Posts from the ‘Politics’ Category

UPDATE: Jodi Arias Trial – Prosecutor Juan Martinez gets defence expert to say murder victim Travis Alexander was a ‘human being’ really

Phoenix, Arizona – The defence expert Alyce LaViolette was on the stand again today and finally made it clear that the murder victim, Travis Alexander was indeed a ‘human being.’ Juan Martinez the prosecutor asked her and she agreed, he was a ‘human being’ and Martinez continued to try to discredit her, since he thinks she is a “human lie detector.”

The expert psychotherapist finished her $300 an hour testimony Friday, but is under a court ordered subpoena to return to court on Tuesday to discuss an (issue) that Judge Sherry K. Stephens wants to discuss with her.

Why do you think LaViolette has been ordered back to court to address an “issue” that she is aware of? Also the court has ordered an InSession (TruTV) producer to attend court next week to discuss something.

Could it possibly be the Judge wants to ask why she ‘lied’ to some of the questions she was asked by the jury?

After all, LaViolette has the opinion that sometimes lies, are not lies, there are white lies and medium lies and then real lies, in her opinion.

Arizona is one a the few states that allows jurors to ask questions and Friday they asked about 160 questions of LaViolette. In day 101 of the trial the started on January 2/2013 there have only been three defence witnesses and she had stated to a jurors question she had given evidence in court about men, “one or two times.”

After another  heated cross by prosecutor Juan Martinez, he got her to admit she actually did not give testimony in court but had filed “a report” with the court about an earlier interview she did several years ago.

Also in another surprise move juror #11 was released from duty due to an unannounced illness.  Another alternate (16 remain) will take his place, which makes two jurors released from duty since the start of the trial.

Court will resume again on Monday, but LaViolette will not appear until Tuesday because of a prior conflict on Monday.


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Jodi Arias murder trial – not one ‘yes or no questions’ today as defence asks Alyce LaViolette questions ‘what is a really good lie’

Domestic violence expert Alyce LaViolette was still on the stand today (day 9) as she was answering questions from the defence and yet prosecutor Juan Martinez didn’t miss a step trying to interrupt her answers with constant objections.

Judge Sherry K. Stephens did not fall for it and in almost all objections from Martinez she overruled his ignorant interruptions. It appears he wants her to still answer questions “his way” even though he is NOT asking the questions.

Judge Sherry K. Stephens at a ‘sidebar’

For the past four/five days while he was cross-examining LaViolette he would battle her with questions that he only wanted ‘yes or no’ answers even though she wanted to give her honest answer.

How will Juan Martinez’s questioning, objecting, bullying, fighting with the defence witnesses effect the jury in their deliberations once the case goes to the jury? It’s unlikely, but remember only one juror has to disagree with the prosecution and it would be a mistrial, and it all starts all over again.

There is no doubt Jodi Arias killed Travis Alexander, she has admitted it. The question here is, will the jury have the option to find her guilty, and yet not allow the death penalty to be imposed.

During the questioning from the defence today, LaViolette was asked “do men like Travis Alexander (the victim) have a double life?” Was again constantly challenged by Martinez.

Jennifer Willmott

Then the defence attorney Jennifer Willmott went on to ask, “given all the lies Arias has told in the past, does it cause problems in your believability?”

“No they don’t, because if Ms. Arias was a really good liar she would have planned a really good lie and she didn’t,” answered LaViolette.

Martinez objected to that asking, “give us a definition of a really good lie,” which was overruled by Judge Stephens, “the answer will stand.”

Coming up next will be jury questions, and the last round, they asked over 200.

One of the big questions will be, where was Alexander shot with the gun, in the closet or in the bathroom. And was he shot before he was stabbed or like Arias said, she stabbed him first in the bathroom.

The trial will continue tomorrow Friday and several Fridays within the next couple of months if the trial continues that long.

New Subway station finally arrives at Carlton/Parliament downtown Toronto, umm not really, just a movie prop

Click picture for an even larger view

Toronto, Canada – A new subway entrance (Midtown Blvd Station) popped up for one day downtown Toronto at Carlton/Parliament and although many thought it was thanks to Mayor Rob Ford, it was not real.

It was a fake station entrance for a new CBS/CW-TV series, Beauty and the Beast being shot in the Old Cabbagetown area and Pinewood Studios in the Portlands.

Massive gridlock on film set with paid duty cops not directing traffic while getting $65 an hour (see below)

It use to be fun having films shot in the city, but it is becoming increasingly annoying as they constantly cause horrendous traffic jams while they are shooting weekdays in the downtown area.

Toronto is still a very popular filming site for Hollywood because the crews and the Canadian Dollar are very attractive to producers. Recently the remake of  Total Recall with Colin Farrell was filmed down on the Lakeshore, and we experienced the same thing, as the roadway was closed for several days while the filming took place.

The Toronto Film Office maintains the film industry brings money to the city, and it does, many local people are used as extras in the production but they tend to demand discounted rates for anything that they buy. Car/truck rentals and hotels used for the actors are given at highly discounted rates, and they don’t buy much food because they have everything catered on site.

Caution: This is not a real subway, there are no steps

While it is still a bit fun to see them filming Hollywood style series and movies in the city, lets try and keep it to the weekends.

For larger view, click picture

And if you have to hold up traffic while they are filming, keep it to five minutes at the most. While they were filming on Parliament this week, they had 3-4 paid duty police officers, but they barely controlled traffic, as you can see at the Carlton/Parliament intersection. (above)

They would stop traffic for up to 20 minutes with no police directing traffic on the south side of Parliament, rather they were standing on the side of the road chatting and the one officer is even texting/facebooking his friends while on official duty.

Keep in mind the officers are only making $65 an hour for uniformed paid duties, and possibly they make even more on film sets. But rarely do we see them directing traffic at their paid duty locations (film or construction.) The city claims we have no money, and there is too much gravy, and the police received over $2 million last year, just for paid duties.

Alyce LaViolette (old-fashioned) witness for the defence in the Jodi Arias trial under the gun again today, ‘What’s the Webster’s definition of manipulative?’

Alyce LaViolette 49Phoenix, Arizona – Alyce LaViolette domestic violence expert getting $300 per hour was under fire again today from prosecutor Juan Martinez in the three-month first degree murder trial of Jodi Arias.

The trial has cost the State of Arizona at least $1.5 million so far up to the end of March with no end in sight.

Martinez didn’t let up for a second in trying to discredit the witness on the smallest contradiction from her notes in her assessment of Arias.

He asked “Do you even have any memory of your notes?” And then went on to ask her if she knew the “Webster’s definition of manipulative” suggesting Jodi Arias was very manipulative.

LaViolette answered, ” I haven’ been asked for a Webster’s definition.”

He went on to say Arias plays the victim all the time and doesn’t believe she was the victim of domestic violence at the hands of her murder victim, Travis Alexander.

Whenever LaViolette tried to answer any questions without a yes or no answer which Martinez always maintains he would ask Judge Sherry K. Stephens to admonish the witness, to get in line with what he wanted, and demanded.

She often tries to give complete answers and yet Martinez is not satisfied and of course must give her a scolding from the Judge. He must have had a very tough time growing up as a young man if he acted as, the ‘bully’ he appears to be in this trial.

Mr. Martinez finally cleared up the major question in this three-month trial, “Yes or no, was Mr. Alexander a man?” LaViolette answered correctly and told us “yes he was.”

This is what you are missing if you don’t watch the trial, earth shattering information about who was killed back in 2008 by Jodi Arias.

LaViolette – “If you were in my group, I would ask you to take a time-out” which was admonished by the Judge.

The trial continues tomorrow, and no doubt Martinez will continue in the same fashion. If you don’t have HLN or In Session you can watch the LIVE streaming trial online HERE remember they are 3-4 hours behind the east coast time zone.

UPDATE: Jodi Arias murder trial on HLN (nonstop coverage) Pause/LIVE – Just for commercials?

HLN-In Session complete coverage is extensive

HLN-In Session complete coverage is extensive and ratings are way up, 50%

World-wide coverage

Phoenix, ArizonaJodi  Arias, 32  is on trial for the vicious stabbing/shooting murder of mormon Travis Alexander, 30 in Arizona in 2008, and the trial is being carried by HLN (part of CNN) and they emphasize it is ‘LIVE.’

She is facing the death penalty after she has admitted killing Alexander, but she claims it was in self-defence after she stabbed him 27 times and shot him once. She is claiming battered women syndrome and an expert was on the stand today for the defence. She has been in custody since her arrest in 2008.

Last week and today, psychotherapist Alyce LaViolette (over 35 years) was testifying and prosecutor Juan Martinez asked about a seminar she gave back in 2010 about Snow White being a battered women.

She kept saying she only used that title because it was “catchy” and drew attention to her seminar, but for some reason Juan Martinez never could ‘catch’ the concept.

He actually asked her “how old were the dwarves” but she did not have an answer, since it is not real, it is a fairy tale, created by Disney.

This is probably the first high-profile trial that has been covered this way, although many have asked for it since Digital Video Recorders (DVR) came into homes in the last decade. DVR’s allow you to watch LIVE TV and pause the show like a VCR. It saves the live stream in the computer memory on the DVR and although tv stations have had this equipment for many years, it’s the first time a trial has been covered in this way.

HLN ratings are up over 50%, yikes

The trial is something you don’t want to miss, even if you don’t like trials.

There’s never a dull moment, and the best is when the prosecutor Juan Martinez is questioning the defence witnesses.

It’s like a battle for Martinez to get a “yes/no” answer to nearly every question. He thinks it’s like a boxing match and must win on every point no matter how small it may be.

To get a better understanding of how annoying prosecutor Martinez can be, just watch the first 20 minutes of him constantly objecting during the direct testimony of LaViolette last week. (below) He may legally be correct, but it must take a toll on the jury, and they may also be annoyed with Martinez, they could lean towards giving Arias, a life sentence instead of the death penalty. He never gives it a rest, constantly objecting on the smallest of the small.

Today he tried to discredit psychotherapist Alyce LaViolette as he went on a rant about her not being the lead speaker at a seminar in Los Angeles in 2010. He was suggesting that she lied on her resume and pulled every punch he could to bring her down, without success.

Prosecutor-pitbull, Juan Martinez, ouch

With all the objections from the defence, and the constant sidebars with the judge the trial has gone on for nearly three months.

It seems when ever the defence objects, the judge always allows Martinez to continue with his constant badgering of the witnesses.

It is expected to end within the next week, but the way it is going, no-one knows for sure.

Certainly not a dull moment, and with Martinez trying to discredit every defence witness, this could go on for another month before it goes to the jury.

Yes/no, yes/no, yes/no? gurrr

There has been one juror released from service and an alternate took her place, but it’s unclear why she was removed after over two months.

The jurors have not been sequestered, and why is unclear. The defence has requested they be sequestered after juror No. 5 was given the boot.

The defence request for a mistrial was denied by Judge Sherry K. Stephens. Trial continues Tuesday on HLN and In Session (truTV,)  however there is no court on Fridays. Why not?

UPDATE:  Since I wrote this Judge Stephens announced yesterday they would now be holding court on a few Fridays within the next month or so. Maybe she has read my BLOG and thought it may be a good idea, and save the State some money.

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Daniel … Toronto, Canada,    丹尼尔     دانيال … تورنتو، كندا،
My take on everything
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New Jersey Devils NHL, give me a break, they now have sign language for the singing of National Anthems

I’m all for inclusion, and we have seen it for many years, sign language (ASL) of political speeches, but tonight was a first for me.

‘Signing (ASL)’ the anthems at New Jersey Devils

New Jersey Devils have a women performing sign language for the ‘singing’ of the National Anthems.

Is that really necessary, since I thought most people know the words of their National Anthems.

It’s possible the New Jersey Devils received a lot of calls, I mean texts, from the hearing impaired community.

UPDATE: If you missed Don Cherry on Coaches Corner last week, they started off this weeks segment with the kiss on the cheek of points leader of the Leafs, Nasem Kadri in Ottawa. (YouTube below)

Don Cherry of HNIC fameCherry was on his rant again about the touch icing not being addressed in the NHL. This is where one team sends the puck the length of the ice and icing is not called until the receiving team touches the puck.

This causes both players to race to touch the puck first and in many cases can be career ending resulting from these chases into the end boards.

Cherry has always maintained this problem could be resolved if they just blow the whistle when the puck crosses the end goal line, but the NHL thinks the way it is, creates ‘excitement’ in the game, yeah right real excitement.

NHL thinks this is sooo exciting, not fans, except for serious injuries to players

Oh just a footnote, the Leafs beat the Devils, in New Jersey Satiurday night, 2-1.

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Daniel … Toronto, Canada,    丹尼尔     دانيال … تورنتو، كندا،
My take on everything
@dandmb50

Dutch – French – Spanish – Hindi – Chinese

Translate full Blog into any language. Click your flag above, if it’s not there click any flag. It will take you to Google Translate.There will be a drop down menu for languages, find yours and click to the right.

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TTC subway closed – Way too many buses replacing subway, wasting our money

TTC University subway line was closed Sunday for upgrades, buses replaced subway, but was it over staffed when TTC say they have no money?

The closure of the University line was widely announced through the media for weeks but the management at TTC felt it was necessary to have way too many buses and staff to handle the few passengers on the route. Several of the drivers and staff associated with the closure were on overtime, and there were many workers all along the shuttle bus line, directing the few passengers.

At a time when the TTC maintain they are constantly needing money to run the system.

Are they managing the system correctly and efficiently, and using our money the right way? I don’t think so. From what I saw Sunday, there were an awful lot of empty buses running up/down University Avenue and they had paid duty cops along the route, giving buses the right of way, which is an additional cost to the TTC.

It was announced by the TTC they are upgrading the signals along the University line since the signalling system is over 50 years old. They say the upgrade will allow trains to run closer together and thus improve service.

To get a look at the TTC track cleaning train, check it out HERE.

The TTC is an efficient service and one we can be proud of, but when they mismanage the system as they have done on the University line shuttle buses is that making it efficient and worthy?

Binders full of women – Fair pay for women, Mitt Romeys view, just not right

Hempstead,  New York – Things got hot and heavy last night in the second Presidential Debate at Hofstra University and Mitt Romney’s comment went viral on the internets.

But it seems only Romney’s comments got the attention but the ‘no answers’ from President Obama were overlooked. He never answered the question about why it took weeks before he said anything truthful about the terrorist attack in Benghazi, Libya. Although Romney concentrated on Obama’s speech in the Rose Garden and not ask about why UN Representative Dr. Susan Rice made the rounds saying (best assessment) the attack was associated with a YouTube video.

ROMNEY: We took a concerted effort to go out and find women who had backgrounds that could be qualified to become members of our cabinet. I went to a number of women’s groups and said, “Can you help us find folks?” and they brought us whole binders full of women.

I was proud of the fact that, after I staffed my cabinet and my senior staff, that the University of New York in Albany did a survey of all 50 states, and concluded that mine had more women in senior leadership positions than any other state in America.

Romney blew it last night, but President Obama didn’t do much better trying to dodge the real questions.

It was later suggested by people who were in Massachusetts at the time Romney said he wanted the binders, that the women’s groups approached Romney about getting women in positions of authority.

Very interesting fact, Fox News-TV did not mention anything about the “binders full of women” why not? But they did spin it well on their politics page.

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Daniel … Toronto, Canada,    丹尼尔دانيال … تورنتو، كندا،
My take on everything
@dandmb50

Dutch – French – Spanish – Hindi – Chinese

Translate full Blog into any language. Click your flag above, if it’s not there click any flag. It will take you to Google Translate.There will be a drop down menu for languages, find yours and click to the right.

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