Should Some Smart Munitions be Classified as Unmanned Aerial Vehicles UAVs?

DWard

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More drones ….cool….we can’t manage the ones we have now.

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There was one covering the St. Patrick’s Day Parade – I know – I marched in it.  It was about 30′ off the ground, hovering right over the center line on Delaware Avenue, near North. Presumeably filming.

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Now, I would be the last person to complain about filming a parade, whether the marchers in it, or the on-lookers watching.  Maybe a better view for people at home who could not make it.  However what would happen if that drone crashed and took out someone’s eye, or caused other serious injury?  Certainly possible given all the amateurs out there.  Do you think the malefactor would step forward and ask to be arrested for assault by drone, or give his name, address and insurance carrier so he could be sued for the injuries?  I think not. We’d have no idea who owned it. Or operated it. Or whether it was insured.

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Suppose it was a television station drone.  Would all the area televisions be entitled to have one?  What about amateurs?  Should there be a limit as to how many?  Costs may have limited media helicopters, but not so drones.  They are cheap enough for everyone and anyone to have them.  Will there be any limits? Financial responsibility?  Suppose the drones are armed – will the Second Amendment be extended to cover the right of citizens in a drone militia to bear arms, errh..drones?

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Dan Ward

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Kraft, Heinz to Merge, Forming Food Giant

Heintz Kraft

H.J. Heinz Co. is buying Kraft Foods, creating one of the largest food and beverage companies in the world with annual revenue of about US$28 billion.

The Kraft Heinz Co. will own brands such as Kraft, Heinz, Oscar Mayer, Ore-Ida and other brands. Eight of those brands have annual sales of US$1 billion or more and five others log sales between US$500 million and US$1 billion every year.

The deal to bring together the two companies, each more than a century old, was engineered by Warren Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway and Brazilian investment firm 3G Capital. The two will invest another US$10 billion in the new company.

The deal still needs a nod from federal regulators as well as shareholders of Kraft Foods Group Inc., but the boards of both companies unanimously approved it. The planned closing is set for the second half of the year.

Annual cost savings estimated to be $1.5 billion are expected to be booked by the end of 2017.
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Mychajliw Won’t Run For County Executive

Stefan

County comptroller Stefan Mychajliw says he will not run for county executive.

County Comptroller Stefan I. Mychajliw Jr. said Wednesday he will not run for county executive this year and will instead offer “1,000 percent” support to fellow Republican Christopher L. Jacobs for the post.

Mychajliw, who was considered with Jacobs one of two top contenders to challenge Democratic incumbent Mark C. Poloncarz this year, said family considerations – including his recent engagement – loomed foremost in his decision.

But he also said it is becoming increasingly clear that Jacobs – the county clerk – remains the choice of a wide spectrum of party leaders, and that he was urged to reach his own decision “sooner rather than later.”
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Lies, Damned Lies and State Run Media (BN) Parrots Corruption Enabling Claims

By: Mike Madigan

Anyone with a quarter of a brain knows a bold faced lie when they hear it. Credible reporting must not involve parroting such lies without placing them in context of the facts and truth. Sadly such credibility was lost long ago by the Corrupted Buffalo News.

On January 28th the Buffalo News led the article regarding Sheldon Silver’s suspension from his law firm with a quote from the alleged corrupted law firm that stated:

“Weitz & Luxenberg president Perry Weitz said the firm was “shocked” to learn about the accusations against Silver.

“We have asked Mr. Silver to take a leave of absence until these allegations are resolved,”

Silver’s scheme allegedly greatly enriched the law firm using NY State taxpayer money – an outrage that if proven must result in serious consequence against that firm.
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Germanwings Flight Crashes in French Alps; 150 Feared Dead

An helicopter takes off at Seyne les Alpes, French Alps, March 24, 2015. A Germanwings passenger jet carrying at least 150 people crashed in a remote section of the French Alps, sounding like an avalanche as it scattered pulverized debris across the mountain. 
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The news of Tuesday’s crash of a Germanwings plane destined for Düsseldorf reverberated throughout the airport — and spread quickly among arriving passengers.

“I just landed and thought about the fact that this could have happened to me as well,” Güzel Kocaman, from Solingen, Germany, told Yahoo News. “I had thought about going to Spain for vacation.

Gaby Kothe said she learned about the crash after upon her arrival. “My daughter tried calling me several times while I was on the plane,” Kothe said. “She had heard that some plane to Düsseldorf had crashed.

“There is nothing you can do about it,” Christel Ahmed, a former airline employee who just traveled from Antalya to Düsseldorf, said. “These things just happen sometimes.

Meanwhile, officials at Düsseldorf Airport quickly assembled a crisis squad. Chaplains with blue vests indicating they are part of a “care team” fanned out in search of relatives of passengers that were on Germanwing the plane, ushering them to private rooms. 

Florian Gränzdörffer, spokesman of Germanwings“ holding company Lufthansa, said the fire department, airport staff and Germanwings employees were working together.

“The staff is specifically qualified for this kind of work,” Gränzdörffer said. “However, everyone is very concerned. There were a lot of people on board of that airplane who had confided in us.

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Citizens Of Amherst Wake Up!

AmherstTownHall1

The people of Amherst are sheep whose lives and taxes are controlled by three boards in our local government: the Town Board, the Planning Board and the Zoning Board of Appeals.

As you walk around town you will see the people who sit on these Boards.  They’ll engage you in conversation as they stab you in the back for personal gain.

They must be stopped.  How?  Ignore their decisions, stand your ground, protect your property before they take it from you through some legal loophole, let the town take you to court.  When enough people get hustled by the Planning Board, the word spreads.  Amherst is well on its way of becoming known as the Developers Haven where they can come and get what they want without any problems.

All citizens must stop and look at their privacy which is being invaded by police machines, drones, cameras, etc.

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Mountie in ‘Most Canadian Photo Ever’ Humbled by Reaction to Image

Oh, we do love our Canadian neighbors, eh?

When Royal Canadian Mounted Police Cpl. Shaun Begg got the opportunity to play hockey on a rink high up in the Purcell Mountains in British Columbia, he jumped at the chance.

And because Begg, 40, is proud of being a member of the RCMP, he got permission to take his iconic uniform with him. Begg told ABC News he’d hoped to get a photo for his screen saver or for the wall of his office at the RCMP’s detachment in Kaslo, a small, picturesque village in B.C.

What he got was a quintessentially Canadian image that went viral and is now being dubbed the “most Canadian photo ever.”
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Malls on ‘Higher State of Alert’ in Wake of Terrorist Threats

Cheektowaga Police Officers Emil F. DeVincentis, left, and Timothy A. Turnbull patrol inside the Walden Galleria mall in the town Friday. The town Police Department has briefed all of its officers on the terrorist video that urges extremists to target U.S. malls.
Cheektowaga Police Officers Emil F. DeVincentis, left, and Timothy A. Turnbull patrol inside the Walden Galleria mall in the town Friday. The town Police Department has briefed all of its officers on the terrorist video that urges extremists to target U.S. malls

Officials say security measures have been increased after video posted by al-Shabaab urged attacks on ‘disbelievers’

The photographs taken during the 2013 terrorist attack on Nairobi’s Westgate mall are harrowing. Those images were fresh in shoppers’ minds last month when al-Shabaab, the terror group that claimed responsibility for that deadly act, called on sympathizers here to launch similar attacks on malls in America.

In a video released by the group, a masked man with a British accent urged militant Muslim extremists around the world to “target the disbelievers wherever they are,” reminding them that “all it takes is a man with firm determination.”

It’s a threat malls across Western New York are taking seriously.
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What Lies Beneath


Apollo Mayor Jeff Held says many people who lived near NUMEC later died of cancer. The scrap pile behind him contains pieces of the old facility.

As a kid in the 1960s, Jeff Held thought that having a nuclear company in his backyard made life more exciting in Apollo, Pennsylvania. About 2,400 people lived alongside the Nuclear Materials and Equipment Corporation (NUMEC), the town’s main employer. Held’s neighborhood subsisted on atomic lore: Just 33 miles down the road in Pittsburgh, the Westinghouse Corporation had helped construct the world’s first nuclear submarine, and in Apollo, NUMEC consequently manufactured the requisite nuclear fuel, a source of stirring pride minted by the Cold War.

To Held, the plant, its lights flickering over the western edge of town on the banks of the Kiskiminetas River, was “kind of neat.” When one of the town’s radiation monitors went off, children would dash through neighbors’ backyards to reach the facility—it was housed inside a refurbished steel mill with dirt floors, big windows, and dozens of smokestacks—to see what had happened.

As Held grew older, the plant that inspired his boyish thrill evolved into something more puzzling, and more sinister. NUMEC closed its doors in 1983, and in the mid-1990s, the federal government swooped in and declared several city blocks contaminated. Various agencies rolled in with bulldozers, razed the plant, and carted off the radioactive pieces, barrel by barrel, for disposal. Ever since, Apollo’s residents have been grappling with fears that NUMEC poisoned their town.

Beginning in the early 1960s, investigators from the Atomic Energy Commission (AEC), the agency that regulated U.S. nuclear facilities at the time, began to question how large amounts of highly enriched, weapons-grade uranium had gone missing from NUMEC.

Investigators found that at NUMEC, hundreds of pounds of uranium-235 went missing, more than at any other plant.
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Emerald Ash Borer Discovered in Glen Park; Residents Urged to Protect Their Trees

Village of Williamsville

Green menace is now widespread in Western New York, but DEC says trees can be saved

Williamsville, N.Y. – The emerald ash borer has finally come to the Village of Williamsville.

The invasive species was spotted earlier this month in Glen Park, marking the first official sighting of the insect within village boundaries. The bug, known for boring into the trunks of ash trees and for causing their eventual destruction, is already considered to be widespread in other parts of the Town of Amherst and in surrounding towns.

“We knew the day was coming when the Emerald Ash Borer would infest our village trees,” Williamsville Deputy Mayor Christopher J. Duquin said. “The village has taken action to save the trees we can and we urge our homeowners with ash trees to do the same.”

There are just under 100 ash trees on municipal property, said Trustee Daniel O. DeLano, liaison to the village tree board. The village inoculated 78 of them two years ago on the streets and in three other village parks. A few are clustered in Glen Park, a prime recreational spot for village residents and visitors.

The shots typically last from one to three years and increase the chances that trees will survive an emerald ash borer infestation. Following the State DEC’s recommendation of removal and replacement, the village removed some ash trees over the past two years but has planted more than 1,000 trees since the October Storm of 2006.

“We were ahead of the curve when it came to preserving our tree canopy but if we had to take all of the ash trees down, it would noticeably impact the canopy,” DeLano said. “That’s why we are inoculating.  We care about our trees in this village and we are doing everything we can to save these ash trees from the emerald ash borer. A healthy tree canopy is an important part of a beautiful, walkable village and adds quite a bit to property values.”

State officials have detected the emerald ash borer throughout Erie County, including in the Town of Amherst – which is heavily infested – as well as Clarence, the Tonawandas, Lancaster, Elma, West Seneca, Cheektowaga, parts of Buffalo and Lackawanna. The bug is expected to spread to other areas this summer as the temperatures rise.

Homeowners who want to save their trees should hire a certified arborist to inoculate the trees. Prices vary but the shots average about $100. More information can be found on the website of the State DEC, www.dec.ny.gov, and at the New York Invasive Species Clearinghouse at www.nyis.info.

“Inoculation lasts between 2 and 3 years,” Duquin added.  “if you have an ash tree on your property it is time to call an arborist.”

Below: Image of Village of Williamsville tree that was infested by Emerald Ash Borer, including the larvae; courtesy of Village of Williamsville. Image of another infected tree still standing on Sheridan Drive in Amherst.

ash borer ash borer2 ash borer3

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