Saturday Open Thread: Knock Yourselves Out

The media says Mitt Romney and Newt Gingrich are "trading jabs" with Mitt Romney hoping for a "knockout." The idea of either one of these guys in a boxing ring is pretty comical.

Update: Miami Herald/Tampa Bay Times poll just released: Curtains for Newt? He's trailing Mitt by 11 points, and the paper says Mitt's lead looks "insurmountable", especially since it cuts across "geographic, ethnic and gender lines." Why did Herman Cain board a sinking ship?

This is an open thread, all topics welcome.

< New Zealand Paper Criticizes Megaupload Raid | Richard O'Dwyer: The Other Copyright Infrngement Extradition Case >
  • The Online Magazine with Liberal coverage of crime-related political and injustice news

  • Contribute To TalkLeft

  • Display: Sort:
    More linky goodness from Wisconsin (5.00 / 2) (#4)
    by Towanda on Sat Jan 28, 2012 at 05:59:33 PM EST
    for the lawyers here, a big story for lawyers there that got only brief play before the big political story of the tsunami of criminal charges deluging the despicable governor's current and former staffers in what is called, of course, Walkergate.  (And there are interesting similarities:  secret taping system becomes  secret email network, for example, and the secret emails now uncovered are expected to be evidence of a coverup -- and charges of evidence-tampering.)

    The New York Times editorial board denounces the Wisconsin Supreme Court extreme rightwing justice, Gableman, here.  Already censured for his unethical acts before, he's upped the unethical ante yet again with his refusal to recuse himself in cases to come that would be conflicts of interest.

    In cases already decided in which this conflict existed, as the editorial notes, at least one petition for rehearing has been filed -- on the open-meeting law decision of the high court that effectively made Walker's anti-collective bargaining budget law.  What next for the law?  for the recall, if Walker resigns?  Lots of interesting debate about all of that and more.

    What's needed (none / 0) (#6)
    by CoralGables on Sat Jan 28, 2012 at 06:27:38 PM EST
    is someone that can run against Walker and win. The last poll I saw had Walker winning against all the various Dem candidates that were considering entering the race.

    Wonder if Feingold could win? (none / 0) (#7)
    by oculus on Sat Jan 28, 2012 at 06:32:19 PM EST
    Asked and answered (none / 0) (#9)
    by Towanda on Sat Jan 28, 2012 at 06:55:30 PM EST
    many times, here and elsewhere:  No.  So he says, and so it seems, as he's very happy as a prof with no classes, paid to write a book.

    And remember, he couldn't win a statewide campaign last time, his first time facing a truly tough race since his first race (which he won because of the three-way split in which the other candidates took each other down).

    So far, the only Dem candidate to announce also would be bad, as she has lost two statewide races (and Wisconsin never has elected a woman as governor -- nor even to the U.S. Senate, and only two to Congress at all, while several states have elected two women to the Senate at the same time).

    The leading Dem candidate is Barrett, the Milwaukee mayor who lost to Walker last time but could win this time, I think -- in part because he is from Milwaukee, and a lot of Dem voters do not like the Madison mindset of the party that gave them the previous governor, Doyle.

    Barrett is a great guy, much like Feingold in truly working for clean government, and a former member of Congress for decades.  And the union rank-and-file are for Barrett.  But the top union leaders have been bad-mouthing him, because he does not kowtow to them (or anyone); they are making a mess of matters.  We will see.


    Well I do know Feingold (none / 0) (#13)
    by oculus on Sat Jan 28, 2012 at 07:22:13 PM EST
    says he won't run. But if he couldn't win that answers my question. Thanks.

    PS. Just an observation. You are CC's equal re WI politics.


    That said: Of course (none / 0) (#15)
    by Towanda on Sat Jan 28, 2012 at 07:32:24 PM EST
    pols will be pols.  Feingold's ego is as big as the state, and if he is begged on bended knee . . . and what the heck, he's been divorced only as many times as has Noot.  (The divorces hurt Feingold, too, in this very church-going state.  That said, it was surprising progress for such a church-going state to elect not just one but two Jews as U.S. Senators at the same time, but as governor, and in these increasingly fundamentalist days, I dunno.)

    This raises the important race in Wisconsin that really will affect others across the country, of course:  The race for the open U.S. Senate seat.  So far, it looks like it also will go to the Repubs -- unless, frankly, Feingold gets back into that one.  I doubt that he will, but he'd do better than any Dem talking about it now -- and with the recall fervor, if he would be willing to really run a campaign this time, he could take it.


    CC's equal (none / 0) (#40)
    by MKS on Sun Jan 29, 2012 at 10:24:01 AM EST
    Where is CC?

    Same person?


    No. CC lives in Milwaukee and Towanda (5.00 / 1) (#78)
    by oculus on Sun Jan 29, 2012 at 01:25:03 PM EST
    lives in Chicago.  

    She got sick of us (none / 0) (#81)
    by Militarytracy on Sun Jan 29, 2012 at 01:56:00 PM EST
    Sometimes we suck

    That poll is extremely flawed (none / 0) (#8)
    by Towanda on Sat Jan 28, 2012 at 06:48:33 PM EST
    which is to be expected from the very conservative sponsor, the Marquette Law School, and the pollster (from the UW-Madison faculty but mired in previous problems with his work for the rightwing think tank WRPI).

    Bloggers in the state have posted analyses about the problems with the poll, if you want to look -- but consider factors such as a 7%! margin of error.


    I put my Wisconsin trust (5.00 / 1) (#11)
    by CoralGables on Sat Jan 28, 2012 at 07:14:52 PM EST
    in you. You speak I listen. Who do you think the Dem's will eventually put up?

    Awww, whaddaIknow? I just read (none / 0) (#14)
    by Towanda on Sat Jan 28, 2012 at 07:26:07 PM EST
    a lot and discuss a lot, with smarter people.

    But I really don't know who the Dems will pick, not at this point, in part because of the ongoing muddle being made by the few union leaders, and in part because of the ongoing battle (for many decades now) by the Madisonians to retain control of the state party -- a mistake, and they need to bring back the winning days of a coalition of Madisonians and Milwaukeeans -- and in part because the White House may step in, as it did in 2010 to boot out the leading Dem candidate.  The result of the state party disarray from the intervention of the Chicago Way?  Walker.

    I have my picks, several of them that would be fine.  And I have my list of those who would be disastrous, and I bet that one of them will be picked by the Madisonians and the White House.

    Bottom line:  I have my doubts that Walker would lose; his forces are fighting mad as well, and well-organized and well-funded.  But it really isn't about Walker; it's about his agenda, and that has been slowed down, which is a win already.  And, as noted, if he becomes Perp Walker, well, then that goes into the courts -- where several cases on the recall also remain pending that also could turn everything up, down, and upside-down, as already has happened with the decisions that have come down.  

    Those decisions already are delaying the recall election for months, and more delays will be sought and won by the Repubs (because they run to the courts of the infamous Waukesha County of the stolen votes in the state high court election).  So plenty of time remains for the Dems to decide.


    "Perp Walker" is very funny! (none / 0) (#16)
    by cymro on Sat Jan 28, 2012 at 07:40:28 PM EST
    Kudos to you--or whoever came up with that.

    <blush> (none / 0) (#18)
    by Towanda on Sat Jan 28, 2012 at 08:01:41 PM EST

    Aha, found a link on the flawed polling (none / 0) (#12)
    by Towanda on Sat Jan 28, 2012 at 07:16:52 PM EST
    in terms of weighting, too.

    The important point is that when the weighting is corrected, the possible Dem candidates for gov are ahead of Walker.  (And Obama remains ahead, as well.)


    Thanks (5.00 / 1) (#17)
    by CoralGables on Sat Jan 28, 2012 at 07:51:54 PM EST
    much appreciated

    That was a very disturbing poll (none / 0) (#46)
    by MKS on Sun Jan 29, 2012 at 10:41:48 AM EST
    especially after all the work to get the recall signatures....

    If it is bogus, it sure is good propaganda.....Will help Walker with fundraising....


    needed to beat Walker (none / 0) (#56)
    by Capt Howdy on Sun Jan 29, 2012 at 11:17:18 AM EST
    I heard some local (I think union) dems talking about someone named Kathleen Falk.  as I understood my eavesdropping they liked her.

    know anything about her?


    See #9 comment, below (none / 0) (#72)
    by Towanda on Sun Jan 29, 2012 at 12:13:09 PM EST
    Falk is the only Dem to announce for governor.

    A fine public servant in Dane County, but she has lost twice statewide, because she didn't do much outside of Dane County.  Madisonians have to come to Milwaukee, listen to Milwaukeeans (rather than talk at them), and understand the stark and major differences between their town and urban life.

    Madison is said to be in Wisconsin but not of Wisconsin.  Madison has been protected from the economic meltdown by having little industry; its "industry" is the state government -- so it has had some hits there, with budget cuts for years (including under Dem governors, not just Walker), but nothing like the hits to Milwaukee and other truly industrial cities.  

    I have yet to hear her say anything that says that she gets this as yet, but it's possible -- and she does get what it means to be a true Dem.  For now, she polls very poorly against Walker, but it's early days, because the Repubs have won court rulings that will delay the recall election for a long time to come.


    thank you (none / 0) (#85)
    by Capt Howdy on Sun Jan 29, 2012 at 03:06:49 PM EST
    interesting to know
    they seemed to think she might have union support.
    but I guess almost anyone would.  if you know what I mean.
    I often hear things at the diner at breakfast I have further investigate.  I live in a surprisingly political little town so the tables in the back are for the old guys who have been talking about this stuff there at for breakfast for many many years.

    I dont rate sitting at one of "the" tables. but I always sit close enough to listen.  I almost always disagree with everything they say but I almost always learn something.


    Yes and no. (none / 0) (#10)
    by Towanda on Sat Jan 28, 2012 at 07:01:20 PM EST
    Maybe so, on the first suggestion, although efforts and funds have to be focused first on the six pending recalls already.  Walker is just one, as I'm sure that you know.  And he has raised more than $12 million, two-thirds of that from donors outside of the state, for himself and the others, who also are raising more.  The Dems have a hard road ahead on that.

    Plus, the possibility now that the John Doe probe will make Walker a perp walker is turning much upside down right now.  If his Barbie doll lieutenant gov replaces him, the current recall of her may be moot, and that has to start over.

    As for your second suggeston:  I hope not, and I doubt it, on your second idea.  I've read a lot of analyses comparing judiciaries in elective vs. appointive states.  No thanks.  Elective judges worked well there for a century, for good reasons to do with our good government then, and the need is for campaign finance reform first to kick out the Kochs and their ilk.  That would get out the Gablemans, Prossers, Zieglers, et al., on the court and prevent it from being bought again.


    Newt has just scored the coveted (5.00 / 0) (#20)
    by caseyOR on Sat Jan 28, 2012 at 08:51:28 PM EST
    Herman Cain endorsement. Boy howdy, he's on fire now. And just now CBS Evening News aired a clip of Palin questioning the validity of a nomination that ignores the voice of the people. Take that, GOP elites for Mitt. Stop your bullying ways!

    Oh, well then. Or was that really (none / 0) (#22)
    by Towanda on Sat Jan 28, 2012 at 09:47:17 PM EST
    Stephen Colbert, wearing (literally and figuratively) his Herman Cain hat?

    what do yo all think of Mitt's Brokaw ad? (5.00 / 1) (#23)
    by Lil on Sat Jan 28, 2012 at 11:57:05 PM EST
    I thought it was a good idea. The public needs to be reminded of the "news", since we seem to have such short memories. I would never have thought someone like Newt could be ressurected after being such a disgraced politician. But then again half of the Nixon administration made their way back into the fold even after the administration was found to be corrupt beyond the pale. I wonder about candidates using old news footage to remind people how "bad" someone was; it could be a good tool. Wonder why it is not used more. I am always astounded at what short memories people have.

    This may be (5.00 / 1) (#27)
    by Edger on Sun Jan 29, 2012 at 07:47:16 AM EST
    the most genuine, sensible political speech you'll ever see...

    Jill Stein: People's State of the Union

    Yup, (5.00 / 2) (#28)
    by NYShooter on Sun Jan 29, 2012 at 08:25:53 AM EST
    Beautifully thought out, succinctly constructed, and bravely challenging.

    Of course, there's nothing new here, many forward and clear thinking progressives/Liberals have offered these ideas into the public weal. I think the difference here is that Dr. Stein's manifesto is all-encompassing, very thorough, yet compact,  and seems to have a zip and snap to it that (God forgive me for what I'm about to say) gives you a fresh confidence of "Yes, we can."

    Excuse me now while I put down this keyboard, walk out into the backyard, ........and shoot myself.


    4th kind is on now, dubbed in Russian (5.00 / 1) (#33)
    by observed on Sun Jan 29, 2012 at 09:09:19 AM EST
    This ought to be fun.
    As I recall, the most realistic thing about that film was the depiction of all the forests around Nome.

    Actually, MY opinion was that the film was a scathing indictment of UFO fanatics and their mass hysteria, but that's not the usual take.

    It was a really bad movie (none / 0) (#35)
    by Militarytracy on Sun Jan 29, 2012 at 09:20:29 AM EST
    I watched a little blurb recently for Game of Thrones, showing and discussing them filming in Croatia.  Croatia looks amazing.

    Well, if I were Croatian, of the proper (5.00 / 1) (#37)
    by observed on Sun Jan 29, 2012 at 09:56:33 AM EST
    ethnicity and religion, and not a woman,
    I might find Croatia a delightful place to retire.

    Was it Croatia or Bosnia which was (none / 0) (#38)
    by observed on Sun Jan 29, 2012 at 10:04:53 AM EST
    just honoring a WWII "hero" who sent local Jews to the death camps? I can't remember.

    Croatia, I think (none / 0) (#79)
    by gyrfalcon on Sun Jan 29, 2012 at 01:48:52 PM EST
    Oh yeah, and not gay. (none / 0) (#95)
    by observed on Sun Jan 29, 2012 at 07:50:00 PM EST
    Given all those conditions, I might feel I could spend time in Croatia without fearing for my life.

    Never seen 4th Kind nor (none / 0) (#43)
    by brodie on Sun Jan 29, 2012 at 10:37:38 AM EST
    had I heard of it until now.  But I've never bought the kind of easy mass hysteria explanation for all those stories that seemed to suddenly pop up twenty years ago.  Govt psy ops and/or individual fakery seems much more likely in most cases.

    A very good movie entertainment about alien abductions was the ca 1993 drama Intruders, starring Richard Crenna as a skeptical psychiatrist and Mare Winningham as one of the alleged abductees.  Not yet released on DVD, sadly.

    Another decent fun romp in this area in straight tv drama format is Fire in the Sky by the same producer Tracy Torme as Intruders.  Based on the 1970s bizarre case of logger Travis Walton.  Starring James Garner playing the skeptical local sheriff.


    well, I've known a couple of (none / 0) (#48)
    by observed on Sun Jan 29, 2012 at 10:44:24 AM EST
    UFO fanatics rather well. In fact, one of them has run a national UFO reporting hotline for 20 years. Interesting fact; he used to work for the CIA (cue eerie music).

    One clue the movie gives to the director's view is the character of the African linguist who hears an ancient language in the screeching and moaning which is heard in the hypnosis sessions.
    The problem is, NO ONE knows what the sounds of an ancient language were. The idea that this "expert" is hearing that language is the sign the director doesn't want us to believe the whole story.  My take is that Abbey Tyler is an obviously mentally ill huxter. When push comes to shove, and her story is challenged, she kills her daughter rather than face the truth.


    Aw, Gingrich says "facts don't matter" (5.00 / 1) (#39)
    by observed on Sun Jan 29, 2012 at 10:23:51 AM EST
    to Romney.
    Looks like his flameout is going to be epic.

    Heh, well I'm watching Reliable Sources (none / 0) (#42)
    by Militarytracy on Sun Jan 29, 2012 at 10:37:12 AM EST
    and there were no witnesses that wanted to go on ABC to refute his ex-wife.  Facts do matter to Gingrich, the ones he makes up.

    I think Newt said his daughter (none / 0) (#47)
    by jimakaPPJ on Sun Jan 29, 2012 at 10:42:54 AM EST
    and friends....

    Which of these has RS contacted and received a denial??

    Just asking.


    Ahem. Which of them has contacted ABC? (5.00 / 1) (#49)
    by observed on Sun Jan 29, 2012 at 10:46:11 AM EST
    That was the question. Pathetic deflection.

    Oh please (none / 0) (#51)
    by jimakaPPJ on Sun Jan 29, 2012 at 10:57:15 AM EST
    Per RS...
    and there were no witnesses that wanted to go on ABC to refute his ex-wife.

    RS has made a claim. My question is that Newt said that his daughter and friends wanted/tried.

    Has RS contacted anyone????

    Try some logic.


    The panel was focused on journalism (none / 0) (#60)
    by Militarytracy on Sun Jan 29, 2012 at 11:25:33 AM EST
    All the news agencies have sought the witnesses and checked and double checked with ABC.  The witnesses were a fiction.  Did you hear, Murdock's son has been arrested?  A crushing blow to fiction journalism.

    Nonsense is nonsense (none / 0) (#71)
    by jimakaPPJ on Sun Jan 29, 2012 at 11:55:28 AM EST
    If everyone has sought out everyone then everyone should name the everyone and quote what the everyone has said.

    Since they haven't bothered to do that....it is a "he said - he said."

    ABO, MT. ABO.


    And this is nonsense (5.00 / 0) (#80)
    by gyrfalcon on Sun Jan 29, 2012 at 01:52:22 PM EST
    Do try to keep up.  Newt's campaign officially acknowledged publicly several days ago that no such "witnesses" were offered.  At all.

    Not really (none / 0) (#88)
    by jimakaPPJ on Sun Jan 29, 2012 at 03:49:41 PM EST
    "Tonight, after persistent questioning by our staff, the Gingrich campaign concedes now Speaker Gingrich was wrong -- both in his debate answer, and in our interview yesterday," King reported. "Gingrich spokesman R.C. Hammond says the only people the Gingrich campaign offered to ABC were his two daughters from his first marriage."


    My point remains. RS didn't ask anyone. The daughters were available.


    You haven't the slightest clue ... (none / 0) (#96)
    by Yman on Sun Jan 29, 2012 at 08:29:44 PM EST
    ... who RS spoke with, or what they said, yet you claim it's merely Gingrich's word against RS.  Of course, it's already been established that Gingrich lied in this matter.



    Oh, good grief (none / 0) (#100)
    by gyrfalcon on Thu Feb 02, 2012 at 02:35:27 PM EST
    The daughters are not the issue.  They came out with a strong statement right away supporting their father's version of events-- though just curiously, how do you suppose they would have the slightest knowledge of what Gingrich said to his wife in private?  Or those nonexistent neighbors and friends, for that matter?

    The daughters didn't need to be "asked" because they were already (repeatedly) on the record.


    It really bothers me that an aging (5.00 / 1) (#65)
    by Militarytracy on Sun Jan 29, 2012 at 11:43:28 AM EST
    Mitch McConnell has aging facial similarities with my grandma Vera starting with that weak chin.  He could almost be family, she would have really kicked his a$$ :)

    I find myself thinking he bears a (none / 0) (#73)
    by Anne on Sun Jan 29, 2012 at 12:22:14 PM EST
    remarkable similarity to some of the fish in our fish tank: I keep expecting his eyes to start working independently of each other, and when his mouth opens, I feel an urge to reach for the fish food...

    She went through a time of having a (none / 0) (#82)
    by Militarytracy on Sun Jan 29, 2012 at 02:02:04 PM EST
    hyperthyroid condition.  That was when her face looked most like Mitch, weak chin and bulging eyes and innerly nervous as hell.  As soon as they calmed her thyroid down the similarity lessened to just the chin. He also reminds me of Vera's father when he aged too who was half Native American, something about the skin going South around those cheek bones and that chin.  Does McConnell have any Native American heritage?  Would he have a heart attack if I asked?

    Always thought that he drank too much. (none / 0) (#94)
    by Lil on Sun Jan 29, 2012 at 06:08:42 PM EST
    That's how his face looks to me.

    How would Noot look in boxer shorts? (none / 0) (#1)
    by Towanda on Sat Jan 28, 2012 at 04:18:40 PM EST
    You can get a glimpse here.


    Too bad that it's not one of the books that gives us a look inside, intrigued as I am by the blurb about dressing up Noot in bullwhips and black leather.  Perhaps Callista has a video from their boudoir.

    <shudder, again>

    Now, to be all fair and balanced, here is a look at how hawt Mitt may be in boxer shorts.  (Of course, more correctly, a Mormon ought to be in "tightie whities."

    I particularly enjoy the variety of facial expressions to be pasted onto Der Mittster's mug.

    Has anyone (none / 0) (#2)
    by Ga6thDem on Sat Jan 28, 2012 at 05:03:13 PM EST
    here tried the duckduckgo search engine and if did you find it to be a good engine?

    Josh uses it (none / 0) (#3)
    by Militarytracy on Sat Jan 28, 2012 at 05:33:01 PM EST
    Seems like it works great

    because you dont' want to use google? (none / 0) (#19)
    by observed on Sat Jan 28, 2012 at 08:43:58 PM EST
    DDG isn't for lazy folks. (none / 0) (#24)
    by EL seattle on Sun Jan 29, 2012 at 01:50:33 AM EST
    And that's not a bad thing, I think.  It could use some more customizable search features, but it's getting there. And it's not bloated with scripts yet. (At least not that I've noticed.)

    And I like the fact that they don't add your query to a database.  Their privacy policy is one of the best I've seen in, like, ever. Personally, I usually use DDG as my first search tool, and then try another search site if it's not finding what I'm looking for right away (which is only about 5% of the time).


    I've been trying it out (none / 0) (#25)
    by sj on Sun Jan 29, 2012 at 02:42:12 AM EST
    It seems to work pretty well for text searches.  They don't have "search for images" or "search for videos" features.  I haven't really tried it for technical searches yet either, but I will soon.

    Occupy Oakland (none / 0) (#26)
    by Edger on Sun Jan 29, 2012 at 05:56:52 AM EST
    Watch democracy in action --> Occupy Oakland Jan 28, 2012 video

    My administration has been closely monitoring the situation... and I know that we will be learning more tomorrow when day breaks.

    As the situation continues to unfold, our first concern is preventing injury or loss of life. So I want to be very clear in calling upon the... authorities to refrain from any violence against peaceful protesters.

    The people... have rights that are universal. That includes the right to peaceful assembly and association, the right to free speech, and the ability to determine their own destiny.

    These are human rights. And the United States will stand up for them everywhere.

    Violence will not address the grievances of the... people. And suppressing ideas never succeeds in making them go away.

    --Barack Obama

    "In the end, if the people cannot trust their government to do the job for which it exists - to protect them and to promote their common welfare - all else is lost."

    Barack Obama: An Honest Government, A Hopeful Future

    Occupy Joakland (5.00 / 2) (#77)
    by The Addams Family on Sun Jan 29, 2012 at 12:59:20 PM EST
    you should find another example, Edger - OO at this point is a "fuck authority" circle jerk & has little or nothing to do with democracy in action

    "Passionate, organized hatred is the element missing in all that we do to try to change the world," said [Roxanne Dunbar] Ortiz, a retired professor from Cal State East Bay. "Now is the time to spread hate, hatred for the rich."

    oh, & i guess it's also the time to storm the YMCA &, while you're at it, destroy an environmental art exhibit made by children - way to speak for the 99 percent while contributing nothing but a tantrum to the civic dialogue & incurring nearly $2.5 million in costs to a virtually bankrupt city with critically understaffed municipal & emergency services

    OO is widely & rightly disdained among Oakland's vibrant, creative communities of multiethnic working & underemployed/unemployed citizens, incuding the unions, & it just didn't have to be this way


    Is it possible there's another side to this? (none / 0) (#83)
    by Anne on Sun Jan 29, 2012 at 02:03:50 PM EST
    There has been a bitingly angry tone in all of your comments about Occupy Oakland, and because I generally respect your opinion, I was somewhat willing to accept your take.

    But, then I read this, in Salon, and while it is, admittedly, just one person's perspective from having been on the scene, I thought it provided something your, well, they approach "rants," have not.

    Here's an excerpt, complete with some skepticism from the author himself:

    On Saturday, Occupy Oakland held their largest action since the Port Shutdown in December. It was "Move In Day," and the goal was to Occupy a vacant building. I wasn't really sure how I felt about this action, in part because the Occupiers had to keep the identity of the building secret. I wasn't necessarily against, but let's just say I was undecided.

    When I'd first started visiting the camp back in October, I hadn't been sure about it either, but after I'd been there several times, I saw something beautiful grow that I'd never expected. So, I've learned to give Occupy Oakland the benefit of the doubt.

    The day began with a rally at noon at Frank Ogawa/Oscar Grant Plaza. I asked many people if they were planning to enter the building. Almost everyone said they were uncertain, they would wait and see how things were going. There were about 500 people gathered.

    The march to the building left at 1 PM. Right away a man tried to drive his car through the march. He got mad, the protesters got mad and it did not look good. Some people stepped in, cleared the way, and after a while he drove off. The tension of that moment carried through most of the day and into the night, though there were moments of relief too.


    As I watched the larger group moving toward the building, it looked like a trap. Very soon after the protesters arrived at the Kaiser Center, the police fired tear gas into the crowd. Those of us standing two blocks away could taste it. Later, when I spoke to people who had been at the front, everyone said they Occupiers had done nothing to provoke the tear gas other than arriving at the building.


    When it was time to begin the second march, the crowd was probably back down to about 700. The group remained remarkably upbeat and determined. We arrived at the "alternate" building, and got herded away by the police. So people marched around, continually getting corralled and surrounded. I stayed behind, and the friend I was walking with noticed police coming at us from both directions. We decided to get out as it looked like a bad place to be. Our only exit was toward the police. On our way, an officer told us to turn around. I held out my homemade press pass and said we just wanted to leave. He told us we couldn't and said, "You choose to be here." He sounded pretty angry, and we were getting worried. We turned around, which basically meant we were heading right into the adjacent street where everyone was being corralled. But, the police veered towards that crowd, leaving enough of a gap for us to move past them and get out.

    There was a wire fence on one side of the Occupiers, and some of them pushed it down and everyone escaped across a vacant lot. They ended up in front of the YMCA on Broadway. I heard reports that some protesters entered the building and ran out the back. A large group in front of the Y got surrounded by police. Many were arrested.


    Whether the action of Occupy Oakland was right or wrong, the tactics and actions of the OPD I witnessed and heard of were pretty extreme, and they behaved irresponsibly toward the citizens who weren't involved in any of this. While walking along Lake Merritt to the Henry Kaiser Center, I saw two mothers pushing strollers with young children. They didn't look like Occupiers, so I stopped them and warned them there was tear gas ahead. They gave me an unbelieving look, and then glanced around, and realized I was right. They turned around, fairly disturbed. There should have been officers on the periphery to warn people what was going on.

    I'd suggest reading the entire piece, but I have this feeling you've already made up your mind, and one person's experience isn't going to change it.


    yeah, it did "look like a trap" (5.00 / 2) (#84)
    by The Addams Family on Sun Jan 29, 2012 at 02:57:59 PM EST
    that's because it was a trap

    basically the entire agenda of OO is now to actively provoke such traps & then protest the ensuing police riot

    & it was unconscionable of the OO organizers to provoke such an encounter yesterday, having promoted a "festive" parade atmosphere of "countercultural" fun in order to attract beards in the form of unwitting families with children, i.e., people who are decidedly unrepresentative of what OO has now become

    meanwhile, apart from its own choreographed clashes with the police, OO does virtually nothing to support & further the efforts of Oakland's real, homegrown activists who are working to end racial profiling & other bad behavior by Oakland's Finest (by the way, the OPD is so dysfunctional that it's now on the verge of a federal takeover)

    so thanks for the link, but i've already read that piece, & actually i do not need another person's experience to help me with my perceptions of OO

    "change my mind"? maybe you should open your eyes, Anne

    if you want to say i'm ranting, that's fine with me, & maybe you won't mind if i say that your uncritical take on Occupy Oakland is foolishly romantic, & that your tut-tuts to me are more than a little condescending, too, in that i am actually, you know, here, whereas you are in Maryland

    i put up bail for a number of people last fall

    i've attended the Oakland City Council meetings where people who do not live in Oakland, but who do claim to represent Oakland's "99 percent," have been remarkably & consistently candid about the fact that their agenda for OO is all about the circle jerk, & i have provided numerous links to their own words as evidence of that agenda

    you bet i'm angry - this bogus movement of privileged, selfish d0ucheb@gs is hurting my community & providing no benefit


    My "uncritical take?" That's what (none / 0) (#86)
    by Anne on Sun Jan 29, 2012 at 03:16:27 PM EST
    I get slammed with because I asked - asked, mind you - if it was possible - possible - there was another side to this?

    Whatever, Addams Family - thanks for whacking me in the face with a 2 x 4 and cutting off any interest I have in engaging you in a discussion.

    Message received: you own the Occupy Oakland issue.  Good to know.


    i did not interpret your comment (none / 0) (#89)
    by The Addams Family on Sun Jan 29, 2012 at 03:51:28 PM EST
    as inviting me to have a discussion - hard to discern such an invitation in a comment consisting of a loaded question and a long excerpt from Salon, the latter bookended by the suggestion that i am ranting & by the intimation that my mind is closed

    i share information here about Occupy Oakland because i think it's important in itself & because i want people here to know how the Occupy movement is being represented to & received by the "99 percent" in Oakland

    just consider what i say about OO to be an inconvenient truth


    No 2x4s here (none / 0) (#90)
    by BTAL on Sun Jan 29, 2012 at 04:11:24 PM EST
    Can't seen any justification for a blatant illegal intentional action by the OO group with its plan to break into and take over the building.

    From their own sites:


    occupyoakland.org Move in FAQs


    yup (none / 0) (#91)
    by The Addams Family on Sun Jan 29, 2012 at 04:35:56 PM EST
    & i generally agree w/almost nothing you say, BTAL, so i do understand why some here are reluctant to hear & confront what Occupy Oakland has become

    it's only because OO is so destructive that OO is not entirely irrelevant - i hope OO won't destroy the Occupy movement as a whole (& on that, maybe you & i will disagree . . . )


    Healthy disagreement and discussion (none / 0) (#92)
    by BTAL on Sun Jan 29, 2012 at 05:40:21 PM EST
    is good for the country, on that I hope we do agree.

    As to the overall Occupy "movements", I have no issue with public assembly, protest & petitioning the govt over grievances.  My issue with the Occupiers in most locations is their vagueness and refusal to specify and work constructively to any issues.  Instead they come across as hypocritical spoiled brats and are very happy to take things for nothing.  Where this really comes into focus is how the Occupiers are dealing with the homeless who come to their camps.  Many Occupiers are upset that those interlopers are expecting food and a place to sleep but won't contribute.

    I know some here and on the left take the position that the Occupiers just being there will change things - pure fantasy IMHO.  

    The Occupiers are their own worse enemies when it comes to really driving any real change.


    i can't disagree with you, BTAL (5.00 / 1) (#93)
    by The Addams Family on Sun Jan 29, 2012 at 06:03:51 PM EST
    Anglachel had a similar take the other day:

    I watch Occupy Wall Street recapitulate the failures of the movement that put The Precious [i.e., Barack Obama] in office, occupied as they are with transformation rather than achieving immediate, material goals that will persuade the majority of the 99% who only see dirty f*cking hippies begging for handouts while they labor on at their thankless jobs.

    but i don't agree with her (or with you) completely - i still think there is a fine line to walk with respect to what you call "vagueness"

    i understood Occupy Wall Street's initial &, imo, very justifed concerns about co-optation -  in those early days, demands for OWS to "take a stand" were basically code for OWS to kill itself

    i still see a place for strategic "vagueness" (& have been discussing this question closely with others who have been involved since the earliest days of Occupy Oakland), but i also think we are seeing some costs of that approach

    nevertheless, my major criticism of Occupy Oakland is precisely that it has allowed itself to become co-opted by an alliance of anarcho-elitists (i.e., Black Bloc & the people Anglachel calls "Whole Foods Nation"), to the point where OO is actively & stupidly alienating the unions & other potential allies who were so eager to join in at the beginning


    Too bad he couldn't have (none / 0) (#29)
    by jimakaPPJ on Sun Jan 29, 2012 at 08:46:04 AM EST
    had said this when the Iranian protesters were in the streets.

    You mean (5.00 / 2) (#31)
    by Edger on Sun Jan 29, 2012 at 08:52:43 AM EST
    when American protesters are in the streets... and when Iranian protesters were in the streets.

    No, this is what he said when Egyptian (5.00 / 2) (#34)
    by Anne on Sun Jan 29, 2012 at 09:10:32 AM EST
    protesters were in the streets, jim; references to Egypt and the Egyptian people were taken out of that excerpt, which you would have discovered had you followed the link.

    Here's what Obama actually said, in part:

    My administration has been closely monitoring the situation in Egypt, and I know that we will be learning more tomorrow when day breaks. As the situation continues to unfold, our first concern is preventing injury or loss of life. So I want to be very clear in calling upon the Egyptian authorities to refrain from any violence against peaceful protesters.

    The people of Egypt have rights that are universal. That includes the right to peaceful assembly and association, the right to free speech, and the ability to determine their own destiny. These are human rights. And the United States will stand up for them everywhere.


    Violence will not address the grievances of the Egyptian people. And suppressing ideas never succeeds in making them go away. What's needed right now are concrete steps that advance the rights of the Egyptian people, a meaningful dialogue between the government and its citizens and a path of political change that leads to a future of greater freedom and greater opportunity and justice for the Egyptian people.

    Proving once again that giving a good speech doesn't mean much if it all comes down to "do as I say, not as I do," or "actions speak louder than words."


    Watching Geithner talk to Fareed (none / 0) (#36)
    by Militarytracy on Sun Jan 29, 2012 at 09:27:45 AM EST
    He says they have a long way to go on the financial reform side....ummmmm Duh!

    Fareed asked him if it was his idea to go at the end of this term or if it was Obama's idea and members of the audience broke out in laughter.  I wish I knew why.

    Geithner seems acutely aware of how "disliked" he is these days.

    And Newt is being slaughtered on (none / 0) (#41)
    by Militarytracy on Sun Jan 29, 2012 at 10:35:52 AM EST
    Reliable sources.  That little rant that he had about the evil press on John King, how they offered ABC witnesses that would refute Marianne and ABC refused them and the rest of the press is ignoring it was completely made up.  Journalists have checked and double checked and ABC was offered NO WITNESSES that would have refuted what Marianne claimed during the interview.  It was all a lie.

    Tom Brokaw is upset about his news report on Newt being thrown out of the House by everyone being run as a commercial.  He feels it compromises him as a journalist.  A journalist panel on Reliable Sources discussed though how they all hate campaign commercials, how they make exaggerations and play danger music.  This was a news report, no exaggerations and no danger music and probably the cleanest political ad to ever hit television.

    That's a useful summary (none / 0) (#44)
    by Towanda on Sun Jan 29, 2012 at 10:40:39 AM EST
    and succinct on the points; thanks.  I ought to have watched this week, to have guessed that there would be discussion about an ad's use of a news clip, a discussion that interests me, but I missed it.  Now I have a grasp of points made, after all.

    A talking head who doesn't want to be quoted (none / 0) (#45)
    by jimakaPPJ on Sun Jan 29, 2012 at 10:41:15 AM EST
    A funny one from people who routinely quote others...and often out of context.

    He who is without sin, etc.


    So...the voters should just ignore (none / 0) (#50)
    by Militarytracy on Sun Jan 29, 2012 at 10:49:33 AM EST
    that Newt is lying his a$$ off right this minute, right to their faces Jim?  And they should ignore that he calculated lying his a$$ off in order to vilify the press?  Bless your heart

    Politicians often lie (none / 0) (#52)
    by jimakaPPJ on Sun Jan 29, 2012 at 11:01:34 AM EST
    So that is new???

    But my comment wasn't about what we all know. I was chuckling over Brokaw getting in a high dungeon over someone doing what he often does.



    Doesn't make any difference (none / 0) (#67)
    by jimakaPPJ on Sun Jan 29, 2012 at 11:44:54 AM EST
    what his job or his agenda is.

    All talking heads do it.

    Sorry if your background is so limited you don't understand.

    Tom Brokaw is a journalist (none / 0) (#68)
    by Militarytracy on Sun Jan 29, 2012 at 11:46:15 AM EST
    Always has been

    Brokaw is a talking head (none / 0) (#69)
    by jimakaPPJ on Sun Jan 29, 2012 at 11:47:28 AM EST
    always has been.

    so your position is that (none / 0) (#75)
    by observed on Sun Jan 29, 2012 at 12:26:50 PM EST
    journalists who are "talking heads" may be seen as favoring one candidate over another, without any negative repercussions???
    Even among "talking heads",
    there are those with some integrity,
    and then there are Chris Wallace and Brit Hume.

    My position is that all (none / 0) (#76)
    by jimakaPPJ on Sun Jan 29, 2012 at 12:37:51 PM EST
    "journalists" who appear on TV are talking heads and they all have an agenda that they understand helps them keep their jobs and the insane money they make.

    The difference between us is that I acknowledge that both sides do it.

    You don't.


    Jim that's absurd (none / 0) (#98)
    by Jeralyn on Sun Jan 29, 2012 at 09:06:20 PM EST
    to call Tom Brokaw, whose career was as an anchor, a talking head. You are not stating fact, but your biased opinion. If you want to say you have always thought of him that way, fine, but don't state a falsity as a fact. This is not open to debate, so don't bother responding. Just state your opinions as opinions.

    This thread got bogged down with insults (none / 0) (#99)
    by Jeralyn on Sun Jan 29, 2012 at 09:14:08 PM EST
    and personal spats. Those comments have been deleted. Attacks on other commenters are not allowed.