Monday Reads: In Other News

dancing-skeletonsHappy Halloween!

I thought I’d cover a few interesting stories in lieu of dragging too much of this crazy election into your feeds.  I thought I’d first focus on some interesting women’s news since we’re about to shatter the ultimate glass ceiling here in the USA.  Bill Moyers recommends this study by the VERA Justice Institute on Women and Jails in an era of reform.

Since 1970, there has been a nearly five-fold increase in the number of people in U.S. jails—the approximately 3,000 county or municipality-run detention facilities that primarily hold people arrested but not yet convicted of a crime. Despite recent scrutiny from policymakers and the public, one aspect of this growth has received little attention: the shocking rise in the number of women in jail.

Women in jail are the fastest growing correctional population in the country—increasing 14-fold between 1970 and 2014. Yet there is surprisingly little research on why so many more women wind up in jail today. This report examines what research does exist on women in jail in order to begin to reframe the conversation to include them. It offers a portrait of women in jail, explores how jail can deepen the societal disadvantages they face, and provides insight into what drives women’s incarceration and ways to reverse the trend.

largeReuters reports that Abortion by prescription is now used as much as surgical prescriptions.  What does this mean to our right to privacy and protection of our constitutional right to decide for ourselves?

American women are ending pregnancies with medication almost as often as with surgery, marking a turning point for abortion in the United States, data reviewed by Reuters shows.

The watershed comes amid an overall decline in abortion, a choice that remains politically charged in the United States, sparking a fiery exchange in the final debate between presidential nominees Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump.

When the two medications used to induce abortion won U.S. approval 16 years ago, the method was expected to quickly overtake the surgical option, as it has in much of Europe. But U.S. abortion opponents persuaded lawmakers in many states to put restrictions on their use.

Although many limitations remain, innovative dispensing efforts in some states, restricted access to surgical abortions in others and greater awareness boosted medication abortions to 43 percent of pregnancy terminations at Planned Parenthood clinics, the nation’s single largest provider, in 2014, up from 35 percent in 2010, according to previously unreported figures from the nonprofit.

Jonathan Chait–writing for NYMag–begins the dissection of what this dose of authoritarianism we’ve seen this year means for the future of the GOP.

Approaching the 2016 election from this historical perspective, in which Trump’s every boast, tweet, and threat disappears into the ether, may at first blush sound like a relief. It is the opposite. Trump is an extreme event, but Trumpism is no fluke. Its weaknesses are fleeting, and its strengths likely to endure. Far from an organization that is “probably headed toward a civil war” — as the Washington Post recently put it, summing up a rapidly congealing consensus — the Republican Party is instead more unified than one might imagine, as well as more dangerous. The accommodations its leaders have made to their erratic and delirious nominee underscore a capacity to go further and lower to maintain their grip on power than anybody understood. More consequentially, the horrors Trump has unleashed are the product of tectonic forces in American politics. Trump has revealed the convergence of two movements more extreme than anything in the free world that may yet threaten the democratic character most Americans take as their birthright.

h8We’ve not only seen a pungent form of authoritarianism but we’ve also seen racism and misogyny on levels that are hard to take.  An autistic, black young teen accidentally veered off a race in NY and was treated to nightmare.

Chase Coleman, an autistic ninth-grader at Corcoran High School, was running in a cross country race in Rochester when a middle-aged stranger attacked him.

The man got out of his car, shoved Chase down in the road and yelled “get out of here” before driving off, according to witnesses.

A few days after the Oct. 14 incident, the nonverbal 15-year-old runner handed his uniform back to his coach and quit the team.

Now Chase’s mother, Clarise Coleman, wants to know why Rochester authorities refuse to press charges against the man who admitted pushing Chase.

She fears the answer is this: Chase is black and disabled, and his attacker was white.

Whatever the reason, 57-year-old Martin MacDonald of suburban Pittsford was not charged. Rochester City Court Judge Caroline Morrison denied a requested arrest warrant charging MacDonald for second-degree harassment, despite Coleman’s desire to press charges.

The harassment charge is only a violation, with a maximum jail sentence of 15 days. But Coleman is outraged that authorities won’t seek at least that much justice for her son.

“If that man had been black and Chase had been white, and that (police) report went in, he’d have been in jail,” she said.

We’ve got our own Nightmare before Halloween here in Sabine Parish, Louisiana.  The KKK is actively getting out the vote.  This is from Lamar White, Jr. and his blog CenLamar.images

Shortly before midnight on Saturday, Oct. 29, 2016, members of the largest white supremacist hate group in the country, the Loyal White Knights of the Ku Klux Klan, distributed small zip-locked packets on the windshields of vehicles parked along the sleepy streets and in the driveways of Many, Louisiana.

Many, the seat of Sabine Parish, is a tiny town of less than 3,000 residents tucked away in the farthest corner of West Central Louisiana, within shouting distance of the Texas border.

According to the most recent Census, the town’s racial demographics are split almost evenly: 48.18% white and 47.42% African-American, and their most famous hometown hero is Charlie Joiner, an African-American and a record-breaking NFL wide receiver who was inducted into pro-football’s Hall of Fame and who was once praised by Coach Bill Walsh as “the most intelligent, the smartest, the most calculating receiver the game has ever known.”

Two days ago, members of a Ku Klux Klan organization (it’s not worth using the adjective “fringe,” because all KKK groups deliberately embrace their fringe identities) targeted Charlie Joiner’s hometown and, during the dead of the night, distributed these packets, according to multiple sources in Many and in the surrounding area:

Some highly inappropriate Halloween costumes have been rocking universities this weekend. An Arkansas college student was expelled over a black-face Bill Cosby costume.   Fans at a football game between Wisconsin and Nebraska used lynching to display their dislike of Clinton and the President Obama and support of Trump.  That was extremely appalling.

Wisconsin hosted Nebraska in Madison on Saturday night. In the stands at Camp Randall Stadium, one fan dressed in a Donald Trump mask, and that fan’s companion dressed in two masks: one for Hillary Clinton, one for President Obama.

The fan in the Trump mask appears to have depicted himself lynching his partner in the Obama and Clinton masks.

This election year seriously needs to be over ASAP.

Here’s some links for those of you interested in following the latest hooplah with the FBI and the bomb thrown by Senator Harry Reid yesterday.

From Politico: Poll: Comey’s bombshell changes few votes vintage-halloween-postcard-image-graphicsfairy

The race for the White House is tight, but it has not been radically changed by the FBI director’s bombshell announcement last week.  —  Hillary Clinton has a slim three-point lead over Donald Trump one week before Election Day …

From  An open letter from Former Prosecutors and other high ranking Justice officials.

It is out of our respect for such settled tenets of the United States Department of Justice that we are moved to express our concern with the recent letter issued by FBI Director James Comey to eight Congressional Committees.  Many of us have worked with Director Comey; all of us respect him.  But his unprecedented decision to publicly comment on evidence in what may be an ongoing inquiry just eleven days before a presidential election leaves us both astonished and perplexed. We cannot recall a prior instance where a senior Justice Department official—Republican or Democrat—has, on the eve of a major election, issued a public statement where the mere disclosure of information may impact the election’s outcome, yet the official acknowledges the information to be examined may not be significant or new.

Director Comey’s letter is inconsistent with prevailing Department policy, and it breaks with longstanding practices followed by officials of both parties during past elections.  Moreover, setting aside whether Director Comey’s original statements in July were warranted, by failing to responsibly supplement the public record with any substantive, explanatory information, his letter begs the question that further commentary was necessary.

From The Hill :  Reid: FBI has ‘explosive information’ about Trump, Russia

Harry Reid is alleging that the FBI has “explosive information” about a connection between Donald Trump  —  and the Russian government, suggesting that federal investigators have unveiled damning new information about the Republican presidential nominee.

I’m sure there’s a lot to be said still about all of this and the details coming out from the victim who alleges Trump raped her at 13.   

Remember, tis the season for Nasty women!  And Nasty women vote!!  Bad Hombres need to vote too!!!!

What’s on your reading and blogging list today?

87 Comments on “Monday Reads: In Other News”

  1. bostonboomer says:

    Here’s the KKK poster with misspelling:


  2. bostonboomer says:

    Anyone who works for Trump should demand payment upfront.

    WaPo: Donald Trump is refusing to pay his campaign pollster three-quarters of a million dollars.

  3. bostonboomer says:

    IMHO, the best article on the Comey mess is this one from Riley Roberts:

    The Very Political James Comey

    If you haven’t read his previous article from September, please do: The Case Against James Comey.

    • dakinikat says:

      Read this earlier at your suggestion. Really is a good read.

    • janicen says:

      This is something that had not occurred to me at the time but now seems so obvious, it wasn’t for the FBI to decide whether or not to charge Clinton back in July. All the FBI is supposed to do is investigate and then refer their findings to a prosecutor. Then the prosecutor decides whether nor not to proceed.

      In early July, when the investigation reached its (initial) conclusion, Comey called an extraordinary news conference to opine, before the national media, on the Democratic nominee’s “extremely careless” conduct—even as he insisted that “no reasonable prosecutor” would file charges against her. The fact that no prosecutor had been consulted was, for Comey, a point of pride—evidence, he thought, of his independence, rather than his brazen disregard for Justice Department rules (which dictated that a senior DOJ official, not the FBI director, should have had the final say).

      • bostonboomer says:

        That’s right. Loretta Lynch had said she would go along with the FBI’s decision, but Comey had no right to make those comments or announce the recommendation. He went rogue long ago.

    • Fannie says:

      Thank you BB…these are great articles, and gives more insight to Comey. All I can think of is “Trump and his Chill Winds of Delivery for Putin”…………..

      I really think he did this because Hillary Clinton is a woman, and he isn’t going to have a female head the affairs of this country.

    • Fannie says:

      I didn’t know that after he left Bush, he became the Senior Vice Pres. for the biggest US defense contractor, Lockheed Martin, in Maryland (2005). He also was a member of the Board of Directors for HSBC, one of the biggest British banking, with assets of 2.67 trillion dollars. I think there was some big compliance settlement involving 1.9 million dollars.

      He had some good things going, but there appears to be some red flags up too. All of this was on his wiki page.

  4. ANonOMouse says:

    Here’s the pole I’d send them to.

  5. NW Luna says:

    Office of Special Counsel received complaint against Comey and says ‘in general’ it opens cases into allegations of interfering with elections. …..

    Should the OSC find Comey to have violated the Hatch Act, the relevant law determining any potential punishment for a Senate-confirmed presidential appointee – such as Comey – places authority for that decision with the president. Should Clinton win the presidency, she may find herself in a position to determine what the law calls “appropriate action” for an FBI director who is slated to serve until 2023.

  6. Pat Johnson says:

    My fear is that Comie has just handed this election to Trump. We supporters may see his actions for what they are but there are those who won’t bother to vote at all based on the premise of “the lesser of two evils”.

    Since Friday it has been nothing but the”e-mails” and little about the egregiousness of Trump. Three days so far of nonstop coverage of innuendos and assumptions based on never ending witch hunts.

    I seriously fear the outcome to this hateful race and between voter suppression and voter indifference next Tuesday will almost guarantee a Trump victory from which we may never recover.

    Comie has compromised this election to such a degree that it is causing me to lose sleep.

    • dakinikat says:

      I think it’s impact will not help Trump. I think it was made to GOTV republican vote and to see if they could get voters to split tickets so they could continue control of Congress. We have to take the senate or they will hound Hilary from day one.

    • Enheduanna says:

      Have faith Pat! Hillary’s GOT this – she’s leading by a huge margin. Those emails aren’t even hers – it’s a gigantic nothingburger and people are sick of being played like this.

    • bostonboomer says:

      Trump has no path to 270. So far the polls show no effect on the race. I think this is going to energize Clinton voters.

  7. Pat Johnson says:

    Last week it appeared as though Hillary had this “in the bag”. Today it appears that she has lost ground. The advantage goes to Trump.

    The press wants a “horse race”. The GOP wants blood. The millennials seem to be the key demographic and have been raised on “she cannot be trusted”. Their defection leaves her vulnerable against these “allegations”.

    Her core constituency – us – have her back. What is troubling is that enough drumbeating so close to the election will convince the skeptics to stay home which can drive down her lead and allow his to surface.

    He may never overcome the 40% but she could slide beneath that number if the millennials switch over to Johnson or Stein as a “protest vote” thus eroding her lead further.

    They keep harping on her unlikability and trustworthiness so often that some of that is bound to stick.

    Bill Clinton only won the first time with 43% of the vote. In a 4 way race that may be all Trump needs.

    I am scared.

    • littleisis says:

      I’m scared sh*tless. And then this gen dropped on my feed. Donna Brazile Appears To Have Sent CNN Debate Question To Clinton Campaign
      Donna is at it again! You know, I trust Hillary and I believe she is honest, but no doubt she will be blamed for this.

    • ANonOMouse says:

      Y’all are getting too nervous. Remember 2012? Remember how the polls had Obama and Romney neck-in-neck or within 3-4 in the last week? Remember how the polls all underestimated the Democratic vote by not polling correctly? Remember how the polls went up and down? Remember how the Republicans “unskewed the polls” that were 3-4 to tell them that Romney was “really winning”? This election will be no different.

      I’m not nervous and haven’t been since the GE began. I know that Hillary’s internal polling is much more accurate than any polls we’ve seen and that she will work her butt off down to the wire to make sure she wins this. She has a great ground game, great GOTV teams. It’s going to be close, but not any closer than Obama-Romney.

      • bostonboomer says:

        Agree. As Al Giordano said in his newsletter this morning, stop chicken-littleing. The Obama coalition has got this. And don’t forget that Hillary is tough as nails!!

        • littleisis says:

          Thanks ladies!!! 😌

          • ANonOMouse says:

            Just don’t worry. All we can do is vote and work for Hillary, the rest I put in the Hands of Hillary and her Team who I trust to win this election. The GOP tried to tar & feather Obama in the 2012 election with the Birth Certificate issue and remember who led that Donald Trump led that effort on behalf of the Teaparty. They tried to tank him with ObamaCare, the pullout in Iraq, the Egyptian Revolution in 2011, the Economy, Jobs. They tied up every program Obama offered between 2010 and 2012. They called Obama a secret Muslim, accused him of being a covert agent of Islamic Extremists, they had Tea Party rallies on the steps of the U.S. Capitol, in front of the Lincoln Memorial, BUT STILL WE WON! We will win again and we may even win some Red States in the process.

      • janicen says:

        I agree. Like the President said, “Don’t boo, vote!” Don’t worry, don’t fret, VOTE!!!! We got this.

  8. palhart says:

    Chait says what I was slowly coming to believe: the Republican Party will continue to go further and lower to grab power. They will continue along this path of racism, misogynistic, anti-everything decent and holy. Harry Reid stood up; I was happy to read. There has to be many more on talk shows and in columns standing strong against the most anti-democratic and -American Republican trends and presidential nominee of my lifetime. I’ve built a wall around my thoughts and emotions and will not contemplate a Trump win. After Hillary wins, there is the threat that the pointed headed Hillary-haters will continue their investigations ad nauseam. We have to stand with her and for her in order for her to have some calm to set forth her plans, policies, and Cabinet. We must endure and persist. She’s won the presidency for us and all decent, civil, and hopeful Americans.

  9. bostonboomer says:

    Rolling Stone:

    How the Hillary Clinton Outrage Cycle Took Over the Media

  10. bostonboomer says:

    Make sure you’re sitting down.

    Comey didn’t want to announce that the Russians were the ones hacking Democrats because of the election–and that was a long time ago!!

    • janicen says:

      Oh, FFS!

    • palhart says:

      Comey and his staff/investigators have to pre-election day to get a “read” on these new e-mails, preferably sooner than later, and he should reveal their conclusion, which I’m assuming is “nothing found here.” He should apologize to Hillary Clinton and resign before inaugural day.

      • bostonboomer says:

        He should be taken off the case and resign in disgrace immediately.

        • NW Luna says:

          And not be allowed to clean out his office. Just led to the door and given the boot. What a devious conniving POS.

          • palhart says:

            Good luck with Obama doing anything immediately as he believes Comey is a man of integrity, a man of principles. He doesn’t believe Comey was strategizing to capitulate to the Republicans and interfere with the election outcome. It may take a couple of weeks for those two to agree that Comey’s resignation is the only outcome.

          • bostonboomer says:

            Obama can’t do anything. This isn’t about him. Comey will have to be hounded into resigning.

        • Fannie says:

          I agree. His employees have signed a petition. They aren’t supporting him.

    • Fannie says:

      Yes, the sonuvabitch.

  11. vger says:

    HRC volunteer came by today. Felt good to tell her the entire family is for Hill!

  12. contrask says:

    You guys are my anchor! I am barely breathing after this crappy Comey charade. I’m so glad you put a post up and are mostly positive. I can’t stand to read the CNN stuff – what I chicken little I am.

  13. bostonboomer says:


  14. polculture says:

    David Corn, who broke the story of Romney’s 47% speech, has a brand new story that may be the biggest of all. This is apparently want Harry Reid was referring to when he talked about Trump’s Russia connections under investigation.

    Here’s an excerpt:

    Mother Jones has reviewed that report and other memos this former spy wrote. The first memo, based on the former intelligence officer’s conversations with Russian sources, noted, “Russian regime has been cultivating, supporting and assisting TRUMP for at least 5 years. Aim, endorsed by PUTIN, has been to encourage splits and divisions in western alliance.” It maintained that Trump “and his inner circle have accepted a regular flow of intelligence from the Kremlin, including on his Democratic and other political rivals.” It claimed that Russian intelligence had “compromised” Trump during his visits to Moscow and could “blackmail him.” It also reported that Russian intelligence had compiled a dossier on Hillary Clinton based on “bugged conversations she had on various visits to Russia and intercepted phone calls.”

    The former intelligence officer says the response from the FBI was “shock and horror.” The FBI, after receiving the first memo, did not immediately request additional material, according to the former intelligence officer and his American associates. Yet in August, they say, the FBI asked him for all information in his possession and for him to explain how the material had been gathered and to identify his sources. The former spy forwarded to the bureau several memos—some of which referred to members of Trump’s inner circle.

  15. janicen says:

    Jeebus, shit is blowing the fuck up. See polculture’s link above and the story bb right before that is explained in detail here:

    • quixote says:

      Yep. That’s the link bb posted at 4:52. Mindboggling stuff. It looks like Trump had a secret mail server to communicate with that Russian bank (Alfa).

      Put that together with the business about the Russians being his only source of credit after he bankrupted all his businesses, and it sure looks like there’s some kind of leash there.


      • quixote says:

        Quoting Paul Vixie in that article. Paul freakin Vixie.

        Earlier this month, the group of computer scientists passed the logs to Paul Vixie. In the world of DNS experts, there’s no higher authority. Vixie wrote central strands of the DNS code that makes the internet work. After studying the logs, he concluded, “The parties were communicating in a secretive fashion. The operative word is secretive. This is more akin to what criminal syndicates do if they are putting together a project.” Put differently, the logs suggested that Trump and Alfa had configured something like a digital hotline connecting the two entities, shutting out the rest of the world, and designed to obscure its own existence. Over the summer, the scientists observed the communications trail from a distance.

      • janicen says:

        Sorry, I didn’t mean to repeat a link. I was looking at a different post of bb’s, but thank you for minding things and keeping me straight.

        • quixote says:

          (I didn’t mean it was an issue. Now I’m waiting for this to be all over the news. You know, like other important stuff. Like when Clinton has a cough.)

  16. Minkoff Minx says:

    The comments in this post are excellent

  17. William says:

    I alternate between feeling pretty confident, and becoming very concerned. The polls show some good, some worrisome. If I can be convinced that the email nonsense has not moved anything, then I think we are in good shape. But I’m not convinced as to that. The media refuses to tell the “story” correctly, for whatever nefarious reasons. It’s almost like playing in a poker game where you know there is cheating going on; you’re not quite sure how many players are cheating, and how exactly they’re doing it, but you sense that it is a rigged game. And since Trump either deliberately or psychotically projects everything, one can be sure that there is all sorts of rigging going on in his favor. There are a number of very damaging Trump stories sitting out there, which the media consistently and deliberately ignores in favor of talking endlessly about emails. Is that just stupidity, or awful journalism skills? Or are they doing it very calculatedly, and with orders from their employers? It can’t just be coincidence. And if it were just bad journalism, it would sort of even out, but it never does.

    As to the FBI, they are either corrupt, or such right-wing extremists, that many of them would rather have Russia take over this country, than see Hillary win. If you can’t trust law enforcement, or the media, what is left to stop the evil forces? We obviously desperately need Hillary to win. And we really do need the Senate, too, or they’ll simply endlessly investigate her in the House, maybe even impeach her, just because they have the votes; while she cannot get any bills through, and probably can’t even get any judges, much less Justices, approved. And of course those very thoughts are what the Extreme Right wants to plant in people’s minds, that since Hillary won’t be allowed to govern, they should vote for their candidate. This is the “resistance is futile” line of argument. So we must just hope that the voter suppression going on does not succeed; that the voting machines are not hacked; that the FBI doesn’t make things even worse; that the media will take a brief breath from their desperate addiction to the phony email saga; so that enough sane and reasonable people get to cast a rational vote.

    • janicen says:

      If, when you refer to the “media” you mean television news, I think the answer is that they don’t need to do any real journalism. I read recently that CNN has made $1 billion over this election cycle, MSNBC had made upwards of $300 m. Why should they spend money on real journalists? I am encouraged by the print journalists who have stepped up, Farenthold, Eichenwald, etc. We haven’t seen this kind of investigative reporting in this country in a long time. Change is incremental, and I think we are seeing the country slough off some old skin and start to change in the right direction. Fingers crossed.

    • Ron4Hills says:

      Along the line of “telling the story correctly, WTF is wrong with Mika Brzezinski?

      She has made it her personal mission to over blow this server thing.

      EVEN WITH the negative political fallout, I am still not convinced that Hills did the wrong thing by keeping her emails separate from government servers.

      This morning Joe Scarborough, called Hills paranoid. I was like yeah, with good goddamned reason she is paranoid.

      If they had her personal emails, everything she ever said about anyone would be on the net right now. Ask John Podesta and Donna Brazil.

      The classified stuff that slipped through, that was bad. Them having Hills private conversations would be worse.

      Don’t be surprised if embarrassing and compromising material about Huma finds it way off Weiner’s laptop and on to the net.

  18. William says:

    If you didn’t get a chance to watch Samantha Bee’s show tonight, try to do so. Very funny and brave. She cut right through the nonsense and disinformation, to what is really going on.

  19. janicen says:

    Here’ an outstanding Wonkette piece on the blinding speed with which the FBI was able to deny the myriad breaking stories of Trump’s ties to Russia. Still waiting for them to clear Clinton…