Link Roundup, 9/17/16

From Scientific American: A DNA analysis of the global spread of house-cats.

From The Daily Dot: Don’t act surprised. George H.W. Bush, who fought Fascists in the Pacific, will be voting for Hillary.

From Quartz: Interesting essay on Fascism in the context of Donald Trump, with interesting implications for the modern GOP.

From the Washington Post: Colorado voters remain supportive of legalized marijuana.

From Chicago Magazine: A strange and surprising portrait of gang life in Chicago.

Chris Ladd is a Texan living in the Chicago area. He has been involved in grassroots Republican politics for most of his life. He was a Republican precinct committeeman in suburban Chicago until he resigned from the party and his position after the 2016 Republican Convention. He can be reached at gopliferchicago at gmail dot com.

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166 comments on “Link Roundup, 9/17/16
  1. Sir Magpie De Crow says:

    Found a very interesting story/phenomenon. Worthy of being monitored for further developments.

    “Black Cops at Odds With Fraternal Order of Police Over Trump Endorsement”

    “The endorsement of Donald Trump by the Fraternal Order of Police appears to have driven a wedge between many black cops and their white brothers in blue.”

    “And nowhere is the split more visible than in Philadelphia, where the local FOP chapter has fallen in line and also endorsed the Republican presidential candidate — over the objections of a group that represents some 2,500 African-American officers in the city and which has branded Trump an “outrageous bigot.”

    “Our Local FOP is saying that our people have to follow the national lead,” Rochelle Bilal, head of the Philadelphia Guardian Civic League, told NBC News. “We are saying you don’t have to vote for Donald Trump and the national FOP should have stayed out of this election.”

    “Bilal, a former Philadelphia cop who retired after 27 years on the force, said “those of us in law enforcement who are people of color are constantly trying to build bridges to the community, we’re trying to build trust in law enforcement.”

    “But “the Trump campaign is racist, sexist, anti-gay. It’s a divisive campaign that’s now dividing law enforcement,” she said.”

    “There is no way anybody of color with any common sense would support the candidacy of Donald Trump,” Bilal added.”

    To Rochelle Bilal… you have a new fan.

    A black female police officer in Philadelphia for 27 years?! There are probably few people (of any ethnicity) that are tougher (or more pragmatic) than her.

    I shall abide by her opinion on this.

  2. Sir Magpie De Crow says:

    Something people don’t know realize about Chicago is that in many ways it is a nexus point for many black families.

    Their ancestors fled the humiliation, blatant exploitation, the brutality of the alliance of local police and the Klan, rapes … and murder of the South (Mississippi, Texas, South Carolina, Alabama, etc.).

    Chicago was at that time the promise land, a refuge, a place for a new start.
    That’s why a lot of black family roots grow from that town.

    Now we have a presidential candidate who proposes policies that would probably turn it into the same kind of complete hellscape like the places I mentioned were in the 1920’s and beyond. The very kind of social justice wasteland so many African Americans attempted the flee in the early part of the 20th century.

    “Trump clarifies stop-and-frisk: I only meant Chicago”

    “Donald Trump doubled down on his call for implementation of stop-and-frisk Thursday — but only in Chicago.”

    “The Republican presidential nominee suggested the controversial stop-and-frisk policy to mitigate violent crime in America’s inner cities during an interview with Fox News’ Sean Hannity broadcast Wednesday evening.”

    Yes, an interview with Sean “I was once friends with Cliven Bundy” Hannity.

    Does anyone here really want someone like Trump to turn a place like Chicago and its troubled/hurting neighborhoods into some kind of South African Apartheid styled township?

    This is the thing many black people are probably thinking about when he says “What the hell do you have to lose?”

    I hope I don’t have to remind everyone here that our current African-American president began what would become his national political career in Chicago.

    The same guy Trump has for years tried to discredit/undermine with conspiracy theories and blatant lies.

    This latest targeting of Chicago will not go unnoticed by black people in Chicago. This will also be noted and remarked upon by black people all over.

    • 1mime says:

      You know how I feel about Trump, but we should not ignore the horrendous problems that exist in Chicago for black people. Trump’s solutions are not appropriate, but there are problems that justify change – the right kind of change so that it will be a safer place for all people who live there.

    • flypusher says:

      I don’t doubt that the Black citizens of Chicago are highly motivated to say “HELL NO” to the short-fingered vulgarian. But IL is safely in the Dem column. What matters even more is that the Black citizens of Philadelphia, and Cleveland, and Cincinnati, and Miami, and Charlotte, and other cities in the battleground states GOTV!

      • 1mime says:

        From the link that was sent earlier, it seems like Repubs in PA are doing everything they can to intimidate voters. They are doing this in a rush and at the last minute. I hope Dems in PA can get a court to act on this in time.

        I repeat what I have said many times: if the Republican plan is so good, why do they need to engage in tactics like this? Win on the merits of conservatism – not voter intimidation! That is so wrong.

      • Mime,

        I know i keep saying the same thing but people have to vote and they do not. If all minorities voted, The Republican party would be a lot different! They wouldn’t even dream of pulling these stunts.

        they can vote absentee and work around all these voter ID laws. But they don’t. They complain. But they don’t vote. Speaking just for me but i get very frustrated by the low minority voter turnout in some areas!

      • 1mime says:

        Still, if you are among a target race or ethnicity that every election of significance is profiled for voter intimidation, would you be enthusiastic about voting? It would make you or me more intensely committed to voting, but for a race that feels their needs will seldom be addressed by “whoever” is running, it is a disincentive. It is still not right. In addition, many working people who are hourly employees, lack transportation, and work multiple jobs and thus have a great deal more difficulty spending hours standing in line. These are still “excuses” but more understandable. What if we made it as easy for all people to vote as we do seniors, who can sign up for mail in ballots?

        Even with the Romney/Obama 2012 election, voter turnout in the US was “about” 57%. In a nation like ours, that is pretty sad.

        My philosophy is to always vote. My preference is that voter registration be simplified and voting itself be made much easier. When it is, voting percentages go up, as has been substantiated in WA state with its new voter laws.

      • 1mime says:


        Here is a prime example of why black and poor people don’t believe that their votes count – or, in this case, that their lives don’t count.

        Flint, MI water supply is still contaminated. Congress has still not acted to provide federal funding to enable the city to make the infrastructure replacement and repairs, and it is not in this Continuing Resolution either.

        THIS is why minorities have lost faith with government. You don’t “play” the flooding victims of LA against the poisoned water victims of Flint. It’s not right.

      • Houston-Stay-At-Homer says:

        “they can vote absentee and work around all these voter ID laws. But they don’t. They complain. But they don’t vote. Speaking just for me but i get very frustrated by the low minority voter turnout in some areas!”

        The percentage of Blacks voting in 2008 and 2012 exceeded that of Whites (thanks Obama), but to your point, folks should not need to “work around” all this crap.

        The more inconvenient we make voting, the fewer voters of all races show up to vote, except older White people with time on their hands and an axe to grind.

      • tuttabellamia says:

        HT, from my personal experience with minority voters, apathy is the main problem, and thinking one’s vote does not matter. You first have to want to vote to get to the stage where voter ID laws would be an issue.

      • 1mime says:

        If voter intimidation didn’t work, Republicans wouldn’t be using it. Full stop. There are minorities who want to vote, try to vote, only to meet with unreasonable demands or situations. There will always be people who choose not to vote for “whatever” reason. Those people are missing an opportunity to participate in government, but there is nothing more I individually can do other than encourage and assist people to vote. The rest is up to them.

        As you know, TX passed new voter ID laws part of which were struck down by the Appeals Court. The Court mandated explicit instructions as to steps that TX must take to inform voters and Clerks of the court mandated changes. On NPR today, on Houston Matters, the host noted that there is a TX county official who has stated he will not comply with the court instructions. I don’t know if anyone within the district he serves (? loosely described) will appeal this but this is the problem that is so often faced. County officials (just like the same sex marriage SC ruling that many Clerks of Court refused to implement initially) and states are
        thumbing their noses at courts and federal regulations forcing individuals to implement a legal challenge to a practice that has already been litigated and ruled upon by the courts!

        These things happen, they place an unfair burden on people who are trying to vote, and it is egregious and wrong. Is it any wonder that so many people who are affected by arrogant people like this just.don’

      • Houston-Stay-At-Homer says:

        Tutt…I will defer to your perspective on this.

        I think lots of minorities feel their voices and votes don’t matter, and in a lot of ways they aren’t wrong. We’ve built a couple of centuries of systems to make that true.

        Black and Hispanic voting in California, NY, and Texas won’t make any difference in the Presidential election, and gerrymandering at the state level marginalizes their voices in House elections.

        Also, it has to be odd to go election after election where none of the candidates look like you, sound like you, or can relate to your experiences in the world.

        There is rarely a shortage of middle-aged, pudgy, White dudes running for office, so I always have someone to which I can relate. He might be richer and more successful than me or have a different political philosophy than me, but there is the assumption that he has experienced the world from a somewhat similar perspective.

        Black turnout shot up for Obama for a reason. The excitement of having “one of our own” running for office is palpable.

      • tuttabellamia says:

        HT: I was thinking along the same lines. To try to cure voter apathy, it would good to have another minority candidate for president to get minorities fired up to vote, so President Obama is not just an isolated example of a minority president, an exception to the rule.

      • 1mime says:

        We DO have a pretty close to minority candidate running, SHE is called woman. Women may outnumber men in sheer count, but in power and opportunity, that glass ceiling is still daunting. I look forward to an Hispanic candidate seeking major office so as to draw this group into active political participation. It’s coming, Tutta.

      • tuttabellamia says:

        You’re right, Mime, but I don’t see a female candidate inspiring ethnic minorities to vote in large numbers, unless she is a minority herself.

        Minorities love Mrs. Clinton, but I don’t see her getting out the vote in the same way that Mr. Obama did. Plus, he has a very special charisma that she lacks.

      • 1mime says:

        You’ll get no argument from me in that regard, Tutta.

      • tuttabellamia says:

        HT, I like your choice of words: PERSPECTIVE.

        It’s similar to an OPINION, but it’s grounded in some firsthand knowledge.

  3. “PA Bill would allow poll watchers from outside the district.”

    This is just amazing! Lifer, how does the Republican party justify what is obviously to any normal person intimidating minority voters? Obviously the party knows there will never be any blow back from party members.

    • flypusher says:

      The Black Panthers could volunteer for some poll watching.

    • Armchair Philosopher says:

      Thank you so much for posting this. I live in PA and had no idea. Facebook post with links and phone numbers has been posted, and calls to legislators have been made. This is such crap!

      • 1mime says:

        Please try to alert us on this site as to what legal challenge there will be to this legislation, Armchair. As a matter of fact, you probably can voice your opinion through some organization that you respect and help build a groundswell of support for legal challenge. There isn’t much time to work this through the legal process so don’t delay. This is so incredibly sad.

  4. Kenneth Devaney says:

    An entertaining video aimed at millenials to register and vote (3 minutes) at the 2:14 mark it takes a funny turn.

  5. Sir Magpie De Crow says:

    What I can’t fathom are the ironic aspects of the idiocy of Team Trump’s campaign.

    Trump Jr. uses a picture of skittles to dehumanize refugees… and the picture was taken by a photographer who was once a refugee. In fact his family left every thing behind to escape Turkish military occupation in Cyprus.

    Yeah, that’s right… the Muslims!

    Trump wants to keep out and deport all the illegal immigrants… even though apparently Trump Tower’s construction was successful in part due to the effort of illegal immigrant workers… who he tried to fleece of their pay (that’s called slavery folks).

    People at the GOP convention applauding Mrs. Trumps speech… even though it plagerized Michelle Obama’s speech that she made on behalf of her husband in 2008.

    Trump campaign also arranged early in the campaign a meeting with numerous black pastors, later claiming he got their endorsement. They said it was a meeting to talk and express their concerns and priorities, not to give their immediate seal of approval for his campaign.

    Merely engaging in talk with him resulted in the humiliating spectacle of being played by a truly despicable man. A man who has encouraged violence against young black protesters at his rallies and endorsed without reserve the lethal draconian police tactics in black communities.

    But how many Trump supporters or Trump sympathetic voters only remember that they heard this group of black pastors supported Trump, but don’t remember how they later said they clearly didn’t and repudiated that narrative?

    How would you like it… any of us for that matter… if someone exploited your talent, accomplishments and hard work then turned around and turned you into a scapegoat for America’s problems?

    I’d be p*ssed.

    These are not the actions of successful business people or winners. This is a family of thieves.

    A family of f@*king glorified grifters.

    Stealing intellectual property, stealing wages, stealing the words of a First Lady… or in one case (when Trump tried to exploit the tragic death of an NBA star’s cousin) the dignity of a dead innocent woman.

    When will Reince Preibus, Paul Ryan, Chris Christie, etc. (who talk a good game about Republican desire for ethnic and cultural diversity) have their fill of this horrible exploitation of people.

    When will the stench of it all reach their noses?

    They had an opportunity to tell the conservative blue collar white voters they are simply another group of potential victims that will be exploited by this cynical demagogic conman.

    Someone needs to be able to successfully explain to this demographic group they will fare no better than the ragheads”, n***ers, wetbacks, feminist fat pigs and f***ots they openly despise.

    I just hope that epiphany occurs before November.

    • flypusher says:

      “When will Reince Preibus, Paul Ryan, Chris Christie, etc. (who talk a good game about Republican desire for ethnic and cultural diversity) have their fill of this horrible exploitation of people.”

      They won’t. They are gambling that Trump wins despite all the wrong, dishonest things you cited (and more), and then Trump plays figurehead, basks in the adoration of his cult following, and they are the real power behind the throne (although Trump’s slimy children may contest them for that). There are no take backs when you sell your soul.

    • Archetrix says:

      This WaPo editorial touches a point that I’ve been clarifying in my own mind.

      I think that Trump voters want to stick it to the rising classes, so it actually doesn’t matter what he says. In fact the more outrageous he becomes and the more the hated classes sputter with indignation, the better they like it. It’s the voting equivalent of rolling coal.

      I think Limbaugh was the first to discover the seam of money you could mine by amplifying this kind of conservative fury and disdain, although I don’t believe it has much to do with actual conservatives.

      We saw some of this in the Brexit vote, when quite a few people woke up from their political hangover the next morning and realized that they wanted to cast a protest vote and ended up shooting themselves and their country in the foot.

      • 1mime says:

        Chris touches upon this fact in his Forbes post. I completely agree with you. What is frightening is that they aren’t thinking any further than their F&*^ U vote on Nov. 8th. We all will have to live with the consequences of this election, and Trump is dangerous for our national security, economy and world relations.

  6. Kenneth Devaney says:

    A couple of folks have asked, so if you missed the Senate Banking Committee hearing with CEO of Wells Fargo (Stumpf), yeah, that is his name here is the link to C-Span’s full coverage …warning , it is like 3 hours long. Elizabeth Warren lights the place up during her time.

    For a more light hearted approach The Daily Show on Comedy Central covered this story Wed September 21, 2016. I’ll let your imaginations ruminate on how they incorporated his name into their story.

    • 1mime says:

      Thanks for the c-span link….when I don’t have anything else to do (-; I’ll fast-forward to Warren…I heard all her testimony – I want to see and hear from the rest of the committee..

      As for imagining the play on Stumpf, well, let’s just say, anyone who would find PutinTrump funny won’t have any problem with Stumpf !

  7. Stephen says:

    I though this interesting. A break down of the Florida voter.

    It was interesting that whites my age, I am 63 years old, that Democrat and Republican support is about equal.With younger voters Democrats out number Republicans. Those whites over 70 year old are where most of Trump’s white support is. Problem is that those older white voters show up at every election.

    If younger voters show up the Democratic ticket will win. Right now in Orlando there is a massive voter registration drive going on by the Democratic Party. That with get out the vote efforts I think will put Florida in the Clinton column.

    • 1mime says:

      That was interesting, Stephen. We used to live in the FL panhandle and I know how conservative that area is…don’t expect it changed much…lots of military bases between Pensacola and Panama City and north.

      GOTV will be huge……..As you noted, old white people consider voting an act of contrition….they just have to do it…

    • Florida has a lot of dynamics happening that are changing its political face at a pretty remarkable pace, comparatively speaking.

      Just over a decade ago, George W. Bush overwhelmingly won the Cuban-American vote in Florida. Republicans went from that to Obama and Romney effectively splitting the vote four years ago and there’s just no conceivable way Trump will be competitive in that community. Older Cuban-Americans see a strongman in him that reminds them why they escaped to this country in the first place and his standing among the younger ones are pretty much reflective of what you see nationwide.–election.html

      Also, it looks like Dems are getting some unexpected help from a Republican donor, Mike Fernandez, in helping to defeat Trump. He’ll be donating a whopping 2 million dollars to help register FL Latinos.

      • Stephen says:

        Puerto Ricans are becoming the more numerous Hispanics and they vote mainly Democrat. Florida will eventual become blue over time. Orange County was in my youth as conservative as North Florida. But immigration has change it to blue. Even the older population ,which is white and black. here has gotten more progressive in the last 50 years. Hard to be against them when part of your family is them. What happen to the Normans by the Saxons is happening to the the older ethnic population. The Saxons while conquered by the Normans never the less absorbed and assimilated them through marriage. Blacks were not numerous enough to do this. But Hispanics are. This is going to kill the old Confederacy over time as these people move out into the old south .Which is a good part of the reason that Georgia this year is in play. The White Nationalist are way too late. They are the walking dead.

    • tuttabellamia says:

      Stephen, if I were a Florida voter, I’d also have a breakdown!

  8. Stephen says:

    Hillary held a rally today in Orlando. Spoke about the rights of handicap people. Accommodating them so they could work and. fully participate in society. No major block of votes there. Like Obama I see by her fruits she is the real deal, Christian.

    The Wells Fargo thing shows we are not done with reining in our finance industry. Sure am glad Senator Warren is on the job.

    • Houston-Stay-At-Homer says:

      I read an interesting article about people with disabilities,and there are something like nine million people with disabilities in the US, and that is not an unsizeable group in terms of an election. However, there is such a range of disabilities and severity of disabilities that it is hard to group folks together.

      Voting rates of people with disabilities is low (not surprisingly), and what little data there is suggests a normal split between GOP and Democrats. Trump’s mocking of the disabled reporter and Hillary campaigning on the issue might change those numbers a bit.

      • 1mime says:

        It would be helpful to look at Clinton’s jobs initiative for disabled people as an outreach to a group that is under served and deserving – not as a “constituency”. It doesn’t seem to matter what Clinton does – it is always scrutinized as self-serving in some way. Why not consider that disabled people (9M as noted) can and should be integrated into society so that they can contribute, not subsist on public assistance? Why hasn’t any other candidate focused on the job needs of this group of people? Maybe we should be asking that question instead of always looking for an ulterior motive from Clinton. Does the fact that Trump made despicable comments about a handicapped reporter diminish an effort to assist this group of Americans for fear of “looking” political rather than deserving? Does this make outreach in their behalf off limits?

        It doesn’t seem to matter what Clinton says or does, there “some underlying benefit” calculated to help her – rather than help others. I am so very tired of the double standard. We have Trump openly pandering to group after group and when Hillary offers a jobs proposal for people who are disabled, we hold it suspect? Yet, with Trump, it’s just – meh.

        Critique her proposals on their merits, but by god at some point can each of us give her the benefit of the doubt that the work she is doing to offer solutions to problems she sees, is positive, and in many cases, long overdue?

      • Houston-Stay-At-Homer says:

        Mime…not disagreeing with you at all. Any attention Hillary pulls to the issue is good attention.

        I can guarantee you, however, that Hillary’s team was looking at this from the political angle.

        It is a political season, if anything that helps Hillary with any group is going to make me happy.

  9. Griffin says:

    Stephen Carter compares the Republican Platform of 1916 to the GOP platform of 2016. He concludes that they are different on trade and immigration but are otherwise fairly similar. Thoughts?

    I don’t think this is totally accurate. GOP was still more socially progressive back then they are now (for their respective times I mean), and didn’t endorse zany economics. What the 1916 platform DIDN’T say is almost as important as what id does say in comparing the two.

  10. 1mime says:

    The debates are coming….. “Speaking of fact checks, during the debates, The Washington Post’s Fact Check team will be doing it live, and they’ll send out a newsletter of their ratings for the candidates’ skewed statements afterward.”

    For those who are nimble with technology, you should enjoy this WaPo interactive opportunity to engage in fact checking debate statements.

  11. 1mime says:

    Getting back to the election here……..From Bloomberg: If Clinton wins, the author suggests that:

    “it seems most likely that Republican senators wouldn’t want the final act of their majority session to be acquiescence to the judicial candidate nominated by President Barack Obama.”
    This, despite the FACT, that Justice Merrick Garland is known to be a centrist justice……..This despite the FACT that this vacancy on SCOTUS is now in its 7th month, and is causing many problems at the appellate levels as well as with a more limited docket due to less manpower.

    Isn’t that a shame. After all this time, they have one.more.chance. to stick it to Obama. Poor Garland – There is no way this man wins.

    There are a number of other scenarios discussed. Good article. This is how Republicans govern, and this is what is at stake in this election.

  12. flypusher says:

    More in the police shooting category:

    I have no opinion to offer on this case, as there are a bunch of very relevant facts not yet in. But one thing that ought to be clear to to every police Dept in the country: you guys can no longer expect to be given the benefit of the doubt. That was squandered away by the bad apples who have used unwarranted deadly force, then lied and covered up. It’s a damn shame, because law-abiding citizens would rather trust the police, but we’ve got a real problem here. The smarter and in-touch police chiefs/depts get this, but some people still have blinders on.

    • rulezero says:

      I find it odd that when a police shooting appears to be unjustified, the mass of posters here are very open about how they feel it’s unjustified. When it appears that the shooting is justified, it’s “no opinion.” I’ve chimed in a couple of times for when I think something looks amiss, but even I admit that I wasn’t there, wasn’t in the officer’s mind, and don’t have a complete view of the scene the way investigators on the ground would.

      If people are going to riot, loot, block interstates, and burn businesses to the ground every time we use force, then you’re quickly going to have nothing but reactive policing. That is, if you even have police at all. There are several articles online detailing how police agencies around the country are having great difficulty finding applicants to do the job. Add to the fact that now we have black officers shooting black suspects and it still isn’t good enough. There was a gun on scene? No problem, the police planted it. Everything’s a conspiracy and a cover-up. We have politicians in Texas suggesting that neighborhoods should be policed by a member of the same race (separate but equal?). We have a black state’s attorney in Maryland who “heard the calls for justice” and decided to indict six officers and ruin their careers based upon the public’s “feelings.” The entire set of trials was a sham and they’ve all been exonerated by bench trial.

      I would be very careful at justifying a lack of confidence in the police based upon the actions of a great few. This can quickly become a slippery slope to basically demeaning anyone or anything you feel some kind of way about. Where does it stop? Catholic priests? Politicians? Muslims? Black folks? White folks?

      • flypusher says:

        I can’t speak for the opinions expressed by others, only mine. I have not offered an opinion on justified/unjustified for either of the two most recent cases because all the facts are not yet out. The Tulsa incident does took bad, but I’m not judging it yet.

        I’ve seen the premature rushes to judgement go both ways. My goal is to avoid that. But sadly, I’ve seen enough police accounts contradicted by video that I have to break out the salt each time there is a new incident. That’s not something I want to do. I’m hoping that in the end video helps settle the trust issue, but the journey there is going to be bumpy.

      • 1mime says:

        Violence as a response to violence shouldn’t happen, but I do understand why it happened (NC). Undoubtedly, we will learn more about both killings in NC and OK, but the fact remains: yet another black man has been killed under circumstances which appear could have been handled differently. There have been too many instances like this and all rolled up together, it creates a pattern of behavior that needs to be changed. You and I both know that the allegations of a gun being planted has been accurate in other killings. Whether or not it will be corroborated this time will likely be revealed in the report. Unfortunately, the dead don’t get to tell their story, but sometimes a bystander with video capability can. How often has that been the case. How many times has video disputed events as reported.

        I know there are bad people and good police. Conversely, there are good people and bad police. More often, I suspect, police are poorly trained for the situations they frequently find themselves in, and hair-trigger reactions happen and people get killed.

        I won’t repeat the litany of problems inherent in how either case appears to have been handled. Suffice it to say, there has been too much smoke in regards to black men’s deaths by police to accept that the police do not share blame. Again, dead people don’t talk. When policemen/women don’t video with available equipment, they set themselves up for suspicion. These two events follow closely on too many others of questionable nature. All you said is worthwhile, but we both know that stuff goes down that isn’t right. When it goes down day after day, that is a problem. For a policeman, it may cause a demotion, time off with pay, or charges. For the victim, there is no second chance.

      • johngalt says:

        Use of deadly force by police is often justified. When attacked by an individual clearly who is armed and clearly posing a threat, few people would suggest that an officer should not defend him- or herself with the appropriate force. But what should I say to that? That I am glad they did so? The end result is that a person is dead, so I’m not glad about that. Given the choice between the officer and the attacker, I’d (far) rather the the perpetrator be dead than the public servant, but that does not mean I’m happy about any of it.

        Where the line should be drawn in terms of the use of deadly force is not easy to define, but it is pretty clear that some shootings are unjustified. The loss of confidence in the police comes from a sense of impunity – that the blue wall comes up to protect colleagues despite the facts of the case. When people start to believe that the police operate without real accountability (as opposed to the charade of being investigated by one’s peers), the inevitable outcome is a loss of trust. That lack of trust is apparent in many minority communities and everyone is worse off for it. Ferguson explodes after what now appears to have been a justified use of force, but from that emerges a picture of a highly adversarial relationship between the police and the people they are supposed to protect. The victim in the recent shooting in Minneapolis had been stopped 57 times in six years before his last, fatal encounter.

        As in every profession, police officers make mistakes, and there are some officers who should never have been hired in the first place. We entrust airline pilots with the lives of a bunch of people and have a zero tolerance policy toward substance abuse, showing up drunk, and other issues. Two United pilots were hauled off a flight in Scotland a couple of weeks ago on the suspicion of being drunk. If their BACs showed that, they’re gone. Career over, and not too many of their colleagues would protest. As a result, you don’t seriously worry about the plane crashing because of pilot error. Like it or not, it is easy to perceive that police officers (or their union reps) are more interested in protecting their colleagues than the trust of the people they protect. And I think that perception, rulezero, makes your difficult job even harder.

      • 1mime says:

        It is rare that you will ever find me on the side of open carry, but in this particular case, a man’s clear rights to carry openly plus his constitutional right to free speech, plus his constitutional right to maintain control of his camera – were all abridged by – state police. Things like this happen and when they do they add credence to the stories about police evidence and charges fabrication and intimidation/harassment. Read it and decide for yourself.

      • Houston-Stay-At-Homer says:

        RZ…Come on dude, you can’t pretend to “find it odd” that people get bent out of shape when a killing seems unjustified but no one discusses a justified shooting.

        I’m not going to congratulate Wells Fargo for keeping an ATM open, but I’m going to piss and moan like crazy when they fraudulently open a new account in my name.

        I don’t even know what to make of “now we have black officers shooting black suspects and it still isn’t good enough”…I’m going to assume you didn’t type what you meant with “good enough”, but most officers I know seem to be of the mindset that maybe we shouldn’t be killing folks as anything other than a last resort.

        What you call “a great few” that cause a lack of confidence might be contradicted by the experience of a great many of Black folks over the course of their lives.

        Your slippery slope from a lack of confidence in police officers to demeaning a race or religion doesn’t have much lubrication or incline.

      • Bobo Amerigo says:

        Not speaking for anyone else, but perhaps ‘no comment’ equals something like ‘professionalism displayed’ so no problem?

        My views are colored by a story by a former co-worker who is also a former cop.

        He said he and his partner would drive into a black neighborhood and rev their engine in a neighborhood with pedestrians.

        If anyone reacted and ran away, they’d give chase. Harassment with no evidence of a crime of any type.

        I don’t think all bad shootings result in burning business or blocking freeways.

        I also don’t think that all cops are bad.

        But there is something really bad about a guy whose car breaks down getting shot and killed.

        How can that happen if everything is peachy keen in the cop department?

        You have a demanding job. Do I have to assure you of my respect for your work before I express distress regarding this situation?

    • 1mime says:

      The NC shooting is going to raise more hackles. It seems that NC, a state that creates laws for everything they “don’t like or don’t want” in their state, began the bodycam program in Charlotte in 2015, but then this happened:

      “North Carolina passed a law just two months ago that could prevent body cam footage of Keith Lamont Scott’s death from emerging soon — if ever.

      Gov. Pat McCrory signed a law July 11 that denies the public access to police body cam and dashcam footage without a judge’s orders.”

      Bystanders claim the victim had no gun. Absent video, the police version insists he had a gun and brandished it. If they are correct, why wouldn’t they release the body cam?

  13. 1mime says:

    Strange bedfellows. The WSJ in rare agreement with Pres. Obama, asserts that passing legislation to allow US citizens to sue Saudi Arabia for complicity in the 9/11 attacks is a bad decision.

    “The bill, which passed both houses of Congress on a voice vote, would create a new exception to sovereign immunity, the doctrine that protects foreign countries and their diplomats from lawsuits in U.S. courts. The bill is designed to let families of victims sue Saudi Arabia and its citizens for alleged complicity in 9/11.

    The plaintiffs bar is salivating as it eyes Saudi-owned U.S. assets, and the Saudis would be foolish to keep assets in the U.S. where they could be confiscated. Their emergency sale would have hard-to-predict impact on asset prices, harm the reputation of the U.S. as a destination for foreign capital, and perhaps cause the Saudis to drop their currency peg to the dollar.

    As dangerous would be the impact on American assets abroad as other countries play copycat and carve their own exceptions to sovereign immunity. The U.S. has far more assets overseas to seize, and foreign courts offer far less legal protection against frivolous lawsuits than American courts do.”

    Be careful what you ask for……..

    • RobA says:

      I tend to agree with Obama. My feelings that Saudi involvement in 9/11 was covered up (or at least downplayed) notwithstanding, it is a pretty bad precedent to set.

      I heard one suppirter if the bill, when asked about potentially similar cases being brought against the US, say something like “well, this only allows ppl to sue governments for TERRORISM, so it doesn’t apply to us”.

      Now, I don’t think America is in the terrorism business, and there’s a distinct and real differences between US foreign policy and, say, Saudi foreign policy. With that said, the difference between a “terrorist” and a “freedom fighter/patriot” is often just a matter of geopolitics.

      The “patriots” of the Boston Tea Party are only thought of as such because America won the War of Independence and went on to be the dominant cultural force. At the time, they were thought of as terrorists by the British (or whatever the contemporary term for such ppl would have been), and if the British had won, they likely still would be.

      My point is, there are many, many, many ppl in the middle East who could make a strong case that they’ve been victims of American terrorism. And not every judge who heard such a case is going to be looking at it from the American perspective.

      • 1mime says:

        I would venture that America is guilty of terrorism when they embark upon stealth ventures such as helping a faction within a country with a coup (any number of examples of that) and I am certain people who witness a drone strike would feel the US is guilty of terrorism as well. Intention is certainly a legitimate point of contention, but not if the bomb lands on you or yours.

    • flypusher says:

      I really have some very mixed feelings here. I loathe the Saudi gov’t and how they run their country, and I think our official relations with them have been a stain on our honor. They have aided Sunni extremism and I suspect their hands are far dirtier in 9/11 than is diplomatically convenient to admit. But as much as I’d love to see those mofos answer in court, there are so many unintended consequences that could be unleashed.

      This whole situation just sucks.

  14. Bobo Amerigo says:

    In the Quartz article the author describes Trump supporters as feeling like they are left behind even in fact they are not.
    Feelings are not facts.
    Yet if we don’t address feelings problems arise.
    Is there an effective communications technique to address the feelings of people we might consider hypocrites or ignorant?
    I don’t know the answer.
    Maybe there’s no way to counteract the impressions provided by faux news and other actors who seek to divide by telling people things are not so good when in fact things are pretty good.
    It just seems to me that when people talk about their feelings, they are very vulnerable. In fact they may FEEL very vulnerable.
    So what can we do to keep all of us on the same path toward the American dream? ‘Cause it’s very scary when someone tries to split us up into groups on separate paths.

    • 1mime says:

      “when people talk about their feelings, they are very vulnerable. In fact they may FEEL very vulnerable.”

      And, what about people whose feelings never seem to be seen as “important”? This is how many people of color (not just black) feel. Basically, they feel “ignored, unimportant”…I talk to people who help me care for my husband – chiefly black and hispanic. To a one, they feel they are treated differently. It’s not to say that some within these groups don’t cause their own problems, they do, but as a race, they don’t feel anyone in authority really cares about their problems. Add police shootings to the mix and you end up with a volatile situation – which is not the right response but it seems to be the only way black people have been able to command attention with white authority figures. It then becomes an endless cycle, perpetuating frustration into violence, tamping down, only to erupt again because fundamentally, nothing is changing. Hence, BLM.

      As for white Trump supporters – some of it is fear and anger over class and job losses, but a lot of it is lightly masked racism. I know, I have family members who are pulling down healthy six figure incomes who are going to support Trump. They say it’s because they “can’t” vote for HRC, but it’s more than that. They are highly educated, employed, and indignant, and stupid, because when it’s all said and done, they have put their feelings and resentment over the security and well being of our nation.

      Take that, America!

      • vikinghou says:

        You’re right. Plus, many of them simply see Trump as a vehicle to undo and reverse the Obama presidency. Obama must feel vindicated by the excellent approval rating he’s enjoying. There’s no doubt in my mind that he would be reelected for a third term if it was possible. The following article describes how Obama’s popularity is driving the GOP crazy.

      • 1mime says:

        Obama’s legacy will depend upon “who” writes the history books. He has not done many things he should have and could have, but, by and large, he has been consequential. As significant, he has shown an incredible amount of dignity and personal restraint in the face of taunts and ugliness perpetuated by Republicans for whom no black person will ever be good enough to serve as POTUS. The more I study this group of people, the more obvious the racism is. That has got to change before we erupt in irreconcilable violence in our country.

    • tuttabellamia says:

      What I find ironic is that Blacks who protest about their plight are considered whiners, as in “they are so much better off now than they were 50 years ago, so why are they still complaining?”

      But some Whites are guilty of the very same thing — complaining over what they see as a loss — loss of jobs, loss of privilege, whatever, so they are in no position to whine about whiners.

      It’s as though Blacks should be thankful that they are better off now than before, whereas Whites are resentful that THEY are WORSE off than before — as if it’s all relative.

    • RobA says:

      You’re not convincing someone past age 50 with a chip on their shoulders the size of a city block to somehow see things a different way.

      I think the obky strategy that will make any difference is to win. And, barring that, limit the damage as much as you can and then play out the clock. Within 10 years ir so, enough of the Trumpeters will be gone to effectively neuter this toxic “movement”.

      I understand not ALL Trumpeters are Baby Boomers. But undeniably, the bulk is. And undeniably, those under 35 can’t stand Trump. Enough will be gone within 10 years so as to take away the bulk of their political power.

      • 1mime says:

        The problem with those under 30/35 is they don’t like HRC either…..and, their voting predictability is poor when not inspired.

      • RobA says:

        There’s a difference Mine between not being excited about a candidate, and being repulsed by them. Ppl in my circle that I know aren’t overly jazzed about HRC, but they are repulsed by Trump.

        Also, HRC and the Clintons are not the future of the Dem party. Everybody knows this. Frankly, they are likely the last of their kind. Nobody thinks Hillary’s way is the way forward, or are pinning their hopes on her. She’s basically “good enough”. Starting in 2020, Dem leaders (and the Party itself) are going to look something like a mix of Obama, Sanders, and Warren. Hillary’s brand of centre right/centre left politics will end with her administration.

      • 1mime says:

        What about millennials voting 3rd party or not voting? What is your sense of either scenario?

      • RobA says:

        Mime, I may be suffering from confirmation bias, but I truly think Millenials will vote in huge numbers, and largely for Clinton.

        And I don’t even run with an overly political/liberal crowd. My posting here is kind of my secret life lol.

        I have a blue collar career with mostly blue collar social circles. Half of the ppl in my peer group I know we’re Bernie Bros, and the other half probably wanted Kasich/Bush to win. All are united against Trump. And when somebody says (or posts on FB) about Johnson or Stein, the overwhelming result is somebody (sometimes me, but often not) chiming in about how a vote for either of them is essentially a vote for Trump.

        I think this election, millenials are going to become THE dominant political force in America, and (in my more optimistic moments) I tend to think that the entire American political spectrum will begin to skew that way.

        I think politics tends to move in large, looping cycles, which is fundamentally based on the physics principle of “for every action, there is an equal and opposite reaction”.

        I think the sexual/cultural revolution that happened in the 60’s, as well as the Warren liberal court CREATED the conservative bent of the past few decades. And I think we are now in the infancy of the reaction to that, which will likely usher in a progressive/liberal slant to society that will probably last a few decades. Until THAT liberal/progressive moment goes too far, which was cause a few decades of conservative slant after that, and so on and so forth.

        To be clear, these multi decade swings take place within the permanent, relentless trend of the cultural MIDDLE ever more to the left.

      • 1mime says:

        To be clear, I think progressives/liberals not only get “it” right, but they are much more fun to be around……At my age, I’d enjoy a few more decades (yeah, DECADES!) with the libs.

      • 1mime says:

        You can be proud of your “fellow” superstar millennials. They are doing good things with their money. I’d like to think I could “be around” til age 100 …. as long as I am healthy….which is the goal of the Zukerber/chan research initiative….talk about going “big”…..

      • @RobA: >] “I think this election, millenials are going to become THE dominant political force in America, and (in my more optimistic moments) I tend to think that the entire American political spectrum will begin to skew that way.

        ’16 isn’t going to be the Great Turning Point, but we’re not far off. Between now and 2020 is when the youngest of us will hit the voting age and after ’20 is when Millenials’ political strength will hit its relative peak. Our numbers will be far too strong by then and we’ll easily swamp the Boomer generation, which is already in decline.

    • tuttabellamia says:

      Bobo, maybe there’s an art to whining, an artful way of getting the message across so it doesn’t look like whining, so people don’t appear vulnerable.

      There’s also the art of diplomacy, Diplomacy might help to unite the groups that have been split. Or, what the media has torn asunder, no man can unite?

      • Bobo Amerigo says:

        Tutt, I’m glad there are professional diplomats willing to talk talk talk until a solution is agreed upon. (I can be a little reactive myself, sometimes inclined to call in b0mbs etc in the initial heat of an international incident…)

        But diplomats turn their attention outward to other countries. Is there a profession that looks in country to do the same kind of thing? Would it be community organizers? The project managers who carry out governmental projects?

        Maybe we could create a new agency tasked with calming feelings with cleverly presented facts that soothe and reassure those who are sure their country is somehow disenfranchising them.

        Perhaps we could call it the FFA (Feelings to Facts Agency) and Margaret Atwood could make it the centerpiece of a masterful work of social science fiction. 🙂

        There must be something President Hillary can do to bring together disparate groups. I hope.

      • tuttabellamia says:

        Bobo, can you think of anyone who is beyond reproach and loved and respected by most of the nation?

        John McCain, maybe?

      • 1mime says:

        Tutta, John McCain? Surely you’re kidding! But, you did get me to thinking about who in America might fit that awesome profile….And, know what? I can’t think of a single man of any walk of life who would be respected and loved by all. Isn’t that a shame.

  15. Kenneth Devaney says:

    Texas appears inclined to tempt SCOTUS to re-review their dismantling of section 4 of the Voting Rights Act by flouting a court order and then going to the court for remedy. Not sure what they are thinking.

    • 1mime says:

      An arrogant “in your face” blatant disregard for judicial orders that TX feels it is “above” and can ignore by pretending it didn’t happen. TX sends more appeals to SCOTUS than any other state in the nation. The arrogance of the AG division with the complicit support of the Governor, is long over-due for a take down.

      Our SCOTUS gutted the very provision of the VRA that protected average citizens from atrocities like this making it necessary for individuals to have to fight for their constitutional rights on a state by state basis. It is egregious and sadly, should send a message to SCOTUS that their decision was not only wrong, it was harmful.

      This can not stand.

  16. formdib says:

    Trump Jr’s Skittles thing.

    I don’t remember where, but I’ve totally heard it before. I’m pretty sure through social media, alt-right based, etc. I’m fairly certain that that analogy is about as original as Mrs. Trump’s convention speech, but I don’t have the specific memory for social media nor the desire to search for it to prove it.

    However, what I was really thinking about was this meme:

    There’s this whole thing about how ‘monstrous’ it is to mix Skittles and M&Ms in a bowl, being that without the predictability of the flavor to prep the palate, the result is both taste awful both because of expectation and because they don’t work together.

    Now, if analogy is where we’re going with this, wouldn’t it be more accurate to say that Trump’s platform is just a mix of Skittles and M&Ms: completely disjointed at best and likely to confuse and surprise you, and even if you get what you expect it’ll still taste awful based on its mix?

    And also by the way a few of the Skittle’s are poisoned because fascism.

    Anyway here’s Skittle’s response:

    “Skittles are candy. Refugees are people. We don’t feel it’s an appropriate analogy,” Vice President of Corporate Affairs Denise Young said in the statement. “We will respectfully refrain from further commentary as anything we say could be misinterpreted as marketing.”

    • 1mime says:

      What I have read on the skittles subject and Trump2 is that this became a meme going back to the Trayvon Martin killing. He had purchased skittles in his fated walk to the store that night. Conservatives who objected to all the outrage about his death’s circumstances used skittles as part of their subtle reference. There was also a charge of plagiarism (evidently Trump2 isn’t capable of original thought either):

      “The younger Mr. Trump was also accused of plagiarism after Joe Walsh, a conservative radio talk show host and a former Illinois congressman known for his Tea Party views, took credit for making the exact analogy last month.”

      In an election during which we could be talking seriously about so many critical issues, we’re fixated on “skittles”???? Historians will likely look back at this absurd campaign and call it the “skittles race”. Geez.

  17. 1mime says:

    Elizabeth Warren was a guest on the Rachel Maddow Show tonight. She revealed this news:

    Following the 2008 Great Recession, Congress convened a bi-partisan committee whose charge was to investigate what went wrong and develop recommendations that legislation and regulations could address. They worked extremely hard and conducted lots of interviews and performed tremendous research. Per federal law, all the investigative materials were boxed up and sealed for 5 years. That time frame has now expired and Warren is having her staff pull these boxes of records of the committee research and she found something new. The committee “did” recommend criminal charges against some of the Wall Street and banking executives – but there was no action. Warren wants to know why. Why weren’t these charges brought? She plans to find out.

    She sent two letters out: (1) to the DOJ asking why charges were not brought as recommended, and (2) to FBI Director James Comey, asking him to apply the same standard he used to justify the release of all the Clinton emails – i.e., intense public interest – to the records regarding criminal charges against those persons as recommended by the 2008 committee. She stated that it is estimated that some 12 Trillion dollars was lost in the economy as a result of the Great Recession mortgage fraud, and that in her view, this supported the standard of intense public interest as was applied to Clinton’s emails.

    This woman is tough. She is whip smart about banking law, and she knows where to look. And she calls it like it is. We don’t need less grandstanding, we need more people in Congress grandstanding over important issues like she has pursued. I wish we had 50 more just like her.

    I’m a fan. Donald Trump can thank his lucky stars he’s not running against this little Pocahontas.

  18. rulezero says:

    Not to go too off topic, but I’ve applied with a couple of agencies around Seattle. Any opinions, yea or nay?

    • flypusher says:

      About Seattle? I’ve been to the area once, found it to be gorgeous, and would definitely visit again. I was there in late winter/ early spring, so I probably saw the weather at its worst behaved (I got on several miles of walking each day). But the high cost of living on the West Coast is something that discourages me from considering living there. Hopefully those positions have pay comensurate with the costs of living.

    • 1mime says:

      Sara Robinson or TMerritt would be the locals from that area who could help…….if they see your ask….

    • johngalt says:

      Seattle is a great city. I’ve never lived there, but I have a couple of cousins who do and have been maybe a dozen times. Lots of great outdoors activities, great local beer and wine, and it’s beautiful for a good chunk of the year. On the downsides, it’s grey for six months and the cousins say that can get old, it’s quite expensive to live there, traffic is terrible, and it’s well overdue for a huge earthquake.

    • 1mime says:

      I emailed our son who has friends there who work in the city but live in a suburb in the NW area of Seattle called “Ballard”. It is more affordable and very nice for families. You may want to check it out.

    • Greg Wellman says:

      I live in Kirkland, which is across the lake from Seattle. I’d say the main concern you should have in moving to the area to take a job would be to make sure you understand what housing is going to cost. If you’re from one of America’s big cities it may not be too surprising, but if you’re not, the prices might knock your socks off. And yeah, traffic is bad. I love it here, but I telecommute. If you have any specific questions, I’d be happy to offer my viewpoint.

  19. texan5142 says:

    Love the cat story, have two myself. One is about eighteen years old, the other came from who knows where, found him outside skinny and freezing a couple years ago, he is doing well now. Have a couple dogs also, or should I say that they have me.

  20. Griffin says:

    Great Conor Friedendorf article: “How Donald Trump Puts His Own Interests Ahead of Counterterrorism”

    On Conservative Think tanks betraying the Declaration of Independence:

    And an interesting older Friedendorf article that’s food for thought given the rise of the Alt-Right. Did Leftist academics go overboard in their attack on “Color-Blindness”, as in should they have built on past successes in fighting racism rather than endorse a risky strategy of starting from scratch when it comes to combating racism?

    • 1mime says:

      I enjoyed the Conor Friedenhorf article, but it really isn’t too hard to figure out how dangerous Trump is for our national security. In the immediate aftermath of the NJ/NYC bombing events, he was already promoting the fact that “he, alone” had prophesied this would happen and furthermore, this was only the beginning. Fear/Run/Danger….I told you so!!! Contrast that to the measured remarks of Pres. Obama who urged calm and Clinton who spoke of resolve. Trump looks for some way to glorify himself in every situation – above other people, above country – He is so fixated upon himself that he will never be able to grow beyond his own circumscribed image. Humility is a powerful teacher. Evidently, Trump missed this lesson in his life. What I don’t want, is for him to learn on the job as POTUS just how much he doesn’t know and endanger an entire country in the process.

      • Creigh says:

        If Trump knew about the bombings beforehand, he should have alerted the police.

      • 1mime says:

        NO, he just “knows” these things are “pre-ordained” because of the “horrible” conditions of hate that Obama and Clinton have created….

  21. Griffin says:

    This might be the craziest and least defensible police shooting yet. Even your usual tough on crime fetishists are going to have a hard time defending this one:

    This officer needs to be made an example of and be sent to jail.

    • 1mime says:

      I’m glad you posted this, Griffin. I was just listening to an NPR discussion on this event. First, it is going to be difficult to determine exactly why the man was tased then shot unless officers were wearing cameras. Second, following the shooting, the man lay bleeding on the ground for almost two minutes before any of the (then) group of officers moved to examine the downed victim. The question was, what were these officers talking about that could have been more important than trying to save the man’s life? He didn’t have a weapon, that was known, so could it have been time spent to “sync” their stories about what went down? They also noted that this has happened many times before (victim left bleeding out with no attention or delayed attention) – Tamir Rice and others.

      The parties in the discussion acknowledged that police have to protect themselves but that when the party being detained is clearly cooperating and unarmed, this raises legitimate questions about the shooting and training of our police.

      • 1mime says:

        This ruling is going to impact the shooting in OK – and it should. At some point, men of color have tragically but understandably gotten to the point where they are willing to confront the potential for death rather than submit to more harassment. Before one criticizes the man for his choice, you might want to consider the deeper issues involved.

        I am deeply concerned about the violence in NC that ensued over the shooting of a black man there. That is not right but it is important to realize that people of color have had it. They watch and hear white nationalists – including our illustrious republican candidate for president – say atrocious things and witness one black man after another being killed, and it has to stop. Where is the concern in America for what black people have struggled against for decades? This election is focused like a laser on the plight of frustrated, unemployed and employed angry white people. Do their concerns even come close in legitimacy to the tragedies black people continually face?

    • Houston-Stay-At-Homer says:

      The story will be that he wasn’t listening to officers and he was walking back to his vehicle, and the officer assumed he was going to get a gun.

      It is a bad story, but that is what they will say.

      The audio from the helicopter is interesting. Viewing from a few hundred feet above and only seeing a big Black guy, they come to the conclusion that he’s a “bad man” and “trouble”.

      • 1mime says:

        I wonder if you – as a white man, or I – as an older white woman, with a car stopped in the middle of the road, would have been treated differently. Most likely, help would have been offered as a first response, don’t you think? We will likely never (NEVER) know exactly what was said when the white female cop rolled up upon the Black man walking from his vehicle stopped in the center of the road, nor what was said/done as the man (with hands up) approached his vehicle, was tased, then shot…And, what explanation can ever be given when a man is lying on the ground, shot and bleeding and no one bends down to see if his life can be savied. Makes me wonder if they don’t want the victim to live to tell a different story than what the crowd of police agreed. That’s not to say bad people don’t shoot at police, but what we do know is that here is yet another case of an unarmed, black male with no weapons in the vehicle (either) who was killed by police.

        If this were an isolated event, that would be one thing, but it happens again, and again, and again. The odds just don’t favor that striking a coincidence, Homer.

      • johngalt says:

        No wondering about it, 1mime. We would have been treated differently.

    • rulezero says:

      Very hard to defend this. From my sources, this is very likely a negligent discharge. There will very likely be a civil suit for failing to render aid as well.

      Luckily, the department appears to be making an attempt at transparency. Video has been released, justice department notified, etc.

      • flypusher says:

        A negligent discharge would fit with the observation I heard on an NPR interview yesterday. The question was posed as to why was there a delay in first aid, and the answer was that the officers on the scene looked (in the opinion of the interviewee) to be shocked, surprised, and perhaps a bit panicked.

        I agree that being open, as painful as that is, is the right thing to do.

      • 1mime says:

        For all of them, not just the female who pulled the trigger.

        And, training!!!! My god, a man was laying on the ground bleeding out and they were too stunned to react?! I’d have loved to have been a fly on the shoulder of just one of them listening to the conversation that ensued as they “watched”!!!a man die who had no weapon.
        My cynical nature was it would have gone like this: “Holy shit! You shot him – he’s dying – let’s get our stories straight. This is gonna “look” bad.” If they cared about the man, they would have reacted. That’s human nature. But they cared more about themselves. That is honest and open. I’m tired of giving people a pass after a man is dead. This has got to stop.

        Being open is always good when tragedy strikes, but avoiding tragedy is still the priority.

        I am anxious to read the final report on this killing and the one in NC from police authorities, but none of it will bring back the dead. And, that’s what all the anger is about.

      • 1mime says:

        Salon every now and then offers a stellar piece of thinking and writing. Such is this timely piece. It asks: “What kind of white person do you want to be?”

    • unarmedandunafraid says:

      I hate to be the contrarian here, but here goes.

      We have all seen enough “COPS” episodes to know what was being yelled to the van owner. Shouts of get down, turn around, stop, on you knees, etc. All the cops had their guns out and pointed at the victim. A large black man. Then you see him walk to his van and, it seemed to me, reach into the vehicle. He is doing something that appears to present a danger, after all there could be a gun inside. And he is doing this while directly disobeying the shouted commands. And then, from the shooters perspective, she hears the pop of a Taser.

      If you have to judge her, and she tells you she was convinced he had a gun and her fellow police officers were in danger, is she guilty of murder? How about if she says, I was scared shitless and I didn’t mean to pull the trigger?

      The above sounds like I am making excuses for shooting an unarmed man. I’m not. It’s just that when everyone, cop, crook, or plain citizen is convinced that all problems can be solved with a firearm, we get this insanity.

      I don’t have a solution except wacky ideas that get less wacky with every shooting like this.

      • If a police officer panics and does the wrong thing to an innocent person, she’s incompetent. If that panic causes an innocent man to die, then her incompetence has resulted in the loss of human life. She has ceased to be a protector of society and has become a menace to it.

        If her police department permitted her to go out in public with a deadly weapon, then they are either equally incompetent or are breathtakingly negligent. Neither is acceptable, and everyone involved needs to lose their jobs.

      • 1mime says:

        Yeah, EJ, but the ultimate irony is, this female officer (and those who gathered around her) may lose their “jobs” but the black man lost his life. Hardly a quid pro quo. This type of situation keeps repeating itself and that, in and of itself, is what is exacerbating an already tense relationship between police and black people. There are valid problems on both sides but there is no resolution and no cessation of the killings.

      • 1mime says:

        Here’s my take on what went down.

        Man’s car stalled in road…officer rolled up on him while enroute to another call (fact). Man gets out of vehicle and approaches policewoman. Words ensue…she demands id. Offers no help for stalled car. HAS NO ACTIVE DASHCAM RECORDING (FACT). She calls for back up. Several officers convene on situation. Helicopter hovers over “big bad black man” scene. Black man approaches HIS car with hands clearly up and reaches in to get ID. He is tased. Then he is shot (by accident..?!). Police officers gather around, trying to react to what has happened, knowing some serious shit is gonna happen. NO GUN IS FOUND in car or on man’s person. Meanwhile, the man bleeds out. His version of what happened will never be told. Video of the original encounter between the black man and the single female officer will never be seen. All we will know is what the officers will “say” happened.

        The man will be just as dead.

  22. WX Wall says:

    For those who enjoyed the last article about gangs in Chicago, I highly recommend the book _Gangleader For a Day_, by Sudhir Venkatesh. Venkatesh spent a year with one of the biggest gangs in Chicago in the 90s , as part of his sociology PhD work, and wrote about his experience.

    It’s fascinating and, IMHO, really goes in depth about the factors that allow gangs to take hold and thrive. It also gives a really nuanced look at the police and how they both help and detract in these communities.

    You might also enjoy the chapter entitled “Why do drug dealers live with their moms?” in Freakonomics, which was based in part on Venkatesh’s data.

    That said, I have to say, I think the author of the _Chicago Magazine_ article was getting played by his subjects. I suspect they were putting on a show for him just as much as they were for Chad from Beverly Hills or the girlfriend from Hyde Park. I felt like they sense a liberal sociologist believes beneath every criminal lies a good person who but for his environment would have been a nice, tidy version of himself. And then they played that role when they were alone together.

    There are plenty of people living in those projects also struggling to break free from their destructive surroundings who *don’t* resort to killing people or dealing drugs. My sympathy is with them. Furthermore, one of his subjects actually found a job 30 miles outside of the city, and kept it for a while, until he felt it was too dangerous to wait for the shuttle every morning. I got an idea: how about you move? You talk about wanting to break free from all those social forces *making* you become a gangbanger, and you manage to get a job (which is awesome and was probably difficult), but don’t want to move 30 miles away, which would actually get you away from those forces? Behind the swagger shown on those rap videos, where’s the actual human agency to make decisions to improve your life? As difficult as it is to uproot yourself, most people in this world have moved far greater distances for their jobs, loved ones, etc.

    Don’t get me wrong: as a liberal, I do firmly believe your environment can condemn you, and we have an obligation both from a moral and compassionate perspective to make that environment as positive (or at least as equal / equitable) as possible for everyone. But that social responsibility doesn’t nullify personal responsibility. If the author was trying to “humanize” his criminal subjects, I’d rather he “humanize” the actual humans already living there.

    /rant off

    • Stephen says:

      The article stated that Trump leads with white voters. In the bluer places like Miami and Orlando I wonder if that holds true? Certainly in North Florida it would. I think diversity tempers the old Confederacy thinking. If that is true we might see the Confederacy finally die in our time as the south as a whole becomes diverse.

    • It’ll do you a world of good to stop worrying about the polls for right now; certainly did for me. Just look at the trends and how they compare to ’12 to see where this race really stands.

      As Chris has said, congressional and Senate races are going to be a bloodbath for Republicans and here’s why. In 2012, Republicans averaged about 45% on the congressional ballot throughout all of September. Right now, they barely crack 40% and Democrats have led in every Sept poll save for one.

      Some might look at that and say that 5% isn’t much of a drop, but something to keep in mind is that Dems and Repubs were effectively tied headed into November last time and even with gerrymandering in place, Democrats still won back eight seats in the House.

      As for the presidency, Romney averaged about 45% in Sept as well and ended up, in one of the truly poetic pieces of political justice in recent memory, with 47%. Right now, Trump is averaging somewhere around 43%, so it might be appropriate to think that he’ll get somewhere around 45%. However, that’s only if you believe that his utter lack of GOTV and groundwork operations won’t hurt him at all. I don’t buy that.

      Furthermore, if you’re of the mind to believe Chris’ argument that pollsters are hedging conservatively in an admittedly unpredictable environment, that’s when you start heading into landslide territory.

      Either way, the numbers don’t foretell a close election.

      • 1mime says:

        Our very own pep squad (-; Thank you, Ryan! I loved the reminder about Romney’s 47% performance – poetic justice indeed.

      • 1mime says:

        This was interesting as a snapshot of the 2016 election.

      • 1mime says:

        Oh, and this fun fact. Obama’s current approval rating is 52%…which is an improvement from his 2012 vote percentage of 51%….much to the regret of Republicans who have done everything they could to obstruct him. Sadly, we will never know how much he could have achieved due to their efforts to shut him down, but they’ll not be able to take away from him the fact that he is ending office on the upside.

      • Fair Economist says:

        There’s an interesting point in the link Mime posted. In 1992 the average age of Republican voters was 38. Twenty-four years later it’s 58 – twenty years higher. Given that some Republicans have died in the interim, to a first approximation it means there have been no new Republicans for about 20 years.

      • 1mime says:

        Fair Economist – I was struck by the increased educational attainment of Democrats vs Republicans between ’92 and ’16, not just that they are leaning Dem but that they are better educated generally. This is positive in that it shows our educational system is more open to more people than ever before, and that the better educated typically are more liberal….(cause/result?)

      • 1mime says:

        Ryan, you’ll relate to this article…Give 4 pollsters the same data and, ta da, they come up with 4 different results! The article does a good job explaining how this happens.

      • johngalt says:

        Regarding the age of Republican-leaning voters. The graph was of the percent of voters over 50. This has gone from 38 to 58% for the GOP supporters. That’s not the same as having an average age of 58, but it’s probably not far off the right number.

      • formdib says:

        I mean, I like your pep talks and I like Chris’s perspectives, and…

        … I’m a cautious type person, and like to reduce risk. Before gains, I reduce risk. It’s my thing.

        And for me, anything north of a 1 in 5 chance of Trump being elected is way too high for comfort. It means it’s on me to take that risk seriously, rather than look for reasons to discount it.

        I am aware of an idea, to not worry about bad things happening, because a) if the bad thing doesn’t happen, you worried for nothing; and b) if the bad thing happens, you still have to deal with it despite all the worrying you already expended on it. This is particularly useful for business and management.

        But on the other hand, there’s a concept in investing, a rule of thumb of risk assessment, that says: “If you find yourself losing sleep over worry about your investment, you’ve taken on too much risk.”

        Lastly, human beings are terrible at assessing risk. Full stop.

        So should I worry, or not?

        In the end, I’d rather be pessimistic and pleasantly surprised, than optimistic and severely disappointed. Worry may be a waste of energy, but preparation isn’t. You don’t ignore an incoming hurricane just because the weather cell has a 43.8% chance as of six hours ago via 538. You make sure your canned food and bottled water is ready, and then you continue living your life because it’s less than a coin flip to happen.

        And so my sentiment is, say what you will, I still take the risk of Trump seriously.

      • @formdib: It’s not a pep talk, formdib; nothing as encouraging as that. There are plenty of challenges just around the corner, some of them ones I’d just as soon avoid if I had a choice about it, but a Trump presidency isn’t one there’s any point in being worried or concerned about.

        Do we take it seriously, as you said? Absolutely, but being serious about it doesn’t equate to being concerned, worried, pessimistic or whatever else. It just means we give it our full consideration and attention and the extent of our power in influencing the outcome.

        Do the demographic numbers suggest Trump has a chance at victory? No.

        Is Chris right when he argues that pollsters are hedging conservatively in their estimates? Take a look at the latest NBC News/SurveyMonkey poll, one that had Clinton +5, and see if the trend’s real and lasting:

        In ’12, 72% of voters were White. This poll had a sample size of Whites very close to 80%, so 72/80.

        Hispanics: 10/5

        African-Americans: 13/8

        18-24: 11/5 (!!!)

        All that said, each and every one of those deviations have margins of error that technically account for them, but again each and every one requires you to stretch those MOE to their very limits to get to a representative sample of where we were in 2012. Keep in mind that we’re going to have a more diverse electorate and less white one this November than we did four years ago as well.

        Take from that what you will.

      • formdib says:

        “Take from that what you will.”

        You’re assuming black, Hispanic, and young people will turn up.


      • @formdib: >] “You’re assuming black, Hispanic, and young people will turn up.


        Good grief, it’s like this is the automated response whenever a discussion about minorities comes up.

        I’ve said this to Homer and I’ll say it to you, formdib. Democrats and the Clinton campaign will do absolutely everything in their power to get every single one of those groups to turn out. Granted, minority turnout may slip some (arguably so, but purely for the sake of argument), but there just isn’t going to be some huge dropoff.

  23. Kenneth Devaney says:

    Off Topic,

    Can I just say I think Elizabeth Warren rocks! The link is to C-Span and her questioning the CEO of Wells Fargo. If every state had to supply the US Senate with just one EW caliber Senator what different conversations we’d be having right now.

    • RobA says:

      It was a devastating takedown. I almost felt sorry for the guy. Almost.

      • flypusher says:

        ZOMG!!! That was awesome. She needs to be cloned. She did not let that greed head evade the questions. The debate mods need to emulate that style.

        I don’t know much about finance law, but if that jerk’s bonuses and stock options can in any way and amount be legally clawed back, DO IT!

      • 1mime says:

        Here’s the problem, Fly. Members of the WF Board of Directors get stock options. So, they benefit right alongside the CEO. They are obviously not going to hold him accountable for making them money. It will take legal action that should be ordered by the Banking Committee.

      • Creigh says:

        Fly, I don’t know that much about finance law either but since those laws were probably written by the banking industry itself I wouldn’t hold out much hope for justice there.

    • 1mime says:

      Lizzie doesn’t beat around the bush, does she! You’re right, we need to clone her so every state will have their very own fearless advocate.

    • WX Wall says:

      I like EW, but this is just grandstanding. Unless she does the hard work behind the scenes (i.e. once the cameras are off) to pressure the DoJ into filing charges, or the banking regulators to threaten revoking their charter unless heads roll and victims are compensated, there is nothing that will happen.

      Let me put it this way: if I could get a $20mil payday and all I had to do was sit and be yelled at by some senator for an hour, I’d happily do it. Most people would. Hence, why this type of stuff still happens.

      • moslerfan says:

        Yes. Good explanation by Ian Welsh on this. It wasn’t about raising money from fees and penalties – that was only about $2.5m profit for the bank. It was about being able to show upbeat numbers on future business to Wall Street, meaning the executives’ stock options were worth more. So the executives collected the big options personally, and the corporation (stockholders) paid the fine. Pretty sweet.

      • 1mime says:

        Here’s the problem with that, WX Wall. She DID her job. She pulled together all the reports that substantiated her testimony and called the WF CEO out. It is now up to the gutless other members of the banking committee to vote for the next action. The Republican Party doesn’t have any trouble (House Oversight Committee, and others) with sending out subpoenas, threatening indictment, etc for anyone who displeases them. Why place that responsibility for action solely on Warren’s shoulders? Do you really think that any of the other suits/ties sitting on that dais would have done the work she did and been as forthright? No, they wouldn’t have. Let’s hold the committee responsible. That is how it is supposed to work.

      • Houston-Stay-At-Homer says:

        I’m a fan of Warren, and I admittedly don’t know much about this particular case, but cross-selling is one of the foundations of any number of relationship-based financial transactions. All banking and insurance organizations (and consultants) focus on cross-selling, and there is nothing particularly evil about it.

        If I have a commercial bank account with WF, my commercial banker is likely to get around to asking about my personal account, and if I have a checking account, they are going to ask about a savings account, and then there are different types of savings accounts that I might have.

        I would have answered the same way he did when she was calling a generally normal sales technique a “scam”. Unless these accounts somehow didn’t exist or otherwise were somehow fraudulent, I don’t think providing incentives to or even pressuring employees to cross sell is at all abnormal.

        This sounded exactly like the flip side of a GOP senator talking about the scam of global warming and any number of non-issues, so I’m hoping there is more meat here rather than Warren just blustering for the camera.

      • 1mime says:

        It is precisely because the cross-selling was done without permission of the account holders that this is such a scam. Further, setting an arbitrary goal (8) should be an incentive not a mandate for employment.

        I can agree with the bank approaching customers appropriately about other lines of service, but not as it was handled in this case. Warren was dead right that the people who organize and perpetuate these practices never seem to be held accountable.

        I have not found Warren to grandstand, but I have found her to stand up for those abuses that others seem to be comfortable ignoring. There is a difference between someone asking me if I want to open a new account and an employee opening an account without my permission in order to qualify for monthly targets, by accessing my private/personal information to which they have no right. This was wrong and I wish more of our members of Congress were as well prepared in their questioning.

        Somehow, I don’t think Lizzie Warren is going to be invited to any more WF cocktail parties (-:

      • johngalt says:

        Homer, the issue with WF is not cross-selling per se, but the pressure WF was putting on sales staff to bring home the numbers (so they could brag about this to Wall Street). To meet these pressures, WF associates created tens of thousands of accounts in clients’ names WITHOUT THEIR PERMISSION. Then they charged fees, overdrafts, penalties on accounts the clients did not know existed. In some cases, they moved money from existing accounts to the new ones, again without permission of the account holders.

        Warren was absolutely grandstanding, but there is no way senior executives should be keeping their jobs after creating a culture in which this could happen. A criminal investigation of the company and senior management is essential.

      • 1mime says:

        Please define grandstanding. If speaking with knowledge, with passion, without bullshit, is grandstanding, then maybe we need more of it in government. She didn’t lie, equivocate, and she called it exactly what it was….a PR effort to increase stock prices which principally benefited the WF executives, the Board and stockholders.

        Another problem not mentioned is that people’s credit scores were impacted due to having these “unknown” accounts. To me, this is fraud – using someone’s personal, private information to set up accounts they didn’t approve or ask for. The WR executive in charge of this program (with full knowledge of the board and CEO Stumpf) resigned and took with her over $100M in stock options and bonuses…

        Sometimes, honest indignation is not only appropriate, it is necessary. You didn’t see any of the men on that committee take the lead. And, I didn’t hear any motions to investigate such as the Chaffetz committee that goes from one witch hunt to another. This is politics at its worst. We need lots more E. Warrens and from my pov, I hope she “grandstands” a whole lot more. All of that needed to be said and it needed to be heard by the American people. Does anyone think this would be better exposed by any other approach?

    • 1mime says:

      How’d you like to be the senator who had to follow that! I’ll bet about now that Republicans are blessing their lucky stars that this little lady isn’t the Democratic candidate for POTUS this election (-;

      • Kenneth Devaney says:

        The most recent breakdown of Wells Fargo contributions to members of the Senate Banking Committee via the Sacramento Bee, though I believe their source was

        Its these relationships that leave so many Americans just assuming we are being had in almost equal parts by the regulated and the regulators. Many of these members were quiet during Elizabeth Warren’s takedown and it was scary to hear that both WF and the regulators knew about this problem since 2011 and only after almost 5 years of little progress did the govt. finally fine them.

        Meanwhile the executives (after firing all the $12-$18 hour employees involved) took their increased valuations of stock options on top of their normal bonus. So, run up the stock value by pressuring employees to break the law. Throw employees under the bus….feign ignorance and cooperation with the regulators. Charge the fine to the actual stockholders of your company and cash out your stock options now worth more because of the fraudulent activity and NO One Goes to Jail.

        I think I saw this movie before…I hope they get Matt Damon for the sequel.

      • 1mime says:

        Yep, follow the $$. Clone Elizabeth Warren and she’ll find all the dirty secrets. And, she’ll go after them, too.

        I didn’t watch the entire committee meeting, but other than Repub. David Vitter, LA, did any Republican members of the committee speak up? I may have to research c-span for this hearing in full.

        It nauseates one to see that it’s all “fixed”….

  24. Off topic but:

    I live in Florida, one state away from Georgia, where you can not do this but we are close. Open carry almost passed this past legislative session. Open carry is coming to our state. I know it is useless to even bring it up but what person thinks this is a good idea? Who the hell needs an AR-15 to go to Walmart?

    Just another thing we can thank the Republican party for! This and Stand Your Ground! Speaking of which, out local paper had a front page article about Stand Your ground. It seems one can pay a monthly fee and get instructions on exactly what to say to the cops after you killed someone. Like an insurance policy. You get instructions, a card to carry so you do not have to commit “I was afraid for my life!” to memory, and depending on the level of coverage, meaning how much the monthly fee is, legal fees paid! And “who sells these policies?” you ask!

    well, the NRA for one!

  25. flypusher says:

    I remember some older, conservative relatives being concerned a few years ago that CO was going to hell in a hand basket because of all those CA influences causing things like legal pot. Unless you can give me pharmacological evidence that pot is worse than alcohol, I’m going to keep laughing at such pearl clutching. Thing is, kids can also get into things like Jell-O shots and end up in the ER. Definitely there is a responsibility to label sweets laced with ANY sort of drug clearly, but parents, it’s still on you to keep that stuff out of reach of the kids.

    • 1mime says:

      All too often, it’s the kids keeping these “things” from the adults…….

    • RobA says:

      Prohibition of cannabis is just as absurd as prohibition if alcohol. More absurd, frankly, when you factor in the much higher likelihood of destructive behavior/death of alcohol.

      • Stephen says:

        In Florida on the ballot is a state constitutional amendment to legalize medical use of pot. I think it will pass and plan on voting yes. I would not use pot for recreation but have a libertarian bent that would allow others to make their own choice. One group fighting against this is the pharmaceutical industry. I have a brother on pain management who could get relief with pot and avoid the addictive and expensive opioids he now uses. Those drugs have bad side effects while pot has many fewer ones that are milder.

    • johngalt says:

      Kush, synthetic opioids, bathtub meth from cold medicines, concoctions from codeine-laden cough syrup, all this Breaking Bad crap…if my kid comes to me someday and says, Dad, I’m thinking about doing some drugs and you can’t talk me out of it, I will drive to a dispensary and buy him the pot myself. Nobody dies from smoking pot.

      (Clearly I’m kidding, but only just.)

  26. Stephen says:

    This was published in the NYT over the weekend. There really is nothing new under the sun.

    Trump likes to play the strongman role. The heroes wrote about in this piece are the real deal. We are facing the same moral question our grand and great grand parents faced in the thirties. They mainly failed the test. Can we do better?

    • flypusher says:

      A great man like Sousa Mendes dies in poverty, and a despicable excuse for a human being such as Trump lives in tacky luxury and has a chance to be President. I wonder about the reality of intelligent life on the planet- so many stupid choices people make.

      • Stephen says:

        We live in a fallen world. If you read the Bible you see many people have wondered the same thing through out the ages. I have lost promotions because I refused to engage and agree with the bigotry of bosses which is nothing to what those people paid that are in the article. There is a price for doing right .The choices are not so much stupidity as a matter of the heart.There are good people everywhere as are bad people. If you believe the Bible and I do in the end there is going to be a final balancing of the books. So I do not lose heart.

      • 1mime says:

        “In the end there will be a balancing of the books…”

        I’m pretty concerned about the damage that is being done in the “here and now”, Stephen. There are many wonderful people, and there are the “others” …. I am worried about our world because too many people are finding value in beliefs I cannot accept but have little chance to escape.

      • 1mime says:

        Here is a prime example of what can go wrong (before it can go right). Consider that partisan politics is actually interrupting critical research trials for infectious diseases and others at critical points in their research cycle. What kind of politics can justify doing something like this this research that can help so many people – now. There are some things that are simply inviolate. Disease research and intervention are at the top. Shame on Republicans for playing games with this funding and using it as a tool to force other concessions in budget negotiations. Shame!

      • RobA says:

        “I have lost promotions because I refused to engage and agree with the bigotry of bosses”

        Stephan, Ive read enough of your posts to know that you’re a good person, and I believe you are sincere. But the vast majority of bigotry and deplorable behavior that goes on today COMES FROM the religious right. Not only that, but that behavior is done IN THE NAME OF their religion.

        There’s nothing “fallen” about this world that getting rid of religious extremism wouldn’t cure. And I mean the entire spectrum of religious extremism, from detonating bombs in crowded places on the one end, to legislating ones own personal beliefs on the other. It all needs to go.

      • Griffin says:

        Rob, if there’s anything the Alt-Right and other latter day fascists have proven it’s that Religion is not necessary to maintaining or supporting hierarchical systems based on bigotry, even if religious fundamentalism is the most common cover or version of it.

      • Stephen says:

        @RobA I am not naive. Plenty of people think and do deplorable things who are religious. But also most of the good done has it’s roots in people of faith. The world is not black and white but many shades of Grey. Good and evil are often mixed together in individuals. And we have to always choose the lesser of the evil when we pick leaders. We have to be humble many times if we want to tease out truth. Considering facts and people who move us outside our comfort zone. Despite what you think religion has been a force for great good as well evil. Evil in religion has been defeated in the ranks of religion by those following the good. At one time being against slavery was extreme. Being against infanticide was at one time extreme. Giving women the vote was once extreme. People can be extreme if they are religious or not. But religion had an outside influence on changing these and other evils . Getting rid of religion is not going to stop people from doing bad things. Indeed religion restrains far more bad behavior than being a cover for it. Christianity has been the major force for social change in our history. You have a right to your paradigm. I just do not share it.

      • Creigh says:

        Stephen, RobA, I’m not sure either of you has established cause vs. effect conclusively.

  27. Kenneth Devaney says:

    I thought the article on facism illustrative. Incoherent policy is the definition and resistance to modernity is just a symptom. One example, the negation of welfare but simultaneously clinging and protecting Social Security and then the killer quote:

    New-media guru and New York University professor Clay Shirky was channeling Nolte when he observed on Twitter that “Trump has promised 40% of the country what they’ve always wanted: a racist welfare state.” It was never the welfare state that is the problem for them; it was the beneficiaries.

    That sums up and defines “the deplorables”. It accurately defines the Trump base.

  28. Fair Economist says:

    I found the linked essay on fascism to be very off. It takes one common aspect of fascism – resistance to modernity – and treats it as defining even though that’s also characteristic of many other movements not even remotely fascist, like traditionalist churches. I’d say the defining characteristics of fascism are conservative ideology, nationalism, and – most significantly – utter, brutal ruthlessness. Trump could be that, and is certainly signaling to the alt-right that he will be, but the article makes a poor case.

    • Stephen says:

      For what it is worth I agree with your assessment of the article on fascism. My view is the main thing about fascism is a focus on nationalism, a dividing of us versus them. Of thinking all others are sub human with no rights or worthy of consideration. Any thing that advances the interest of us is morally ok and should be pursued with ruthless efficiency. It completely runs counter to the ideas of our country. Our union and nationality is allegiance to ideas without regard to ethnicity or tribal affiliation. One of the main ideas is adherence to laws instead of simple rulership, universally applied to all. This time is similar to what was going on in the thirties . People respond to it with a FDR or a Hitler. It worries me that so many people are looking to a strongman to rescue them instead of banding together and solving their problems themselves. I do not know of any place in history where the strongman thing ended well.

    • Griffin says:

      Yeah I was surprised by how weak the article was in calling Trump a fascist, especially since there was so much more ammunition lying around. If opposing globalization and immigration is all it takes then there are alot of left-wing fascist too, alongside the reactionaries. Other common traits of fascism Trump supports: tribalistic politics, militarism and imperialism, palingenetic ethnic-nationalism, right-wing populism, scapegoating racial/national/religious minorities, admiration of authoritarianism, conspiracy theorism, cronyist economics. Traits he lacks: he has yet to go full totalitarian “the nation is all” or openly want to all-out destroy elections. He’s less our Mussolini and more our wannabe Putin.

      • 1mime says:

        Griffin (and others interested in Karl Marx), this is an interesting article that takes a look at this man’s work in the 19th century setting in which he lived. I think you will appreciate it – even if you disagree with it.

        “Does Karl Marx still matter?…..What relevance can his life and work have in a world where nearly every socialist party long ago made its peace with capitalism, and at a time when his writings are read far more by academics than by the workers he longed to liberate? ”

      • Griffin says:

        Very interesting read Mime. In econ we still use some of Marx’s work, particularly his observance that what we today call the “business cycle” was not a temporary phenomenon but a permanent feature of capitalism. To see more of where he went right and wrong:

        Even as a pretty staunch anti-communist I can recognize Marx was a brilliant (albeit flawed) academic. However people who still hew too closely to his work today, the Orthodox Marxists, are more a religion than a science in my opinion.

      • Fair Economist says:

        Marx was a groundbreaking thinker, although not always consistent or accurate. Mostly he’s just been left behind. If you look at the calls for action in the Communist Manifesto, about 80% have either been done, turned out wrong, or are just not issues anymore. Even his analysis of class structure is pretty much defunct – we still have classes, but not really “peasants” and “laborers” anymore. He does have one big observation that’s relevant now – that the collection of wealth by the very wealthy will lead to a collapse in demand and chronic depression. That one long looked wrong but now it’s looking like it was only temporarily forestalled by certain specific events in the first half of the 20th century – the world wars, midcentury growth, and high progressive taxation.

      • 1mime says:

        Fair Economist – A question. How can one state (DE) in our United States offer itself up as a “tax haven” purely for corporate registration to save taxes while depriving other states which are the actual domicile of the corporation?? Obviously, this is “legal” but has it ever been challenged? (I assume with your name you have a “working knowledge” of finance…)

    • unarmedandunafraid says:

      I agree the 3 defining characteristics of fascism are conservative ideology, nationalism, and – most significantly – utter, brutal ruthlessness.

      And surprise.

      The 4 defining characteristics of fascism, um, never mind.

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