Tsk tsk

So I wasn’t the only person disgusted by Obama’s speech at Morehouse College. Ta-Nehisi Coates at the Atlantic:

I think the stature of the Obama family — the most visible black family in American history — is a great blow in the war against racism. I am filled with pride whenever I see them: there is simply no other way to say that.

[…] But I also think that some day historians will pore over his many speeches to black audiences. They will see a president who sought to hold black people accountable for their communities, but was disdainful of those who looked at him and sought the same. They will match his rhetoric of individual responsibility, with the aggression the administration showed to bail out the banks, and the timidity they showed in addressing a foreclosure crisis which devastated black America (again.)They will weigh the rhetoric against an administration whose efforts against housing segregation have been run of the mill. And they will match the talk of the importance of black fathers with the paradox of a president who smoked marijuana in his youth but continued a drug-war which daily wrecks the lives of black men and their families. In all of this, those historians will see a discomfiting pattern of convenient race-talk.

I think the president owes black people more than this. In the 2012 election, the black community voted at a higher rate than any other ethnic community in the country. Their vote went almost entirely to Barack Obama. They did this despite a concerted effort to keep them from voting, and they deserve more than a sermon. Perhaps they cannot practically receive targeted policy. But surely they have earned something more than targeted scorn.

H/t DUI lawyer Kush Arora.

The Big C finale

And they lived happily ever after:

..except for Cathy, who—as fated from the very first episode of The Big C—died from her terminal cancer in “The Finale,” but met up with Marlene and Thomas the Dog in the afterlife and, we assume, lived happily ever after. Even Cathy’s hapless husband and formerly dysfunctional son, based on our last sightings of them, seem destined to be okay in the wake of Cathy’s death, which is all she ever wanted, even when her relationships with Paul and Adam were at their worst.

Even though The Big C was quickly summarized as “woman diagnosed with terminal cancer goes on zany adventures,” as the clock wound down on the series, it became apparent that, while Cathy Jamison was the main attraction and her death was the featured event after four seasons of buildup, much like death in the real world, the stories that seemed to matter the most were those of the family and friends Cathy left behind. While it was satisfying to see Cathy close the book on her mortal life, get the all-clear from her not-actually-a-real-therapist therapist, and enter Heaven (or whatever) of her own free will, that was the point in which we the audience couldn’t really relate and the fantasy elements that The Big C has often dabbled in took over. That’s not to call the idea of an afterlife—no matter what your own personal beliefs describe it as—a “fantasy.”

It’s just to say that it’s not the sort of thing anyone has ever come back from with a concrete understanding of what it is and how it works. The Big C itself seemed to try to throw up its own sort of internal disclaimer with Cathy’s frank discussions with the imam, rabbi, and priest—grilling the three authorities that represented the Big 3 in world religions about how their respective creeds described the afterlife and then representing it as something completely removed from all three interpretations.

From a practical standpoint, it was the easiest way to avoid being slammed as having an “agenda.” But from a storytelling standpoint, it gracefully answered the question that Cathy spent much of her final months asking: What’s next?

Someone claiming to be Jamie Dimon arrested by Homeland Security

This was a great action that would have gotten a lot more publicity if not for the tornado:

After being arrested by Federal Protective Service yesterday, they were asked for their names. Among the names that the arrested gave were Jamie Dimon of JP Morgan Chase, Brian Moynihan of BOA, John Stumpf of Wells Fargo, Richard Davis of U.S. Bancorp and Lloyd B. Blankfein of Goldman Sachs. Many of those arrested were not veteran activists but ordinary people who feel they have been crushed by the foreclosure crisis. According to Amy Schur of Alliance of Californians for Community Empowerment, there are grandmothers among those arrested and at least four of them are over seventy.

The encampment in front of the Justice Department began yesterday afternoon and continues despite arrests. Twenty-seven protesters have been arrested. Two have been released. Among the other twenty-five, nineteen have given the names of bankers, that they would like Eric Holder to consider arresting – those “too big to jail”.

The encampment is not just the work of Occupy Wall Street. Ann Haines is with Occupy Minnesota. She was having trouble with her monthly payments, but was making them. She asked US Bank for assistance in getting some sort of modification and was advised that she needed to default in order to be eligible. Then came the sheriff’s sale. That is what turned her into an activist. She confronted Richard Davis at a US Bank shareholder’s meeting and is still occupying her home, but that did not stop her from camping in front of the Justice Department.

Amy Schur told me that probably the largest contingent is from the Home Defenders League, which predicted that

Dozens of struggling homeowners are prepared to risk arrest in non-violent civil disobedience or set up an ongoing occupation outside the Department of Justice until demands for Wall Street accountability and relief for their communities are addressed.

It’s your own damn fault!

Does this guy “>even make sense anymore? He gets all scientific about tornadoes, yet still crazy!

Televangelist Pat Robertson was asked today on the ‘700 Club’ about the tornadoes that have ravaged the Midwest and killed at least twelve people (video below).

He said that the storms weren’t an act of God, but instead turned it around on the victims, asking, “Why did you build houses where tornadoes were apt to happen?”

Robertson said the tornadoes may not have happened if enough victims had prayed: “If enough people were praying He would’ve intervened, you could pray, Jesus stilled the storm, you can still storms.”

Robertson made no mention of whether or not he prayed for the victims or against the tornadoes.

I’m sure you’re as shocked as I am

I remember when “progressives” were actually debating this during the obviously-coordinated evictions of Occupy camps across the country. “No, you can’t say that, there’s no proof!”

I thought to myself, “God, this is why people hate liberals: all this endless intellectual masturbation instead of just seeing the obvious.” But that’s just me!

The latest trove of documents obtained by the Partnership for Civil Justice Fund (PCJF) from the Department of Homeland Security’s Federal Protective Service adds new detail to the spying work of federal law enforcement agencies coordinating with local law enforcement and city governments to act against Occupy encampments.

“These documents make clear that the shutdown of Occupy was not based on the supposed ‘health and safety’ concerns that law enforcement used as a public rationale, but rather that the decisions were profoundly political including a prioritization of business interests’ demands over First Amendment rights,” stated attorney Mara Verheyden-Hilliard, Executive Director of the PCJF.

The documents show the intense political discussion and collaboration between the Justice Department, the DHS, local law enforcement and business interests who wanted Occupy Portland, Ore., to be shut down.

The documents also show the resources devoted by Boston “anti-terrorism” authorities focusing on Occupy Boston events during the fall of 2011.

These new documents have been posted for public review on the website of the PCJF.

Site Meter