Tag: Violence

Least Surprising News of the Day

Pro Publica has reviewed hundreds of videos from protests, and has spotted the obvious, that it’s the police who are rioting, not the protesters:

As protests denouncing police brutality against unarmed Black people spread to thousands of cities, it was videos of police violence — this time, directed at protesters — that went viral. Clips showed officers launching tear gas canisters at protesters’ heads, shooting pepper spray from moving vehicles and firing foam bullets into crowds.

ProPublica looked at nearly 400 social media posts showing police responses to protesters and found troubling conduct by officers in at least 184 of them. In 59 videos, pepper spray and tear gas were used improperly; in a dozen others, officers used batons to strike noncombative demonstrators; and in 87 videos, officers punched, pushed and kicked retreating protesters, including a few instances in which they used an arm or knee to exert pressure on a protester’s neck.

While the weapons, tactics and circumstances varied from city to city, what we saw in one instance after another was a willingness by police to escalate confrontations.

The goal of police in protests about the police is most often to escalate so that they can respond even more violently.

They are showing the maturity of Eric Cartman.

Dudley Do-Right This Ain’t

There are now indications that Gabriel Wortman, who engaged in a wade ranging shooting spree in Nova Scotia resulting in the deaths of 22 people, was a confidential informant being run by the Royal Canadian Mounted Police. (RCMP)

He had accumulated an extensive accumulation of illegal weapons while having accusations of domestic violence lodged against him.

Additionally, he received a massive (Can$475,000.00) cash transfer 2½ weeks before the shooting.

Experts say that this all points to his being an undercover asset of the law enforcement agency:

The withdrawal of $475,000 in cash by the man who killed 22 Nova Scotians in April matches the method the RCMP uses to send money to confidential informants and agents, sources say.

Gabriel Wortman, who is responsible for the largest mass killing in Canadian history, withdrew the money from a Brink’s depot in Dartmouth, N.S., on March 30, stashing a carryall filled with hundred-dollar bills in the trunk of his car.


Sources in both banking and the RCMP say the transaction is consistent with how the RCMP funnels money to its confidential informants and agents, and is not an option available to private banking customers.

The RCMP has repeatedly said that it had no “special relationship” with Wortman.

Court documents show Wortman owned a New Brunswick-registered company called Berkshire-Broman, the legal owner of two of his vehicles (including one of his police replica cars). Whatever the purpose of that company, there is no public evidence that it would have been able to move large quantities of cash. Wortman also ran his own denturist business and there is no reason to believe it also would require him to handle large amounts of cash.

If Wortman was an RCMP informant or agent, it could explain why the force appeared not to take action on complaints about his illegal guns and his assault on his common-law wife.

A Mountie familiar with the techniques used by the force in undercover operations, but not with the details of the investigation into the shooting, says Wortman could not have collected his own money from Brink’s as a private citizen.

“There’s no way a civilian can just make an arrangement like that,” he said in an interview.

He added that Wortman’s transaction is consistent with the Mountie’s experience in how the RCMP pays its assets. “I’ve worked a number of CI cases over the years and that’s how things go. All the payments are made in cash. To me that transaction alone proves he has a secret relationship with the force.”

Without some sort of law enforcement or intelligence service involvement, I cannot imagine that he could have been able to do any of this.

There have been a number of infamous instances, Whitey Bulger being the most prominent, where law enforcement assets have gone onto commit notorious crimes.

I think that this is one such case, and the RCMP will never come clean about it.

Those Buffalo Police ERT Members Who Quit Were Driven out by Their Own Union

The officers who quit the unit (they are still employed by the Buffalo PD) quit because Buffalo Police Benevolent Association notified them that they would be on their own if they needed a lawyer.

You will recall that the BPBA claimed that they had quit in solidarity with their fellow officers, who have been charged with assault.

Once again, the police lied:


Two officers of the Buffalo Police Department’s Emergency Response Team spoke with 7 Eyewitness News under the condition their names not be used.

The officers are part of the 57-person volunteer assignment team that resigned Friday, following an incident involving two of their members Thursday night in Niagara Square. They did not resign from the police department, only from their roles on the team.

The officers we spoke with said the Buffalo Police Benevolent Association’s statement asserting all 57 officers resigned from ERT in a “show of support” with the two officers that were suspended without pay is not true.

“I don’t understand why the union said it’s a thing of solidarity. I think it sends the wrong message that ‘we’re backing our own’ and that’s not the case,” said one officer with whom we spoke.

“We quit because our union said [they] aren’t legally backing us anymore. So why would we stand on a line for the City with no legal backing if something [were to] happen? Has nothing to do with us supporting,” said another.

A representative from the Buffalo Police Benevolent Association told 7 Eyewitness News Reporter Hannah Buehler the officers resigned in “disgust” with how the two officers were treated.


7 Eyewitness News was not able to reach PBA president John Evans to confirm this information or get a response to several officers shooting down his assertions, but we did obtain an email sent to PBA members by Evans.

It states, in part:

In light of this, in order to maintain the sound financial structure of the PBA it will be my opinion the PBA NOT to pay for any ERT or SWAT members legal defense related to these protests going forward. This Admin in conjunction with DA John Flynn and or JP Kennedy could put a serious dent in the PBA’s funds.

If you get a quote from a police spokesman, fact check it.

If it comes from the PBA, you need to confirm every word, including the “and” and the “the”.

Nothing of Value was Lost

The morning after in Richmond, Virginia – where they burned the Daughters of the Confederacy building and hung a noose around Jefferson Davis’ neck. pic.twitter.com/BdYWGAf6re

— Mallory Noe-Payne (@MalloryNoePayne) May 31, 2020

Not sure how I feel about the noose

During protests over the police murder of George Floyd, protestors set fire to the United Daughters of the Confederacy headquarters.

Given the reality of the situation in the United States, perhaps they should share a building with the Benedict Arnold memorial.

What, there is no Benedict Arnold memorial building?

Well, there shouldn’t be a United Daughters of the Confederacy building either.

You and your treasonous ancestors can go f%$# themselves.

They Intended to Break the Law

Louisville police came upon a gathering, a restauranteur serving food to the neighborhood during curfew, and turned off their body cameras and opened fire on the crowd.

The mayor of Louisville fired the police chief, so he knew what was going on.

The cops were “On Safari”, looking for some black heads to bust, and so they went out with their body cameras off, and something went pear shaped, and they murdered a pillar of the community.

The FBI and the state police are investigating:

A city reeling from four straight nights of violent protests woke Monday to learn that the owner of a beloved West End eatery had been shot by police and National Guards troops responding to gunfire.

David McAtee, known in the Russell neighborhood for his popular barbeque stand outside of Dino’s Food Mart, was killed early Monday morning as Louisville Metro Police and National Guard were trying to break up a “large crowd” in the parking lot of the mart at West Broadway and 26th Street. He was 53.

Gov. Andy Beshear ordered Kentucky State Police to investigate the shooting, which will be a joint effort between the FBI Louisville Field Office and the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Western District, federal officials said.

Hours after the governor publicly asked Louisville officials to release a “significant” amount of body camera footage from the incident “as soon as possible,” the city announced there wasn’t any.

Two LMPD officers involved in the shooting either had failed to activate or were not wearing body cameras during the incident, Mayor Greg Fischer told the public Monday night.

The mayor also said Monday he fired LMPD Chief Steven Conrad, who announced he would retire at the end of June amid mounting public pressure following the police killing of 26-year-old ER technician Breonna Taylor.


Surveillance footage and police radio transmissions released by LMPD Monday evening offered no clear-cut answers.

However, “dozens” of officers were at the scene, according to the recordings. Several protesters and Russell residents there Monday afternoon questioned why so many officers and troops were present in the first place before the shooting.

The most significant protest Sunday night was roughly 20 blocks away downtown.


McAtee’s body was at the scene until at least Monday afternoon. A group of LMPD officers in face shields formed a line just behind the crime scene tape, facing neighbors and protesters who came out throughout the day.

This stinks to high heaven, and these officers need to be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law.

Well, Now We Know What Ends Both-Siderism Among Journalists

All you have to do to make them look at the actual facts is to put them in the line of fire.

Then, suddenly the press sees that out of control cops are out of control cops.

It really sucks that the only way to get the press to stop it’s lazy equivalencies is to actually physically harm them.

This is not indicative of people who are good at their job:

The targeting, harassment, shooting and arrest of working journalists by police over the last several days is having a significant — maybe even profound — effect on the coverage of the mass demonstrations over the death of George Floyd.

It’s a shift from watching the protests through the eyes of the police to watching the police through the eyes of the protesters.

It’s a shift from seeing the police primarily as sources and protectors to seeing them as subjects and aggressors.

Exhibit A is the lead story in the New York Times print edition on Monday morning, which, instead of dutifully reporting on the official version of clashes around the nation, boldly addressed the reality that police around the country have been responding to protests against their aggression with yet more of the same, and have themselves been inciting more violence.


The authors also wrote that shows of force by highly-militarized police weren’t bringing calm. “Instead, some people said, it was escalating tensions and serving as a reminder of the regular use of military equipment and tactics by local police forces.”


This sentence struck me as both incredibly naïve and – at the same time – nothing short of revolutionary:

Now, some are questioning whether tough police tactics against demonstrators are actually making the violence worse rather than quelling it.


Slate collected a number of social media clips and very effectively aggregated them under the headline: “Police Erupt in Violence Nationwide.”

So, it’s clear how you get journalists to start reporting, and stop cultivating sources:  You just need to make sure that someone beats the crap out of them.

It’s a hell of a state of affairs.

There Needs to be an Independent and Aggressive Investigation of the Biden Allegations

First, Tara Reade alleged that Joe Biden had sexually assaulted her.

Then we had reports from her brother and a fellow Congressional staffer (still anonymous) saying that she had related the alleged incident to them contemporaneously in 1993.

THEN we have what appears to be a call from her mother to Larry King in 1993 referring to this incident.

Now, we have a neighbor, one who says that she is voting for Joe Biden anyway, has announced that she was told about the alleged incident to them in 1993.

This allegation, while not definitive, is clearly credible, and bears an independent and aggressive investigation:

In March, when a former aide to Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden accused the candidate of sexually assaulting her in 1993, two people came forward to say that the woman, Tara Reade, had told them of the incident shortly after it allegedly occurred — her brother, Collin Moulton, and a friend who asked to remain anonymous for fear of retribution.

Now two more sources have come forward to corroborate certain details about Reade’s claims. One of them — a former neighbor of Reade’s — has told Insider for the first time, on the record, that Reade disclosed details about the alleged assault to her in the mid-1990s.

“This happened, and I know it did because I remember talking about it,” Lynda LaCasse, who lived next door to Reade in the mid-’90s, told Insider.

The other source, Lorraine Sanchez, who worked with Reade in the office of a California state senator in the mid-’90s, told Insider that she recalls Reade complaining at the time that her former boss in Washington, DC, had sexually harassed her, and that she had been fired after raising concerns.

 These allegations are now unequivocally credible.

Drip, Drip, Drip………

It appears that Tara Reade’s late mother called into Larry King about her alleged assault in 1993, roughly contemporaneously with the alleged facts.

I am still not convinced of the veracity of Ms. Reade’s claims, but I am far more credulous of her accusations following the emergence of this call into king’s show.

Anyone in the #MeToo community who is not demanding a rigorous and independent investigation at this time is a hypocrite, period, full stop:

A new piece of evidence has emerged buttressing the credibility of Tara Reade’s claim that she told her mother about allegations of sexual harassment and assault related to her former boss, then-Sen. Joe Biden. Biden, through a spokesperson, has denied the allegations. Reade has claimed to various media outlets, including The Intercept, that she told her mother, a close friend, and her brother about both the harassment and, to varying degrees of detail, the assault at the time. Her brother, Collin Moulton, and her friend, who has asked to remain anonymous, both confirmed that they heard about the allegations from Reade at the time. Reade’s mother died in 2016, but both her brother and friend also confirmed Reade had told her mother, and that her mother, a longtime feminist and activist, urged her to go to the police.

In interviews with The Intercept, Reade also mentioned that her mother had made a phone call to “Larry King Live” on CNN, during which she made reference to her daughter’s experience on Capitol Hill. Reade told The Intercept that her mother called in asking for advice after Reade, then in her 20s, left Biden’s office. “I remember it being an anonymous call and her saying my daughter was sexually harassed and retaliated against and fired, where can she go for help? I was mortified,” Reade told me.

Reade couldn’t remember the date or the year of the phone call, and King didn’t include the names of callers on his show. I was unable to find the call, but mentioned it in an interview with Katie Halper, the podcast host who first aired Reade’s allegation. After the podcast aired, a listener managed to find the call and sent it to The Intercept.

On August 11, 1993, King aired a program titled, “Washington: The Cruelest City on Earth?” Toward the end of the program, he introduces a caller dialing in from San Luis Obispo, California. Congressional records list August 1993 as Reade’s last month of employment with Biden’s Senate office, and, according to property records, Reade’s mother, Jeanette Altimus, was living in San Luis Obispo County. Here is the transcript of the beginning of the call:

KING: San Luis Obispo, California, hello.

CALLER: Yes, hello. I’m wondering what a staffer would do besides go to the press in Washington? My daughter has just left there, after working for a prominent senator, and could not get through with her problems at all, and the only thing she could have done was go to the press, and she chose not to do it out of respect for him.

KING: In other words, she had a story to tell but, out of respect for the person she worked for, she didn’t tell it?

CALLER: That’s true.

King’s panel of guests offered no suggestions, and instead the conversation veered into a discussion of whether any of the men on set would leak damaging personal information about a rival to the press.

The Democratic Party establishment (There is no Democratic Party establishment) wanted Joe Biden in the worst possible way, and now it appears that the Democratic Party establishment (There is no Democratic Party establishment) got Joe Biden in the worse possible way.

Canada Really Needs to Shut Down Its Southern Border

Because Corona Virus is the least of the dangerous diseases coming from the USA.

Now they are getting mass shootings:

On an overcast Nova Scotia morning, flags fluttered at half-mast and memorials sprouted up like flowers, as families and friends learned of losses, a province grieved, and a country struggled to comprehend the staggering toll of Canada’s deadliest shooting.

RCMP now say there are “in excess of 19 people” dead, and that number is expected to rise further. Police are investigating, and also mourning one of their own, RCMP Constable Heidi Stevenson, who was killed in the attack.

“I know this is a challenging time for Nova Scotians and that there are so many unanswered questions,” RCMP Chief Superintendent Chris Leather said at a press conference in Dartmouth on Monday. “I want to reassure you that we are working hard to find out as much information as possible in the days and weeks to come. We will be in this for months to come, I am sure.”

The perpetrator, who has been identified by police as 51-year-old Gabriel Wortman, was shot by police in a gas station parking lot in Enfield, outside Halifax, around noon on Sunday.

In the small community of Wentworth, which lost four residents to the violence, Lisa Owen and Darrol Thurier sat in front of their house on Monday, holding back emotion as they looked down the road toward where their neighbours’ house had been.

The couple who lived in the home, Sean McLeod and Alanna Jenkins, are missing, their cars torched and their house burned to its foundation.


Some Observation on the NY Times Article About Joe Biden Sexual Assault Allegations

It is significant that the New York Times is finally publishing something about the Biden allegations, if just because it means that the story is now officially not beyond the pale.

While the Times article is marginally less dismissive than the ones found in WaPo or Salon, I would note that it has information that confirms Ms Reade’s account of events.
Of course, they wait to paragraph 25 to note the claim that:

The staff declined to take action, Ms. Reade said, after which she filed a written complaint with a Senate personnel office. She said office staff took away most of her duties, including supervising the interns; assigned her a windowless office; and made the work environment uncomfortable for her.

And then a few paragraphs later (paragraph 38) they note:

At the time of the alleged assault, Ms. Reade said she was responsible for coordinating the interns in the office. Two former interns who worked with her said they never heard her describe any inappropriate conduct by Mr. Biden or saw her directly interact with him in any capacity but recalled that she abruptly stopped supervising them in April, before the end of their internship. Others who worked in the office at the time said they remembered Ms. Reade but not any inappropriate behavior.

(emphasis mine)

I’m not sure that this information should have been in the first paragraph, but it should have been in the first 5 paragraphs, and the statement by the interns about her abrupt removal should have been noted immediately following.

Talk about burying the lede.

Also, note that Fox News, of all people, pointed out a stealth edit of the article: (Deletion in red)

No other allegation about sexual assault surfaced in the course of reporting, nor did any former Biden staff members corroborate any details of Ms. Reade’s allegation. The Times found no pattern of sexual misconduct by Mr. Biden, beyond the hugs, kisses and touching that women previously said made them uncomfortable.

All the news that’s fit to print, huh?

The GOP is Rolling Out the Brute Squad

Specifically, they are looking to put retired police and military in voting locations to intimidate voters.

I guess this explains why they are so opposed to postal voting, you cannot send the Brute Squad to everyone’s mailbox:

On Election Day in November, some polling places could be patrolled by off-duty police officers and veterans, according to a plan hatched by Republican operatives.

The idea is a reprisal of once-illegal Election Day “ballot security” intimidation tactics, intended to challenge voter registration and remove voters from the rolls. At a strategy session in February attended by conservative donors and activists, several people expressed a specific need for Republican poll watchers in “inner city” and predominantly Native American precincts, according to audio recordings of the event obtained by The Intercept and Documented.

“You get some [Navy] Seals in those polls and they’re going to say, ‘No, no, this is what it says. This is how we’re going to play this show,’” said Catherine Engelbrecht, founder of True the Vote, a group that lobbies for voting restrictions and organizes volunteers to go into precincts and aggressively challenge voters who they believe are improperly registered. “That’s what we need. We need people who are unafraid to call it like they see it.”

The Republican Party is not the opposition, it is the enemy.

Perspective of the Day

If Joe Biden Had a Personal History of Dismembering Grandmothers and Feeding Them to Children as an After-School Snack, He Would Still, in My View, Be Far Preferable to Donald Trump or Mike Pence

Liza Featherstone

Ms. Featherstone is commenting on the complete abandonment of #MeToo by the Democratic Party establishment (There is no Democratic Party establishment) with regard to Joe Biden.

I do not know if the most recent allegations of assault are true or not, but it is clear that the response of the Democratic Party establishment (There is no Democratic Party establishment) has been abjectly deplorable.

23 Years

Honestly, I never expected Harvey Weinstein to get such a long sentence, but IMHO, it is well justified:

Harvey Weinstein, the titan of Hollywood turned convicted rapist, has been sentenced to 23 years in prison on Wednesday in New York.

The fallen mogul was handed down his punishment by Judge James Burke at the New York supreme court having been convicted of two counts of sexual assault. The judge imposed 20 years for a first-degree criminal sex act for forcing oral sex on a production assistant, Miriam Haley, in 2006.

He also imposed a three-year sentence for third-degree rape of a woman whom the Guardian is not naming because her wishes over identification are not clear.

The two sentences will run consecutively, meaning that Weinstein, 67, will have to complete the terms of the criminal sex act before serving the rape sentence.


Trump Ignored a Pogrom While He Was in India

This is not a surprise. Trump has always had affection for racist demagogue authoritarians.

Still, the fact that there was a pogrom against Muslims in Delhi while Trump was visiting is a mark of both Trump’s venal nature, and Narendra Modi’s brazen bigotry:

The violence unleashed against Muslims in Delhi by armed Hindu mobs during President Donald Trump’s visit to India is a portent and a lesson. As Trump sat down to dine with India’s prime minister, Narendra Modi, on Tuesday, Hindus in the same city were beating and shooting Muslims, and Muslims were fighting back, trying to defend their homes and businesses from looters and arsonists. More than 40 people were killed—including an 85-year-old woman too frail to flee her burning home—and more than 200 people, mostly Muslims, were injured.

The Delhi police, who report directly to Home Minister Amit Shah, either stood idly by or escorted the mobs. Videos of police breaking CCTV cameras and taunting prone and bleeding Muslim men while filming them with their smartphones circulated on social media. The violence echoed that of 2002, when Modi was chief minister of Gujarat and authorities there did nothing to stem carnage that killed some 1,000 people, the majority of them Muslims. It also brought back memories of the revenge killings of at least 3,000 Sikhs in Delhi after the assassination of former Prime Minister Indira Gandhi by two of her Sikh bodyguards in 1984.

In all these cases, mobs targeting a single religious group were allowed to run riot, unchecked by police. This is the definition of a pogrom.

This is particularly disgraceful, though the US has been very accommodating Modi’s bigotry since his ascension to PM in 2014.

If you want a good, and engaging summary of just who and what Modi is, see this John Oliver video (banned in India):

Another Day, Another Shooting

At a brewery in Milwaukee, with at least 5 dead:

Officials said they are investigating why Anthony Ferrill — a 51-year-old electrician with a wife, grandchildren and a Doberman he adored — walked into his workplace and began shooting Wednesday afternoon, leaving five dead before killing himself.

On Thursday, a chilly wind blew through the deserted Molson Coors complex with its soaring red “Miller” beer sign, its employees sent home and the work halted on the factory floor. Residents across this Midwestern city grieved and gathered at a community prayer vigil. Relatives of the victims began making plans to bury the dead.

The five victims — utility workers, machinists and electricians — came from across southern Wisconsin to work at the iconic brewery, Molson Coors chief executive Gavin Hattersley said at an afternoon news conference. They were identified as Jesus Valle Jr., 33; Gennady Levshetz, 51; Trevor Wetselaar, 33; Dana Walk, 57; and Dale Hudson, 50.

Welcome to the new normal, and f%$# the NRA.

This is a Surprise

It is increasingly likely for corrupt and brutal police officers to face consequences, large as a result of groups like Black Lives Matter.

That being said, I am profoundly surprised that a Prince George’s County police officer was charged with murder less than 24 hours after he shot a black man 7 times and killed him.

Admittedly, he did shoot the victim 7 times while he was in handcuffs, but I figured that the officer’s claim that murder victim was on PCP would have gotten him at least a month before an investigation started:

The Maryland police officer who killed a handcuffed black man Monday night has been taken into custody and charged with second degree murder — less than 24 hours after the incident.


Stawinski identified the victim as 49-year-old William Green.

Police responded to reports of a driver who had rammed his vehicle into several other cars at around 8 p.m. Monday. They told reporters later that night that they suspected Green was high, and smelled PCP coming from his car. Stawinski no longer thinks that’s the case.

“We do not believe PCP was involved,” Stawinski said.

An officer then cuffed Green with his arms behind his back and strapped him into the passenger seat of the police cruiser.

About 20 minutes later, Officer Michael Owen then got into the driver’s seat and shot him. According to ABC, Green had asked the officer if he could use the bathroom — then the officer shot him seven times. Officers at the scene attempted lifesaving measures on him before transporting him to a hospital, where he was pronounced dead.


It’s extremely unusual for police departments to announce criminal charges against one of their own so soon after an officer-involved killing. Charges, if they come at all, can take weeks, if not months, to be filed — and often come after intense community pressure.

Hopefully, this is the start of a trend.

Tweet of the Day

Yes, shooting people is barbaric. The civilized thing is to use a bone saw pic.twitter.com/R4uT3c31ux

— Paul Krugman (@paulkrugman) December 6, 2019

Paul Krugman unloads a nearly toxic level snark on both Donald Trump and the House of Saud, in response the former’s obsequious Tweet about the Pensacola shooter, who was a Saudi.

The thing is, this was not some random Saudi tourist, it was a member of their military getting pilot training, so clearly someone in Riyadh seriously screwed the pooch with this guy.

God Bless America

Thank God that the NRA is here to protect us from common sense gun laws:

Authorities said the shooting at Saugus High School that left two students dead and three wounded occurred over a 16-second period in which a classmate pulled out a gun in the quad area and opened fire.

The gunfire broke out at 7:30 a.m., when students at the school were scheduled to be in their first-period classes, said Los Angeles County Sheriff Alex Villanueva.

Paramedics rushed onto the campus, treating the wounded, and law enforcement officers searched nearby neighborhoods for a 16-year-old boy they thought had fled after the shooting. Authorities later said the suspect, identified by neighbors and sheriff’s officials as Nathaniel Berhow, was found on campus with a self-inflicted gunshot wound to the head.

Officials said he was taken to a hospital and is in grave condition. Authorities said a message referencing the shooting, thought to have been posted before the attack, appeared on an Instagram account believed to be linked to the suspect. But Instagram said late Thursday, as first reported by BuzzFeed News, that the account didn’t belong to the teenager. A company representative said via email that the account has since been disabled “for violating our policies.”

Sheriff’s Capt. Kent Wegener said the teen was standing in the quad when he pulled a .45-caliber handgun from his backpack and opened fire on other students before turning the gun on himself. It was the suspect’s 16th birthday, authorities said.

What the f%$# is wrong with this country?