while supporting ISIS. At the time of his arrest, McNeil was working at a local hospital. He was hired to work in non-patient care at Akron City Hospital. His boss reported no issues at work and he had passed a background screening before being hired.,

When he was arrested by federal agents, the 25-year-old was living with his mother. Neighbors at the Woods of Fairlawn Apartments expressed their fear of this unknown threat. One resident, Lakhia Williams, stated:

“You never would suspect anything like that around here. You’re not safe anywhere. You never know what people are doing.”

Mexico Assembles Team for All-Out Legal Assault on Border Wall

April 30, 2017 Leave a comment

Mexico City (CNSNews.com) – Mexico’s foreign secretary is planning an all-out legal assault on any future construction of a border wall by the U.S., to include filing suits in U.S. and international courts over possible environmental, human rights and international treaty violations.

Foreign Secretary Luis Videgaray told congressional leaders here that Mexico will neither pay for nor cooperate with the wall proposed by the Trump administration, under any circumstances.

He called the wall proposal a “profoundly unfriendly” and “hostile” act.

“We won’t contribute in any manner, directly or indirectly or financially or in any other form to the continuation of a construction of a wall or any other type of physical barrier between our two countries,” Videgaray told members of the congressional foreign relations committee.

He said his office has assigned “significant human resources” to assemble a plan to fight the wall on every single possible violation of international treaties.

If the U.S., in the process of building a wall, violates any treaties including environmental treaties, Videgaray said Mexico would exercise it’s legal rights to the maximum, including filing suits in U.S. and international courts.

He cited specifically treaties pertaining to the Rio Grande and the Colorado River.

Videgaray listed potential rights violations the construction of a wall might entail, including private property, cultural, human, and anti-discrimination rights.

His remarks contained additional warnings about future bilateral relations.

Any attempt by the U.S. to tax remittances sent home by Mexicans in the U.S. would threaten negotiations on any other matters, Videgaray said.

“Remittances are not only a flow of foreign exchange from the macroeconomic point of view, but as we all know it is a fundamental support for many families, particularly low-income families,” he said, adding that a tax on the payments would be a “breaking point in any dialogue on other issues.”

In response to lawmakers’ questions, Videgaray confirmed that the idea of requiring American tourists to obtain a visa to enter Mexico merits consideration. No visa is currently required.

He warned, however, that a visa requirement could harm Mexico’s tourism industry.

Instead, Videgaray promised his office would explore the idea of charging an entry fee instead.

He said Mexico will continue to follow through on bilateral cooperation agreements with the U.S., including security cooperation, but will not enter into any new agreements for the time being.

If negotiations with the U.S. on migration, border and commerce issues were not dealt with satisfactorily for Mexico, however, all existing bilateral cooperation will be reviewed.

White House budget director Mick Mulvaney confirmed this week that President Trump would sign a spending bill – needed to fund the federal government through September and avoid a shutdown at the end of this week – that does not include funds for the wall. White

House press secretary Sean Spicer maintained that the president’s priorities on the matter have not changed, and in a Tuesday tweet, Trump repeated his promise to build the wall.

“Don’t let the fake media tell you that I have changed my position on the WALL,” he said. “It will get built and help stop drugs, human trafficking etc.”

Glenn Johnson, founder of the 15-year-old Arizona group American Border Patrol, told CNSNews.com that money to repair existing fencing along the border is badly needed.

Spencer, who owns a ranch on the border near the town of Herford, said he prefers fencing to a wall, as a concrete wall would make it harder to see people trying to scale the barrier from the Mexican side.

“A well is opaque. You cannot see through it. It is a bad idea to build a 30-foot concrete wall that you can’t see through it,” he said. “What is to stop people on the other side from building scaffolding on that wall?”

Johnson said Trump should complete work authorized by the Secure Fence Act of 2006 signed by President George W. Bush.

John Bolton: If North Korea Gets Nuclear Missiles, ‘Iran Could Have That Capability the Next Day by Writing a Check’

April 30, 2017 Leave a comment

North Korea

On Friday’s Breitbart News Daily, former U.N. ambassador John Bolton joined SiriusXM host Alex Marlow for a look at President Trump’s first hundred days from a foreign policy and national security perspective.

Bolton said Trump’s record has been “mixed, depending on what area of the world, what particular crisis you look at, and really what point during the hundred days that you take.”

“I think in many respects the campaign rhetoric – which was very, very tough on things like the Iran nuclear deal and the North Korean nuclear threat, much of which continued into the first hundred days – is very much at risk of being subverted by the bureaucracy that the administration has not yet tamed,” he cautioned.

“There’s a significant risk that both because of some of the appointees that the president has named, and the appointees he hasn’t named – the people in the lower ranks who are the president’s eyes and ears and implementers out in the bureaucracy, particularly at the State Department, which is expert at capturing political appointees, especially from Republican administrations. If the president’s not careful, he will see his foreign policy – despite what I think his own views are – captured by the same bureaucracy that for eight years implemented the Obama foreign policy,” he elaborated.

“That’s the danger that I see. I don’t think the president has moved on some of these key national security issues as far as the press would like you to believe, or as far as the bureaucracy would like you to believe. It remains to be seen how many people in the administration can remember what they said during the campaign on some of these issues,  particularly terrorism and nuclear proliferation, as the bureaucracy nibbles away at them,” said Bolton.

“I think the president needs to be more of a disciplinarian with his subordinates and their bureaucracy,” he advised.

“I think that may be contrary to his natural instincts. I think he is an open, optimistic kind of man, and I think in the Trump Organization it was small enough that that kind of approach worked. But in the sprawling federal government, where different departments and agencies have their own cultures and their own agendas, especially in national security where they’re not friendly to Republican administrations, he needs to be tougher out there. I’m worried about what we’re going to do on Iran. I’m worried about what we’re going to do on North Korea,” Bolton said.

He warned there is “a whole range of issues where there is a real risk of creeping back to the Obama administration policy – as the poem goes, ‘not with a bang but with a whimper.’”

“Now, in other areas, I think he’s pretty much holding the line, which is why I say overall I think the performance in the first hundred days is mixed,” Bolton concluded.

Focusing on the Iran nuclear deal, Bolton recalled the State Department’s letter to Congress last week which “certified that Iran was in compliance with the Iran nuclear deal.”

“That is simply not true, in terms of their refusal to let the International Atomic Energy Agency visit key military sites, their excessive production of heavy water, their excessive enrichment of uranium, their gross disregard of the Security Council resolution and the part of the agreement dealing with ballistic missiles,” he asserted. “And those are just some of the things we know publicly. These are plain violations of the agreement. And that doesn’t count the provisions of the agreement that are so ambiguous, so poorly drafted, so open to interpretations favorable to Iran that lawyers could end up debating them for decades into the future.”

“What’s even worse is, if you read the congressional statute carefully, the reporting obligation does not require the president to make a binary decision – yes Iran is in compliance, or no Iran is not in compliance. By the statute’s own terms, it allows the president to say, ‘I am not able to certify that Iran is in compliance,’ which he would have been perfectly legitimate within his rights to do, especially given the newness of the administration,” he noted.

“Now, where did that certification come from? It came from the State Department bureaucracy. It came from the same people who negotiated the deal that was finally agreed to in the summer of 2015, and who have been protecting it, nurturing it, sheltering it for a year and a half since then. This may sound like a small point, but I’ll tell you, the proponents of the deal have taken that certification in just one week and said, ‘See, even the Trump administration says that the good old ayatollahs in Iran are complying with the deal,’” Bolton said.

“The negative implication of that, as the Trump administration then goes on to say Iran’s behavior in most material respects, as the president himself said, violates the spirit of the deal. Well, it goes beyond that. It violates the letter of the deal as well,” he contended.

“I’ve heard different stories, frankly, about whether the White House cleared that document or not, or whether – as is often the case with the bureaucracy – they come running in and say, ‘This is due on Capitol Hill at 5 P.M.! We’ve got to send it! We’ve got to send it, or we’ll be in default, we’ll be delinquent, we’ll be subject to criticism!’ So people say well, all right, I guess we’ve got to send it, and they don’t have time to think through the implications,” he said.

“This is to me a kind of textbook example, in the case of Iran, how a very strong and pro-American foreign policy just gets whittled away. It may seem like water eroding rock. It doesn’t happen in dramatic moments. But I’m just telling you, this is the way bureaucracy works, and it works to undercut especially conservative and Republican presidents,” Bolton lamented.

Breitbart News National Security Editor Frances Martel joined the conversation to ask Bolton about the deep relationship between the nuclear issues in Iran and North Korea, which are generally treated as entirely separate matters in media coverage.

“The media don’t get the connection, and that in part is because the national security bureaucracy doesn’t get, or doesn’t want to talk about, the connection,” Bolton replied, portraying it as “a classic bureaucratic example of what they call silos.”

“You’ve got the people dealing with Iran there in one silo, you’ve got the people dealing with North Korea in another silo. They might as well be on different planets,” he explained.

“But the fact is, again, from publicly available information going back 30 years, we know that the North Koreans and the Iranians have been in close cooperation on the development of ballistic missiles for that entire period. North Korea sold Iran the first SCUD missiles that were the basis for the Iranian missile program. They’ve cooperated in multiple ways since then. It makes perfectly good sense for that to happen. They’re both using the same Soviet-era SCUD missile technology for their missile programs, so they’ve got a common scientific and engineering base. Their objectives for the missile programs are exactly the same. It’s to deliver nuclear weapons, not launch communications or weather satellites. On that score, it’s just absolutely clear,” Bolton said.

“It is less clear in terms of publicly available evidence on the nuclear side, but I think there is substantial reason to believe there’s close cooperation there as well,” he continued. “The reactor that Israel destroyed in Syria in September of 2007 was being built by North Koreans. It was a clone of the North Korean Yongbyon reactor. Most people don’t think Syria had the financial wherewithal to pay for building that kind of reactor, and the North Koreans don’t do anything for free, so where did the money come from? I think it probably came from Iran.”

“I think there are a lot of other connections that have been noted, the Iranian scientists in North Korea and vice versa. Forget the Iran nuclear deal for a minute – it’s entirely foreseeable that the day North Korea gets the capability to drop a nuclear warhead on the United States via ballistic missile, Iran could have that capability the next day by writing a check in the right amount of money, so this relationship is extremely important,” he warned.

“On North Korea itself, the administration started off again with a very tough line on this – and yet yesterday, in an interview with Fox News, Secretary Tillerson said he’d be willing to have bilateral discussions with North Korea. This is after saying that the Obama ‘strategic patience’ doctrine was being rejected, after saying correctly we’ve negotiated with North Korea for 25 years and it hasn’t produced anything. Now we’re back to negotiating with North Korea and pressuring China to pressure North Korea. This is like Year 26 of the same failed policy,” Bolton complained.

“Now, I don’t want to overstate that, the secretary might have misstated what he implied by that, and certainly China has done a few things in the past couple of weeks that look encouraging. But I’ve been around that track before. When the heat gets too great, the Chinese pat the North Koreans on the fanny and say, ‘bad boys!’ They take some steps that appear to put pressure on North Korea, and then they hope that Americans with our famously short attention spans turn away, and the heat goes off, and then they quietly go back to business as before the particular crisis,” he said.

Bolton urged policymakers to remember that North Korea sees nuclear weapons as a tool for implementing a dangerous long-term policy agenda, which they would not abandon even if their nuclear aspirations were decisively thwarted.

“I think the same is true for the ayatollahs in Iran,” he added. “So when you say to Kim Jong-un and his generals, ‘Give up your nuclear weapons,’ what they hear is ‘give up up your regime, and maybe give up your lives, while we’re on the subject.’ They’re not going to do it.”

“We have tried diplomacy, persuasion. We have tried sanctions, coercion, in differing measures, different combinations, for 26 years. It just hasn’t worked,” he said.

“That’s why I think the only long-term solution is reunifying the two Koreas,” Bolton offered. “I think we could explain to China why that’s in their best interest. The Chinese say they don’t want North Korea to have a nuclear weapon because it would be destabilizing in East Asia. That’s code for saying they’re afraid Japan is going to get nuclear weapons. But they have not taken the steps necessary in the past to pressure North Korea to give up the weapons because they understand just how frail that regime really is, and they’re worried it will collapse in an uncontrolled fashion that will cause them all kinds of problems.”

“I think there’s a deal here. I think it’s complicated and difficult to negotiate. I wish we had started 15 years ago. But we’re in a race now, because the factor that’s changed from the last 25 years to today is, North Korea this time is really very close to having the capability to miniaturize a nuclear weapon, put it under the nose cone of an ICBM, and launch the ICBM towards the United States. That’s what’s really driving people,” Bolton observed.

“Obama just watched it all happen for eight years. He’s dumped this problem on the Trump administration. But it’s also why we need a policy change. If you try in Year 26 to keep doing what you’ve done and failed to accomplish your objective, for the last 25 years – who has any reason to believe that in Year 26 you’re going to get a different result?” he asked.

Marlow asked what South Koreans thought of his unification idea.

“Many of them are not wild about it, because they look at the example of German reunification, they saw it was very costly to the West Germans,” Bolton conceded. “I think there are real differences between the two circumstances. I think in fact for South Korea this is a huge economic opportunity, to be perfectly crass about it. You’ve got a wage base in North Korea of roughly zero, so that by putting manufacturing and other facilities up there, eventually the wages in North Korea will be the same as the wages in South Korea, but not in the immediate future.”

“It is something that’s going to come anyway,” he predicted. “The division of the Korean peninsula is unnatural, just as the division of Germany was. It was always intended to be temporary until the Cold War intervened. There will be reunification one day. The issue remains, will it be accomplished in a restrained and careful fashion that works out in our interests, and maybe in the interests of China as well, or will it occur catastrophically?”

“If the United States at some point has to strike preemptively against North Korea’s nuclear capabilities, there’s every prospect that that could ignite a broader conflict on the peninsula that would be devastating all around, and would almost certainly produce the collapse of the North Korean regime. I would say to China, ‘Look, we can do this the easy way, or we can do this the hard way. Which would you rather do?’” he advised.

“That’s why I think the larger objective of reunification has to be really the policy objective because we tried to stop the nuclear program in North Korea for 25 years and we have failed. We have failed because persuasion has failed. We have failed because coercion has failed. We have failed because the combination of coercion and persuasion has failed. So now we’re going to try it again? I just hope that’s not where the State Department is going,” said Bolton.

Marlow suggested it might be difficult to reconcile the intense amount of diplomacy and economic involvement required to achieve Korean unification with President Trump’s campaign promise of an “America First” foreign policy.

“The detonation of a nuclear weapon on a major American city can really concentrate your attention,” Bolton replied. “This is putting America first. We are a global power. That’s a reality. Therefore, our interests are worldwide. South Korea and Japan are two of our biggest trading partners, and they are threatened by this erratic, irrational regime in North Korea. We are on the verge of being threatened in the United States ourselves. We’ve got inadequate defense capabilities.”

“Barack Obama gutted the national missile defense program that George Bush had started. We’d be in much better shape if we could defend ourselves against North Korean or Iranian missile launches, but we have a wholly inadequate capability at the moment. So there are a lot of challenges that the president has to face, even though – like most presidents, I suppose – he’d rather focus on domestic issues,” Bolton observed.

John Bolton is a senior fellow at the American Enterprise Institute and president of his own political action committee, BoltonPAC.

Breitbart News Daily airs on SiriusXM Patriot 125 weekdays from 6:00 a.m. to 9:00 a.m. Eastern.

Making America Great Again: Donald Trump’s 100 Days’ Success

April 30, 2017 Leave a comment

Making his bid to be the 45th President of the United States, Donald Trump promised to “Make America Great Again.” But has he delivered on his pledge?

Having proposed a huge reform agenda, some have been left disappointed by Donald Trump’s first 100 days in office. Nevertheless, recent polling data suggests that a majority of Americans believe Trump is making good on his words.

Trump Tones it Down on Twitter, Traction Slips

Here are Donald Trump’s successes since he took office in January:

Supreme Court Nominee

Donald Trump kept his promise to nominate a conservative judge to the supreme court, following the death of Justice Antonin Scalia last year.

Despite opposition from Democrats, on April 7th Neil Gorsuch was confirmed as the 113th justice of the U.S Supreme Court, which could help cement a conservative majority on the SCOTUS for decades.

Immigration

Trump’s executive order guiding immigration enforcement agencies to apprehend illegal aliens as well as hire thousands of new staff has undoubtedly helped stem the tide of illegal immigration from Mexico into the United States. In the months of January and February alone, illegal border crossings dropped by 40 percent.

Furthermore, the Trump administration is cracking down on sanctuary cities that protect illegal immigrants. Attorney General Jeff Sessions this week sent a letter to 10 cities failing to comply with federal immigration law, warning that they risk losing federal funding if they continue to do so.

As part of the crackdown, the Department of Homeland Security is also publishing a weekly list of localities refusing to cooperate, as well as the crimes committed by illegal aliens within them.

However, significant progress on Trump’s key promise to build a wall on the southern border has yet to be made.

National Security

Due to federal courts blocking Trump’s executive orders suspending Obama’s refugee program and introducing a temporary travel ban from a number of terror-prone countries, making progress on securing America’s borders from potential terror threats has been difficult.

However, Trump appears to be making good on his promise to “destroy ISIS,” with a significant increase in the number of airstrikes targeting terrorists in the Middle East, North Africa, and Afghanistan. This has been made easier by Trump expanding commanders’ targeting authorities and rolling back restrictions on military strikes put into place by the Obama administration.

The Trump administration has also signaled that it is ready to take action against the impending threat of North Korea. As tensions between both countries rise, Trump has positioned “an armada” in the Korean peninsula, while this week military officials began the installment of controversial Terminal High Altitude Area Defense (THAAD) system in South Korea, designed to protect South Korea from incoming missiles.

Trump also appears to have secured greater support from China in tackling the North Korean problem. Last week, China positioned 150,000 troops along their the North Korean border, as well as sending a fleet of fully-loaded cargo ships destined for North Korea back home. This week, China warned North Korea not to “cross the point of no return” by conducting another nuclear test.

Click here to read Kristina Wong’s ‘Trump Takes on Terrorism in His First 100 Days.’

Jobs and the economy

During his election campaign, Trump promised to bring jobs back to America, especially those from companies planning to outsource overseas. Having met with a range of business leaders, he has received assurances from companies such as Ford and Carrier Corporations to cancel their overseas plans and instead invest in America. Leading technology firms such as Apple, Amazon, Samsung, and Intel have also pledged to create thousands of new jobs in America over the coming years.

FULL STORY

Exposed: American Factory Workers Forced To Wear Diapers And Stay Dehydrated

April 30, 2017 Leave a comment

 at trueactivist.com

Poultry factory workers laugh at commercials from their companies boasting that they treat their chickens humanely while humans suffer.

Americans often hear about the horrible conditions that some factories in other countries, such as China, force on their workers, but the reality is that some factories in the United States can be just as brutal towards employees. One such example is the poultry industry, which processes millions of chickens across the country everyday, but at what cost?

In recent reports that emerged last year from Oxfam America, the U.S. chapter for a global organization whose aim is to solve poverty, social injustice, income inequality, and advocate for human rights, workers from popular poultry companies revealed the shocking truth about what they endure on a daily basis.

Perhaps the most horrible revelation is that many of the line workers wear diapers because they are repeatedly denied bathroom breaks, causing them to either urinate on themselves or invest in diapers to reduce humiliation. The top 4 poultry companies, Tyson Foods, Pilgrim’s, Perdue, and Sanderson Farms, control more than half of the poultry market and their turnover rate for employees has reached 100% in some years, meaning the workers are treated as disposable and making them more likely to do whatever it takes to keep their jobs.

“To find workers willing to do these jobs, the poultry industry exploits vulnerable people who have few other options: minorities, immigrants, and refugees—even prisoners. Because of their precarious situations, most workers are afraid to speak out or do anything that might jeopardize their jobs,” the report states.

As a result, workers avoid asking for bathroom breaks because they are afraid of being reprimanded, even if they have a special condition that would require them to take more breaks than normal. When they do ask for breaks, workers reportedly said that they were often mocked, ignored, or yelled at for eating or drinking too much. Even someone without special conditions, such as diabetes, being pregnant, or in the midst of menstruation, requires tons of water everyday to keep themselves healthy and hydrated during the grueling work. Those with the special conditions suffer even more.

“Jean, from a Tyson plant in Virginia, says that even though she’s diabetic, ‘I don’t drink any water so I won’t have to go,’” the report said.

Credit: John D. Simmons/The Charlotte Observer

Some women started off by wearing sanitary napkins so they could pee while still standing there, but this proved ineffective and now workers, both men and women, often don diapers so they can relieve themselves without leaving the line. This calls both the rights of the workers and the cleanliness of the facilities into question.

All workers that were interviewed had pseudonyms in the report, making it difficult for any of the companies named to fire or otherwise reprimand those who came forward but also making it impossible to verify whether the reports were factual. The National Chicken Council and the U.S. Poultry and Egg Association accused Oxfam America of painting the entire industry with a broad brush based on only a few testimonies and all of the companies denied the allegations, saying they have policies that include ample breaks.

Though the factory workers want to keep their jobs, they don’t want to continue being treated in this manner or constantly worrying about whether their question of visiting the bathroom will cost them their job.

“We’re not asking you to stop eating chicken. We’re simply asking to be treated as human beings,” said Bacilio Castro, a former poultry worker.

With an industry that has workers processing a whole chicken in as little as 2 seconds each and has doubled its rate of production in just 35 years, it’s no wonder the workers are suffering as a result. Some have said that they laugh at commercials where the companies say they treat their chickens humanely while they continue to treat their human employees terribly.

Residents in Pennsylvania are Sitting in Trees 24/7 to Block Construction of Gas Pipeline [Photos]

April 30, 2017 Leave a comment

Sunoco

Amando Flavio

The destruction of the environment for commercial purposes in the U.S. is not only happening in North Dakota; when the U.S. federal government forcefully seized lands belonging to the Standing Rock Sioux Tribe for the construction of the Dakota Access Oil Pipelines (DAPL).

Despite all concerns raised by activists  at the time, concerning the construction of the pipeline, Trump has gone ahead with an executive order for the project to go ahead. The project will destroy nearby environment, including sacred sites of the Standing Rock Tribe.

Sunoco

However, as all attention is on the DAPL, elsewhere in the U.S, the natural environment is being destroyed for similar commercial purposes.

Sunoco is an American petroleum and petrochemical manufacturer headquartered in Newtown Square, Pennsylvania. In February, after Trump had taken office, Sunoco was granted permits by state officials in Pennsylvania to begin its controversial construction of the Mariner East 2 natural gas liquids pipeline from southwest Pennsylvania to Marcus Hook, near Philadelphia. The pipeline, once constructed, will carry fracked gas from the Marcellus Shale in Ohio, across Pennsylvania to an export facility on the East Coast.

The 350-mile cross-state project is set to displace many landowners and farmers in Pennsylvania and neighboring state, Ohio. Landowners, together with environmentalists, objected to the project the first day it was announced.

Sunoco

According to local sources, the project was announced two years ago. Environmental activists have actually been holding rallies against the project. Especially for protesters in Delaware County in the state, they have questioned Sunoco’s assurances that the pipeline will be safe. In fact, some landowners and farmers have even refused the company’s compensation for building the pipeline on their lands.

Recently, a man named Mike Flaherty and his wife Theresa, who live in the town of Aston, narrated how they confronted what they described as “shady behavior” by Sunoco contractors. The pipeline was to go through their property, but when they asked for information about safety and property values, Sunoco immediately re-directed the pipeline to a neighbor’s property. The reluctance of Sunoco demonstrates the lack of proper safety requirements for the project. The couple were worried that a leak in the pipeline would cause a major disaster on their property and that of others, hence their confrontation with Sunoco.

“My wife and I had questions about safety, environmental concerns, and we don’t think they were answered appropriately. We said, ‘If you’re not willing to answer our questions, we’re not willing to sign your easement’. It felt like it was very high pressure,” Mike told local media StateImpact in an interview about the incident.

Sunoco

But of course, if you are dealing with a giant corporation that has the money to bribe officials, it becomes difficult. Mike and his wife only succeeded in not allowing the pipeline to pass through their property. Some people tried in the past to stop the project at the law courts, but they were unsuccessful.

The project has gained momentum in the state. And now that all efforts to stop the construction have failed, activists are using unconventional methods to bring the project to a halt.

At a place known as Camp White Pine in the state, residents and other environmental activists have launched a special operation on trees in order to scare pipeline project contractors. The protesters are actually suspending themselves from trees and are doing this on a 24-hour rotating basis.

Sunoco

According to the protesters, their goal is to prevent workers of Sunoco from clearing the natural forest to make way for the pipeline. The unusual protest is said to have attracted many residents in Huntingdon County. Other people from neighboring counties and other areas are joining this last attempt to stop the construction of the pipeline.

Sunoco

These concerned protesters are doing their best to protect the environment. But don’t be surprised to hear the government has unleashed terror on them as they did in North Dakota. If they succeed in driving away the workers, like what happened to the Standing Rock Tribe, when armed security officials unleashed batons and dogs on those who were protesting peacefully, these people could face a similar fate. We are following events in the area and will report on the latest.

%d bloggers like this: