Friday Open Thread

I've got a busy day at work, here's an open thread, all topics welcome.

Oscar Pistorius has been charged with premeditated murder in South Africa.

Maureen O'Connor, former mayor of San Diego and widow of the founder of Jack in the Box, gambled over a billion dollars and has been charged in federal court with money laundering. The feds have agreed to a deferred prosecution, very unusual in federal court. She allegedly transferred more than $2 million from her late husband's foundation to her personal account to pay gambling debts, which bankrupted the charity. The money laundering charge includes only one $449,000. transfer. If she pays the charity back the money she took, the case will be dropped and no guilty plea will be required.[More....]

Under an agreement with federal prosecutors, she will receive treatment for gambling addiction and has two years repay the money to the foundation, as well as taxes owed to the government. Prosecutors cited her health as the main reason for the deal.“Right now she is in a very poor financial state,” said Eugene Iredale, her lawyer. He said, “This is a woman who has been through real trauma.” Mr. Iredale said Ms. O’Connor had surgery for a brain tumor in 2011.

Jesse Jackson, Jr. is expected to plead guilty today to misuse of $750,000 in campaign funds. Politico reports his wife will plead guilty to a tax offense.

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    At last. (5.00 / 2) (#2)
    by lentinel on Fri Feb 15, 2013 at 03:41:10 PM EST
    A Democrat who sounds like one.

    Elizabeth Warren

    Elizabeth grilling bank regulators.  (Clip from Huffpo)

    A true breath of fresh air.
    True intelligence cutting through.

    That's awesome (5.00 / 3) (#5)
    by sj on Fri Feb 15, 2013 at 03:46:06 PM EST
    Did this make you smile?
    The financial regulators can blame, at least in part, Wall Street lobbyists (along with outgoing Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner and Senate Republicans) for their embarrassing turn at the hearing. Warren would have been on the panel herself representing the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, instead of a sitting senator, if her nomination to head the agency hadn't been thwarted in 2011.
    It did me

    Excellent. (none / 0) (#14)
    by sarcastic unnamed one on Fri Feb 15, 2013 at 04:47:28 PM EST
    I wonder if it will make any difference.

    I (5.00 / 1) (#15)
    by lentinel on Fri Feb 15, 2013 at 05:00:48 PM EST
    was thinking that it could make a difference.

    Someone speaking clearly, without a hidden agenda. A populist.

    If the sound is out there, it could have a ripple effect.
    I certainly hope so.

    It just occurred to me that once in awhile an individual can actually change things by the force of their honesty and integrity and commitment to people. Maybe Warren is one of them.


    Let's hope so. (5.00 / 1) (#17)
    by sarcastic unnamed one on Fri Feb 15, 2013 at 05:08:52 PM EST
    Sorry but I can't resist (none / 0) (#49)
    by jimakaPPJ on Sat Feb 16, 2013 at 12:02:28 PM EST
    Does that commitment, integrity and honesty start before or after the election?

    Us "native Americans" want to know.



    I disagree (5.00 / 4) (#52)
    by Peter G on Sat Feb 16, 2013 at 12:23:16 PM EST
    I am very sure that if you wanted to, you could resist.

    Keep stretching ... (none / 0) (#60)
    by Yman on Sat Feb 16, 2013 at 03:13:55 PM EST
    Not even close to your personal limits, but work with what ya got, Jim ...

    Did you watch the video (5.00 / 2) (#16)
    by NYShooter on Fri Feb 15, 2013 at 05:06:59 PM EST
    ........after the segment with Elizabeth Warren? I did, and couldn't stop laughing at those (this is not a pejorative, it's a fact) Idiots, from the Wall St. Journal. What was the subject they were all bent out of shape over? The TBTF banks, and the regulator's paralysis in prosecuting them for their numerous wrongdoing? Of course not! No, Elizabeth Warren's campaign fund ran into deficit after the campaign ended and she's now seeking donations from her supporters to pay off some debts.

    Wowee! That's never happened before! No politician ever finished a campaign in the red, I guess.  Oh, how they chortled and snickered. "She's supposed to be a banker, and a college professor, and she can't even keep her own books straight. And, she's supposed to supervise others? Oh, Ho, Ho, Ho.

    Morons! What disgraceful human mutations they are!

    financial reporters are like... (none / 0) (#21)
    by unitron on Fri Feb 15, 2013 at 05:26:11 PM EST
    ...sports reporters.

    They thing they're supposed to be cheerleaders for what they report about and on the side of those on whom they are reporting.

    The idea of objectively reporting what they observe no more occurs to them than the idea of not having an opinion on whether it's a good thing that the local high school's football team is going to play for the championship occurs to the guy with the loud sports coat and the louder on-air voice at your nearest television station.


    Good History of the Eagles doc on Showtime (5.00 / 1) (#25)
    by ruffian on Fri Feb 15, 2013 at 08:27:33 PM EST
    Makes sense that Glen Frey got his start with Bob Seger, both being from Detroit....love this stuff.

    Yeah (5.00 / 3) (#26)
    by rdandrea on Fri Feb 15, 2013 at 08:37:55 PM EST
    The money laundering charge includes only one $449,000. transfer. If she pays the charity back the money she took, the case will be dropped and no guilty plea will be required.

    And if she had robbed $20 from a 7-11?

    Or if she were Jesse Jackson, Jr. (none / 0) (#51)
    by oculus on Sat Feb 16, 2013 at 12:06:43 PM EST
    well, brain tumor? (none / 0) (#66)
    by womanwarrior on Sat Feb 16, 2013 at 08:52:03 PM EST
    I can only hope that this will result in more merciful sentences and diversion for our clients who did not take money, but were paid wages for not turning in their employers who were committing frauds.  Diversion is so much better than a felony conviction for the minimally culpable.  

    Okay ladies . . . (5.00 / 1) (#31)
    by nycstray on Fri Feb 15, 2013 at 09:51:08 PM EST
    Just saw a commercial for a hair color treatment you can buy and lighten the bottom half of your hair with . . . WTF?! Why would I want to treat my hair to look like I've been forever trying to grow out a dye/lightening job? Seriously, been there, done that. Finally learned to dye my hair to match my roots to grow it . . .

    This is known as "ombre" and is (5.00 / 1) (#32)
    by Anne on Fri Feb 15, 2013 at 09:55:29 PM EST
    very popular - though I agree it just looks like one is growing out a much lighter hair color.

    What's scary is, they've convinced women (none / 0) (#34)
    by nycstray on Fri Feb 15, 2013 at 10:48:19 PM EST
    to pay for this at salons etc. heck, I could lighten my hair in the summer sun (for free) and let it grow over the winter (for free), but it doesn't mean I want a root look to my ears.  Women are messing up the oldest part of their hair. Not a good idea, unless they have a short look in their future . . .

    Maybe you can teach men. (none / 0) (#42)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Sat Feb 16, 2013 at 01:25:20 AM EST
    We have a state representative who dyes his hair, and it's way too dark for his complexion. And when he wore his "Members Only" jacket to the judiciary committee hearing today, he looked absolutely ridiculous for a 65-year-old.

    As for me, I embrace the grey.


    Actually, I could teach men (and women!) (none / 0) (#43)
    by nycstray on Sat Feb 16, 2013 at 02:20:31 AM EST
    on the value of correctly coloring your hair :) John Travolta, I'm looking at you . . .  shoe polish . . . . and I have a whole other laundry list of bad hair . . .  :) Bad habit from my fashion days . .  .

    I will say I'm genetically blessed on the grey scale, so natural is working for me, and even if it wasn't, I'm over the upkeep of the hair color. So not worth it. Now the Members Only Jackets, those are too die for, as in a dead social life, lol!~


    They're still around?!? (none / 0) (#45)
    by Yman on Sat Feb 16, 2013 at 07:27:09 AM EST
    Or is this a "vintage" jacket from the 80's?  Still remember mine circa 1983...

    Chintz, baby (none / 0) (#53)
    by Dadler on Sat Feb 16, 2013 at 12:27:42 PM EST
    That stuff never goes outta style.

    I think it's gotta be vintage. (none / 0) (#54)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Sat Feb 16, 2013 at 12:41:43 PM EST
    If only he'd have also worn his bellbottom "Miller's Outpost"-style vintage jeans and cowboy boots, both of which he has in his collection, he'd have clinched the "Caricature of the Month" award. Sad to say, he's a Democrat.

    There's something to be said for the concept of aging gracefully ...


    Representing female empowerment? (5.00 / 1) (#36)
    by nycstray on Fri Feb 15, 2013 at 11:05:08 PM EST

    {head desk}

    Oy (5.00 / 3) (#58)
    by Zorba on Sat Feb 16, 2013 at 02:55:14 PM EST
    And furthermore, Oy vey!

    On Feb. 4, Jonas-Boggioni and husband Guido Boggioni, 66, were driving home to Plano after a trip to Columbus to attend the funeral of his mother, Eleanor, 92.

    They were in the westbound lanes of I-40, a few miles east of Memphis, when a black police SUV with flashing lights pulled them over, Jonas-Boggioni said.A second black SUV soon pulled up behind the first one.

    "Knowing I wasn't speeding, I couldn't imagine why," she said.

    Two officers approached, one on each side of the car.

    "They were very serious," she said. "They had the body armor and the guns."

    Because the couple's two schnauzers were barking furiously, one of the officers had Jonas-Boggioni exit the car so he could hear her better.

    "What are you doing with a marijuana sticker on your bumper?" he asked her.

    She explained that it is actually a Buckeye leaf decal, just like the ones that Ohio State players are given to put on their helmets to mark good plays.

    "He looked at me like I was speaking a foreign language," she said.

    Body armor to approach an elderly couple with a Buckeye leaf bumper sticker.  And never mind that, as far as I know, it's not even illegal to display a marijuana leaf bumper sticker on your car.
    Well, apparently, any kind of leaf bumper sticker seems to freak out the police in Tennessee.
    Hey, Tennessee cops:  Educate yourselves.  Read the First Amendment to the Constitution of the United States of America.

    Emory University president: a confederate scourge (5.00 / 1) (#63)
    by shoephone on Sat Feb 16, 2013 at 04:53:32 PM EST
    In his winter quarter "Letter From the President," James Wagner touts the counting of slaves as 3/5 a person as an example of noble compromise:

    One instance of constitutional compromise was the agreement to count three-fifths of the slave population for purposes of state representation in Congress. Southern delegates wanted to count the whole slave population, which would have given the South greater influence over national policy. Northern delegates argued that slaves should not be counted at all, because they had no vote. As the price for achieving the ultimate aim of the Constitution--"to form a more perfect union"--the two sides compromised on this immediate issue of how to count slaves in the new nation. Pragmatic half-victories kept in view the higher aspiration of drawing the country more closely together.

    Some might suggest that the constitutional compromise reached for the lowest common denominator--for the barest minimum value on which both sides could agree. I rather think something different happened. Both sides found a way to temper ideology and continue working toward the highest aspiration they both shared--the aspiration to form a more perfect union. They set their sights higher, not lower, in order to identify their common goal and keep moving toward it.

    Of course, it's almost comical to present the northerners as the bad guy in this scenario. The north was right, considering that none of the slaves had the right to vote. The southerners wanted slaves counted so that they could increase their population numbers for purposes of political power--gaining more congressional representation in order to continue the southern policy of gross inhumanity for as loooonnnngg as posssible.

    Get off your high horse (5.00 / 1) (#64)
    by SuzieTampa on Sat Feb 16, 2013 at 06:53:35 PM EST
    Do you think women, children and others should not have been counted either since they could not vote?

    The North was thoroughly implicated in the slave trade, as this article in In These Times notes. For the most part, the North gave up slavery when it was no longer economically useful. But it still benefitted greatly from the raw materials gotten cheaply from the South.

    The North might have pressured the South to end slavery if the North had stopped buying goods derived from slave labor. Instead, the economy of the South was ruined in the Civil War, thus ensuring a continuing supply of cheap goods from newly freed slaves and whites who had never owned slaves.


    It's all over... (none / 0) (#1)
    by desertswine on Fri Feb 15, 2013 at 03:28:31 PM EST
    Space aliens are throwing rocks at us.  Hey!! Cut it out.

    I heard about that on the radio (5.00 / 1) (#3)
    by sj on Fri Feb 15, 2013 at 03:41:14 PM EST
    this morning.  Wow, right?

    Amazing. (5.00 / 1) (#4)
    by lentinel on Fri Feb 15, 2013 at 03:45:44 PM EST
    What occurred to me while watching the video is not only the incredible spectacle of this visitor from outer space, but also the incredible similarity of day to day life between people in Siberia and people in any city in the USA.

    The highway could have been the Cross Bronx Expressway in NYC.

    There must be a way that we can unite.


    There's video? (none / 0) (#7)
    by desertswine on Fri Feb 15, 2013 at 04:06:18 PM EST
    I've got no sound (5.00 / 1) (#8)
    by sj on Fri Feb 15, 2013 at 04:19:29 PM EST
    but this is the best one I've seen so far.

    The talking is, of course, (5.00 / 2) (#9)
    by Zorba on Fri Feb 15, 2013 at 04:26:50 PM EST
    in Russian.  But the sound of the explosions, and the subsequent sound of breaking glass when the windows blew out, are pretty scary.  I don't know what the people thought was happening, but I would have been terrified, as I'm sure they were.

    Wow in one of those videos (5.00 / 1) (#10)
    by desertswine on Fri Feb 15, 2013 at 04:29:19 PM EST
    it looks like its going to come thru the window!
    Thanks for posting that. And klaatu barada nicto.

    My (5.00 / 2) (#18)
    by lentinel on Fri Feb 15, 2013 at 05:10:56 PM EST
    mind went to "The Day The Earth Stood Still" also.

    I was thinking that perhaps we need Gort to get everyone in line and stop all this war and nonsense.

    It certainly makes me aware that just one hit from an errant asteroid can end everything. Not for the Earth. Just for the current version of most human and animal life.

    It does make me think that all this squabbling between different nations is just so incredibly stupid and wasteful and unnecessary. Peoples of the Earth have so much in common with each other. It just seems more and more apparent to me that the perceived divisions are a fabrication of a deranged segment of humanity.


    And, yet (none / 0) (#19)
    by NYShooter on Fri Feb 15, 2013 at 05:20:00 PM EST
    next to sex, it's the most enduring characteristic mankind has bequeathed its offspring.

    Just think, if we spent a fraction of the money we spend on war material and preparation on ways to reach a lasting peace. I don't know, aren't there any geniuses out there who could make a case that peace is more profitable than war?

    I guess not.


    I (none / 0) (#23)
    by lentinel on Fri Feb 15, 2013 at 06:29:19 PM EST
    know that this is a vast oversimplification, but reading what you wrote made me think that if everyone in a position to start wars had access to some great pot, what used to be called "dynamite", they would find that they didn't have time for war. Something good was on TV, there was some great music happening, there is sex, there is food...

    Later for war, man.


    Don't know why, but (5.00 / 2) (#27)
    by NYShooter on Fri Feb 15, 2013 at 08:44:33 PM EST
    I just got a big smile on my face. Memories went back to late 60's, just got back from SE Asia. A buddy & I ran right smack into a bunch of nurses who had rented a house for the Summer in Chico, Calif. We all spent the nights outdoors, in a meadow, under a big (Oak? Maple? Dunno) Of course, a fire nightly, and then, the stories......like the one that seeded this here thread, war & peace.


    sex, drugs, 'n rock 'n roll.

    and, you're smiling right now too.


    Summer in Chico (none / 0) (#29)
    by cpresley on Fri Feb 15, 2013 at 09:39:49 PM EST
    If you were in Chico it was most likely an Oak. Summer in Chico is really hot. We have a place that is about 30 mins from Chico but we're up in the Mountains,thus cooler. When we are only 100, Chico is about 115. 15 degrees makes a big difference, even if it's dry heat.:)

    I was going to say the same, oak tree :) (none / 0) (#30)
    by nycstray on Fri Feb 15, 2013 at 09:48:37 PM EST
    I didn't realize it got that hot in Chico. That's enough to keep me away . . .  dry heat be d@mned ;)

    I'm spoiled down in the south Napa Valley, weather to live for.


    Yes Chico gets that hot. (none / 0) (#33)
    by cpresley on Fri Feb 15, 2013 at 10:22:06 PM EST
    Our normal home is in the Santa Cruz Mt. so I know what the fog in the summer does for temps. We hit 85 and we're dying. The central valley gets real hot. All you need to do is go over the Altamount Pass and your temps rise about 20 degrees.

    I remember the SC Mts :) (none / 0) (#41)
    by nycstray on Sat Feb 16, 2013 at 01:17:59 AM EST
    Yeah, fog is a wonderful thing. 85 here and I'm like WTF?! But I also know it won't last but a moment and have no regrets not having AC :) Old house with high ceilings and ceiling fans along with great cross breezes, pretty much free AC when the heat pays a visit. I live in an old ship builders 'hood, so the houses are very efficient.

    The place we were camped at (none / 0) (#39)
    by NYShooter on Sat Feb 16, 2013 at 12:48:23 AM EST
    was near Chico, and I think it was some kind of State Park. Nothing fancy, to be sure, and not at all crowded which made it all the more appealing. There was a lake close by although we didn't partake.

    As to the weather, every stereotype one ever hears, and/or heard, is true. Dry hot as He!! days, and wonderful, star-filled, cool, dry nights.


    If it was near Chico (none / 0) (#67)
    by cpresley on Sat Feb 16, 2013 at 09:18:27 PM EST
    I was more than likely Lake Orovile.

    Wow. Wait until you can watch with sound. (5.00 / 1) (#13)
    by sarcastic unnamed one on Fri Feb 15, 2013 at 04:46:02 PM EST
    I noticed that after the meteor exploded (5.00 / 2) (#24)
    by Peter G on Fri Feb 15, 2013 at 07:38:25 PM EST
    there were no dinosaurs in that part of Russia anymore.  

    What are the cavemen riding now (none / 0) (#28)
    by MO Blue on Fri Feb 15, 2013 at 09:31:58 PM EST
    that they are gone? ;o)

    I heard that the "bow wave" of pressure (none / 0) (#11)
    by sarcastic unnamed one on Fri Feb 15, 2013 at 04:43:40 PM EST
    from the meteor hitting our atmosphere is what caused the majority of the damage.

    Here's (5.00 / 1) (#22)
    by lentinel on Fri Feb 15, 2013 at 05:42:16 PM EST
    a sobering thought;

    Vladimir Chuprov of Greenpeace Russia noted that the meteor struck only 100 kilometers (60 miles) from the Mayak nuclear storage and disposal facility, which holds dozens of tons of weapons-grade plutonium.



    Maureen O'Connor (none / 0) (#6)
    by koshembos on Fri Feb 15, 2013 at 04:00:42 PM EST
    Maureen O'Connor was the last Democratic mayor of San Diego (1980s) before Bob Filner was elected in 2112. Sad!

    Spending more time with his family. (none / 0) (#12)
    by KeysDan on Fri Feb 15, 2013 at 04:45:19 PM EST
    Vatican spokesman, Father Federico Lombardi, indicated at a press conference Feb 14, that Pope Benedict  "will be accompanied to Castel Gandolfo and also to the convent in the Vatican by Archbishop George Ganswein and the Memores Domini (celibate priests and laymen) because this is the fundamental nuclear group of the pontifical family."

    The former Pope will be tended to by the same nuns that look after him now. Since 1996  Georg Ganswein, the 56-year old German cleric has been a personal aide to Cardinal Ratzinger and continued on after Ratzinger was elected Pope.   Msgr. Ganswein has been described as the "George Clooney of the Vatican" by the Italian press and appeared on the cover of Italian Vanity Fair. In 2007, there was some discussion of naming Ganswein Archbishop of Munich, but the Pope decided to keep him closer.

    Benedict elevated Ganswein to Archbishop in January 2013 and promoted him to Prefect of the Papal Household Prefecture at the same time.   The timely elevation of Ganswein as well as the renovation over the past few months of the Convent to house the ex-Pope and his nuclear family, are now seen by some observers as missed clues  as to his abdication.  

    More action on the way out the Papal door. (none / 0) (#48)
    by KeysDan on Sat Feb 16, 2013 at 11:18:01 AM EST
    According to the NYT,  A Committee of Cardinals that used a Frankfurt-based headhunter recommended, and the Pope appointed,  Ernst von Freyberg, a German aristocrat, industrialist  and organizer of pilgrimages to Lourdes,  head of the secretive Vatican Bank.  Herr von Freyberg replaces  Ettore Tedeschi, who was ousted last May for not being "up to the job".  Signor Tedeschi contended that he had been thwarted in his transparency efforts.

     Pope Benedict has been weighed down by scandals on various subjects, including finances. In September 2010, Italian authorities seized $30 million from accounts used by the Vatican Bank as part of an investigation tied to money laundering.  In January, the Bank of Italy refused authorization for Deutsche Bank's Italian unit to continue to provide credit-card services within the Vatican walls. After more than a month of cash-only, the Vatican reached a deal last week to restore credit-card use inside the Vatican.

    The Pope's appointment of Herr von Freyberg, a Knight of Malta, is "the last stroke of a power struggle," according to Ignazio Ingrao, a Vatican expert for 'Panorama'--referring to the struggle with Vatican bankers who are members of the Knights of Columbus.

    Now, as Bill Maher says, all of this is stuff is uninteresting to him, because the Catholic Church is going the way of Blockbuster and the Moose Lodge.  But, it is important in my view to keep track of their goings on as long as they are a political organization.  And, for those who hope that the new Pope will be a breath of fresh air, don't bother to open the window. The old Pope has set himself and the curia up for the long haul.


    Data released in RI (5.00 / 2) (#56)
    by MO Blue on Sat Feb 16, 2013 at 01:09:02 PM EST
    PROVIDENCE, R.I. -- Documents released Friday shed light on the inner workings of a secretive and now-disgraced Roman Catholic order called the Legion of Christ, including new details on how the organization solicited money from an elderly widow, eventually persuading her to bequeath it $60 million.

    The documents, previously sealed in a lawsuit brought before Superior Court in Rhode Island, include thousands of pages of testimony from high-ranking leaders at the Legion, its members and relatives of wealthy widow Gabrielle Mee. They are the first-ever depositions of high-ranking Legion officials and include how the order's former second-in-command learned in 2006 that its founder had fathered a child.
    The Legion scandal is significant because it shows how the Holy See willfully ignored credible allegations of abuse against Maciel for decades while holding him up as a model of sainthood for the faithful because he brought in money and vocations to the priesthood. The scandal, which has tarnished the legacy of Pope John Paul II, is cited as an especially egregious example of how the Vatican ignored decades of reports about sexually abusive priests because church leaders put the interests of the institution above those of the victims. link

    The documentary, (none / 0) (#61)
    by KeysDan on Sat Feb 16, 2013 at 03:22:42 PM EST
    "Mea Maxima Culpa, Silence in the House of God"  (HBO), covers the Father Macial scandal and his monetary insinuation and protection of his heinous deeds by Pope John Paul II and Cardinal Sodano, Secretary of State.  It is heroic and ironic that those who could neither speak nor hear---the boys of St. Francis School for the Deaf--broke the silence.  

    I thought this op-ed from the NYT Feb 11 (5.00 / 2) (#59)
    by DFLer on Sat Feb 16, 2013 at 03:06:33 PM EST
    nailed many issues, especially this part about the closing of neighborhood churches:

    Farewell to an Uninspiring Pope

    I have watched the wealth of the Catholic Church turned into a subsidy for wrongdoing and a prop for the continuing campaign against women's rights and homosexuality. Neighborhood churches, built with the hard-earned money of working-class people, are being sold off. The sacrifices that were made to build these churches were significant and local. The decision to close them has been made antiseptically, by remote control. The men who make these decisions are at a remove, very much involved in protecting their power and comfort.

    An excellent (none / 0) (#62)
    by Zorba on Sat Feb 16, 2013 at 03:29:39 PM EST
    opinion piece, DFLer.

    NYT re selection of next Pope. (none / 0) (#50)
    by oculus on Sat Feb 16, 2013 at 12:05:47 PM EST
    Did not know Cardinals aged 80 and above cannot vote.



    People spend a lot of money (none / 0) (#57)
    by fishcamp on Sat Feb 16, 2013 at 02:34:24 PM EST
    in the Vatican.  They have rosaries, bibles, statues, and photos.  You can't take pictures in the Vatican because the flash may ruin the murals, they say.  But really they want to sell you slides and prints, which are very good.  Then there's the Post Office down in Vatican City.  They have more stuff.  It's right around the corner from the gemstones of the Vatican.  They are truly beautiful.  Rome is expensive.

    Will also need help (none / 0) (#68)
    by jbindc on Mon Feb 18, 2013 at 07:25:02 AM EST
    Pistorious: The Blade Gunner (none / 0) (#20)
    by sarcastic unnamed one on Fri Feb 15, 2013 at 05:21:07 PM EST

    Robert Zimmerman, George's brother, was (none / 0) (#35)
    by ruffian on Fri Feb 15, 2013 at 10:53:57 PM EST
    on Real Time as Bill Maher's guest at the beginning, not on the panel. He talked mostly about their family background. I don't want to quote anything he said about the case from memory and get it wrong, but nothing stood out as new. Maher brought up the point I have made about if their was no gun involved it is likely no one would have been dead. Zimmerman kind of conceded that point but said a couple of times that Sanford is such a high crime area that George felt like he needed a gun. I would call that characterization of Sanford a bit of an exaggeration, and I bet there is some backlash from the town....if I'm not the only one in the area that watches this show.

    A pissed off jury pool will (none / 0) (#38)
    by oculus on Sat Feb 16, 2013 at 12:40:43 AM EST
    not be good for defendant. Why doesn't defendant's attorney give these well-meaning folks the hook?

    My thought (none / 0) (#46)
    by DebFrmHell on Sat Feb 16, 2013 at 09:26:18 AM EST
    was that I was glad to see he effort to get away from the SYG since the Defense is not claiming that.  The duty to retreat is HUGE and it is one of the things that makes a SYG case.  Media continues to claim SYG because it is a "hot button" for the masses.  Especially, with all the gun control efforts.  

    Zimmerman, being on his back, could not retreat unless he dug a hole. His is a self-defense case.


    LOL Maher just nominated Hillary as the new pope (none / 0) (#37)
    by ruffian on Fri Feb 15, 2013 at 11:09:10 PM EST

    Yes, and in other breaking news, (none / 0) (#47)
    by KeysDan on Sat Feb 16, 2013 at 10:22:04 AM EST
    Maher outed the Pope.

    Mahalo, Jeralyn, for ... (none / 0) (#40)
    by Donald from Hawaii on Sat Feb 16, 2013 at 01:14:01 AM EST
    ... responding to my earlier query about Maureen O'Connor, and explaining what the federal court did in deferring prosecution.

    In Hawaii state court, it's called a DAG plea, the acronym for "Deferred Acceptance of Guilt." It's offered occasionally to first-time misdemeanor offenders, meaning that if they comply with the court's directives and don't get into further legal trouble, their slate's wiped clean after a couple years. I've just never heard of it offered in federal court until now.

    Okay, we're off to Hilo. Thank you again. I learned something new today.


    Facebook: 429 Million tax refund on 1.1 Billion (none / 0) (#44)
    by Wile ECoyote on Sat Feb 16, 2013 at 05:57:51 AM EST

    Facebook's income tax refunds stem from the company's use of a single tax break, that is the tax deductibility of executive stock options. That tax break reduced Facebook's federal and state income taxes by $1,033 million in 2012, including refunds of earlier years' taxes of $451 million.

    It must be noted they are not the only company that does the samething.

    In related news: Pelosi: Congressional pay cut undermines dignity of the job

    Yes, we must not undermine the dignity of (5.00 / 1) (#55)
    by ruffian on Sat Feb 16, 2013 at 12:43:31 PM EST
    the US Congress. I don't know how she can keep a straight face with aline like that.

    C'mon now, have a little sympathy (none / 0) (#65)
    by NYShooter on Sat Feb 16, 2013 at 08:19:43 PM EST
    Up until last year Congress was immune from the very same laws that have put many "ordinary" citizens behind bars, namely, insider trading laws. Yes, our very same, Nancy Pelosi, was known as the poster child of trading stocks that would be greatly affected by the actions of the committees she headed, or attended.

    You don't become a millionaire by depositing your paycheck into a .5% savings account.