“The problem of radicalized surveillance is particularly pronounced in Baltimore,” the complaint stated. The city was already on the defensive, even as the aerial surveillance program was shielded from the public eye.

Bloomberg reports on an aerial surveillance system quietly flying daily over Baltimore–without the public’s knowledge. This kind of thing is chilling.

Date posted: August 24, 2016 | Filed under Baltimore, politics, shortlinks | Leave a Comment »

In the end, the exploitation of anti-government sentiment by Republican leaders, and the active efforts on their part to make all government look corrupt and illegitimate, reached its logical conclusion. The Republican political establishment looked no less corrupt, weak, and illegitimate than the Democratic one, and the appeal of a rank outsider became greater.

Norman J. Ornstein and Thomas E. Mann do a great job of analyzing the overall Republican strategy of the last 30 years, and how it begat Trump as their candidate.

Date posted: July 22, 2016 | Filed under politics | Leave a Comment »

So Melania Trump lifted whole sentences from Michelle Obama’s 2008 speech last night. The thing that annoys me so much about this is that I’ve got to go back to teach in the fall and tell students that it’s illegal and immoral to plagiarize. These assclowns don’t see any problem with it.

Date posted: July 19, 2016 | Filed under politics, shortlinks | Leave a Comment »

When Trump assures us he’ll do for the United States what he’s done for his businesses, that’s not a promise — it’s a threat. The tactics he has used in running his business wouldn’t work in running a truly successful company, let alone the most powerful nation on Earth.

Henry Paulson, the Republican Treasury Secretary who helped guide the country out of the 2008 meltdown, takes on Donald Trump in the Washington Post.

Date posted: June 26, 2016 | Filed under politics, shortlinks | Leave a Comment »

People say that Trump is an unconventional candidate and that he represents a break from politics as usual. That’s not true. Trump is the culmination of the trends we have been seeing for the last 30 years: the desire for outsiders; the bashing style of rhetoric that makes conversation impossible; the decline of coherent political parties…

Source: The Governing Cancer of Our Time, from The New York Times

Date posted: February 28, 2016 | Filed under politics, shortlinks | Leave a Comment »

In a surprise move, a Texas grand jury investigating Planned Parenthood wrapped up on Monday by issuing several indictments not to the women’s healthcare provider, but to two of the anti-abortion activists who had prompted the investigation.

Ha ha ha ha ha FUCK YOU. I’m so glad truth won out over obvious bullshit.

Date posted: January 26, 2016 | Filed under politics, shortlinks | Leave a Comment »

…Many of the people who lack insurance in states with a lot of uninsured people are effectively unable to benefit from Obamacare programs because of their low incomes and local politicians’ decisions to forgo Medicaid expansion.

Source: We Mapped the Uninsured. You’ll Notice a Pattern. – The New York Times

Date posted: November 2, 2015 | Filed under politics, shortlinks | Leave a Comment »

While I’m very happy with the new Pope and a lot of the stands he’s made, this one bums me out: He met with Kim Davis, the Kentucky clerk who denied gay couples marriage licenses. While this is nice of him, it lends her a lot of undeserved credibility.

The pope said that he could not speak specifically about cases but that “conscientious objection is a right that is a part of every human right.”

I support anyone’s right to conscientious objection. But she’s an officer of the court, which means she does not make the laws, she upholds them. It is her sworn duty to issue marriage licenses under Kentucky law. If she can’t do her duty, she must step down from office.

And, just to be clear: Fuck Kim Davis.

Date posted: September 30, 2015 | Filed under politics, shortlinks | Leave a Comment »

In a rare bit of good news, the Supreme Court ruled on two huge cases this week.

The best of the two is that they ruled in favor of same sex marriage nationwide, which is so huge and overdue and fair and right, that it restores a little bit of my faith in the creaking, rotted system we call our own. It’s about fucking time we extend unalienable rights to everybody.

They also ruled that federal tax credits are good in all 50 states, thereby striking down another challenge to the Affordable Care Act. While I’m not shocked that half the government has been trying to dismantle it, it’s reassuring that voices of reason have stood up for it.

Please, let this be the beginning of some positive momentum.

Date posted: June 26, 2015 | Filed under politics | Leave a Comment »

I’ve just described for you the culture of the Baltimore police department amid the deluge of the drug war, where actual investigation goes unrewarded and where rounding up bodies for street dealing, drug possession, loitering such – the easiest and most self-evident arrests a cop can make – is nonetheless the path to enlightenment and promotion and some additional pay.

Source: David Simon on Baltimore’s Anguish

Date posted: April 30, 2015 | Filed under Baltimore, politics, shortlinks | Leave a Comment »