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FridayJanuary 21, 2011

Latino Daily News: Bringing You the Latest Hispanic Current Events and News Stories 24/7

To reflect the dynamic interests of our audience, Latino Daily News is an online daily news source and virtual cultural center for and about Latinos. We offer the latest news headlines, as well as innovative and insightful Hispanic current events stories, photos, videos, and commentaries from a Latino perspective, 24/7.

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Latin American and Caribbean Unemployment Dropped in 2010

The economic upturn in most Latin American and Caribbean countries in 2010 fueled a .6 percentage point drop in unemployment – from 8.1% in 2009 to 7.5% - and is expected to lead to a further decrease of between 0.2 and 0.4 percentage points this year, the United Nations reported today.

Issued by the UN Economic Commission for Latin America and the Caribbean (ECLAC) and the UN International Labor Organization (ILO), the study noted that international trade and financial conditions, as well as the upturn in domestic demand resulting from macroeconomic policy, generated economic growth of around 6 per cent for the region in 2010.

The recovery has fuelled the generation of formal employment, a rise in the employment rate, a fall in joblessness and a moderate increase in real wages, it added, but the performance of different countries and sub-regions has been very uneven.

On the one hand, high economic growth in Brazil has been accompanied by the vigorous creation of formal jobs and the unemployment rate has dropped to levels not seen in a long time. Other countries in South America have benefited from strong demand for natural resources from Asian countries. Combined with higher domestic demand, this has raised their economic growth rates and had a positive impact on employment indicators.

On the other hand, the recovery is still very weak in certain countries and sub-regions, particularly in the Caribbean, with employment indicators continuing to worsen.

This year the region overall is expected to register a 4.8 per cent rise in per capita gross domestic product (GDP).

Read more by HS News Staff →

Major Immigration Sweep in Michigan Nets 70 Criminal Aliens, 525,000 Estimated to be in Country

More than 70 criminal aliens, immigration fugitives and immigration violators are facing deportation and criminal charges following a four-day enforcement operation spearheaded by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s (ICE) Enforcement and Removal Operations (ERO) Fugitive Operations Teams (FOTs) in and around Grand Rapids, Mich.

During the operation, which concluded late yesterday, ICE made a total of 77 arrests in Kent, Calhoun, Ottawa, Kalamazoo, Berrien, St. Joseph and Mason counties.

Of those taken into custody, 22 were aliens with prior criminal convictions, six had been previously deported who returned to the United States illegally after being removed, and 35 were immigration fugitives who failed to comply with a final order of deportation issued by an immigration judge.

Their criminal histories included prior arrests and convictions for a variety of violations, including manslaughter, criminal sexual conduct, weapons violations, reentry after deportation, and assault and disorderly conduct among others. Since many of the individuals have outstanding orders of deportation or have been previously deported, they are subject to immediate removal from the country.

The group included 64 males and 13 females from five different countries - Mexico (41), Guatemala (27), Honduras (7), Laos (1), China (1).

Estimates now place the number of immigration fugitives in the United States as slightly under 525,000, a decrease of more than 71,000 since October 2007.

Largely as a result of these initiatives, ICE last year removed more than 392,800 aliens from the United States, which is a record number; of that number more than 195,700 were aliens with criminal convictions.

Read more by HS News Staff →

Reuters Reports: Over One Million Immgrants Working in U.S. Despite Unemployment Rates

Reuters Reports: Over One Million Immgrants Working in U.S. Despite Unemployment Rates

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As the unemployment rate in the United States just barely drops below the double-digit mark, more than one million immigrants are still finding jobs.

According to the review done by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics and Census Bureau, the young, unskilled or semi-unskilled, immigrants are being employed to work in areas like construction, where they are willing to work at lower wages than their American-born counterparts. Other jobs taken are those that unemployed Americans reportedly snub their noses at or lack the skills to do.

Currently the national unemployment rate is 9.4 percent, but President Obama has said job creation is at the top of his to-do list.

Many believe that the report proves that strengthening immigration enforcement is necessary for the benefit of the U.S. economy, while others say the problem lies with those that employ undocumented immigrants rather than legal U.S. residents.

Andrew Sum, the director of the Center for Labor Market Studies, said, “One of the advantages of hiring, particularly young, undocumented immigrants, is the fact that employers do not have to pay health benefits or basic payroll taxes.”

“From 2008 to 2010, 1.1 million new migrants who have entered America since 2008 landed jobs, even as U.S. household employment declined by 6.26 million over that same period,” said Reuters.

On the other hand, employers like Ezequiel Arvizu, say that he has hired “new arrivals” not because the will work for less, but more so because they come to the U.S. more skilled than U.S.-born applicants.

“People often think construction is unskilled but the trades are very skilled and we need cement masons, carpenters, equipment operators,” he told a Reuters’ reporter over the phone.

“We are looking for qualified candidates and it just so happens that some of the candidates ... we select are legal immigrants. It means they have the skills we are looking for, “said Arvizu.

Read more at Reuters →

New Hispanic Health IT Initiative Announced

With the Hispanic population as the nation’s largest minority, HIMSS announces the establishment of a new HIMSS Latino Initiative to focus on health IT needs for the rapidly growing Hispanic/Latino market. 

HIMSS is a cause-based, not-for-profit organization exclusively focused on providing global leadership for the optimal use of IT and management systems for the betterment of healthcare and has been in existence for the last 50 years.  HIMSS represents more than 30,000 individual members, of which two thirds work in healthcare provider, governmental and not-for-profit organizations. HIMSS also includes over 470 corporate member.

During HIMSS11, the HIMSS Latino Initiative will host a program featuring a keynote speech by former U.S. Surgeon General Antonia Novello, MD. Other presentations include a panel with industry leaders including David R. Hunt, MD, FACS, Chief Medical Officer in the Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology at the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, and a networking reception. Panel discussions will include the State of Latino Health/Health Disparities, and Health IT Adoption in the Hispanic Community and Overcoming Barriers. The event will be held on Sunday, Feb. 20.

HIMSS’ new Latino Initiative will be led by a workgroup that is open to all HIMSS members and will meet monthly via teleconference. Luis Belen, President and CEO of VWCGlobal and Founder, President and CEO at Medic Success; and Danny Vargas, President of VARCom Solutions, have been named as co-chairs of this workgroup by HIMSS Board Chair C. Martin Harris, MD, MBA.

“I am excited to work with HIMSS leadership on this ground-breaking initiative, which will enable us to address the needs of Latino healthcare professionals and businesses,” said Belen.

“Having interacted with Hispanic communities throughout the country,” said Vargas, “I have seen first-hand the need to improve the delivery of health-related services to the Hispanic population. Health IT will play a vital role in bridging the gap in health disparities.”

Expanding HIMSS’ outreach into diverse communities is part of the Society’s strategic plan. Estimated at 16 percent today, by the year 2050, 30 percent of the U.S. population is projected to be Hispanic/Latino.

Read more by HS News Staff →

¡Ay Dios! Jesse James and Kat Von D are Engaged

¡Ay Dios! Jesse James and Kat Von D are Engaged

Photo: Kat Von D and Jesse James

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After a highly publicized divorce from award winning actress Sandra Bullock just last year, Jesse James has announced he is engaged to tattoo artist Kat Von D.

The 28-year-old, born Katherine von Drachenberg, in Monterrey, Nuevo Leon, Mexico and CEO of West Coast Choppers and television personality, Jesse James, 41, had only confirmed they were a couple last August, just one month after James’ divorce from Bullock was finalized.

James admitted to being unfaithful to his now ex-wife after a number of women came forward and revealed they had sexual relationships with him.

Thursday, James announced he and Von D were engaged saying, “You know sometimes the public and press gets it wrong. This is one of those times. 2010 was actually the best year of my life because I fell in love with my best friend. An amazing woman who stood behind me when the world turned their backs”, and declared that “Growing old with her is going to be a f——n’ blast!”

Though she was born in Mexico, Kat Von D’s parents are Argentinean of Spanish, Italian and German descent. Kat and her family moved to California when she was just four, and the owner of High Voltage Tattoo in West Hollywood, says the prominent Latin culture there is what has inspired a lot of her tattoo style.

The artist was married once before to fellow tattoo artist, Oliver Peck.

Since the engagement to her motorcycle man seems rather sudden, many are wondering how long this relationship will last, and Kat has already been warned by one of James’ former lovers.

Michelle “Bombshell” McGee, who came forward about sleeping with James while he was still married to Bullock, told RadarOnline, “Kat, what in the world are you thinking? I was with Jesse during his marriage – the guy’s not faithful, he doesn’t have a faithful bone in his body!” She continued with, “If he did it to me, if he did it to Sandra, he’s gonna do it to you, too – once a cheater always a cheater. He cheated on his wife, numerous times.”

Read more by HS News Staff →

First Haitians Deported from U.S. After Earthquake

Yesterday, the U.S. through Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) deported 26 Haitians, the first since the devastating earthquake of 2010.

ICE justified the deportation as part of their policy of ‘removing aliens who pose a threat to public safety.’  All 26 deportees had previously been convicted of a crime and one individual was acquitted of a terror plot.  The government did not explain why it chose to deport these individuals at this time when the country remains under siege from cholera and political instability. 

Members of the Haitian-American community were displeased and are concerned the deportees are going to a country still in ruins.  Others were more blunt, they are being sent to a “death trap” said Cheryl Little, director of the Florida Immigrant Advocacy Center. 

Lyglenson Lemorin is the most high profile deportee amongst the group; he was acquitted in 2007 of being part of a group of terrorists planning to bomb Sears Tower in Chicago.  Five others were convicted of the crime. 

Read more at Associated Press →

Feliz Cumpleaños to Plácido Domingo (VIDEO)

Feliz Cumpleaños to Plácido Domingo (VIDEO)

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Born José Plácido Domingo Embil, the world-renowned Spanish tenor and conductor, Plácido Domingo turned 70 today.

Friday, as he celebrates his birthday in his birthplace of Madrid, 20 of the world’s top opera singers will perform 15 arias in his honor. To add an element of surprise to the evening, Plácido will have no idea who has flown out to perform for him until the moment they take the stage.

Queen Sophia of Spain will be attending his birthday gala, which will be shown in the Plaza de Oriente on a giant screen, and will be broadcast in around 20 countries.

Over 50 years ago, in 1957, Plácido made his operatic debut in Monterrey, Mexico as Alfredo in Verdi’s “La Traviata.”

Though the Grammy-winner has performed in more that 130 stage roles— more than any tenor of his caliber—he received even greater international recognition outside the world of opera when he, José Carreras, and Luciano Pavarotti performed as The Three Tenors throughout the 1990s and early 2000s.

Having recently undergone surgery after doctors found a cancerous polyp in his colon, Plácido said, “At this stage every day I marvel at being able to sing,”

Earlier this month, Plácido told reporters, “To be in Madrid singing, with my family and friends, on such an important day for me is part of my birthday present.”

He also told reporters, “The biggest gift which I could receive on this birthday is to say that I can still continue singing for a few more years.”

¡Feliz Cumpleaños, Señor Domingo!

Read more by HS News Staff →

Fernando Botero’s New Year’s Resolution: To Finish His Passion of Jesus Christ Series.

Colombian painter Fernando Botero said he has finished thirty pieces, and none of them have satirical content.

“I’ve been painting the passion of Christ for the last four or five months. It is a dramatic subject that I’m approaching with a great respect,” said the renown artist.

Botero is uncertain of how many more paintings in the series is going to be, but he’s expecting to show it in New York before 2011 is over.

“It’s a major theme in the painting world,” Botero said “until the sixteenth century, it was a theme explored exclusively by painters.”

The artist also indicated that he won’t be making any sculptures on the subject matter, as he just doesn’t “see” the passion in that medium.


Read more by HS News Staff →

Tucson Boy, 9, Sells His Toys for Rep. Giffords, Raises $2.85

A nine-year-old Arizona boy, after hearing about his hometown’s recent shootings, felt he needed to do something to help.

On his way out the door with his brother, Isaac Saldana of Tucson, Arizona, heard reporters on TV say a little girl and Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords had been shot, and he couldn’t believe it.

“I just thought, whoa! I didn’t know that people carry around guns here in Tucson,” said Isaac. “It scared me a little.”

Getting the idea to help by raising money, Isaac decided to sell a number of his toys and even a bracelet his U.S. Marine father gave to him after returning from one of his deployments.

Not knowing his plan, Isaac’s mother, Aracely Saldana, 30, was surprised when she received a message from her son’s teacher. Isaac raised $2.85 selling his things, put it in an envelope with a “Get Well Soon” card, and mailed it before his mother even got the chance to ask him about the teacher’s e-mail.

“I didn’t even know what was going on. I received an e-mail from his teacher saying she just wanted to give me a heads-up that she caught him in class selling toys, so she took his backpack away later that day. I asked him what was going on and he told me the reason he was doing it was that he was trying to raise money to send to Gabrielle.”” she told the Huffington Post.

Immediately, Saldana said, she began to cry. “For him to go out of his way, [to] risk getting in trouble, [to] do a good thing—that was just awesome,” she said. “I am extremely proud of my children.”

Friday, after making remarkable progress after being shot in the head, Giffords’ is being transferred to a rehab. center.

When told about Isaac’s donation, Mark Kelly, Giffords husband, said he planned to “get Saldana his lunch money back.”

Isaac has already said he won’t take it back, saying, “I think she needs it.”

Read more at Huffington Post →

JesusHatesObama.com Nixed as Super Bowl Ad by FOX – What do You Think?

The Fox Network, home of Bill O’Reilly and Sarah Palin, has nixed its first Super Bowl commercial for February 6, 2011, which mixes, Jesus, Obama and capitalism.

The ad promotes the site JesusHatesObama.com, which is a retailer of kitschy items like tee shirts and coffee mugs making fun of the President, his policies and his alleged dislike of Jesus.  What’s the problem we ask, it’s capitalism at its best – we think?

We actually are wondering how JesusHatesObama.com can afford the very high-ticket price for a Super Bowl ad that can run in the millions of dollars.  Clearly they are selling a lot of $19.95 tee shirts that say: “Jesus Love You…but Hates Obama”

Related Videos

Read more at Mediaite →

Poll: Rahm Leading with 44% Closing in on February 22 Chicago Mayoral Election (VIDEO)

Poll: Rahm Leading with 44% Closing in on February 22 Chicago Mayoral Election (VIDEO)

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In a new Tribune/WGN Poll, Rahm Emanuel leads the pack with 44% support. In order to avoid a run-off election after February 22, Rahm’s goal is to garner the 50% plus one vote to declare an outright win.

Battling for second place and hoping to force an April runoff are former U.S. Sen. Carol Moseley Braun and onetime Chicago Board of Education President Gery Chico.

Emanuel’s campaign strategy has included portraying himself as the heir apparent to Mayor Daley. This was strengthened on Thursday as he announced he has collected $11.8 million so far in his bid for mayor. Chico, the candidate considered to be next in the fundraising department, reported raising nearly $2.5 million.

Emanuel has very strong name recognition as nearly all voters report they are familiar with him, and he is viewed favorably by nearly six in 10. A negative view of Emanuel is held by only 13 percent of those responding.

Both Chico and del Valle are struggling to gain traction in the African-American community. Chico is backed by only 3 percent of black voters, and del Valle by 1 percent.

Chico, who is Daley’s former chief of staff, scored a 10 percent gain however among white voters since the last Tribune poll. Chico also gained 14 percentage points among Latino voters in the last five weeks. But Emanuel has the support of 30 percent of Latinos, compared with 26 percent for Chico, 23 percent for del Valle and 9 percent for Braun.

The poll of 708 likely registered voters was conducted Saturday through Wednesday and has an error margin of 3.7 percentage points with 9% reporting being undecided.



Read more by HS News Staff →

Texas Bill Could Deny Mexican Consulate Staff Entry to Any Public, State Schools

Texas Bill Could Deny Mexican Consulate Staff Entry to Any Public, State Schools

Photo: State Rep. Allen Fletcher

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A Texas state representative is trying to “send a message” to undocumented immigrants, by drafting and filing a bill that looks to deny entry onto public schools and state universities to foreign consular officials that arrive to help anyone obtain non-U.S. identification cards.

State Representative Allen Fletcher, who wrote House Bill 428 that was just filed, said, “The bottom line is we’re trying to keep foreign consuls from being on our campuses. I don’t like them using our public facilities and our schools to basically access the foreign nationals that are in our country and give them an opportunity to take advantage of our benefits when they’re here illegally.”

The Matrícula Consular de Alta Seguridad (MCAS or Consular Identification Card) is an identification card issued to Mexican nationals residing outside of Mexico regardless of their immigration status. The card is issued by the Government of Mexico through their consulate offices.

During his interview with the Rio Grande Guardian, the state rep., who spent 21 years with the Houston Police Department admitted to not knowing exactly what the cards can be used for, but added, ““Basically a matrícula card is just some legitimate form of ID. I would think that if you have that matrícula card you have an ID that allows you to basically interject yourself into the system,”

Fletcher, a “career enforcement guy” was asked what someone needs to gain the identification cards and said he was unsure, but stated, “…Probably tell them your name is Allen Fletcher, and they crank it out for you. I’m under the impression, based on what I’ve seen that they’re not really requiring (applicants) to provide much of anything.”

In the interview Fletcher mentioned that though he thinks a similar bill will never pass in Texas, he is a supporter of Arizona’s SB 1070.  The controversial law allows for local officers to ask for proof of immigration status if they have “reasonable suspicion” to think someone is in the country illegally. Fletcher expressed that instead of trying to pass big law changing bills like SB 1070, Texas lawmakers are looking to smaller bills to “send a message” to anyone in the country without documentation.

“(HB 428) is a judicious way for us to start putting things in place to make it more difficult for them to access our public benefits illegally. So we’re hoping this will get their attention and let them know: ‘You’re not going to go onto our school grounds, you’re not going to go onto our public facilities and issue these cards, without making sure that folks have a legitimate right to have the card’.”

Read more at Rio Grande Guardian →

Oliver Martinez of Albuquerque is Persistent:  Arrested for the 45th Time for Shoplifting

Albuquerque police arrest dozens of people in a given week for shoplifting and aren’t fazed that is until they see the face of Oliver Martinez – AGAIN.

Martinez was just arrested in the area for the 45th time,  25 of those times were for shoplifting in Albuquerque and 20 times in other jurisdictions.  This last time he literally walked into police hands by attempting to sell undercover officers tools he had just stolen from Lowe’s.

Richard J. Berry, the Mayor of Albuquerque has made property theft a legislative priority; and we don’t know how much Martinez is to blame.  He doesn’t appear to serve any time for his multitude of crimes nor get any counseling for his apparent propensity for shoplifting. 

Read more at Albuquerque Journal →

Mexican Sewage Polluting California Beaches

Millions of gallons of raw sewage are flowing down Mexico’s Tijuana River to the Pacific Ocean, prompting the closure of San Diego, California area beaches, officials said.

The Baja California, Mexico, Health Department said the 30-inch-diameter pipe linking a pump station to the Punta Bandera treatment plant broke about a mile south of the U.S. border during December’s rainstorms.

Estimates of the size of the spill vary from 1.3 million gallons to 30 million gallons per day, and will be among the largest single incidents in the last 10 years to affect San Diego County, the San Diego Union-Tribune reported. The issue of wastewater has caused tension along the U.S.-Mexican border for the last 70 years because Tijuana’s sewage system has not kept up with modern methods. U.S. and Mexican agencies have tried to minimize the pollution by constructing treatment plants and other facilities, the Union-Tribune reported.

Read more at DHS →

Spain: World’s Number One in Cyber Pirate

Spain: World’s Number One in Cyber Pirate

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45% of Spain’s Internet users use non authorized music distribution websites, making them the number one or numero uno area of cyber piracy.

A 30 page report released by the world’s record industry dedicates a whole chapter to the European nation, since it’s the country with the most internet users that log into non-authorized web-sites.  Brazil is the second, with 44% of their users sharing media illegally, whereas the European mean is at a 23%.

A direct consequence of having close to half of Spain acquire their music illegally, the country’s record sales have plummeted from 26,000 records sold every week in 2004, to a mere 6.000 in 2010, and that statistic is getting worse.

Up and coming musicians are the most affected by this, since record labels feel that investing in established bands proves far more profitable. Despite the tough times for the plastic record industry, digital sales have sky rocketed, representing today almost 30% of music sales, when in 2004, digital sales were at a 2%.

CyberPiracy remains a tough problem to tackle, and for every illegal distribution site that is closed, six others appear. It is expected that CyberPiracy will soon become a terrible headache for film and tv distribution sites, as downloading 12 hours worth of Star Wars films and the entire season 3 of the X-Files is quicker these days than going to the mall to purchase them.

Read more by HS News Staff →

BREAKING NEWS: Mexican Musician Kalimba ARRESTED in El Paso (VIDEO)

BREAKING NEWS: Mexican Musician Kalimba ARRESTED in El Paso (VIDEO)

Photo: KALIMBA Arrested

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U.S. and Mexican authorities say that Mexican singer Kalimba was arrested Thursday at El Paso International Airport. Officials said that Kalimba was taken into custody because he lacked the proper documents to travel to the U.S.

Border Patrol spokesman Ramiro Cordero confirmed the arrest of Kalimba Thursday. The singer was sent back to Mexico at the Zaragosa bridge southeast of El Paso late Thursday night, Mexican officials told the El Paso Times.

It is expected Kalimba will face a judge later on today.


Francisco Alor, Attorney General of Quintana Roo made effective an order (issued by Judge Daniel Esteban Farah) to arrest Kalimba for the crime of rape and assault of a minor,  and the promoter for corruption of minors.

On Wednesday morning, Alor said the two men were fugitives of justice from the moment the warrant was issued, and asked 32 police officers to search for Kalimba throughout the nation, an event that sprung a videogame on the internet called “Run Kalimba, Run” where the objective is to evade the 32 cops while jumping obstacles by clicking.

If convicted, Kalimba could be in prison for 25 years, to life.

This news is in development.




Read more by HS News Staff →

Mexican Actor Eduardo Verastegui Vows to Build Largest Pro-Life Clinic in U.S.

The founder of Mantle of Guadalupe, Mexican producer and actor Eduardo Verastegui has announced ambitious plans – to build the largest pro-life clinic in the U.S. to be located in Los Angeles.

Verastegui made this announcement at the first-ever gala to benefit Mantle of Guadalupe, a pro-life medical center located in east L.A., strategically located a few miles from 10 abortion clinics. 

The Mantle was founded by Verstegui and thanks to friends like actor Sean Astin, Philip Rivers from the San Diego Chargers and others, it is free of charge to its mostly Hispanic patients providing pre-natal care, ultrasounds and natural family planning. 

Verastegui was born in Tamaulipas, Mexico and is a former member of the pop group Kairo and has appeared in countless telenovelas and movies like Chasing Papi and Bella, which won the People’s Choice award at the 2007 Toronto Film Festival. 

“I will not use my talents except to elevate my Christian, pro-life and Hispanic values,” Verastegui promised the guests.  As the gala concluded Verastegui introduced several Hispanic mothers whose babies were saved thanks to the work at Mantle.

Read more at Catholic News Agency →

Former President of Mexico Wants to Legalize Drugs, Specifically Marijuana

Former President of Mexico Wants to Legalize Drugs, Specifically Marijuana

Photo: Vicente Fox, former President of Mexico

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Vicente Fox, president of Mexico from 2000 to 2006, has changed his stance against drugs to one in favor of the legalization of all drugs. 

While in office, Fox was a fierce opponent of Mexico’s drug, once claiming that he would wage the “mother of all battles” again drug kingpins.  However, the violent fall out that has occurred since the government began attacking those in charge of the illegal drug trade has caused Fox to change his opinion on this topic.

Although Fox is most specific about the legalization of marijuana, he claims that the principal of legality should be applied to all illegal drugs, claiming, “Prohibition didn’t work in the Garden of Eden. Adam ate the apples.”

Fox states that the control of production should be taken away from the criminals and given to the government.  “We have to take all the production chain out of the hands of criminals and into the hands of producers – so there are farmers that produce marijuana and manufacturers that process it and distributors that distribute it, and shops that sell it,” Fox said, adding, “I don’t want to say that legalizing means that drugs are good. They are not good but bad for your health and you shouldn’t take them. But ultimately, this responsibility is with citizens.”

Fox is not the first former President to question the effectiveness of the war on drugs either.  In 2009, Ernesto Zedillo (former president of Mexico), Cesar Gaviria (former Colombian President), and Fernando Cardoso (former Brazilian President) all released statements saying that the war on drugs had been failure. Yet every single one of these men made these statements upon the exit from office due to the fact that coming out for the legalization of drugs is known as a foolproof way to lose votes.  However, Fox claims that his stance changed after the very nature of the situation changed and the extinction of illegal drugs has proved to be far to expensive for the people of Mexico. 

“When I was in government, things were not as bad as they are now.  There is a growing cost in not resolving this problem, in not finding a form of truce, a way to avoid the brutal violence that is hurting Mexico.  The cost is growing exponentially,” said Fox, going on to point out that this expensive war was going on to lose business for Mexican revenue.

Read more at Mexico's Ex-President Vicente Fox: Legalize Drugs →

Obama Administration Creates New Office to Audit Employers I-9 Records

Obama Administration Creates New Office to Audit Employers I-9 Records

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The Obama administration has announced plans to crackdown on employers who hire illegal immigrants by creating a new audit office that is responsible for the verification of company hiring records.

In an interview, John Morton, chief of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement, a unit of the Department of Homeland Security, said the Employment Compliance Inspection Center would “address a need to conduct audits even of the largest employers with a very large number of employees.” The office would be announced Thursday, he said.

Morton said that the center would be staffed with specialists who will pore over the I-9 employee files collected from companies targeted for audits.

Since ICE initiated the IMAGE program in 2006, only 115 companies have signed on, with many reluctant to open their books to government scrutiny and to invest in training and new systems to bolster their employer-verification process, experts say.

During the Bush administration, immigration enforcement was based primarily in raids on facilities, with the illegal workers being deported. Very few companies and their executives were prosecuted.

In contrast, the Obama administration has put the focus the employers with “silent raids.”

About 11 million illegal immigrants live in the U.S., according to government estimates.

Read more at AP →

Cathy Cruz: Identified as Tumbling Texter, Might Sue Mall for Making her a Laughing Stock (VIDEO)

Cathy Cruz: Identified as Tumbling Texter, Might Sue Mall for Making her a Laughing Stock (VIDEO)

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Cathy Cruz Marrero was a viral YouTube star even before she had a chance to dry herself off from her tumble into a Pennsylvania mall fountain.  If you don’t know Cathy you know what she did last week when she fell into the Berkshire Mall fountain as she was texting and the embarrassing moment was captured on cell phone video that went viral.

Her wish after falling over the knee-high wall and getting thoroughly soaked was she hoped no one saw her.  No such luck.  She recounted the moments to Good Morning America along with her attorney. 

Unfortunately for the Berkshire Mall, Cathy doesn’t see this as such a funny matter.  Her attorney, James Polyak, says they are in the early phase of an investigation and “hold people responsible” for the release of the security video via cell phone. 

The other problem Cruz is countered with after her new found fame is her credit card theft charges in 2007 when she worked at Zale’s Jewelers at another mall.  She used a customer’s credit card for a total of $5,000 worth of personal purchases and vowed to make good on repayment – she didn’t and if authorities were wondering where she was, they found her on YouTube. 

Read more at NY Daily News →

FridayJanuary 21, 2011