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The blue line: race-ing justice 25 April 2008

Posted by marisacat in Culture of Death, Inconvenient Voice of the Voter, WAR!.
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A State Supreme Court justice in Queens found three police detectives not guilty on all charges in connection with the shooting death of Sean Bell in 2006. The crowd outside the courthouse received the verdict with anger and shock, but dispersed an hour and a half later without any major confrontation.

Photo: Uli Seit for The New York Times

^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^

From the Village Voice:

[I]n the run up to Cooperman giving his verdict, the courtroom was ringed with 17 court officers, who remained standing in front of the pews, while another 11 jammed the aisle separating supporters of Bell, filling the pews on the right side, and the backers of the cops, seated to the left. Before the judge entered the audience was asked to refrain from making any outbursts and remain sitting after the verdict until Cooperman had exited the court.

Shortly after, the judge finished up his reasoning and announced he was acquitting the officers on all charges. Ignoring the pre-verdict instructions, Nicole Paultre Bell, Bell’s fiancee and widow, stood up immediately and walked out of the courtroom. Rows of Bell supporters followed her. “Unadulterated bullshit,” one man said on his way out. In a second row pew, Bell’s father, dressed all in white, buried his face while shaking his head as Bell’s mother broke into tears while being consoled by a family member next to him.

After the potentially explosive verdict was given, Mayor Michael Bloomberg conveniently attended an unscheduled ribbon-cutting ceremony about a mile away from where Bell was shot to announce the opening of a job center in Jamaica. “There are no winners in a trial like this,” the mayor said. “An innocent man lost his life, a bride lost her groom, two daughters lost their father, and a mother and a father lost their son.

No verdict could ever end the grief that those who knew and loved Sean Bell suffer.

Judge Cooperman’s responsibility, however, was to decide the case based on the evidence presented in the courtroom. America is a nation of laws, and though not everyone will agree with the verdicts and opinions issued by the courts, we accept their authority. Today’s decision is no different. There will be opportunities for peaceful dissent and potentially for further legal recourse—those are the rights we enjoy in a democratic nation. We don’t expect violence or law-breaking, nor is there any place for it. We have come too far as society—and as a City—to be dragged back to those days.

After the morning court instruction to attend the verdict and wait politely afterward for the judge to leave, Bloomberg then cautioned the community of Sean Bell against violence. I am sure the accurate parsing of the judge’s stated reasoning is that this community did not deserve justice:

Noting the unreliability of prosecution witnesses, through their renunciations and inconsistent statements, past criminal convictions, demeanor while testifying and motivation to lie on the stand, Cooperman acquitted the cops following a bench trial, saying “These factors played a significant part in the people’s ability to prosecute their case and had the effect of eviscerating the credibility of the people’s witnesses….at times the testimony just didn’t make sense. “

Not much left to say, really. Power spoke with its heavy hand.

*****************************************************************

This languished in Moderation from near the end of the previoius thread… and it fits in with this post:

Madman in the Marketplace
| |

Manhattan Basement Sells for $801K

NEW YORK (AP) — Looking for another sign that Manhattan real estate prices aren’t headed for the cellar? A basement storage room in the famed Dakota apartment building fetched $801,000 in a recent sale.

High prices are nothing new for the Dakota, a gorgeous, gabled palace overlooking Central Park, best known as the home of John Lennon and the scene of his 1980 assassination. Yoko Ono still lives there and its apartments routinely sell for many millions of dollars.

The room’s buyer, hedge fund manager John Angelo, said the price was reasonable, considering what he’s getting.

The space is 800 square feet and has 20-foot-high ceilings and two windows, he said, making it bigger than many apartments in Manhattan, where a studio can be as small as 300 square feet and the median price for an apartment is over $850,000.

His storage space also has a bathroom and electricity. “I could make it a squash court if I wanted,” Angelo said, only half joking.

He said he plans to turn the room into a small gymnasium and open it up for use by other residents of the building, which, for all its luxury, doesn’t have a common exercise room.

Angelo and his wife already live in the Dakota. They acquired the basement space from a departing resident, Juliana Curran Terian, who sold her apartment for $20.5 million in January. That unit was once owned by the composer Leonard Bernstein. She sold the storage room separately.

While $801,000 may sound like a lot for a basement den that cannot legally be used as a dwelling, it isn’t unusual to see well-off Manhattanites paying top dollar for auxiliary space, said real estate appraiser Jonathan Miller.

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Comments»

1. diane - 25 April 2008

Priceless, heartbreaking photo…

2. wilfred - 25 April 2008

Power indeed. Bloomberg distanced himself mightily today, a real creep who needs to never hold public office again.

What a travesty, all I can wonder is where is the next one because you know it is on its way.

3. marisacat - 25 April 2008

hmm I don’t know wehre I am picking up this addendum that is appearing at the bottom of my posts, the ”related posts” thing.

hmmm. It does not appear in my draft version. Not a bad thing, but not soemthing i put there.

4. Arcturus - 25 April 2008

Systemic. Institutionalized. Racism.

(WordPress tags, like all other such whther blog or facebook-style, are useful for ANy who would keep tabs. like those up-coming Commish Hearings?

5. Madman in the Marketplace - 25 April 2008
6. Madman in the Marketplace - 25 April 2008

IOZ

Never let it be said that we ignore our newbies. Since several saw fit to impugn my dedication to the advance of People of Gender, I thought it would be justified to lay out a few basic principles of anarchofeminism, such as it is.

To critique patriarchy is to move necessarily in the direction of anarchy, since the state is finally patriarchy manifested as a political economy, yet there remains a propensity among many, perhaps most, feminists of my acquaintance to view the ascension of this or that woman to a position of importance and influence within the state apparatus as a general good. Thus it is taken, with caveats, as a sign of progress that Condoleeza Rice is the Secretary of State, or that Nancy Pelosi is the Speaker of the House, or that Hillary Clinton is a prominent contender for the Presidency of the United States. In reality this isn’t advancement, but retrogression. It’s like claiming J. Edgar Hoover and Roy Cohn as examples of queer advancement.

7. marisacat - 25 April 2008

No wonder Obama has not energy in Indiana today. Big cracks in internal support for him. Catch the Dean comments.

Financial Times

Democrats to choose ‘by end of June’

By Lionel Barber, Edward Luce and Andrew Ward in Washington

Published: April 25 2008 22:04 | Last updated: April 25 2008 22:04

The Democratic party’s “superdelegates” have every right to overturn the popular vote and choose the candidate they believe would be best equipped to defeat John McCain in a general election, according to Howard Dean, chairman of the US Democratic National Committee.

Mr Dean, who was a presidential candidate in 2004 and is a former governor of Vermont, spoke to the Financial Times just two days after Hillary Clinton put her campaign back in contention with a near double-digit margin of victory over Barack Obama in the Pennsylvania primary.

trying to get to the rest of the article…not blocked by sub wall but by registration wall.

8. marisacat - 25 April 2008

6

ain’t it the truth. I sued to have a phrase I used at the lawfirm for promotions and elevations (rarely, when it happened)

“a human made it thru”.

not much else mattered, frankly.

9. NYCO - 25 April 2008

Good quote from IOZ. But then again, I thought Hillary was trying to destroy democracy as we know it, so maybe she really is an anarchist in disguise.

Or something.

10. marisacat - 25 April 2008

here is the whole FT article… getting thru the registration wall, and remember what email I had used for that site was like cracking teeth:

Democrats to choose ‘by end of June’

By Lionel Barber, Edward Luce and Andrew Ward in Washington

Published: April 25 2008 22:04 | Last updated: April 25 2008 22:04

The Democratic party’s “superdelegates” have every right to overturn the popular vote and choose the candidate they believe would be best equipped to defeat John McCain in a general election, according to Howard Dean, chairman of the US Democratic National Committee.

Mr Dean, who was a presidential candidate in 2004 and is a former governor of Vermont, spoke to the Financial Times just two days after Hillary Clinton put her campaign back in contention with a near double-digit margin of victory over Barack Obama in the Pennsylvania primary.

He said there was nothing in the DNC’s rules that would prevent the party’s unelected superdelegates, who make up about a fifth of the overall delegate tally and who will ultimately pick the winner, from “doing what they want”.

Mr Obama maintains a slim lead in the popular vote with just nine nominating contests left to go concluding on June 3 in Montana and South Dakota.

“If it’s very very close, they [the superdelegates] will do what they want anyway,” said Mr Dean.

“I think the race is going to come down to the perception in the last six or eight races of who the best opponent for McCain will be. I do not think in the long run it will come down to the popular vote or anything else.”

However, he added that it was highly unlikely that the superdelegates – of whom roughly 300 out of 800 remain undecided – would go against whichever candidate was ahead on the popular vote and among pledged delegates in practice. “I think it is very unlikely – I have never seen it happen. In fact it has never happened. But it is possible and they have every right to do it.”

Some commentators have speculated that if the race remains deadlocked after June 3 then a senior figure such as Al Gore, the former vice-president, or Nancy Pelosi, the speaker of the House of Representatives, could prevail on one of the candidates to withdraw – with most people focusing on Mrs Clinton.

But Mr Dean, who some have criticised for allegedly mismanaging the drawn-out primary calendar, dismissed that scenario as “total bullshit”.

He said the last such figure who had the authority to do that was John Bailey, a Connecticut Democrat who was chairman of the DNC from 1960 to 1968.

“That person has been a figment of the punditocracy’s imagination for 50 years or more,” he said. “It is great drama to think of such a thing and Washington loves drama. But the truth is that as a former candidate I can promise you only you know when it is time to leave.”

However, Mr Dean said the Democratic party’s chances of regaining the White House would be badly damaged were the race to continue up until the party’s nominating convention in Denver in late August – as many now fear it will. “If we go into the convention divided, we will come out of it divided,” he said. “Somebody is going to lose this race with 49 per cent of the delegates and we can’t win if we’re divided.”

He said it would take at least two months for the supporters of the losing candidate to get over their “grieving” and unite behind the winner, which meant the nomination had to be decided by the end of June. He said most of the remaining uncommitted superdelegates were either in the DNC, the House of Representatives or the Senate and that he, Mrs Pelosi and Harry Reid, the Senate majority leader, all agreed on the end of June deadline.

“It is not just the extra campaigning time – although that is an issue,” he said. “It is the healing time that is important. I know this because I went through it myself. [Your supporters] go to Iowa and knock on doors and spend their weekends in Pennsylvania. These are real investments and when your candidate doesn’t win it’s incredibly painful. It takes time to get over that.”

Mr Dean appeared confident that the uncommitted superdelegates would know what to do in early June even if he could not specify which yardstick they would use to select the winner. “Politics is a herd mentality,” he said. “There is a gestalt in politics when suddenly people see things in a synchronous way. Politically there will be some feeling at the end of this process that somebody is better than the other person in terms of taking on John McCain

11. Madman in the Marketplace - 25 April 2008

I hope the fuckers do choose Clinton.

12. liberalcatnip - 25 April 2008

Is Dean just trying to make himself relevant in all of this or what?

13. wilfred - 25 April 2008

Obama’s Losing it!
Hillary’s Ascending!
McCain’s Gonna Win!

Next week reverse all of this. Then repeat as needed.

I need a neck brace from the all the pundit-lash.

14. marisacat - 25 April 2008

well my guess is Obama / handlers have been told to get a credible set of wins on track and start managing the story line.

I know that the interview I saw with Axelrod in Indiana the night of the PA vote, he was very very nervous.

I think if the Dems slam McC one more time as “old”…. he may mention that Obamas’ grandmother was one of two “first women Vice Presidents” (she and a Japanese woman were elevated together) of Bank of Hawaii. And I think she rose to that job within a couple years of joining the escrow dept. Some of the storylines Obama/handlers/Dem party has built will crumple.

15. marisacat - 25 April 2008

13

well I am sorry wilfred. I am going to go on thinking about the election.

16. wilfred - 25 April 2008

lol Marisa, it was about 3 hours of Hardball, Olbermann and The Verdict with the MSNBC host whose name i can never remember.

17. liberalcatnip - 25 April 2008

Iraqi oil pipeline blown up again.

In related local news, one electric bicycle shop here in Calgary is getting orders from around the world as commuters ditch their cars.

18. liberalcatnip - 25 April 2008

The Verdict – Dan Abrams

Here comes Wright on Moyers’ show…should be interesting.

19. bayprairie - 25 April 2008

same shit. different day.

In May 1977 Houston police beat José Campos Torres, a 23 year old ex-marine, so badly that the city jail would not book him. He was then taken to Buffalo Bayou, beaten again, and thrown in the Bayou where he drowned.

<

then the system gave everyone a big lesson in how it works. The all white jury convicted these two cops of only the misdemeanor of criminally negligent manslaughter! They received one year probation and a $1 fine. The life of a Chicano was worth $1. Again, hundreds took to the streets. And again, the system came up with new tricks to try and fool the people. Now we were told to have faith in the federal government, that they would step in and give us justice. But People United to Fight Police Brutality and others redoubled our efforts, going out among the people with tens of thousand of leaflets, rallies, car caravans, and marches, saying that only the people could get justice.

And again we went through a trial, this time around in federal court. Three of the cops, the two from the state trial plus one more, were convicted of civil rights violations and assault. But the judge put off the sentencing for six weeks until March 28, 1978. And no wonder. He gave them a ten-year suspended sentence on the civil rights violation charges and one year in a country club federal prison on the assault charge.

After almost a year–a year in which many people put their faith in the courts and waited for justice to be served–the system had given its verdict…

20. NYCO - 26 April 2008

You know, this whole Amanda Marcotte thing seems to me to point out the problems with the “Obama coalition.”

Because here you have one part of Obama’s base (women of color) and another part of Obama’s base (white women who have book readings in cute urban cafe’s with “Vegan” signs out front)… and they are not getting along.

Anecdotal, since we don’t even know if everyone in that discussion actually supports Obama… but this paints a picture of a “base” that is not really a “base” — that is, one that got together beforehand and decided to send someone into a presidential contest. It suggests that his “base” is really just a loose collection of demographics with very different gut interests, and these demographics are not really understanding each other.

So wow, Obama gave a big speech on race; but it seems half his “base” was maybe barely listening. That’s not very promising for long-term success.

21. NYCO - 26 April 2008

What do people think about the fact that 2 of the accused cops in the Sean Bell case are black? Do you think it makes the case “different,” or that it doesn’t make it different at all?

22. NYCO - 26 April 2008

Sorry to post three times in a row… but again… “You can’t make this stuff up!”

I have returned from hospital with a decidedly reformed viewpoint. Those of us with college degrees and some degree of intellect often forget how the other half lives. Instead of confronting directly what seems to us like superstitious pseudo-science or urban legends, we forget how very real these prejudices and unquestioned theories are. We dismiss them as quackery and scoff at their very existence in any rational plane of existence.

Let’s be honest with ourselves. The majority of people are salt of the earth toilers. Those of us at the top of the intellectual pyramid are still very much a minority, no matter how vocal we may be.

…There’s an inherent tragedy in the lives of the working class, but also a deep humanity. I am aware speaking in these terms may seem presumptuous or haughty, and that is not my intention.

Uhhh… sure!

I doff my Sociology hat for a moment to point out that often times those of us who blog may forget to contemplate our own classism and elitism, which is just as destructive a force as racism or economic disparities.

Could someone contemplate my navel for me? It’s so hard for me to do it myself sometimes.

23. marisacat - 26 April 2008

well his base, really, has been white male older pundit and political writers. It’s been interesting to watch, Al Hunt, Jonathan Alter, EJ Dionne, the line up at TNR… and so on.

Then black writers on the op/ed pages. Eugene Robinson, Bob Herbert and so on.

His cadre of aging conservative pundits seems to be cracking up. For weeks now. Noonan will be the last to go, I think.

His hard core of aging white so called liberals (basically men who have been squishy hangers on for decades in our sick system) really is his hard core. The rest of media – and some important voices, Fournier of AP for one – were going to peel off imo. For one thing if you read way too much on this cycle (and I did), Obama can be very unpleasant. To ordinary voters in small fora AND to media.

CA was a good slice of what is wrong. Little to no real Latino outreach (this is not being discussed, much, as Obama crashes to earth these days, but it is a big issue for the fall, I would think) and what there was was late and patchwork. CA has 6% black vote and 36% Latino vote. Obama won a heady, but narrow, strip along the coast. That was it. Couple of specks over by NV. She took it by 10. It was also reported that we had, as share of the vote, less black turn out than in 04. That same report came out of TX. Who knows.

I assume he ends up with the nom… but to me the whole thing is shakey as hell. I am glad I just watch and no longer stress if ‘the Democrat’ in the vise can hold it together, do anything, not screw up. Etc.

Oh and i just read last night, quite blithely stated by EJ Dionne, that the Obama camp just recently organised their Catholic outreach. That was his excuse for the bad perf in PA with white Catholics. Gee I would have thought it was RACE. That’s been the out always before. It certainly is the one plouffe wants to use (interview with NJ with Douglass, McC can have the racist vote, who cares /paraphrase but close)

The other worry for the Dems is does Obama have the instinct to bring McC down, to go for his weak spots. What I see is the party, a few elderly senators (Rockefeller and McGovern trying to insult him over his service) trying to do it for Obama/for the party (McGovern supports HilPac)

It’s redundant by now to say “popcorn”..

24. marisacat - 26 April 2008

21

I am waiting for Obama to point that out. As a dodge to say much of anything real (he burbled the “nation of laws” slobber). I would imagine McC might point it out as well.

Well, I think it comes down to the “thin blue line”. They stick together.

And god knows what they were really doing there that night “undercover”.

25. marisacat - 26 April 2008

I am aware speaking in these terms may seem presumptuous or haughty, and that is not my intention.

LOL I used to say Dkossers had two navels. One to contemplate and one to emit the reinforcing language or soft elevator music.

So pathetic.

26. NYCO - 26 April 2008

Somebody start a blog collecting this stuff… were the Deaniacs ever this wacko?

This past autumn (2007), a remarkable comet, Holmes, appeared in the nightime sky, as a huge blue sphere (larger than the diameter of our sun). It’s path of maximal brightness carried it through the constellation of Perseus, crossing in front of two of that constellation’s stars in particular- Mirfak, and Algol. Pleases join me below the fold to explore this myth’s relevance for our own time…

Obama was born with his sun in Leo, and his story exemplifies the quest of the Solar Hero. His father, who joins with his mother on an island, conceives a child, and soon thereafter leaves the child and mother to continue his own journeying. Obama, a ‘special ‘child, left to create his own internal image of ‘father’, and related meanings of strength, protection, leadership, etc.

The Holmes comet appears just as the presidential race is kicking into high gear, illuminating the concept of the hero vanquishing the monster, a monster that turns people into stone if they gaze upon her. Does it not seem as if our country today is all locked up, constricted, restricted, with ever shrinking mobility and freedom of movement?

Perseus had help from the gods. Does it not feel as if some special hand is guiding Obama on his journey, I mean, as he has said, the utter improbability of it all?

Of especial significance for me is the star Mirfak, the elbow of Perseus’s sword arm. Although he should not directly look at her (engage in the dirty politics she is so skilled at), he does need to utilize his elbows, and when the moment comes, cut strongly and swiftly.

And lastly, let us not forget that the comet is BLUE.

27. marisacat - 26 April 2008

I feel sorry for whoever wrote that re-telling of the Christ Child. What utter bullshte.

Heileman in NYMag:

[F]or a few weeks back in February, during Obama’s astonishing string of primary victories, this projection seemed too pessimistic. First, in Virginia and Maryland, Obama ventured into two racially diverse states and ate into Clinton’s impregnable base among working-class whites. In Virginia, he carried the white vote overall and beat her among whites earning under $50,000 a year; in Maryland, he defeated her among white blue-collar men and white Catholics. Then came Wisconsin, where he trounced HRC by nine points among whites overall and won among voters at every income and education level. Suddenly, the pertinent question was: What Clinton coalition?

But in Ohio and Pennsylvania (and, to a lesser extent, Texas), Hillary was able to reassemble that coalition with a vengeance. In the Buckeye and Keystone states, she scored 64 and 63 percent, respectively, of the overall white vote and racked up even higher margins among blue-collar Caucasians. Why does this matter? Because for more than 40 years, the ability to capture working-stiff whites has been the sine qua non for Democratic success at the presidential level. Jimmy Carter and Bill Clinton did relatively well at this and won; Mike Dukakis, Al Gore, and John Kerry did not. Indeed, the writers John Judis and Ruy Teixeira have calculated that, to win the White House, a Democrat needs to win 45 to 48 percent of lunch-pail-toting white voters in the heartland states.

That Obama is having big trouble with such voters would be bad enough by itself. But making matters worse is his abysmal recent performance among white Catholics: He claimed 34 percent of their vote in Ohio and 29 in Pennsylvania. In the past two elections, according to Brookings Institution scholar Bill Galston, among others, white Catholics have emerged as perhaps the most pivotal constituency in the electorate—one concentrated in midwestern states that Democrats must win and whose dramatic swing toward George W. Bush was arguably decisive in 2000 and 2004. (According to Galston, in fact, that shift alone accounted for Dubya’s victory over Kerry in Ohio and Florida.)::snip::

28. Madman in the Marketplace - 26 April 2008

The Pentagon Strangles Our Economy: Why the U.S. Has Gone Broke – By Chalmers Johnson

It is virtually impossible to overstate the profligacy of what our government spends on the military. The Department of Defense’s planned expenditures for the fiscal year 2008 are larger than all other nations’ military budgets combined. The supplementary budget to pay for the current wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, not part of the official defense budget, is itself larger than the combined military budgets of Russia and China. Defense-related spending for fiscal 2008 will exceed $1 trillion for the first time in history. The U.S. has become the largest single seller of arms and munitions to other nations on Earth. Leaving out President Bush’s two on-going wars, defense spending has doubled since the mid-1990s. The defense budget for fiscal 2008 is the largest since the second world war.

Before we try to break down and analyze this gargantuan sum, there is one important caveat. Figures on defense spending are notoriously unreliable. The numbers released by the Congressional Reference Service and the Congressional Budget Office do not agree with each other. Robert Higgs, senior fellow for political economy at the Independent Institute, says: “A well-founded rule of thumb is to take the Pentagon’s (always well publicized) basic budget total and double it.” Even a cursory reading of newspaper articles about the Department of Defense will turn up major differences in statistics about its expenses. Some 30-40% of the defense budget is ‘black,'” meaning that these sections contain hidden expenditures for classified projects. There is no possible way to know what they include or whether their total amounts are accurate.

There are many reasons for this budgetary sleight-of-hand — including a desire for secrecy on the part of the president, the secretary of defense, and the military-industrial complex — but the chief one is that members of Congress, who profit enormously from defense jobs and pork-barrel projects in their districts, have a political interest in supporting the Department of Defense. In 1996, in an attempt to bring accounting standards within the executive branch closer to those of the civilian economy, Congress passed the Federal Financial Management Improvement Act. It required all federal agencies to hire outside auditors to review their books and release the results to the public. Neither the Department of Defense, nor the Department of Homeland Security, has ever complied. Congress has complained, but not penalized either department for ignoring the law. All numbers released by the Pentagon should be regarded as suspect.

29. marisacat - 26 April 2008

really good article by CJ.. thanks for that…

30. bayprairie - 26 April 2008

Nyco at 21 said

What do people think about the fact that 2 of the accused cops in the Sean Bell case are black?

it seems to me that minority police acting as gatekeepers to maintain the status quo, would not negate racism within the status quo itself. here’s a few things i found that makes sense to me.

Lloyd Parker, Director of Shape community center located in the Third Ward (Houston)

It’s not how many police you have in a community, it’s what system of policing they operate under. And I don’t care if you’re Black, Latino, Asian or whatever, or even white, if the system that you function under is corrupt, how can you not be corrupt and stay there?”

or this

Dr. Sanders Anderson Jr. associate professor in the department of public affairs at Texas Southern University (Houston)

Well, oftentimes what happens is that one joins the force, and after having been on the force, then one becomes a part of it. It’s hard to break out … and then the routine of the job and what other people say; one is socialized into that kind of thinking, one has to work against socialization in any field, in any area. But being a police officer, a kind of para-military organization, the challenge is much more difficult, I think. But there has to be a constant monitoring from the top.”

Parker again

“Colors of the people have changed, you might have a few more people of color there than you had then. You might have a few more people in positions of authority, or quote unquote ‘illusions of authority’ than you had then. But the system remains the same. I think Thomas Malonson wrote a song a long time ago that said, ‘Nothing’s changing but the faces, but the system is still in tact.'”

of course i only know my region and nothing about the staus quo in new york city. but i hold the opinion that while expressions of anglo-american racism have differed greatly from region to region, and over time, the underlying nature of anglo racism in this country is much more uniform. today and yesterday reading the news out of NYC, and some of the offensive comments in the threads at the new york times, frankly, i don’t a lot of difference.

31. Madman in the Marketplace - 26 April 2008

The contempt that NYC cops have for citizens is palpable. Nearly every interaction I had w/ them when I lived there, including when we called for them to come pick up a shoplifter we’d caught, was nearly always very negative. They weren’t much better towards us than they were to the criminal. They wanted nothing to do with us or them. I saw three of them harrass an elderly asian homeless man once, it was terrible.

32. Madman in the Marketplace - 26 April 2008

Did Israelis Leak New Spy Info to Thwart War?

Over at the American Conservative magazine’s blog, Antiwar.com columnist and former CIA officer Philip Giraldi reports that Israeli sources have indicated to him that the recent leak to the FBI about the new-old Israeli spy case came from inside the Israeli government toward the end of thwarting Ehud Olmert, Dick Cheney and the War Party’s plans to expand the Middle Eastern slaughter to Iran – and that there are more spies to be revealed…

Hmmmmmm. Reproducing a blockquote from within that piece:

The leak of the information at the present time is believed to be linked to proposed closed congressional hearings at the end of this month in which the White House had planned to use several Israeli intelligence officers to provide evidence on the alleged Syrian nuclear program that was bombed on September 6, 2007. It is now unlikely that Israeli intelligence officers will allow themselves to be questioned because they would almost certainly be asked about Israeli spying on the US. Vice President Dick Cheney and Olmert had apparently planned on using the congressional briefings as a launch pad to intensify diplomatic and military pressure against both Syria and Iran. It is believed that the “doves” in the Olmert administration who leaked the information are seeking to make a military confrontation more difficult and are hoping that negotiations, particularly with Syria, will instead take place.

wheels within wheels.

33. Hair Club for Men - 26 April 2008

What do people think about the fact that 2 of the accused cops in the Sean Bell case are black?

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/House_nigger

34. Hair Club for Men - 26 April 2008

Philip Giraldi reports that Israeli sources have indicated to him that the recent leak to the FBI about the new-old Israeli spy case came from inside the Israeli government toward the end of thwarting Ehud Olmert, Dick Cheney and the War Party’s plans to expand the Middle Eastern slaughter to Iran

Heh. Did Seymour Hersch run out of unattributed insider sources at the Pentagon or something :)

35. marisacat - 26 April 2008

and that there are more spies to be revealed…

tell them to fucking hurry up.

36. Madman in the Marketplace - 26 April 2008

Chicago: the Stupid Experiment

“This stupid experiment of organizing work and failing to organize play has, of course, brought about a fine revenge,” wrote Addams in 1909, pre-dating by a full decade the better known thesis of Freud’s Civilization and Its Discontents. Adults were damming up their own “sweet fountains” of pleasure, “but almost worse than the restrictive measures is our apparent belief that the city has no obligation in the matter, an assumption upon which the modern city turns over to commercialism practically all the provisions for public recreation.”

Public recreation? “Only in the modern city have men concluded that it is no longer necessary for the municipality to provide for the insatiable desire for play.” SWAT teams and jobs programs are what headlines call for today; more “restrictive measures” and “organizing work.” According to the Addams formula, these can only add up to another “fine revenge.”

Cromwell’s Puritan dictatorship stripped communal life of adornment and joy, recalls Addams. Then the liquor stores stepped in. As a result, people in the modern Anglo city work to make money, then spend their money buying liquor.

[snip]

As the pleasure intensity of adult play grew, so did the distance between adult society and children. Is the Playboy mansion the kind of place one brings actual boys? Communal festivals used to be different, argues Addams, where adults and children could dance together. If children obviously get lost in this new industrialized strandedness, adults also fail to find refreshment from an authentic “spirit of youth.”

Everyone fails to listen to the one voice capable of instructing Socrates. It was Diotima, recalls Addams, who said that love is an attempt to give birth to beauty. There is an essential lesson here for any republic that wants to be something besides ugly. When we have come to a crisis where men chase killer kids with SWAT teams and jobs, it may be time to follow the example of Socrates. There is a woman here talking about city-centered love and joy. Shut up and learn.

37. Madman in the Marketplace - 26 April 2008

I think a link went to spam.

38. Madman in the Marketplace - 26 April 2008
39. Madman in the Marketplace - 26 April 2008
40. Madman in the Marketplace - 26 April 2008

IIRC, somebody here linked to some stuff about raw milk. You might find this interesting:

Schmidt had risen that morning at 4 a.m. He milked his cows and ate breakfast. He loaded up a delivery, then fired up the bus. But as he reached the end of the driveway, two cars moved in to block his path. A police officer stepped into the road and raised his hand. Another ran to the bus and banged on the door. Others were close behind. Eventually twenty-four officers from five different agencies would search the farm. Many of them carried guns.

“The farm basically flooded, from everywhere came these people,” Schmidt later told me in his lilting German accent. “It looked like the Russian army coming, all these men with earflap hats.”

The process of heating milk to kill bacteria has been common for nearly a century, and selling unpasteurized milk for human consumption is currently illegal in Canada and in half the U.S. states. Yet thousands of people in North America still seek raw milk. Some say milk in its natural state keeps them healthy; others just crave its taste. Schmidt operates one of the many black-market networks that supply these raw-milk enthusiasts.

Schmidt showed men in biohazard suits around his barn, both annoyed and amused by the absurdity of the situation. The government had known that he was producing raw milk for at least a dozen years, yet an officer was now informing him that they would be seizing all the “unpasteurized product” and shuttling it to the University of Guelph for testing.

41. Victor Laszlo - 26 April 2008

#22:

I doff my Sociology hat for a moment to point out that often times those of us who blog may forget to contemplate our own classism and elitism, which is just as destructive a force as racism or economic disparities.

Uh, “doffing” means taking off. You “don” a hat when you put it on. I’m a fedora wearer, so I “don” hats many times a day.

My friends Merriam and Webster will vouch for me in this regard.

Are English not the first mangleuage for blawgers?

As for returning from the hospital with a “reformed viewpoint”: the only thing I learned from my recent hospital stay was that hospitals are cold, drafty, decidedly inhospitable places. And really, what cafeteria still feeds people Jell-O?

42. Victor Laszlo - 26 April 2008

Madman @ #40:

So much for the theory that Canadians are saner than their Southern cousins. The first graf is the first of many hoots:

A team from the Ministry of Natural Resources had been watching Schmidt for months, shadowing him on his weekly runs to Toronto. Two officers had even infiltrated the farmer’s inner circle, obtaining for themselves samples of his product. Lab tests confirmed their suspicions. It was raw milk. The unpasteurized stuff. Now the time had come to take him down.

Put down the cookies and milk, and back away from the platter. I want to see hands! Get down! Down on the ground!

At least the Canadian cops didn’t shoot Mr. Schmidt 50 times and then execute his cows. I assume the cops hoof-printed the entire herd and took DNA samples of the milk so they can submit it to Interpol, in case the dairy farmer in question has been shipping his “white substance” internationally. My God, do you know they sell this “milk” stuff to SCHOOLCHILDREN?

Won’t someone PLEASE think of the children…

I hope they have Mr. Schmidt’s trial very soon. I can’t imagine the evidence room has a large refrigerated section. Or can you send a man to prison on the basis of curdled milk?

43. Victor Laszlo - 26 April 2008

The second graf in #42 is my embellishment, not from the story. Sorry, medication mixed with coffee mixed with a sleepless night does not make for a coherent blog post.

44. marisacat - 26 April 2008

I think they keep Jell-O in hospitals as it is literally the only safe thing in a dangerous place. From intake to streeting. ONLY trust the Jell-O

45. marisacat - 26 April 2008

43

BTW VL

glad to see you survived the hospital… ;)

46. Madman in the Marketplace - 26 April 2008

Oh so silly when the god botherers start slap fighting with each other

In 1952, when Harry Truman called for a National Day of Prayer, now celebrated annually on the first Thursday of May, it was meant to encourage Americans of all faiths to pray with one another in whatever way felt best to them. It would be an ecumenical celebration of faith that would draw people together in common religious and spiritual contemplation. One can only imagine what Truman would think of this year’s event, the planning for which has been marred by bitter squabbling over who should be allowed to participate.

Shirley Dobson, wife of James Dobson, the conservative founder of Focus on the Family, is this year’s chairperson of the National Day of Prayer Task Force, a non-governmental organization based in Focus on the Family’s offices in Colorado Springs and charged with organizing various events. According to Jay Keller, national field director of the Interfaith Alliance, Dobson has made a point of “excluding Jews, Muslims, Catholics, Buddhists, and even mainline Christians” from the National Day of Prayer.

Thanks to Dobson, this year’s task force volunteers are required to sign pledges, stating: “I commit that NDP activities I serve with will be conducted solely by Christians while those of differing beliefs are welcome to attend.” Volunteers must also affirm that they “believe that the Holy Bible is the inerrant Word of The Living God” and that “Jesus Christ is the Son of God and the only One by which I can obtain salvation and have an ongoing relationship with God.” Such oaths violate the non-sectarian nature of the National Day of Prayer and clearly align “a government-sponsored event with a particular Christian denomination, in violation of the basic provisions of the First Amendment to the Constitution,” says Keller.

Can you feel the godly love?

47. cad - 26 April 2008

I personally have had nothing but great experiences with police — one even saved my life by waking us up to a fire he just happened to smell driving by until he found the apartment.

Even when I went to NY two years ago and gleefully ran through the subway turnstile without a ticket and was busted, the police were nice and let me off — I met a guy later that day who was taken to jail for the same thing. But I’ve been lucky so far.

48. Victor Laszlo - 26 April 2008

#45–Thanks. Is there a hospital where you can recover from your stay in the hospital?

49. Madman in the Marketplace - 26 April 2008

A Snapshot of Race in America

A white man in a serious run for the presidency–Same old story.

A black man in a serious run for the presidency–Once in a lifetime event.

An innocent black man shot and killed by police; police acquitted–Same old story.

An innocent white man shot and killed by police; police acquitted–Once in a lifetime event.

50. Madman in the Marketplace - 26 April 2008

It’s weird that what little resistance in the media that manages to bubble up shows up in dramedy shows.

51. marisacat - 26 April 2008

46

well afaiac, it is all about money. With all of them but the tiny tiny number who UNHERALDED work the streets with the poor or in prisons with the utterly trapped.

The rest can die imo.

52. liberalcatnip - 26 April 2008

Still catching up here. NYCO, if you send me those kossack tidbits with links when you find them, I can post them at Mo Betta. It’s been slow over there and we could use some fun stuff. ;) Click on my name for my e-mail address on my page.

53. Madman in the Marketplace - 26 April 2008

Letters Give C.I.A. Tactics a Legal Rationale

WASHINGTON — The Justice Department has told Congress that American intelligence operatives attempting to thwart terrorist attacks can legally use interrogation methods that might otherwise be prohibited under international law.

The legal interpretation, outlined in recent letters, sheds new light on the still-secret rules for interrogations by the Central Intelligence Agency. It shows that the administration is arguing that the boundaries for interrogations should be subject to some latitude, even under an executive order issued last summer that President Bush said meant that the C.I.A. would comply with international strictures against harsh treatment of detainees.

While the Geneva Conventions prohibit “outrages upon personal dignity,” a letter sent by the Justice Department to Congress on March 5 makes clear that the administration has not drawn a precise line in deciding which interrogation methods would violate that standard, and is reserving the right to make case-by-case judgments.

“The fact that an act is undertaken to prevent a threatened terrorist attack, rather than for the purpose of humiliation or abuse, would be relevant to a reasonable observer in measuring the outrageousness of the act,” said Brian A. Benczkowski, a deputy assistant attorney general, in the letter, which had not previously been made public.

Mr. Bush issued the executive order last summer to comply with restrictions imposed by the Supreme Court and Congress. The order spelled out new standards for interrogation techniques, requiring that they comply with international standards for humane treatment, but it did not identify any approved techniques.

54. liberalcatnip - 26 April 2008

So much for the theory that Canadians are saner than their Southern cousins.

You’ve definitely never heard that from me! :)

55. marisacat - 26 April 2008

Hit the brakes! It’s wall to wall whackos! No escape!

56. moiv - 26 April 2008

Evening, all …

Tonight Bush is (once again) wowing the house at the Annual WH Correspondents’ Dinner, commenting on the absence of any of the presidential candidates:

“Senator McCain isn’t here this evening. It’s entirely understandable that he might want to distance himself from me a little bit. The Democratic candidates aren’t here, either. Senator Clinton couldn’t get into the building because of sniper fire, and Senator Obama’s at church.”

57. Hair Club for Men - 26 April 2008

noom = Ender

On Friday, Ender remarks that he’s going to Florida.

http://politicalfleshfeast.com/showComment.do?commentId=88957

Well, I would love to do some “citizen journalism”, so to speak, for you, but unfortunately I am flying out to FL later today and got some work to do until then. Otherwise I’d be there.

The next Noom posts a diary about being in a cab in South Florida (something you might do after you get off a plane).

http://www.politicalfleshfeast.com/showDiary.do?diaryId=2963

58. marisacat - 26 April 2008

LOL McCain got off easy.

The other two got their scripts handed to them…
:)

59. marisacat - 26 April 2008

noom/Moon has always sounded so different, at least as I recall, from Ender.

BTW, I just read that diary of kraant’s on the Wright appearance. And notied that Donkeytale – in the thread – is now also pushing RELIGION.

Really an odd entity that one.

60. Hair Club for Men - 26 April 2008

noom/Moon has always sounded so different, at least as I recall, from Ender

Pff isn’t a high traffic site.

OK let’s think logically

Ender and Noom both live in NYC

Ender and Noom both hate Arabs and support Israel

Ender is flying to Florida on Friday

Noom arrives in Florida on Saturday

WAT R the odds that on a site of 600 registered and maybe 20 active users that there would be two NYC dwelling Israel supporting assholes who just happen to be flying from NYC to Florida on the same day?

61. marisacat - 26 April 2008

oh not saying it is not possible. I mean, what do I know.

The most I ever read Ender, actually, was at the Crossed Swords (or whatever euphemism as used) that Armando had. He always seemed wooden, stolid. Dull. Noom seems a lot more flexible.

Noom just seems a fucking nutter, pro Israel and whatever esle. So many reactionaries at PFF.

62. moiv - 26 April 2008

59

Major Disarray has the best comment in that thread, in response to a mention of the Sky Fairy.

It’s a Great Name (0.00 / 0)
Sky Fairy In Flight.

If someone does not scarf it up,

I’ll adopt it, and add it to my thoroughbred stable of sock puppets.

Can hardly wait for the time when I see SFIF, Afternoon Delight, and my little gelding, Obamawhina, win at Pimlico.

Big Payoff, a trefacta after all.

by Major Disarray @ Sat Apr 26, 2008 at 18:32:39 PM CDT

63. marisacat - 26 April 2008

wow, kudos to Disarray… that is excellent.

64. marisacat - 26 April 2008

FINALLY I hear something of value on SF ”Liberal” Radio… apparently, what a shock, record numbers of electrical shut offs for non pay.

65. moiv - 26 April 2008

64

That’s why I so hope for a mild summer in North Texas. Elderly people in high crime areas can’t afford to run their air conditioners (if they even have them) and are afraid to leave their windows open at night. After a few days of 100-degree days and 90-degree nights, they start dying of heat exhaustion.

This is always the case, but this year it could be much worse.

66. marisacat - 26 April 2008

hmm there seem to be some media scenarios developing. That easily could be one of them.

Of course we get heat waves in spurts, tho recent summers are warmer than years past. They are fairly efficient here distributing relief, fans, air conditions, iced water or opening various facilities if need be.

We’ll see. Loss of service to a home is just deadly. And the laws (or regs) regarding shut off of power, or so I have read, have gotten easier in some areas.

67. wu ming - 26 April 2008

i remember that power outage in the summer of 96, and the rolling blackouts courtesy of enron in ’01. just for a day, it sucks but you can deal if you know how to take cold showers and stuff.

but getting your power cut for good is close to murder in places with infernally hot summers. ditto for cutting off the heat in the winter in cold climates.

68. Madman in the Marketplace - 27 April 2008

Only a very sick society would require this:

When the Police Say, ‘Stop’

A SCORE of teenagers from Bedford-Stuyvesant were slumped in their swivel chairs Wednesday night when Noel Leader, a retired police sergeant. and Keith Sainten, a police detective who was off duty, asked for volunteers. A few eagerly raised their hands.

“This’ll be a hostile car stop,” Mr. Sainten said, instructing two of the boys to imagine they were sitting in a flashy Escalade that had just been pulled over to the curb. “What I want you to do is give them lip. You’re not going to flail your hands. You’re just going to be angry because you’re tired of getting stopped.”

Mr. Leader selected two other volunteers to portray police officers. He placed dark blue police caps atop their cornrow braids and do-rags, dressed them in blue mesh police vests and handed them toy cap guns. They were dispatched to the pretend window of the pretend vehicle.

“License and registration, please,” one of the mock police officers said in his best television-inspired police imitation.

The faux passengers responded by shouting and howling insults.

“He didn’t run no red light, son!” one of them hollered. “It was yellow!”

Another chimed in: “Yo, my mom’s on the phone! She want to speak with you right now!”

The room erupted in giggles, but the exercise, part of a workshop for young people on how to behave when stopped by the police, had its serious side.

The sponsoring organization, 100 Blacks in Law Enforcement Who Care, has often been critical of the Police Department.

Not criticizing 100 Blacks … it’s just sick that it’s NECESSARY, and even more sick that no one feels the need to sit a bunch of suburban kids down like that.

69. marisacat - 27 April 2008

hmmm .. well we know what the pattern is now. My guess when it happened, Bloomberg and Kelly both sighed with relief that two of the cops were black.

I just read today’s “the day after” NYT take on how it goes down in Queens. Very patronising. Basically, those little black people, they are SO grown up now! They understand nuance. The cop’s job is difficult. Things happen. We need to take care of our police. … what was that about overkill? Again?

I am not overstating the article.

And the most prominent black in the nation is very busy. As is the senator from NY. And the other one, touring poor, mostly black forgotten communities. Good for photo ops tho.

I did just finish reading a 1995 Chicago Reader article on his first run.

70. Victor Laszlo - 27 April 2008

Marisacat, my Donkeytale theory is that Donkeytale is a corporate entity at this point: more than one person is using that name. Definitely a political operative, whether paid or unpaid. Definitely strange behavior, to say the least: went from being a total cynic to being an evangelist for Obama. Smells like a bait-and-switch to me.

71. Victor Laszlo - 27 April 2008

Oh, and I don’t know that much about this Ender, but if Ender/noom/Moon are all one person with different writing styles, it’s also possible that person is a corporate entity. Even Kos doesn’t write everything with his own byline.

Everyone is familiar with the theory that a thousand monkeys typing randomly on a thousand typewriters for a thousand years would eventually produce “Hamlet”, right?

My theory is that Kos just has the one monkey with a laptop and posts its daily output.

Can we report this man for animal cruelty?

72. marisacat - 27 April 2008

70

Victor, I agree… when I reopened the threads last summer after shutting them for 3 weeks, I banned him. Calling him “paid astroturf”.

I had watched him thru a couple of blogs… Booman Tribune where he made himself a split personality hysteric of sorts, many screen names, etc… and at an alternative site he was invited to post at… I forget the site’s name by now. it shut, I think bedeviled by spammers and DoS attacks, again iirc.

I am not in favor of banning, but he established himself here as “fourtitz” iirc… and i felt we were headed for mayhem.

To watch him move to hard political driving (well of a sort) and now to push religion… gah.

Screw him.

73. Hair Club for Men - 27 April 2008

Oh, and I don’t know that much about this Ender, but if Ender/noom/Moon are all one person with different writing styles

Same person.

Friday Ender casually mentions that he’s going to Florida.

http://politicalfleshfeast.com/showComment.do?commentId=88957

On Saturday Noom posts a diary in his usual on crack style saying that he was taking a cab in south Florida.

http://www.politicalfleshfeast.com/showDiary.do?diaryId=2963

Both Noom and Ender have remarked in the past that they live in NYC. Ender leaves NYC on Friday with the intention of going to Florida and Noom posts a diary saying he was in a cab in South Florida the next day.

Remember, Ender just casually dropped that remark in a comment (and comments can’t be edited).

OF COURSE they’re the same person.

Now it’s possible that “Ender” is an open account the Hasbara e-mail list uses also or that they’re boyfriend and girlfriend or boyfriend and boyfriend but the idea that there are two belligerent, right wing pro Israel jerks out of 20 or 25 people who just happen to leave NYC and arrive in South Florida on the same day beggers credability.

And what it means is that Ender has never been banned on the Daily Kos. He’s got at least one confirmed sock puppet in Noom and probably more.

So much for the high and might talk about how “Shergold” was only banned because he/she used sockpuppets.

74. melvin - 27 April 2008

Everybody’s invited up to my place for drinks, say 3ish.

Watch your step, I haven’t gotten around to repairing the pathway in a while.

75. melvin - 27 April 2008

70 There is a coal industry group infesting the threads to A Siegel’s diaries at satan, ABEC I think it’s dkos name is, quite openly.

76. liberalcatnip - 27 April 2008

73. Didn’t Ender write a mea culpa diary at dkos and ask everybody to vote on whether he should be banned or not? Talk about special treatment.

Regardless of who he is or which name he posts under, he’s still boring.

Having a pain-filled weekend here. Must be my cheesecake deficiency acting up again.

77. JJB - 27 April 2008

George Bush put in his usual, dignified appearance at the White House Correspondents Dinner last night:

President Bush poked fun at his potential successors Saturday night, expressing surprise that none of them were in the audience at the White House Correspondents’ Association annual dinner.

“Senator McCain’s not here,” Bush said of GOP nominee-in-waiting John McCain. “He probably wanted to distance himself from me a little bit. You know, he’s not alone. Jenna’s moving out too.”

Bush then referred to scandals that have dogged the campaigns of the two remaining Democratic candidates, Hillary Rodham Clinton and Barack Obama, in explaining their absence: “Hillary Clinton couldn’t get in because of sniper fire and Senator Obama’s at church.”

[snip]

The president admitted to being “a little wistful” in his final appearance at the dinner, showing video clips of his routines from previous years. He finished by conducting the U.S. Marine Band in a medley of patriotic marches.

I saw video of that conducting performance and the jokes on the local NBC affiliate’s news program this morning. What this MSNBC story doesn’t mention is that the jokes about Billary and Obamarama produced audible groans of disapproval from the audience. The video I saw cut off the sound to obscure this fact, but they arose so spontaneously from the audience there was no way to completely obscure them without cutting off the end of Bush’s joke. Also, he looked and sounded very drunk. Between this and that ludicrous appearance on “Deal Or No Deal,” I’d say he’s given up even pretending he’s performing his duties as POTUS, and given himself over to self-indulgence for the remainder of his term.

Re sockpuppets, well, dKos has always been rotten with them. My favorite was the loser from Boston who not only used his multiple identities to rate up his own comments, but would actually respond to his own comments, carrying on a 3-way dialogue with himself. Someone who’d received one too many unjustified zeros from him finally complained, and sure enough, all 3 were found to be using the same IP address.

78. JJB - 27 April 2008

The mayor of Kabul survived yet another assassination attempt. It doesn’t seem like this one came all that close to killing him, but the fact that it could happen under what I presume were conditions of the highest security presence (an official celebration of the 16th anniversary of the fall of the old Communist regime) is alarming, to say the least.

79. JJB - 27 April 2008

Two comments in moderation/spam, I think.

80. liberalcatnip - 27 April 2008

A preview of Obama on FAUX:

Wallace said that if Obama had won Pennsylvania he may not have accepted the FOX News Sunday invitation. But he said that once Obama met him for the interview, the Illinois senator was “friendly” and discussed several moderate-to-Republican viewpoints, making an apparent effort to broaden his appeal.

“He made it very clear he was not some left … liberal and he had been mischaracterized as such,” Wallace said. “I think this was an effort to sort of restore or regain the brand that he had some months ago, when he was saying there wasn’t a Republican solution, or a Democratic solution. It was a new politics and it needed to be a coalition.”

Why are Dems so afraid to use their power? That reminds me of Begala’s quote about the way the Dem primaries are run – make sure everybody gets a trophy so you can look fair-minded. Well, when your country is falling apart and if you win back the WH, screw the trophies for the Repubs. They definitely don’t deserve any.

81. marisacat - 27 April 2008

JJB out of moderation spam… Sorry! for the delay……….

8)

82. Victor Laszlo - 27 April 2008

Why are Dems so afraid to use their power?

They’re both working for the same bosses, that’s why. Democrats don’t say “boo” without getting approval. Obama and Clinton and Pelosi and the rest of them know the rules and the limits.

And so the nation stumbles towards an election that nobody seems to really want and that will change nothing and confirm every worst fear we have about the disgraceful degeneration of American civic and political life.

83. Madman in the Marketplace - 27 April 2008

Gin, Television, and Social Surplusa

I was recently reminded of some reading I did in college, way back in the last century, by a British historian arguing that the critical technology, for the early phase of the industrial revolution, was gin.

The transformation from rural to urban life was so sudden, and so wrenching, that the only thing society could do to manage was to drink itself into a stupor for a generation. The stories from that era are amazing– there were gin pushcarts working their way through the streets of London.

And it wasn’t until society woke up from that collective bender that we actually started to get the institutional structures that we associate with the industrial revolution today. Things like public libraries and museums, increasingly broad education for children, elected leaders–a lot of things we like–didn’t happen until having all of those people together stopped seeming like a crisis and started seeming like an asset.

It wasn’t until people started thinking of this as a vast civic surplus, one they could design for rather than just dissipate, that we started to get what we think of now as an industrial society.

If I had to pick the critical technology for the 20th century, the bit of social lubricant without which the wheels would’ve come off the whole enterprise, I’d say it was the sitcom. Starting with the Second World War a whole series of things happened–rising GDP per capita, rising educational attainment, rising life expectancy and, critically, a rising number of people who were working five-day work weeks. For the first time, society forced onto an enormous number of its citizens the requirement to manage something they had never had to manage before–free time.

And what did we do with that free time? Well, mostly we spent it watching TV.

We did that for decades. We watched I Love Lucy. We watched Gilligan’s Island. We watch Malcolm in the Middle. We watch Desperate Housewives. Desperate Housewives essentially functioned as a kind of cognitive heat sink, dissipating thinking that might otherwise have built up and caused society to overheat.

And it’s only now, as we’re waking up from that collective bender, that we’re starting to see the cognitive surplus as an asset rather than as a crisis. We’re seeing things being designed to take advantage of that surplus, to deploy it in ways more engaging than just having a TV in everybody’s basement.

84. Madman in the Marketplace - 27 April 2008

Watching Wolfie and his panel discuss Reverend Wright. Stupid, stupid … tut-tutting over how Wright is hurting Obama. Doesn’t even occur to them that he might be doing it because Obama’s distancing HURT HIM w/ the African American community. Of course, the AA community doesn’t occur to them at all unless there is a violent crime involved.

Plainly the lower-than-expected turnout in Philadelphia in the AA community put a scare into them, and they need a big turnout in NC and in northern Indiana and in NC.

Anyway, all disgusted w/ Wright, but they LOVE them some Dubya at the correspondence dinner. They thought he was funny. They loved the conducting thing.

85. Madman in the Marketplace - 27 April 2008

melvin … you’re nuts!

86. marisacat - 27 April 2008

well “violent crime” in the AA community (and any crime that has a handy archived mug shot of the suspect) is, even more than normal, a rising scenario for the MSM cable. it seems to me that Chicago SOUTH SIDE issues are being nationally profiled with some regularity. They have had sprres of killings lately, but so have WE… and I don’t think we got the national profile that SS Chicago got… Daley did do a presser the other day, yelled and moaned and shook his finger at everyone…

All the R have to do is cue a string of R mayors and cooperating D mayors to signal High Concern about [increasing[] black crime… and whammo. We are there.

We have had a series of bad armed robberies in 7 or 8 Oakland restaurants, several men in hoodies walk into neighborhood establishments large enough to have collected some dinner time cash and they carry serious weapons. Reataurant till as well as individual customers are robbed. They have picked up a couple of suspects…

It’s being pointed out, in some cases by white media, that this got a much quicker response from Oakland cops (a famous bunch) than do killings in the poor neighborhoods. The big ol’ mean Oakland cops are famous for fading away from their jobs..

Its April now, they have the summer to build this. And it won’t even be noticeable as coverage creeps up.

87. marisacat - 27 April 2008

ugh the sit com. Always hated them. And soap operas AND game shows. Knocked out a lot of TV but for news and forms of murder (always an interest!), in policier or other sorts of crime or spy shows, movies…

88. marisacat - 27 April 2008

melvin 74

I jsut tried again… (tried hours ago when you posted the link) and i get the page and your entry, but a big blank spot. I tried print friendly version, same thing. Big blank spot…

…?

89. marisacat - 27 April 2008

here is the transcript to the, as Halperin calls it, newsless obama appearance on FOX.

The usual in two instances… Per Obama, the governmnet has the right to limit late term abortion (which is forbidden in Roe, they all make Roe seem like some radical permissive thing. It was not) in reference to ‘PBA”. Not to worry honey chile!. The SC banned ‘partial birth abortion’. An oftentimes MID term often preferred medical procedure.

On partial birth abortion, I strongly believe that the state can properly restrict late-term abortions. I have said so repeatedly. All I’ve said is we should have a provision to protect the health of the mother. And many of the bills that came before me didn’t have that.

Now part of the reason they didn’t have it was purposeful, because those who are opposed to abortion, and I don’t begrudge that at all, they have a moral calling to try to oppose what they think is immoral, oftentimes what they are trying to do was to polarize the debate and make it more difficult for people so that they could try to bring an end abortions overall.

Always a kind word the extreme moral conscience of the pro lifers.

Same old same old party bullshite.

The other CW he shoveled out, as parsed by EJ Dionne and Bob Speer: Martin was more “jarring” in his speech at Riverside Church than Wright. And that jarring language of Martin’s rose from the pain of the past.

So I don’t want to exaggerate this notion that somehow he was on the soapbox each and every day. But the important point, though, that I tried to make in Philadelphia is that some of this is generational. I mean some of it is – he went through experiences that I never went through. I’m the beneficiary of the civil rights movement.

People I think noted that, if you run back some of Dr. King’s speeches, we always play “I have a dream,” but if you look at his sermon in Riverside church for example, when he spoke out fiercely against the Vietnam war, there’s some pretty jarring comments there as well. And part of it has to do with a very specific experience, a generation that was raised under Jim Crow, saw a lot of violence, saw a lot of racial discrimination.

I have a different experience and in part have a much more hopeful vision of where America has been and where it can go in the future.

BULLFUCKINGSHIT. Martin attacked the government as an entity that would further empire – and racist war for empire, SPECIFICALLY to cut people off at HOME.

IMO Wright winds up his middle class audience. Winds up the collection plate. Big difference. And another difference, I doubt Martin would have SOLD Obama from the pulpit as a “Black Liberator”. That was the thrust (and Wright used those words) of the big speech in Jan or Feb, the “ridin’ dirty” one. Who cares what he says about Bill and Hillary. But he sold Obama as a black liberator. Oh spare me.

What a waste it all is.

As EE gets on her high horse in the NYT to sell the lousy bullshtie medical plans. She pans the crap the media follows. When the fucking candidates get real, and they NEVER WILL, then blame media. I am sure EE has heard the same comments as in the The Hill article I posted. How the Dems in congress plan to do NOTHING about health care. A little more to SChip and basta.

Such slop they all lob. ALL OF THEM.

90. Arcturus - 27 April 2008

86. Pretty sure my favorite U.S. District Court Judge, Thelton Henderson, also (in addition to the CA prison medical system) has some sort of oversight over the OPD?

I’ve had this in storage for a bit (from last Oct), seems appropriate:

The area also has had a 2 percent increase in burglaries, a 9 percent increase in residential robberies, a 1 percent rise in commercial robberies and a 62 percent rise in carjackings, while auto burglaries have fallen by 26 percent and auto thefts are down by 12 percent, said Paul Rose, Dellums’ spokesman.

After Dellums heard speakers talk of murders and other crimes that have occurred, he told the audience of more than 200: “I am serious about crime and violence, and I’m so serious that I’m saying let’s don’t play games with each other, folks.

“When crime and violence were constrained to the barrios and the ghettos and the ‘hoods, people didn’t pay any attention.” But he said when crime became a citywide problem, “we’re all concerned about it.”

“This is not just a question about police,” the 71-year-old mayor said. “We have to do the best we can, and I’m absolutely and unequivocally committed to do that. But at the same time, I have lived long enough to know we have closed our eyes to the injustices and inequities, and now we are reaping the wild winds of that disregard for a whole range of people.”

He recalled that he was chair of a commission that looked “at the plight of young men of color in this country … who we are grinding up like glass.” To deal with crime, he said, those people have to be given jobs, training, better education and opportunities.

. . . He noted that every year 3,000 people are released from prison to the streets of Oakland, and it is not enough to give them $200 as they exit the prison gate.

Still, he’s largely about hiring more cops as far as I can tell.

And the cop who tased 20 y/o Gary King Jr. [suspected of having info (?) p'haps being a suspect in a murder (? I forget which)], pulled his pants down in a scuffle on the sidwewalk, and as the kid ran away pulling up his pants was taken as ‘reaching for a weapon,’ shot him in the back, still patrols the streets

91. marisacat - 27 April 2008

well I am not a fan of Dellums. For one thing, been around too long. And now he likely is going to play the swtich jobs to avoid term limiting out, the game they all play here.

He failed massively in the garbage strike last year. Unavailable to the media (and not forcing mediation between the parties, either), then he surfaces to do a standard play to the bedroom communities, a big slam at streetwalkers and a send up of the cops doing undercover. GMAFB. No word, at all on the suppurating strike.

THEN it surfaced both he and Barbara Lee had intervened in the past to assist Your Black Muslim Bakery. A thug organisation if ever there was one.

Dellums has given speeches and done walk ons for far too long.

92. Arcturus - 27 April 2008

possibly naive (?) but I can’t imagine MLK buying a million $ home. Collection plate or no, I was impressed by the passionate response of the Sept. 16 sermon Moyers showed.

93. marisacat - 27 April 2008

Martin and Wright got very different retirement plans.

94. Arcturus - 27 April 2008

Interesting, I’d heard of police intervention/protection of YBMB, but not the political.

Speeches (some great ones in DC back in the day) & walkons. Yup.

95. Arcturus - 27 April 2008

93. the ‘jarring’ effect

96. melvin - 27 April 2008

88 — Are you using internet explorer? I forgot sometimes there is a problem between it, the blog, and videos.

Try here, maybe.

97. marisacat - 27 April 2008

melvin

I used Mozilla Foxfire… I will try AOL… and your link… thanks.

98. marisacat - 27 April 2008

94

they both wrote letters, on official stationary, to the Bankruptcy Court, to the judge, advocating for YBMB and the family (cannot think of the name of the family at the moment).

Yes I heard of the cops fading from the scene if there was a whiff that violence or thuggery might be the work of YBMB.

99. Madman in the Marketplace - 27 April 2008
100. Madman in the Marketplace - 27 April 2008

Fuck Obama and his coddling of misogynist, homophobic superstitious nuts.

101. Hair Club for Men - 27 April 2008

Saw “Standard Operating Procedure.”

It continually freaks me out that one of the torturers and I went to the same high school only a few years apart.

102. Hair Club for Men - 27 April 2008

Why are Dems so afraid to use their power? They’re both working for the same bosses, that’s why.

Yes. The Republicans own the mall and man the upper level management positions. The Democrats are the customer service. It’s their job to make sure the difficult customers don’t complain too much and continue to spend money.

Or look at it in terms of an ISP. Ever work tech support for an ISP? You can only do so much for the poor sap on the other end of the line. If the systems engineer doens’t feel like logging onto the router until the next day, he’s screwed. But it’s your job to keep the customers from leaving.

103. Hair Club for Men - 27 April 2008

Not much protest or outrage in the city over Sean Bell. I think the largest rally came to about 300.

104. Hair Club for Men - 27 April 2008

73. Didn’t Ender write a mea culpa diary at dkos and ask everybody to vote on whether he should be banned or not? Talk about special treatment

Well the issue is that Hunter banned Shergold (and a whole crowd of other people) because Shergold was supposedly using sockpuppets.

But since Ender has now been outed as Noom, it’s also clear that Ender was never banned from the Daily Kos, that he’s allowed to harass Kos users with a belligerent, mananic abusively racist alter ego with no consequences at all.

And essentially it means Kos and the inner circle at Kos have some sort of a deal with Ender and Red State that they’re secretely allowed to harass Kos’s users (since “Noom’s” persona is obviously meant to intimidate “liberals” who work for non-profits, in the education sector, etc.)

I guess that Chevron money came at a price.

105. Madman in the Marketplace - 27 April 2008

Obama throws Kos under the bus

OBAMA: No, look, I think this is fair. I would point out, though, for example, that when I voted for a tort reform measure that was fiercely opposed by the trial lawyers, I got attacked pretty hard from the left.

During the Roberts –

WALLACE: John Roberts, Supreme Court.

OBAMA: John Roberts nomination, although I voted against him, I strongly defended some of my colleagues who had voted for him on the Daily Kos, and was fiercely attacked [clutches pearls] as somebody who is, you know, caving in to Republicans on these fights.

106. Hair Club for Men - 27 April 2008

I strongly defended some of my colleagues who had voted for him on the Daily Kos

Heh. It reads like Obama’s colleagues are actually voting ON the Daily Kos, maybe uprating pro John Robert’s posts or something.

107. Madman in the Marketplace - 27 April 2008

‘Cuz Blacks Are Too Fuckin’ Broke To Be Republican

At last count, Barack Obama has publicly repudiated Jeremiah Wright, Jesse Jackson, Louis Farrakhan, Idi Amin, Robert Mugabe, Wayne Williams, Michael Jackson, and the entire starting five of the 1966 Texas Western basketball team. But is that enough? Aw hellz naw, says Evan Gahr at Human Events. Sure, there’s a horrible war, and the economy is in the toilet, and no one can afford health care, and gas rationing and food riots are just around the corner, but what’s foremost in Evan’s mind? In order to even be considered for leadership of the free world, Obama must denounce all rappers:

Although the media has finally exposed Barack Obama’s ties to the unhinged pastor his support from rappers who propagate equally pernicious nonsense has gone almost entirely unnoticed.

108. marisacat - 27 April 2008

nuuu threddddddd…………………… 8)

LINK

109. marisacat - 27 April 2008

105

he’s an appeaser.

I hope it is a different bus than White Grannie got. She shouldn’t have to share tread marks with KosFreaks.

110. Arcturus - 27 April 2008

98. Bey, I believe.

111. marisacat - 27 April 2008

that’s right, it is Bey. Thanks.


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