Monthly Archives: July 2013

Roseanne Barr Blames Detroit Bankruptcy on “Repiglicans”

Detroit RoseanneThe actress/comedian, Occupy Wall Street enthusiast and former Presidential candidate blames Republicans for the utter failure of the City of Detroit. 

Considering that Detroit has had a member of the Democrat party at the helm in every year since 1962, her rantings don’t make much sense, but such is living in the parallel universe of Roseanne.

Barr doesn’t mention the ‘leadership’ with its  profligate spending that took Detroit to fiscal insolvency in the first place, so, for your reading pleasure, I will. See the illustration near by. I’ve spiced up a Wikipedia page to call your attention to the last half century of ‘leadership’ in Detroit.

Detroit Mayors

Detroit’s finances were officially taken over by over by Gov. Rick Snyder, a Republican, last March. The decision to take Detroit to Chapter 9 bankruptcty was made last week by Snyder and the man who’s been charged with reorganizingDetroit emergency city manager the city finances, Kevyn Orr.  As Snyder put it, the City will probably run much more smoothly now,

Snyder, the man who authorized the filing, said city services should not immediately be affected. In fact, he suggested that the bankruptcy could actually improve city services in the future, because less of the city’s budget will have to be spent on “legacy costs” such as pensions, retiree health care and debt service. “I know many will see this as a low point for in the city’s history,” he said. “If anything, this gets us on the path towards improved services.”

Chapter 9 Bankruptcy includes these changes according to the Federal Bankruptcy Bankruptcy webpage:

The purpose of chapter 9 is to provide a financially-distressed municipality protection from its creditors while it develops and negotiates a plan for adjusting its debts. Reorganization of the debts of a municipality is typically accomplished either by extending debt maturities, reducing the amount of principal or interest, or refinancing the debt by obtaining a new loan.

Although similar to other chapters in some respects, chapter 9 is significantly different in that there is no provision in the law for liquidation of the assets of the municipality and distribution of the proceeds to creditors. 

Forty percent of the street lights don’t work, a former Mayor is headed to prison for corruption, the City has lost 2/3 of its population in Detroit neighborhoodthe last 60 years with 25% of that occurring just since 2000. Entire neighborhoods have been razed so as not to become an attractive nuisance to squatters and gangsters. Detroit can’t pay its bills or promises to pensioners. As a National Review columnist Kevin D. Williamson put it the other day, 

Detroit’s ruling class is a parasite that has outgrown its host.

Barr would appear to prefer profligacy, insolvency and Detroit’s  destitution  to giving the City a new start. She claims “Repiglicans” don’t want to save Detroit because they don’t want to pay taxes. 

A word to Roseanne: The people of Detroit paid their taxes and got ripped off. Why would we bail out a City riven by corruption without rooting it out? It’s the least they can do for what tax payers there are left. 

 

Scott St. Clair: Listening to an Adult in the Room Discuss Trayvon and George

Zimmerman BarkleyAbout Trayvon Martin and George Zimmerman, can we talk? Coming off the not-guilty verdict in the case, everybody claims to want an honest national conversation on race, so might as well throw in my two-cents, which can pretty much be summed up by saying I’m down with what Sir Charles said.

Former NBA star Charles Barkley, in an interview with CNBC’s Maria Bartiromo, nailed it:

In two and a half minutes, he cuts through the bull, gets to the heart of the matter and outs skullduggery and hidden agendas – refreshing to have an adult in the room.

In saying he agreed with the verdict, Barkley focused on the evidence, which is what trials are about, while acknowledging the tragedy of a young man’s death and the grief his parents feel.

He correctly called out as villains hucksters, both black and white, and the media:

“I don’t like when race gets out in the media because I don’t think the media has a pure heart, as I call it. There are very few people have a pure heart when it comes to race. Racism is wrong in any,  shape, form — a lot of black people are racist too. I think sometimes when people talk about racism, they say only white people are racist. There are a lot of black people who are racist. I don’t like when it gets out there in the media because I don’t think the media has clean hands.”

Plain-speaking truth. And he’s not alone in that – not by a long shot.

The 24/7/365 social-media info-bomb culture prizes sensation over good sense. Everybody points a finger, but few think orzimmerman trayvon hoodie listen.   I doubt whether an “honest conversation” will take place because there are painful and ugly truths that must be acknowledged. And the conversation will have to include holding certain members of the reverend clergy and others accountable.

Face it: racism exists. Abner Louima and Rodney King were racially targeted and attacked (by police, no less) even as O.J. got off scot-free.

As one observer noted, race hustlers gin up anger in the black community over allegations of racism against George Zimmerman not because there’s evidence of it – on the contrary, there absolutely is none (even Bill Cosby said so)— but because there’s evidence of it throughout history.

African-American Charles Ramsey put it another way after he rescued three girls from a decade-long kidnapping in Cleveland:

“Bro, I knew something is wrong when a little pretty white girl run into a black man’s arms – Something is wrong here”:

Why would he say that? And why did everybody laugh knowingly when he did?

Conservatives can be justifiably upset about being targeted by the IRS for their political beliefs, the exercise of their free-speech rights and feeling like they’ll never get an honest break, so maybe they can understand how blacks feel after 200 years of slavery, 100 years of Jim Crow and their sundry baggage.

Funny Obama Trayvon distractionA lot of folks on the right will hate to admit it, but President Obama was correct in saying the reaction of many black Americans stems from “a set of experiences and a history that doesn’t go away.”

Just don’t limit the conversation to black Americans. We all have experiences and history, and it’s a tragedy when any young person irrespective of race is killed. They deserve a shout out too.

He was right when he said the case and the verdict shouldn’t be used to “heighten divisions,” advice the president should instruct his own people to follow as well as follow himself.

It was cynical pandering for Attorney General Eric Holder to jump in with a promise to look for civil rights violations when the ink on the Zimmerman verdict wasn’t even dry. Ditto for the president to complain about stand-your-ground laws when (1) they weren’t at issue in the Zimmerman case, and (2) there’s strong evidence to suggest they benefit blacks more than whites.

An “honest conversation” must include hard talk on black-on-black gun crime, fatherless black families and the drug wars.Zimmerman reaction  But raise these issues and you get attacked by the soft bigotry of low expectations of white liberals who refuse to admit they exist and who have their own stereotypical biases toward black men.

It would have been a great for the president to mention that young men of all races are valuable, not just the Trayvon Martin’s of the world. And he could have acknowledged that sometimes it’s a black man who’s found “not guilty” in the shooting of a white teenager.

Yet it is legitimate to ask why Zimmerman carried a firearm while on a neighborhood watch patrol. But he was on patrol because there was a crime problem ineffectively addressed by the police, and the perps wore hoodies. Were you in his shoes at night potentially facing a criminal, wouldn’t you at least consider being armed? If you answer no, you’re not being honest.

Zimmerman cartoon hoodieI’m freaked out when I see a hoodie – on ANYONE. Who wears something designed to conceal unless they have something to conceal?

Then we have the self-aggrandizing reverends who flock to these cases like flies to carrion while encouraging you to have your VISA or Discover card ready.  Serial race-baiter Al Sharpton has a decades-long history of faking racially-based grievances – he has yet to pay damages and make the apology he was ordered to by a court in the infamous Tawana Brawley case. Almost since the day Martin was shot, he’s been braying at every opportunity and post-verdict he’s stoking racial-animosity fires across the country with a series of demonstrations demanding federal civil rights charges against Zimmerman that were, from early reports, sparsely attended.

At the same time, Jesse Jackson insulted every woman in America, white and black, when he complained that Zimmerman’s jury wasn’t made up of black MEN (maybe like his felon son?). That didn’t sound like he was interested in evidence or justice – only that the person who was shot was black, and the person who shot him wasn’t, ergo the non-black person would go to jail if, and apparently ONLY if, the jury was comprised of black men.

Adding insult to injury were Jackson’s calling Florida an “apartheid state” and demanding that the U.N. Human Rights zimmerman_wanted_posterCouncil, with such stalwart devotees of civil liberties as Venezuela and Pakistan, investigate the Martin killing.

There’s more: A local black politician blames Chicago police for the swath of murders of young black men. Some are giving a pass to blacks using language whites regard as racist while parsing their use of the “N” word. Rioters went on a Hollywood wilding as Martin’s death and the verdict as an excuse to loot .

It’s as if the whole thing was a clichéd made-for-TV movie, which is how much to most of the national media scripted it from the get go.  Never mind the facts, let’s make this about a pure and innocent boy set upon by a white racist with hatred in his heart then ignore whatever inconveniently contradicts that narrative.

While we’re at it if we’re NBC let’s doctor some audio to make the bad white guy, who isn’t white at all but Hispanic, look despicable and racist.

From the beginning, the story of Martin’s death and Zimmerman’s trial had the potential to exacerbate tensions and inflame passions. “That made it all the more incumbent on the media to be scrupulously truthful and responsible in their coverage. At this, they have spectacularly failed, with deplorable consequences,“ said one commentator at RealClearPolitics.com

It’s the same thinking that put alleged Boston Marathon terrorist and murderer Dzhokhar Tsarnaev on a Rolling Stone cover. Screw the truth and the impression we make – let’s just look cool to each other at cocktail parties.

The media is keeping it up by over-hyping the Sharpton demonstrations as something akin the 1963 march on Washington, D.C. that featured Martin Luther King, Jr’s “I have a dream” speech and saw 250,000 in attendance.

It’s doubtful, seriously doubtful, that the total number of people who attended Sharpton’s “National Day of Action” demonstrations in the 100 cities he claimed would have them approached five percent of the total of 1963’s single march.

Honest national conversation? Not with Al or Jesse hawking their personal agendas, an administration playing politics instead of being even handed and a refusal see how the other guy sees things.  In sum, until there’s more listen and think.

Scott St. Clair is a journalist, rhetorical pugilist, agent provocateur, aider and abbetor of Liberty Lovers and a former competitive Highland piper. He says what he thinks, means what he says and doesn’t suffer fools. He’s also a member of the Victoria Taft Blogforce. His opinions are entirely his own, and you shouldn’t expect them to mirror yours.

Report:Mult Co Chair Jeff Cogen Used His Kids to Babysit Mistresses’ Children, Discussed Marriage & Job Promotion

A picture of Sonia on Cogen's Flickr account.
A picture of Sonia on Cogen’s Flickr account.

KATU reports tonight that Multnomah County Chair Jeff Cogen used his kids to babysit his mistresses’ children and discussed marriage and a job promotion with her. 

From KATU:

Hundreds of emails between Multnomah County Chairman Jeff Cogen and Sonia Manhas paint a broader picture of their relationship – one sprinkled with flirtation, talks of private lunches and persistent smiley faces.

Here’ s the ookity part about his kids babysitting hers,

The two grabbed lunch often, went to a Rush concert together and Cogen’s kids babysat her children. 
“It’s weird,” Manhas wrote in October 2011 about the babysitting. “Yup,” he wrote back.

Then of course there’s the part about him positioning her, ahem, for a new job and 20% raise. 

…the emails show the two did talk about the promotion: Manhas forwarded the job opening to Cogen with the message: “FYI (with a smiley face emoticon).” He emailed back a smiley face. In September when Manhas got the job, Cogen emailed her: “Damn, that Sonia woman sounds great!”
Cogen has said he doesn’t believe he violated any county rules because Manhas isn’t his subordinate. 
Coincidentally, in one email sent Aug. 30, 2011, Manhas wrote in reference to a county project: “…I would rather work directly for you.”“Sounds good to me!,” Cogen wrote back.

Ew.

KATU reports going through 500 emails between the two. 500.  Including ones about marriage and her job promotion,

KATU found flirtatious emails and undertones of a deeper relationship — and a whole lot of smiley faces in the emails. The two also discussed the job promotion that Manhas ultimately received.
Among the signs of something deeper: In June 2011, Manhas alluded to a conversation the two had in the car.
She wrote: “Fun last night. I’m intrigued with what you shared on the drive back about marriage. Let me know if you are interested in picking up that conversation sometime. You can also tell me if this is totally an unwelcome inquiry.”
Cogen wrote back: “Hope you’ve crossed the border into vacation. Let’s get lunch again and we can continue our conversation.”

If I’m the head of the Children’s Fund (Cogen’s wife) I’m dumping the dude. Using your kids to babysit your girlfriend’s kids while you’re having an affair? Using your influence to get a job and raise –using taxpayer funds–for the woman you’re screwing?? 

Wake up, Portland. This is what corruption looks like.

 

President Obama on Zimmerman Case Makes Appeal to Fear. That “Click” of the Car Door Locks Means You’re a Racist. No, Men, It Means We Know Crime Stats.

Obama Trayvon MartinThe President of the United States of America came to the White House briefing today to personalize and emotionalize the Trayvon Martin killing and to tell reporters what it’s like to be a black man in America today.  

It was, in reality, an effort by the President to sell Eric Holder’s plan to bring civil rights charges against George Zimmerman by bringing race into a case in which race had no role.

The President used his speech to demonstrate the racism he claimed to have felt in his life,

And there are very few African-American men who haven’t had the experience of walking across the street and hearing the locks click on the doors of cars. That happens to me, at least before I was a senator. There are very few African-Americans who haven’t had the experience of getting on an elevator and a woman clutching her purse nervously and holding her breath until she had a chance to get off. That happens often.

Overturned trash cans, vandalism and #JusticeForTrayvon hashtags aside, the non-SEIU members of the country have noticed Zimmerman’s not-guilty verdict was the product of a trial in which the defense’s story made more sense than the one told by a swearing and prancing prosecutor. It also comes from a man who is the recipient of $1.4 billion of our  yearly tax payer dollars to keep him and his family in  the style to which they’ve now apparently become accustomed. 

The President was also trying to hip-check the Charles Barkleys of the world and to further racialize a case against George Zimmerman, the ‘white hispanic’ who has a mixed race family and who shot Trayvon Martin in the midst of the youth beating the crap out of him,

African-American men who haven’t had the experience of walking across the street and hearing the locks click on the doors of cars. That happens to me, at least before I was a senator. 

 

I’d like to tell the President that not all of us are like his “typical white Grandmother” who  imputed horrible motives to black men. I’d like to tell him that we’re not all like Jesse Jackson who claims that when he sees a mob of black youth he’s scared. And forget for a moment that the President assumes racism against him was turned off the moment he became a Senator due to the radar we white women possess. 

No, the President is wrong. Wrong. He assumes that because he hears the lock clicks and sees the purse clutching that it’s because he’s a black man. He believes these moves are because of his color.  And as a result of lumping us all into a the bin of racism he has now done a huge disservice to the safety of women. 

Let me be clear: IF he ever heard the clicks it was because he is an M-A-N. 

The overwhelming number of women are intimidated and victimized by men. Sitting at a traffic light or stop sign, women will check to see if they are safe, and if their locks are not deployed…click. We do this not because we don’t trust your color, we do this because we don’t fancy becoming a rape/assault/car-jacking victim.

We don’t know you and we don’t owe you an explanation, we just want to be safe. Now you’re trying to make us out as racists. It’s not about you, it’s not about your color, it’s about crime stats and not wanting to become a victim. 

As a woman who has been a radio talk host for years, black men often use this very example as evidence of racism. I’ve tried to disabuse black men of this specious claim for years. I’d love to simply send this story to the dead letter office. Better yet, why don’t we just round-file this poor excuse. I’m sure there room in the file right next to “long hot summer.”

President Obama Divides Instead of Unites on George Zimmerman Case

Obama Trayvon MartinThe President doubles down and has added to his “If I had a son he’d look like Trayvon Martin” and now says he could have been Trayvon Martin all those years ago. Really? Would he have come back and jumped a George Zimmerman in his neighborhood? Really?

The President took to the podium today to further personalize the George Zimmerman case to make an emotional attachment to himself instead of making the case for the rule of law. He inserted himself in the case to make a point about race–which was not an issue at trial and only the view held by race hucksters Al Sharpton and Jesse Jackson.

You know, when Trayvon Martin was first shot, I said that this could have been my son. Another way of saying that is Trayvon Martin could have been me 35 years ago. And when you think about why, in the African- American community at least, there’s a lot of pain around what happened here, I think it’s important to recognize that the African- American community is looking at this issue through a set of experiences and a history that — that doesn’t go away.

For the only-child-in-chief it’s always about him, never the country. Where he could have been uniter he once again has become a divider. Instead of being an attorney in the White House he used his position score political points. 

Where was the upbraiding of thugs and hoodlums for trashing cities across the country over a verdict that the President doesn’t elucidate? Instead, he further personalizes and emotionalizes a case that could have been explained, but he did not do that. Shame. 

Author Brad Thor Explains to Me His Offer to Buy George Zimmerman a New Gun: If They Can Take Zimmerman’s Gun Away, They Can Take Yours.

Author Brad Thor, an American Patriot and best selling book author, issued an unusual offer last night:

Brad Thor Offer to Zimmerman

After getting word that Florida officials were returning Zimmerman’s gun and other personal effects following his not guilty verdict in the Trayvon Martin killing, Eric Holder’s Department of Justice stepped in and froze the prosecutors’ ability to give back any of Zimmerman’s personal effects. He purportedly did it in anticipation of a civil rights lawsuit against Zimmerman. Holder’s own FBI has found no racial animus, required for a civil rights lawsuit, but the rule of law is a malleable thing in the Obama Administration. 

Steamed upon hearing it, Thor made his offer. I was able to talk with him this morning in a quick interview on Mark Larson’s Show at KCBQ San Diego. Listen here>>> Brad Thor – TAFT – 7.19.13

 Read Brad’s latest book Hidden Order by clicking on the image. It’s terrific.

Brad Thor Hidden Order

Boston Marathon Bomber’s Pretty Boy Pic on Rolling Stone Cover Riles Cop; Who Reveals “Real” Terrorist Pic

Boston Marathon Johar cop picA Massachusetts State Cop has been suspended for one day for releasing pictures of the night Boston Marathon Bomber Dzhokhar Tsarnaev was found after a city wide manhunt. The cop, upset that Rolling Stone was giving the terrorist celebrity treatment, released a few photos of Tsarnaev the night he was found. My favorite one is the featured photo. I like the laser guide. Shows off his pretty boy eyes, no? 

From CNN,

The pictures were taken by Massachusetts State Police Sgt. Sean Murphy and published online by Boston Magazine on Thursday afternoon. In a statement accompanying the photos, Murphy called the Rolling Stone cover “an insult” and “hurtful” to survivors of the April 15 bombings. This guy is evil,” Murphy said. “This is the real Boston bomber. Not someone fluffed and buffed for the cover of Rolling Stone magazine.”

The spokesman for Boston Magazine, where the pictures were first seen, says he thinks the cop was genuinely concerned about the victims of the bombings who would feel upset that a terrorist had gotten such celebrity treatment,

“Today’s dissemination to Boston Magazine of photographs of Boston Marathon bombing suspect Dzhokar Tsarnaev and police activity related to his capture was not authorized by the Massachusetts State Police,” spokesman David Procopio said in a statement issued Thursday night. “The department will not release the photographs to media outlets. The State Police will have no further comment on this matter tonight.”

Procopio told CNN late Thursday night that Murphy had been relieved of duty for one day and will have a status hearing to determine whether he will be on full duty, restricted duty or suspended during an internal police investigation.

Walgreens, CVS, 7/11 and Shop and Stop stores have refused to sell the Rolling Stone magazine featuring the terrorist.

Mult Co Scandal: Chair Jeff Cogen Beds Younger Woman, Gives Her Promotion on Your Dime.

A picture of Sonia on Cogen's Flickr account.
A picture of Sonia on Cogen’s Flickr account.

There’s more on the Jeff Cogen affair today with Willamette Week reporting that at the time he gave his mistress, Sonia Manhas, a promotion she was working for him and sleeping with him. 

Manhas is director of policy and planning for the county health department. She was promoted to that position in in September 2012, during the time she and Cogen were having the affair.The details of her promotion—which have not previously been reported—raise further questions about Cogen’s judgment.

Furthermore, WW reports there was no competition for the job for which she received a 20% increase. 

Cogen has a history of giving women he’s sleeping with jobs on the public dime. His wife reportedly is in charge of the Children’s Levy,

He became City Commissioner Dan Saltzman’s chief of staff in 2003, where he helped Saltzman launch the Portland Children’s Levy. (Pellegrino is director of the Children’s Levy fund.) 

County workers blew the whistle on Cogen in emails to the other Commissioners,

The affair became public on Monday when an anonymous tipster sent an email to all five county commissioners.

“Once again, I have been disappointed by the leadership at Multnomah County,” the email said. “Employees at Multnomah County have spotted Chair Cogen kissing Sonia Manhas in front of the Kenton Library and in a booth and at a bar in Portland along with a few other ‘sightings.’ Keep in mind that Sonia is in charge of ‘policy’ at the health department.  This information is being spread among County employees.  

“This behavior shows lack of values, principles and judgement,” the email continued. “You have a choice, you can ignore this or you can address it. But, it you choose to ignore this information, things will only get worse and morale will continue to decline.  What a shame if this information ever got leaked to the media……”

As for paramour Sonya Manhas? She’s gone dark, refusing interviews and taking her FB page down.

Cogen Sonya sonia

 

MoveOn.Commies Say They They’ve Been Hacked

Unknown attackers just launched the biggest assault on MoveOn’s site in our 15-year history, crippling our work for several hours.Chip in to help us fight back and keep MoveOn strong.


MoveOn’s site just weathered a massive online attack—the biggest in our 15 year history. We urgently need to beef up our defenses so we can keep elevating MoveOn members’ campaigns that speak truth to power and be ready for the next one. Will you chip in $5 today to help make sure MoveOn is strong in the days and months ahead?

Chip in $5

Dear MoveOn member,

Anonymous attackers just tried to shut down MoveOn’s site. 

Over the weekend, someone unleashed millions of artificial requests at our servers, preventing legitimate traffic from getting through, and temporarily shutting down our website. It’s what’s called a Denial of Service Attack, and this was the largest one we’ve ever faced. Over 15 years, through wars and heated elections, we’ve never seen anything like this.

It was the equivalent of someone firing a shot-gun through our window—clearly aimed to intimidate us and interrupt our work. Tens of of thousands of MoveOn members and other visitors were unable to organize on our site—sign petitions, plan events, run campaigns—for hours as our ace tech team raced to fight the attack and get the site back up.

We’re back up and running with new defense measure in place, but while this was the biggest attack we’ve faced, it won’t be the last. We must quickly beef up our defenses so MoveOn members can keep running campaigns that speak truth to power without fear.

Will you chip in $5 today to help make sure MoveOn is on and strong enough to withstand the next attack when it comes?

Yes, I’ll chip in to defend against anonymous attackers trying to shut MoveOn down.

While we were under attack, MoveOn staff couldn’t access some of our most essential tech tools. Over 45,000 MoveOn members were unable to reach their petition signers and campaign data. Over 300 groups met this weekend to kick off a massive anti-fracking campaign—and all those groups were briefly locked out of our systems.

Paralyzing MoveOn for a few hours was a big blow. Taking us out for a day would be a disaster. Our 8 million members are everywhere, fighting bravely to change this country, working on timely campaigns—they can’t wait for the tools and back-up we provide. We need to be ready for the next attack—and we will be.

With your support, we will:

  • Recover the costs of the extra tech time we already put in to recover from this most recent attack
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Will you help us protect ourselves from future malicious attacks and continue to invest in powerful tools that are changing the country?

Yes, I can chip in $5 to defend against anonymous attackers and keep vital campaigns going in the face of intimidation and sabotage.