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Arizona Republic: Border Walls Are for Suckers, Donald Trump

By Lndia Valdez
Arizona Republica

The news brings us two recent examples of why border walls don’t work. Can someone alert Donald Trump?

Exhibit A comes from the Border Patrol, which issued a press release April 6 asking people to be on the lookout for drones.

“The Yuma Sector Border Patrol has recently encountered small remote controlled aircraft, commonly referred to as drones, being used to smuggle drugs into the United States. The drones vary in size, but are commonly between 2 to 4 feet wide,” it says.

“Drones have been observed primarily in the San Luis area,” the press release continues. “They are known to carry illegal contraband into the U.S. where it is dropped and picked up by smugglers north of the border.”

They included a picture of a drone so everyone would know what to look for. No word on whether the drone in the picture was one captured at the border.

Here’s the rub: The Yuma Sector is the go-to place when border-hawk politicians want to point to a place where fencing has led to “operational control.”

Guess what? The smugglers figured out a way over.

Exhibit B in this tutorial on why walls don’t work comes from a widely viewed video showing would-be smugglers easily scaling a border fence – in full view of Border Patrol agents – then skedaddling back into Mexico when they realize they were being filmed, according to the Associated Press.

Border Patrol spokesman Mark Landess told AP it’s not uncommon for smugglers to scale the steel fence, especially around Nogales, which is a busy drug-smuggling corridor.

To read more click here. 

Congressman Urges Passage of ATF Enforcement Act to End Gun Hypocrisy

gunsBy Rep. Donald S. Beyer Jr.
for Washington Post

Those who oppose gun safety legislation often contend that the president and Congress should enforce existing gun laws before considering any new ones. National Rifle Association President Wayne LaPierre has said that under current federal law, President Obama “could take every felon with a gun, drug dealer with a gun, and criminal gang banger with a gun off the streets tomorrow and lock ’em up for five years or more”; House Judiciary Committee Chairman Bob Goodlatte (R-Va.), who holds great power over whether gun legislation sees the light of day, has said that “the federal government is not doing the job they should be doing in enforcing our current gun laws.”

We should call their bluff. The truth is that Congress routinely blocks the power of the federal agency responsible for overseeing and investigating firearms sales: the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF). The ATF is unable to carry out its mission because of the multiple obstacles placed in its path. For example, a 2004 budget amendment blocked the agency from providing data on the tracing of guns used in crimes for any state license revocation action or civil lawsuit. Gun-trace data are critically important for sourcing illegally trafficked firearms and identifying corrupt gun dealers. Another amendment that year banned any requirement that gun dealers keep a physical inventory of their wares. In 2012, Congress said that the ATF couldn’t deny applications to import any shotgun simply because it lacked a sporting purpose. The list goes on.

So what if we didn’t pass new gun safety laws, but instead simply returned to the ATF the authority and autonomy to fully perform its duties? What if this key agency were enabled “to protect communities from violent criminals . . . the illegal use and trafficking of firearms . . . [and] acts of terrorism,” as its mission statement reads, without interference?

Tuesday I will introduce the ATF Enforcement Act, which would restore the agency’s ability to enforce existing gun laws by removing legislative limitations on its operations, enforcement and day-to-day functions. My bill would also allow the person picked to be ATF director to bypass the Senate confirmation process by moving the appointment power to the attorney general. For years, congressional allies of the gun lobby have blocked nominees by both Democratic and Republican presidents. Only one nominee has been confirmed since the position was made subject to Senate approval in 2006.

DEA Investigating 8 Fatal Overdoses of Fentanyl in Sacramento County

pillsBy Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

The DEA is investigating eight fatal overdoses related to the painkiller fentanyl in Sacramento County over the past month.

“People are getting the message (about the dangers of fentanyl),” Sacramento County Public Health Officer Dr. Olivia Kasirye told the Sacramento Bee. “The trend we are seeing is very hopeful, but people need to be careful and should not be taking pills that are not from a credible place like a pharmacy.”

Using dozens of investigators, the DEA is trying to track down the sale of the fentanyl pills, which “were masquerading” as other more mild painkillers.

“We are making progress,” said Casey Rettig, a DEA special agent based in San Francisco, who declined to offer more specifics.

The overdoses were first reported on March 23.

Other Stories of Interest

President Obama Pledges His Administration Won’t Protect Clinton During Investigation

obama1By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

President Obama pledged Sunday that his administration would not protect Hillary Clinton “in any way” during the investigation of her use of a private e-mail while she she was secretary of state.

“I can guarantee that,” Obama said in an interview on “Fox News Sunday.

“And not because I give Attorney General (Loretta) Lynch a directive; that is institutionally how we have always operated. I do not talk to the Attorney General about pending investigations. I do not talk to FBI directors about pending investigations. We have a strict line, and always have maintained it,” Obama added. “I guarantee that there is no political influence in any investigation conducted by the Justice Department, or the FBI, not just in this case, but in any case.”

He added: “Nobody gets treated differently when it comes to the Justice Department. Because nobody is above the law.”

Obama also said he doesn’t believe Clinton risked national security by using a private server.

“I continue to believe that she has not jeopardized America’s national security. Now what I’ve also said is that — and she has acknowledged — that there’s a carelessness, in terms of managing e-mails, that she has owned, and she recognizes,” Obama said. “But I also think it is important to keep this in perspective. This is somebody who has served her country for four years as secretary of state, and did an outstanding job. And no one has suggested that in some ways, as a consequence of how she’s handled e-mails … that detracted from her excellent ability to carry out her duties.”

Jilted Lover on FBI’s Most Wanted List Captured in Mexico

Brenda Delgado, 33.

Brenda Delgado, 33.

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

A 33-year-old Dallas woman who was placed on the FBI’s Most Wanted list last week after she was indicted on capital murder charges has been captured in Mexico.

Now the U.S. has 60 days to formally request the extradition of Brenda Delgado, who is accused of arranging the murder of a dentist who was dating her ex-boyfriend, Fox News reports. 

Mexican officials captured Delgado in the city of Torreon.

A Mexican official said it would take two to 12 months to rule on extraditing the woman.

Delgado is accused of giving Kristopher Ledell Love drugs and money in exchange for killing Kendra Hatcher on Sept. 2. A drug cartel allegedly helped provide the money and drugs.

Authorities said Delgado was motivated by jealousy of Hatcher, who was dating Delgado’s ex-boyfriend.

Love was arrested and faces a state capital murder charge and a federal weapons charge.

Ceremony Scheduled Today for 30th Anniversary of Bloody Florida Shootout with FBI

FBI agents Jerry L. Dove (left) and Benjamin P. Grogan were killed.

FBI agents Jerry L. Dove (left) and Benjamin P. Grogan were killed.

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

Today is the 30th anniversary of a bloody South Florida shootout that left two FBI agents dead and another five agents wounded.

The FBI will mark the anniversary today as Director James Comey plans to speak at a ceremony at the bureau’ office in Miramar, NBC2 reports. 

The shootout with bank robbers occurred in the Miami suburb of Pinecrest on April 11, 1986.

Agents Jerry L. Dove and Benjamin P. Grogan were killed, and so were the robber suspects, William Russell Matix and Michael Lee Platt.

The FBI agents found themselves inadequately armed to fight off the robbers’ heavy fire, prompting the bureau to begin using more powerful handguns.   

CIA Director Says His Agency Would Not Resume Torture, Despite GOP Rhetoric

CIA Director John Brennan

CIA Director John Brennan

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

CIA Director John Brennan said on Sunday that his agency would not resort to torturing terrorism suspects despite rhetoric from GOP presidential hopefuls Donald Trump and Ted Cruz.

“I will not agree to carry out some of these tactics and techniques I’ve heard bandied about because this institution needs to endure,”Brennan told NBC News.

Trump and Cruz have advocated using waterboarding and other torture techniques against terrorism suspects.

“If they could expand the laws, I would do a lot more than waterboarding. You have to get the information from people,” Trump said after the Brussels terrorist attacks.

Democratic presidential candidates Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders said they would not resort to torture.

When asked about waterboarding Sunday, Brennan responded, “I would not agree to having any CIA officer carrying out waterboarding again.”

FBI Investigates Theft of Andy Warhol’s Iconic Screen Prints of Campbell’s Soup Cans

Campbells_Soup_Cans_andy warholBy Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

The FBI is investigating the theft of Andy Warhol’s screen prints of the iconic Campbell’s soup can from the Springfield Art Museum in Missouri.

Springfield Police said the break-in occurred last week, when the museum was exhibiting “The Electric Garden of Our Minds: British/American Pop,” WTOP reports. 

The 1968 screen prints are worth more than $30,000 each.

“I can’t believe that would happen,” local artist Pam RuBert said. “I mean, you think of Springfield as the kind of place that this doesn’t happen in. I guess it shows the value of art and that this can happen anywhere.”

Other Stories of Interest