NOMINATIONS: Meet the long-shot contender to lead Interior — Tuesday, January 29, 2019 — www.eenews.net

The Mountain States Legal Foundation claims two former Interior secretaries among its alumni, and conservative activists are pushing to add a third individual to that group: former foundation President William Perry Pendley.

Pendley, who had helmed the conservative law firm since 1989, left his post late last year without fanfare.

“BTW, no longer with @MSLF but NEVER retired; busy as ever!” Pendley posted to his Twitter account on Dec. 9, referring to the foundation.

But a few days later, Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke announced his resignation from the Trump administration, and Pendley’s name became among those floated to replace the former Montana lawmaker.

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#BREAKING Weapons-grade plutonium secretly sent to facility north of Las Vegas | LVRJ

WASHINGTON — Weapons-grade plutonium was sent to a federal facility north of Las Vegas from South Carolina in November, before the Silver State filed a federal lawsuit to stop the shipment of the bomb-making material, the general counsel for the National Nuclear Security Administration disclosed in a court filing Wednesday.

The revelation drew a quick rebuke from Gov. Steve Sisolak who said he was “beyond outraged” at the deception of the U.S. Department of Energy.

“They lied to the State of Nevada, misled a federal court, and jeopardized the safety of Nevada’s families and environment,” Sisolak said in a statement.

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Facebook pays users to sideload data-gathering VPN in apparent violation of Apple privacy policies

Importantly, Facebook relies on the three software testing platforms to enable sideloading of the Research app, effectively bypassing Apple’s App Store and its stringent guidelines. Facebook does not disseminate Research through Apple’s TestFlight, presumably because the system involves an app review process and 10,000 user limit.

The entire operation smacks of deception and appears to fly in the face of Apple’s good faith developer agreements. In particular, Research asks users to install an Enterprise Developer Certificate and VPN, granting root access to a bulk of iPhone’s transmitted data, the report says. As noted by TechCrunch, Apple’s developer guidelines place restrictions on the Enterprise Developer Certificate, noting companies are to use the privilege only for internal apps distributed to employees.

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Activists making ‘water drops’ for migrants near border say government intimidation is rising – Washington Post

This month, four volunteers from a similar organization in Arizona, called No More Deaths, were convicted of misdemeanor charges of abandonment of property and entering a wildlife refuge without a permit after leaving food and water in a remote national wildlife refuge infamous for migrant fatalities. The Pima County medical examiner has documented 137 migrant deaths in this area since 2001, although No More Deaths advocates say they believe the number is much higher.

Each volunteer could receive up to six months in federal prison and a $500 fine for crimes that Judge Bernardo P. Velasco wrote eroded a “national decision to maintain the Refuge in its pristine nature.”

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Grazing Permits Restored for Hammond Family | Drovers

The Bureau of Land Management (BLM) has restored grazing permits for the Hammond family from Oregon after losing the right to graze following federal charges that were later pardoned.

The announcement was made on Jan. 28 that Hammond Ranches would be able to graze their BLM allotments again. The BLM had stripped the right to graze after Dwight and Steven Hammond were convicted of felony arson in 2012. They were sentenced to five years imprisonment under the Antiterrorism and Effective Death Penalty Act of 1996.

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Justice Department seeks to appeal stinging defeat against Cliven Bundy in Nevada standoff case – Washington Times

Federal prosecutors said Wednesday they plan to appeal their demoralizing defeat in the Nevada standoff trial, which saw a federal judge rebuke prosecutors for “flagrant misconduct” and dismiss all charges against rancher Cliven Bundy and two of his sons.

Elizabeth O. White, assistant U.S. attorney for Nevada, assured the court that the appeal would be filed by Feb. 6 after asking for a 14-day extension, saying the “review process is complete and the Solicitor General has authorized the government’s appeal.”

“Undersigned counsel further advises that the draft brief is nearly complete, editing of the completed portions has begun, and she has begun the laborious process of preparing the excerpts of record and updating the record citations in brief to the excerpts of record,” Ms. White said in the motion.

The Justice Department already had requested and received two extensions, but it was unclear until Wednesday whether prosecutors would go forward with the appeal.

Bundy attorney Larry Klayman condemned the decision to file the appeal, which would go before the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 9th Circuit. He accused the government of “circling the wagons” to protect prosecutors, including former Acting U.S. Attorney for Nevada Steven Myhre.

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A New Nevada? Movement initiated to split rural, urban communities | Pahrump

In a news release, committee chairman Robert Thomas III explained, “The court decision, Reynolds v. Sims, mandated that state senators be elected by population. This decision created what our Founding Fathers feared; a tyranny of the majority (‘mob rule’). Now, large population centers out-vote all the rest of rural Nevada with distressing regularity. That injustice can be corrected by the formation of a New Nevada State.”

The release goes on to state the group’s belief that the interests and values of rural Nevadans differ greatly from those who reside in large cities. It further asserts that advances for the urban areas often come at the expense of the remainder of the population.

To help generate interest in the New Nevada State Movement, the group hosted a “Declaration Day Rally” in front of the Nye County Courthouse on Jan. 21. There, a Declaration of Independence was read, outlining the intent to have rural counties secede from Nevada and form a brand new state, with its own government, which would be controlled by the vote of the rural people.

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Western federal lands policy open to challenge, attorney says

Federal ownership of vast acreage across the West is vulnerable to a constitutional challenge by affected state governments, according to a public lands attorney.

While court rulings until now have supported the federal government’s control over Western public lands, attorney George Wentz said those cases predate the Federal Land Policy and Management Act of 1976, which made federal ownership permanent.

An argument could be made that federal ownership of major swaths of 12 Western states effectively deprives them of the same sovereignty as the remaining 38 states, he said.

“Why are we inferior because we chose to live in the West?” Wentz asked growers at the American Farm Bureau Federation’s annual convention in New Orleans on Jan. 13.

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Can Trump “Flip” the Circuit Courts? He’s Closer Than You Think | First Liberty

Right now, there are over 140 judicial vacancies that need to be filled, and needless to say, Senate Republicans have their work cut out for them.

And because judges have such profound influence in the way you and millions of Americans live out your faith, we’d like to let you in on a little secret about judicial nominations.

Here’s some “inside baseball” you’re not going to get anywhere else.

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Newspaper column: States should not be granted absolute immunity « #4TH ST8

The U.S. Supreme Court heard arguments in a case this past week that could alter the ability of a private citizen to seek justice in his state’s courts when public employees from another state abuse their powers and step over the line of common decency. The case is titled Franchise Tax Board of California v. Hyatt.

It all started in 1993 when a tax auditor for the Franchise Tax Board of California read a newspaper article about how wealthy California computer chip inventor, Gilbert Hyatt, had recently moved to Nevada, which, unlike California, has no income tax. The auditor investigated and concluded Hyatt had not moved to Nevada as early as he claimed. The tax board said Hyatt owed California nearly $15 million in taxes and penalties.

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Solicitor general still undecided on new trial for Bundy

OJ Appellate Chief and Assistant U.S. Attorney Elizabeth White revealed Francisco’s apparent indecision on Wednesday in a request to delay opening briefs in the case, which centers on a 2014 armed standoff between the Bundys and their supporters and the Bureau of Land Management.

“Despite the government’s diligent efforts, the Solicitor General’s review of the matter is not yet complete,” White wrote, pointing to the “massive” record in the case. “His Office, and the Solicitor General himself, are carefully reviewing the issues, the record, and the draft government brief.”

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#APNewsBreak: New pen may allow sale of horses for slaughter

RENO, Nev. (AP) — The U.S. Forest Service has built a new corral for wild horses in Northern California, which could allow it to bypass federal restrictions and sell the animals for slaughter.

The agency acknowledged in court filings in a potentially precedent-setting legal battle that it built the pen for mustangs gathered in the fall on national forest land along the California-Nevada border because of restrictions on such sales at other federal holding facilities.

The agency denies claims by horse advocates it has made up its mind to sell the more than 250 horses for slaughter. But it also says it may have no choice because of the high cost of housing the animals and continued ecological impacts it claims overpopulated herds are having on federal rangeland.

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Full stay issued in Pahrump water order appeal

After issuing a temporary postponement earlier this month, the Nevada Supreme Court has now ordered that the district court ruling reversing Nevada State Engineer Order #1293A be stayed until the appeal filed by the engineer’s office has made its way through the system and a final determination is made.

“Appellant state engineer filed an emergency motion to stay the district court’s order pending appeal and we entered a temporary stay pending receipt and consideration of any opposition, which respondents (Pahrump Fair Water) have now filed. Having considered appellant’s motion and supporting documents, respondents’ opposition and appellants’ reply under the NRAP8 (Nevada Rules of Appellate Procedure) factors, we conclude that the balance of harms weighs in favor of a stay,” the filing, signed off by Supreme Court Justices Jim Hardesty, Lidia Stiglich and Abbi Silver, states. “Accordingly, we grant appellant’s motion and stay enforcement of the district court’s Dec. 6 order granting judicial review and reversing state engineer Order #1293A, pending further order of this court.”

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Brian “Booda” Cavalier, 47, of Mesa, Arizona, was told he won’t serve any more time

Brian “Booda” Cavalier, 47, of Mesa, Arizona, was told he won’t serve any more time than the 20 months he spent in federal custody between his arrest in early 2016 and his guilty plea in October 2017 to two charges of conspiracy to impede and injure a federal officer.

Navarro also sentenced Cavalier to one year of federal supervision, ordered him to undergo substance abuse treatment and prohibited him from communicating with other people connected with the standoff.

Cavalier also pleaded guilty to a weapons charge in Oregon and was sentenced in 2016 to time already served in federal custody in Portland for his role in a 41-day armed occupation of a wildlife refuge with more than two dozen people including Bundy sons Ryan and Ammon Bundy in January 2016.

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New Organization to Build U.S. Southern Border Wall – Announced by War Hero, Triple-Amputee Veteran behind “Fund the Wall” GoFundMe

WASHINGTON—Heartened by the overwhelming support of fellow Americans who have donated over $20 million to the viral GoFundMe campaign “We the People Will Fund the Wall,” war hero and triple-amputee veteran Brian Kolfage announced the launch of a 501(c)4 called “We Build the Wall, Inc.” which will fund the private construction of a wall along the United States’ Southern Border.

“We are grateful for the President’s steadfast commitment to border security, the single most important issue plaguing our country,” said Kolfage. “Rather than subsidizing the federal government, which has betrayed the American people by obstructing President Donald Trump’s agenda, ‘We Build the Wall’ is taking the President’s signature campaign promise into our own hands. I personally will not take a penny of compensation from these donations incurred in the furtherance of this mission.”

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Nevada Supreme Court Temporary Stay issued in Pahrump water order case | #PVT

The Nevada Supreme Court has issued a temporary stay in the case of Water Order #1293A, allowing the Nevada state engineer, for the moment, to continue requiring water rights relinquishments for all new domestic wells drilled in Pahrump.

The temporary stay comes as part of the appeal process, with the state engineer going to the Nevada Supreme Court after a district court judge ruled against the office in the lawsuit brought forward by Pahrump Fair Water.

However, it is only a temporary stay and it is possible that the Nevada Supreme Court could reverse that stay after considering the opposition provided by Pahrump Fair Water.

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#Perspectives: Authentic vs. superficial leadership, can you spot the difference? – Bryan Hyde

OPINION — If someone asked you to describe what an example of leadership might look like, what would you say? For most of us, the temptation would be irresistible to point to someone else – anyone else – who is in a position of prominence.

I can think of a better example.

A longtime friend in Southern Utah recently noted on Facebook that, after 45 years, he was changing his voter registration to unaffiliated.

This was no petulant overreaction to a political race that didn’t go his way. It was a conscious and principled decision to part ways with a political party that has been in decline for many years.

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Injunctive relief denied in Nevada Assembly appointment lawsuit | #PVT

The hearing today was attended by many of the disenfranchised Nye County voters whose presence showed support for my lawsuit against the unlawful actions of the outgoing Nye County Board of County Commissioners in the process to replace Dennis Hof. However, it becomes a very expensive process to fight city hall (the county) and the court did not grant our petition for injunctive relief,” Goedhart said. “With an unlimited taxpayer-funded checkbook, Nye County clearly has the upper hand moving forward.”

Regardless of this, Goedhart said he plans to continue pressing his case. “In speaking with my legal team… the consensus was that… there are excellent grounds to continue the lawsuit. I have received hundreds of phone calls, texts, and emails from Nye County voters encouraging me to press on. After careful consideration, I have instructed my legal team to press forward in our pursuit of justice,” he stated.

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TRANQUIL? ‘Pile’ of 20 or So Corpses Found Near US-Mexico Border – BLP

About 20 dead bodies were found along the U.S./Mexico border in the Rio Grande Valley, mere miles from where CNN’s Jim Acosta reported Thursday that things were “tranquil” in border land.

“Mexico’s president says an undetermined number of bodies have been found in the northern Mexico border state of Tamaulipas in what appears to have been a mass killing involving drug gangs,” said KRON4. “Local media report that between 19 and 20 burned bodies were found near the remains of burned-out pickup trucks near the border town of Miguel Aleman.”

There are several towns called Miguel Aleman in Mexico, but the report said that this town was located in the Rio Grande Valley. The only Miguel Aleman in the Rio Grande Valley is just an hour and a half from where CNN’s Jim Acosta said things were “tranquil” near McAllen, Texas, where there is a border wall:

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Left-wing Hate Group SPLC Faces Charges of Racketeering and Abetting Theft

The smear merchants of the Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC) may have set out to destroy the wrong lawyer. PJ Media is reporting that last month, Glen Keith Allen, a Baltimore attorney, filed suit against the SPLC, alleging the left-wing hate group paid for stolen documents, violated confidentiality agreements, and caused him to be fired by the City of Baltimore over Allen’s former association with the National Alliance (NA), a white nationalist group.

Allen has admitted to his past support for the NA and now claims he deeply regrets that association.

Allen’s lawsuit basically accuses the SPLC of punishing “thought crime” through intimidation and character assassination. According to the complaint, the SPLC has chosen to “draw lines of political or cultural orthodoxy, develop massive surveillance networks and extensive dossiers and severely punish perceived transgressors who cross those lines, seem to cross them, or even seem to think about crossing them.

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The State of Hate | Is the Southern Poverty Law Center, judging hate fairly?

The SPLC’s definition of a hate group is “an organization that — based on its official statements or principles, the statements of its leaders, or its activities — has beliefs or practices that attack or malign an entire class of people, typically for their immutable characteristics,” including race, religion, ethnicity and sexual orientation. It’s a standard that is in line with the latest thinking among scholars of hate, and also one that intentionally parallels the FBI’s definition of a hate crime.

Does an alliance of lawyers with conservative Christian leanings that has won nine cases before the U.S. Supreme Court in the past seven years meet that criteria? According to Heidi Beirich, director of the SPLC’s Intelligence Project — which produces the hate list — the decision to put the Alliance Defending Freedom on the list for 2016 was a judgment call that went all the way up to top leadership at the SPLC.

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Editorial: Rooftop solar mandate not a good idea « 4TH ST8

Now that California’s Energy Commission has approved mandatory efficiency standards for all homes built in the state after Jan. 1, 2020, including the requirement that rooftop solar panels be used, a self-styled environmental group is calling on every state to require solar panels on new homes.

Environment America Research & Policy Center says the requirement would save homeowners money and clean up the environment.

The California Energy Commission predicts that its new efficiency measures will mean new homes will use 7 percent less energy, but when the solar generation is factored in the home will use about 53 percent less electricity from the grid. So the bulk of the “savings” will come from the solar panels.

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Good-bye 2018 and good riddance « 4TH ST8

It’s called voting with your feet.

A remarkable number of well-heeled Americans are doing just that, and it should serve as a warning to Nevada voters and candidates as we enter an election year. Though Republican governors in recent years have shepherded through the Legislature record-high tax increases, Nevada still fares fairly well in comparison to other states when it comes to the tax burden borne by citizens of the Silver State. …

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California: 31 New Laws That May Impact Californians in 2019 | ECT

In 2018, California Governor Jerry Brown signed more than 1,016 Bills into law. Here are 31 bills you should know about that just may impact your life.

Prior to getting to those, quick reminder that those of you crossing bridges, will now pay an extra dollar. Crossing the Bay Bridge is now $7. Bridge fare at Antioch, Benicia-Martinez, Carquinez, Dumbarton, Richmond-San Rafael and San Mateo-Hayward bridges is now $6.

Also going into effect is Proposition 63 which now requires background checks for ammunition purchases and large-capacity ammunition magazine ban. By July 1, 2019, vendors selling ammunition (see AB 156 below) will begin logging and keeping records of ammunition sales.

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