Morning Links

Thursday, August 4th, 2011

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40 Responses to “Morning Links”

  1. #1 |  SJE | 

    It doesnt take balls to kowtow to established interests and prejudices, especially when you are the beneficiary. It takes balls to stand up against others to do the right thing, even when it could hurt you in the polls.

  2. #2 |  pegr | 

    Um, so what happened to free association? You have to give up your rights to be a school teacher?

  3. #3 |  SJE | 

    Re: Officer suspended for a year for her third DUI “Apart from a six-day suspension in 2006 because of a domestic issue in which alcohol was a factor, respondent essentially has an unblemished disciplinary record during her career.”

    Well, its hard to get anything but an unblemished record if you keep getting professional courtesy.

  4. #4 |  Mario | 

    Teachers also cannot have a nonwork-related website that allows exclusive access with a current or former student.

    How could this apply to Facebook? I would presume the parents of these students monitor their child’s online activities, so how could anyone possibly establish “exclusive” access to the current or former student?

  5. #5 |  JS | 

    SJE#3, very well said!

  6. #6 |  freebob | 

    There oughtta be a law:
    Virginia is getting caught up. Here’s an article about the General Assembly considering Caylee’s Law. At the end of the article it’s dropped in they’re also considering a law that will make it illegal to invite kids into your car. Now, no laws have been passed yet but if I’m driving through the neighborhood and see a neighbor’s kid be harassed or violated, I’ll be sure to keep driving, lest I be charged with a crime.

  7. #7 |  freebob | 

    Forgot to add the link:

  8. #8 |  SJE | 

    #5: thanks. When you can conduct a wrong door raid and shoot and kill someone, and its all “just following procedure” I don’t see how police disciplinary records can have any value.

  9. #9 |  SamK | 

    This is what I don’t understand…we allow regular responses from police over actions that *KILL* to be filled with “just following orders” and then bitch about Nazi references (or KGB or whatever). No, there’s not a detailed and directed campaign of terror against ordinary citizens openly being directed by the government, but there’s certainly examples of each part of that description in action right now, today…just how friggin’ close do we have to get before we’re “allowed” to take issue with this shit? (not us here obviously, I mean as a country)

  10. #10 |  Chris in AL | 

    Teacher/Facebook article:
    “The bill is clearly targeted at stopping sexual relationships between teachers and students…”

    I didn’t realize there wasn’t already a law against that! So apparently you can screw kids as long as they are Facebook friends. FFWBs so to speak. Not clear on whether this is true of everybody or just teachers but it is a major loophole in the law when this combination of scenarios makes screwing students non-prosecutable!

  11. #11 |  DarkEFang | 

    A woman goes to court to pay a traffic ticket. A bailiff says he smells alcohol on her breath and she blows a .21 on a breathalyzer, so the judge sends her to jail for 10 days for contempt of court. She’d been working before going to the courthouse, and not drunk, so nobody can figure out how she got so blasted on the way to court.

    A person that the woman does not know calls the sheriff and says they are concerned for her health. She is offered a cell in solitary, but declines it. Three days later, she becomes extremely anxious. The jail staff calls in a nurse, who places her in solitary. She turned up dead an hour later, after choking to death on her plastic ID bracelet.

    This is the website of the company she worked for:

    Wow, this website says nothing in a very long-winded way. What is it they do exactly?

    “Insignia Technology Services provides information technology services and solutions to Department of Defense and commercial customers. Core competencies involve the cradle-to-grave support of very large and complex enterprise-class IT systems running in mission-critical high-availability environments. This includes everything from program management, architecture, and engineering, to help desk support and training. ”

    This isn’t terribly specific either. But we do see that they went from $130k to $9 million in revenue in 3 years.

    Oh, and she was in charge of payroll and security clearances for the company.

    So maybe I watch too much Burn Notice, but does any of this seem at all suspicious?

  12. #12 |  CyniCAl | 

    Followup on Kelly Thomas, the Fullerton, CA man beaten to death by Fullerton, CA cops last week. Pay special attention to the part where 70 people spoke out at the most recent city council meeting and that they are planning their second protest in front of the police station. More of this.

  13. #13 |  Yizmo Gizmo | 

    DUI and seat belt laws are the perfect double standard laws.

    Cops do it all the time and get away with it and when we do it we’re
    fined and jailed to no end, even though they’re the
    ones all anal about the law.
    Seriously, ever seen a cop “click it”?

  14. #14 |  abhisaha | 

    The reaction of the primary voter (the last link above) is really astonishing. I don’t think I have ever seen anything like this, not even at the Onion.

  15. #15 |  capn_amurka | 

    Regarding the Adam Walsh issue:

    The article says, “If the e-mail bounces back or the call goes to the wrong person, law enforcement knows an offender is not complying, Grey said.”

    I have a hard time believing that offenders are required to have a phone or internet access in the first place. (What are the Amish offenders supposed to have??) If they’re using this as a standard, I expect a lot of false positives.

  16. #16 |  DarkEFang | 

    I’ve never heard about requiring email, but people on parole and probation are required to have landline phone service.

  17. #17 |  Ira | 

    The CATO article on violent rhetoric is full of hooey. I searched the site for the following key words: Republican hate rhetoric violent.

    Nothing of substance.

    Now I know CATO has an agenda and an organizational viewpoint but this smells. They aren’t required to be balanced, I know. Nor are they required to provide any balance. But, COME ON.

    Perhaps my searching skills suck but this is BS.

    Do these guys really think the Dem’s rhetoric is equal to or exceeds beyond what has been said by the Republican and Tea Party?

    Talk about a false equivalence (sp?).

    Mostly I agree with what I find on their site but this is full of crap.

  18. #18 |  Cyto | 

    CBS news has a piece on the killing of Kelly Thomas.

    You’ve all been waiting to here them say it. CBS includes the money quote:

    A police spokesman, Sgt. Andrew Goodrich, said the case was an isolated incident.

    “We have a good department full of good individuals,” he said. “We’ve made more than half-a-million law enforcement contacts over the past 4.5 years … This is the only instance of this kind that’s happened.”

    Well, Ok then. Just another isolated incident.

  19. #19 |  Mister DNA | 

    As a native Texan, the primary voter’s comment doesn’t surprise me in the least. We love us some executions here in the Lone Star State.

  20. #20 |  Highway | 

    Ira, the point I get isn’t that there isn’t ‘violent rhetoric’ on both sides. It’s that the narrative from major media outlets is “right wingers incite people to hate their enemies and that’s wrong”, but then they use the same language to incite people to hate. It’s that if you’re going to lecture people about how wrong it is to use veiled threats and call people terrorists, then you really can’t go using veiled threats and calling people terrorists.

  21. #21 |  Mike T | 

    As a native Texan, the primary voter’s comment doesn’t surprise me in the least. We love us some executions here in the Lone Star State.

    As a native southerner, it doesn’t surprise me either. Many southerners are quick to fall all over themselves to justify the death penalty. They love them some righteous punishment. Too bad most of them haven’t read enough of the Bible they often quote in defense of capital punishment to realize how difficult God made it to actually sentence a man to death.

  22. #22 |  Dave Krueger | 

    Looking at the effects of the Adam Walsh Act, five years later.

    Sex offender registries are the codification of the lynch mob mentality. Sex offenders are subhuman, therefore we can do anything we want to them and the public will cheer us on.

  23. #23 |  Wesley | 

    When I got to the last link about executing an innocent man, my first thought was that it must be a parody article from the Onion or elsewhere. I did not expect anyone to be able to say that seriously.


  24. #24 |  Brutusettu | 


    I think in general, more people such as Krugman thought the “‘right’s’ violent rhetoric” was 1/2 serious at the least, and that the talk was backed up with with some with actually showing of guns and others apparently joking about putting mil-dots over their “targets.” Some people just didn’t all were being hyperbolic or were concerned some listeners would take that talk seriously.
    Krugman’s et al. seems more there with an implicit “bless their hearts” in front of the quotes.

  25. #25 |  Ira | 

    Highway: They’re writing about Opinion writers NOT “major media outlets” and mostly about the NYT. It’s interesting that your read of the post results in that takeaway.

    Now there are some vaguely sourced quotes from the VP, POTUS, and other “prominent media” but no links etc… That’s just lazy but I’ll concede his point.

    What I get from the post and your response is that CATO is essentially calling media and politicians out on hypocricy (sp?)? Is that right?

    If so, that’s just weak and sort of sad.

  26. #26 |  BJ | 

    Making cartoons mocking the police is cyber-bulling and subject to a criminal investigation.

  27. #27 |  Highway | 

    Either you take the position that ‘violent rhetoric’ is a problem or that it isn’t. Cato, by your previous search (and my brief google searches) hasn’t ever complained that such communication is much of a problem. This piece is what, 300 words around a column that is talking about the New York Times, and mentions CNN, MSNBC, and Washington Post.

    Hinkle’s column also ends with the NYT’s opinion columnist’s opinion on why there’s so much violent rhetoric (from 2004), and turns it around: basically, they’re saying that stuff because they’ve got nothing else.

    Cato’s pointing that out in a blog post. What’s wrong with that?

  28. #28 |  gersan | 

    “It takes balls to execute an innocent man.”

    As long as the innocent man isn’t themselves, or a friend or relative of themselves.

  29. #29 |  awp | 

    Perry makes my dad (a staunch social and economic conservative) vote for democrats.

  30. #30 |  Stress N. Strain | 

    Teen dies in jail after being arrested for marijuana possession.

  31. #31 |  Graham Shevlin | 

    I’ll take Cato seriously when they point me back to their previous articles condemning utterances by the likes of Sharon Angle about “Second Amendment Remedies”, Michele Bachman’s idea about finding out which members of Congress are “un-American” etc. etc. Until I see some evidence of even-handedness, I am going to regard articles like this as reactionary pearl-clutching bullcrap.

  32. #32 |  Mo | 

    I don’t see why Cato criticizes Obama for calling the Republicans hostage takers. Mitch McConnell called the Republicans hostage takers and said that they’d take the hostage again.

  33. #33 |  Cops Shot My Dog | 

    In other puppycide news, last week cops responding to a domestic dispute in St. Petersburg Florida gunned down D-Bo, an 8-month old pit bull.

  34. #34 |  SJE | 

    I’ve got to call BS on the Cato Inst. article on hate. Sure, there are wackos and hate mongers on both sides, but the current leadership of the National GOP plays to the worst instincts of people: racism, religious intolerance, ignorance, and fear. I simply cannot see the equivalence with the Democrats.

  35. #35 |  twency | 

    “the current leadership of the National GOP plays to the worst instincts of people: racism, religious intolerance, ignorance, and fear”

    Relevant examples, please?

  36. #36 |  Mattocracy | 

    In my opinion, the difference between liberal and conservative hate/violent rhetoric is that conservatives don’t bitch about Democrat hate/violent rhetoric nearly as much. They’re both a bunch of hypocrites, and I’m sure there are examples of conservatives complaining about liberal intolerance here and there. I just don’t see it happening as much.

    I would also argue the mainstream liberal political machine uses fear of racism, fear of religious conservativism, and fear of anything else that will rally their base just as much as Republicans do.

    I believe that it’s more readily accepted that conservative do these things and so it skews public perception of it’s severity.

  37. #37 |  Medicine Man | 

    As much as I hate the (typically lazy) “both sides do it”-meme, it is true in the strictest sense in this case. Negative messaging tactics are a commonplace, venerable component of all political parties in North America, not just the right.

    If I’m suspicious of an article like the one in CATO, it is because the “both sides do it”-meme is often employed to hand wave away the differences in intensity between the present day radicalism of the right and the left. The right-wing fringe has a clear edge over the left-fringe in activism and proximity to power at the moment.

    So in my opinion, the partisan haters are similar in temperament and tactics, but not equal in clout or brazenness. YMMV.

  38. #38 |  SJE | 

    #35 “Relevant examples”
    – Sarah Palin, Glenn Beck, Ann Coulter, Rush Limbaugh

    – the entire birther movement
    – the opposition to gay marriage or gays in the military
    – too much of the immigration debate
    – the “ground zero” mosque
    – branding as traitors anyone who questioned the ballooning security state.

    All of these issue have serious followers at the higher levels of the GOP and affiliated opinion makers.

  39. #39 |  SJE | 

    I would also add that, as much as I dislike a lot of the Democratic positions, I find the GOP negotiations on the debt ceiling and health care deplorable. Politics overwhelms good policy.

    On health care the GOP could have pushed for tort reform, more open markets in insurance, revisiting Medicare/Medicaid, etc. They prefered to play politics. This is good politics as it bashes the Dems with their horrible bill. But what about acutal reform? The last GOP health reform was a new huge drug entitlement.

    On the debt, Mitch McConnell admitted his goal is to prevent Obama’s re-election. Fine. But the clusterf*k over the debt was focussed too much on how to make the democrats suffer and not the long term fiscal health of the country. They could have called the Democrat’s bluff and agreed to small tax increases in return for much much larger entitlement cuts. The markets see that the gridlock in Washington is unable to cut even under pressure.

  40. #40 |  SJE | 

    As if to make my point, S&P downgraded US debt.