This is not The Onion. In New London, Conn., you apparently can be too smart to be a cop:
A man whose bid to become a police officer was rejected after he scored too high on an intelligence test has lost an appeal in his federal lawsuit against the city.
The 2nd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in New York upheld a lower court’s decision that the city did not discriminate against Robert Jordan because the same standards were applied to everyone who took the test.
Jordan, a 49-year-old college graduate, took the exam in 1996 and scored 33 points, the equivalent of an IQ of 125. But New London police interviewed only candidates who scored 20 to 27, on the theory that those who scored too high could get bored with police work and leave soon after undergoing costly training.
The average score nationally for police officers is 21 to 22, the equivalent of an IQ of 104, or just a little above average.
I believe this is fairly revealing. I would also argue it may not be a matter of being bored with police work. More intelligent officers might question superiors, and orders they believe in violation of the US Constitution and their training. It appears the ideal cop for New London, Conn. is a person who is intelligent enough to absorb training, but not too smart. It’s Goldilocks - this one was too dumb, this one was too smart, but this one is just right.
In his last official act of business in 2011, President Barack Obama signed the National Defense Authorization Act from his vacation rental in Kailua, Hawaii. In a statement, the president said he did so with reservations about key provisions in the law — including a controversial component that would allow the military to indefinitely detain terror suspects, including American citizens arrested in the United States, without charge. Recently two retired four-star Marine generals called on the president to veto the bill in a New York Times op-ed, deeming it “misguided and unnecessary.”
"Due process would be a thing of the past," wrote Gens Charles C. Krulak and Joseph P. Hoar. "Current law empowers the military to detain people caught on the battlefield, but this provision would expand the battlefield to include the United States – and hand Osama bin Laden an unearned victory long after his well-earned demise."
The president defended his action, writing that he signed the act, “chiefly because it authorizes funding for the defense of the United States and its interests abroad, crucial services for service members and their families, and vital national security programs that must be renewed.”
I don’t care what he says - the bill allows for indefinite detention. If he saw no problem with it, he would not have signed it on a Saturday, on the last day of the year. This is a horrific bill. The U.S. has been detaining foreign citizens for years without trial. We’re moving towards American citizens. When are we going to wake up and realize the human and civil rights abuses our country is committing and has the potential to commit under this bill.
Obama may not think it will happen under his administration and says as much. How are we to believe he has the backbone to stop it?
Reductive description of groups of people from a Republican? Say, it is not so! Next thing you know, you are going to tell me that they describe a diverse, multicultural, multinational people belonging to a religion as “terrorists.”
If you’re referring to Prof. Stephen Bloom’s description, I’m pretty sure he’s not a Republican. If you’re referring to Huntsman quote, that might be more accurate, but Huntsman is probably the least likely to use a reductive description on the regular.
He’s not alone. In Observations From 20 Years of Iowa Life, University of Iowa professor Stephen Bloom questions Iowa’s role as the first caucus in the nation, writing, “Of Iowa’s 99 counties, 88 are classified as rural. Iowa’s capital and largest city is Des Moines (pop: 203,000), whose primary business is insurance. The state is 91 percent white…
The bulk of jobs here are low-income ones most Iowans don’t want. Many have simply packed up and left the state (which helps keep the unemployment rate statewide low). Those who stay in rural Iowa are often the elderly waiting to die, those too timid (or lacking in educated) to peer around the bend for better opportunities, an assortment of waste-toids and meth addicts with pale skin and rotted teeth, or those who quixotically believe, like Little Orphan Annie, that ‘The sun’ll come out tomorrow.’”
Of course, the winner in Iowa has a 50-50 shot of becoming president, but John McCain launched his come-back from New Hampshire. I suppose we’ll see, yeah?
"Follow who’s up and who’s down in the race for the 2012 Republican presidential nomination with USA TODAY’s Presidential Poll Tracker. This interactive, powered by data from RealClearPolitics, allows you to see who’s leading the GOP race now as well as track how the campaign has evolved over time.”
The data is complied from several sources, including:
Ron Paul’s supporters have offered a plethora of alibis for why the congressman is not really, really, really responsible for the racist and homophobic sewage mailed out in newsletters bearing his name, and ads for those newsletters bearing his signature.
Most attempts to shift blame are based on the premise that Paul did not himself write the articles (which is likely true). The finger of blame is most often pointed at Lew Rockwell, who edited the newsletter and was vice-president of Ron Paul & Associates, the business name of the enterprise.
However, this ignores the fact that it was Ron Paul who hired him for those positions and should have known that Rockwell was capable of such writing, having been closely associated with him for a long time; Rockwell had been Paul’s chief of staff when Paul was in congress and had worked on Paul’s 1988 presidential campaign.
Rockwell, however, denies writing the articles, meaning we would have to accept that they were written by some third party, presumably a freelancer or multiple freelancers. That doesn’t change much either, though, since freelancers are hired (and their work edited) by the editor. Who was Lew Rockwell. Who was hired by Ron Paul. Who knew what he was hiring.
Newt is a liar. He’s been a lying politico for several decades and to think that there are people out there who consider him to be a viable presidential candidate is beyond me. Great job on this issue. Voter fraud is going to be huge in 2012.
Thank you! Gingrich is such a pompous ass, and I wish I were right when I said he had no shot earlier this year. I remember thinking his name was “Goddamn Gingrich” back in the day thanks to my father.
Voter fraud is a big deal, and GOP-ers are apparently just now discovering it. However, not in regards to preventing people from voting, i.e. Voter ID law, but when they think they’ve been wronged, a la Newt and Rick Perry. I think it would serve Democrats well to focus on how Voter ID laws punish those who want to participate in elections instead of ignoring the issue.
The majority opinion in Lawrence v. Texas was built on pretty shaky ground and frankly, contorts itself just to avoid invoking the Equality Clause as O'Connor's concurrent opinion did. Sure, the outcome was the same (decriminalizing same-sex sodomy), but O'Connor's opinion would have paved the path to completely ending homosexual discrimination in every sphere in America.
That this law as applied to private, consensual conduct is unconstitutional under the Equal Protection Clause does not mean that other laws distinguishing between heterosexuals and homosexuals would similarly fail under rational basis review. Texas cannot assert any legitimate state interest here, such as national security or preserving the traditional institution of marriage. Unlike the moral disapproval of same-sex relations – the asserted state interest in this case – other reasons exist to promote the institution of marriage beyond mere moral disapproval of an excluded group.
However, she does not elaborate beyond that, nor does she suggest that should be the standard. The issue she hit upon was that the law was not applied equally and created only one class of people to whom the criminal sanctions of the law applied.
Though if Lawrence had been decided along O’Connor’s reasoning, it would be much stronger precendent to fight discrimination.
Paying-per-signature ups the risk of fraud because people have more motivation to defraud your campaign. Guess what Gingrich is now blaming for his failure to get on the ballot?
Also Wednesday, CNN reported that Gingrich, campaigning in Iowa ahead of Tuesday’s caucuses, said that someone his campaign hired to help him get on the Virginia ballot submitted fraudulent signatures.
"We hired somebody who turned in false signatures. We turned in 11,100 — we needed 10,000 — 1,500 of them were by one guy who frankly committed fraud," Gingrich reportedly told a woman at a campaign stop in Algona, Iowa.
Never mind the Board of Elections and the Republican Party of Virginia advises 15,000-20,000 signatures…
It’s Virginia’s fault, this guy’s fault, etc. Not Newt’s fault, even though they didn’t begin collecting signatures until around Thanksgiving. Nope. Not his fault. Note he didn’t say the campaign is taking legal remedies against the signature gatherer, nor did he name the person.
If this is true, I called the fraud. Not that it matters - with such a low amount of signatures, over 90% would have to be valid. The Virginia GOP sets the standard for acceptance without per-signature review at 15,000, and advises such a large amount, simply because “many people who are not registered to vote will sign a petition" and people make mistakes with addresses - they may give a current address versus what’s on the voter registration.
Then we get to the it’s everyone’s fault but mine because reasons… Again Newt, no one to blame but yourself.
A man at a bar in Murrieta, California ribbed an off-duty cop that he ‘suck[ed] at darts,’ the cop, 42-year-old Dayle Long, reportedly responded by pulling out a gun and executing him in front of a shocked crowd in an incident one man described as ‘the most horrific scene I’ve seen in my entire life.’
Chris Hull, a 39-year-old Temecula resident, said he was inside the bar and saw the shooting happen.
Hull said he witnessed a man walking up while Hull and a group of friends were playing darts. The man reportedly identified himself as an off-duty cop and started a discussion with the group about darts.
“We were playing darts, and he says ‘I’m better at darts than you are,”’ Hull said.
“My buddy says, ‘Aw, you suck at darts.’ (The man) says, ‘That’s why I’m a cop, I can do whatever I want to do.’”
Hull said his friend, identified only as Danny, asked the man, “Really, you can do anything?” The man then pulled out his gun, Hull said, and after the group repeatedly asked him to put it away he “pops three rounds into my friend Sam.”
Hull identified his friend as Sam Venettes. He didn’t answer a request for Vanette’s age or hometown, but said he was a “hardworking guy” who “works three jobs.”
Police have not released any information on the name of the victim.
“I just watched the most horrific scene I’ve seen in my entire life,” Hull told Patch.
“This is the worst day of my life.”
It should be noted, the cop was a 10-year veteran of the force.
Fucking hell… who gave that guy a badge and a gun?!
To be clear, here’s how he introduced the segment:
“Yes, ladies. And I know it’s women who offer that snide criticism… so let me be clear. These tips are not for you. They’re for men. So if I sound sexist, get over it. Most of you have shopping in your blood. Most men would rather give blood than shop. Just the way it is, ladies. You don’t need these tips. Your significant others do.”
Here’s his full advice. Yes, I know he meant it as a joke. But it’s not even funny. Even when he’s not being sexist, the jokes are just outmoded and clichéd. It’s Cavuto giggling and essentially saying, “Hehe, women.”
Just in time for the holidays, the City of Ft. Lauderdale has come up with a way to help the homeless who have relatives in other parts of the country who are willing to take care of them.
Tuesday, the Ft. Lauderdale city commission approved a $25,000 program which will buy them one-way bus tickets out of town. The program won’t cost taxpayers a dime. It’s being paid for by the Florida Law Enforcement Trust Fund, which is money confiscated from criminals.
Vice Mayor Bobby DuBose was the only commissioner to vote against the program, saying he believes that there are other ways the money could be used to help the homeless. He said he was also concerned that some homeless people may take advantage of the program and use it as a cheap vacation.
So this is one way on not dealing with a problem…
I love the charge homeless people might take a cheap vacation. It’s just such a dick thing to say, particularly after you point out the money could be used in other ways to deal with homelessness. Right now, it seems the two ways communities deal with homeless are either criminalizing it via laws regarding loitering, etc. or by sweeping them from the community.
Homeless people are still people. I’ve nearly been there. We still hover close to the edge. Many of our homeless are veterans, GLBTQ youth, mentally ill, etc. - or people who’ve fallen on rough times in a terrible economy.
You don’t lose your humanity when you lose your home. How hard is that to understand?
In summary, Newt’s lived in Virginia since 1999 - his representative to the Virginia House of Delegates (until 2008) was the same delegate who sponsored the bill. You’ve had twelve years to figure this shit out, Newt. You should know the rules.
But, alas, it’s a “failed system” he seems to have just discovered yesterday. Newt’s statement, via his campaign director:
"Only a failed system excludes four out of the six major candidates seeking access to the ballot," Campaign Director Michael Krull said in a statement. "Voters deserve the right to vote for any top contender, especially leading candidates. We will work with the Republican Party of Virginia to pursue an aggressive write-in campaign to make sure that all the voters of Virginia are able to vote for the candidate of their choice."
Krull’s statement is a titch dishonest - Huntsman, Bachmann, and Santorum didn’t even try to get on the primary ballot, excluding themselves by default. Also, there’s a huge problem with this “aggressive write-in campaign” strategy. Virginia doesn’t allow write-ins. § 24.2-529 states: “No write-in shall be permitted on ballots in primary elections.” I would say the meaning is quite explicit. None. Nada. No write-ins. There’s not even a write-in line on the ballot.
Krull continued to stick his foot in his mouth, posting Saturday on the Newt Gingrich Facebook page that this parallels Pearl Harbor.
"Newt and I agreed that the analogy is December 1941: We have experienced an unexpected set-back, but we will re-group and re-focus with increased determination, commitment and positive action."
Yep. Totally Pearl Harbor. Newt’s failure to organize is just like a horrific attack that left 2,402 people dead and 1,247 wounded. Commenters on the page were rightly galled by the comparison. A sampling:
As several commentators have pointed out, this was not a problem in 2008 for Ron Paul, John McCain, Fred Thompson, Mike Huckabee, Rudy Giuliani, or Mitt Romney. Nor was it a problem for Barack Obama, Hillary Clinton, Bill Richardson, Joe Biden, John Edwards, or Dennis Kucinich. Yep. Even Dennis Kucinich was organized enough to get on the ballot.
It appears this was a spectacular failure of organization on the part of Gingrich’s campaign. Even though he’s essentially risen from the dead to become the front-runner in many polls, this gift appears to be insufficient motivation for the Gingrich 2012 team. Despite opening a campaign office August 30th in Arlington, Va. and over 200 volunteers collecting signatures, the campaign was only able to muster 11,050 signatories. At a fundraiser Thursday, Gingrich claimed the campaign had 12,000-14,000 signatures collected, and assured supporters he would be on the ballot. The Virginia Republican Party and the State Board of Elections advise:
"Because many people who are not registered to vote will sign a petition, it is recommended that 15,000 - 20,000 signatures be obtained with at least 700 signatures from each congressional district."
To quote the also-disqualified Rick Perry:
Wednesday, Gingrich claimed to have all the signatures he needed, but “wanted to come to Virginia to deliver them personally.” He didn’t, but that’s irrelevant. Newt also claimed at a rally in Arlington this week, “Once again, Virginia is going to disappoint the Republican establishment ‘cause we’re going to turn in vastly more signatures than they need.”
Because the deadline is coming up so quickly, we’ve got a pretty good budget to work with. We can offer $1 per signature, with a $50 bonus for every 100 signatures (in other words, if you get 100 signatures, you get $150, if you get 300 signatures, you get $450, if you get 1,000 signatures, you get $1,500). In addition, if you can put together a crew to get signatures, they can get paid the same amount, and you can get a $1,000 bonus for every 2,000 signatures your crew collects.
Incentives for signature collecting equals more false signatures. Assuming Gingrich collected 400 signatures from all districts, that meant over 90% of his signatures would have to also be valid.
Fast-forward to 2012 and switch sides. In Virginia, where recent polls have Gingrich leading Romney in the primary, a lack of organization has likely cost Gingrich those delegates. And the race is beginning to tighten somewhat. Take a look at averaged national polling data from 12/1-12/23.
Rather than Pearl Harbor, a more apt comparison for Gingrich may be Aesop’s fable about the ant and the grasshopper. The grasshopper, who was not in the habit of work or showing up on Mondays, chose to spend the summer and fall singing while the ant worked to store up food and prepare for winter. When winter blows in, the grasshopper finds itself dying of hunger and freezing. It asks the ant for food and shelter, but is turned away by the ant because the grasshopper screwed itself by being idle.
Romney began collecting signatures in August. Gingrich assumed he’d get the signatures, and chose to flit about doing speaking gigs and campaign appearances outside of Virginia. His campaign didn’t begin collecting signatures until around Thanksgiving. The result? An entitled old white dude with a Tiffany’s account didn’t get what he wanted and now he wants to break the established rules to wage a write-in campaign, moans through a spokesman that this is his Pearl Harbor, and insults the Republican Party of Virginia for following the rules and cross-checking signatures with addresses in the electronic voter database.
(Incidentally, Newt penned a novel about Pearl Harbor, which the New York Times panned as a “war on punctuation” in a review titled “An Assault on Hawaii. On Grammar Too.”)
So, yes, Virginia, there is a Santa Claus, and he brought Newt Gingrich a steaming pile of failure. And no, Virginia, that man won’t be on your ballot. Looks like Newt needs to exercise a little personal responsibility he’s so fond of preaching. In conclusion, pull yourself up by your Tiffany bootstraps. You did it to yourself.
Cognitive Dissonance counts down the Top 25 Songs of 2011
I counted down my picks for the Top 25 Songs of 2011 on my radio show this Friday, and my pal Cameron (who really should write for Rolling Stone), counted down his Top 25 on my show Dec. 16th. I thought I’d share the two lists with the Tumblrverse.
Meg’s list (December 23, 2011)
25. “Victory Song” by Scott H. Biram 24. “All At Once” by The Airborne Toxic Event 23. “Senator” by Stephen Malkmus & The Jicks 22. “Don’t Owe You a Thang” by Gary Clark Jr. 21. “Just a Creep” by Dum Dum Girls 20. “Serve the People” by Handsome Furs 19. “Endless Summer” by The Jezabels 18. “Belong” by The Pains of Being Pure At Heart 17. “Estate Sale Sign” by The Mountain Goats 16. “The Words That Maketh Murder” by PJ Harvey 15. “Bug” by Wavves 14. “This Is Why We Fight” by The Decemberists 13. “Hell Broke Luce” by Tom Waits 12. “Come Back to Me” by The Rapture 11. “Get Away” by Yuck 10. “Holocene” by Bon Iver 09. “Shell Games” by Bright Eyes 08. “Lonely Boy” by The Black Keys 07. “Pumped Up Kicks” by Foster the People 06. “Yonkers” by Tyler, the Creator 05. “Otis” by Kanye West & JAY Z, feat. Otis Redding 04. “Keep Your Heart” by TV on the Radio 03. “Lotus Flower” by Radiohead 02. “Shake It Out” by Florence + The Machine 01. “Video Games” by Lana Del Rey
Cameron’s list (Dec. 16th):
25. “Bad Karma” by Ida Maria 24. “Heart’s All Gone” by Blink 182 23. “Hell Broke Luce” by Tom Waits 22. “Shell Games” by Bright Eyes 21. “Every Night My Teeth Are Falling Out” by The Antlers 20. “Don’t Play No Game That I Can’t Win” by Beastie Boys featuring Santigold 19. “Get Away” by Yuck 18. “Dedication to My Ex (Miss That)” by Lloyd featuring André 3000 & Lil Wayne 17. “Perth” by Bon Iver 16. “Shoelaces” by The Submarines 15. “Sail” by AWOLNATION 14. “Under Cover of Darkness” by The Strokes 13. “Come Back to Me” by The Rapture 12. “What the Water Gave Me” by Florence + The Machine 11. “Holocene” by Bon Iver 10. “Otis” by by Kanye West & JAY Z, feat. Otis Redding 09. “Down By the Water” by The Decemberists 08. “Pumped Up Kicks” by Foster the People 07. “Satellite” by The Kills 06. “Arlandria” by Foo Fighters 05. “Shake It Out” by Florence + The Machine 04. “Lotus Flower” by Radiohead 03. “How Come You Never Go There” by Feist 02. “Video Games” by Lana Del Rey 01. “Rolling in the Deep [Jamie xx Shuffle]” by Adele + Jamie xx featuring Childish Gambino
“How long do you think Sean Hannity’s show would last if four times in one sentence, he made a comment about, say, the President of the United States, and said that he looked like a skinny, ghetto crackhead? Which, by the way, you might want to say that Barack Obama does.”—
Here’s the thing - Matthews said Gingrich “looks like a car bomber” in a riff about him being/looking creepy. Not exactly high-brow political commentary, but also not embedded in racial stereotypes like stating Obama looks like a crackhead from the ghetto.
Hint for Brent Bozell: When you’re attacking a fellow talking head for resorting to the lowest common denominator, it’s best not to seek a, um, lowest-er common denominator.
Happy freakin’ Holidays, y’all - The US House did something for the people. From MSNBC:
The House is expected to clear the measure shortly, capping a swift retreat by House Republicans. Their move to force a holiday season confrontation with Obama and Senate Democrats had threatened to hit 160 million workers with a tax increase on Jan. 1, and it backfired badly.
The young father stood in line at the Kmart layaway counter, wearing dirty clothes and worn-out boots. With him were three small children. He asked to pay something on his bill because he knew he wouldn’t be able to afford it all before Christmas. Then a mysterious woman stepped up to the counter.
"She told him, ‘No, I’m paying for it,’" recalled Edna Deppe, assistant manager at the store in Indianapolis. "He just stood there and looked at her and then looked at me and asked if it was a joke. I told him it wasn’t, and that she was going to pay for him. And he just busted out in tears." … Most of the donors have done their giving secretly.
Dona Bremser, an Omaha nurse, was at work when a Kmart employee called to tell her that someone had paid off the $70 balance of her layaway account, which held nearly $200 in toys for her 4-year-old son. ”I was speechless,” Bremser said. “It made me believe in Christmas again.”
Dozens of other customers have received similar calls in Nebraska, Michigan, Iowa, Indiana and Montana. The benefactors generally ask to help families who are squirreling away items for young children. They often pay a portion of the balance, usually all but a few dollars or cents so the layaway order stays in the store’s system.
The phenomenon seems to have begun in Michigan before spreading, Kmart executives said. ”It is honestly being driven by people wanting to do a good deed at this time of the year,” said Salima Yala, Kmart’s division vice president for layaway.
The good Samaritans seem to be visiting mainly Kmart stores, though a Wal-Mart spokesman said a few of his stores in Joplin, Mo., and Chicago have also seen some layaway accounts paid off.
The anonymous benefactors truly exhibit the spirit of giving and taking care of their fellow man. Makes me believe there’s some good people in the world, y’know?
A Utah man who was trying to kill a mouse ended up shooting one roommate and getting another arrested for child rape, while a fourth roommate slept through the whole thing.
Taylorsville Police Sgt. Tracy Wyant told Deseret News that the first roommate, 27, had been trying to kill a rodent when he missed and the round went through the kitchen wall and struck a second roommate, 28.
Officers responding to the scene early Tuesday morning found a 13-year-old girl hiding in a basement closet. She told police she had been having an affair with the third roommate, 34-year-old Paul Daniel Kunzler. During an interview, the Children’s Justice Center determined that the girl had been having sex with Kunzler over a period of four months. He was arrested on suspicion of two counts of rape of a child, three counts of sodomy of a child and three counts of sexual abuse of a child.
A fourth roommate, Zach Baker, told Fox 13 that he slept through the gunfire. ”I got woken up by the cops,” Baker said. “They came storming in my room, checking to make sure everybody was OK and nobody was shot or anything like that.”
"I’d never seen the girl there before and I don’t know how long she’d been there," he added. "They said she’d been hiding in a closet and that creeps me out. … I knew the guy was weird, but I didn’t expect anything like that to happen."
Just in time for the holidays, one of Google’s newest tools pops up. Here’s the description:
The Google Veterans Network is our employee volunteer community that strives to make Google a great place to work for those who have served, their families and their friends. We also aim to be a positive contributor to the veteran community at large. Google products and services have made our lives a little easier - whether we are still in the service, transitioning out, or on a new path in our civilian lives. We wanted to give back to the community and help other veterans and their families discover how useful these tools can be. So we created Google for Veterans and Families - a collection of free and useful tools from our veterans’ community to yours.
It includes methods of getting in touch, recording your story, reaching out to fellow vets, and even document storage.
Maybe I read that post about John Walsh wrong, but how is he defending people who want to cut vital services if he's talking about how dangerous it is? Again, perhaps I read wrong, just want to clarify for myself :)
Thanks for the catch - I fixed it! Blogging on Nyquil here and got my semantics turned around or something.
I read my own post wrong, not you. My derp, not yours.
I just had a photography client cancel, and now we’re about $150 short for the month. You all came through in a magnificent way this month and if there’s anyone else who can help, we would be more grateful than you can imagine. Without the generosity of you readers, we would not have made it through the month thus far. If you can help, there’s a widget on the sidebar where you can donate. Thanks again, and happy holidays!
To answer an anon, here’s the backstory on why I’m asking for help. It’s not to pay Christmas or anything similar. It’s to pay for utilities, rent, and food. A sincere thank you to everyone who’s helped thus far!
I think she’s awkwardly awesome. The term “Jewish carols” suggests a titch of cultural insensitivity, but the fact that she IS being inclusive is great, versus just saying, “Wow, it must suck to be Jewish at Christmas” or something similar. I heard those exact words come from my friend’s mom in regards to her boyfriend.