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tv   [untitled]    May 23, 2012 7:00pm-7:30pm EDT

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tonight on r t the supreme court is sending a stiff message to people who download or illegally share music pay for the music or pay the price of prosecution we'll tell you how one boston university student who has a six hundred fifty seven thousand dollars verdict hanging over his head is fighting back. taking the line of duty to the front lines of the occupy movement tired philadelphia police captain raven lewis has become a ray of light to many of the protesters bringing much needed in the gym and see to the movement even if it means making sacrifices of his own well i ask him why this cause is so important to him. and all humans are prone to error even the us justice system what happens when it costs a person years in prison or even their life u.s.
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states are now offering compensation for wrongful conviction but r.t.i. asks how much money is a person's life worth. it's wednesday may twenty third to seven pm in washington d.c. i'm having martin you're watching r t you'd be hard pressed to find someone who is not guilty of it downloading songs off the internet illegally in the music industry comes down on a person guilty they come down hard boston university student joel tenenbaum downloaded thirty songs off the internet and showed them on peer to peer networks he was sued by the recording industry association of america and in two thousand and nine a jury ordered him to pay two twenty two thousand five hundred dollars for each song he downloaded six hundred seventy five thousand dollars in total even though the penalty was called unconstitutionally excessive by a federal judge it was upheld by the u.s. circuit of appeals at the big. queston
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a monolithic record label industries represented by the r i and there i spoke the man in the center of this classic david versus goliath struggle himself i asked him why he thought he was targeted take a listen to his response well it was me in addition to a tens of thousands of other people out of the millions that were doing it and so it was basically just a bad chance. why do you think that you were i mean how does it feel to be a scapegoat for the record industry. it doesn't feel good. i mean they're spending tens of millions of dollars to rain down on my life make it as difficult as possible i'm not happy about that but the fight goes on and the case continues it's nice to have the support that i have from friends and family. and joel why do you think that they target individuals when everyone does this. you know is it just to cause a chilling effect to send a message is the citee saying this could happen to you well you know that's
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basically the idea there are there are some interesting news articles out there is . an analyst in the field who says that basically this is a remnant of an earlier age when they just didn't know what to do and they got desperate and started suing now they don't have any fresh lawsuits actually out of this but this remnant still continues because they want to be rhetorical power of that urban legend that to make an example out of somebody sure that they can frighten people out of doing that the idea is instead of some kind of regular enforcement of parking what you do is you just pick someone at random and give them you know the death penalty for a parking ticket and made known a lever think about doing that again and it is a clear example of the punishment definitely not fitting the crime and joel talk a little bit about your case what is happening right now. so the reason this is in the news right now is that the supreme court had denied our. petition for certain
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requests to hear the case and it's continuing at the that the federal level locally which is in the first circuit court the first circuit court of appeals overruled judge burton is reduction of the damages amount and demanded there remanded that the first circuit district court now go through the mitchell process which ironically was probably what judge burton was trying to avoid in the first place because when you branch or medicare which is this common law kind of reduction of things you have to offer the option of a new trial jimmy thomas rossett the case out in minnesota which is very similar to mine has now been through three trials and that's exactly what happened the ridiculous offered the r i turned it down and now she has a new trial a neutral new trial it's groundhog day for her why do you think i mean why do you think that the. court overturned this federal judge's ruling i mean it was clearly unconstitutional excessive i said so themselves what do you think the show is about
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the lobbying and history of the. well i don't know exactly and i know i'm not one to it to cast aspersions at the judicial system and i'm i imagine the reasoning is is rather complicated it does make me lose a certain amount of faith in the legal system that we're continuing to get these kind of nonsense answers but in fairness the r.i.a.'s has a has much more resources. at their at their disposal they have a much more expensive and much more talent well not talented legal team but many many more people. and they do have really the best copyright lawyers in the world they've spent tens of millions of dollars. prosecuting the on this so it's a matter of just finding little pieces in the law and arguing them affectively org which enabled us basically to not released to to mount a defense they were able to strip away all of our expert witnesses and basically
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all of our testimony when it came time for us to finally present because they're just much better at this than we are you know when you first got targeted were you sent a letter and you have the option to settle or did you just to the meeting to fight back against all the charges. well they sent a letter in i think it was two thousand and four it was a very kind of big notice it just says we think you're violating our copyrights it was newman clear who is from they said pay us money. but we didn't know that it wasn't a scam we didn't know what it was and there was certainly no evidence presented so we didn't know what exactly to make of this i did call them up i did offer them a money order i sent them a money order which they turned down and i applied to them i said i can't pay this and they say ok we'll try our financial hardship program and that turned out to be nonsense and we stopped hearing from them and then one day in ability was august two thousand and seven there was a really large stack of papers that appeared at my apartment doorstep and that was
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the formal complaint itself joe why do you think that the these record industry companies do not go after the actual facilitators of this piracy networks and these peer to peer training networks i mean these people who run these and yet they target people who are the users why do you think that they don't go after the big wigs here. just one more thing i want to finish our coverage of the previous point was that the initial complaint was the amount of fifty to fifty in the pretrial stages i did offer that much money to them by which time they said no you need to pay is twelve thousand plus so i did offer one of their talking points they have a whole publicity campaign they have a paid spokesperson whose job it is to basically take shots at me and that's one of their lines but i did offer to pay. it just wasn't enough for them now is your comment about why don't they go after the main distributors well they did initially there was napster was shut down. been shut down lines where there are
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a lot of you know very notable cases like this but i think the issue is that every time that one got shut down the. another want to see more one pop up but sort of the middle of the internet is that information kind of wants to be free and so you have a very hard problem very hard time trying to prevent you from doing so so this hasn't really stopped any kind of file sharing at all it's just driven it further underground bow everyone i know just torrents instead of using these big file sharing programs that are more traceable wasn't said before and i want to wrap of the segment i mean this is like a final and it's a desperate attempt i mean on the line of the record industry and i mean people are not going to stop pirating music and it's not going to happen like you said other file sharing networks are going to pop up with one get shut down where do you see this all going. and you know the pi the anti-piracy movement really think there's a chance or do you think they don't just keep scapegoating people and and their desperation well they claim to have seen the light they claim to have not filed
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anymore suits and they're just carrying this thing out because i think it would open up so much backlash if it was discovered that this sort of thing against me was nonsense and i think they've just they've already pushed they've already gone so far with that they try to have to all that they feel like they have to fall through just to feel. a bit less ridiculous in their example but as to where this is going i don't know exactly i mean i don't like to have this sort of pressure against me. but i mean the music business will always continue to exist the lyricist of grateful dead john perry barlow testified at my trial to say that the music business will never cease to exist in some form because it does what we as humans fundamentally need to do which is express ourselves and share art that that will always happen and that it's to millionaire to got scarcity that creates value and definitely calls into question on the fight between artists and the
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industry as well thanks for joining us physicist charlton bomb. the occupy wall street movement started as a protest against corporate power but as it evolved across the nation clashes between the protesters and the police started to highlight a different issue altogether the schism between cops and the communities they serve to protect however amidst the struggle one man has stood out to bridge the gap between us and them. retired philadelphia police captain ray lewis decided to make a bold statement to wear his police uniform all protesting at the occupy wall street movement at zuccotti park along with two hundred fifty other protesters he was arrested on nov seventeenth day of action lewis became a national icon shattering the image of the police as the enemy but at the same time he encountered serious backlash even though he served twenty four loyal years in the force he was expelled and stripped of his union benefits. now you do a lot to be booted from the fraternal order of police but apparently expressing
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your first and then rights one uniform across that line while captain lewis may have lost is that if it's many say you gave a much needed credibility to a movement painted by the corporate media about as a bunch of so-called hippies and through it all he's still protesting in uniform to this day to talk further about what he experienced and more or less joined us earlier today i first asked him if he was prepared for the firestorm he received for protesting on uniform take a listen. abbi thanks for having me first of all and yes i was prepared for that and i realized it was going to happen and i want to head with it anyway but let me make one correction i think you said i was expelled from my union and that they are that has not been decided yet but that decision will be made surely whether to expel me or not all right well thank you for that clarification i wanted to just mention you know you asked multiple rhetorical questions in your hold legal proceedings one is one is which you know why do you think they went through such
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great lengths to stifle your first amendment when they knew that there was no legal precedent to do so. abbie that's the most important question about my whole participation in this movement why did they go to such great lengths and it is my belief that they were pressured by corporate america because the one sign i carry want to daily basis is to ask people to watch the documentary inside job inside scathing indicting film of corporate bank specifically in the two thousand and eight financial collapse and anybody who watches that documentary will fully understand the corruption of our buying in this country re what corporate interests do you think facilitated this backfire against you for just practicing your first amendment. well in philadelphia the fraternal order of police a lot of cops want to be the president of the union and they have elections and
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these elections are run just like any other political election they're based on money a lot of advertising goes into these elections and those cops don't pay for that advertising out of their back pockets this advertising is paid for by corporations banks financial institutions. when you're elected you are beholden to those financial institutions and when i come out condemning these financial institutions if the president of the fop wants to get continuing contributions he better pay heed to the banks. were you surprised i know that you said you were expecting to encounter this on a small scale but i mean were you surprised that the very thing you were protesting about happened to you on a micro level where you saw this complete on accountability and you know any in your own force i mean the thing that you were out there protesting about happened to you in your own community yes i was taken aback
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a little by that especially when i got the envelope with a letter from the fraternal order of police while opening it i naively was thinking they're going to say brother lewis we support you one hundred percent is there anything we can do instead they threaten me with having a hearing perhaps to expel me so yes i was surprised that they took that extent without even giving me the courtesy of a phone call and finding out exactly what i was doing what i was about and ray you talk about there's actually another gentleman in philadelphia who does impersonate a police officer i mean they kept threatening intimidating you with saying that you were in person in a police officer when you weren't i mean you served on the force you're the captain for twenty four years and they knew that there was no they go president to do so but at the same time there actually is someone who doesn't person at a police officer and garners a weapon at that. why do you think that they haven't come down on this person for the same charge. because if you read the information about that person that person
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has contributed quite a bit of money and police motorcycles to the police department and that's how he got away with dressing in full police uniform riding a police motorcycle and illegally carrying a glock that he did not have a permit for and when the police commissioner of margate new jersey where this event took place was asked well why didn't you arrest him for carrying this illegal weapon the police commissioner's response was because i did not want to embarrass him wow and yet they have no problem parenting trying to embarrass and timid and threaten you for simply practicing your first and then and i wanted you to talk more about the chilling effect that this does i mean do you think that this is just a message being sent out to all police really and just saying look this is what can happen even if you choose to go out and and protest against corporate interests or whoever is really appalling the strings and public. oh absolutely it's
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a chilling message and it's done on purpose this is not by accident they want to make sure no other officers join me in promoting this occupy movement the other thing is they when they come out saying what i'm doing is illegal or improper and give me an order to cease and desist wearing my uniform and they will or they will take any and all necessary action to stop me what so egregious about this is sends the message to officers that they can violate people's first amendment rights because after i got that letter from the philadelphia police commissioner ordering me to stop i went down and i protested in uniform outside of the city hall of philadelphia a reporter seeing me protesting in uniform having the threatening letter the police commissioner wrote me approach the police commissioner and through his spokesman he said after i called his bluff he said we have decided to take a hands off approach to the lewis controversy but this was after he had ordered me
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to stop and after he threatened me. months to finally admit that there was really nothing you can do and i wanted to touch really quickly upon how other police officers even serving jail sentences have still received their pensions and just it's just incredible what has happened to you as a result of this raid where do you see this going the whole occupy wall street movement and you've really served as a symbol to bring you know the mainstream media trying to marginalize this movement and you've really served as a symbol to say hey this is this is everyone and the police are ninety nine percent to we're all part of this fight against corporate greed if you could just talk a little bit about where you see the movement going and how you really served as the transitional role for that. i don't really look as to where the movement is going i have no expectations i don't want to spend my time doing that because it's
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not going to do any good wondering where you're going to go i rather spend my time and my positive energy or in determining what pay if i can take what can i do to further the goals of the movement well thank you for your sacrifice obviously you knew that you would have to make one and you're definitely fighting an uphill battle and it is really important that you're out there and thank you for standing strong on that and we'll be following the case. that obvious like you're having me about was retired philadelphia police captain ray lewis. would you rather chant setting a guilty man free than sponsor putting an innocent one to death so far over one hundred thirty seven people on death row have been exonerated through d.n.a. evidence that prove their wrongful convictions when chapman as one of those people in two thousand and eight glenn was finally released from prison after spending fifteen years on death row for two murders he did not commit but the hardship didn't end there even though the state in which glen was in prison is one of twenty seven that offers some compensation for those wrongfully accused legal loopholes
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have prevented him from seeing a dime in fact forty percent of those exonerated from death row by d.n.a. evidence have received zero compensation for their wrongful convictions how can those wrongfully imprisoned ever start a new life without any financial aid and with this many mishaps and wrongful wrongful convictions in the first place should the u.s. consider a limit in the death penalty once and for all for more on this i'm joined by joined by independent journalist rania kalak running you know if the u.s. is unique in the sense that it is one of the only industrialized nations in the world that still enforces the death penalty for crimes why do you think this is. that the death penalty extremely popular among the american public and i think a lot of that has to do with the fact that the american public really doesn't understand. the ease with which and it's and people can be convicted of crimes they
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didn't commit not to say that everybody who gets sentenced to death is an instant but it's happened in the past and just looking at like you said. great number of people who have been exonerated from death row those are people who maintain their innocence and the only reason they were exonerated because somebody heard about their keys or an organization like the innocence project was able to help them you know when an appeal so who knows how many innocent people are out there and you know so many innocent people we've executed i mean how do you think this even happens do you think that there's a deep rooted issue at hand how does someone get put on death row without d.n.a. evidence against them. well there's actually a recent study that came out i think on monday that said that that it's actually this new national registry of exonerations of basically these two people out of schools i believe one of the university of michigan the other was northwestern. came together and teamed up. to come up with a database of people who've been exonerated in ninety nine and they found that
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there had been over two thousand exonerations and these are all from death row obviously but these majority overwhelming majority of these cases for rape and murder cases and what they found in those cases specifically was that people who were wrongfully convicted there were there were specific causes too that they found that was consistent all of these cases which was also i witness identification which is really really common i wouldn't and there's been tons of studies about how i wouldn't i don't think asian is not. you know is not something that's not reliable. but on top of that you know eye witness identification in terms of i think the study found that in terms of rate right rate was one where i would i don't think he should misidentification with the top reason why people were wrongfully convicted and over half of those people who were wrongfully convicted were african-american men and they were the majority of the time the ironically convicted by white females it is it is very interesting when you bring up the
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statistics of just identifying someone wrong and then it's amazing that someone could actually be put on death row or you said and these aren't all cases of death row but put in prison for just simply a misidentification i want to talk really quickly you said that americans are very concerned they love the death penalty i mean americans are also seem to be very concerned with their pocketbooks and the death penalty is substantially more expensive to taxpayers i mean in california alone it costs ninety thousand dollars annually more to have someone on death row but a normal incarceration i mean do you think that people are just are aware of this. you know people it depends yes people do like to think with their pocketbooks at the same time in america we have i believe this sort of puritan style justice where it's like in iraq you know the sort of eye for an ideal is mentality where if you kill people then you should be killed so it's also something that a lot of americans morally agree with right when you feel like
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a criminal has committed awful heinous acts who cares if they die however you know it's also the fact that you as americans are aware of the fact that the money it does cost a lot of money that you've got broken even in the face of a person being presented with facts about the money aspect to it a lot of people are still very pro death penalty so even accuses of people innocent people who have been killed. by cameron todd willingham willing to texas. even in these cases where activists hope that this would sway people who are productively to think twice about it how so i mean it's really difficult to figure out how or how we get people to come against the death penalty it is it is interesting in a predominately christian nation you know the whole are for and i think but then on the other hand you have the whole like turn your other cheek if someone hurts you i mean it seems like there's these two contradictory narratives going on i mean i want to play really quickly. audio from
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a supreme court justice who says that he does not agree with that politically rolled up. it will be the. day. it is. will. be. the only. the the. for. the to. be very. you know it's interesting to hear someone talking about the inconsistence these and how it really doesn't prevent crime and it just costs you know it doesn't really make sense when you put it on a cost benefit analysis i want to talk really quickly also about the appeals process which some sometimes can take decades i mean and the conditions of the
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death penalty can sometimes be tantamount to solitary confinement i mean which we already know is torture what do you think about that do you think that people also aren't aware of that or do you think that that that's kind of like the punishment fits the crime kind of thing. you know when a lot of people are presented with with that kind of stuff i mean once people have made up their minds about somebody being guilty it's really really hard even when presented with facts to change their minds that this person is now and has sent. a lot of people do agree that people who are wrongfully convicted deserve to be compensated. at the same time. you know it's something that again costs more money having more wrongful convictions and therefore exoneration will cost the states more money and i mean in the long run it's it's great that you know a former supreme court justice after the fact that ok after you know all this is and the death penalty is not a great idea but what we need is we need more we need more of these people these
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prosecutors these to you know these people are on the boards these judges to start coming against this stuff while they can still do something about it as well as politicians it is interesting also in your article that you know it says i have almost half of the states offer some sort of compensation but because of these legal loopholes you can't even really get it i mean you know we have these prisoners who are in prison wrongfully convicted they come out basically to start their lives over again and what can they really do and how can they fight back they're pretty much voiceless. yeah that's one of the biggest problems is there isn't and you are for these days that don't offer compensation even the ones that do they have these crazy conditions like in texas you have to actually prove your innocence before you can be compensated but you know overall it's the fact that there is no constituency for this group of individuals who haven't had the right to vote i mean there's not a group of lobbying you know in congress to help these majority poorer people of
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color who are the ones who are often wrongfully convicted. be compensated for their times that behind bars so it's really up to the public to come out in support of these people i mean when you get out of prison what i found from glenn chapman you nothing these people have nothing in their pockets nothing to their name they generally have families they've missed their children growing up they are suffering from an emotional scars from being in prison particularly on death row they have to readjust society after decades of present technology is so different you know i mean just readjusting to getting a cell phone can be a hate a very long and arduous task you know so we do need out more than just money but you know offer these people services when they get out of jail we need to help them get job placement you need to offer them so that it's at their education and you know we need to help them get housing we can't just like with gunshot and drop them on the street and say good luck so does seem like the system choose them up and spits them out and they are very politically disenfranchised and thank you very
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much and it's also interesting what you wrote about how a lot of them half of them still are jobless and a lot of them and back in prison in the system. i was an opponent journalist ron kolek thanks for joining us. now to give a brief update on pfizer an issue that r t has been covering extensively a key senate panel voted yesterday to extend a two thousand and eight provision involving a foreign intelligence service surveillance law that is set to expire at the end of the year the new vote would extend that provision until mid two thousand and seventeen that is of course the foreign intelligence surveillance act and the obama administration is trying to remove the expanded authority of the act to monitor e-mails and cell phone calls of overseas targets and an effort to prevent international terrorist attacks on the u.s. this vote is the first step and getting that act renewed as quickly as they ministration can next step a vote in congress although it's not clear when that will take place meanwhile the american civil liberties union has filed
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a lawsuit challenging the two thousand and eight law urging public hearings and more disclosures about the information the government is collecting before congress votes on reauthorization and two u.s. senators have also spoken out against the law senator ron wyden of oregon and mark udall of colorado say the acts they oppose the extension of the law on civil liberties grounds will bring the latest developments of this act as it makes its way through congress and that does it for now for more on the stories we covered go to youtube dot com slash r t america or check out our web site r t dot com slash usa and you can also follow me on twitter abby martin thanks for watching see you in thirty minutes what drives the world the fear mongering used by politicians who makes decisions to break through it to be made who can you trust no one who is you view you with a global reach see where we had a state controlled capitalism.

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