Do you dread opening your daily newspaper and internet news source each morning like I do? Ferguson, Wilmington, Iraq, Syria, Afghanistan and countless other hotbeds of conflict, hate and destruction. And America is at the center of it all.
On August 7th I wondered aloud what kind of chaos a GOP controlled Senate would unleash on the nation. There is no longer any need to wonder. Senate Minority Leader and soon to be Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell is very candid about the mayhem he is going to sow.
Interviewed by Politico aboard his campaign bus, the Senate minority leader offered his vision for the Senate should he be promoted to majority leader: confrontation, manufactured crises, and the ever-present threat of a government shutdown:
In an extensive interview here, the typically reserved McConnell laid out his clearest thinking yet of how he would lead the Senate if Republicans gain control of the chamber. The emerging strategy: Attach riders to spending bills that would limit Obama policies on everything from the environment to health care, consider using an arcane budget tactic to circumvent Democratic filibusters and force the president to “move to the center” if he wants to get any new legislation through Congress.
“Move to the center” is a clever euphemism for “pay ransom in exchange for hostages.” And I’m not putting words in anyone’s mouth here – back in 2011, McConnell was asked what lessons he learned from threatening to put the government in default in order to extract concessions from the White House, and he said the debt limit was “a hostage that’s worth ransoming.”
More Ferguson, to be filed in the Annals of Really Bad Policing — video of a cop in last night’s protests in Ferguson of a cop waving his weapon at peaceful protesters telling them that ” I will fucking kill you!” There are two videos here — one of the cop threatening the protester and a clearer one of the cop and the other cop who caught up to him to get him to lower his weapon. Seriously, this cop doesn’t look angry — he looks scared to death. In a group of people with their hands up (and often you can see the light of smartphones filming), folks. No wonder he didn’t want to give his name.
Matthew Yglesias at Vox brings up an important question. Above you’ll see a picture of Scott Olson, the Getty photographer who’s brought us many of the most striking images of protests and police crackdown that followed the shooting of Michael Brown. [Click on the link in my first sentence to see the picture] The other two men in the […]
Some on the left expect President Obama to wade into the Ferguson protests and demonstrations and condemn the police, to excuse the violence as justified and righteous, and take sides. Some expect a new Race Speech, like what he gave in Philadelphia during the 2008 campaign during the height of the Jeremiah Wright mess. I call bullshit on that. For a couple of reasons. First, he is the President, and as such he, as the head of the Federal Government, cannot bias any coming federal investigation or intervention with his own one sided views. Second, there is every indication that the election of President Obama was made race relations far worse in this country. It is not his fault, it is the fault of the racists. But far from isolating existing racists into further obscurity, the election of a black man as President was a Batman signal for all of the racists to let their freak flag fly. Racists, once embarrassed by admitting their racism, are now proud to. Because it is a sign of opposition to Obama, and because a legitimate political party embraced racism as an acceptable form of opposition to the President early on, even before his inauguration. So, knowing that, what can the President say that will not make the situation worse?
John Oliver takes on the militarization of the police as well as the serious lack of adult supervision in the Ferguson business. This is about 15 minutes long, but it is well worth it:
Mychal Denzel Smith writes about what matters in Ferguson, for we are in danger of losing sight of it due to continued stupid violence and looting, which of course feeds right into the county cops’ and the right wing’s narrative:
Michael Brown was shot and killed by an officer of the Ferguson, Missouri, police department. This is what matters.
The name of the officer has been released (it’s Darren Wilson, who has been on the force for six years), alongside allegations that Brown was involved in a robbery. This does not matter.
It doesn’t matter because people accused of robbery should not be shot. It doesn’t matter because people who put their hands up in surrender should not be shot. It doesn’t matter because a body should not lie in the streets for hours after being shot by a police officer.
Michael Brown was shot and killed by an officer of the Ferguson, Missouri, police department. Everything else is irrelevant.
Too bad some fucking idiot criminals have seen fit to embrace violence instead of nonviolence. Thank you for giving cover to the local police. Thank you for obscuring the story. Thank you for confirming all the biases against you. Fucking idiots.
Who could do it? Andrew Sabl at Samefacts asks this question, and sets up what any challenger to Hillary Clinton (presuming again that she is running) would need to look like:
The other day, I listened to a story from WHYY on Delaware legislators who get money fron casino interests. The report they referenced noticed the recent casino bailout and wanted to see if there was any clear connection to votes for the casino interests with contributions from those interests. They led with their conclusion: Legislators who supported Del. casino ‘bailout’ received more industry cash. Referencing a recent report from the Follow the Money website called Ante Up: Gambling and Casino Contributions in Delaware, they reported:
Love how Biden crosses himself when Williams gets wound up. And Jeff Gannon! Talk about a flashback:
Have you been following the #iftheygunnedmedown campaign? As the conversation has evolved this week about how Americans see its black men, it is black men (and women) who have taken to Twitter to ask the question: Which picture of me would the media and authorities use to represent me if I was gunned down by the police today? Here are a few of them:
The NJ released video today of conversation with Erika Benner with her explanation of the Patriots tickets. Click through for the video. As of this writing, there is the video, no other reporting by the NJ. The much rumored picture of Chip Flowers at the game is shown here. Benner claims that Flowers not only knew about the charge on her state card for these tickets, he told her the charge was allowable since they were doing some State business.
Copeland is really phoning it in, and why not? He doesn’t have any viable statewide candidates so why should he try to make an actual case for Republican governance? He has clearly decided to punt on this round of statewide and focus his energies on building for 2016. But he still has to make a show about caring, so while he hasn’t committed himself and the party to any coherent policies – he has chosen a campaign theme of sorts. That theme is a mild queasiness around the idea of “one-party rule” in Delaware.
This is just the latest iteration of the perfunctory messaging coming out of Greenville:
Today, we will review the state of play in the statewide races, which are our US Senator and Representative, as well as the Attorney General, Treasurer and Auditor. As is Delaware custom, we have overwhelmingly favored incumbents facing off against token or insane opposition, and then we have a game of musical chairs producing an unexpected race (Attorney General), a race between a tired incumbent who has overstayed his welcome and a young competent whippersnapper (Auditor), and
a vulnerable incumbent whose time in office has invited primary challenges on both sides of the aisle an open race between a competent Democrat, a Republican businessman, and a crazy person named after a singer and a South American country (Treasurer).
Then we move over to the State Senate, where the Democrats enjoy a 3 seat majority in the small chamber of 21 Senators (13 Democrats and 8 Republicans). Can the GOP take over the majority this fall?
Somebody get Deval Patrick on the phone. We have to warn him.
State Treasurer Chip Flowers has announced that he is ending his campaign for reelection and his moving to Massachusetts with his soon to be new wife once his term as Treasurer is over. He will not be resigning. This makes Sean Barney (D), the defacto Democratic nominee for Treasurer, and it likely ends all GOP designs on the office. I will leave it to others to describe the incredible press conference where these announcements were made, but needless to say another ommission of fact (or as we call them, lies) was revealed in that Chip did in fact attend that Patriots game, tickets to which were purchased on the state credit card. Like I have said before, I am tired, we are all tired, and now, Chip himself is tired. Best of luck, Mr. Flowers on your future endeavors in your new state.
I don’t believe this at all, given the current state of play and what we publicly know. So there must be another shoe about to drop.
Embattled State Treasurer Chip Flowers could resign after a former deputy accused him of harassment. Delaware Public Media contributor Jeff Mordock of Delaware Law Weekly reports sources tell him Flowers may step down as early as Friday and abandon his run for second term this fall. Reports of Flowers possible resignation come about a day after reports surfaced of former Deputy Treasurer Erika Benner filing harassment claims against her former boss.
In addition to seeing that justice is done in Ferguson – this 1033 program has got to go. It is really possible that in 2013 alone, the 1033 program has transferred $449 million in military equipment to police forces?
Yes. They brag about it on the 1033 Program webpage.
The Law Enforcement Support Office (LESO), the facilitators of 1033 program, originated from the National Defense Authorization Act of Fiscal Year 1997 (FY 97). This law allows for the office to transfer excess Department of Defense property to law enforcement agencies across the United States and its territories.
Since its inception, the 1033 program has transferred more than $4.3 billion worth of property. In 2013 alone, $449,309,003.71 worth of property was transferred to law enforcement.
If your law enforcement agency chooses to participate, it may become one of the more than 8,000 participating agencies to increase its capabilities, expand its patrol coverage, reduce response times, and save the American taxpayer’s investment