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August 20, 2014

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"The cops said he shot at them—case closed," said Al Cole..."

So are we trying to say that he didn't shoot at them and the police manufactured false testimony and/or evidence? Is there any proof of that?

"They wouldn't release the name of the officer who killed him. Why wouldn't you release the name?"

Really? They *never* released the name? End of story? If so, why not a lawsuit and/or some other kind of investigation initiated by the father.

"They said I threw a plastic baggie, which they didn't have when they took me into custody."

Everyone in jail and prison is innocent. Just ask them. Anyhow, the system worked in this case - if the guy really didn't do anything - because he beat the rap.

"Everyone—or at least, every black person—can recall an incident"

Like I said on the other thread, it isn't a black thing. Whites get stopped, questioned, searched, etc. all the time too. It's how the person reacts to the cops that counts. A factor in how one reacts is how one perceives the event. If one is predisposed to be angry, hostile and paranoid, then one is more likely to react in way that the causes LE to escalate their actions as well.

Blacks are walking around with a huge chip on their collective shoulder and, as a result, they run afoul of cops. Running afoul of cops increases the size of the chip and its burden. Rinse and repeat.

Part of not "acting white" means that you have to replace that cultural milieu with something else and taking responsibility for the consequences of the alternative that is chosen. Too many (and, of course, by no means all) blacks have opted for what is, basically, a prison culture and their are predictable consequences. It is unfortunate that those who have chosen unwisely are impacting those who have done better.

So are we trying to say that he didn't shoot at them and the police manufactured false testimony and/or evidence? Is there any proof of that?

[...]

Everyone in jail and prison is innocent. Just ask them. Anyhow, the system worked in this case - if the guy really didn't do anything - because he beat the rap.

Fascinating contrast here. In the first, we must reject the unofficial narrative out of hand because there's no official corroboration; we must ask for proof before questioning the official narrative. In the second, however, we must not unreservedly accept the official narrative despite its officially corroborated status because of... what, exactly? In this case, no proof is needed to entertain doubts.

There's a common thread between the two stances, of course.

Blacks are walking around with a huge chip on their collective shoulder and, as a result, they run afoul of cops

Cool, that explains it.

Glad we cleared that up.

"In the first, we must reject the unofficial narrative out of hand because there's no official corroboration"

NV, Do I really need to explain how the legal system works and why we have one in the first place.

Would you prefer to have all things legal decided by hearsay and flash mobs?

The system exists and it always will, warts and all. Without it, we become Somalia.

Or is your statement just a variation of "THE MINORITY IS ALWAYS RIGHT MEME"?

IO, you miss the point. Willfully, I suspect, but I'm being uncharitable.

The point is not that you uncritically accept the official narrative in the first case, it's that despite said uncritical acceptance of the official narrative, and the decision reached by the legal system that you so peevishly chide me about in the second, you're unwilling to mention that Mr. Beck was exonerated by the legal system (despite police testimony incriminating him) without raising the specter of him not being innocent.

The point is the contrast. In the first case, we must let the system do its job if we want to entertain the idea that the police might be engaging in misconduct or misrepresentation of the facts on the ground. The system will suss out the truth, and we must abide it, and trust it. In the second, you just can't let it go, though. The system said that the truth was that the police narrative was not correct, that it did not accurately reflect the circumstances surrounding the incident. So while you state that Mr. Beck beat the rap, you feel the need to make mention of the idea that the system may have got it wrong - that he might have been guilty none-the-less.

That's the point. The point is that you can't let pass a mention of an alleged minority offender's exoneration in the face of damning police testimony pass w/o insinuating that the system might have got it wrong, but you don't suggest for a moment that we should have anything but the utmost faith in the system when it comes time for us to be told the police did no wrong, there's no incident to investigate, and that's just that.

The official narrative is only sufficient to stand unquestioned when it conforms to your preferred narrative, and the system is only unquestionably trusted when it's producing results you favor. That's the point, and that's the common thread.

NV, You have something of a point in your last to me.

However, "The point is that you can't let pass a mention of an alleged minority offender's exoneration in the face of damning police testimony pass w/o insinuating that the system might have got it wrong....."

I find your insertion of "minority" into the above to be slightly insulting and an inaccurate innuendo concerning my position.

My position has nothing to do with whether or not someone is a minority. In fact, that is a key part of my thrust. Minorities - and liberals - *seem to want to think* it is about being a minority, when it isn't.

All the white guys in prison also say that they are innocent.

And I will repeat that plenty of white guys get hassled by cops. Plenty of white guys are exonerated after sitting in prison for years; sometimes even on death row.

I have no problem with the idea that the system fails. Sometimes it fails due to well intention, but simply erroneous police and/or prosecutorial work, sometimes due to benign neglect and sometimes due to systemic malfeasance. Furthermore, when it fails it is the duty of the citizens for whom it is supposed to be working to correct it.

Marching through the streets and - especially rioting - before the facts are in is not responsible. Only turning out at 6% for the local election is not responsible if you perceive a problem in the local government. Shouting the race card every time the system is perceived fail is not responsible; unless you're going to do something constructive about it. Using rap speak, smoking crack and having multiple children out of wedlock when you are unemployed/underemployed is not responsible. In fact, it is acting exactly in accord with the most negative stereotypes. It also undermines credibility.

I have no sympathy for those who are their own worst enemies and then blame me (or the man) for their troubles.

IO, you might want to consider that there is a significant amount of room between "Minorities - and liberals - *seem to want to think* it is about being a minority, when it isn't", and insisting (as you certainly appear to) that it is never about being a minority.

Nobody here (that I can recall) says that it is always about being a minority. But pretty much everybody here (present company apparently excepted) is willing to agree that it sometimes is about being a minority. There may be disagreements about specific cases, but everybody else (whether liberal or conservative) is willing to take them on their own set of facts.

wj, Yes, absolutely; sometimes it *is* about being a minority. There *really are* racists and there really are racists cops that might be perfectly friendly and protect and serve a white community within all boundaries of proscribed LE conduct, but crack skulls of black folks. I know this. I really don't live a sheltered life.

I disagree stringently that ongoing racism is the source of the black community's current woes, that just because a black person was stopped/searched, arrested or shot by LE that racism was a motivating factor on the part of LE and that, specifically, the incident which led to M. Brown's death had anything to do with racism or police misconduct.

Liberals and blacks have a knee jerk reaction that has gone on for way too long and has gone way too far.

The witnesses in the Brown case, against LE, are lying and Al Sharpton and, now, Obama/Holder are race baiting. This is the gimme dat crowd in full motion. Their forward momentum will soon be arrested (pardon the pun).

But the left won't learn to let go of their sacred myths and the next time the race baiters cry "Racism right over there!!!!" we'll have to go through all of this all over again.

I'm done here, but will come back in due time to remind you that I told you so.

I find your insertion of "minority" into the above to be slightly insulting and an inaccurate innuendo concerning my position.

My position has nothing to do with whether or not someone is a minority. In fact, that is a key part of my thrust. Minorities - and liberals - *seem to want to think* it is about being a minority, when it isn't.

If this is so, then you'll forgive me for having drawn my erroneous conclusion that it was owing to what under those circumstances can only be described as your remarkably ill-advised choice to describe confrontational and/or detrimentally non-conformist behavior as "not 'acting white'".

The witnesses in the Brown case, against LE, are lying and Al Sharpton and, now, Obama/Holder are race baiting.

There's that objective drive to find the truth before casting judgement, and unflinching refusal to view someone as guilty until proven innocent! Gosh, and to think I was actually considering accusing IO of uncritical knee-jerk obeisance to LEOs...

It's instructive (in a remedial sort of way) to read informed observer, who believes that s/he is just "telling it like it is."

I would guess that white people, even those who live in "progressive" communities, don't deal all that often with African-American communities. I was privileged to be able to do that from time to time in my life, and realized how hard it is to break the color barrier.

(And, yes, there are class barriers too. I live near Appalachia, and know some poor white folks with Confederate racist b.s. on their trucks. Hard to imagine that their attitudes and "lifestyle" is going to put them on the urban professional fast-track anytime soon. And although they've got to do something kind of obvious to be harassed by the cops, they often do.)

Gosh, and to think I was actually considering accusing IO of uncritical knee-jerk obeisance to LEOs...

Precisely what informs IO is left up to the reader, I suppose.

"All the white guys in prison also say that they are innocent."

Horseshit.

Also uninformed and inobservant.

I'm done here, but will come back in due time to remind you that I told you so.

Informed Observer is an [expletive deleted], of course. But is he (or she, but it would be an insult to womanhood to think so) an outlier? (Outliar is possible, but the [geneological expletive deleted] sounds sincere.) How like the "average American" is Informed Observer?

I'd like to think that the average American is not the [unbelievably gross and offensive expletive deleted] that Informed Observer appears to be, but I worry it's not so.

--TP

I disagree stringently that ongoing racism is the source of the black community's current woes...

Funny that. Racist white assholes have been asserting exactly that same line for, well, nearly 400 years.

When are they going to stop?

"I have no sympathy for those who are their own worst enemies"

Not while you're around, IO.

"All the white guys in prison also say that they are innocent."

[Horses#|+].

I was refraining from commenting on this particular informed observation, because it would have required me to serve up anecdata as evidence, and I didn't want to follow IO's lead WRT that particular sin, but since he's "bowed out" and the subject is still raised, allow me to point out that my relatively brief time in corrections showed this to be an uninformed speculation, presumably based on media portrayals, stereotypes, and "common sense". Not all prisoners protest their innocence, and not all who do do so with the same credibility. In my experience. More to the point than IO's invocation of prisoners' perennial protestations of piety when discussing an exonerated individual initially implicated by "impartial" LEOs, my experience there also underscored that not all law enforcement officers' reports of misconduct bore the same credibility when examined critically, nor did all supervisory/administrative personnel chose to examine said reports with similarly critical eyes - some were quite content to rely on prejudices and "first impressions" to decide the facts of the matter before actually examining the first piece of evidence.

But YMMV. That's all anecdata, spooned up by an anonymous source on the Internet, in regards to their experience at one prison during one time period.

The witnesses in the Brown case, against LE, are lying

Well, at least IO has an open mind.

Blacks are walking around with a huge chip on their collective shoulder

there's someone here with a huge chip on his shoulder. i'm not sure he's black. or that he's a he. but i will assume.

i'm not sure he's black
i ordered a second 'not' for that sentence, but it looks like it wasn't delivered on time.

damn you, USPS.

Say what you will about our new "informed observer," he does make one long for Brett's rational discussion and relatively open mind doesn't he?

IO isn't new, not quite. He (I know I'm playing to stereotypes here, but I feel quite confident in doing so) briefly grace us with his presence back in March. He seemed more... collected then.

"The witnesses in the Brown case, against LE, are lying "

Is there any evidence for this? I'm asking--I haven't followed the story in great detail. if there isn't, then even if it turned out to be true there'd be no basis for you coming back to say "I told you so". Unless you think that your general attitude towards blacks who complain of police brutality is supposed to be evidence of something.

From NV's link to one of IO's earlier contributions--

"Waterboarding is child's play and barely, if at all, torture."

There are some other comments there too which are equally dubious, but I already had that argument with others and will leave it alone.

Rule of thumb--when a person chooses a handle like "Informed observer", it usually indicates a person giving himself or herself some unwarranted authority that he (or she) couldn't obtain in any other way.

NV:

But YMMV. That's all anecdata, spooned up by an anonymous source on the Internet

If it helps at all (it doesn't), I can second that with more anonymous anecdata. My neighbor, for quite some time, was a felon (I'd say ex-felon, but I'm pretty sure it sticks with you throughout life). Really nice guy, trying to get his life back on track. I found out a lot of about how much our justice system chews people up through him.

He did not protest his innocence. He was pretty open about his past. I also met a number of people through him...many of them with criminal histories, also pretty blunt about it.

Beyond that, I've never seen much evidence of the 'prisoners always protest their innocence' outside of TV and movies. Perhaps IO has polling data of convicted prisoners that I cannot find.

All I can find data pointing to a startling number of prisoners actually BEING innocent:

http://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/papers.cfm?abstract_id=931454

A genuinely informed observer....
http://www.vox.com/2014/8/14/6003239/police-militarization-in-ferguson
Stamper, Seattle's Chief of Police during the 1999 WTO riots, explained that his decision to use heavy-handed tactics against protesters then was the "worst mistake of my career." This police response, Stamper now believes, was "the catalyst for heightened tension" and a significant reason the situation escalated out of control.

In Seattle, the police department went out dressed in full body armor and gas masks that made them look "like ninjas," and used tear gas against largely-peaceful protesters. Stamper now believes that putting officers on the streets in military gear from the beginning was "an act of provocation," and that keeping officers in their normal uniforms would have been "a huge step in the right direction towards de-escalation."

"It's a lesson, unfortunately, that American law enforcement in general has not learned," said Stamper. Indeed, it is easy to see the parallels between recent police operations in Ferguson this past week and the tactics used in Seattle in 1999, with armored police showing up in overwhelming numbers in response to largely-peaceful protests. "Had you set out to make matters worse," says Stamper, "you couldn't have done a better job."

This article has another view on Ferguson

http://www.businessweek.com/articles/2014-08-21/ferguson-economic-political-conditions-fuel-protest-fury

Early this year, before the summer weather in Ferguson, Mo., turned to a fog of tear gas and a hail of rubber bullets, before the downscale suburb began to share national airtime with Sierra Leone and Iraq, a legal aid firm called ArchCity Defenders prepared a white paper that accused several municipalities in St. Louis County of stopping black drivers disproportionately for traffic violations, fining them in court sessions that were closed to the public, and jailing them when they were unable to pay. Singled out as “chronic offenders” were three neighboring towns in the northern part of the county: Florissant, Bel-Ridge, and Ferguson.

The untitled paper was still sitting in Executive Director Thomas Harvey’s computer on Aug. 9, awaiting finishing touches, when Michael Brown, an unarmed black 18-year-old, was shot dead by Darren Wilson, a white Ferguson police officer.

Who’s to blame in the confrontation that led to Brown’s death has yet to be sorted out. But the ArchCity Defenders report is the clearest evidence to date that Ferguson’s justice system was discriminatory in practice, if not intent, long before the police force’s heavy-handed response to the riots that followed the fatal shooting. Harvey and his co-authors found that middle-class drivers stopped by police routinely hire lawyers who knock speeding tickets down to non-moving violations; poorer drivers, mostly black, who can’t afford lawyers, often find themselves caught in a downward spiral. They get points on their licenses, they can’t afford their fines, they’re jailed, they lose their jobs, they drive with suspended licenses and get into deeper trouble.

make one long for Brett

Brett was a rara avis in terra --
dogged, honor bound, proud, uncomprehending, certain -- we shall not soon see his like.

Perhaps only Bart DePalma is in the same class.

Brett's new home is Crooked Timber, where he can be found cheering for Israel's bombing of Gaza, casting doubt on climate science, and commenting on Ferguson. Here's a sample

link

Here's a sample

gack. it's like any number of ObWi threads from days passed, but with different user names, and in a different font.

Regarding the larger, now systemic honey trap municipalities around the country have set up for themselves as they suck the poor dry via fees, fines, surcharges, interest payments on all of the above:

http://nation.time.com/2013/08/21/welcome-to-prison-will-you-be-paying-cash-or-credit/

It's welfare for the taxpayer.

The taxpayer has made themselves, through the privatization (we know who the f*ckers are whose idea that was, don't we?) of public services, the parasite that feeds on the poor.

If the taxpayer wants law enforcement, we can pay for it.

Here's a sample

Shine on, you crazy diamond.

Once you are in the system, doesn't matter the infraction, missing one payment or one appointment sets off an entire series of further payments, hoops, and slippery slopes into lucrative profit centers for the so-called authorities who are ...

now private entities (nice word -- bilkers, parasites, cons, a superstructure of light-fingered, heavy handed entrepreneurs who are incentivized to keep themselves on the dole and you in the system at your expense ... is more like it).

Privatized jails and now privatized diversion systems designed to divert whatever petty cash and years of future wages away from the poor into their pockets.

No doubt judges, district attorneys, etc have plenty of brothers-in-law bidding for the business.

So maybe, you get a chance to end this sh*t by encouraging a cop or two to take you down in a hail of bullets.

Cheaper all around for the f*cking American taxpayer, while the Courts themselves are over booked, underfunded, and understaffed.

The middle class gets a taste of this via DUIs and such, and it is expensive, but most times we can afford an attorney and apply for further credit to pay the fee to have a guy watch us pee in a cup, and we can still get to our jobs.

It's the circumlocution office meets third-world style corruption, all sold as an efficiency measure to save the taxpayers money.

The lovely thing of course is that is largely bipartisan now.

Meanwhile, at the other end of the big sucking rathole conservatism has made of the country's operations, if your taste runs to paranoia about THOSE underclass parasites over there, the big grifting whatayatalk clown show, dedicated to scaring up the biggest so-called conservative, racist as8holes available to run for office in just about every locale, will be happy to take your money and dole a little of it out to the a*sholes and pocket the rest to keep the rathole in major suckage mode:

http://practicalpoliticking.com/2014/08/18/flushing-your-money-down-the-tea-partys-toilet/

ISIS is wasted on the wrong country.

Course, then we reach #11, not in Ferguson, but the subhuman conservative anti-American lying murderous filth surrounding all of us:

http://www.dailykos.com/story/2014/08/22/1323849/-Conservatives-literally-make-stuff-up-to-smear-Michael-Brown

The ISIS of it is, if conservatives get their way this Fall, any other Darren Wilson without healthcare, or wanting healthcare, or deciding to sign up for Obamacare in the country will be denied access to CTScans, or, according to murderer Mitch McConnell, the government will be shut down.

But they can make up fake CTScans when it's convenient.

Saves money, I guess. As notorious conservative harridan and ratf*cker Larry Klayman said the other day, Obamacare is nothing but reparations to the pickaninnies by racist Obama.

Imhofe, without divulging a shred of proof, claims ISIS is making a weapon to destroy a U.S. city. There is a touching hopefulness in his voice and demeanor that this happens while Obama is President.

No doubt local authorities are taking that as a cue to fire up the armored half-tracks, dress just like ISIS, and double down on harassing their local domestic niggers.

I'll bet you a good many of the Ferguson police, not to be confused with many fine law enforcement officials elsewhere, believe we have a Kenyan in the White House.

Meanwhile, those kids crossing the southern border who Rick Perry is pointing a helicopter mounted machine gun at may be highly trained warriors come to do us in.

http://talkingpointsmemo.com/livewire/tamara-scott-child-immigrants-warriors

By other conservative accounts, you know, low IQ ninnies actually being considered for high office if they haven't already infested the government, the kids are carrying Ebola.

Here's hoping the kids know the right enemies of America to bite.

All to scare up votes to REPRESENT.

Represent who? You?

My dear Count,

Remember, the vermin never surrender, and the fight will always go on:

http://weeklysift.com/2014/08/11/not-a-tea-party-a-confederate-party/

Keep your powder dry.

bobbyp, thank you so much for that link. I was educated in Virginia public schools, and some of the things (such as the "Dunning school" which I googled as a result of reading the article) ring very true.

Sorting out our history is so important. I refuse to give up on us though.

In recent days, I've speculated here, in my singular parodic way, aping the feces-throwing apes on the Right (apologies to apes, who are good people and fairly moderate in their political views), about some things, one being about when Cliven Bundy's Oath Keeper militia types were going to show up in St. Louis to take on abusive gummint authorities, and just a few minutes ago, about whether members of the Ferguson police force believe Obama is a Kenyan.

Well, they are (on the wrong side, amazingly, wearing a gummint uniform and gummint-issued authoritarian murder weapons, and have been there all the time) and they do, it turns out:

http://gregmitchellwriter.blogspot.com/2014/08/shocker-racist-cop-in-ferguson.html

ISIS, the Oath Keepers, Putin's "freedom fighters", and now some American constabulary and Republican types seem so alike in their sadistic rhetoric and their photo-ops, weapons bristling, that they must be all symptoms, nay, comrades in the worldwide conservative scourge sweeping the world.

Confederates, ya might say.

A fine link, bobbyp.
This one is every bit as good:
http://weeklysift.com/2014/08/18/the-ferguson-test/

Meanwhile, a reminder that the problem is as much incompetence/lack of training/overreliance on weaponry as it is plain racism:
http://www.cbsnews.com/news/los-angeles-police-admit-accidentally-killing-tosh-0-production-assistant/
Deputies shot Winkler four times and the other man was shot once. Winkler died from his injuries at a hospital. The other man survived.

Investigators now say Winkler and the man who was bleeding were actually victims of a third man, Alexander McDonald, who lived inside the apartment building, reports the station...

Nigel,

No, that link is better. It expresses eloquently the message I so ineptly try to convey whenever the issue of "race" comes up here and elsewhere.

The recognition of unconscious stereotyping is not "playing the race card". It is a plea to become aware of reality.

Sometimes I fail the Fergusen test. It is a constant struggle.

Thank you.

I've placed weeklysift on my favorites list.

Thanks fellas.

A trail of links led me to this, dare I raise the specter of a highly-frustrating thread (or was it more than one?) from the relatively recent past.

http://weeklysift.com/2014/05/26/ta-nehisi-coates-goes-there-reparations/

That link to the Ferguson Test is really great. Thanks you, Nigel.

To crib from that article, consider just for an instant the number of snide remarks you have seen this summer about the President being "out playing golf when he should have been in the office, working on (pick the crisis of the moment)." From people who somehow never got excited when previous Presidents took vacations or played golf -- and they all did.

From people who somehow never got excited when previous Presidents took vacations or played golf -- and they all did.

My recollection is that everybody always gets excited about the president taking vacation. Just never about a president they happen to agree with.

It's just one of those default talking points that show up...meaningless chatter on the sunday morning talk shows.

I doubt the president's 'vacation' is less stressful than my regular job is, let alone actual vacation. Likely far more stressful. Personally, I'd rather the president stay sane.

Golf is a maddening, expensive sport.

Along about the 11th hole, the one with the elaborate water and sand hazards, I'm usually about in the mood to call in a drone strike against ISIS or wield the veto pen to keep our domestic sadists from murdering their fellow Americans, just to break up the monotony and the frustration.

Then scout the horizon for the drinks caddy and call it a day.

I thought the more interesting image in the link was the comparison of Reagan/Bush with their feet up on the Presidential desk in the Oval Office with Obama doing the same during his candid shots, and the thought of the latter percolating in the septic system Confederate mind that maybe the uppity house boy is in need of a whipping.

But they'll just have to settle for nine bullets in the troublesome field slaves.

See, it always Jackie Robinson's responsibility to maintain quiet dignity, as Branch Rickey cautioned, cause any show of attitude will get you killed.

Count, that parallel to Jackie Robinson is actually quite striking. We can only hope that, like Robinson, Obama has made things far easier for those who follow after.

Dignity is not enough, now that happiness for an unfortunately large portion of the sadist population is a warm gun and cold bodies:

http://www.washingtonmonthly.com/political-animal-a/2014_08/shoot_shoot051804.php

Golf is a maddening, expensive sport.

Maddening, yes. That's the evil design. Expensive? It costs me $10/week at my broken-down-at-the-heels public course, but it's an outlier....disheveled would be a misrepresentation....

Thompson: If you google the Bush feet planting on the oval office desk, all I got was recent articles pointing out that the outrage at Obama doing it was, you know, offset by Bush II doing exactly the same thing without much comment. Perhaps you can show me I have the wrong impression here.

bobbyp:

If you search bush vacation with a date range of 2000-2008, you get a number of articles about how much vacation he takes (frex: http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2006/08/03/AR2006080300663.html http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/blog/2008/03/04/BL2008030401392.html) and the poor timing of his vacation (frex: http://www.slate.com/articles/news_and_politics/war_stories/2004/04/the_outoftowner.html http://thinkprogress.org/politics/2005/08/30/1683/as-katrina-struck-bush-vacationed/ http://thinkprogress.org/politics/2008/12/29/34190/bush-vaca-middle-east/ http://www.huffingtonpost.com/vincent-bugliosi/george-bushs-unseemly-res_b_103592.html)

It was even in Fahrenheit 9/11: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xZwrteFNic4

Bush took a lot of vacation. He was also a terrible president. I don't begrudge his vacation time. I begrudge the fact he was a terrible president.

Obama has taken far less...but it doesn't make me think he is a good president.

If your point is that Obama is getting more crap about vacation from RW pundits than Bush got from LW pundits, I don't have a good methodology for comparison.

I had two points: One, the president on vacation is going to be brought up by pundits, and defended by other pundits, whenever a president takes vacation. Two, even on vacation they are probably dealing with a lot of crap.

In short, I predict our next several presidents will all get crap about vacation, regardless of their politics. I also don't think it is now, or will be, a valid criticism.

Thompson,

I was not referring to Obama's vacations or how many of them he has taken, or for how long.

I was referring specifically and rather pointedly to the charge of "disrespect" for planting his brogans on the Oval Office Desk.

Perhaps your reading comprehension is low on Sundays?

And yes, Bush II set a rather high standard for number of days off....about twice as many as Obama has taken as we approach six years in office. He was criticized a great deal at the time by "the left" for being a lazy asshole.

I don't really care. To my way of thinking, he was an asshole to begin with.

Perhaps your reading comprehension is low on Sundays?

I just assumed you were responding to something I said, rather than something unrelated that I didn't mention.

To my way of thinking, he was an asshole to begin with.

Every once in a while, we agree.

"Every once in a while, we agree."

bobbyp takes pyrrhic victories where he can find them.

Obama has taken more crap than any President my memory and a person doesn't have to have some kind of sophisticated methodology to figure that out.The vacation crap is just this week's. There's something equally spiteful and stupid every week and its been that way for his entire term in office.

More even than Clinton who also was the target of organized rightwing hate mongering.


Changing subject here: it's depressing to me how many people respond to police violence against a non-white by trying desperately to confabulate rationalizations for blaming the victim. It's just sad. And I can't think of a motive for that behavior that doesn't reflect poorly on the person doing the confabulating. At best it seems like a clueless knee jerk support for authority.

On blaming the victim, TNC nails it again:

"And if Michael Brown was not angelic, I was practically demonic. I had my first drink when I was 11. I once brawled in the cafeteria after getting hit in the head with a steel trash can. In my junior year I failed five out of seven classes. By the time I graduated from high school, I had been arrested for assaulting a teacher and been kicked out of school (twice.) And yet no one who knew me thought I had the least bit of thug in me. That is because I also read a lot of books, loved my Commodore 64, and ghostwrote love notes for my friends. In other words, I was a human being. A large number of American teenagers live exactly like Michael Brown. Very few of them are shot in the head and left to bake on the pavement..."

I don't know if this is a comforting thought or not, but I attribute the knee jerk support for authority as indicative that many people think things are changing and are having trouble handling that. This is not to claim that it was just societal pressure that makes them behave that way, but when people feel they are being pressured, they tend to behave pretty badly.

knee jerk support for authority as indicative that many people think things are changing and are having trouble handling that.

That reminded me of Altemeyers work about Right Wing Authoritarianism, enough to page through his book, The Authoritarians, and find this quote:

But we do know that they were raised by their parents to be afraid of others, because both the parents and their children tell us so.

Sometimes it’s all rather predictable: authoritarians’ parents taught fear of homosexuals, radicals, atheists and pornographers. But they also warned their children, more than most parents did, about kidnappers, reckless drivers, bullies and drunks--bad guys who would seem to threaten everyone’s children. So authoritarian followers, when growing up, probably lived in a scarier world than most kids do, with a lot more boogeymen hiding in dark places,and they’re still scared as adults.

I'm not the biggest fan of social science. Not out of any disrespect towards the scientists themselves, just concern over the large number of uncontrolled variables in their studies. But I do remember enjoying Altemeyer's writing, if not believing everything he writes.

Has the NYT run an article about Wilson? From everything I've read about the Ferguson PD, he's probably got a record, and by that I mean a record of felonies.

and by that I mean a record of felonies.

And if he does? Would that justify the shooting? Would that justify the sluggish internal reporting of the shooting (https://www.aclu.org/aclu-response-ferguson )?

No, it would not.

Changing subject here: it's depressing to me how many people respond to police violence against a non-white by trying desperately to confabulate rationalizations for blaming the victim.

Oh, it's pretty simple. We don't want to admit that it can happen. It's rationalization of the simplest and most common sort -- the truth is not something we wish to believe, so we find a comforting lie and cling to it.

We don't want to believe that a white cop can just gun down an innocent black kid -- because racism or corruption or whatever -- and have his whole department close ranks to cover it up. That's a horrifying thing to believe.

The implications are staggering, just for one town -- and my god, what if it's common? That means police are, literally, able to get away with murder and cover it up. And people don't notice. (The fact that it might be racially motivated murder is is either the topper on the cake, or an even worse truth, depending).

So we look at that and say "Nope, obviously the kid was a criminal and the cop was in fear for his life. Because the alternative is to horrifying for me to accept".

Then there's all the racism, which is pretty obvious. It's not just Jim Crow living on -- we've had a major political party running on, effectively, "scary black people coming to take your stuff" for fifty years.

And a media that sells more the more scared you are. (And a gun industry that does the same). Fear sells. Racism sells.

The drumbeat sinks in.

</i>?

and by that I mean a record of felonies.

And it seems like he does not according to CSM:

http://www.csmonitor.com/USA/Justice/2014/0826/New-audio-in-Michael-Brown-case-How-important-in-whirl-of-narratives

A purported Brown rap sheet has circulated on the Internet, but law enforcement in St. Louis County say Brown had no priors.

Well, if the guy doesn't have any real priors, obviously it was necessary to create some in order to keep things neat. Wouldn't do to have things fail to fit the required narrative.

I wonder if anyone will run down the individual whose creative prowess we have to thank for that little effort....

I think Barry was suggesting that the arresting officer has felonies rather than suggesting that Brown has. Not sure if it is possible to be a police officer and have felony arrests or convictions.

This extraordinarily disturbing story from the UK demonstrates that institutional misbehaviour comes in many guises.
Left wing anti racism in authority is no guarantee of benevolence:
http://www.theguardian.com/society/2014/aug/26/rotherham-sexual-abuse-children

I am still trying to process the extent of what went on.

One point mentioned but not highlighted in the Guardian article is the efforts of Times reporter Andrew Norfolk, whose persistence in the face of official and legal obstruction have been exemplary.

I think Barry was suggesting that the arresting officer

My apologies. In that case, from the same link:

Wilson is a young officer with a rough upbringing who had been fired along with all his colleagues after nearby Jennings, Mo., dismantled a corrupt and allegedly racist police department. Other than that, Wilson had only commendations on his record

Nigel:

That is a very disturbing link. Thank you for sharing it, I don't know if it would have shown up in my regular newsfeeds.

Left wing anti racism in authority is no guarantee of benevolence:

Transparency and oversight are the only guarantee. Failing that, aggressive investigative journalism, as demonstrated by Mr. Norfolk.

Worth watching...

http://blog.simplejustice.us/2014/08/27/but-for-video-real-black-man-of-new-jersey-edition/

this video has it all, with special note of the cop screaming that Marcus Jeter, hands raised in his car, for him to stop reaching for the cop’s gun. Where have we heard this before?

Left wing anti racism in authority is no guarantee of benevolence:

This (rather bleak and appalling) story kinda highlights some issues I've always had with the multicultural integration model (though that's not to say I'm anywhere near comfortable with monocultural integration - it just has different problems), although a part of me wants to wonder if a lot of this isn't a healthy dose of plain-old simple misogyny at work ("boys will be boys, girls will be over-dramatic, fickle sluts, and anyway, inter-community relations are more important than a few drunk hussies have second thoughts the morning after" or suchlike). Some of the most staunch misogynists I've ever met were self-satisfied middle-class male liberals (in the "proponent of milquetoast centerist-to-center-left liberal capitalism" sense) serving in mid-tier roles in public institutions. But there's not nearly enough info there to make sweeping statements, aside from those like thompson regarding the wisdom of eschewing complacency and rote trust w/o verification, so I'm just airing out my prejudices...

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Whatnot


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