Friday, July 24, 2009

What’s Wrong with this Picture?

After the President said that the Cambridge police Department had acted “stupidly” in arresting distinguished Harvard professor Louis Gates in his own home, he made more conciliatory statements today that both the white police seargent and professor Gates had “overreacted.” The President is correct, politically, in dialing this back.

But here’s what I don’t get. Did anyone see the Massachusetts police unions press conference today? (See picture below.) I happen to think the picture is at variance with the AP story lead on this, by Bob Salsberg, which was widely distributed in the mainstream media:
“CAMBRIDGE, Mass. — A multiracial group of police officers today stood with the white officer who arrested a prominent black Harvard scholar and asked President Barack Obama and Gov. Deval Patrick to apologize for comments the union leaders called insulting.”
Multiracial group of police officers” –– really?

When the camera pans out to include the entire group, there are a whole lot of ethnic white middle-aged men (sorry, but these guys come across as Archie Bunkers to me) with two African American men and two women that I could see –– tokenism at its best. One of the women was hidden behind a wall of plump beer-and-donuts white guys, and the other was a P.R. step ‘n fetchit responsible for tapping microphones and making sure everyone exited stage right. None of the black officers or women onstage spoke or were introduced as leaders in their organizations.

Is it me, or was this lineup of Massachusetts' finest long on obesity and white ethnic homogeneity and short on diversity and promotional opportunities for women and minorities?

Chris Matthews (mixed feelings about this guy) made an awful analogy, when he said had it been a black police officer and the “GREAT” white Henry Kissinger who was arrested in his home, the black officer would have gotten all kinds of grief for treating such a “distinguished” academic in this way.

Not from me, he wouldn’t. My hope is, the black officer would be arresting Kissinger on an order of extradition to a ballsy country, like Spain, or to the World Court at the Hague, which the Obama Administration had rejoined as signatory, to be tried for war crimes.

The black officer might not get an invite to the White House for a beer with the President, but he wouldn’t lack for invitations from those of us who believe no one is above the law.

The Dumbass Hall of Fame

Our newest inductee of this special and elite section of the corner is Peter J. Riga of Houston, Texas. In an inspiring work of pure genius appearing in today's Chicago Tribune, our newest Hall of Famer pens that
History is both revealing and obscuring. Walter Cronkite was a superb TV anchorman--calm, collected and intelligent. The one time he deviated from his position was a disaster. When he came back from Vietnam and told the American people that Vietnam was a stalemate that we could not win, that was a turning point of public opinion. Even then-President Lyndon Johnson said that view from Cronkite lost America the conflict in Vietnam. That was precisely when we were on the verge of victory in Vietnam and Cronkite turned public opinion massively against the war, which then became unsustainable for the president. In other words, Cronkite was indirectly responsible for our defeat in Vietnam, which history will show.
Mr. Riga, I have little to add to your perceptive grasp of history except to point out the obvious, that you are a pathetic and delusional little man.

And oh, by the way...


Thursday, July 23, 2009

Those Obamas were clever birth conspirators

Imagine the depth of the conspracy, when the Honolulu papers printed the phony birth announcement!!

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Matthews Exposes Whacko Birther Wingnuts

I'm not a big Chris Matthews fan, but every so often he's pitch perfect, as in this instance:

Anyone up for the circus, free of charge? Look up your local Repugnant town hall meeting and show up incognito, which means dressing like Joe the Plumber with an American flag in each hand. Be sure to bring a copy of President Obama's birth certificate. When the Birthers disrupt the meeting screaming that Obama is not a citizen, stand up and demand to be heard by waving your American flags. As soon as the dumbass Birthers cede you the microphone, proceed to mock them by producing the President's birth certificate and reading its contents aloud. Then call for all red-blooded Americans to stand up and recite the Pledge of Allegiance while you make your getaway.

One more thing. Today, Lou Dobbs of CNN -- aka Faux News Lite -- picked up on this garbage, venting his ill-concealed racism by calling President Obama "undocumented."

Sotomayor and the 2nd

One opinion that the Repubs seized on in the Sotomayor hearings was Maloney v. Cuomo (link). In that decision, she authored an opinion that was absolutely correct in holding that the Heller 2nd Amendment decision did not apply to the states. If you are completely conversant with 14th Amendment incorporation, or aren't interested in legal geekiness, you may stop reading now.

In The Paper Chase, the imposing Prof. Kingsfield tells his first year students that "You come in here with a skull full of mush, and you leave thinking like a lawyer." I used to think that was crap until I realized that I think like a lawyer. That is what makes explaining 14th Amendment incorporation, which to me seems so easy and obvious, seem so difficult.

First of all, something that there is NO argument about. That FACT is that the so-called Bill of Rights applies BY ITS OWN TERMS only to FEDERAL matters. We have wacko sites that give you headlines that "Sotomayor Ruled That States Do Not Have to Obey Second Amendment." Yup. That woman hates you gun freaks who demand the right to vaporize deer with shoulder mounted rocket launchers. The LAW on this, which Judge Sotomayor followed, was absolutely correct.

On incorporation--the first 10 amendments apply only against the FEDERAL GOVERNMENT. Beginning in the late 19th century, the Supreme Court decided that certain rights described in the Bill of Rights could be "incorporated" or made applicable against the states. Never has the Supreme Court decided so w/the 2nd--that was not an issue given that DC was federal and the 2nd applied.

The question is not whether Heller is binding but rather whether individual gun ownership is a fundamental right that should be applied against the states.