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I'm not kidding, neither. Don't click on this with liquid in your mouth, especially milk. I'm cleaning the coffee off the monitor as we speak. Then again, I have a decidedly bent sense of humor. Better with the sound turned up. About 500 mb dl.
25 years after his victims assumed room temperature, Crips founder Tookie Williams was executed early this morning at San Quentin.
After he was declared dead, his supporters shouted in unison: "The state of California just killed an innocent man," as they walked out of the chamber.
I don't think so. The morality of the death peanlty may be open to question but death penalty opponents aren't scoring any points with idiotic pronouncements like this. Story here.
Swapping out a death sentence for life in the can is a tough sell anyway given that most people know full well that a life sentence is relatively elastic and often meaningless.
TWC's favorite example, William Suff, is one of the most prolific mass murders in American history. Released by those tough guys at Texas DPS a decade into a seventy year sentence for the brutal murder of his infant daughter, he's currently residing on death row at San Quentin for killing a multitude of women in and around my town.
Maybe those DPS boys that paroled his sorry ass ought to be standing tall right next to him. Hey, it doesn't interest me much that he was a model prisoner. What interests me is this: That baby doesn't breath anymore. And now, thanks to Texas DPS, a whole bunch of other people have contracted the same affliction. Good thing Texas has that tough-on-crime reputation.
For those of you in the northeast, Mrs TWC and possibly her cohort, Shikha Dalmia (live from India), are re-scheduled to appear on John Batchelor's talk show around 9:30 8:00 pm EST (12-13-05) on Boston's WRKO. The main goal is Meathead bashing so it may be fun. Thanks for your interest.
The Project From Hell has sucked up most of this gorgeous weekend so I plan to ruin your day too with this depressing tale. As you may well know, there is no such thing as justice (civil or criminal) in the US but this, my friends, is Dean Koontz meets the Twilight Zone.
Let's summarize: Cops mistakenly break down the door of a sleeping man, late at night, as part of drug raid. Turns out, the man wasn't named in the warrant, and wasn't a suspect. The man, frigthened for himself and his 18-month old daughter, fires at an intruder who jumps into his bedroom after the door's been kicked in. Turns out that the man, who is black, has killed the white son of the town's police chief. He's later convicted and sentenced to death by a white jury.
Sounds a lot like self-defense to me so I'm a little fuzzy on why charges were brought in the first place.
Just another victim of the War on the Bill of Rights, er, ah War on Drugs. For some inexplicable reason Americans are obsessed with stopping illicit drug use. Nobody has caught on that the cause is futile. We've long ago flushed our financial privacy, most of our rights, and untold billions of dollars all in the name of preventing people that are apparently bent on self-destruction from accomplishing their goal.
Here's a Heads Up: The plan ain't been working too well and frankly, my rights are more important than some junkie's collapsed veins. And that's not even getting to the question of whose body it is anyway. Is keeping my ex-neighbor off crank worth a dead cop or the life of the innocent victim waiting for execution?
This PowerPoint presentation amply illustrates the differences between pub clientele of Stockholm and pub clientele of Newcastle. Although we can draw our conclusions, I suspect that this is more amusing when viewed within a cultural context that we Yanks are unfamiliar with.
Rated PG. No nudity but this is definitely racy. May offend those with delicate sensibilities or refined tastes. You probably won't share this with your pastor or your third grader.
Shikha and Mrs TWC nailed that Meathead guy once again this morning in the Wall Street Journal. If you're a subscriber you can read it online here. If you're not, Mrs TWC has it on her blog, Education Weak.
LOS ANGELES -- Celebrities with a social conscience are a growing breed in Hollywood. But it would be nice if they'd stick to whales and landmines and leave our children alone.
Unfortunately, California parents have no such luck. Movie-director-turned-child-advocate Rob Reiner recently acquired a million signatures to put his Preschool for All initiative on the California ballot next June, his second attempt to launch a "universal" preschool program.
If enacted, it will bump the state's top tax rate to 12% in exchange for offering three hours a day of child care for 36 weeks a year. Frankly, I don't see how that justifies spending billions of dollars on a new program that only stay-at-home moms needing some downtime can avail themselves of. Most working people need child care all day, all year. More here.
But the people most dreading Mr. Reiner's latest foray are not the super-rich, who would no doubt find ways to dodge -- by moving out of the state if necessary -- what would effectively be a 19% increase in their tax rate. The real victims would be low- to middle-income women who run nearly all private early-care centers that comprise 70% of California's child-care industry.
Beyond that, it would hand over the state's pre-schoolers to the governmental educational establishment that is...
...run by teachers with precisely the kind of fancy education degrees drawing union wages that Mr. Reiner wants in preschools. California's fourth graders' reading and math scores are 47th among the 50 states on national tests. Furthermore, a study by the Rand Corporation this year found California's children trailing on every objective measurement of student achievement -- even after controlling for its disproportionate number of low-income, minority kids.
Lots more to say, but TWC is dangerously close to straying away from the primary tax analysis of this measure, which justifies this screed in the first place. Okay so I'm so far off the beaten path I'll need a sack lunch and a sleeping bag to get back over there. I'm sorry, but the coming wholesale decimation of an entire private sector industry that was largely created by entrepreneurial women, many of whom are minorities that found a market niche, and many who also serve minority communities, leaves me with a bad taste in my mouth.