Wednesday Night Open Thread

Another Republican debate? I'm not watching. Better Fare: Survivor, The X-Factor, Harry's Law, Restaurant Impossible or even America's Next Top Model.

Human Rights Watch has a new report on abuses by Mexican police and military in the war on drugs. Shorter version: Mexico's war on drugs is a failure that only serves to increase the violence and fear:

Mexico’s military and police have committed widespread human rights violations in efforts to combat organized crime, virtually none of which are being adequately investigated, Human Rights Watch said in a report released today.


The 212-page report “Neither Rights Nor Security: Killings, Torture, and Disappearances in Mexico’s ‘War on Drugs,’” examines the human rights consequences of President Felipe Calderón’s approach to confronting Mexico’s powerful drug cartels. Through in-depth research in five of Mexico’s most violent states, Human Rights Watch found evidence that strongly suggests the participation of security forces in more than 170 cases of torture, 39 “disappearances,” and 24 extrajudicial killings since Calderón took office in December 2006.

Instead of reducing violence, Mexico’s ‘war on drugs’ has resulted in a dramatic increase in killings, torture, and other appalling abuses by security forces, which only make the climate of lawlessness and fear worse in many parts of the country.

Among those at fault:

Human Rights Watch found that a wide array of justice officials are implicated in human rights violations. They include judges who admit evidence that was likely to have been obtained through torture, prosecutors who obtain “confessions” from defendants who are being held incommunicado on military bases, and medical experts who omit or play down signs of physical injuries when they examine detainees.

In other news, a federal audit of the Secure Border Initiative's plans to build a $1.5 billion fence along the southern border gives the project poor reviews. Not only is the cost uncertain, there's no evidence it will work.

The report, produced by the Government Accountability Office, says the DHS’ Customs and Border Protection, the agency tasked with implementing the plan, “has not yet demonstrated the effectiveness and suitability of its new approach for deploying surveillance technology in Arizona.”

This is an open thread, all topics welcome.

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    Jean Quan (5.00 / 1) (#6)
    by Edger on Wed Nov 09, 2011 at 09:27:42 PM EST
    in a statement today on OccupyOakland again called for the immediate removal of the Occupy Oakland encampment at Frank Ogawa Plaza, saying:

    We know that a tiny minority thinks it is a sound strategy to pit our Police against demonstrators. We call on everyone to reject provocation of violence.

    This has been a test of leadership and a test of conscience. Oakland is a city of hope and opportunity. We are the 99%.

    She is getting better at projecting, it seems.

    But if she is going to start claiming that she is part of the 99% she should get out of her office, buy a tent, move into Frank Ogawa Plaza, stop spewing self defeating nonsense, and tell her police to leave the people of Oakland alone, before she finds her police joining Occupy Oakland.

    Oakland's economy, like the entire US and global economies, cannot sustain occupation by the 1%. Nor can your political future, Jean.

    Interesting. The press here in Portland is (5.00 / 1) (#33)
    by caseyOR on Wed Nov 09, 2011 at 11:40:06 PM EST
    reporting much the same objections to Occupy Portland as Oakland has expressed in that article. All the same talk about damage to parks, public urination and defecation, the public's fear of the protestors. And, of course, the local business community steps up to demand the end of the Occupiers.

    Our mayor's statements, the statements from business groups, the statements from other city council members, they are almost word for word what people in Oakland are saying. It's like they are coordinating among themselves. Is this happening in all other Occupy cities? Or just the ones with Democratic mayors?

    Who is pulling the strings on this mayoral puppet show?


    Press is starting to flow that way (5.00 / 1) (#38)
    by nycstray on Thu Nov 10, 2011 at 12:43:11 AM EST
    with OccupySF. One 'reporter' was practically sneering about the protesters.

    I have a meeting in SF tomorrow, so I'm going to swing by and hang for a bit tomorrow to see for myself what's going on there.

    Was reported earlier that they cut water and lights at OccuplyOakland. And city council members were out protesting about them in a supposed press/discussion thingy. Sad how our elected officials respond to their citizens . . . .


    It's almost word for word (5.00 / 1) (#42)
    by Edger on Thu Nov 10, 2011 at 05:20:09 AM EST
    what the press is saying about Occupy Vancouver, too.

    Last week it was the the demand for demands that was making the rounds in all the cities.

    Some central planning going on somewhere?


    Of course there is (5.00 / 1) (#69)
    by sj on Thu Nov 10, 2011 at 11:13:52 AM EST
    But I get that your question is rhetorical.

    Yes (none / 0) (#74)
    by sj on Thu Nov 10, 2011 at 11:55:13 AM EST
    Mayoral comments and actions have all been in concert for the last couple of weeks.  I will note that most (but not all) of those mayors have been Democrats.  I will further note that the actions [appear to] have been nationally coordinated.  

    Any conclusions that are drawn by that I leave to y'all.


    My mother is in the hospital (5.00 / 1) (#7)
    by Dadler on Wed Nov 09, 2011 at 09:29:16 PM EST
    Stroke-like symptoms, but after the C-scan it looks like no stroke -- which is good news and, well, I don't know what news.  I'm kind of freaking out.  My mother was young when she had me as a college student in the mid 60's.  We had a very hard time for a long time, lived on welfare and food stamps for awhile in L.A., she's had five husbands, a lot of stuff, and we haven't really had a mother/son relationship of any traditional sort until very recently -- it's been in the last few years that "I love you" has comfortably slipped from our lips to each other.  Waiting for a call when they get her into a room.  It looks like she'll be okay, but she was supposed to come up to the bay area this weekend for my son's first concert with the Peninsula Youth Orchestra.  I know she was excited to see him play his trombone.  My father is twenty-plus years older than she is, it never occurred to me I'd be feeling this fear about my mom before my father (who smokes like a chimney, never been an exercise guy, etc.).  But life will do that to you.  Phucking life.  I want her to be a grandmother to my son for a long time to come. I'm rambling like a nitwit.  Peace to everyone, send a good vibe to Southern Cal if you can.

    Get off the keyboard (5.00 / 1) (#9)
    by Edger on Wed Nov 09, 2011 at 09:35:42 PM EST
    and go be with her at the hospital if you can, Dadler.

    Best wishes....


    Will do re the good vibes. Hope all (none / 0) (#10)
    by oculus on Wed Nov 09, 2011 at 09:36:24 PM EST
    goes well.  

    Maybe a TIA? (none / 0) (#14)
    by Anne on Wed Nov 09, 2011 at 09:43:38 PM EST
    Transient ischemic attack, which is a blockage that clears quickly, so no lasting effects, but...good that she is in for observation as often a TIA can be a precursor to a full-blown stroke.

    My mom had the stroke first, then the TIA about a year later - go figure.

    Thinking good thoughts and hoping all goes well.

    Please keep us posted.


    Hope this turns out to be something (none / 0) (#37)
    by caseyOR on Thu Nov 10, 2011 at 12:11:36 AM EST
    simple and fixable with your mom, Dadler.

    Peace to you and your family Dadler (none / 0) (#44)
    by ruffian on Thu Nov 10, 2011 at 06:49:30 AM EST
    I hope it is no more than a wake up call that our time with our parents is limited. And that you and your son have many more years to build that relationship with her.

    Sending good thoughts to you and (none / 0) (#48)
    by MO Blue on Thu Nov 10, 2011 at 07:39:19 AM EST
    your mom. Hope that everything turns out o.k.

    Good vibes.... (none / 0) (#53)
    by kdog on Thu Nov 10, 2011 at 08:44:25 AM EST
    signed, sealed, delivered...thoughts and hopes are with you brother.

    Sending hugs, (none / 0) (#59)
    by Zorba on Thu Nov 10, 2011 at 10:11:58 AM EST
    prayers, and good vibes to your mother, Dadler.

    I'm wishing for your Mom's... (none / 0) (#99)
    by desertswine on Thu Nov 10, 2011 at 09:16:01 PM EST
    swift and complete recovery. Hang tough.

    No comments on the Paterno firing (5.00 / 1) (#15)
    by observed on Wed Nov 09, 2011 at 09:43:45 PM EST
    yet? Sounds like the right decision to me.

    Sounds like the right decision to me too (5.00 / 1) (#43)
    by ruffian on Thu Nov 10, 2011 at 06:40:43 AM EST
    I have no idea about the legalities of what he did  or did not do, but he showed a level of moral bankruptcy that I think should disqualify him from a hero's retirement celebration after the last home game, as the protesting students want.

    From the reaction of the students, it seems the moral corruption goes from top to bottom. Is this the 'benefit' of a higher echelon football program?


    Everybody is watching TV. (none / 0) (#22)
    by oculus on Wed Nov 09, 2011 at 10:17:15 PM EST
    ... and all the coverage of the (5.00 / 0) (#30)
    by brodie on Wed Nov 09, 2011 at 11:12:08 PM EST
    firings on Msnbc.

    Looks like all the commentators so far think it was the right thing to do to dump Paterno now.  Olbermann earlier also called for him to be fired immediately.  They all seem to agree with me that Joe fell well short of the moral test reqd by the circumstances and his contInuing on just continued the negative attention for the school.

    Some students on campus rallying for Joe along with a few homers in the local media think Joe deserves to finish out the season, but the Board finally did the right thing.

    Interesting comment heard on Ed's show:  that it took an awful long time for the grand jury report to be completed and made public -- conveniently right after Paterno had passed the Grambling coach to become the all-time winningest coach in college football history.


    Whats's painful is what happened (5.00 / 0) (#79)
    by jondee on Thu Nov 10, 2011 at 01:40:29 PM EST
    to those defenseless kids..

    Mother Mary and Joseph, lets get our priorities straight here..

    Sorry, folklore and icon hungry America but, eff Papa Joe. And the horse he rode in on.


    It appears that Paterno (none / 0) (#24)
    by MKS on Wed Nov 09, 2011 at 10:46:50 PM EST
    knew nothing was happening to Sandusky--that Sadusky was still on campus with kids after Paterno reported the incident to the AD.

    It looks worse the more you look at it.  


    Man arrested as to murder of woman (5.00 / 1) (#29)
    by oculus on Wed Nov 09, 2011 at 11:09:41 PM EST
    whose husband was previously wrongfully convicted of murdering her.  DNA.  Kudos to Innocence Project.


    Can't let this day go by without noting (5.00 / 1) (#34)
    by brodie on Wed Nov 09, 2011 at 11:46:39 PM EST
    it was 46 years ago today that the Great Northeast Blackout occurred -- and how odd that it struck right at the beginning of evening rush hour.

    Ran across an unusual account of that day recently (book Need to Know by Timothy Good) from a fairly well known actor, Stuart Whitman, about what he saw ... and heard from his hotel window that night.  You can google it and make up your own mind.  Apparently he never backed down from his story over the years.  Interesting fellow.  Interesting mass event.  And yes that scene from the 1950s movie The Day the Earth Stood Still comes to mind.

    Watch where you click (5.00 / 1) (#51)
    by vicndabx on Thu Nov 10, 2011 at 08:31:17 AM EST
    Online Ad Fraud Ring Busted

    It was a two-pronged scheme, prosecutors said. One component involved redirecting clicks on search results to sites that were controlled by the defendants. A search for "I.R.S.," for instance, would lead a user to the Web site of the tax preparer H&R Block. The sites to which users were directed would pay the swindlers a referral fee, prosecutors said. The more traffic they could redirect, the more fees they collected.

    The other way the group made money, according to the indictment, was to swap legitimate online advertisements on certain Web sites with others that would generate payments for the defendants. Prosecutors said that Web sites for ESPN and The Wall Street Journal were affected -- but only when viewed on the infected computers.

    Doc on how to check your computer for this specific malware on the FBI's website.

    Confused Vic... (none / 0) (#60)
    by kdog on Thu Nov 10, 2011 at 10:19:23 AM EST
    you say watch where you click, and link to the FBI's website:)

    As far as scams go, this one seems pretty tame ...why should I care if I click a search result and some Estonian makes a nickel off H&R Block?


    Control of the DNS server you use (none / 0) (#65)
    by vicndabx on Thu Nov 10, 2011 at 11:02:01 AM EST
    Yeah I figured the FBI link may raise an eyebrow or two here. :-)

    Nonetheless in this instance, the FBI is right.  While a few bucks to someone in Estonia for link clicks isn't a big deal, control of the DNS server your computer goes to for a resource (doc, web page, etc.) on the internet is pretty insidious.  The potential is there to expose your computer to some really malicious code.  I wouldn't want the headache.


    I hear ya... (none / 0) (#67)
    by kdog on Thu Nov 10, 2011 at 11:10:54 AM EST
    the techie stuff goes over my head...I know it's a jungle out there in cyberspace, I surf with a half a brain and hope for the best...kinda like life.

    I think the worst that could happen to a user like me is your computer craps out...not the end of the world, I look at is a risk of using the internet.  Tend to think the FBI would be better serving us investigating the crimes of Wall St. and Banksters instead of some Estonian computer geeks scamming nickels, but what do I know:)


    You missed Perry go down in flames. (none / 0) (#1)
    by byteb on Wed Nov 09, 2011 at 09:08:51 PM EST
    I was embarrassed for him.

    Why? His hair was still in place. (none / 0) (#4)
    by observed on Wed Nov 09, 2011 at 09:24:30 PM EST
    Link: (none / 0) (#8)
    by oculus on Wed Nov 09, 2011 at 09:33:59 PM EST
    Funny mistake in the comments. (none / 0) (#20)
    by observed on Wed Nov 09, 2011 at 10:00:47 PM EST
    An Obama critic says that Obama "thinks there are 55 states".
    LOL---we all know it was 57.
    The modern GOP obviously has a rigorous IQ test for its members....something like the "no one above 54 inches" signs at carnival rides.

    I can see it a all now... (none / 0) (#52)
    by Edger on Thu Nov 10, 2011 at 08:38:56 AM EST
    President Perry: "We're going to bomb, uhhh, ummm, someone, somewhere. Damn, I forgot to write it down. But it'll come to me, you can take that to the bank!"

    And VP Romney will chime in to (none / 0) (#73)
    by oculus on Thu Nov 10, 2011 at 11:31:29 AM EST
    provide his fave bombing target.  

    B and Hill (none / 0) (#76)
    by Edger on Thu Nov 10, 2011 at 12:54:21 PM EST
    will do that way before Romney gets around to it

    KUSC FM is broadcasting LA Opera's (none / 0) (#2)
    by oculus on Wed Nov 09, 2011 at 09:10:43 PM EST
    production of Gounod's "Romeo and Juliet."  Tenor supposedly is the best thing since Villazon.  

    the corruption of mexican (none / 0) (#3)
    by cpinva on Wed Nov 09, 2011 at 09:20:26 PM EST
    police & military long pre-dates the "war on drugs", it pretty much goes back to the 1910 revolution. so really, nothing new here.

    True, but it was getting better (none / 0) (#27)
    by MKS on Wed Nov 09, 2011 at 11:02:09 PM EST
    after the PRI's monopoly was broken.  They were close to squeaky clean elections.....

    Perry's gaffe (none / 0) (#5)
    by Repack Rider on Wed Nov 09, 2011 at 09:27:37 PM EST
    ...is Dukakis in the tank, the yacht Monkey Business for Gary Hart or Gerald Ford stumbling down an aircraft stairway.

    This will be the eternal image, and the only thing anyone knows about him.

    I love the smell of schadenfreude in the morning.  Smells like victory.

    Ford played football. Today he'd probably (none / 0) (#11)
    by oculus on Wed Nov 09, 2011 at 09:37:10 PM EST
    catch a break re stumbling.  

    If Perry were quicker he could have said (none / 0) (#46)
    by ruffian on Thu Nov 10, 2011 at 06:56:11 AM EST
    'See, I've already abolished them in my head".

    But then, if he were quicker we would not be having this conversation.


    Ha (none / 0) (#47)
    by ruffian on Thu Nov 10, 2011 at 07:00:02 AM EST
    From Steve Kornacki at Salon, my bold:

    Later, Michele Bachmann appeared and said that she and the rest of the GOP candidates all feel sorry for Perry. That's what it's come to for the Texan: Three months after jumping into the GOP race and surging to a commanding lead, he's now being pitied by Michele Bachmann.

    Yeah, that says a lot.


    Ouch! (none / 0) (#58)
    by Zorba on Thu Nov 10, 2011 at 10:09:13 AM EST
    Being the object of Michele Bachmann's pity- that's gotta hurt!

    Penn state is nauseating (none / 0) (#12)
    by waldenpond on Wed Nov 09, 2011 at 09:43:15 PM EST
    I feel sick to my stomach.... what is wrong with the people at Penn State?  The students are upset that a man that protected his friend that allegedly assaulted little children is fired.  These people may have conspired to hide crimes etc and they are upset because of what ... friggin' football?  Power?  What?  This just seems a typical example of the 1% preying on the vulnerable and people are so warped, (this is so sick) they are chanting to keep this guy and cheering and singing their alma mater etc.

    What an absolute sickening spectacle.

    Penn State students are now rioting (5.00 / 1) (#35)
    by caseyOR on Wed Nov 09, 2011 at 11:47:27 PM EST
    over Paterno's firing. Thousands in the streets.

    Do these students not know the facts here? Do they not understand that these adults, Paterno among them, by their actions and inactions, allowed a man to prey on children for years?

    This does not reflect well on the students of Penn State. Then again, look at the example the adults at Penn State have set for these students.  


    These are the future (none / 0) (#71)
    by waldenpond on Thu Nov 10, 2011 at 11:26:58 AM EST
    banksters, financiers and politicians.  Morally bankrupt.  Now we see internal corruption doesn't come from work greed, it's inherent.

    I think (5.00 / 1) (#75)
    by AngryBlackGuy on Thu Nov 10, 2011 at 12:08:27 PM EST
    they are just young and stupid and unaware.

    It's a bad situation, but I don't want to knock them too much.  All of us made mistakes at that age.


    aren't all college football fans like this? (none / 0) (#16)
    by observed on Wed Nov 09, 2011 at 09:44:44 PM EST
    You think Florida folks would feel differently?

    Yeah. (5.00 / 3) (#31)
    by lilburro on Wed Nov 09, 2011 at 11:17:15 PM EST
    I think any coach running a major program as long-running as Paterno's (and until now, as clean) would produce this kind of reaction.  Plus if you've watched college football at all in the past 20 years, that man is lionized almost every weekend of the season by ESPN or whoever is showing the game.  They'll close out the game with a hero reel not of his players, but of him.

    I haven't been paying as close attention as others to what has developed, but what I read here today about Sandusky, and then in some other places today, is absolutely, 100% utterly mortifying.  What it most reminds me of are the various Catholic Church scandals.  You build up a powerful institution, and everyone begins thinking more about the institution than the individuals involved in it.  Same applies to the organization Sandusky set up, The Second Mile, he was in trouble with similar allegations well before he left there.  Just because he wasn't convicted doesn't mean he shouldn't have been ousted.  The entire area seems to have taken a narcotic called Successful College Football Program.  I understand that somewhat, I grew up in PA and owned plenty of Penn State stuff as a kid.

    All that commentary aside though, I don't know what to say.  I can't remember the last time I reacted with such horror to a news story.  It's horrible that Sandusky got away with it at all, but for so long, and seemingly so openly.  I feel for those kids whose rage isn't targeted at just one person but rather an entire complex that was willing to sacrifice them for what, in the daylight, ultimately matters to no one.


    Moderators are surprised (none / 0) (#17)
    by waldenpond on Wed Nov 09, 2011 at 09:49:36 PM EST
    On CNN and NBC.... pointing out that these students need to understand that childrens lives have been destroyed and that their is more to life than football....

    There is nothing wrong to cheering for your school, there is something seriously wrong with cheering for alleged predators.


    Moderators are fools (5.00 / 1) (#19)
    by observed on Wed Nov 09, 2011 at 09:54:17 PM EST
    College football already destroys lives.
    Look at the failure rates, and then how many people have permanent, serious injuries?
    Then, if the player does make it to the pros,
    he can look forward to dying 20 years earlier than the national average, though he might be spared some of the agony by early dementia.
    Modern American football does to young men what bullfighting does to bulls. It is thoroughly disgusting.

    An "All Things Considered" listener (5.00 / 0) (#21)
    by oculus on Wed Nov 09, 2011 at 10:16:28 PM EST
    e-mailed about whether baseball is still America's national sport.  He sd., look around at how many guys wear baseball caps on the street.  How many football helmets do you see?

    That makes as much sense (none / 0) (#28)
    by NYShooter on Wed Nov 09, 2011 at 11:05:50 PM EST
    as the tea party nimcompoops asking, "did you ever get a job from a poor person?"

    It's a pretty good metaphor for our foreign policy (none / 0) (#25)
    by Mr Natural on Wed Nov 09, 2011 at 10:55:52 PM EST
    or vice versa, or something.

    And, like our foriegn policy, it's much (none / 0) (#26)
    by observed on Wed Nov 09, 2011 at 11:00:29 PM EST
    better to be a fan, in the stands in the US, than in the arena.

    Easy now... (none / 0) (#54)
    by kdog on Thu Nov 10, 2011 at 08:54:43 AM EST
    no reason to slime the beautiful game of football.  

    A bull doesn't have free will...football players do. It can be a dangerous game, with risks of serious injury, but it is also a rewarding experience for millions of people.  It is fun to play.

    Thoroughly disgusting?  Seriously?


    Absolutely disgusing---no question. (none / 0) (#55)
    by observed on Thu Nov 10, 2011 at 09:12:51 AM EST
    There is no free will without correct information.
    The young person who loves football does not know what harm the sport can do to him.
    Football players are so unnaturally large now, compared to past years, that there is no way to play safely in the college or professional leagues.
    The fact you take pleasure watching people literally turn their brains into jello really gives me pause.
    Do you like boxing too?
    Do you enjoy watching Ali give speeches today?

    So (none / 0) (#56)
    by AngryBlackGuy on Thu Nov 10, 2011 at 09:34:29 AM EST
    In your world there would be no football or other contact sports like boxing or mixed martial arts?

    Are you really the rudest, least (none / 0) (#95)
    by observed on Thu Nov 10, 2011 at 04:37:38 PM EST
    accurate reader of comments on TL???
    I am expressing my own personal disgust at football.
    Supposing other people agreed with me, I expect that changes would be made to football rules to increase safety, if possible. Also in boxing, brain safety could actually be increased by removing the gloves. This change has actually been endorsed by the British physicians organization.

    Dude (none / 0) (#100)
    by AngryBlackGuy on Fri Nov 11, 2011 at 10:21:38 AM EST
    I just asked you whether you'd eliminate the sports if you were king.  Straight forward question with no shady motives behind it.

    And they call me angry?


    Yes I enjoy boxing... (none / 0) (#57)
    by kdog on Thu Nov 10, 2011 at 09:35:44 AM EST
    no better workout in sports than sparring a few rounds...ever tried it?  How about skydiving?  That sh*t can kill ya too.

    Watching Ali speak today is sad, yes...but we all die, we all deteriorate.  The question is do we all really live?  Ali lived, mastered his art and gave joy to millions, and joy to himself.  It's gotta feel pretty damn good to be champion of the world...to float like a butterfly and sting like a bee.  If such joy is worth shaving years off your life or risking serious injury is for each to decide for themselves.  As is the choice to be a spectator.  

    I don't play tackle football anymore, we play in a format called rough touch.  I've seen concussions, blown out knees, broken bones, f*cked up my own knee and had my bell rung, and just spent this past Sunday at the hospital with my teammate who hurt his knee...he can't wait to get his MRI to see if he will be back for the winter season.  And we pay for this priveledge.  Why?  Because it gives us joy that make it worth the risks to our bodies.  

    As for the pros, I am all for reasonable improvements and rule changes to make the game safer, especially youth football...personally I think the best idea is to go back to soft helmets or no helmets like rugby, and players will cease leading with their head encased in hard plastic.

    It's a question of taste, and what you value, safety or the joy of athletic competition and putting yourself to the test in a rugged physical challenge...your free to your opinion but I happen to enjoy both sports as a spectator and participant, and that doesn't make me a bull, it makes me human.


    Where did you (none / 0) (#61)
    by Edger on Thu Nov 10, 2011 at 10:24:27 AM EST
    see Ali speaking this morning kdog? Do you have a link for it?

    I didn't... (none / 0) (#62)
    by kdog on Thu Nov 10, 2011 at 10:31:59 AM EST
    observed asked if I have seen Ali speak with his Parkinson's "today", as in recently.

    It is sad, but when they talk about Ali in 100 years, it won't be remembering the broken man we see today, it will be remembering the champion of the world who beat Liston, Frazier 2 outta 3, and Foreman in the Rumble in the Jungle with the rope-a-dope. The master of the sweet science.


    Ahhh, sorry (none / 0) (#63)
    by Edger on Thu Nov 10, 2011 at 10:49:02 AM EST
    I misread. it's early out this morning...

    They'll also remember (none / 0) (#68)
    by sj on Thu Nov 10, 2011 at 11:12:26 AM EST
    his decision to risk jail as a conscientious objector rather than be conscripted to fight in the Viet Nam war.

    Indeed... (none / 0) (#72)
    by kdog on Thu Nov 10, 2011 at 11:29:29 AM EST
    another dangerous, yet highly fulfilling, game played by the champ.  

    Safety is not the be all end all, just one of many factors for those of free will to consider before engaging in any activity, be it sport or politics or life in general.


    Sweet science (none / 0) (#78)
    by jondee on Thu Nov 10, 2011 at 01:36:14 PM EST
    that's a p.r term invented by the people Dylan satirized in Who Killed Davey Moore?

    Sorry Bro, but I calls 'em like I see 'em.


    Don't be sorry... (none / 0) (#81)
    by kdog on Thu Nov 10, 2011 at 01:53:22 PM EST
    thats your view, I gots mine, observed has his.  

    We're all cool unless somebody starts talking about banning boxing.


    And another thing..:) (none / 0) (#83)
    by jondee on Thu Nov 10, 2011 at 02:03:58 PM EST
    something about two guys doing a mandingo-galadiator act for people in 2k ringside seats, strikes me as very late-Roman Empire-ish..

    A little overly-decadant for my taste..But that's just me..


    F8ck the ringside seats.... (none / 0) (#85)
    by kdog on Thu Nov 10, 2011 at 02:11:22 PM EST
    seeing what you're made of in a test of strength, speed, skill, perserverance, and brains...and coming out on top.  Pure f8ckin' joy jondee...but maybe thats just me.

    And sport is a better outlet for these natural instincts than the stock market or killing each other for food, or in senseless war.  No joke, I credit rough touch football and de-cleating a guy coming in my zone as part of the reason I'm such a non-violent sort...save it for the field or the ring.


    I like the seeing what you're (5.00 / 1) (#91)
    by jondee on Thu Nov 10, 2011 at 02:36:54 PM EST
    made of part, I just don't like the physically detroying the other person part..

    And don't get me started on the destroying someone for other people's entertainment part..Nero and Caligula time..


    Some guys do it... (none / 0) (#92)
    by kdog on Thu Nov 10, 2011 at 02:58:45 PM EST
    in empty gyms for which they pay a membership fee for the priveledge.

    Nobody destroys anybody anymore...it's not bare-knuckle on the Bowery circa 1870.  Pugilists wear gloves with a ref right there ready to call it.


    wasn't there an incident (none / 0) (#94)
    by jondee on Thu Nov 10, 2011 at 03:43:55 PM EST
    in a high-profile fight a few years back, in which a guy (somehow) snuck past the ref with almost no padding in his gloves, and wound up ending the other fighter's career and nearly blinding him?

    It's a question of morals. If you enjoy (none / 0) (#96)
    by observed on Thu Nov 10, 2011 at 04:41:16 PM EST
    watching people turn themselves into vegetables, I can't approve.
    Brain injury is a HUGE problem in professional football and hockey (if not other sports).
    The effects are devastating, and until recently, hardly known to the public at large.

    I enjoy athletic competition... (none / 0) (#102)
    by kdog on Fri Nov 11, 2011 at 11:00:53 AM EST
    in contact sports, as a participant and a spectator...I take no joy in injury of the participants, but it is part of the game.

    hey (none / 0) (#103)
    by CST on Fri Nov 11, 2011 at 11:31:38 AM EST
    looks like I'm finally heading up your way tommorow with mi hermana.  We are visiting friends, but were also gonna head down to Wall Street at some point to check out the scene.  Let me know if you still want to meet up at some point.  Oculus or anyone else who hangs out in NY is welcome too!

    Not tomorrow! (none / 0) (#104)
    by kdog on Fri Nov 11, 2011 at 11:39:11 AM EST
    I'm doing moldings for my sister way out in far east bubblef*ck...if I bail she will kill me.

    How long you in town for, just the day?  A Sunday afternoon pint and visit to OWS could work.  Email me and I'll see what I can do, its in my user profile.

    Just don't wear your Pats jersey, this week especially:)


    Dumb (none / 0) (#64)
    by ScottW714 on Thu Nov 10, 2011 at 11:01:14 AM EST
    There is no free will without correct information.

    Unless you're privy to some top secret information, it's obviously available to anyone.  The free will includes:

    • The will to not want to know
    • The will to blow of the educational aspect
    • The free will to not attend
    • The will to have a pipe-dream
    • And on and on...

    How many people have received college degrees from football that had no chance of making the pros or going to college ?  Not just football, all college sports, because they all have injuries.

    It ruins many lives, but each and every one of those lives made a choice.  Unlike the bulls who not one made the choice.  Bad analogy and super ridiculous claim.


    I would add... (none / 0) (#70)
    by kdog on Thu Nov 10, 2011 at 11:15:23 AM EST
    it enriches untold more lives than it "ruins".

    And even of those who do wind up paralyzed or seriously injured, how many of them say they have no regrets and would take the gridiron again tomorrow if they could?  Because they love the game so much.

    The life some nanny-state types would create if they could is not a life particularly worth living imo.


    And... (none / 0) (#77)
    by ScottW714 on Thu Nov 10, 2011 at 01:07:53 PM EST
     ...there's a perk or two to playing college ball that imagine are quite nice on a post-win Saturday night.  The ones the NCAA can't touch.

    Observed mentioned brains to mush, what football player has mush for brains due to football ?

    Ali, he has Parkinsons which is genetic, same as millions, the fact that he was boxer is coincidence only.  Plenty of sharp boxers still kicking it.

    I can't think of one athlete who has 'mush' for brains in which the sport was the cause.


    I wouldn't go that far... (none / 0) (#80)
    by kdog on Thu Nov 10, 2011 at 01:50:58 PM EST
    The late great Joe Frazier was what I would call "punchy" in retirement...not mush, but not firing at optimal speed.  observed is right that the NFL does take years off your life, and post-concussion syndrome can be hell.  And there are those paralyzed playing the game, even killed.

    Life is a gamble, and the harder you live it the shorter your odds to live to 85 unscathed.  Our life is our gift to savor or squander as we wish.  

    Personally I think never playing football or boxing or skydiving or any other "dangerous" activity is the squandering.  My cousin for example is a huge skydiving buff, she had an accident and broke her freakin' back, was in therapy for months and still deals with pain.  But the second she was able, she got right back in the plane and strapped on a chute...cuz thats her passion, her life.


    just genetic (none / 0) (#82)
    by jondee on Thu Nov 10, 2011 at 01:55:36 PM EST
    you've gotta be kidding..

    All those blows to the head from Liston, Cooper, Foreman, Bonavena, Frazier etc had nothing whatsoever to do with Ali's present condition?


    Don't forget Jerry Quarry (none / 0) (#84)
    by jeffinalabama on Thu Nov 10, 2011 at 02:08:28 PM EST
    and the term 'punch-drunk.'

    I will occasionally watch boxing or MMA, especially olympics time, but it's a dangerous sport.

    And I've jumped out of enough airplanes... knowing that i'd be the first one on the ground if the 'chute didn't open ;-P .


    Can't get into the MMA... (none / 0) (#86)
    by kdog on Thu Nov 10, 2011 at 02:14:04 PM EST
    I can appreciate the skill involved, but it watches too much like a street brawl to me...either too boring or too gruesome for my taste.  I much prefer boxing...there is a beauty to it at its best that I find MMA lacks.  But it is all a question of taste...a lot of friends love the MMA.

    It reminds me of (none / 0) (#88)
    by jeffinalabama on Thu Nov 10, 2011 at 02:21:19 PM EST
    Krav Maga. We had adopted some parts way back in the dark ages when i was in the army, or some outfits did, like the Rangers... you know, when we formed a line, wore blue coats, used muskets, and had fifes and drums...

    Dating myself a little bit ;-P


    Ridiculous. There are lots (none / 0) (#87)
    by shoephone on Thu Nov 10, 2011 at 02:16:03 PM EST
    and, oh, by the way... this high school footballer just died a few weeks ago after suffering BRAIN BLEED from an injury during the game. Numerous reports of brain damage from concussions have been coming out in recent months. High school, college and pro players.

    There are ways to avoid (none / 0) (#89)
    by jeffinalabama on Thu Nov 10, 2011 at 02:28:42 PM EST
    many of these injuries with some equipment changes.  There are many more deaths caused by a combination of heat and obesity than head trauma.

    I don't doubt there is more (none / 0) (#90)
    by shoephone on Thu Nov 10, 2011 at 02:36:48 PM EST
    that could be done for safety, especially where equipment and helmets are concerned. The stats on the number of former players with significant brain trauma are frightening.

    The information about brain injury (none / 0) (#97)
    by observed on Thu Nov 10, 2011 at 04:42:56 PM EST
    is not obviously available to everyone. Do you think little league football coaches are explaining that a football career can lead to death at 50, after several years of dementia?
    That is, if they even know. You assume too much.

    Of course they know (none / 0) (#98)
    by shoephone on Thu Nov 10, 2011 at 07:07:10 PM EST
    The information has been out there. There has been an enormous amount of press about it in the past two years. In 2009, Congress held hearings about it. The NFL's Roger Goodell was taken to task. Sen. Tom Coburn publicly castigated then-USC safety Taylor Mays for being one of the worst offenders committing head injuries (which I didn't think was quite fair, but I've known Taylor since he was a child, so I'm somewhat biased on that).

    Last fall, the NYT wrote about this study:

    A 2000 study surveyed 1,090 former N.F.L. players and found more than 60 percent had suffered at least one concussion in their careers and 26 percent had had three or more. Those who had had concussions reported more problems with memory, concentration, speech impediments, headaches and other neurological problems than those who had not, the survey found.

    and this study:

    A 2007 study conducted by the University of North Carolina's Center for the Study of Retired Athletes found that of the 595 retired N.F.L. players who recalled sustaining three or more concussions on the football field, 20.2 percent said they had been found to have depression. That is three times the rate of players who have not sustained concussions.

    The information is out there, has been out there, and is a big topic for leagues, from Pee Wee on up to the NFL.


    Pick a Sport (none / 0) (#101)
    by ScottW714 on Fri Nov 11, 2011 at 10:30:21 AM EST
    Boxing, the NFL, MMA, or peewee ball ?

    These are four different topics, one of which is on the parents, and the others are professional athletes.

    Obviously kids are whole different beast then grown men.  But using the death of a kid as an example for professional sports is weak.

    And Ali, Michael Fox will be where he is at in several years.  Not exactly scientific to say the man has take so many blows it has to had an effect.

    And conclusions in the NFl in the past were not treated properly.  I suspect the study helped formulate their new rules in which their condition and ability to play is determined by a 3rd party.  The NFL is very pro-active in trying to diminish injuries.  But sometimes, like the new kick off position doesn't work or even made it worse.  But they are pro-active.

    That being said, they still have a choice and using kids as examples who may not have a choice or the choice is left up to a parent is in weak.

    And like smoking/drinking/eating bad, if grown a$$ adults choose to participate in activities that shorten their lives, in the good ole USA that is okay-dokay.    

    I hammer my liver all weekend long for free, where's the outrage, if only I could make league minimum(~$300k) in the process.  Or do we need others cheering me on for it to be disgusting.


    Please point to where I said (none / 0) (#105)
    by shoephone on Sat Nov 12, 2011 at 09:59:25 PM EST
    that no one should be allowed to play football.

    I didn't say that, didn't advocate for that, and don't believe in that. All I said was that sustained brain damage from concussions has been well-studied and talked about for years.

    I happen to like watching college football. And, gee, wouldn't it be great if better equipment was devised to guard against those brain injuries where 34-year-old former football players exhibit signs of dementia?


    As for boxing... (none / 0) (#106)
    by shoephone on Sat Nov 12, 2011 at 10:06:21 PM EST
    I don't care for it. Two men bashing each other's brains in for millions of dollars while calling it "sport" is about the closest thing to barbarism  I can name. Oh, BTW, I know something about boxing, as a college boyfriend taught me how to box, and schooled me in the techniques while watching the pro matches on TV. And I still think it's barbaric.

    I'd imagine the feelings of misguided (none / 0) (#32)
    by brodie on Wed Nov 09, 2011 at 11:30:20 PM EST
    solidarity with Paterno run much stronger in very isolated rural places like Happy Valley which has one claim to fame, namely the football program.

    Penn State Bd. of Trustees fires (none / 0) (#13)
    by oculus on Wed Nov 09, 2011 at 09:43:24 PM EST
    President and Paterno. LAT

    Good. (5.00 / 1) (#18)
    by Anne on Wed Nov 09, 2011 at 09:53:38 PM EST
    There will be those who think that, given Paterno's long tenure, he should have been given the courtesy of leaving on his terms, but by not doing more to protect the children involved, he forfeited the right to be in charge of his fate.

    I'd be interested to hear Jeralyn (none / 0) (#49)
    by smott on Thu Nov 10, 2011 at 07:56:11 AM EST
    ...or Armando weigh in on the civil litigation PSU may now be open to from the victims/victims parents.

    You have to think Paterno knew enough about Sandusky in 1998 to make certain he'd never be HC.

    One interesting angle - the DA who declined to prosecute Sandusky in 1999 I believe, went missing prior to his retirement a few years later...declared dead.  Computer found in the river, hard drive removed/destroyed.

    Things that make ya go Hmmm.

    http://gcobb.com/2011/11/10/paterno-mcqueary-curley-schultz-enabled-sandusky-to-continue-molesting-c hildren/

    Money graf :

     Ray Gricar, the district attorney who didn't file charges against Sandusky, subsequently went missing in 2005, and was declared legally dead in 2011, less than a year before he planned to retire and all his files and evidence would have been turned over to the incoming DA. His computer was found in a river with the hard drive removed. The hard drive was recovered a little further up the river and was completely destroyed


    Yes, Ray Gricar, The Centre County (PA} (none / 0) (#66)
    by KeysDan on Thu Nov 10, 2011 at 11:07:52 AM EST
    went missing as of April 15, 2005. His work laptop was found in the river in July 2005, badly water damaged but complete although missing the hard drive. The hard drive was found two months later badly damaged and police, FBI and the Secret Service were unable to retrieve data.  In April 2009, investigators said that internet searches on ways to destroy computer hard drives were  conducted on Ray Gricar's home computer leading up to the time of his disappearance.   In March of this year, the district attorney indicated that she was reviewing the case.  

    Just Hit MSNBC (none / 0) (#93)
    by ScottW714 on Thu Nov 10, 2011 at 03:01:22 PM EST
    Interesting story about (none / 0) (#23)
    by observed on Wed Nov 09, 2011 at 10:23:44 PM EST
    a young rugby player who claims that after a stroker, he became gay.
    I'm not posting this as a joke. From what I understand, personality changes after a stroke are not uncommon. That's a big change, though!

    Kazakh metaphors for women (none / 0) (#40)
    by observed on Thu Nov 10, 2011 at 02:51:18 AM EST
    Like most men everywhere, Kazakhs like to talk about women.
    They often refer to women as flowers, but the flavor of the metaphor comes from the steppes.
    A young man at my gym attempted to explain this to me recently. He was saying that women are like flowers. So far, so good. Then he was saying "the flowers that horses eat" to convey something.
    Hmm.. interesting. Finally I understand that he means grass. So we have flowers, and horses eating grass. It's enough to make any red-blooded man want to get married right away!

    At least the horses aren't trampling the grass (5.00 / 1) (#45)
    by ruffian on Thu Nov 10, 2011 at 06:54:31 AM EST
    Site Violator: Infogravity (none / 0) (#50)
    by vicndabx on Thu Nov 10, 2011 at 08:22:45 AM EST