Monday, May 25, 2015

Last Call For Ugly Duggars

The Duggar family, stars of "19 Kids And Counting", recently taken off the air by TLC after admitted sexual abuse of some of his own sisters by oldest son Josh Duggar, have a lot of allies in their home state of Arkansas. Former GOP governor and 2016 candidate Mike Huckabee defended Josh's sexual abuse last week, calling it "inexcusable but not unforgivable".

Since the GOP's large pro-child molester base wants somebody to pay who's not Josh Duggar, that somebody looks like it will be the police chief who complied with the Freedom of Information request for Josh's record.

A state senator from Northwest Arkansas is calling for the Springdale police chief to be fired over the recent release of a 2006 police report detailing accusations that Josh Duggar as a teenager molested five underage girls.

Sen. Bart Hester, R-Cave Springs, said the girls have been re-victimized now that the report is public. He said Police Chief Kathy O’Kelley acted recklessly in releasing the report and should be held accountable.

“The law to protect minors’ identities is not a suggestion,” Hester, pictured, said Saturday (May 23). “So sad to see the person charged with protecting the community being so reckless and irresponsible. I believe it is unavoidable that the Springdale police chief should be terminated. She has re-victimized these young ladies.”

Springdale Mayor Doug Sprouse said O’Kelley and Springdale City Attorney Ernest Cate determined after researching the matter that the report had to be released under law.

“From every indication I have the chief and city attorney reluctantly did what they had to do to comply with the state FOI (freedom of information) law,” Sprouse said Saturday (May 23).

The Springdale police report was obtained by In Touch Weekly magazine and posted on the magazine’s website this week. The names are redacted in the report. On May 21, Washington County Juvenile Judge Stacey Zimmerman issued a court order that the police report be destroyed and expunged from the public record.

So, to recap, following the law should cost Chief O'Kelley her job, but not following the law should not cost Judge Zimmerman her job.

Oh, but Chief O'Kelley was going to retire at the end of the month anyway.  If she's fired however, she gets no pension.  That's the real issue: punishing her, but not Josh child rapist Dugger.

That's how Republicans roll.

Capitalism Cuts Colleges In Carolina

Last month I mentioned that North Carolina Republicans were trying to eliminate medical programs at the UNC system involving abortion procedures as part of a major new anti-abortion bill.  That bill, HB 465, is currently tied up in the state Senate.  But it looks like the anti-science, anti-choicers have won anyway: massive cuts at the UNC system have prompted the wholesale elimination of dozens of degree programs.

Thursday morning, the Board of Governors educational planning committee voted to discontinue 46 degree programs across the UNC-System, including one at UNC-Chapel Hill: human biology. The entire Board voted Friday to adopt the recommendations voted on by the committee Thursday.

Other schools lost more programs than UNC-CH. East Carolina University and UNC-Greensboro saw eight programs eliminated each.

Junius Gonzales, senior vice president for academic affairs for the UNC-System, led the review of program productivity, which refers to the number of degrees granted in programs annually.

Gonzales said the process was inexact and that it was essential to listen to the thoughts of campus-level officials. He said the frequency of education programs being classified as low productivity due to few majors was an example of a situation where the processes of the UNC system and the interests of the state did not always align.

"This is an art, not a science," he said.

Now, with UNC-Chapel Hill home to the one of the state's best medical schools would the college eliminate the human biology program as a degree?

The Human Biology, Ecology and Evolution Program is interested in the relationships between culture, behavior, and environment and their impacts on health and well-being. This focus is crucial in light of accelerating ecological, economic and socio-political changes such as globalization, market integration and climate change. We ask, for instance, what are the impacts of changing environments on human health, biology and behavior across the lifespan? What factors can foster or undermine ecological and cultural resilience? How do evolutionary and ecological processes shape human variation in the past and present?
Well then.  No wonder it had to go.  Can't teach abortion, can't teach climate change.  Not when the Know Nothings are in charge of my home state. Also getting the axe: several gender studies and African studies programs, because of course:

Board member Steven Long, who is the vice chairman of the academic planning committee, expressed concern about the labels applied to the actions, saying that words like "discontinuation" could confuse the public.

“They think you’re eliminating a lot of the cost, but we’re really only eliminating a little bit of the cost,” Long said. “We’re really not discontinuing the whole program; we’re just scaling it back.”

Long said he didn't think the programs addressed by the report necessarily needed more scrutiny.

We’re capitalists, and we have to look at what the demand is, and we have to respond to the demand.”

We're capitalists, not educators, dammit.

Chest-Beating For Dummies

All the Republican White House hopefuls in 2016 are attacking President Obama's "failed" strategy for dealing with ISIS, but few candidates are offering details about what they would do differently, and the ones that are want to put thousands of US troops back in Iraq.  And none of them can even begin to be taken seriously.

Lindsey Graham and Rick Santorum want to deploy 10,000 American troops in Iraq as part of a coalition with Arab nations against Islamic State militants, and will settle for nothing less than “destroying the caliphate,” in Mr. Graham’s words.

Jeb Bush believes those additional American soldiers would have prevented the Islamic State from gathering strength in recent years. But an American-led force now? “I don’t think that will work,” he said in an interview Friday, his latest sign of wariness at the prospect of becoming the third President Bush to dispatch ground troops to the Middle East.

Marco Rubio describes his strategy against the Islamic State with a line from the action movie “Taken” — “we will look for you, we will find you, and we will kill you” — yet he is more inclined to provide “the most devastating air support possible” rather than send in American troops.Scott Walker and Rick Perry are more open to a combat mission, while Rand Paul wants boots on the ground — as long as they are “Arab boots on the ground.”

Naturally, this is the biggest problem for Jeb Bush.

Mr. Bush is among the most elusive. At times he sounds bellicose: “Restrain them, tighten the noose, and then taking them out is the strategy” against the Islamic State, he said in February. The next monthhe endorsed creating “a protected zone in northeast Syria where you could allow for an army to be built, both a Syrian free army and international soldiers with air power from the United States.” Yet Mr. Bush has not laid out substantive details for such aggressive actions.

At other times, he sounds uncertain: He recently floundered for days about whether he would have invaded Iraq in 2003 — and then found himself defending President George W. Bush, his brother, from a college student’s charge that he “created” the Islamic State by disbanding Saddam Hussein’s powerful army.

As for the role of American ground troops in the Middle East, Mr. Bush was more ambiguous than adamant last week.
“Whether we need more than 3,000, which is what we have now, I would base that on what the military advisers say,” Mr. Bush said Wednesday in New Hampshire. On Friday, after a speech in Oklahoma City, he said former military officials had told him that American forces “should embed in the Iraqi military.”

“The Canadians and French do,” he continued, “but we’re prohibited. That’s just remarkable.”

So no, Jeb doesn't have any clue what we should be doing in Iraq right now.  And he'll just change his mind and flip-flop another 50 times between now and November 2016.

None of the Republicans have anything more than movie quotes and scary rhetoric.

StupidiNews, Memorial Day Edition!

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