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May 03, 2015

Overnight Open Thread (5/3/15) [tmi3rd]

Good evening once again, Morons and Moronettes. Maetenloch is on assignment for one more week, so you'll get me tonight, and tomorrow night, you'll get @CraigR3521, one of my good friends from Facebook and Twitter, and a guy whose links I routinely borrow from.

I'm a little less lighthearted this evening, but there'll still be some fun with this. This is necessarily going to be long- content rolled in for the 24 hours I was working on this- so be advised ahead of time.

More beneath the fold!


There's an INCREDIBLE level of visible-from-space stupidity on display with regards to what's happening in Baltimore, and the broader problem that has been displayed in Ferguson and in Baltimore, and to a lesser degree with respect to the George Zimmerman/Trayvon Martin situation.

This is a whole list of links that are relevant to the discussion... I hope you'll go give these a good hard read and come back to the thread. I'd like to thank Fallen Sparrow and Little Miss Attila (currently on blog hiatus), along with my FB Morons and Twitterverse Morons for their contributions.

First of all, I give you the execrable Jarvis DeBerry from the New Orleans Times-Picayune. The man is, in my estimation, a contemptible race-baiter and an embarrassment to journalism (low as it already is), but this appears to be a mainstream view of how things are in many communities across America.

Next, Nate Silver notes that The Most Diverse Cities Are Often The Most Segregated, but seems to have absolutely ZERO idea what these cities have in common.

The next piece, which Ace has talked about, is David Simon On Baltimore's Anguish, in which Simon blames Martin O'Malley for this happening, while simultaneously saying he'd still vote for him for president. As ridiculous a remark as that is, it lends a certain legitimacy to this piece.

We hit the way-back machine for Virginia Postrel's piece for the LA Times (when Virginia was editing Reason Magazine) in 1992 called The Real Story Goes Beyond Black and White : Races: The rioters were multiracial, and so were the victims. More polarized versions only feed bigotry. In many ways, the same circumstances were in place during the Rodney King riots.

Here's Fallen Sparrow's take on it... he lives in the greater Baltimore/DC area, and he's got a very even-handed take on it that spares nobody in terms of responsibility.

...and here's an unnamed buddy of mine weighing in from Baltimore...

So, I don't want to inflame all my Baltimore peeps, hence the PM. They had to go for max charges against these guys whether true or not. There won't be a city left if they're not found culpable in some major way. This city doesn't have much of a "thinking" class, and the mob mentality that is currently inhabiting the streets will turn from "peaceful" to "burn it all down, especially cops" in a breath. Black panther leader wants to bring 10,000ppl to the march tomorrow. The protesters didn't wait for facts to come out before reacting with riots and looting (neither did Obama or Hillary before they threw the police under the bus, thank you very much) which has only exacerbated/created, the situation. Obviously, there's an issue, and it's unfortunate that the Mayor, whether hand-cuffed or voluntarily, didn't prepare for the possibility of what happened Monday by supporting the police and equipping them with proactive orders and Guard members to bolster their ranks, as if Ferguson never happened. It's a scary semi-calm right now. Everyone wants blood, and they'll have it one way or another. Is that foreboding enough for ya?!

I dare not post video of liberation theology teachings, nor the Malcolm X documentary here, but allow me to weigh in on a couple of things here, piece by piece...

First of all, the DeBerry piece- he wants so much for this to be about race, but for my take, it's got nothing to do with race other than the convenience of trying to make it about race. What you're seeing in New Orleans, Baltimore, and many other major US cities is the absolute lowest form of class warfare- making sure a certain group of people who are going without keep going without, in order to maintain power over them. As such, the conflict is not an attempt at "white supremacy", as DeBerry puts it, but another example of the failures of federal Wars On Anything, domestically.

The Nate Silver piece- does he really not see what these cities all have in common? I just don't understand how a man of his intelligence (and he is a VERY smart man) can't make that connection.

The David Simon piece is perhaps the most revealing- and this is also what I'm increasingly led to believe is one of the two roots of the problem. The first, which Simon lays out in exquisite detail, is the failure of the War On Drugs. In conjunction with the equally ill-fated War On Poverty, I can't point to a single positive outcome from any of the above. Simon notes that it's given many police carte blanche to detain or arrest anyone they see fit, based on geographic location and gut feeling. He makes some scary points about which groups of police it's militarized, and I found myself nodding with much of what he said in terms of his situational analysis. Again, the O'Malley thing... oddly enough, by saying he'd still vote for the guy (which makes me sick to my stomach) lends him a nonpartisan legitimacy that I couldn't have.

The Postrel piece lays out the exact same situation, but twenty years ago, with a slightly different cast of characters. It's interesting to note that she points out the successful inner-city business owners that the '92 media steadfastly refused to highlight.

Little Miss Attila made a good point that I can't excerpt- she was in Los Angeles in 1992- that the rioting essentially exposed the line between the decent and the indecent in Los Angeles. I'm not sure the same lines are clear in Baltimore.

And finally, my buddy on the ground in Baltimore... these arrests really do look like crowd control. I have no idea how this is going to go, but a lot of the charges thrown at the officers look like Hail Marys at this point. I suspect we'll see a similar outcome to what we did in Ferguson.

So what do we have? I'll leave that for you to decide, but I don't think we have much of a debate on the idea that we've seen actions over the past fifty years that have served only to divide the nation further, and have given voice to the most malevolent, most base motivations in humanity. The cycle is perpetuated by the continuous election of demagogues as leaders, and the leadership in place has no idea what to do without jeopardizing their strands of power.

A Medium piece (thanks again, Little Miss Attila) lays out a pretty solid take on the War on Drugs.

And that's before we get to dealing with the liberation theologists who have hijacked institutions of higher learning. Rather than helping unite the various threads of American society, it's served only to drive wedges between us. On one hand, we're supposed to wear sackcloth and dine on ashes, but when people with real ideas and methods show up to try to cause actual change in the affected areas, they're run off as some sort of interloper. I'd like to know what the actual realistic expectations are, so that I can either afford them the consideration they're due, or denounce them as the revanchist horseshit that I tend to hear coming from many of the activists. As things go, we seem to be seeing the no-go zones developing in the United States a la the UK and France..

One thing is for certain: until the cottage grievance industries are done away with, this kind of thing won't go away. It spawns little assholes like this.

Okay, onto lighter stuff...

Councilman Goes To Bathroom, Forgets To Take Off Microphone

Things got real awkward during a council meeting in Georgetown, Texas, when an unidentified councilman excused himself to use the bathroom. Unfortunately, the man forgot to turn off his microphone, so everyone heard his trip to the lavatory as it was amplified throughout the meeting. It seems he also forgot to wash his hands.

Why Do So Many People Hate The Sound Of Hillary Clinton's Voice?

Shorter version, because tl;dr? Might have more to do with being unable to believe anything coming out of her mouth, including a, an, and the, perhaps?

I've Probably Posted This Before...

...but I don't care, because it's awesome. Jonathan Mover was Joe Satriani's drummer for a long time, and this was a sound supplement record (!) out of Modern Drummer magazine in 1989.


And a piece I drew on for much of my professional work...

As many of you know, I made my living as an opera singer for many years, and still perform professionally on a semi-regular basis. When I finally got to perform Figaro in Rossini's Il Barbiere Di Siviglia, I shamelessly used as much material as I could from my hero, Bugs Bunny.


Ladies and gentlemen, Jamie Foxx on your National Anthem!

(tmi3rd cringes)


In seeing this, this is about all I could come up with...


As someone who sings the Star-Spangled Banner and O Canada at dozens of events each year, this is a particular pet peeve of mine. I have a number of high-caliber singer friends in the Las Vegas area, all of whom would have been honored to sing it, and done it for free- which I'd just about guarantee you Jamie Foxx didn't.

Oh, and they'd have been done in a minute and ten seconds, as opposed to this marathon dump Foxx takes on the anthem. The man has a nice timbre to his voice, and appears to vaguely know the notes, but like many "name" artists I know, his entourage does nothing but fluff him so that he thinks he can do no wrong. This might have been something actually kind of special if he'd sat down with a vocal coach and worked on it.

That sucked, Mr. Foxx. Have the smarts as a successful artist to know the difference between soulful and crap.

To close...

I have to be honest with you, my soul hurts watching the country tear itself apart like this. Blame can be assigned on a bunch of different levels, but these are ultimately our cities in our country. Yes, our leadership has failed us on many levels, but people's livelihoods (and in some cases, their very lives) are being destroyed, and that is tragic for all of us. Why so? Because it probably has to get worse before it gets better.

That said, I cannot and will not lose faith in my nation, mainly because I know that the Moron Nation is out there. Lurkers and non-lurkers alike, the sun never sets on the Moron Nation, and anywhere in the world I've traveled, there's been a Moron there to greet me.

So, my friends, keep the faith... things are always darkest before the dawn.


I'm off to bed, as I've got to be on the road early Monday morning, but thanks for reading, my friends. Y'all play nice and don't do anything to get me or the blog in trouble, willya? God bless you, and God bless the United States of America.

-tmi3rd

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posted by Open Blogger at 11:47 PM

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