Body of Haitian Hip-Hop Artist Jean Jimmy Alexandre, "Jimmy O," Found in Crushed Vehicle on Street in Port-au-Prince

Body of Haitian hip-hop star Jean Jimmy Alexandre, “Jimmy O,” found in crushed vehicle in Port-au-Prince.

Jean Jimmy Alexandre, a Haitian singer and songwriter, as well as an active participant in Wyclef Jean’s Yele Haiti charity, was found dead in his crushed vehicle Friday

Jimmy O, as he is popularly known, was reportedly crushed in a vehicle during the 7.0-magnitude earthquake, while he was driving in downtown Port-au-Prince.

According to CNN, which was on the scene when his body was discovered Friday, a man examined the body and pulled from one of the victim’s pants pocket the artist’s passport. CNN said they saw the document, which verified the man was Jimmy O, whose legal name was Jean Jimmy Alexandre.  He is survived by his wife and three children.

Actor Danny Glover Suggests Haiti Hit by Massive Earthquake because of Global Warming

Actor Danny Glover says earthquake in Haiti caused by “global warming.”

So, Pat Robertson led the way with a ridiculous and insensitive comment about the reason why Haiti was hit with such devastation. He said it was because of “a pact to the devil.” Right Pat, let’s not forget that Haiti’s liberation paved the way for the Louisiana Purchase. So now actor Danny Glover enters the fray, with a less sensitive but equally ridiculous suggestion that the earthquake was caused by climate change.

“What happened in Haiti could happen to anywhere in the Caribbean because all these island nations are in peril because of global warming,” Glover said. “When we see what we did at the climate summit in Copenhagen, this is the response, this is what happens, you know what I’m sayin’?”

Is this guy serious or what? What a character! These armchair quarterbacks need to leave the explanation for this earthquake and any others to scientists and seismologists.

Venezuela’s Sucre State Hit by 5.6 Magnitude Earthquake, No Physical Damage or Deaths Reported

A 5.6 magnitude earthquake hit Venezuela’s Sucre state Friday. No physical damage or deaths reported thus far.

A 5.6 magnitude earthquake shook Venezuela’s Sucre state Friday. According to the Wall Street Journal, initial reports suggest that physical damage has been minimal and, thus far, there are no victims.

According to the U.S. Geological Survey, the quake was centered about 375 kilometers east of the capital, Caracas, at a depth of 11.7 kilometers. The quake hit at 1:30 p.m. local time (1800 GMT).

The epicenter was located within a few hundred kilometers of key oil operations in the Orinoco belt, as well as upgrading and refining facilities in the city Puerto La Cruz. The petroleum infrastructure is located east and southeast of the area, in the neighboring states of Anzoategui and Monagas.

State-run oil company Petroleos de Venezuela controls a 187,000-barrel-a-day refinery in Puerto La Cruz, located in Anzoategui. A refinery maintenance official, who asked not to be named, said the earthquake was felt at the refinery, but noted it was “mild.” The official said no orders were given to evacuate, and the refinery continues to operate normally. Source: Wall Street Journal

It is safe to say that residents in the Caribbean and parts of South America are obviously unnerved by the earthquake in Haiti and now this.

Still developing. More to come.

Jeron Lewis, Southern Indiana Center, Dies After Collapsing on Court During Basketball Game

Jeron Lewis, Southern Indiana center, dies after collapsing on the court during basketball game at Kentucky Wesleyan.

Jeron Lewis, 21, Southern Indiana center, died late Thursday after he collapsed on the court during at basketball game at Kentucky Wesleyan. Lewis reportedly fell under the basket with about four minutes left in the game, Ray Simmons, athletic department spokesman said. He was taken to the hospital, but he died just shortly before 10 p.m.

“The play was under the basket. The ball was rebounded, we were on defense, and the next thing I knew – most everyone knew – all of a sudden the officials start blowing whistles, and Jeron was motionless with the trainer from Kentucky Wesleyan,” Simmons told The Associated Press. “They started giving him treatment, took him to the medical center. That is where he passed away.” Simmons said he had no details about what may have caused his death, and the school scheduled a press conference for Friday afternoon.

The 6-foot-8, 260-pound Lewis was in his second season with Division II Southern Indiana, averaging 12.8 points and 8.0 rebounds. The Eagles won Thursday night’s game, 74-69. Source: News One

The Hinterland Gazette reached out to the Kentucky Medical Examiner for comments, but we have not been successful in getting a response about the cause of his death. Our thoughts and prayers go out to the family of Jeron Lewis.

Photo credit: Jeron Lewis, NewsOne

Fox News Coverage of Earthquake in Haiti Scant, Big-Name Hosts Cover Other Stories

Why am I not surprised about the scant coverage of the earthquake in Haiti by Fox News, which prides itself on being “fair and balanced.” Thankfully, I am not the only person who noticed this disturbing trend. Here’s an excerpt from the Los Angeles Times:

LA Times: Fox drops the ball in Haiti coverage

Haiti’s misery and suffering have been hard to watch, but they have offered confirmation of the invaluable contributions made in times of crisis by mainstream news outlets like CNN.

Some of the Earth’s neediest people have been visited by an almost unbearable, added burden. And cable television’s pioneering outlet has risen to the occasion, making sure the world sees the painful realities.
CNN’s determination to stick with the news stands in stark contrast to its competitors, particularly Fox News, that in prime time have increasingly been committed to building their brands with political commentary over straight reporting.

When critics accuse Fox of being a tool of the conservative political movement, the company’s executives counter that they deliver serious news during much of the day. But its prime-time headliners expose the values of the entire operation, and this week they’ve given abysmally short shrift to the biggest crisis in the world.

Why dwell on one of our closest hemispheric neighbors in its hour of dire need, when — like both Sean Hannity and Glenn Beck — you can conduct prolonged, frothy promotional interviews with Fox’s newest contributor, Sarah Palin? Why focus on all that misery, if, like Hannity on Wednesday, you can engage conservative virago Michelle Malkin in a soaring conversation about the Obama administration’s “culture of corruption.”

Bill O’Reilly played his no-Haiti card too, managing a gripping discussion Wednesday with Bo Derek about the threat to the West’s wild horses. Not to mention those whales being hunted by the Japanese in the Southern Ocean.
Cable operator MSNBC couldn’t match CNN’s boots-on-the-rubble immediacy either. NBC anchor Brian Williams, morning host Ann Curry and others were holed up at the Port-au-Prince airport Wednesday evening because of security concerns, before getting into the city Thursday to cover the story more directly.

But at least the cable affiliate did its best to tell the story from outside the epicenter. It dedicated more than two hours to the quake in its three major prime-time shows, compared with less than seven minutes presented by Fox’s biggest stars Wednesday night, according to the liberal media watchdog, Media Matters.

It’s shameful that Faux News would be so nonchalant and seemingly uncaring in their so-called “fair and balanced” coverage of the devastation in Haiti. There one saving grace will be Geraldo Rivera, who I am pretty sure will be on the ground in Haiti when his show broadcasts Saturday and Sunday. Who is the elitist now?

Wyclef Jean on the Ground in Haiti Says: “This Is An Apocalypse 500,000 People Are About to Die (VIDEO)

Wyclef Jean appeals to President Obama to send in the Marines. Says a state of emergency in Haiti and 500,000 people are about to die.

Wyclef Jean is on the ground in Port-au-Prince, Haiti and he is seeing some rather shocking and disturbing things. He discussed what he’s been seeing with Fox News. He talks about picking up dead bodies in the street. He is calling on President Obama to send in the Marines because it is literally the “Apocalypse” and 500,000 people may lose their lives.

Scientists Warned in 2008 of Major Earthquake Hitting Haiti Due to Weakening of Enriquillo Fault

According to WSB-TV, Eric Calais, a professor of geophysics at Purdue University and other scientists had detected worrisome signs of growing stresses in the fault that dealt a devastating blow to Haiti on Tuesday with a massive 7.0 magnitude earthquake. They said they warned officials two years ago that the impoverished island-nation was vulnerable to a major earthquake. Those findings were reportedly presented during a geological conference in March 2008 and at meetings two months later. The findings showed that the fault was capable of causing a 7.2 magnitude earthquake, which was a little stronger than the quake that hit Port-au-Prince. Though they warned, two years was certainly not sufficient time, especially for a country that has been dogged by so many woes, to implement measures that would have prevented such devastation.

Eric Calais, a professor of geophysics at Purdue University, said Thursday. Their conclusions also lacked a specific timeframe that could have prodded quick action to shore up the hospitals, schools and other buildings that collapsed and crumbled, said Paul Mann, a senior research scientist at the University of Texas’ Institute for Geophysics.

In March 2008, Calais and Mann were among a group of scientists who presented findings on the major quake risk along the Enriquillo fault during the conference in the Dominican Republic, which shares the island of Hispaniola with Haiti. Their conclusions were based both on geologic work Mann conducted along the same fault and recent findings by Calais. Calais had detected rising stresses along the fault using global positioning system measurements that showed that the Earth’s crust in the area where the fault traverses southern Haiti was slowly deforming as pressure grew within the fault. That pressure, paired with Mann’s work and the fact that the last major quake in the area was in 1770, led to the prediction that the fault could produce a 7.2-magnitude temblor.

Calais said he also presented the findings to officials in Haiti during a series of meetings in May 2008 that included the country’s prime minister and other high-ranking officials. He said he stressed to the officials that if they did nothing else they should at least begin reinforcing hospitals, schools and key government buildings to weather a strong quake. “We were taken very seriously but unfortunately it didn’t translate into action,” he said. “The reality is that it was too short of a timeframe to really do something, particularly for a country like Haiti struggling with so many problems.”

Calais said Haiti has no seismic stations for monitoring quake activity, while adjoining Dominican Republic has a small seismic network. Although the specific risks of the fault zone near Haiti’s capital, Port-au-Prince, may not have been known until recent years, the region has a long history of major earthquakes, said Carol Prentice, a U.S. Geological Survey research geologist based in Menlo Park, Calif. Those include earthquakes that destroyed Jamaica’s capital, Kingston, in 1692 and 1907, that also occurred along the Enriquillo fault, which extends hundreds of miles through the Dominican Republic, Haiti and Jamaica. Source: WSB-TV

This is such a sad time for our world right now that we must help the countries in the Caribbean, particularly Haiti, Jamaica and the Dominican Republic reinforce their infrastructure to withstand any possible earthquakes in the future. I remember as a child in Jamaica we felt a tremor during school one day and students ran. It was a scary moment, but that was just a tremor. I cannot begin to explain how sad I am about what has happened to the people of Haiti.

West Virginia Republicans Want Welfare Recipients Tested for Drugs Before Awarding Benefits, Lawmaker Calls Measure "Racist"

Sally Susman, (D-WV) calls state Republicans proposal to test welfare recipients for drugs before awarding benefits “racist.”

There is a proposal making its way through the West Virginia state legislature that would require recipients of welfare benefits to submit to drug testing in order to receive said benefits. One lawmaker, Del. Sally Susman (D-Raleigh) said in an interview with the State Journal that such a measure was not only costly, it was downright racist. Republicans in the state House of Delegates are pushing for laws they claim would reduce fraud in the welfare system.

The reality is that West Virginia wouldn’t be the first state to implement such a measure. Arizona currently tests welfare recipients for drugs if state authorities have reason to suspect that an individual may be taking drugs. Michigan tried to implement such a law, but it was struck down by the U.S. 6th Circuit Court of Appeals, which ruled that drug testing for welfare benefits violated a person’s Fourth Amendment right on the grounds that it amounted to an unreasonable search.

Not only is this a costly piece of legislation, it will violate the rights of recipients. I am all for reducing fraud in the welfare system, but we all know that the testing will be weighted along racial lines. Wouldn’t it be better to use that money to help the recipients get off welfare, such as job training, job search assistance and so on>