Friday, 11/28/2014

The Murder Act

I have been most seriously contemplating the commission and most important trust of our committee of safety, and especially that branch of it which relates to their mustering the minute men and others of the militia, when they shall judge that the late acts of parliament, viz.: the regulation act, and the murder act, are attempted to be carried into execution by force. A most critical, most important, most arduous trust this. 

 - Joseph Hawley (Massachusetts Provincial Congress) to Thomas Cushing (First Continental Congress), February 22, 1775

 

Maybe it's because I've brought up Founding Era stuff in the Ferguson context, or because there really is an uncanny parallel, but I cannot help equating the strange, almost extra-judicial Grand Jury proceedings to Parliamentary actions which helped fuel our drive toward Independence.

First, here's probably the most offensive provision of the Administration of Justice Act of 1774, passed in reaction to the Boston Tea Party:

[I]t shall and may be lawful for the governor, or lieutenant-governor, to direct, with the advice and consent of the council, that the inquisition, indictment, or appeal, shall be tried in some other of his Majesty's colonies, or in Great Britain...

Despite a Boston jury's perfectly upholding the rule of law in the Boston Massacre trial, British officials decided they couldn't rely on the judicial system in Massachusetts and would have to remove defendants to venues more conducive to a "proper" result.  This and the other Intolerable Acts, in showing disregard for norms of governance and justice, enraged people enough to call for the First Continental Congress and only further encouraged radicalism in New England, not to mention all the American colonies eventually.

Taking away the mechanisms of justice from the community involved fundamentally does away with justice.  It disempowers the community.

Similarly, the Mike Brown Grand Jury, while pretending to be transparent, actually turned the notion of a Grand Jury on its head and essentially separated the aggrieved community from justice process.  Rather than allowing an adversarial trial with a jury drawn from the community, the DA and prosecutor used a preselected panel--the type which is generally weighted against black members, as this particular one in fact was--that arrived at what's clearly a preferred result from the POV of the powers that be.

It was grievances like this, along with taxation without representation--which the black citizens of Ferguson certainly suffer under--that spurred certain riots, declarations and other revolutionary tendencies that we celebrate today.  Yet when we see the same kind of attacks on liberty and responses by the oppressed, the scolds seem to have the loudest voices as they defend the overclass and their acts of murder.

ntodd

November 28, 1:50 PM | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Fist in the air, in the land of hypocrisy


Because wake the fuck up, that's why.

ntodd

November 28, 10:45 AM | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

What Cannot Be Heard

[I]t is better to be violent if there is violence in our breasts than to put on the cloak of non-violence to cover impotence. Violence is any day preferable to impotence. There is hope for a violent man to become non-violent. There is no such hope for the impotent.

 - A half-naked fakir


One last graf from Coates:

What clearly cannot be said is that violence and nonviolence are tools, and that violence—like nonviolence—sometimes works. "Property damage and looting impede social progress," Jonathan Chait wrote Tuesday. He delivered this sentence with unearned authority. Taken together, property damage and looting have been the most effective tools of social progress for white people in America. They describe everything from enslavement to Jim Crow laws to lynching to red-lining.

"Property damage and looting"—perhaps more than nonviolence—has also been a significant tool in black "social progress."

Property damage and murder have also been significant tools used by whites in denying black social progress.  Property damage and looting have also been significant tools in white political progress.  Property damage and looting have also been significat tools for communicating by the unheard.

It's easy for white dudes--and safe black scolds like Bill Cosby who yell at black kids to pull up their pants as though that's what is wrong with America and if only their pants weren't riding low they'd all have good jobs and political empowerment and never get shot by white dudes--to say rioting is bad and reinforces black stereotypes.  It's easy for white dudes to say that when white dudes who riot are never representative of their demographic and white dudes who kill always have a good reason because of those rioting black thugs and demons and animals.  It's easy for white dudes to say we should trust the system when it consistently and persistently disenfranchises and disrespects and disregards and dispossesses and disillusions black Americans.

It's easy for white dudes to not listen because they're always so busy lecturing.  So it becomes easy for other Americans to use the few tools they have available, when white dudes only want them to be impotent.

ntodd

November 28, 10:08 AM | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

What Cannot Be Done

Nonviolent direct action seeks to create such a crisis and foster such a tension that a community which has constantly refused to negotiate is forced to confront the issue. It seeks so to dramatize the issue that it can no longer be ignored.

 - MLK, Letter from a Birmingham Jail (April 16, 1963)


More TNC:

What clearly cannot be said is that American society's affection for nonviolence is notional. What cannot be said is that American society's admiration for Martin Luther King Jr. increases with distance, that the movement he led was bugged, smeared, harassed, and attacked by the same country that now celebrates him. King had the courage to condemn not merely the violence of blacks, nor the violence of the Klan, but the violence of the American state itself.

Ostensible liberal allies were uncomfortable with King's direct action, and I think still doesn't fully understand what he said and did.  The Right thought him a grave communist threat and now tries to claim a version of King as whitewashed as our genocidal Pilgrims and their peaceful thanksgiving feast.

Anyway, Coates is right that the American love for nonviolence is rather superficial.  The extent of what most people know is marches that don't do shit, and there understanding and willingness to act ends.  Anything more done by other people makes Americans uneasy and to suggest anything more be done by Americans makes them defensive.

But at least King makes for nice, unthreatening Facebook memes.

ntodd

PS--One great irony when I get into discussions about nonviolent action is I generally hear "this isn't the 60s" or "it only worked for civil rights."  When, of course, we're talking about defending civil rights today.  So that won't work, but people shouldn't riot...

November 28, 9:26 AM | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

What Cannot Be Said

Naturally, TNC writes something powerful:

Black people know what cannot be said. What clearly cannot be said is that the events of Ferguson do not begin with Michael Brown lying dead in the street, but with policies set forth by government at every level. What clearly cannot be said is that the people of Ferguson are regularly plundered, as their grandparents were plundered, and generally regarded as a slush-fund for the government that has pledged to protect them. What clearly cannot be said is the idea of superhuman black men who "bulk up" to run through bullets is not an invention of Darren Wilson, but a staple of American racism.

This must needs to stand on its own--I have other things about his piece to note later.

ntodd

November 28, 8:55 AM | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Thursday, 11/27/2014

A Child's Christmas In Vermont


Since Sam wishes it were Christmas, and there's snow on the ground...

ntodd

November 27, 10:39 PM | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Colorblindism

Yup, this always gives me pause:

Many whites like to claim they “don’t see color,” often pointing out that they don’t care whether a person’s skin is green or purple – colors not commonly associated with human beings.

We all have biases and blinders.  Part of overcoming the attendant isms in our society is acknowledging that in ourselves.

ntodd

PS--I've covered this before.

November 27, 9:21 PM | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

#throwbackthursday


A young Sam the Cat tries an attack from below on Dear Old Saffron (Thanksgiving 2003).

ntodd

November 27, 9:00 PM in Family Life | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Feature, Not A Bug

The Wilson Exoneration Jury does seem like an inverted show trial.  Designed to appear like justice, but just as fake in its predetermined result.

ntodd

November 27, 9:22 AM | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Wednesday, 11/26/2014

Glória in excélsis Deo


Et in terra pax homínibus bonae voluntátis.

ntodd

November 26, 9:52 PM | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Blind Justice Finds Another Of Scalia's Nuts

Everybody's all over the Scalia thing on Grand Juries, but what the hell.  I always enjoy when his words can be used for a good cause.

ntodd

November 26, 8:18 PM | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack (0)

Demons Redux

Easy to kill The Other, and to convince people it was justified: 

  • dKos: Shorter Darren Wilson Testimony: Michael Brown was a 'Giant Beast Negro' That Had to Be Killed
  • TP: Darren Wilson And George Zimmerman Described Mike Brown and Trayvon Martin The Same Way

The killers must all buy their scripts from the same store online...

ntodd

PS--Naturally, a demon could fly 150 feet instantly...

November 26, 5:50 PM | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Yeah, See, States Can't Do That

So sorry to hear about your hunting dog being ill:

Under an unconstitutional proposal by Texas state Rep. Dan Flynn (R), just two people in the state of Texas — the state house speaker and the lieutenant governor — would effectively have the power to suspend any federal law within Texas’s borders, at least temporarily. The legislation creates a 14 member “joint legislative committee on nullification” that is co-chaired by the speaker and lieutenant governor. Half of the dozen remaining members are appointed by one of the committee’s chairs, while the other half are appointed by the other chair (although only eight of the committee’s fourteen total members may belong to the same political party). A bare majority of the committee, eight votes, may temporarily declare that a federal law “has no legal effect in this state.” If that declaration is ratified by the state legislature in the next legislative session, it becomes permanent.

Been there.  Done that.  Because states just can't.

ntodd

November 26, 4:27 PM in Constitution, Schmonstitution | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Demons

Yup, black men have always been demons.  Long before DW Griffith taught us they were rapists and incapable of self-government.

ntodd

November 26, 3:45 PM | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Dilution Of Dissent

Indeed, Fuck CNN:

In the [CNN video], a single protester runs into the camera’s frame and shouts, “F*ck CNN!”

Other demonstrators quickly took up the chant, which was broadcast live to all of Anderson Cooper 360‘s viewers.

“And as you can hear,” said Marquez, “they don’t exactly love CNN, either. These people are willing to protest anything.”

I see what you did there.  If people are willing to protest anything, then really they are protesting nothing, can be dismissed.  Dilute the dissent and we can move on without hearing, internalizing.  Even if we're protesting the media (who is part of the problem, though not quite in the cartoonish, self-serving way Darren Wilson's BFF made it out to be).

ntodd

November 26, 3:02 PM in And Fuck... | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

The Pilgrims Were Neither Socialists Nor Capitalists

Just a friendly reminder: Slate is right, the Pilgrims didn't starve because of socialism.  And, of course, these illegal aliens (seriously, they didn't even land where they were "given" a grant) were saved by socialist natives.

ntodd

November 26, 8:39 AM | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack (0)

Tuesday, 11/25/2014

Your Wise Men Don't Know How It Feels To Be Thick As A Brick


RMJ does his best Ian Anderson impression.

ntodd

November 25, 9:10 PM | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack (0)

Evacuation Day

Finally, the British left:

It was late in November, 1783, before the British troops were prepared to leave New York, so large was the number of persons, and so great was the quantity of goods to be first conveyed away. At length Sir Guy Carleton gave Washington notice when he would be ready to surrender the city. Governor Clinton summoned the members of the state council to convene at Eastchester on the twenty-first of November, to prepare for the re-establishment of civil government in New York city and its vicinity, and a detachment of troops came down from West Point to be ready to take possession of the posts about to be evacuated by the British.

Carleton appointed the twenty-fifth of November as the day for the evacuation, and before that time the British troops were drawn in from the surrounding posts. On the morning of the twenty-fifth Washington and Governor Clinton were at Harlem, with the detachment from West Point, under General Knox; and during the morning they all moved toward the city, and halted at the Bowery. The troops were composed of light-dragoons, light-infantry, and artillery, and were accompanied by the civil officers of the state.



Between twelve and one o'clock the British troops were embarked. The fleet immediately weighed anchor, and with a favoring breeze sailed out the Narrows. The American troops and the civil authorities then marched in and took formal possession. Washington and Clinton, with their respective suites, led the procession, escorted by a troop of Westchester cavalry. Then followed the lieutenant-governor and members of the council, General Knox and the officers of the army, the speaker of the assembly, and a large procession of citizens on horseback and on foot.

The evacuation of the British, and the entrance of the Americans, produced in the inhabitants mingled feelings of joy and sadness. The whigs greatly rejoiced at their deliverance, while the families of loyalists were saddened by the change. There was a marked contrast between the troops that left and the troops that came. "We had been accustomed for a long time to military display in all the finish and finery of garrison life," said an American lady to Mr. Irving; "the troops just leaving us were as if equipped for show, and with their scarlet uniforms and burnished arms, made a brilliant display; the troops that marched in, on the contrary, were ill-clad and weather-beaten, and made a forlorn appearance; but they were _our_ troops, and as I looked at them and thought upon all they had done and suffered for us, my heart and my eyes were full, and I admired and gloried in them the more, because they _were_ weather-beaten and forlorn."[6]

But joy was the predominant feeling, and on that night the city was a scene of public festivity, and demonstrations of unbounded pleasure. The governor gave a feast, and splendid fireworks illuminated the town.

Nobody likes to be occupied.

ntodd

November 25, 7:31 PM | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

It's Not Even A Fun Drinking Game Any More

Some people are suggesting Congress give Obama a big burn by not letting him come give a SOTU address in person.  Good, it'll be like when Jefferson was in charge (written messages lasted until Wilson).  Always a buncha bullshit anywayz.

ntodd

November 25, 5:26 PM | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack (0)

Meanwhile Back In The Year One


You didn't stand a chance, son.

ntodd

November 25, 2:09 PM | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Hearing The Unheard

MLK at Grosse Pointe High School, March 14, 1968:

I would be the first to say that I am still committed to militant, powerful, massive, non­-violence as the most potent weapon in grappling with the problem from a direct action point of view. I'm absolutely convinced that a riot merely intensifies the fears of the white community while relieving the guilt. And I feel that we must always work with an effective, powerful weapon and method that brings about tangible results.

But it is not enough for me to stand before you tonight and condemn riots. It would be morally irresponsible for me to do that without, at the same time, condemning the contingent, intolerable conditions that exist in our society. These conditions are the things that cause individuals to feel that they have no other alternative than to engage in violent rebellions to get attention.

And I must say tonight that a riot is the language of the unheard. And what is it America has failed to hear? It has failed to hear that the plight of the negro poor has worsened over the last twelve or fifteen years. It has failed to hear that the promises of freedom and justice have not been met. And it has failed to hear that large segments of white society are more concerned about tranquility and the status quo than about justice and humanity.

When people are disenchanted, disenfranchised, and otherwise dispossessed, it's entirely understandable that some don't go the non-violent path and instead lash out.  It's easy for those of us not living in the same conditions to condemn it.

ntodd

November 25, 1:28 PM | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

The System Worked Perfectly

A few quick links and then I'm going to indulge my privilege and go escapist for a while:

Given that we have all the evidence presented to the GJ, I don't want to hear anything about how we don't know what they saw.  We do.  And it's pretty clear there was a miscarriage of justice.  Or rather, a carriage of biased justice, which is why some people are a little upset about a system wherein this is not a failure, but a design feature.

ntodd

November 25, 12:33 PM | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

God Stole The Handle


The train won't stop going, to way to slow down.

ntodd

November 25, 10:58 AM | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Worth Less Than The Cost Of A Few Bullets

Zandar:

You will excuse me if I withhold that benefit of the doubt.  In his testimony, Wilson, a 6’4″ man, referred to Mike Brown as “it”, and “a demon”.  He wasn’t human.  He was a thing, and there’s no penalty for shooting a thing and so this thing was shot time and time again because it had to be put down, a monster, a beast, a nightmare made flesh.

And whatever actually took place on that street that day, it does not warrant a trial to investigate it. That is the lesson here. Did Brown deserve the ultimate sanction, the taking of his life?  We’ll never know.  There’s no trial to compare the evidence, to advocate one way or another in a court of law, nothing to weigh, no due process.  He wasn’t worth that. That’s what the system says.

I don't even know what the solution is at this point.

ntodd

November 25, 9:37 AM | Permalink | Comments (2) | TrackBack (0)

Monday, 11/24/2014

Psalm 51


According to the multitude of Thy mercies...

ntodd

November 24, 9:31 PM | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

The Awful Grace Of God

A little Aeschylus seems apropriate tonight:

In sleep, before the heart of each,
A woe-remembering travail sheds in dew
Discretion, -- ay, and melts the unwilling too
By what, perchance, may be a graciousness
Of gods, enforced no less, --
As they, commanders of the crew,
Assume the awful seat. 

(Robert Browning trans.)

ntodd

November 24, 8:23 PM | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Economic Conspiracy Theorists

Shrill:

[T]he central dispute is between those who see depressions as the result of inadequate demand, implying that inflation will fall and that printing money does nothing unless it boosts employment, and those who see depressions as the result of maladapation of resources or something — anyway, something on the supply side — who predict that running the printing presses will lead to runaway inflation.

How could you test those rival views? Why, how about having a huge slump, to which central banks respond with aggressive monetary expansion? And that is, of course, the test we’ve just run. And everywhere you look, inflation is low, verging on deflation.

So we’ve just run the Schiff test — and his brand of economics, by his own criteria, loses with flying colors. And that goes for just about all anti-Keynesian doctrines: we ran as close to a clean experiment as you’re ever going to get, and the answer is no.

Now, just about everyone on that side insists that it’s not true, that sinister bureaucrats are smuggling away the inflation evidence and burying it in Area 51. That tells you a lot about who we’re dealing with.

Yeah, pretty much we're dealing with crazy people who don't accept evidence.  Inflation, Benghazi, whatever.  It's all the same.  Which is why we can't have nice things.

ntodd

November 24, 6:14 PM | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack (0)

I Am A Hero!

But not for cooking.  I mean, I cook 98.7% of our meals, but it's in my contract.

I'm a hero because I clean the fucking catbox.  And we have too many fucking cats.

ntodd

November 24, 5:01 PM | Permalink | Comments (2) | TrackBack (0)

They Can't Take It With Them


But what do they care?

ntodd

November 24, 1:46 PM | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Inside Baseball Meanderings

In looking through Thomas to glean some of S.744's (Senate immigration bill's) legislative history, I found something interesting (to me).  

Usually if you load up the actions taken by Congress on various bills, you'll see a chamber might've passed it and its reception by the other is recorded, or a message asking for concurrence is sent, or what have you (it's not entirely consistent).  But in this case, immediately after passage Reid merely asked for approval to have the bill printed, which was granted.  And there it stands.

Which brings me to a uniquely weird assertion I stumbled upon that Reid refuses to give the bill to House because he knows it's unconstitutional and it will be blue-slipped (I've covered that before).  There's a lot of wrong there to unpack, but I cannot in fact confirm the bill was ever sent to over.

I speculate--and have sent a query about all this to Reid's office, though I know I'll likely never get a response even if it weren't Turkey break--that the printed copy (essentially what was engrossment back in the day) is what formed the basis of House Dems' HR15.  That bill is fundamentally the same as the Senate's version, with some stuff removed (I think because there's another bill floating around covering those issues).

So did Reid not transmit the bill to Boner the bill because the latter said it wouldn't come to a vote anyway (per his dedication to the Hastert Rule when he needs to hide behind it)?  Or other motivation?  Dunno.  But it's researching shit like this that keeps me off the streets and out of trouble.

Anyway, just a reminder that a lot of things Congress does are not on the floor, not in the Record, and not immediately available to the casual observer.

ntodd

November 24, 1:12 PM | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Speaking Of Ignorant Governors

What a fine ruben you New Yorkers have re-elected:

"We are experiencing a pattern of extreme weather that we have not seen before," Cuomo told reporters Sunday after a press conference about the massive lake-effect snowstorm that hit Buffalo last week and the flooding that's now likely because of warming temperatures. "I don't want to get into a political debate at this time about climate change causes, et cetera. Forget the causes. Is it global warming? Is it reliance on fossil fuels? Forget the causes. What is inarguable is the result."

Dog knows we wouldn't want to address causes to try mitigating these inarguable results.  Hey, let's just blame the NWS!  Cowardly asshole.

ntodd

November 24, 12:36 PM in And Fuck... | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack (0)

So Rudy Doesn't Read My Blog

Mayor 9/11 trots out the usual racist trope to deflect discussion of white cops killing black men.  What an utterly shocking turn of events.

And really, why is everybody so upset by Nazis shooting Jews when so many people died of typhus anyway?

ntodd

November 24, 12:17 PM | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

One Man's Junk Is Another Generation's Treasure

Who knew I was actually an artist?

Last weekend, just ahead of Art Basel Miami Beach, visitors to the Locust Projectsexhibition space got a glimpse of Welcome to the Future, artist Daniel Arsham’s ode to an archaeological dig full of reproductions of 20th-century media devices that clog our 21st-century landfills.

Damn, I should just post a picture of my junk room.  I've got 40 decades worth of defunct technology up there gathering dust and causing Ericka great anxiety.

ntodd

November 24, 10:11 AM | Permalink | Comments (5) | TrackBack (0)

Sunday, 11/23/2014

Parts Upon A Ground


Lovely little Purcell offering, via Steve Bates.

ntodd

November 23, 10:00 PM | Permalink | Comments (2) | TrackBack (0)

Many A Man Lives A Burden To The Earth

Apropos of the House's latest brainstorm to prevent scientists from advising the EPA, I consider Milton's Areopagitica, published on this date in 1644:

We can grow ignorant again, brutish, formal and slavish...Give me the liberty to know, to utter, and to argue freely according to conscience, above all liberties.

But we already knew which side of the equation Republicans were on...

ntodd

November 23, 8:46 PM | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Ignorant Governors

I see Cuomo is throwing our wonderful, important National Weather Service under the bus, just as Georgia's Guv did earlier this year.  Fuck you, ignorant asshole.

ntodd

November 23, 7:50 PM in And Fuck... | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Fort Sumter

Bless her heart that's three sizes too small:

President Obama’s looming executive action on immigration reform represents a Fort Sumter-type moment, according to conservative icon Phyllis Schlafly.

Schlafly at first considered comparing the Obama amnesty to the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor but decided that Obama’s plan is much more subtle.

“With Pearl Harbor, the American people knew what was happening,” she said.

But Fort Sumter, where the opening shots of the Civil War were fired, represented the beginning of a ruinous conflict, and Schlafly, like fellow conservative luminary Richard Viguerie, speculates that an executive amnesty might touch off a sort of modern-day conflagration.

Actually, this would be more like Lincoln's legal act of winning the Electoral College, which caused SC to secede then fire on Ft Sumter, which violence actually started the war.  You go ahead, guys: shoot first.

ntodd

November 23, 7:08 PM | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

"I'm throwing rocks tonight! Mark it, Dude."

Ted Cruz suggests Congress should do just what Barack Obama is doing: use checks and balances to do their jobs.  He's sharp as a bowling ball, that guy.

ntodd

November 23, 6:10 PM | Permalink | Comments (3) | TrackBack (0)

"Yeah, well, you know, that's just, like, your opinion, man."

Poor Lindsey Windsey:

Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC) on Sunday refused to accept that the new House Benghazi reportcleared the Obama administration of any wrongdoing in its response to the Benghazi attack.

"I think the report is full of crap," Graham said on CNN's "State of the Union."

The senator insisted that members of the administration altered the Benghazi talking points after the attack.
...
CNN host Gloria Borger then told Graham that the House report concludes that the administration received bad information at first and did not lie.

"That's a bunch of garbage," Graham shot back. "That's a complete bunch of garbage."

So apparently the Senator is going to do a "hard rewrite" of a House report.  I guess everybody needs a hobby, but the dude really needs a puppy or a marmot to take care of...

ntodd

November 23, 5:26 PM | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Shorter Boner

A bipartisan immigration reform bill was passed by the Democratic Senate and is supported by a majority of my GOP House, but I won't bring it to a vote because that's not how democracy works Obama somethingsomethingsomething.

ntodd

November 23, 10:25 AM | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack (0)

Saturday, 11/22/2014

Come Down And Startle Composing Mortals With Immortal Fire


Via a singer friend on FB.

ntodd

November 22, 9:30 PM | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Removing The Mustache Totally Fixed Things

That racist cartoon?  It wasn't meant to be, then it was edited to not be, so what's the big deal?

Gary did not intend to be racially insensitive in his attempt to express his strong views about President Barack Obama’s decision to temporarily prevent the deportation of millions of immigrants living and working illegally in the United States. 

No, of course he didn't intend to be racist.  He just intended to be an ignorant asshole.  BECAUSE THAT'S FUCKING FUNNY!

ntodd

PS--It ain't a crime to be here without documentation.  See below.

November 22, 8:18 PM in And Fuck... | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack (0)

Shibboleth

I'd idly mused in a discussion about whether anybody would go a certain route in response to Obama's cynical, evil, unconstitutional use of Scripture in his speech yesterday.  That was silly of me:

You might think that conservatives would be delighted that Obama, what with his devotion to atheist Muslim liberation theology, had finally invoked the Bible for the very first time in his public career, but instead, they were astonished that his lips did not catch fire from quoting the Worship Words, which are for Yang Chieftans only (and don’t even get us started on the people in comments sections attributing “The devil can cite Scripture for his purpose” to the Bible — you know, from Paul’s Letter to the Merchants Of Venice [ed note: here's the scene]).

Okay, so it's ignorant commenters, but no pundits yet.  I wonder if they're afraid of broadcasting their underlying belief that Obama is the Devil--might lose them moderates!--or leery of the phrase's anti-Semitic origin.

Regardless, it's clear that they're just annoyed that this guy they complain isn't Christian enough can use their code words to defend policy (which they'd never do anyway).

ntodd

November 22, 6:10 PM | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Don't You Get Me Wrong


Could Muhammmed move a mountain, or was that just PR?

ntodd

November 22, 3:43 PM | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Shorter Congressman Dave Brat

I refuse to deploy more resources to the border, deport undocumented felons, or generate more tax revenue.

ntodd

November 22, 2:11 PM | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Icky Thump

As a general rule, it is not a crime for a removable alien to remain in the United States.

 - Justice KennedyArizona et al v US (2012)

Yes, ja, a million times da:

I guarantee you’ll hear the phrase “My ancestors came here legally” in the aftermath of President Obama’s immigration address. It’s almost impossible to find any conversation about immigration—between elected officials, pundits, online commenters—in which at least one participant doesn’t use the phrase. It’s an understandable position, through which the speaker can both defend his or her family history and critique current illegal immigrants who choose to do things differently. It helps deflect charges of hypocrisy (since most Americans are descended from immigrants). It’s hard to argue with. And it’s also, in nearly every case, entirely inaccurate.

Prior to 1875’s Page Act and 1882’s Chinese Exclusion Act, there were no national immigration laws. None. There were laws related to naturalization and citizenship, to how vessels reported their passengers, to banning the slave trade. Once New York’s Castle Garden Immigration Station opened in 1855, arrivals there reported names and origins before entering the U.S. But for all pre-1875 immigrants, no laws applied to their arrival. They weren’t legal or illegal; they were just immigrants.

Moreover, those two laws and their extensions affected only very specific immigrant communities: suspected prostitutes and criminals (the Page Act); Chinese arrivals (the Exclusion Act); immigrants from a few other Asian nations (the extensions). So if your ancestors came before the 1920s and weren’t prostitutes, criminals, or from one of those Asian nations, they remained unaffected by any laws, and so were still neither legal nor illegal. This might seem like a semantic distinction, but it’s much more; the phrase “My ancestors came here legally” implies that they “chose to follow the law,” yet none of these unaffected immigrants had to make any such choice, nor had any laws to follow.

Indeed, it's a meaningless phrase.  I say that as someone whose ancestors came over in a few different waves: 17th century, the Billingtons (Strangers, one or more of whom almost set the Mayflower on fire); 18th century, the Roemers (eventually changed to Ramers in Pennsylvania Dutch country); 20th century, the Pritzkys (Jews escaping pogroms in Ukraine by becoming Christians in Brooklyn).  And somewhere in the mix are Scots-Irish who illegally crossed the Appalachians and married Cherokee (but at least they came here legally as indentured servants!).

Regardless, there's been a general tendency to warn against swarms of Aliens taking over (always the ones coming after We Good Aliens did).  Consider Senate debate over the 14th Amendment:

Now, then, I beg the honorable Senator from Pennsylvania, though it may be very good capital in an electioneering campaign to declaim against the Chinese, not to give himself any trouble about the Chinese, but to confine himself entirely to the injurious effects of this provision upon the encouragement of a Gypsy invasion of Pennsylvania. I had never heard myself of the invasion of Pennsylvania by Gypsies. I do not know, and I do not know that the honorable Senator can tell us, how many Gypsies the census shows to be within the State of Pennsylvania. The only invasion of Pennsylvania within my recollection was an invasion very much worse and more disastrous to the State, and more to be feared and more feared, than that of Gypsies. It was an invasion of rebels, which this amendment, if Iunderstand it aright, is intended to guard against and to prevent the recurrence of.
...
But why all this talk about Gypsies and Chinese? I have lived in the United States for now many a year, and really I have heard more about Gypsies within the last two or three months than I have heard before in my life. It cannot be because they have increased so much of late. It cannot be because they have been felt to be particularly oppressive in this or that locality. It must be that the Gypsy element is to be added to our political agitation, so that hereafter the Negro alone shall not claim our entire attention.

Anywayz, from the beginning of our Republic, we didn't care how Aliens got here, and really encouraged them to come on over to the Greatest Land Ever, all through the late 1800s.  Then we got worried about disease and, worst of all, teh Gayness.  And since Congress started being more restrictive, the Executive has also gotten into the act, including Hoover, Ike, and...everybody else.

But whatever.  I dare Congress to pass a very specific statute that makes an undocumented alien's presence a crime, and budget the necessary tens of billions of dollars to locate each and every criminal and deport them.

ntodd

November 22, 1:43 PM in Constitution, Schmonstitution | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack (0)

Resolve Your 'Ego', It Is All One Web

I Grant You Ample Leave:

"I grant you ample leave
To use the hoary formula 'I am'
Naming the emptiness where thought is not;
But fill the void with definition, 'I'
Will be no more a datum than the words
You link false inference with, the 'Since' & 'so'
That, true or not, make up the atom-whirl..."

George Eliot.

ntodd

November 22, 9:32 AM | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Friday, 11/21/2014

He Looked At Me Like I Was The One Who Should Run


Oh, and I wish you were here.

ntodd

November 21, 9:28 PM | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

Psalm 10

Verses 1 & 2:

Why standest thou afar off, O Lord? why hidest thou thyself in times of trouble?

The wicked in his pride doth persecute the poor: let them be taken in the devices that they have imagined.

Apropos of, well...lots of things.

ntodd

November 21, 8:11 PM | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack (0)

They Rested On The 25th

You'd think in the Computer Age we could do some simple calculations, but apparently not. The Wikipedia On This Date page says that supposedly November 21, 164BCE, is the Gregorian equivalent date when the Temple was restored, which we commemorate with Chanukkah.

That agrees with an online calculator I found, yet this one places it on December 10.  Another source indicates that it is December 9, whilst the Wikipedia entry on Judas Maccabeus says December 14.

Well, whatever.  The festival starts in a few weeks, ending on Christmas Eve of all days (2016 it goes from Christmas Eve to New Year's Day).  In the meantime, we'll rock out to Nimoy and friends celebrating the story.

ntodd

November 21, 6:59 PM | Permalink | Comments (1) | TrackBack (0)