Saturday, July 17, 2010

woman tased after calling for police about prowler

A woman is considering legal action after cops tased her multiple times. The woman, Janice Wells, called police in the western Georgia town of Richland because she thought there was a prowler outside her house. Mrs. Wells had called family friend John Robinson to stay with her until the cops arrived. When policeman Tim Murphy arrived, he spoke to Robinson and found out where he lived, how long he had known Mrs. Wells, and the nature of their relationship. In his incident report, Officer Murphy wrote that he let Mr. Robinson go because it's best to ensure participants in domestic violence remain apart. Mrs. Wells said that there was no domestic violence and had been no indication of any. So when Officer Murphy asked Mrs. Wells Mr. Robinson's name, she wouldn't tell him. This escalated the situation and Mrs. Wells, a 57 year-old-lady, was ultimately tased multiple times by Officer Murphy and an officer who arrived shortly after.

The officers are no longer employed by the police department, but this sort of thing should not be happening. The county sheriff, Larry Jones, suggests that race may be a factor in the case. Mrs. Wells is black and the two arresting officers are white. I would endorse Jones' suggestion. This would not have happened had the lady calling the police been white. Cops using tasers so recklessly only uphold the suspicions of people of color and poor people about the interests of police departments. It would be hard to counteract those arguments, given the horrific nature of videos such as that showing Mrs. Wells being tased.


Bibi Netanyahu, unmasked

Bibi Netanyahu has been caught on tape claiming that the US can easily be manipulated. He says that the US would not hinder the foreign policy goals of a Netanyahu administration. He also says that the Oslo Accords are not a hindrance to Israeli retention of land because the Oslo Accordsallowed Israel to retain land which was defined as military land. In the video, Netanyahu boasts that given that, he argued that large areas of Israel were military zones, allowing Israel to retain control over land which could quite easily be argued is nothing of the sort.

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Thursday, July 01, 2010

bees in my bonnet

There are several stories which have been bugging me today but don't really have time to comment more extensively on them so I'll just post the links here so you can read more.

  • There's this story about the degree to which the mainstream media has adopted the US government's framing of what most sensible people call torture. The study covered in the story reveals that waterboarding before 2004 had almost always been called torture but that from 2004 until the present, the newspapers with the widest circulations in the US have largely shrunk from calling it torture and have used many euphemisms.

  • The GOP doesn't care about poor people.

  • John Boehner is an asshole, part 28496.

  • Sharon Angle is also an asshole though not quite of the same vintage as John Boehner. Boehner's assholiness is assholiness at its most accomplished. One can't just get up in the morning one day and decide to be an asshole of the quality of John Boehner. It takes years and years of practice, decades of misrepresenting, and a great deal of projecting in defense of one's shifty political decisions to be such a complete asshole as John Boehner. Still, Angle is certainly well on her way, particularly with the volume of insensitivity she has coughed up in her short time on the national stage. If she keeps up this pace, she will be one of the All-Star Asshole Greats of All Time one day.

  • Naomi Klein points out that while there was vandalism during the G20 summit, the REAL crime scene was within the buildings where the leaders met. While the banks made the financial crisis, the G20 finance ministers, in their wisdom, have vowed to cut public debt by half by 2013. So poor folks, kids, old people, the disabled, will be punished for the drunken binges of bankers.

  • The financial reform bill looks toothless. The consumer protection agency is gutted and there's no regulation of derivatives.

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