January 20, 2008

Privacy Laws, Discrimination

Middlesex District Attorney Gerry Leone blamed her mental illness
for what she did. (Fox 25 10 O'Clock News January 18, 2008) It is
convenient but there is no causal connection. Leone's misguided notion
of what psychiatry is, is not unique. It is pervasive among lawyers,
police and prosecutors.
Revealing medical conditions is a violation of state and US
privacy laws. Law enforcement officials are not exempt. This too is
pervasive among lawyers, prosecutors and police.
The brief treatment referred to if it involved drugs may have
caused her behavior, not an illness made up by consensus.

Roy Bercaw - Editor ENOUGH ROOM

FOX25 News:


Woman Killed Self, 2 Children on I-495
Last Edited: Friday, 18 Jan 2008, 11:51 PM EST
Created: Friday, 18 Jan 2008, 2:21 PM EST
Thirty-nine-year-old Marcelle Thibault of Bellingham, her 5-year-old
niece Kaleigh Lambert and her 4-year-old nephew, Shane Lambert, were
killed on January 11th when they were hit by oncoming traffic.

Woman, Two Children Struck and Killed on Interstate 495

A woman who had picked up her niece and nephew for a sleep-over party
instead drove them onto a busy highway, took them into her arms and
walked into the road to be killed by oncoming traffic in what
authorities said Friday was a double-murder suicide.

Marcelle Thibault and the children of her twin sister, 5-year-old
Kaleigh Lambert and 4-year-old Shane Lambert, both of Brentwood, N.H.,
were killed on Jan. 11 when they were struck by two cars.

Thibault, 39, of Bellingham, was driving her 2003 Lincoln sedan south
on the interstate that night when she turned the car sharply, crossed
the median and northbound lanes and then began driving against traffic
in the breakdown lane, authorities said.

She then stopped on the right side of the road, got out of the car and
removed her clothes and undressed the children. She picked them up and
walked onto the highway.

"There are not many other scenarios I can think of that are as tragic
as this one," District Attorney Gerry Leone said. "It is beyond
belief, it is unimaginable, it is unspeakable, and it was a horrible

Leone said the Lamberts, whom he described as loving parents, would
not have allowed their children to go with their aunt if they were not
certain they would be safe.

Leone said Thibault had received treatment for mental illness. Paul
Young, a spokesman for the Lambert family and friend from St.
Michael's Parish in Exeter, N.H., did not know the details, but said
it was a "brief, isolated incident in her life" within the past year.

"She appeared to be fully recovered from that, and there was no
indication of a relapse," he said.

Leone said no drugs or alcohol were involved. He blamed her mental
illness for what she did and said it was impossible to determine any

"It is far too complicated, too complex a dynamic and illness for us
to be able to make any real determinations about what exactly the
cause was or what exactly was in her mind," he said.

Leone said Thibault had picked up her niece and nephew to go to her
house for a "pirate and princess weekend." Young said the woman, who
had two teenage children, often took her sister's kids for special

"They have a fairly close family as a whole," Young said. "They were
twin sisters, so obviously that bond."

Young said Kaleigh and Shane, the only children of Ken and Danielle
Lambert, were typical youngsters, full of energy and well behaved.

"They're a great family," Young said.

The family pleaded for prayers and privacy in a statement released
through the district attorney's office.

"This is a time of terrible tragedy for our families. We love Marci,
Kaleigh, and Shane and we miss them very much," the statement said.
"We ask everyone to join us in prayer for their souls, and to help us
get through this most difficult period of our lives. We ask that the
media respect our privacy and allow us the time to grieve and heal as
we mourn our great loss."

Disability Rights Abuses

Disability Rights Abuses

Cover headline (Britney's Mental Illness) for "Britney in Crisis" (Michelle Tauber, Michelle Tan, People, January 21, 2008, page 62-68) is misguided. The story presents no evidence of any illness. Quoting psychiatrists who never treated Spears shows how arbitrary psychiatry is. This article is not unique quoting "sources" with no training making medical diagnosis. Irresponsible nonexistent standards reporting about psychiatry is pervasive.
Saying "she has been prescribed at least one antidepressant/antianxiety drug," shows that the drugs may be the cause of her eccentric behavior not the made-up illnesses.
Mark Goulston says "manic behavior is when you don't have any sense of rules. [. . .] 'I play by my own rules.'" That applies to psychiatrists who do not know state and US laws regarding psychiatry and disclosing medical records. Publishing the medical condition of this young lady is a violation of state and US privacy laws for many individuals. Putting allegations of mental illness on the cover of People, January 21, 2008 shows exploitation of persons with disabilities. Would a responsible publication report about politicians or journalists? Why a troubled young woman?

Veterans are Mental Patients?

Veterans are Mental Patients?

Ralph Peters reveals how prominent journalists demonize American veterans saying "they can't be trusted amid uninfected Americans." (RALPH PETERS, "THE NEW 'LEPERS,'" New York Post, January 18, 2008) They join ordinary citizens who journalists accuse of mental illness.
Police, prosecutors and psychiatrists utter "hate-speech disguised as public service" when referring to the need for "treatment." Persons with disabilities accused of mental illness are also portrayed as "hopelessly damaged, victimized, infected human beings who've become outcasts from civilized society [. . .] freaks form a flasher flick."
Peters says journalists and Hollywood writers present the image of vets as "nuts. Violently nuts. They kill their neighbors. They kill their own kind. And they're just waiting for the right moment of madness to kill you." Vets are mentally ill?
Many demonized vets will become patients of the psychiatric industry to curb their "violent tendencies." Often the treatment, psychiatric drugs, will make some of these vets as violent as they are portrayed to be.

Roy Bercaw - Editor ENOUGH ROOM

New York Post

January 18, 2008 -- I'VE had a huge response to Tuesday's column about The New York Times' obscene bid to smear veterans of Iraq and Afghanistan as mad killers. Countless readers seem to be wondering: Why did the paper do it?

Well, in the Middle Ages, lepers had to carry bells on pain of death to warn the uninfected they were coming. One suspects that the Times would like our military veterans to do the same.

The purpose of Sunday's instantly notorious feature "alerting" the American people that our Iraq and Afghanistan vets are all potential murderers when they move in next door was to mark those defenders of freedom as "unclean" - as the new lepers who can't be trusted amid uninfected Americans.

In the more than six years since 9/11, the Times has never run a feature story half as long on any of the hundreds of heroes who've served our country - those who've won medals of honor, distinguished service crosses, Navy crosses, silver stars or bronze stars with a V device (for valor).

But the Times put a major investigative effort into the "sensational" story that 121 returning vets had committed capital offenses (of course, 20 percent of the cases cited involved manslaughter charges stemming from drunken driving, not first- or second-degree murder . . . ).

Well, a quick statistics check let the air out of the Times' bid to make us dread the veteran down the block - who the Times implies has a machine gun under his bathrobe when he steps out front to fetch the morning paper. In fact, the capital-crimes rate ballyhooed by the Gray Lady demonstrates that our returning troops are far less likely to commit such an offense.

Again, the Times' smear certainly wasn't an accident. The paper's staff is highly paid and highly experienced. Its editors know that a serious news story has to put numbers into context. But their sole attempt at context was to note that offenses by former soldiers have ticked up since we went to war.

The Times is trying to make you fear our veterans (Good Lord, if your daughter marries one, she's bound to be beaten to death!). And to convince you that our military would be a dreadful place for your sons and daughters, a death-machine that would turn them into incurable psychopaths.

To a darkly humorous degree, all this reflects the Freudian terrors leftists feel when confronted with men who don't have concave chests. But it goes far beyond that.

Pretending to pity tormented veterans (vets don't want our pity - they want our respect), the Times' feature was an artful example of hate-speech disguised as a public service.

The image we all were supposed to take away from that story was of hopelessly damaged, victimized, infected human beings who've become outcasts from civilized society. The Times cast our vets as freaks from a slasher flick.

The hard left's hatred of our military has deteriorated from a political stance into a pathology: The only good soldier is a dead soldier who can be wielded as a statistic (out of context again). Or a deserter who complains bitterly that he didn't join the Army to fight . . .

At the risk of turning to anecdotal evidence - a technique much-abused by the left - I have to declare that I personally know hundreds of veterans. (Can anyone at the Times head office make that claim?) Not a single one of them has committed a crime worse than exceeding the speed limit on the Interstate.

Not one vet I know is in prison for a crime he or she committed after taking off the uniform. And in nearly 22 years of active service, I encountered only two soldiers who committed violent crimes (no murders).

Contrary to the Times, veterans are consistently among the most upstanding members of their communities. They volunteer. They vote. They take pride in being good neighbors. And those I know have raised their children more successfully than the average liberal household.

But what's the image that the left, whether the Times or the silly people in Hollywood, presents to us? Vets are nuts. Violently nuts. They kill their neighbors. They kill their own kind. And they're just waiting for the right moment of madness to kill you.

A longstanding goal of the left, recently invigorated, has been to drive a wedge between our military and our society. The real vet is the neighbor who fixes your kid's bike (or your computer). But the left's archetypal vet is the Marine colonel in "American Beauty" who, frustrated in his suppressed gay passions, murders poor Kevin Spacey.

Yes, war is a terrible crucible. Some vets, past and present, do need help. And they deserve the best help our country can give them. But the left-wing fantasy of hordes of psychotics driven mad by drill sergeants and Army chow is just that: a fantasy.

Of course, if the Times responds at all to the storm of protests their insult to our veterans aroused, the editors will try to fudge the numbers in their favor. You just can't argue with ideologues. They lie and they cheat. And they justify it as being for the greater good of ignorant fools like us.

So let me suggest the best-possible revenge on the veteran-trashing jerks at The New York Times: Instead of fleeing in terror the next time you see a veteran you know, just thank him or her for their service.

And let's save the leper's bells for dishonest journalists.

Ralph Peters is a retired Army officer who has yet to kill any of his neighbors (although they'd better keep their grass cut).

January 18, 2008

Rotenberg Shock Tapes Destroyed

Rotenberg Shock Tapes Destroyed

The spokesman for the Rotenberg School said "There is no
obligation to hold on to these tapes for any length of time."
(Patricia Wen, "Report says shock tapes destroyed against order,"
Boston Globe, January 18, 2008) Oh?
Would that be a psychological obligation, a public relations
obligation or a legal obligation? Few psychiatrists or psychologists
(or PR flacks) know the laws that protect vulnerable persons. They
violate the laws with no curbs from law enforcement due to
institutionalized discrimination among police agencies. Psychologists
operate in a world without the US Constitution and without state laws.
They believe they are superior beings with superior knowledge of right
and wrong conduct, thoughts and speech. They determine what is proper
behavior. They ignore laws because they believe they are above the
Here is an opportunity for the state to teach these arrogant
professionals who abuse vulnerable students because of their unchecked
power. It is long over due for the state authorities to exercise their
lawful authority to curb these institutionalized abuses. Obstruction
of justice is a crime.

Roy Bercaw - Editor ENOUGH ROOM

Report says shock tapes destroyed against order
By Patricia Wen
Boston Globe Staff
January 18, 2008

Top officials at the Judge Rotenberg Educational Center destroyed
videotapes at the focus of an investigation into alleged abuse at one
of its group homes after being ordered by state investigators to
preserve the tapes, according to a report obtained by the Globe.

The tapes, a compilation of footage from video cameras inside the
group home in Stoughton, recorded an August 2007 incident in which
staff wrongfully administered dozens of shocks to two emotionally
disturbed teenagers, after a caller posing as a supervisor professed
to be delivering orders from the school's director and a chief aide.
One student received 77 shocks, the other 29.

An investigator with the Disabled Persons Protection Commission, which
examines abuse allegations and can refer cases for criminal
prosecution, viewed the tapes as part of her inquiry and asked
Rotenberg officials if she could have a copy of them, according to the
commission's report on the incident. School officials declined, saying
that the school "did not want any possibility of the images getting
into the media," according to the report, which was obtained by the

The investigator then directed the school to preserve a copy of the
tapes for use by State Police conducting a criminal investigation. She
was later told by a trooper, who apparently attempted to view them
that "the images were not preserved by JRC."

Matthew Israel, founder and director of the school, did not return a
phone call yesterday to discuss the tapes, but a school spokesman,
Ernest Corrigan, said that school officials did not want to keep the
tapes out of fear they would end up in the hands of the media or on
the Internet, further upsetting the lives of the two victims in the
Aug. 26 incident. He said investigators from the commission held an
"exit interview" on Sept. 30 with school staff, leading them to
believe there was no more need to keep the tapes.

In an interview with the Globe earlier this week, Israel said the
tapes had been reviewed by several investigators soon after the August
incident and were not preserved because the investigation "seemed to
be finished."

He said the school normally keeps its recordings for about 30 days and
then reuses the tapes.

Israel gave a similar explanation at the State House on Wednesday when
asked about the tapes at a public hearing on a bill to restrict shock
treatments at the school.

However, he did not mention being asked by state investigators to
preserve the tapes.

The destruction of the tapes has led some critics of the school, the
only one in the nation that uses shock treatments for special
education students, to call for an investigation into whether Israel
or his staff engaged in obstruction of justice.

"I believe the tape was intentionally destroyed because it was
incriminating," said Senator Brian A. Joyce, a Democrat from Milton,
who has long sought to ban shock therapy at the school. "I intend to
ask the attorney general to investigate."

Lawyers with experience in state and federal prosecutions say that
obstruction-of-justice investigations can be complex, but that they
center largely on why a piece of evidence was destroyed.

"Any investigation would want to look into intent very closely," said
Michael Ricciuti, a former prosecutor now in private practice in

The disclosure about the tapes occurs as the Disabled Persons
Protection Commission is preparing for a public release of its
findings Tuesday.

Its report concludes that one of the teenage students was severely
physically and emotionally abused by the incident. The commission has
referred the case to the Norfolk district attorney's office.

The Rotenberg school has more than 200 students, most of whom are
mentally retarded, autistic, or emotionally disturbed. It has about
900 staff members.

Started by Israel in 1971, the residential school has attracted
nationwide controversy for its unorthodox behavioral-modification
techniques, which include the administration of two-second skin shocks
as a way to deter violent or disruptive behavior.

Critics say that such shocks are often given for relatively minor
infractions, such as swearing or leaving a seat without permission.

After failing twice in the past two decades to close the school,
opponents have embraced a bill pending in the Legislature that would
allow shocks only to stop students from hurting themselves or others.

Leo Sarkissian - executive director of The Arc of Massachusetts, a
grass-roots organization representing people with intellectual
disabilities - said he was outraged to learn that investigators no
longer have the tapes, saying the destruction of the recordings shows
"a lack of integrity" by Israel and his staff.

But Corrigan, spokesman for the school, said such assertions are
unfair, adding that school officials voluntarily set up video cameras
to monitor the staff and student performance.

"There is no obligation to hold on to these tapes for any length of
time," he said.

Patricia Wen can be reached at wen@globe.com.

January 16, 2008

Able Persons of No Color

Able Persons of No Color

Persons with disabilities are about 20 percent of the population.
No person with a disability is on the City Council. No person with a
disability is on the School Committee. For Sarah Jones that is zero
percent. (Sarah Jones, "Councilors should elect Simmons," Letter,
Cambridge Chronicle, Jan 08, 2008) The Minister of Information for the
Conformist Party of Cambridge ridicules persons with disabilities who
run for office. In December 2007 Councilor Simmons agreed with two
persons of no color to exclude persons with disabilities from
participating in city programs and affairs.
The Human Rights Commission excludes persons with disabilities
from city programs. Persons with disabilities are only good for being
clients of human services corporations. Rev. Martin Luther King, Jr.
's dream was for persons of color to be judged by the character not by
their skin color. In Cambridge people are judged by their skin color
and by their sexual preference and by their gender. Let's celebrate
stomping on MLK, Jr.'s dream. Simmons for Mayor. Keep persons with
disabilities in their place. It is not yet the time for them to
participate in civic affairs. Let Robert Winters speak for them. They
are unable to speak for themselves. Vote Simmons for Mayor!

Roy Bercaw - Editor ENOUGH ROOM

Councilors should elect Simmons
Sarah Jones
Cambridge Chronicle
Tue Jan 08, 2008, 03:12 PM EST

Cambridge - I am sending you this letter in support of electing
Councilor Denise Simmons as the mayor of Cambridge. There are many
reasons for my support, but the crux is the vital importance to have a
diverse School Committee. There are two considerations on the subject
of diversity that are greatly affecting my point of view, both racial
and gender diversity.

If Councilor Simmons is not elected mayor by the City Council, the
School Committee will no longer have an African-American
representative and will be composed of only Caucasian, non-Hispanic

According to the 2000 and 2006 population data, above, the city of
Cambridge's racial populations are rich with diversity, with more than
35 percent representing non-Caucasian races. If Councilor Simmons is
appointed mayor of Cambridge, the School Committee would be 14 percent
non-Caucasian and 86 percent Caucasian/non-Hispanic. If she is not
elected by the City Council, the School Committee will only represent
64 percent of the city's racial population. If the School Committee
does not have at least one representative of its non-Caucasian
population, the situation will be extremely worrisome to many
Cambridge citizens, including about 36,000 unrepresented Cantabrigians
of color, including myself.

Another important consideration for the mayoral candidate, also due to
serving as chairman to the School Committee, is gender. According to
the same population data used above, the Cambridge population (101,355
in 2000, 101,365 estimated in 2006) is 49 percent male and 51 percent
female. The School Committee-elect for 2008 is currently composed of
two women and four men. If a man is appointed as mayor of Cambridge,
the gender ratio in the School Committee will be 28.6 percent female
and 71.4 percent male. Conversely, with a female as mayor, the School
Committee's gender ratio would be 42.9 percent female and 57.1 percent
male, which is obviously much more in line with the city and school
system being served.

Other reasons for my support of Councilor Simmons are the facts that
she currently has children in the Cambridge Public Schools and she has
previous experience as an elected member of the Cambridge School
Committee. Neither Mayor Reeves nor Councilman Toomey is a parent, so
neither of these men has the personal nor familial interest in
Cambridge schools as does Councilor Simmons. And Mayor Reeves has
never been an elected member of the School Committee beyond his
city-appointed role as chairman. Neither Councilor Decker nor
Councilor Murphy has been elected to the School Committee. Councilor
Davis' children are all in their twenties, no longer students of
Cambridge Public Schools. Councilors Seidel and Kelley support
Councilor Simmons, as evidenced today during the City Council
inauguration and the mayoral voting at City Hall.

January 12, 2008

Pervasive corruption

Pervasive corruption

It is not just the BPD which has bad officers. (O'Ryan Johnson, "Cops
nab officer in armed holdup," Boston Herald, January 12, 2008) Since
James Bulger allegedly became a fugitive, there's been no scrutiny or
cleansing of any of the many police agencies in Massachusetts. Bulger,
Kevin Weeks and others boasted of how they paid off many officers and
A one party government breeds corruption. US Judge Mark Wolf
criticized the US Attorney who holds two jobs for not prosecuting
In Cambridge three city employees were arrested selling cocaine
from City Trucks. After five meetings the City Council remains silent
about this criminal activity.
On the Cambridge weekly newspaper blog only one comment from
citizens regarding this activity. No city, state or US elected
officials speak about corruption.
The Universities, corporations and lawyers exploit the relaxed
rectitude of officials. The corruption is so thorough that the few
citizens who watch the government fear speaking out due to the severe
retaliatory abuse from police and politicians.
Politicians cite silence as approval of their good work. Talk
about living in a fantasy world. Massachusetts politicians all live
The Harvard-Corporate-Lawyer Governor treats laws as
inconveniences. He openly ignores laws and encourages other officials
to join him. Massachusetts is a lawless state and the citizens approve
of it.

Roy Bercaw - Editor ENOUGH ROOM

Cops nab officer in armed holdup
Robbery rocks BPD
By O'Ryan Johnson
Boston Herald
Saturday, January 12, 2008

January 11, 2008

Dr. Phil Not Unique

Dr. Phil Not Unique

Dr. Phil is not unique abusing the privacy rights of persons accused of
mental illness. (DAVID K. LI, "BETRAYAL," New York Post, January 10, 2008, page
9) In some states and under US law it is unlawful to reveal the medical records
of a person without consent.
Dr. Phil is among the many unlicensed persons who make diagnosis that
journalists publish in their rush to demonize vulnerable people. Police,
prosecutors, relatives, neighbors and lovers regularly become psychiatric
experts for journalists who want an explanation for a person's behavior.
Journalists share the misguided notion that mental illness causes
violent behavior. They refuse to scrutinize the abuses of the psychiatric
industry, the academic research industry and the psychiatric drug cartels.
More and more research shows that the psychiatric drugs are the cause of
violence and death. Yet the economic power of the drug companies overrules the
duty of journalists to reveal this evil to the public.

Roy Bercaw, Editor ENOUGH ROOM

New York Post

January 10, 2008 -- Britney Spears' fuming family turned to the wrong person
when they tapped blabbermouth Dr. Phil to counsel their daughter - he's not even
a licensed psychologist.

TV host Phil McGraw allowed his license to lapse in Texas and never had one in
California, where he tapes his syndicated show, officials in Austin and
Sacramento said yesterday.

When "Dr. Phil" first aired in 2002, California regulators - concerned about
McGraw's folksy, off-the-cuff commentary - convened a panel to rule if he was
acting as a clinical psychologist and in need of a license.

"It was determined what he was doing was more entertainment than psychology,"
said Russ Heimerich, a spokesman for the California Board of Psychology,
explaining why state officials passed on regulating "Dr. Phil."

So even though Dr. Phil had been classified as a showman and not a shrink,
Spears' parents still sent McGraw into Britney's Los Angeles hospital room in
hopes he could treat their daughter.

Instead, McGraw tried to turn Spears' problems into a ratings blockbuster, the
livid parents' spokeswoman said yesterday.

"Well, what's wrong with Dr. Phil's statement is that he made a statement [to
the press]," said Lou Taylor, business manager for parents Jamie and Lynne

"The family basically extended an invitation of trust for him to come in as a
resource to support them, not to go out and make public statements," she told
the "Today" show.

Taylor said McGraw violated family trust, and made it harder for Britney to seek

"Any statement publicly that he made, because he was brought in under the cloak
of trust, are just inappropriate . . . we feel like, to set the record straight,
we need to say that," she said.

"I mean, here you have Britney, that needs to have some security somewhere, that
every single thing she does and every single person she has a relationship with
doesn't become an opportunity to be exploited. I mean, when do you ever rest in
that if you're constantly in fear of being exploited?"

McGraw, through his LA spokesman, yesterday declined to defend himself against
the Spears' accusations.

After briefly chatting with Spears this past weekend, McGraw said she needs

"My meeting with Britney and some family members this morning in her room at
Cedars leaves me convinced more than ever that she is in dire need of both
medical and psychological intervention," Dr. Phil said in a statement,
publicizing his meeting with Spears.

"She was released moments before my arrival and was packing when I entered the
room," the doctor adds. "We visited for about an hour before I walked with her
to her car. I am very concerned for her."

Earlier this week, McGraw said he pulled the plug on a "Dr. Phil" show about
Britney out of concern for her family.

"Because the Spears situation is too intense at this time, and out of
consideration to the family, I have made the decision not to move forward with
the taping at this particular time," McGraw said.

Jamie and Lynne Spears also dispute reports they agreed to go on "Dr. Phil" this
week. Taylor said McGraw asked them to appear, but they didn't accept his

"I felt that, too, it was inappropriate for him to even be self-serving in
bringing something like that up," Taylor said. "Because that would not be a
vector to get Britney help."


January 9, 2008

Bias OK For Thee But Not For Me?

Bias For Thee But Not For Me?

After many years white and Asian people are finally addressing
unlawful discrimination in the public schools. (CHUCK BENNETT,"IN 'WRONG'
New York Post, November 19, 2007) But why are there still no questions why
persons with disabilities are excluded from such programs? Discrimination based
upon disability is as illegal as racial discrimination. But journalists, lawyers
and public schools continue this activity. Let me guess, it never entered their

Roy Bercaw, Editor ENOUGH ROOM

New York Post

November 19, 2007 -- Three Chinese parents in Brooklyn are expected to file a
federal lawsuit today challenging a popular city-run tutoring program on the
grounds it discriminates against Asians, The Post has learned.

The Specialized High School Institute preps gifted but "underrepresented"
minorities to ace the competitive exam to get into top city high schools like
Stuyvesant or Brooklyn Tech.

But the parents say it is unfair - and illegal - for the Department of Education
to limit eligibility to blacks and Latinos.

"The program only selects certain kinds of minorities and unfortunately my
daughter didn't fall into that category," said Peggy Foo-Ching, 47, a mom from
Bensonhurst who said her 12-year-old daughter's application last year was

The Specialized High School Institute was created to expand the population of
black and Latino students at the elite high schools, but the Department of
Education has always insisted anyone who qualifies for a free lunch could apply.

Foo-Ching's eldest daughter qualified for the institute in 2003 and is now a
student at Brooklyn Tech, but the mother believes guidelines were changed
barring her younger daughter from participating last March.

A Department of Education internal memo obtained by lawyers trying the case
indicated that eligibility criteria excludes whites and Asians.

"What this memo reveals is blatant and categorical discrimination by race. If
you are white or Asian, you're not supposed to get an application," said
Christopher Hajec, an attorney with the Center for Individual Rights, a
conservative advocacy group.

"It's not the business of the government of New York City to be counting up the
Asians or whites in, say, Stuyvesant High School and concluding there are too
many of them."

Andrew Jacob, a Department of Education spokesman, said the racial criteria has
been under review since summer, when a US Supreme Court ruling said ethnicity
could not be a factor in deciding which public schools students attend.

He could not comment on the suit, but said no policy will be changed before
March, when the next group of sixth-graders will be invited to apply to the

The father who initiated the suit, Stanley Ng, said he understood how
controversial his challenge may be viewed.

"It's not something that I take lightly," he said. "There are many Asian and
white kids in this district who can't pay for tutoring. What is their recourse?"


Judge Flip Wilson

Judge Flip Wilson

The Commission on Judicial Conduct "found that the misconduct [of Judge
Ernest Murphy] wasn’t willful." (Jessica Van Sack, "Report urges public
reprimand for judge," Boston Herald, November 22, 2007) Does that mean that the
devil made him do it?

Roy Bercaw, Editor ENOUGH ROOM

Report urges public reprimand for judge
By Jessica Van Sack
Boston Herald
Thursday, November 22, 2007 - Updated 3d 3h ago

A hearing officer yesterday released a report recommending that Superior Court
Judge Ernest B. Murphy be publicly reprimanded for “conduct prejudicial to the
administration of justice and unbecoming of a judicial officer” in sending two
bizarre and “threatening” letters to the publisher of the Boston Herald.

Retired Judge Peter W. Kilborn - tapped to preside over Murphy’s hearing on
charges of willful misconduct filed by the Commission on Judicial Conduct -
found that the misconduct wasn’t willful but that Murphy was “imprudent” in
sending the letters to the publisher of a major metropolitan newspaper. Kilborn
also found that dispatching the letters constituted an attempt to use the
“prestige” of his bench to advance his own interests.

The charges stem from handwritten missives Murphy sent on court stationery after
winning a 2005 libel verdict against the Boston Herald following a series of
critical stories.

In one letter, Murphy demands that Herald Publisher Patrick J. Purcell come to a
lunch meeting with a check for $3.26 million, roughly $500,000 greater than the
sum of his judgment plus interest at the time.

Purcell released a statement yesterday saying, “We are pleased with the hearing
officer’s report and will await the further proceedings before the Commission on
Judicial Conduct and ultimately the Supreme Judicial Court.”

Kilborn’s 27-page finding is hardly the final say. The Commission on Judicial
Conduct is slated to consider Kilborn’s recommendation before it submits its
final report to the Supreme Judicial Court, which will then render the decision
as to what penalties, if any, Murphy will face. The process is expected to take
several months.

In Murphy’s first letter to Purcell, dated Feb. 20, 2005, the judge wrote, “You
will bring to that meeting a cashier’s check, payable to me, in the sum of
$3,260,000. No check, no meeting.”

In a second letter, dated March 18, 2005, Murphy told Purcell he had “ZERO
chance” of reversing the jury’s verdict on appeal.

“‘Do what I say or you’ll be sorry’ is the message,” Kilborn writes of Murphy’s
letters. “The recipient of such communications can reasonably apprehend that a
judge can find ways to make good on threats.”

In his recommendation, Kilborn also writes:“A reasonable person, on reading the
letters, reacts by asking, ‘what could the judge have been thinking when he sent

Bipartisan Politics

Bipartisan politics is in the eyes of the beholder. (Cara Bayles, "Super
Tuesday brings politiking closer to home," Weekly Dig, December 5, 2007, page 7)
GOP Director says "Both parties are interested in getting more attention."
A spokesman for the Democrats agreed saying, "this one shot through the
Legislature with bipartisan support. [. . .] If the governor and the speaker and
the senate president and the secretary are all in agreement about this, it must
be a good idea," he said. All of those elected officials are Democrats.
If the Republicans opposed the idea what are the chances of them stopping

Roy Bercaw, Editor ENOUGH ROOM

Super Tuesday brings politicking closer to home
By Cara Bayles
Weekly Dig
December 5, 2007

Last week, Gov. Deval Patrick signed a bill to bump the Massachusetts primary up
a month, from March to February. Unlike so many bills that have sunk into a mire
of negotiation, this one shot through the Legislature with bipartisan support.

Alex Goldstein, spokesman for the Massachusetts Democratic Party, said the
united support wasn't terribly surprising. "If the governor and the speaker and
the senate president and the secretary are all in agreement about this, it must
be a good idea," he said. "Both parties would like their state's primary to be
as relevant as possible."

Robert Willington, Executive Director of the Massachusetts GOP, agreed and
anticipated a step-up in campaigning. "I think that was the point," he said.
"Both parties are interested in getting more attention just like Iowa and New

And there's been a flutter of campaigning in Massachusetts already. Barack Obama
came here Sunday to bask in Gov. Patrick's endorsement and host "Boston's
Countdown to Change." And First Sir hopeful Bill Clinton was in town Monday,
hosting an expensive fundraiser on his wife's behalf.

Secretary of State William Galvin drew names Tuesday to determine the order
candidates would appear on the state's ballot (picking pieces of paper from a
barrel rather than listing names alphabetically is true democracy). Galvin was
an outspoken supporter of pushing up the primary date.
Both Parties?

"The way the calendar was becoming front-loaded, it was a very real possibility
that our primary wouldn't matter much," said Galvin spokesman Brian McNiff.
"Super Tuesday, Super Duper Tuesday, call it what you will."

So-called "Super Tuesday," when the largest number of states simultaneously hold
primaries, has been in early March since 1988. But this year, states scrambled
to get ahead of the pack, which has simply resulted in pushing that Tuesday up a
month. In all, 23 states will hold their primary on February 5th.

McNiff doubts this will have an effect on voter turnout in Massachusetts. "But I
think voter turnout would have been negatively impacted if we hadn't pushed the
date up," he said. "People would have seen projections saying the primary was
already decided and not bothered to go out and vote."

The state party committees will have an earlier deadline to select delegates for
the national convention. And the deadline to register to vote and to switch
parties, has changed with the primary date. It is now Wednesday, January 15th.

January 7, 2008

Drugs Caused Britney Spears Meltdown?

Drugs Caused Britney Spears Meltdown?

"That source told the paper Spears 'had been drinking, which wasn't a good
idea, since she was on [prescription] medications . . . '" (JAMES FANELLI in
'CUSTODY,'" New York Post, January 6, 2008, Page 3) The article does not say if
they are psychiatric drugs.
When will journalists and law enforcement officials recognize the criminal
negligence of medical professionals who give prescription drugs to vulnerable
persons with known weaknesses? The drug companies have taken control of rational
medicine and put profits above common sense.

Roy Bercaw, Editor ENOUGH ROOM

New York Post
By JAMES FANELLI in Kentwood, La. and JENNIFER FERMINO in New York
Page 3

January 6, 2008 -- Mad mama Britney Spears was secretly smuggled out of a
hospital yesterday past hundreds of clueless paparazzi, only a day after cops
strapped her to a gurney and forced her to get mental help following a
harrowing, three-hour custody standoff.

READ: Live Britney Coverage On Pagesix.com

Spears was quietly carried out of LA's Cedars-Sinai Medical Center via an
underground tunnel, according to the Web site of the TV show "Entertainment

But right before she left the hospital, the fallen pop star received a visit
from boob-tube shrink Dr. Phil McGraw.

"My meeting with Britney and some family members this morning . . . convinced
[me] more than ever that she is in dire need of both medical and psychological
intervention," the talk show host told "Entertainment Tonight" and "The

One relative who missed the Dr. Phil meeting was her mother.

Lynne Spears was home in Louisiana seeking solace at the graves of her parents
and sister, Sandra Covington, who died a year ago from cancer.

It appears that her ex-husband, Jamie, who has publicly criticized some of Lynne
Spears' decisions in the past, is taking charge in LA.

He was spotted at the hospital following his daughter's massive meltdown.

It all began on Thursday, when Britney barricaded herself in a bedroom, and
ended when she was hauled away to the hospital psychiatric ward early Friday.

Later that day, she lost custody of her two kids to her ex-husband, Kevin


The latest revelations include:

* Britney Spears will check herself into a private loony bin to deal with her
mental problems, according to PageSix.com.

* Before she was released, the troubled "Toxic" singer was freaking out in her
hospital room, demanding to be sent home, screaming at the staff and even
pulling out her IV, according to TMZ.com.

* Lynne Spears reportedly believes her troubled spawn deserved to lose custody
of her two sons.

* The pop tart did nothing to soothe her panic-stricken, sobbing toddler while
she kept him locked in her bedroom during Thursday's three-hour standoff with

The drama began when a member of K-Fed's camp showed up at Spears' home to pick
up the kids.

VIDEO: Britney Wheeled into Hospital on Stretcher

Almost immediately, the unstable superstar went into "total meltdown," a source
who was inside Spears' home at the time told the Chicago Sun-Times.

That source told the paper Spears "had been drinking, which wasn't a good idea,
since she was on [prescription] medications . . . As soon as Kevin's guy got to
the House, she started screaming, then ran to her bedroom and locked and bolted
the door."

Most disturbing, she took her "screaming" son, Jayden James, 1, with her.

London's News of the World reported that K-Fed was fearful that his ex was going
to use a firearm on the frightened baby. Kevin had purchased Spears a 9 mm
Beretta for her birthday, which was kept in the bedroom, and a Glock, the paper

Cops were called, and the chaos inside the house escalated.

At one point, the desperate ex-wife freaked so bad that she tried to bite one of
K-Fed's bodyguards in an effort to keep him from taking Jayden James, News of
the World reported.

Finally, a restrained Spears was carried out of her Studio City, Calif., house
on a stretcher.

jennifer.fermino (at) nypost.com