Friday, August 23, 2013

Last Call For The Last Train To Cobbsville

And it's leaving Racist Station, you can be there at 4:30, but I'd get a reservation.

A man living in North Dakota plans to turn his small town into a bastion of white supremacists, according to the Southern Poverty Law Center.

“I didn’t have a clue who the guy was until he showed up. All I know is he bought that house sight unseen, $5,000 cash, and had no idea what it looked like, where it was, other than he knew the directions to get to Leith,” Mayor Ryan Schock told the Hatewatch blog.

Craig Paul Cobb, 61, has been buying up abandoned property in Leith, a town of only 19 people. He has invited other white supremacists to live on his properties and help take over the city.

In a post last year on the Vanguard News Network forum, Cobb said anyone who lives on his property would be required to fly a “racialist banner” — such as a Nazi flag — 24-hours a day. They would also be required to try to “import more responsible radical hard core [white nationalists]” and become a legal resident of the state so they could vote in local elections. He plans to rename the city “Cobbsville.”

“Imagine strolling over to your neighbors to discuss world politics with nearly all like-minded volk. Imagine the international publicity and usefulness to our cause! For starters, we could declare a Mexican illegal invaders and Israeli Mossad/IDF spies no-go zone. If leftist journalists or antis come and try to make trouble, they just might break one of our local ordinances and would have to be arrested by our town constable. See?” he wrote.

Cobb has even built a concrete prison, where he plans to “lock up recalcitrant journalists and lefty commies who violate the codes or peace of the community.”

Sounds like a happening town for all your extremely Aryan, goosestepping buddies who need somewhere to hang their SS hats after a long day of hating everyone who's not them.  Perhaps someone should inform Chief Justice Roberts that Craig Paul Cobb here didn't get the memo that racism in America was over when the court's conservatives struck down Section 4 of the no longer necessary Voting Rights Act.

The plan to turn Leigh into a white supremacist paradise has the town’s only black resident understandably worried.

“The more the word gets out, the better chance that we can move him out. People are welcome if they’re here to improve our community, but they’re here to bring hate,” Bobby Harper told The Bismarck Tribune.

Yeah, I'd be understandably worried too.

Professor Obama's Higher Education Plan

President Obama yesterday unveiled his plan for containing college costs, and as Ezra Klein notes, it's applying Obamacare's "bend the cost curve down" theory to college tuition inflation.

The core of President Obama’s plan to cut higher-ed costs is “pay-for-performance.” The idea is to use federal financial aid to move colleges away from the current pay-for-enrollment model and toward a model in which they make more money if they graduate more students, hold tuition costs down, etc. (This is, in a sense, bringing the cost-control theories of Obamacare to the higher-ed sector.)

So how does it work?

The fact sheet is pretty clear on this: “Before the 2015 school year, the Department of Education will develop a new ratings system to help students compare the value offered by colleges and encourage colleges to improve.” Look ma! No Congress!

Linking the new ratings system to financial aid does require congressional action. But it doesn’t come till much later. “The President will seek legislation allocating financial aid based upon these college ratings by 2018, once the ratings system is well established,” the fact sheet continues. That’s two years after the end of Obama’s second term. That means that even if Obama did get legislation passed to link aid to performance, the law could be altered or undone by the next president before it even went into effect.

So what Obama is really promising to get done in his second term is to create the infrastructure necessary for a pay-for-performance system: the definition of performance and the routine collection of the underlying data. He doesn’t need Congress for that. When that’s are done, Obama can try to get legislation passed through Congress to tie them to financial aid by 2018. But even if he fails, he will have set the next president up to finish the job, as the technically hardest and most time-consuming task will be complete.

Seems like a good plan to me, especially when the big losers in the plan are those profiting off of college loans.  Going to a pay-for-performance, "Race To The Top" program approach puts the responsibility on colleges, universities, grad schools and trade school to turn out people who actually graduate, not drop out.

Naturally, Republicans are going to trash the plan.  And as usual, they've got nothing better.

A High Stakes Game Of Texas Hold 'Em

Texas GOP Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst apparently has a no problem with Texas Hold 'Em...especially when the person being "held" is his niece, in Collins County, for shoplifting.  He's got no problem going all in when it comes to throwing his weight around.

Texas Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst (R) reportedly called 911 when a relative was in jail and tried to use his influence to convince officials to release her. According to CBS Dallas-Ft. Worth, Dewhurst made the call on August 3, four hours after his niece was arrested for shoplifting at an Allen, TX Kroger grocery store.

“This is David Dewhurst, the Lieutenant Governor of the State of Texas, and I want to talk to your senior officer who is there at your department right now,” Dewhurst said at the beginning of the call.

When the Republican got a police sergeant on the phone, he proceeded to insist that his niece, Ellen Bevers, is “the sweetest person in the world,” and that she should be released as quickly as possible.

What I would like to do is if you would explain to me, sergeant, what I would need to do to arrange for getting her out of jail this evening,” he said. “You can proceed with whatever you think is proper.”

Allen police say they handled the case just as they would any other case of a relative calling about an inmate. The sergeant on duty explained that Bevers was charged with a Class B misdemeanor and would be transferred to the Collin County Sheriff’s Office for arraignment.

Yeah, you're a precinct sarge, and the Lieutenant Governor calls YOU up and says he wants to get his niece out of the pokey ASAP for a shoplifting charge.  Whatever YOU think is proper.  The cops played it by the book, apparently.

A spokesperson for the Allen Police Department, Sgt. John Felty, said that neither his department nor the lieutenant governor did anything wrong, “He didn’t threaten anybody. He didn’t demand anything. He didn’t ask for anything that was above and beyond what a normal citizen would.”

Dewhurst’s office released a statement that said, “David acted as a concerned family member in an attempt to acquire information on how to post bail for his niece while reiterating multiple times in the full conversation that law-enforcement follow their normal protocols and procedures.”

Sure.  Except this "normal citizen" asking for "normal procedures" happens to be the Lieutenant Governor of Texas.  Maybe what Dewhurst did was legal,but it sure as hell wasn't moral.


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