Cheers and Jeers: Rum and 306 EVs FRIDAY!

first_imgLiberty Bell Independence Hall And now . . .— US Rep Brendan Boyle (@RepBrendanBoyle) November 12, 2020–“While it’ll be nice to see the Secret Service drag Trump out of office, the president is leaving behind a wave of white resentment and disinformation. Plus, out of spite, Trump is probably going to upperdeck all the toilets in the West Wing.”—Samantha Bee- Advertisement – Late Night Snark: We have A Winner EditionThe late-night hosts deserve kudos for stepping up their game as truthtellers and mockers of Trump and his evil band of incompetent control freaks. This week they were as relieved as the rest of us…“Ladies and gentlemen, Joe Biden did it! Finally, after four years, Americans can exhale—unless you’re near other people, then please don’t because of the pandemic. … [It’s] never a good sign when a majority of Americans react to you losing your job the way they did to us getting Bin Laden. It feels like America is—what’s the word?—great again.”—Stephen Colbert“I know it’s hard to believe, but after all this time it seems like reality has finally caught up with Donald Trump. … I bet as we speak he’s ripping out the copper wiring from the White House walls.”—Trevor Noah- Advertisement – Continued…“You can tell things are already getting back to normal. This morning on my way to work I saw two New Yorkers giving each other the finger and it had nothing to do with politics. Isn’t that great?”—Jimmy Fallon“Even Mother Nature got in on the fun. After the announcement there was actually a double rainbow over L.A. The Trump campaign is already trying to overturn at least one of those rainbows in court.”—James Corden“So NOW Trump wants to quarantine in the White House.”—Conan O’Brien These babies 👶😂— CCTV_IDIOTS (@cctv_idiots) November 13, 2020–END BRIEF SANITY BREAK–CHEERS to Mary Had A Little Lamb.  Back in the day, you could play that tune with the buttons on your touch-tone phone, which was invented on this date in 1963. It was almost as awesome as being able to spell out BOOBIES with your calculator by punching in 5318008 and turning it upside down.  Man, we were wild back then.  You kids have no idea.CHEERS to home vegetation. There’s one single leaf still hangin’ on for dear life in the backyard, and I refuse to start raking until it drops.  So until then, it’s weekend boob-tubage. Final round preview of this weekend’s Masters Tournament.As always, MSNBC is the place to go for details of any Friday night news dumps. There’s an interesting-looking episode of Undercover Boss tonight (9pm, CBS), in which Shreveport, Louisiana Mayor Adrian Perkins goes incognito and gets training from city officials in various departments.   The most popular home videos, new and old, are all reviewed here at Rotten Tomatoes. The NFL schedule is here. And if you thought you saw news about the Masters golf tournament this week, do not adjust your set—it’s going on now after being re-scheduled (coverage starts tomorrow at 1on CBS) from its usual April slot.Sunday on 60 Minutes, President Barack Obama gives his first post-election interview and, among other things, reacts to Trump’s bogus voter fraud claims.  Anchorman Kent Brockman questions his career on The Simpsons, and Peter’s arms are replaced with tiny hands on Family Guy. (If there’s not a Trump joke in it somewhere, I’m calling comedy malpractice.)  And, sadly, John Oliver takes off on a long vacation after airing the season finale of HBO’s Last Week Tonight Sunday at 11.Now here’s your Sunday morning lineup:Meet the Press: Joe Biden’s—‘scuse me—President-elect Joe Biden’s chief of staff Ron Klain; Michael Osterholm of Biden’s Covid-19 task force; Gov. Asa Hutchison (R-AR).Ron Klain says it plain Sunday morning on NBC.This Week: HHS’s Adm. Brett Giroir; President-elect Biden Covid-19 Advisory Board member Dr. Atul Gawande; John Bolton; U.S. Senate candidate from Georgia Jon Osoff; former Obama Homeland Security secretary Jeh Johnson.Face the Nation: Preempted by the Masters tournament.CNN’s State of the Union: U.S. Senate candidate from Georgia Rev. Raphael Warnock; Dr. Anthony Fauci; Gov. Mike DeWine (R-OH).Fox GOP Talking Points Sunday: Respected legal expert Lawrence Tribe; disgraced legal hack Ken Starr. Happy viewing!–Ten years ago in C&J: November 13, 2010CHEERS to the Traveler-in-Chief.  On day six of his Asian tour, President Obama is stumping in South Korea, seeing the sights and working on a trade deal.  He’s coming off of a mostly nostalgic and successful stop in Indonesia.  I say “mostly” because some conspiracy theorists there were skeptical, accusing him of being a secret Christian capitalist who was born in the United States.  Man, sometimes ya just can’t win.–And just one more…CHEERS to Gandalf the Grey of Blogger Land. Happy anniversary to one of the longest-running blogs on the internet: Josh Marshall’s Polk Award-winning Talking Points Memo, which turns 20 today.Happy #20 blogiversary, Josh & crew!You can re-live the birth of this progressive supernova in his early posts during the Florida 2000 recount, although it might cause your blood pressure to spike, especially given how Republicans are still trying to steal elections.  Josh provided the blueprint for how to do political blogging. His now-supersized crew and expanded site continue providing no-frills original reporting with just enough analysis and snark to help us make sense of politics, and nothing the righty blogs offer comes close to TPM’s objectivity, accuracy and speed. During election seasons TPM is a daily must-click destination, and it’s been great seeing the site buck the “blogging is just a fad” naysayers for 20 trips around the sun.  Of course, they’re no Great Orange Satan…but then again, no one’s perfect.Have a great weekend. Floor’s open…What are you cheering and jeering about today?– –Cheers and Jeers for Friday, November 13, 2020Note: Today is Friday the 13th.  If you suddenly get the sense this evening that your life is in danger, just press the cloaking device on the latest version of the Apple Watch, which will be available for download next Wednesday. —Mgt.–By the Numbers:4 days!!!Days ’til Volume 1 of Barack Obama’s memoir A Promised Land comes out: 4Percent, so far, of eligible voting-age Americans who cast a ballot in the 2020 elections, an increase of 0.4% over 2008: 62%Percent of Americans polled by Gallup who say they understand that the coronavirus pandemic is getting worse: 61%Minimum number of environmental protections the Trump administration worked to get rid of so the wall could be built, according to the Southern Environmental Law Center: 100Number of the 16 Medals of Freedom President Trump has awarded during his presidency that went to men: 15Amount that the one female recipient, along with her husband, donated to Trump’s 2016 and 2020 presidential campaigns with money they made off of gambling addicts: $100 millionAge of the hole-puncher as of today: 134–Puppy Pic of the Day: Coming soon to an executive mansion near you…–CHEERS to cool science. Back in April, Bob Behnken and Doug Hurley became the first astronauts since 2011 to launch their hineys into space from American soil. That flight was technically a test run. Six months later, the gravity-defiance professionals at NASA and SpaceX will send four more—Americans Shannon Walker, Victor Glover, and Mike Hopkins, along with Japan’s Soichi Noguchi—up yonder on an official NASA-certified regular trip to deliver freshly-baked cookies and good cheer to the International Space Station. Thankfully Hurricane Eta is long gone and the green light is lit, though a bit later than originally planned:A SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket and Crew Dragon capsule were slated to launch the astronauts to the International Space Station on Saturday (Nov. 14) from NASA’s Kennedy Space Center in Florida. That mission, called Crew 1, will no launch no earlier than Sunday at 7:27 p.m. EST due to unacceptable weather for rocket recovery operations, despite a 70% chance of good launch weather.The Crew-1 Dragon capsule comes with DVD player and cup holders standard. “For the next 15 months, we will fly seven crew and cargo Dragon missions for NASA. That means that, starting with Crew-1, there will be a continuous presence of SpaceX Dragons on orbit,” Benji Reed, senior director of human spaceflight at SpaceX, said in the post-FRR news conference. “We are honored to be the nation’s launch provider for crew missions and take seriously the responsibility that NASA has entrusted to us to carry American astronauts to and from the space station.”You can check out some of the experiments they’ll be conducting during their six-month stay here. If you need me Sunday evening you’ll find me in my usual pre-launch spot: under the covers in my customized Space Shuttle bed clutching my lucky John Glenn bobblehead and holding my breath.JEERS to the nattering nabobs of Nazism. Speaking of weekend events: tomorrow a gaggle of brainwashed cultists—aka “Oath Keepers, Three Percenters, Infowars fanatics, Groypers, Proud Boys, white nationalists, neo-Nazis and the people who would simply call themselves die-hard MAGA”—are planning to camo-up and take their wacky cosplay antics to Washington D.C. for a permit-less event called “The Million MAGA March,” aka “Stop the Steal,” aka “March for Trump.”Have fun, MAGA marchers. Don’t forget to hydrate.In their minds a million patriots will show up and change history by making Joe Biden quake in his boots so hard that he flees the country after agreeing to give Trump his second term.The reality will be slightly different: a thousand bedraggled goofballs will show up, mill around and be harmlessly obnoxious, and then go home. If you’re interested, you can watch live coverage on the Watching Paint Dry Channel.JEERS to stupid damn wars. On this date in 1982, the Vietnam Veterans Memorial—a vee shape which points at the State Department—was dedicated.  Our suggestion for the shape of the future Iraq War Memorial: a “W” on a spindle that points accusingly in the direction of wherever George W. Bush is at any given moment.–BRIEF SANITY BREAKDedicated tonight to 306-232 loser Donald Trump – “Defense Secretary Mark Esper was fired yesterday by President Trump, which is 75-million fewer people than Trump was fired by.”—Seth Meyers“Trump’s run for president began on a golden escalator and ended in an alley next to a dildo store. … Please don’t hang [Trump’s] portrait in the White House. Just smash a mango on the wall instead and put his name under it.”—Jimmy KimmelAnd now, our feature presentation…- Advertisement – – Advertisement –last_img read more

Dome security adapts in world with growing terrorism concerns

first_img Published on September 11, 2017 at 2:05 am Contact Matthew: [email protected] | @MatthewGut21 Facebook Twitter Google+ Nothing scares John Sardino more than the in-between, when he’s waiting to hear whether a threat or report is credible. About once every other year, one will pop up on the Department of Public Safety associate chief’s radar. Whether it’s a threat on social media or an individual with suspicious behavior roaming the Carrier Dome concourse, the most stressful part of Sardino’s job is the three to four hours it takes for his units to solve such issues.But aside from a concession stand fire about 10 years ago, a few small fights and a 2012 stabbing, there have been no terrorism incidents at the Carrier Dome, which opened 37 years ago. DPS leads an arsenal that includes Carrier Dome security staff, the Syracuse Police Department and the Syracuse Fire Department, creating a multi-layered protection scheme from the parking lots to the entrances to the front-row seats.The team deploys an array of technology to ensure the safety of thousands of patrons. Before every game, detection dogs make a full sweep of the premises, including alleyways, corners and loading docks. The fire department conducts an assessment of its own. About 100 DPS and SPD officers work inside the Carrier Dome and its surrounding areas on football game days. Nearly 80 cameras monitor every move of every square inch at the Dome, save for bathrooms and other areas with an expectation of privacy.“Everybody’s susceptible,” said Sardino, who has worked for DPS since 1985. “Fortunately, we are really ahead of the game. We don’t cut corners when it comes to security.”Sixteen years after the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks, the apprehension associated with terrorism threats has not faded. Three people were killed and more than 260 were injured at the Boston Marathon in 2013, when two bombs detonated near the finish line. At a November 2015 Germany-Netherlands soccer match, a bomb threat led to the evacuation of the stadium. Attacks in Paris that same month killed over 130 people and injured nearly 370 others. Three of the suicide bombings occurred near a sports stadium, where a security guard prevented a larger tragedy by discovering a bomber’s suicide vest when the attacker tried to enter the stadium.AdvertisementThis is placeholder textAn Arizona man accused of helping plan an attack on a Prophet Muhammad cartoon in Texas also inquired about explosives to attack the 2015 Super Bowl, according to court documents. And, in May 2017, an explosion killed 22 people at an Ariana Grande concert in England.While there has not been a major terror attack at a large stadium in the U.S., law enforcement at the Carrier Dome and similar venues across the country face an ever-growing test: incorporating beefed-up security measures by employing more personnel and technology while maintaining a relaxed atmosphere that keeps fans wanting to come back.So as the risk of terrorist attacks at public events increases, and as the body count rises, there remains the question: How long can the typical sporting experience remain the same?Andy Mendes | Digital Design EditorOn a platform in front of Gate A, DPS officer Dan LeBron is standing a few feet outside of the Carrier Dome’s revolving doors.From his perch, LeBron gazes at the passersby. Every few moments, he pans to the left and right, singularly focused on the search for suspicious behavior. The triggers are endless, he said: nervousness, sweaty cheeks, hands glued to pockets, baggy clothing and sagging pants. He said 90 percent of what he looks for is nonverbal. He has confiscated four knives and guns in his 19 years at the Dome.LeBron, 46, has wanted to work in law enforcement since he was 5 or 6 years old. He has worked for DPS since 1998, helping secure Carrier Dome football and basketball games, concerts, monster truck events and NCAA Tournament games. He’s also DPS’ training coordinator, helping integrate new officers and refresh even the most experienced ones twice per year on Article 35 New York state Penal Law, which encompasses the use of firepower.For Saturday’s game against Middle Tennessee State, LeBron arrived at DPS offices around noon, slipped into his uniform and checked into the Dome at 1:30 p.m., two hours prior to kickoff, when gates open. LeBron and his colleagues have arrested hundreds of people at the Dome, mostly for disorderly conduct. He also assists with health-related issues.“I need a DPS officer at the first aid room,” his walkie-talkie buzzed shortly after kickoff.On game days, LeBron gets plenty of rest. He sleeps eight hours and meditates daily to mitigate the stress of his job. He drinks over five gallons of water per day, he said, to increase concentration.New technology has provided him the time to redirect his sights. Given that he wears a body camera and is surrounded by dozens of cameras at the Dome, LeBron focuses less on, say, pockets, and more on the overall behavior of patrons.“There’s a lot of unknowns in life,” he said. “A guy could kill his whole family and show up to the game, with no indication. Most of the time, the fear of crime is worse than the crime itself.”As a cost-cutting measure, many law enforcement agencies have cut back on the number of security personnel like LeBron. DPS has not. SU hires some off-duty officers to work inside the Dome during events. Many SPD officers are hired to handle traffic control for streets and highways leading to the Dome. They are the least technologically advanced aspect of security, but experts said that well-trained personnel are the most important line of defense.“This life is stressful,” LeBron said. “When we get excited, that causes hysteria. It’s about being cool under pressure.”Todd Michalek | Contributing PhotographerMany experts agree on one thing: 9/11 marked the major change for event security. There had been some cameras in the Dome since the early 1990s, Sardino said, but the enclosed circuit system grew rapidly in the 2000s.“The awareness level, the sophistication of it and the attention to detail completely changed,” Sardino said.After 9/11, Sardino said that the Dome staff began using metal-detecting wands. Security guards toyed with random checks, but they learned patrons want consistency. About seven years ago, they standardized the procedures for all events, checking all bags and “wanding” everyone. That includes SU men’s lacrosse coach John Desko and SU men’s basketball assistant coach Adrian Autry, both of whom were given no special treatment outside Gate A on Saturday afternoon.At the Carrier Dome, all deliveries must be inspected. The location of fuel and water, as well as the keys and codes to opening entrances and exits, is all secured.The layered method begins with SU Parking Services. As patrons approach the Dome, DPS officers stay attentive to minimize the chance of suspicious activities near the outside of the Dome. Security personnel are stationed outside nearly every bleacher section and entrance way.A coordinating center is set up outside of the Dome, where authorities monitor hundreds of camera feeds from around SU’s campus. The location for the command center changes frequently.9/11 may have brought security to the forefront, but recent events have renewed the importance of updating security. Last summer, Duke added walk-through metal detectors, a no-bag policy and a no re-entry policy for both football and basketball games. Fans can no longer bring large purses, tote bags, backpacks, computers, camera bags or cooler bags. The list of approved items is minimal.The FargoDome in Fargo, North Dakota, another indoor venue like the Carrier Dome, may install walk-through metal detectors soon, said the venue’s general manager, Rob Sobolik. He said every technological upgrade can be effective, but noted that they can “make people complacent and miss things.” As he walks around the concourse, Sobolik looks for anything that can go wrong. He sometimes gets comments from patrons who are cranky or concerned with the security measures, he said.There are between six and eight fire prevention personnel at the Carrier Dome during games, Syracuse Fire Department deputy chief Paul Cousins said. In the case of a mass evacuation, all of the Dome doors can open, he said. More air would be pumped into the facility to keep the roof up. Cousins’ team leaves little to chance, well aware that one blip could be costly.“Our priority is to make sure there is access out of the building,” Cousins said. “Our role in terrorist events would be reactionary. If something happens, we’re prepared to manage that.”Andy Mendes | Digital Design EditorBecause it is an enclosed, climate-controlled environment, the Carrier Dome would be more susceptible to a gas attack than open-air facilities, according to security experts. To support the 220-ton inflated roof, air is directed upward through the Dome’s 36 main columns, each of which stands 60 feet high. One of Sardino’s chief concerns is the infiltration of the air system.A chemical attack could involve the heating system. There are only a handful of people who know the specifics of that system, Sardino said, making it difficult to find and navigate. Nonetheless, the possibility of a chemical threat is very much real at arenas and stadiums, said Gil Fried, a professor at the University of New Haven who studies security best practices.Fried recommends having one trained crowd management official for every 250 people. He said profiling behavior, not people, could be an effective approach to hunting down possible threats. Fried said targets such as the Carrier Dome are safe, but that nothing is 100 percent secure.“There is going to be a terrorist attack at a sporting event in the United States,” he said. “It’s guaranteed to happen.”James DeMeo, an event security consultant from Raleigh, North Carolina, recommends frequent risk assessment analysis by third-party firms. He said he believes every stadium should have a social media manager monitor what’s posted on the web at the venue.Other experts echoed those concerns, saying cybersecurity is a major growth industry that will continue to come under the microscopes of security managers. Because of recent events, security is gaining greater recognition. But most of that attention isn’t directed toward cyberspace, experts said, which could create additional concern.Rebecca Slayton, an associate professor in Cornell’s science and technology department, said she does not see cyberterrorism as an issue, particularly at sporting events. Terrorists could do little beyond displaying a threat on the scoreboard, she said. However, she noted that an easier way to inflict harm would be taking over the lighting system, lock all of the doors or create a fake computer or Wi-Fi network.She also said the possibility of an insider threat is very much alive. A disgruntled employee could poison the food or assist an attacker in bringing in weapons.“Whenever you have tens of thousands of people, it is inherently an unsafe situation,” said Eric Oddo, a senior policy analyst at University of Maryland Center for Health and Homeland Security. “We’re moving away from traditional attacks and more toward   cyberattacks, which can cause exponentially worse damage.”Security managers are constantly toying between where to put their attention. At the Carrier Dome, one of Sardino’s chief concerns is how to decipher real cyberthreats from ones that are not.***Whenever a terrorism attack or shooting happens someplace in the world, Mike Fedorchuk gets a little start in his stomach. Every time, he thinks about the Carrier Dome — how safe he feels, the possible threats and the likelihood of something happening there.Sitting outside of Huntington Beard Crouse Hall last week with his wife Jean, Fedorchuk said he has not noticed a heightened seriousness in security measures over the past two-and-a-half decades. As a football season ticket holder of 25 years, he has not encountered anything more than a patron who had “too many beers.” He said he feels safe at the Dome.“You can notice a difference in intensity,” said Fedorchuk, who lives in Auburn. “But there’s still an attitude that something will happen elsewhere, not here.”Fedorchuk is among the more than 27 million people to have passed through the Carrier Dome turnstiles since 1980. Several fans interviewed outside of the stadium last week said they generally feel safe. Some said they would be open to greater security measures. Others disagreed.Frank Hunt, who graduated from SU in 1976, said he would have problem with walk-through metal detectors. DPS said it does not plan on implementing them in the near future, though Sardino did not rule out the possibility.Before the season opener this year, John Slater of Cicero said he does not like big crowds. He has witnessed three fights at Buffalo Bills games but nothing noteworthy at the Carrier Dome.“You see the yellow jackets, you know they’re right there,” Slater said. “Ushers are looking up and around all of the time. I’m a little concerned, but I don’t mind it.”Last month, two Syracuse football season ticket holders for 30-plus years said they have never felt unsafe at the Dome. They both noticed an increase in lighting and security personnel post-9/11.Nevertheless, the list of threats continues to grow, creating whack-a-mole situations for security departments at venues across the country.“Security’s always in a cat and mouse game,” Fried said. “How can we find new ways to protect ourselves?” Commentslast_img read more