Sunday, October 21, 2012

Last Call

NEW HAVEN, Conn. (AP) — Kennedy cousin Michael Skakel, who will get his first parole hearing Wednesday, deserves to be released from prison a decade after he was convicted of killing his neighbor because he was a victim of a miscarriage of justice and has been a model inmate, his supporters say.
But the victim's relatives want Skakel kept in prison the rest of his life, saying he was properly convicted and has shown no remorse.
Skakel is serving 20 years to life for beating Martha Moxley to death with a golf club in 1975 in Greenwich when they were 15-year-old neighbors. Skakel is a nephew of Robert F. Kennedy's widow, Ethel Kennedy.
There's no such thing as a guilty man in prison, right?  Through the decades there was little doubt of Skakel's guilt.  I recall reading the efforts to explore other avenues and suspects, all for nothing.  None of us know if he is truly guilty or not, but the evidence was compelling.

I doubt he has any luck, but he is a Kennedy so all bets are off.

Putin On A Show

And what's Russia up to these days?  Seems ol' Vlad here is showing everyone how big and virile his missiles are.  I'm sure you're probably relieved.

President Vladimir Putin took a leading role in the latest tests of Russia's strategic nuclear arsenal, the most comprehensive since the 1991 Soviet collapse, the Kremlin said on Saturday.

The exercises, held mostly on Friday, featured prominently in news reports on state television which seemed aimed to show Russians and the world that Putin is the hands-on chief of a resurgent power.

Tests involving command systems and all three components of the nuclear "triad" - land and sea-launched long-range nuclear missiles and strategic bombers - were conducted "under the personal leadership of Vladimir Putin", the Kremlin said.

Say what you will about Republicans, at least they're not pretending we're still in the col...oh wait.  Romney really is pretending we're still in the Cold War. Even FOX is saying he needs to dial it back.

Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney calls Russia the No. 1 foe of the United States and promises to stand up to Russian President Vladimir Putin. But if he's elected president, he might find that he'll need Moscow's help.
Russia plays a critical role in facilitating the withdrawal of U.S. troops from Afghanistan. The United States also needs Moscow's cooperation on keeping nuclear materials away from terrorists and American adversaries, and preventing gridlock at the U.N. Security Council, where both countries have vetoes.

I still think Romney chokes on his foreign policy hypocrisy in Monday's debate.   We'll see.

Three Minutes Well Spent

This hits home for me because it is home for me.

This man says everything we've heard while our city council decides whether gays are people too.  It's hard to listen to him at first, but stick with it.  There's one hell of a twist coming, and I sat right here in my office and applauded.

I proudly share today's sarcasma d'art:

Deer Stoopid

A Fargo, N.D., radio caller seems to be a little confused about deer crossings.
And, you know, whether deer can read highway signs.
The woman identified only as Donna told radio station Y94 The Morning Playhouse she had been involved in three car accidents in the last few years, all involving deer just after she passed a deer crossing sign.
“My frustration is that Minnesota and North Dakota departments of transportation would allow these deer crossings to be in such high-traffic areas,” she told the radio hosts.  ”I mean I’ve even seen them on the interstate. Why are we encouraging deer to cross the interstate? I don’t get it.”
She goes on to say that she understands deer need to cross the road sometimes, but called encouraging them to cross on highways “so irresponsible.” She said she’d written letters to newspapers and TV stations, but no one seemed to want to spread the word on her issue.
As she talks, the radio host is heard saying, “um…”
Donna then comes to the conclusion that moving deer crossings to school crossings would be safer.

I thought this was a joke when I read it the first four times.  I couldn't believe someone was so stupid and they were using it to spread awareness for deer crossings because it's that time of year.

Well, played, Team Stupid.  Send in a rookie to distract us, way to go.

From The Observation Platform

Republicans are already crying foul at the thought of UN election observers being anywhere near US polling places, because apparently what would be welcome and necessary in any other "democratic" country doesn't apply to The Most Awesome Country Ever.

United Nations-affiliated election monitors from Europe and central Asia will be at polling places around the U.S. looking for voter suppression activities by conservative groups, a concern raised by civil rights groups during a meeting this week. The intervention has drawn criticism from a prominent conservative-leaning group combating election fraud.

Wingnut election fraud?  UNPOSSIBLE.

The Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE), a United Nations partner on democratization and human rights projects, will deploy 44 observers around the county on Election Day to monitor an array of activities, including potential disputes at polling places.

Liberal-leaning civil rights groups met with representatives from the OSCE this week to raise their fears about what they say are systematic efforts to suppress minority voters likely to vote for President Obama.

The Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights, the NAACP and the ACLU, among other groups, warned this month in a letter to Daan Everts, a senior official with OSCE, of “a coordinated political effort to disenfranchise millions of Americans — particularly traditionally disenfranchised groups like minorities.”

Considering Republican voter ID laws are designed to act as additional hoops in order to disenfranchise poor and minority voters, it's nice to know somebody's watching.  44 observers aren't anywhere near enough, but it's a start.  The real issue is getting people informed, and to the polls with that information and identification.

See what efforts are going on where you live to get Souls to the Polls.
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