Thursday, February 26, 2015

QUESTION: Can Drones Flown at Airports Save Lives? The Answer may be YES!

Los Angeles, CA—I had a brainstorm while watching a news story of those dangerous and sometimes deadly bird strikes that plague airports.
I wasted no time in calling my American Airlines pilot pal to ask him his thoughts on my idea.  He loved the idea and is convinced it’s inexpensive, workable and lifesaving.  Wow! This is the very same buddy that got me hooked on drones!  
For some reason birds love airports and thrive in the critical runway areas where planes take off and land.  They are often seen as high as 5,000 feet and collisions between aircraft and birds have been catastrophic.
When you try to deal with the airport bird problem battle lines are drawn between the airports and the bird lovers.  Poisoning or shooting the birds is not on the table as a viable solution.
My idea is a simple one.  Airport workers could use small drones to stalk and chase the birds away.  Today airports must use workers in various ground vehicles to chase the birds.  Fences and brush too often keep the workers from getting close enough to the birds to frighten them away.  
I’ve had birds actually attack my drones in the air.  Thankfully I’ve evaded them so far.  I know birds have a sense of hearing and survival and my drone like airplanes can’t seem to intimidate. However there are other ways! 
I’m convinced that a drone equipped with a small electronic loudspeaker emitting a siren, horn or some frequency could solve the problem.  This would frighten or annoy the birds into finding peace elsewhere.  The drones of course would harm no birds or planes. 
The most vulnerable portion of airplane flights is during takeoff and landing.  Flocks of birds have shut down jet engines on multiple occasions.   
Pilots are required to report bird sightings and that consumes a significant amount of time and paperwork.  Fewer birds mean more efficient flight operations in addition to improved safety.
This morning I spoke briefly with one of the bird experts at Cornell University.   His first thought was that this idea might well be an effective solution.  That expert promised to bring this up with his peers for discussion.
This idea merits immediate research and testing by the slow moving FAA. 
Since this idea is potentially life saving to please feel free to send this around to other people interested in the safety of our skies.

Monday, February 23, 2015

Our Malls Only Encourage and Enable a Future Epic Islamic Slaughter of Their Customers!

Los Angeles, CA—The recent video threat to the Minnesota Mall of America and similar targets has some people on edge.   They certainly should be!
The threat in Minnesota is not foolproof because that state allows for concealed weapon permits and frankly those prohibition signs are being ignored more often by permitted gun owners than the mall operators realize.
Should things get difficult, armed citizens will always follow their training and do whatever it takes to survive. A quick thinking armed citizen could really put a cramp in some terrorist's plans. 
However right now pending the resolution of Peruta vs. San Diego, the draconian gun ban is in place.  All of the densely populated cities of California are Gun Free Zones.  Meaning only those willing to break the law will be armed.
No gun law will ever prevent or deter any dedicated terrorist or criminal from using bombs, gasoline or firearms to murder innocent people.
Terrorists would be far more successful at a Mall such as the Los Angeles Beverly Center shown above.   They have no armed security and the likelihood of facing an armed citizen is nearly zero.  Plenty of people could be murdered before the cops would arrive. 
Eventually the cops will win and the terrorists could claim their 50 virgins in the hereafter.  The mess would be huge international publicity.
Mall security in America has been under the control of gun hating property management companies.  They have long considered armed security an insurance liability nightmare. 
Mall security duties have been reduced to marshaling lost children and the elderly that can’t remember where they parked their cars.   Should they see a disturbance or a crime, they are simply supposed to call the police.
I don’t care what background or training members of mall security departments may have, if they’re discovered with a personal defense weapon beyond lady’s ineffective pepper spray they would be fired on the spot.    
Calls to the police these days would actually be made by shoppers that are all carrying cell phones. The security guards are nothing more that more potential hostages and victims.
The pathetic mall security procedures are all set in stone.  Local law enforcement cannot provide security for private businesses.   They can of course respond to service calls but the cops have no sufficient presence in any mall to immediately engage armed terrorists.
What every mall needs is a well-trained and armed security force to deal with active shooter incidents.  That will never happen without a massive change in our culture.
The only viable solution is to allow the law-abiding people to protect themselves under the already granted right to keep and carry arms.
Before that happens malls will begin TSA style screening of shoppers.  That will end the shopping mall as we know it and simply they will simply surrender their business to

It’s time For Another Holocaust, This Time in America.

Washington, DC—What’s past is prologue.  We humans never learn from history as we allow politicians to control, plunder, pillage and eventually murder us. 
No Holocaust can ever take place without massive ignorance ambivalence and apathy by the governed.  We are at that point once again.
The most important tool for dictators is absolute power.  That’s usually willingly handed over to despotic politicians that can convince their population that liberty must be somehow balanced and compromised with security.
We once had a Bill of Rights but we surrendered it piecemeal to our politicians.  They somehow convinced us into believing that they needed enhanced police power to insure our safety.
They swayed far too many of us into believing that our thoughts of self-reliance was really just a fantasy. 
Like every despotic government many our own politicians persuaded a significant portion of the population into becoming totally dependent on government for their every need. 
Soon it’s alway a simple situation of,  cooperate with government or stave and die.
For us a huge milestone was reached on September 11, 2001 with the Islamist attack on the World Trade Center in New York.
Our politicians claimed they needed more police power to insure our safety.  We quickly surrendered a massive amount of liberty by accepting TSA tyranny and groping at every airport and train station. 
Adding insult to injury we embraced the Patriot Act and allowed our politicians to steal and squander hundreds of billions of tax dollars to fund their scam.
They never bothered to go through the political process to repeal our Bill of Rights.  Instead we simply turned a blind eye as they worked around and trampled on our hard won freedom.
Yes, this happened under George W. Bush and arguably well before his regrettable reign.
Americans led by the Leftist media were disenchanted with Bush and the Patriot Act and were led to a new, relatively unknown Messiah, Barack Obama. 
Obama was and is unashamedly a product of a Communist inspired upbringing and Chicago’s infamous political machine.  
To most voters anything seemed better than Bush.  Many traditional Liberals seemed only too willing to convince each other that Obama would actually undo the Patriot Act and concentrate on Social Justice.  Perhaps he’d even end our death penalty.
What Obama actually delivered was every bit of Bush’s policy, but on steroids!  That and the most mind-boggling deficit and tax increases ever in American History. 
The massive Socialist, Obamacare train wreck is not part of this, so I’m not even going there.
Some strange happenings were going on in May of 2013 inside a Hong Kong hotel room.  A journalist, Glenn Greenwald along with a small group of German documentary filmmakers were meeting with somebody revealing the most massive privacy invasion in the history of the world. 
A young, bright government contractor placed his duty to the American people over government thugs.  Edward Snowden revealed that a group of government criminals orchestrated the largest violation of Civil Rights in American history.  It was none other than Barack Obama leading this massive betrayal of trust.
Lets examine some reality here.  The Patriot Act, TSA assault on liberty or the illegal NSA spying never exposed or prevented a single known terrorist act.  Some of or politicians will claim otherwise but can never cite an example.
Instead a select group of politicians and bureaucrats had unlimited access to every phone call, text message, email, financial transaction and trade secret of yours or mine. 
These are no less than the tools most needed by extortionists, insider traders and of course dictators. 
Suddenly Obama and his henchmen gained massive power over uncooperative members of the media, Congress and the nation’s judges including the Supreme Court.
It’s been long accepted that, he who controls the information controls the world.  He is Obama and the power he seized is far greater than even Adolf Hitler had over Germany.
If you don’t think Obama has absolute power, simply ask yourself why Snowden is a wanted fugitive instead of our despotic President and those co-conspiring criminals that stole our privacy?
I was amazed last night to see Hollywood honor those brave German filmmakers that brought us the most important documentary of our time, Citizenfour with an Oscar.  Could the tide be changing now?
It remains to be seen what happens.  I know some within the media are beginning to wakeup primarily because Obama running the most secret government in American history. 
It’s really long overdue for our population to rise up, surround the Whitehouse and purge this criminal junta from existence.
We are at a very dangerous crossroad in our history.   Will we fight once again for our liberty or will ours be the next government seen yet again imprisoning and murdering its own population?
As for Edward Snowden, he’s an incredibly brave American patriot and must be treated as one.  We must honor and protect this exceptional lad.

Saturday, February 21, 2015

Is the FAA on a Collision Course With America’s Drone Operators?

Los Angeles, CA—I just spent a long time on the telephone with an FAA Aviation Safety Inspector.  I’m not going to name him.  He was knowledgeable and helpful under the circumstances. 
My question involved the use of a somewhat small multi-rotor drone for photography and videography.   Specifically, I wanted an exemption certificate for the use of a drone to obtain aerial images of accident, crime scenes, aerial damage surveys of structures for insurance adjusting and electronic newsgathering (ENG).
Just last Sunday the FAA issued a draft copy of their intended drone regulations.  After a public comment period as much as three years will pass before a final regulation is published. 
The rub here is that the drone technology is changing at lighting speed and whatever they promulgate will already be outdated and stale by the time any rule is adopted.
The inspector I spoke with was an obviously bright fellow.   He among other things investigates allegations of unauthorized commercial use of or the careless or reckless operation of drones.
He also explained to me just how to apply for a drone exemption certificate for my commercial needs.  He then cited verbatim the existing FAA drone safety guidelines. 
The guidelines themselves are somewhat problematic.  They are incredibly vague and lack adequate descriptions of prohibited activity.  However the current FAA prohibition against commercial use of drones is utterly unambiguous.   
Because of incredibly ignorant news media stories the public seems to think these little camera drones are somehow illegal.  Every time people notice a drone up in the air they call 911.  Police have to respond and drone enforcement is not currently taught in police academies.  
The cops and prosecutors are confused along with those people that make the various local and state laws.
Lets start with the local lawmakers.  For the most part they are ignorant of the fact that the nation’s airspace is not theirs to regulate!  Federal law preempts them.
Okay, you may as why can’t some state like Arizona pass a law governing drones in our airspace?  It’s really quite simple.  If state and local lawmakers had that power there would be total chaos in the skies!
For example they would try and make laws that would allow them to arrest pilots for making too much noise near airports.   At one time the states that precluded alcohol sales or at least barring sales on Sundays actually tried to enforce their laws against the airlines.
How could pilots and navigators possibly keep up with the laws of every state, city or hamlet they fly over? 
Can you imagine cops serving search warrants on airlines to obtain the names of flight crews that may have violated those local regulations?  Imagine seeing your uniformed pilots and flight attendants in handcuffs at morning criminal court calls after spending the night in jail! 
The FAA is the sole authority for our airspace.  Local governments can only control where airports are built or their own governmental use of aircraft.
Our local police, media and lawmakers simply don’t know or understand aviation laws.  They have enough responsibility without trying to control or determine the flight altitude of some 12 year-old kid’s camera drone.
Okay let’s begin with the Federal guidelines overregulation of Unmanned Vehicle Vehicles (UAV) or what we call, drones. 
The FAA lumped together all UAVs under 55 pounds.  That includes model rockets, fixed wing planes, helicopters and of course the new and suddenly wildly popular multi-rotor camera drones.
Multi-rotor drones are radically different than the rest.  They're somewhat slow moving and are not too difficult to operate.  Considering there are well over a million of them in civilian hands one undeniable fact is apparent.  There has never been a multi-rotor drone accident that has taken a life, caused a serious injury or any significant property damage. 
When you compare that with the 7000 helicopters in use world wide use there is no similarity.  Over the years, I’ve sadly I’ve lost friends that were in epic helicopter crashes.  The last of which was the collision of two TV news-choppers over Phoenix, AZ three years ago that killed four friends. 
All FAA existing regulations for conventional manned aircraft were actually written in blood!  Every rule has a historical tragic accident behind it!   The FAA exists for airspace safety and for the most part they’ve done a pretty good job. 
Today the USA and our way of life have changed because of the political Left Wing’s control over the nation. The Left loves big government and they never met a commerce obstructing law they didn’t just love.
Those on the Left believe there must be some sort of license issued before you can clip your own toenails!
Suddenly with the emerging drone technology the FAA has gone to the prior restraint mode rather than regulating based on actual accidents.
I call this the Chicken Little mode where regulations are made to preclude even the most remote possibility of mishaps. 
Nothing is a better example overregulation than the FAA’s total ban on using a drone for compensation.  Wow, halting commerce?  How un-American is that? 
If there was a reasonable safety issue demonstrated by a death, serious injury or significant property damage involving the multi-rotor drones I could understand, but there’s not! 
I must cite our First Amendment right to create, gather news, publish and broadcast.   Here the prior restraint activities of the FAA are nothing short of tyrannical! 
The new proposed rules of the FAA over commercial UAS seem on their face seem somewhat workable.  Anything is better than a total prohibition.
I personally intend to be licensed once the new regulations are in place.  In the meantime I’m in the process of applying for an FAA drone use exemption certificate.
My unanswered questions still remain.  Just what is careless or reckless aircraft regulation? Some would consider simply flying any drone reckless.  Opinions here are both wide and varied even among drone users! 
How near is too near to be to an occupied sports stadium? Is flying over the heads of people the same as simply being able to view people from above?  People including my fellow drone pilots all have different ideas and answers. 
Have we somehow failed to notice that conventional aircraft fly over our homes and heads everyday?
The FAA inspector I spoke with could not answer those important questions.  He simply told me that if there’s a complaint he’d report the known facts or allegations to them and the FAA would make a final determination on whether anything deserved sanctions. 
To me this is FAA vs. Drone situation merely setting up a recipe for unnecessary conflict and endless litigation.
My goal is to see the stellar safety record of the multi-rotor devices continue through the responsible use of this exciting and cutting edge technology.
In the long run drones will save lives, such as the 100 or so antenna tower inspectors that fall to their deaths ever year.  
There will be fewer manned helicopters crashing because of the tiny by comparison drones are being used instead.
The world’s food and fuel supply will be better- managed and protected by inexpensive UAV operators. 
Drone delivery of emergency medicines, defibrillation devices will also be saving lives along with drone use in search and rescue missions.
Drones are here to stay and Americans need their benefit.

Thursday, February 19, 2015

Bruce Jenner’s Accident is No Crime!

Malibu, CA—Earlier this month former Olympic champion, Bruce Jenner was involved in a fatal accident on Pacific Coast Highway.  Jenner was driving a Cadillac Escalade towing a trailer. 
As most of my blog visitors know I’m a former cop and licensed private investigator for longer than I care to admit.  I have conducted many fatal automobile accident investigations and understand the process. 
A white Lexus was in front of Jenner’s vehicle being driven by a 68 year-old Arizona woman driving with an expired driver’s license.   She suddenly slowed down for no apparent reason.  Jenner apparently hit her and somehow pushed her Lexus into oncoming traffic.  
A Hummer then struck the Lexus head on killing the woman. 
Apparently there was no evidence of excessive speed or impaired driving involved.  Right now sheriff’s officers are trying their best to reconstruct the accident to determine fault.
Just because there is the tragedy of a fatality does not change this from an accident. Eventually Jenner could be determined to be at fault.  That’s purely a civil matter for the insurance companies to fight over. 
Yes, Jenner could receive a minor traffic citation for Following Too Close.  That accusation would have to be proven in a court trial and if so Jenner could face a fine.  Jenner could still avoid the fine, conviction and points on his driving record by simply attending traffic school.
Jenner did what I’d never recommend to anyone.  He fully cooperated with police and submitted to a totally unnecessary and embarrassing field sobriety test (Simon Sez). 
This is an accident pure and simple.  Accidents happen and the media at this stage suggesting potential Manslaughter charges is both libelous and vile.
Video recreations are not evidence unless and until engineers and qualified accident reconstruction experts are allowed to testify about them in court.  This investigation is nowhere near the stage of actually finding fault.
This has turned into a case of implied guilt by celebrity, not by facts or evidence.  Jenner has enough misery on his plate without the wild speculation and sensational innuendos. 
I think we need to wait until the police investigation is complete and see if Jenner actually needs to attend driving school.  This is not going to result in criminal charges!
Below is an animation that is NOT actual evidence, but simply suggests a theory of what may have happened. The video shows no criminal behavior.  It may support a minor traffic citation being issued to Jenner if it was somehow actually validated.  Just be aware this is not actual evidence!

Monday, February 16, 2015

“I’ve Got Nothing to Hide! Who cares if they’ve Got All My E-Mails, Phone Calls and Financial Transactions?"

Washington, DC—The documentary film is called, CITIZENFOUR and may be the most important documentary of our time.  It’s been nominated for an Academy Award. 
The German producers of this film were blessed with incredible access to American hero and NSA whistle blower Edward Snowden.  This was at the time when he was handing over data and documenting the massive criminal acts of our President and high intelligence officials to the Guardian Newspaper.
The only person ever indicted for a crime was of course Edward Snowden. 
Frankly the sheep do not understand that our democracy will never be the same because of our people’s stolen secrets.  Political extortion, financial manipulation is our future since the Genie is forever out of the bottle. 
But for the ignorance of masses, they’d rise up, storm the Whitehouse and immediately hang the occupants for treason. 
Buy a ticket and see this remarkable film.  Then ask yourself why the German government did not grant asylum to Edward Snowden?  Is it because of what Barack Obama may have learned by tapping German Chancellor Angela Merkel’s phone? 
Team of CITIZENFOUR –  nominated as Best Documentary Feature:
Dirk Wilutzky ( Producer)
Mathilde Bonnefoy ( Producer)
Laura Poitras ( Director)
Patricia Schlesinger ( Commissioning Editor Norddeutscher Rundfunk)
Barbara Biermann ( Commissioning Editor Norddeutscher Rundfunk)
Bettina Reitz ( Director TV Bayerischer Rundfunk)
Hubert von Spreti (Commissioning Editor Bayerischer Rundfunk)
Sonja Scheider ( Commissioning Editor Bayerischer Rundfunk)
Carl Bergengruen ( Managing Director MFG Baden-Württemberg)

People are Asking Me What I Actually Do For A Living. Here are Some Answers!

From an Undisclosed Location—Ok, that’s a fair question.  The answer is complicated.  I’ll do my best to answer that.
Yes, I’m a licensed private detective but I avoid work that’s meaningless, illegal, or immoral.  My primary specialty is criminal defense and I’m considered an expert in self-defense cases involving deadly force. 
I accept other cases including personal injury cases where liability must be established and fixed.
In 1989 I was recruited to work as a TV investigative news producer.  I did not shut down my agency but agreed simply do the work for TV news like all my other clients. 
On news cases I spend my time finding out what the cops and other authorities do NOT want the media to know about the most high profile murders and such.  I’ve actually reported stories but generally never have the time to do anything but locate and hand over the material and important witnesses for interviews to those familiar TV faces. 
I have been sent to all over the USA, India and Europe on cases.  I speak fluent German thanks to that draft/conscript invitation from President Lyndon B. Johnson.  Germany was a much better assignment than Viet Nam!   I served as a medical corpsman which in addition to personally observing nearly 800 autopsies at Chicago’s Cook County Morgue helps me in homicide cases.
I write this blog for fun.  However, I wish I were sponsored more to travel and report on more of the crime stories around the world.  I do manage to cover a high profile story from time to time.
I love to report on filmmakers and review art, music and of course films.  I’m naturally attracted to crime films and documentaries. 
As my blog visitors know I’m a serious gun Rights advocate.  I’m often called to speak about gun rights on radio, TV or live events.
My latest endeavor is the camera/drone technology.  I value drones for video journalism in a big way.  Unfortunately as much as I’d like to be a somewhat less creepy, Droneie version of that film character in Jake Gyllenhaal's latest movie "Nightcrawler",  so far the FAA, so far has obstructed that new passion. 
My news experience has also given me a specialty in Media Crisis Management.  That’s helping high profile people and businesses deal with a sudden onset of bad publicity connected to serious allegations.
For more fun I like writing, acting (I’m a member of SAG-AFTRA) and making short and documentary films.
This blog has brought me some very exciting cases when my visitors have reached out to me for help.  As you can expect I can’t nor won’t talk about most of my cases due to necessary client confidentiality.
I seem to wear at lot of hats but for me they’re all interesting and fun.  I hope this answers a lot of questions.

Sunday, February 15, 2015

Annual Reception to Honor German Nominees for the Oscar Awards is Almost Here!

Pacific Palisades, CA—At Pacific Coast Highway and Sunset Boulevard high on a hill with a stunning view overlooking the ocean is Villa Aurora.  This was once the playground of film icons such as Marlene Dietrich and Charlie Chaplin. 
Today Villa Aurora is an exciting artist’s residence, owned by the German government.  It’s contributions to art, music and film is immeasurable.  The same could be said here for the German government.  
The partnership between American and German filmmakers has brought thrilling film after film to both European and American audiences,
On Saturday February 21st German Films, Villa Aurora (Pacific Palisades, Los Angeles) and the Consulate General of The Federal Republic of Germany will host its Pre-Oscar event.  In honor of the German Oscar® nominees:
This year they will be honoring the following:
Director Wim Wenders -  nominated for THE SALT OF THE EARTH as Best Documentary Feature
Team of CITIZENFOUR  nominated as Best Documentary Feature:
Dirk Wilutzky ( Producer)
Mathilde Bonnefoy ( Producer)
Laura Poitras ( Director)
Patricia Schlesinger ( Commissioning Editor Norddeutscher Rundfunk)
Barbara Biermann ( Commissioning Editor Norddeutscher Rundfunk)
Bettina Reitz ( Director TV Bayerischer Rundfunk)
Hubert von Spreti (Commissioning Editor Bayerischer Rundfunk)
Sonja Scheider ( Commissioning Editor Bayerischer Rundfunk)
Carl Bergengruen ( Managing Director MFG Baden-Württemberg)
Team of THE GRAND BUDAPEST HOTEL -  nominated for nine Oscars®  i .a. Best Motion Picture of the Year:
Charlie Woebcken ( Executive Producer Studio Babelsberg)
Henning Molfenter ( Executive Producer Studio Babelsberg)
Christoph Fisser ( Executive Producer Studio Babelsberg)
Jeremy Dawson ( Producer )
Miki Emmrich (   Line Producer)
Carl Bergengruen ( Managing Director MFG Baden-Württemberg)
Kirsten Niehuus ( Managing Director  Medienboard Berlin-Brandenburg)
Generous Film Funding has made some great films possible over the years.  Renowned directors such as Paul Verhoeven, Quentin Taratino, Werner Herzog and so many other artists were able to thrill audiences because of this important support.
The German government understands that making films is important to a nations economy and quality of life.
I look forward to attending this gala and sharing with you interviews, video and some surprises from this exciting event. 
Here is my drone’s-eye view of the Villa on a somewhat dreary day last year.