"Fatal Encounters - 'A step toward creating an impartial, comprehensive and searchable national database of people killed during interactions with law enforcement'
"What I've Learned from Two Years Collecting Data on Police Killings"
- Digby and Rick Perlstein discussed Rick's book, The Invisible Bridge: The Fall of Nixon and the Rise of Reagan, on Virtually Speaking.
- David Dayen and Dave Johnson talked about Ferguson, shutting down government, austerity, Rick Perry's indictment, the Bank of America mortgage settlement, etc. on Virtually Speaking Sundays.
- Kathleen Geier discussed Women, Public Policy and the Workplace on Virtually Speaking with Jay Ackroyd.
Alan Grayson's attempt to demilitarize the police didn't get very far in Congress. Legislators seemed concerned that doing so would "devastate police departments." "Here's How Lawmakers Use The War On Terror To Defend Police Militarization. [...] Grayson pointed out that police aren't using military weapons for terrorists. 'Where is the terrorism on our streets? Instead, these weapons are being used to arrest barbers and to terrorize the general population,' he said. 'In fact, one might venture to say that the weapons are often used by a majority to terrorize a minority.'"
Marcy Wheeler at The Week, "This is why you can't trust the NSA. Ever." - Let's just say their reports on themselves leave a lot of gaps.
"Anti-trans trolling spree forces Wikipedia to ban U.S. House staffers for third time [..] According to The Hill, Wikipedia instituted the ban on Wednesday night after users operating from the House IP address made a series of anti-trans edits to the page for Netflix series Orange is the New Black."
Sirota has been doing lots of coverage lately of the blatant corruption in, well, everything. Recent stories include "Small State, Big Losses On A Wall Street Gamble", "SEC Complaint Filed Against Erskine Bowles", and "Chicago Mayor Received $100K From Comcast Before Boosting Merger". Sam Seder talked to him about Taxpayers Funding the Marriage Between Wall Street & Politicians on The Majority Report
Amazingly, Princeton notices that the U.S. is No Longer An Actual Democracy: "A new study from Princeton spells bad news for American democracy - namely, that it no longer exists. Asking "[w]ho really rules?" researchers Martin Gilens and Benjamin I. Page argue that over the past few decades America's political system has slowly transformed from a democracy into an oligarchy, where wealthy elites wield most power. Using data drawn from over 1,800 different policy initiatives from 1981 to 2002, the two conclude that rich, well-connected individuals on the political scene now steer the direction of the country, regardless of or even against the will of the majority of voters." Well, fancy that.
Walsh in Salon, "Exclusive: Secret new tape exposes Kochs' ludicrous strategy to win over America: Takeaway from secret panel on outreach to women, Latinos and youth? Dems should fear Koch money, but not messaging" - Actually, Dems should fear Koch messaging when it comes from the mouths of Democrats, as it has done for more than a couple of decades, now.
Lauren Windsor at the HuffPo, "Top Koch Strategist Argues The Minimum Wage Leads Directly To Fascism"
Tom Sullivan at Scrutiny Hooligans on Fighting A Command Economy With Monopoly: "At the end of the Revolutionary War, there were an estimated half million Tories in this country. Royalists by temperament, loyal to the King and England, predisposed to government by hereditary royalty and landed nobility, men dedicated to the proposition that all men are not created equal. After the Treaty of Paris, you know where they went? Nowhere. A few moved back to England, or to Florida or to Canada. But most stayed right here." With lots of quotes from Thomas Frank's interview with Barry Lynn, "Free markets killed capitalism: Ayn Rand, Ronald Reagan, Wal-Mart, Amazon and the 1 percent's sick triumph over us all ".
"Progressive Left's Latest Target: EMILY's List" - EMILY stands for Early Money Is Like Yeast - but the organization isn't really that interested in people who aren't already getting money from other sources. "Saldana said that in one conversation with EMILY's List officials, they pointed to the gangbuster fundraising that Christie Vilsack, the wife of Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack, was doing in her congressional race in Iowa. 'I thought, "OK, I am not married to a Cabinet member. I would love to do a fundraiser in Washington, but I don't have those connections,"' Saldaña said. 'I wouldn't even say they supported me. Everything was met with resistance because we weren't wealthy enough.'"
"Incarcerated For Writing Science Fiction: A Dorchester County, Maryland, teacher was taken in for an "emergency medical evaluation," suspended from his job, and barred from setting foot on another public school. Authorities searched his school, Mace's Lane Middle School in Cambridge, for weapons. As classes resumed, parents worried that their children were in danger, so police decided to remain on the premises to watch over them. What happened? The teacher, Patrick McLaw, published a fiction novel. Under a pen name. About a made-up school shooting. Set in the year 2902."
This week in astroturfing, "Sacramento: Debate over plastic bag ban takes a weird but familiar turn" when it turns out that advocacy groups for keeping plastic bags are just industry lobbyists in disguise.
I am delighted that Nobody likes Andrew Cuomo anymore, even the NYT. Putz.
Thomas Frank interviews Cornel West: "He posed as a progressive and turned out to be counterfeit. We ended up with a Wall Street presidency, a drone presidency, a national security presidency. The torturers go free. The Wall Street executives go free. The war crimes in the Middle East, especially now in Gaza, the war criminals go free. And yet, you know, he acted as if he was both a progressive and as if he was concerned about the issues of serious injustice and inequality and it turned out that he's just another neoliberal centrist with a smile and with a nice rhetorical flair. And that's a very sad moment in the history of the nation because we are - we're an empire in decline. Our culture is in increasing decay. Our school systems are in deep trouble. Our political system is dysfunctional. Our leaders are more and more bought off with legalized bribery and normalized corruption in Congress and too much of our civil life. You would think that we needed somebody - a Lincoln-like figure who could revive some democratic spirit and democratic possibility." (Via Welcome to Pottersville 2.)
How health insurance companies still cheat customers under Obamacare: "One of the things that the Affordable Care Act (aka ACA, aka Obamacare) was meant to do was make sure that people with pre-existing medical problems could get health insurance. And that their insurance was affordable. But that may not be the case with some insurance companies. What these insurance companies seem to be doing is targeting prospective patients who have medical illnesses that require a lot of treatment and placing obstacles in their way to getting insured with the offending companies."
Comment at DKos from Joy22: I've been a nurse for 32 years....part of that in an emergency dept. Dealing with combative, physically and verbally abusive patients was a frequent occurrence. We've been cursed, pushed, swung at, bitten and spit on. We've dealt with patients who are confused and belligerent due to drunkenness, drug reactions, head injuries, mental illness and even diabetics with low blood glucose levels. We didn't have guns or mace or tasers or clubs. We were armed with only a stethoscope. We used our training, our skills and our wits to subdue aggressive patients. Yes, there were times when we had to restrain and sedate patients....but there are ways to accomplish this without further harming your patient or allowing them to harm themselves. There was no beating, kicking or choke holds involved! Maybe cops need to take the medical profession's motto into consideration: "FIRST DO NO HARM". Our lives are on the line too.....especially considering the numerous life threatening blood borne illnesses that we are in contact with. Somehow.....we manage to get out jobs done without shooting anyone."
Sam Seder talked to Dana Goldstein about the Teacher Wars on The Majority Report.
The Great Dereliction: "A quick thought experiment: name a leader in a position of power you (really) admire, trust, and respect. Not just the head of an 'alternative' company or political party, but a well-known, mainstream, orthodox, leader of the status quo. Can you?"
"Obama Weighing Delay in Action on Immigration" - This guy is such a coward I can't believe it.
Rock and Roll: The Blue Pills
Someone find me the .pls file for this radio station, I like it.
Carol King and Danny Kootch, "It's Too Late", 1971.
Sorry it's taken so long for this one, not least because the longer I take to post, the longer the posts get. But at least I've finally finished re-reading the entire Thunderbolts saga from start to finish. Now I just need to catch up with the Honorverse and - wait, no spoilers on whether Weber ever figures out that centrism is bad economics.