Thursday, March 5, 2015

How the white imagination of a black threat continues to make justice elusive

Kendrec McDade, Amadou Diallo, Tamir Rice
As long as the law allows white men to act on their imagination of a black threat of violence, justice will remain a rare, elusive occurrence in America. It cannot and should not be enough for police or citizens to simply believe, based not on facts, but the possibilities of their own imagination, that they may be in grave danger at the hands of black boys and men who actually posed no threat to them whatsoever.

The threat must be verifiably real, true, actual, factual, or it is, no matter how police unions or the members of the press who do their bidding want to spin it, unjust, through and through, to threaten, assault, or murder based on the disproven reality that a threat could've existed because your imagination said so.

The reality is that Kendrec McDade, a completely unarmed and innocent all-state athlete posed absolutely no threat to the police or anyone else the day Pasadena, CA police shot him over and over again after imagining that they both saw and heard Kendrec shoot at them. They only found a cell phone. The white imagination of a black threat was enough in our justice system.

This is not OK.

The reality is that Amadou Diallo, a completely unarmed, hardworking man on his way home from work, posed absolutely no threat to the police who shot at him 41 times on the doorstep of his own home. They only found a wallet. The white imagination of a black threat was enough in our justice system.

This is not OK.  READ MORE

My Letter to Editor refuting conservative economics - printed! by NBBooksFollow

One week ago, BeninSC posted a diary noting that the Republicans are "a party of Orwellian deception" and urging us to
...shine the biggest light on the superiority of Democratic morality. Of doing unto others as we would wish to be done unto. Of respecting the challenges others less fortunate face. Of fighting injustices toward women, toward children, toward our armed forces, toward our workers, toward the elderly, toward minorities. Toward VOTERS! Always, ALWAYS talk the morality of our politics, of our humanity. It’s the biggest, best argument we can make, and it resonates - LOUDLY -  beyond every boundary drawn on a map.
But here's something I find almost as frustrating as Republican deception: the unwillingness or inability of Democrats to smash Republican lies and myths with simple American history. One of Karl Rove's tenets is to attack your enemy's strength. And I think that is exactly what we should do. I think we should start calling Republicans' and conservatives' adoration of "market economics" what it actually is - the glorification of selfishness, the celebration of exactly some of the worst aspects of human nature. It is not Christian, nor is it American. And their hatred of a strong central government is neo-Confederate, plain and simple. Every statement a Rick Perry or a Newt Gingrich makes about secession and states rights should be flung in our foes' faces as treasonous and seditious. I'm tired of playing nice with Republicans and conservatives who openly say stuff like bi-partisanship is like date rape - with Democrats as the victim.
Well, about two weeks ago, I happened to be in a restaurant in Yanceyville, NC, about 25 miles from my home. It's the seat of the next county over, typically southern conservative Caswell County, which I am proud to say my wife was on a local phone bank here in heavily Democratic Orange County that helped swing Caswell into the Democratic column in 2008. I picked up the most recent copy of the local paper, the Caswell Messenger, and my eye settled on a letter to the editor from some local conservative named Mr. R., raving that Obama's proposal for free college tuition was evil government redistribution, theft, blah, blah - the usual wrong-wing crap.

Now, ever since it became clear to me around 2009 or so, that President Obama was unwilling to buck Wall Street and fight for policies that would dramatically shift the balance between capital and labor, I have been reading a lot of American history in an attempt to find the answers to two questions: What is a republic supposed to be? And, what policies of political economy should a republic follow? In other words, is there a republican political economy? As distinguished from a plutocracy, or oligarchy, or monarchy.

So, I determined to take the LTE by Mr. R. and write my own letter to the editor refuting him point by point, including some of what I've learned the past six years. A couple days after I faxed and emailed my letter, I received an email from the editor asking me to shorten it quite a bit. It was originally just under 1,400 words, and I was able to trim it to about 900. I received another email, apologizing that they were looking for letters of about 500 words. So, I got it down to about 600 words, and emailed it to the editor, noting that I did not feel I could cut it any further. READ MORE

Sharia law: North Carolina Republicans empower magistrates to refuse to marry blacks, Jews, gays

Not on Magistrate Smith's watch, you don't.
North Carolina Republicans' latest wedge issue gambit, Senate Bill 2 (An Act to Allow Magistrates [...] to Recuse Themselves From Performing Duties Related to Marriage Ceremonies Due to Sincerely Held Religious Objection), passed the state Senate Wednesday on a near party-line vote (Democratic senators Clark and Ford joining 30 Republicans voting aye, and Republicans Alexander and Tarte voting no with 14 Dems). Passage in the House, and signing by Governor Pat McCrory (R), are widely expected to follow shortly.

In North Carolina, civil weddings are performed by county magistrates - bottom-rung appointed officers of the court whose other duties include such mundane tasks as hearing misdemeanor cases, presiding in small claims court, administering oaths, setting bail, accepting guilty pleas, and issuing subpoenas. These are undemanding but good-paying jobs (requiring no post-secondary education, and paying as much as $57,000).

When a Federal court decision made same-sex marriage legal in North Carolina last October, eight NC county magistrates resigned their positions rather than face the prospect of violating their religious beliefs by marrying same-sex couples. It should be easy enough for reasonable people across the political spectrum to agree that those resignations were the right thing to do. If you cannot reconcile your personal beliefs with your job duties, you need to find a different job. An orthodox Jew working at an oyster bar, a Sikh in a slaughterhouse, a Quaker in the Marines, a Catholic in a Planned Parenthood clinic - clearly none have a right to expect their employers to accommodate their sincerely held religious objections, and so all need to re-evaluate their career options. It's no different for civil servants, nor should it be.

Rather than allow such an obvious solution to suffice, Republicans are rushing to turn the issue into a social conservative rallying point in the run-up to the 2016 elections in North Carolina (a state where voters' opinions are evenly divided, with 44% approving of same sex marriage and 47% disapproving, with a 3% margin of error).

Phil Berger (R), president pro tem of the state senate and SB2's primary sponsor, casts his argument for the bill in First Amendment terms:
“If we’re not about holding up the rights guaranteed by our constitution in this body, then all the other stuff eventually is not worth very much,” he said. “We’re not saying that the First Amendment outweighs any other right that might exist. We’re saying there should be an accommodation when there is a conflict.”

SB2 would permit a magistrate with a "sincerely held religious objection" to recuse him- or herself from performing weddings by the simple act of so notifying the chief district court judge. No examination of the sincerity of that belief (such as would-be conscientious objectors face under Selective Service rules) would be required. Neither would the recusing magistrate be required to state exactly what it is he objects to: same-sex marriage (which many fundamentalist Christian denominations hold to be a sin), mixed-race marriage (regarding which the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints' prophet, Warren Jeffs, proclaimed "If you marry a person who has connections with a Negro, you would become cursed"), the re-marriage of a divorcee (which the Catholic Church holds to be a sin), the marriage of a Christian and a Jew (sometimes frowned upon by both religions), marriage between cousins (legal in North Carolina but proscribed by the Catholic church), or what have you. Proponents of the bill argue that it is therefore not discriminatory, as it does not target a specific class of persons. As well, they continue, the law is not discriminatory because recusal would bar the magistrate from performing any marriages for a period of six months...barring him from easily cherry-picking the marriages he will and will not perform. In an further paroxysm of zeal for 'fair play,' SB2 goes even further, permitting the reinstatement of any magistrate who resigned his position following the Federal court decision rendering same-sex marriage legal in North Carolina, with no loss of service time for purposes of determining the magistrate's eligibility to collect a pension.

Judging by news reports, outnumbered opponents of SB2 offered all the right arguments during debate on the bill:  READ MORE

Former State Department officials explain why the Clinton email 'scandal' is ridiculous

Hillary Clinton, then the secretary of state, checking
her PDA upon leaving Malta for Tripoli, Libya, in 2011.
According to the State Department, Hillary Clinton's use of a personalized email address during her time as secretary of state was no secret.

"The State Department has long had access to a wide array of Secretary Clinton's records — including emails between her and Department officials with state.gov accounts," State Department Deputy Spokesperon Marie Harf said in an email to Business Insider.

Business Insider asked the State Department about Clinton's use of private email in response to a New York Times article published Monday evening that said Clinton's use of a personal address "may have violated federal requirements that officials' correspondence be retained as part of the agency's record." The Times further reported "her aides took no actions to have her personal emails preserved on department servers at the time."

Some observers have cast the story as a "scandal" for Clinton, who is widely expected to run for president in 2016. Clinton has already faced accusations she is insufficiently transparent, and the email story has already been tied to that narrative. However, Clinton's team pointed to former State Department officials who defended her use of a personal email address and dismissed potential concerns. READ MORE

Sunday, March 1, 2015

THE WORLD AT WAR (WORLD WAR ll

This war is a very important lesson of history,  since it shows what will happen if we don't stand up for our rights and allow truth to be smothered by propaganda,  for the short term objective of preserving the peace.  Even if you could trust the people who to whom you surrender your freedoms in exchange for security and you cannot,  there will be no way you can resist when those powers of state are handed over to the successors.  As Benjamin Franklin once said:  "Those who would surrender their freedoms for security,  will get neither peace nor security".  From the Caesars to Hitler,  Mussolini and Stalin,  history is rife with examples of how totalitarian systems abuse the people with their absolute powers.  Be warned!






War in the east SOVIET STORM series 18 parts (play list)


WORLD WAR II - BATTLEFIELD SERIES (30 parts) (Series 3 is about the Viet Nam War and is left out of this presentation)
Battlefield is a documentary series initially shown in 1994 that explores the most important battles fought primarily during the Second World War and the Vietnam War.[1] The series employs a novel approach in which history is described by detailed accounts of major battles together with background and contextual information. READ MORE
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A collection of world war ll videos

Look Ma, it's Frosty the Republican Sex Scandal Man!

Quick,  gimme a quarter,  I wanna nice ice cold and refreshing Republican Sex Scandal,  fresh from the freezer of the "Family Values / Christian Nation" truck ding-a-ling!

READ IT HERE

Adam Kuhn(R) Chief of Staff to GOP U.S. Rep Steve Stivers (R-OH)
resigned abruptly after a former porn actress posted an explicit photo
of his penis online. [1]

Vance McAllister, Representative (R-LA), married and the father of five,
was caught on surveillance camera deeply kissing a married staffer.

Louisiana Republican Governor Bobby Jindal, Chairman of the
Louisiana Republican Party Roger Villere and House Republican Party
leader Eric Cantor all asked McAllister to resign. In response he stated
he would not seek re-election in 2016.[2][3]

 Ken Mehlman (R), manager of President George W. Bush's (R)
campaign for Re-election and chairman of the Republican National
Committee, which had proposed a constitutional amendment to ban
gay marriage, came out in August 2010 and admitted that he was gay.[4]
In an interview, journalist Marc Ambinder noted that Mehlman's roles
with the RNC and the Bush campaign "coincided with the Republican
Party's attempts to exploit anti-gay prejudices and cement the
allegiance of social conservatives".[5] Mehlman stated that he deeply
regretted his role in the campaign's push for a constitutional
amendment that would have banned gay marriage.[6]

Ryan Loskarn (R), chief of staff to U.S. Senator Lamar Alexander (R-
TN), was found dead while awaiting trial on charges of possessing and
distributing child pornography.[7]

Thad Viers (R), three-term South Carolina state representative,
withdrew as a candidate for the U.S. Congress in January 2012 after he
had been arrested on charges of harassing a 28-year-old woman
described as an ex-girlfriend. He was released on a $5000 bond and
subsequently withdrew from the race citing "personal reasons".[10]
[11]

Herman Cain, 2012 Republican presidential candidate, was accused of
sexual harassment by several women[12][13] including Sharon Bialek,
Karen Kraushaar, and having a 13-year affair with Ginger White.[14]
[15] Donna Donella also reported possible inappropriate behavior.[16]
These accusations eventually caused him to suspend his run for the
presidential nomination.[17]

Chris Lee, Representative (R-NY), resigned hours after a news report
that the married Congressman had sent a shirtless picture of himself
flexing his muscles to a woman via Craigslist, along with flirtatious
e-mails.[22] He did not use a pseudonym or a false e-mail address, but
relied on his congressional e-mail for all communication. (2011)

Mark Souder, Representative (R-IN), a staunch advocate of abstinence
and family values,[23][24] resigned to avoid an ethics investigation
into his admitted extramarital affair with a female staffer. Famously, he
and she had made a public video in which they both extolled the
virtues of sexual abstinence. (2010)[25][not in citation given][26][27]

Republican National Committee fired an administrator for her role in
allowing $2,000 to be spent for a fundraiser at Club Voyeur that
included bondage and topless dancers, (2011)[30]

Tom Ganley, Representative (R-OH) and candidate for the U.S. House of
Representatives in 2010, was indicted on seven counts of sexual
imposition with a woman he met at a Tea Party Rally.[31] Charges were
dropped when the woman refused to continue action. The married
father of three has one other sex charge pending.[32][33]

David Petraeus (R) resigned as the director of the CIA in November
2012 after an FBI investigation uncovered that he had an extramarital
affair with his biographer, Paula Broadwell.[34][35]

Mark Sanford (R), Governor of South Carolina, told his wife that he was
hiking the Appalachian Mountain Trail while he actually traveled to
Argentina to visit his mistress. See Mark Sanford disappearance and
extramarital affair.[36]

Chip Pickering, Representative (R-MS): on July 16, 2009, it was
announced that his wife had filed an alienation of affection lawsuit
against a woman with whom Chip allegedly had an affair.[37] The
lawsuit claimed the adulterous relationship ruined the Pickerings'
marriage and his political career. (2009)[38]

Samuel B. Kent, Federal District Judge in Texas appointed by George H.
W. Bush in 1990, was accused of sexually harassing two female
employees. He was impeached for abusing his authority and
imprisoned for 33 months for obstruction of justice.[39] (2009)


John Ensign, Senator (R-NV), resigned his position as chairman of the
Senate Republican Policy Committee on June 16, 2009, after admitting
he had an affair with the wife of a close friend, both of whom were
working on his campaign.[40] Under investigation, he then resigned
his Senate seat 20 months early. (2011)[41] In 1998, Senator Ensign had
called for President Bill Clinton (D) to resign after admitting to sexual
acts with Monica Lewinsky. (2009)[42]

Vito Fossella, Representative (R-NY), was arrested for drunken driving.
Under questioning, the married Congressman and father of three
admitted to an affair with Laura Fay that produced a daughter. (2008)
[44]

Randall L. Tobias (R), Deputy Secretary of State and former "AIDS Czar"
appointed by George W. Bush, stated that U.S. funds should be denied
to countries that permitted prostitution.[46] He resigned on April 27,
2007, after confirming that he had been a customer of Deborah Jeane
Palfrey, the DC Madam.[47]

David Vitter, Senator (R-LA), took over the House seat of former
Congressman Robert Livingston, who resigned in 1999 following
revelations of an extramarital affair. At the time, Vitter stated, "I think
Livingston's stepping down makes a very powerful argument that (Bill)

Clinton should resign as well...."[48] Vitters' name was then
discovered in the address book of the DC Madam Deborah Jeane
Palfrey. (2007)[49]

Larry Craig, Senator (R-ID), pleaded guilty to disorderly conduct
following his arrest in a Minneapolis airport men's room in June 2007,
on a charge of lewd conduct. Senator Craig had previously stated that
"people already know that Bill Clinton is a bad boy—a naughty boy."
(2007)[50] (aka: Larry "Wide stance" Craig)

Mark Foley, Representative (R-FL), resigned his House seat when
accused of sending sexually explicit e-mails to teenage male
congressional pages. He was replaced by Tim Mahoney. (2006)[51]

Brian J. Doyle, Deputy Press Secretary of the Department of Homeland
Security was indicted for seducing what he thought was a 14-year-old
girl on the Internet; she was actually a sheriff's deputy. On November
17, 2006, he was sentenced to 5 years in prison, 10 years of probation,
and was registered as a sex offender.[52]

Jack Ryan, Senate candidate (R-IL): during sealed divorce proceedings
in 2004, his wife Jeri Ryan accused him of forcing her to go to public
sex clubs and described one as "a bizarre club with cages, whips and
other apparatus hanging from the ceiling".[53] Ms. Ryan is better
known as Seven of Nine from the TV show Star Trek: Voyager.[54]



(If she can't get you excited all by herself,  you probably need to be
buried)

Don Sherwood, Representative (R-PA), failed to win re-election
following revelations of a five-year extramarital affair with Cynthia Ore,
who accused him of physically abusing her. (2004)[55]

David Dreier, Representative (R-CA), voted against a number of gay
rights proposals, but was outed concerning his relationship with his
chief of staff. (2004)[56] He is featured in the 2009 documentary film
Outrage.

Steven C. LaTourette, Representative (R-OH), was elected in 1994 and
had voted to impeach Bill Clinton for the Lewinsky scandal. He himself
had a long-term affair with his chief of staff, Jennifer Laptook, while he
was married. He married Laptook after his divorce. (2003)[57]

Strom Thurmond, Senator (R-SC), noted segregationist, fathered a
child, Essie Mae Washington-Williams, with a 15-year-old African
American who was employed by the Thurmond family. (1925; made
public in 2003)[58]

Jeff Gannon a.k.a. James Dale Guckert, a.k.a. "Bulldog", was admitted
to White House press conferences as a journalist without proper
vetting, and was allowed to ask such sympathetic questions that The
Daily Show referred to him as "Chip Rightwingenstein of the Bush
Agenda Gazette". Records show he was admitted to the White House
numerous times even when there were no press conferences. He later
admitted to being a $200-an-hour gay prostitute who had advertised
himself on a series of websites with names such as
hotmilitarystud.com.[59] (2005)[60]

Ed Schrock, Representative (R-VA), announced he would abort his
2004 attempt for a third term in Congress after allegedly being caught
on tape soliciting sex from a male prostitute after having aggressively
opposed various gay-rights issues in Congress, such as same-sex
marriage and gays in the military.[61]

Henry Hyde, Representative (R-IL): in 1998, Salon.com stated that from
1965 to 1969, Hyde conducted an extramarital sexual affair with a
married woman who had three children from her marriage. Hyde, who
was 41 years old and married when the affair occurred, admitted to the
affair in 1998, describing the relationship as a "youthful
indiscretion".The revelation of this affair took place as Hyde was
spearheading the impeachment hearings of President Bill Clinton over
the Monica Lewinsky scandal.[68]

Newt Gingrich, Representative (R-GA) and leader of the Republican
Revolution of 1994,[69] resigned from the House after admitting in 1998
to having had an affair with his intern while he was married to his
second wife, and at the same time he was leading the impeachment of
Bill Clinton for perjury regarding an affair with his intern Monica
Lewinsky. (1998)[70][71]

Robert Livingston, Representative (R-LA), called for the resignation of
Bill Clinton and when his own extramarital affairs were leaked, his wife
urged him to resign and urge Clinton to do likewise.(1998)[72][73]

Bob Barr, Representative (R-GA), had an affair while married. Barr had
been the first lawmaker in either chamber to call for Clinton's
resignation due to the Lewinsky affair. Barr lost a primary challenge
less than three years after the impeachment proceedings.[74]

Dan Burton, Representative (R-IN), a combative critic of the
Clinton/Lewinsky affair, admitted that he had fathered a child out of
wedlock.(1998)[75]

Helen Chenoweth-Hage, Representative (R-ID), aggressively called for
the resignation of Bill Clinton, and admitted to her own six-year affair
with a married rancher during the 1980s.[76]

Ken Calvert, Representative (R-CA), champion of the Christian
Coalition, once said "We can't forgive what occurred between the
President and Lewinsky." He was arrested for soliciting a prostitute for
oral sex in his car. (1993)[77] [5]

Robert Packwood, Senator (R-OR), resigned his office after 29 women
came forward with claims of sexual harassment, abuse, and assaults.
His denials of any wrongdoing were eventually contradicted by his
own diaries boasting of his sexual conquests. (1995)[78]

Donald "Buz" Lukens, Representative (R-OH), resigned before facing
an investigation that he fondled a female Washington elevator
operator.[81] (1990)

Dan Burton, Representative (R-IN): In 1995 speaking of the then-recent
affairs of Republican Robert Packwood and the unfolding affair of
Democrat Bill Clinton Burton stated "No one, regardless of what party
they serve, no one, regardless of what branch of government they
serve, should be allowed to get away with these alleged sexual
improprieties...." In 1998 Vanity Fair printed an article detailing an affair
which Burton himself had in 1983 which produced a child. Before
publication Burton admitted to fathering a son with a former state
employee.[88]

Dan Crane, Representative, (R-IL), was censured July 20, 1983, in the
Congressional Page sex scandal for having sex with a young
congressional page. (1983)[89]

Jon Hinson, Representative (R-MS), was charged with oral sodomy of a
male Library of Congress employee. (1981)[90]

Robert Bauman, Representative (R-MD), was charged with attempting
to solicit sex from a 16-year-old male prostitute. (1980)[91]

Thomas Evans, Representative (R-DE), went golfing in Florida with
nude model and lobbyist Paula Parkinson, who suggested her lobbying
techniques were "tactile".[92]

John Schmitz, Representative (R-CA), leader of the ultra-conservative
John Birch Society,[102] admitted to having a second family, but
refused to accept or support the two children he produced who
became wards of the state.[103]

Warren Harding, President (R): While married to his wife Florence, he
supposedly had affairs with Carrie Phillips and Nan Britton. (1921–
1923). After Harding's death, Britton claimed in a best-selling 1927
book, The President's Daughter, that her daughter had been fathered
by Harding while he was a U.S. senator, although this was never
proven by paternity testing.[111]

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NEW YORK CITY HOUSING COURT TUTORIAL

More lawyers need to make instructional/explanatory law videos.  Because the more people know about a law,  the better the laws protect your rights.  For example,  just imagine if no one knew about freedom of speech?  Your right to speak freely would be challenged by anyone who dissented to it,  making it impossible to exercise free speech.  Laws get passed to protect you,  but how can they do so effectively if you don't have a clue they exist,  let alone how to advantage yourself of them.

Eleven part playlist (plays in sequence)