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Must Read (and Watch): the Friday Edition

November 12th, 2010 by Celeste Fremon


WHAT KILLED AIYANA STANLEY-JONES?

Former NY Times Pulitzer winner, Charlie Le Duff, writes about the death of Aiyana Stanley-Jones. But the story is about a zillion more things than the single tragedy of a little girl being killed when Detroit SWAT burst into the wrong apartment and shots for reasons that are still not adequately explained, except that the cops were busy filming a reality show, so maybe got over-hyped up on the Hollywood drama.

Le Duff, who has long been able to write like an angel when he wants to, (and he wants to here), has also woven into the story’s causal threads the multi-leveled miseries of Detroit, as he writes about what one tragedy can teach us about the unraveling of America’s middle class.

Look: you just need to read the thing.

Here is how it opens:

IT WAS JUST AFTER MIDNIGHT on the morning of May 16 and the neighbors say the streetlights were out on Lillibridge Street. It is like that all over Detroit, where whole blocks regularly go dark with no warning or any apparent pattern. Inside the lower unit of a duplex halfway down the gloomy street, Charles Jones, 25, was pacing, unable to sleep.

His seven-year-old daughter, Aiyana Mo’nay Stanley-Jones, slept on the couch as her grandmother watched television. Outside, Television was watching them. A half-dozen masked officers of the Special Response Team—Detroit’s version of SWAT—were at the door, guns drawn. In tow was an A&E crew filming an episode of The First 48, its true-crime program. The conceit of the show is that homicide detectives have 48 hours to crack a murder case before the trail goes cold. Thirty-four hours earlier, Je’Rean Blake Nobles, 17, had been shot outside a liquor store on nearby Mack Avenue; an informant had ID’d a man named Chauncey Owens as the shooter and provided this address.

The SWAT team tried the steel door to the building. It was unlocked. They threw a flash-bang grenade through the window of the lower unit and kicked open its wooden door, which was also unlocked. The grenade landed so close to Aiyana that it burned her blanket. Officer Joseph Weekley, the lead commando—who’d been featured before on another A&E show, Detroit SWAT—burst into the house. His weapon fired a single shot, the bullet striking Aiyana in the head and exiting her neck. It all happened in a matter of seconds.

“They had time,” a Detroit police detective told me. “You don’t go into a home around midnight. People are drinking. People are awake. Me? I would have waited until the morning when the guy went to the liquor store to buy a quart of milk. That’s how it’s supposed to be done.”

But the SWAT team didn’t wait. Maybe because the cameras were rolling, maybe because a Detroit police officer had been murdered two weeks earlier while trying to apprehend a suspect. This was the first raid on a house since his death……


KPCC REACHES OUT TO INMATE FAMILIES TO EXPLORE THE IMPACT OF LONG AND FREQUENT LOCKDOWNS IN CALIFORNIA PRISONS

This is a chronic problem that has gotten worse with the state’s budget woes, as prison dorms and cell blocks are repeatedly put on lockdown after lockdown as a way of saving money in the face of staff cuts (in addition to all the other reasons that prisons are put on lockdown, sometimes questionably, often for way too long.).

Lockdowns mean no visits from family, no phone calls, restricted movement or activities—meaning little or no yard time or anything else that might be deemed constructive or rehabilitative.

I hear about lockdowns all the time anecdotally from family of inmates or from the inmates themselves (once the lockdown is lifted). But there is virtually no reporting on the phenomenon.

So to gather information, KPCC’s Sharon McNary is putting out the word on the web to families:

If you live, work or have loved ones in a California state prison, please help our reporters understand the impact of inmate lockdowns from your perspective.

What do you know about the causes and fallout of prison lockdowns? Who is helped or harmed when the movement, phone access, visitation and other activities of thousands of inmates are restricted for weeks, sometimes months at a time?

Your responses are confidential, nothing you share here is aired or published without your permission. A reporter or producer may call or write for more information.

I look forward to the stories that will come out of this reporting.


THE DAILY BEAST MARRIES NEWSWEEK? UM, OKAY, I GUESS.

Here is the wedding announcement issued by DB’s Tiny Brown:

Some weddings take longer to plan than others. The union of The Daily Beast and Newsweek magazine finally took place with a coffee-mug toast between all parties Tuesday evening, in a conference room atop Beast headquarters, the IAC building on Manhattan’s West 18th Street. The final details were only hammered out last night.

What does this exciting new media marriage mean? It means that The Daily Beast’s animal high spirits will now be teamed with a legendary, weekly print magazine in a joint venture, named The Newsweek Daily Beast Company, owned equally by Barry Diller’s IAC and Sidney Harman, owner (and savior) of Newsweek. As for me, I shall now be in the editor-in-chief’s chair at both The Daily Beast and Newsweek….

And so on.

As media theorist and prof Jay Rosen tweeted last night after the announcement: “Still waiting for the media reporter who would explain the logic.”

Yeah, I’m kinda there with Rosen on that matter.

Meanwhile, an amusing trending topic on Twitter Thursday night was #oddmediamergers.


JON STEWART AND RACHEL MADDOW FOR AN HOUR

As you likely know—or at least you oughta know—Jon Stewart was on the Rachel Maddow Show for nearly an hour Thursday night.

The full hour video may be found here.

I found it riveting.


A NOTE ABOUT THE ABOVE PHOTO: After spending nearly four months in a dogless household following the death of my beautiful 16 1/2 year old wolf dog this past July, I decided it was time to add a new four-footed beast to the family before I got too used to clean rugs and not having to wipe off muddy paws during the rainy season. Enter Lily-the-mini-wolf, who is 8 weeks old as of Thursday and has been residing at my house since late Saturday night.

She and her litter-mates were snatched by a rescue agency from a horrid circumstance involving idiots breeding 50-plus half-starved wolf-dogs in a single house, Lily being one of the 50. She somehow lost half of her tail in the awful place.

I fell in love with the little creature instantly.

Life—in spite of the not sleeping issue and the mistaking of the laptop cord for a chew toy issue—is decidedly better with a new puppy in the house.

(The cat’s a bit unsure about the addition. But he’s coping.)

Anyway, so there you have it. Thank you for listening.

Posted in bears and alligators, Must Reads, wolves | 78 Comments »

78 Responses

  1. Lee Plenty Says:

    The extended lockdowns are to combat political movements. Guarantee it. They’ll tell you it’s a tactic to slow down gang activity, and there should be a laugh track as they’re saying it, too. The last thing the prisons want to do is end gang violence. It’s their bread and butter.

  2. Lee Plenty Says:

    A retired prison guard named “Tijuana Jailer” once said on some stupid blog about the Mexican Mafia that the prison guards encouraged the Norteno/Sureno split at the beginning, because it made the system easier to control the growing Latino population in the California CDC. I doubt it stops there. These prison guards love to talk so much and prove how much they know about gangs (most of them grew up in gang hoods, fascinated by it, some of them still want to be down, as proven by many cases of CO’s gone bad…) that all you have to do is just let them quack. They slip left and right. So eager to brag on the gang they’re biased for they can’t help themselves.

  3. Sparky Says:

    My dogs & I are glad to hear you rescued Lily!

  4. jim hitchcock Says:

    Reading about Lily just now made a sunny day that much brighter :)
    —-

    The Detroit detective had it right. Makes you wonder if this tragedy precipitated by the glare of the klieg lights.

    For whatever reason, this story reminded me of a couple of things. Many years ago, a police officer in Stanton, Ca walked into a dark house and killed a 9 year old holding a toy gun. It left the officer so emotionally shattered he had to resign from the force.

    Another story is from the CF archives: The tale of Luis and Frances Aguilar, in which you told of a cop named John Pedroza, doing his best to be a voice of reason in a sea of gung ho LAPD officers. It was quite a story.

    I guess what I’m wondering here is how this incident may have affected the officers involved. Can’t be easy.

  5. Lee Plenty Says:

    Sometimes I wonder how Lovelle Mixon felt when he shot those 4 Oakland cops. What had to have been running through his head. It’s hard to survive in this corrupted world, with brutal cops. He must have just snapped. He made a mistake, as all humans do. He was a caring, loving person who loved his family. He was a family man. He just had so much pressure on him he just did what so many good men do, he lost it. He’s definitely in a better place now.

  6. Sure Fire/Nikki Says:

    Too bad he never got to tell you in person Rob. Maybe he would have just robbed you during your time together, as he’d done others. Or maybe he would have just raped your girlfriend, mom, sister or child as he’s suspected to have done to a woman prior to his death. Or maybe he would have killed you as he was suspected to have killed a guy months before his famous rampage.

    Yeah he was quite the family man.

  7. Sure Fire/Nikki Says:

    Kamala Harris would have said Mixon’s murders didn’t meet the standards of a death penalty prosecution. You two should do lunch Rob.

  8. WTF Says:

    “It’s hard to survive in this corrupted world, with brutal cops”

    *************************
    Rob… you are talking about Mexico, que no?

  9. Lee Plenty Says:

    And maybe one of the cops Jim spoke of would shoot me in the back while I’m wondering how their incidents are effecting them, and pondering how it can’t be easy for them.

    WTF, what Mexican law enforcement agency did Johannes Mehserle belong to?

  10. Sure Fire/Nikki Says:

    You’re the biggest drama queen in the history of posting Rob.

  11. Answering The Question Says:

    Is it the cops can’t shoot straight and are always killing innocent people and kids with stray bullets?

    I mean hey, if somebody pisses em off or if they see a guy they want to take out do they just fire into a crowd of people standing on the corner or into somebody’s yard with no regard for any of the innocent people or children?

    Nope. Not the cops that do that bullshit on a regular basis.

  12. Lee Plenty Says:

    Sure Fire, I’m just saying, it can’t be easy for Americans like Lovelle Mixon. Being a black man in a place like Oakland, the stress can get overwhelming, and the poverty combined with abusive police can push good people over the edge. Lovelle Mixon’s a good man, just made a mistake. He’s in a better place now, for certain.

  13. Lee Plenty Says:

    ATQ, Lovelle Mixon never fired into a crowd of people. He didn’t harm one civilian. So I don’t know what you’re talking about.

  14. Sure Fire/Nikki Says:

    You’re a liar Rob, he wasn’t a good man and he did harm innocent people. Making up things and posting them as facts doesn’t make them true.

  15. WUZsi Says:

    “Lovelle Mixon’s a good man, just made a mistake”

    From Wikipedia:

    “Mixon had an extensive criminal history. Beginning at age 13, he was arrested multiple times for battery,[10] and by age 20 he began serving a Corcoran state prison sentence following a felony conviction for assault with a deadly weapon during an armed robbery in San Francisco. After he was paroled, Mixon was in and out of prison. At the time of his assault on the officers, he was living in East Oakland at his grandmother’s house and was wanted on a no-bail arrest warrant for violating his current parole conditions. On March 20, 2009, the day prior to the police shootings, Oakland police learned that Mixon was linked by DNA to the February 5, 2009 rape of a 12-year-old girl who was dragged off the street at gunpoint in the East Oakland neighborhood where Mixon’s sister lived. On May 4, 2009 a state laboratory confirmed this link and also said Mixon had robbed and raped two young women on the morning of March 21, 2009, the same day he murdered four police officers. Investigators said that Mixon may have committed several other rapes during recent months, although no convictions had been secured before his death.[11][12] If Mixon had been arrested for his parole violation, he would have faced at most six months in prison; if convicted of rape, he faced a life sentence.”

  16. Lee Plenty Says:

    Sure Fire, I never said that Mixon didn’t necessarily harm innocent people (I’d have to know more about the 4 cops killed to know for sure they’re “innocent”, as you put it…they could be a bunch of Johannes Mehserles for all we know), I said that he didn’t kill any civilians. He didn’t. This was to tack on to ATQ’s point that killer police are at least good marksmen, they don’t shoot into crowds and kill people who were never the target in the first place, etc. Neither did Mixon. His targets were police. In that context, and I emphasize, only in that context, he shot perfectly.

    I think Lovelle Mixon is a good person. You didn’t grow up black in Oakland, Sure Fire. You’ll never know what that’s like. Oakland has one of the most racist police departments in the country. It’s also a very impoverished city. You live a sheltered, pampered life compared to the black man in Oakland. You simply could not have the integrity or moral resolve that a black man from Oakland must have to survive. And you never could, because in your sheltered, privileged universe, you’d never need it. So I don’t think you have the high ground to judge whether Mixon was a good person. I think he was a good person who used poor judgment that day. He made a mistake. You don’t shoot police. It’s only going to make matters worse. From a moral standpoint, who knows if its wrong? If there’s a deity that rules the universe, how do we know how they see American police? Mixon could be in heaven right now. But that’s neither here nor there because we don’t know if any such place exists. Down here on earth, in relatively, it was stupid what he did. Wrong? Not necessarily. But stupid. You just can’t shoot at police like that. They’re too powerful.

    WUZsi, I never bought the story that Lovelle Mixon ever raped or molested anyone. Until I see an independent forensic expert confirm this supposed DNA evidence linking him to these crimes, I think the OPD just made it up. Considering Mixon’s prison time in the past, I think he was well connected to revolutionaries like the 415′s. Rather than concede losing a battle to black revolutionaries, the police decided instead to paint him as a loner and a pervert. That’s my theory. Again, until I see the actual evidence, confirmed by an independent forensic expert not connected to the OPD.

  17. Answering The Question Says:

    So, after Rob gets called on his bullshit by SF, he starts backtracking and playing semantics.

    By the way, was Mehserles an Oakland P.D. officer?

  18. Answering The Question Says:

    “You live a sheltered, pampered life compared to the black man in Oakland.”

    We all live in sheltered pampered life compared to Charles Manson too. Or Richard Ramirez. Or any one of tens thousands of convicted killers.

    “He made a mistake.”
    No he didn’t. He murdered people. He had the intent to shoot them. He “shot perfectly”…member?
    That’s not a mistake. It’s murder. By law of our society.
    The phrase “mistake” is code talk for those who like to whine and snivel because they need to feel good about themselves for being an advocate for the poor underpriviledged criminal. People make mistakes. Criminals commit crimes.

    “So I don’t think you have the high ground to judge whether Mixon was a good person.”
    A judge did. That’s what judges do. They judge people according to the law. SF is just echoing the sentiments of the judge. Our society gives judges that right. Live with it.

    “From a moral standpoint, who knows if its wrong?”
    Well, there ya go. Rob doesn’t know if murder is wrong from a moral standpoint. What’s wrong from a moral standpoint?
    Rape? Child molestation? Stealing?

    In trying to be clever and pump his flamethrower up to megablast, Rob has just made a complete ass of himself with the “from a moral standpoint” statement. ANYBODY could justify ANYTHING with that same logic. You know, like the people who convinced themselves that slavery wasn’t wrong “from a moral standpoint”. Same logic. What a coincidence that Rob uses the same logic as a plantation owner to try and vindicate a human being of a crime.
    The south was full of people who think just like Rob.

  19. Lee Plenty Says:

    Sure Fire, it’s also noteworthy that the very existence of gangs is founded on revolutionary politics. All prison gangs started for revolutionary reasons, and still hold true to many of their revolutionary philosophies. Imagine what it would have been like for Mexican Americans in the penal system if not for the Mexican Mafia forming. They formed to protect Mexicans from racist guards, and it’s still a major part of their purpose. Same goes for the Black Guerrilla Family, Crips, and even the Nuestra Familia. Even though the NF started as adversaries of the Mexican Mafia, there have been reports recently of the Mexican Mafia and Nuestra Familia uniting in federal prisons, partly to protect themselves from racist policies in the federal prisons. So, everyone has their own definition of good and bad. Why should one not form their own opinion on good and bad instead of just basing their beliefs on what the media and government tell them?

  20. Lee Plenty Says:

    ATQ, sure, by way of the law it’s called murder. But from a moral standpoint, he just made a mistake. He had a bad day, and did something stupid. I don’t know if it was morally wrong what he did. He could be a hero. Like I said, I’d like to know more about the officers before I could determine if they’re innocent. There’s reports in the news about “Beat and releases” by the Modesto Police Department. If the same thing has been going on in Oakland, and we know Oakland PD has done some dirt, how would we know these same officers didn’t abuse Mixon in such a manner in the past, and weren’t about to do it again when they pulled him over? He might have been defending himself. Again, we don’t have all the facts. We only have law enforcement’s side of the story. We need all sides of the story, all of the facts. And law enforcement agencies see to it that we never get them. So, we don’t know. I just think Mixon used poor judgment. He doesn’t deserved to be vilified for it. People make mistakes.

  21. WTF Says:

    Rob considers rapists and murderers as “good” people. Can R.T. be a bigger whacko?

  22. Lee Plenty Says:

    I don’t believe I offered an opinion on any rapist in this discussion. We’re talking about Lovelle Mixon. He never raped anyone as far as I know.

  23. Lee Plenty Says:

    BTW, WTF, you consider murderers good people, too.

  24. Answering The Question Says:

    SF,
    Rob’s just trying to goad you because you’ve kicked his ass in every debate you’ve had.
    If he really believes what he’s saying, he needs seriously psychiatric help. If he doesn’t believe it, he’s just goading you.
    I think it’s the latter. If he didn’t think murder was wrong, he wouldn’t be so upset about Mehserle.
    He also wouldn’t be so obsessive about police brutality, because if he doesn’t consider murder morally wrong, how could he consider an ass kicking wrong?

    I think he’s just pissed because he can’t hold his water in the debates, so he has to find another way to try and get under your skin.

  25. Lee Plenty Says:

    ATQ, murder’s wrong in self defense? I’m sorry, but if you don’t believe that, you’re far too leftist for me. Like I said, we don’t have all of the facts regarding Mixon and the OPD. OPD is one of the dirtiest law enforcement agencies in the developed world, and one of the most violent. Not to mention, one of the most racist. We don’t know what happened. Maybe those cops roughed Mixon up a couple of times already and he wasn’t in the mood for a 3rd go around. And, that is self defense. And, according to the constitution, legal. The 2nd amendment was put in place for American citizens like Lovelle Mixon to protect themselves from a physically abusive government agency. Just like the tea partiers are arming themselves for what they believe will be a big war against Obama and his supporters. Mixon might have been defending himself. We just don’t know. And until we have all of the facts, I’m not going to make a judgment.

  26. WTF Says:

    Rob,
    I guess you no more about prison gangs than the prison gang members themselves do? I never once heard any mention of prison guards in stories like this. How many times do you plan on embarassing and making a fool of yourself?

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Tdr1UMAdTV0&list=SL

  27. Lee Plenty Says:

    Ha ha. He tried to prove that prison guards aren’t racist with one youtube link. Your name’s fitting. “WTF”. Exactly. lol

  28. Lee Plenty Says:

    That’s like saying you’ve made every free throw you’ve ever shot in your life and posting a video of you making one free throw. Feel free to use the names OMG and LOL as well.

  29. Randy Paul Says:

    ZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZ

  30. Lee Plenty Says:

    What makes you think your comments are exciting, Randy?

  31. Answering The Question Says:

    See, here’s another aspect of Rob’s absolutely wack and totally disjointed line of thinking. Who do the cops in Oakland work for? Who’s the Chief of police’s boss?
    The Mayor. Who was the Mayor of Oakland from 1999-2007? Jerry Brown.
    Looks like he did absolutely nothing to stop the brutality.

    Who’s in charge of DA’s stepping up and prosecuting brutal or dirty cops? The AG. Who has been the AG since 2007?
    Jerry Brown.
    If Rob is correct, he looked the other way.

    How in the holy fuck could a guy who absolutely despises the Oakland P.D for their alleged brutality, vote for the guy who oversaw the Oakland P.D. and then was the top cop of CA. and failed to stop it?

    OOPS. Guess he didn’t think that one thru any farther than the end of his nose did he.

    Rob can’t wait to whine, snivel and disparage prison guards anytime he gets the chance. The funny thing is, he votes just like they do.

    Prison guards union endorsed Jerry Brown.

    Oakland P.D. union endorsed Jerry Brown.

    Oakland P.D. endorsed Jerry Brown for AG.
    Maybe that’s so they could kick ass, take names, and get away with it because Brown wouldn’t prosecute brutal cops.

    Just saying.
    Rob voted the very same way that the prison guards did and the Oakland P.D. cops did.

    How funny is that?

  32. Lee Plenty Says:

    ATQ if you think the Oakland police answer to the mayor you’re simply too naive for this conversation. OPD told Mayor Dellums he would not be welcome at the service for the officers that Mixon shot. Dellums didn’t show. You tell me who calls the shots in that town. If you’re not going to get up to speed as to how things work in the real world, ATQ, you should leave this discussion to those who do. You’re simply interrupting.

  33. Answering The Question Says:

    Among JB’s endorsements:

    public safety groups and individuals, including LA County Sheriff Lee Baca, the California Police Chiefs Association, and the Peace Officers Research Association, the largest statewide organization representing public safety personnel in the nation

    The OPD cops loved JB as the Mayor. That’s why they endorsed him for AG and then for Governor.

    And according to Rob, OPD is one of the dirtiest in the nation.

    Hmmmmmmmm. Again, Rob seems to be in the biggest debate with himself. lol.

  34. Lee Plenty Says:

    ATQ, you’re too much about politics and not enough about reality. You simply don’t know how things work. Despite what’s on paper, OPD does NOT answer to Oakland’s mayor. Not Dellums. Not Brown. Not anyone. Not for some time. The Oakland Police Department are their own bosses and they are the most powerful political branch of Oakland’s local government. Get up to speed. I know you like to talk politics and discern a political idea or point from every single discussion, but this isn’t about Democratic/Republican politics. This is about something that’s obviously over your head, the real world.

  35. Answering The Question Says:

    Me get up to speed? lol. I’m there. If you get any slower, you’ll be going backwards.

    Now go ahead and give one of your long ass diatribes to try and explain away the fact tha OPD loved JB as the Mayor, AG and endorsed him for Governor. Go ahead and try to explain away why JB didn’t try to clean up the OPD when he was Mayor or AG. Maybe he’ll do it as the Governor.

    Or maybe, they aren’t near as dirty as you say, and the guy you voted for to be the Governor knows you’re dead wrong.

    If OPD is as bad as you say, it can only be one of three things where JB is concerned.

    1. He doesn’t give a shit as long as they endorse him.

    2. He wasn’t smart enough to see that they were dirty.

    3. He knows they aren’t as dirty as you claim and would tell you you’re full of shit.

    I’m going with number three. lol.

  36. Lee Plenty Says:

    ATQ, you don’t get it.

    This isn’t about political endorsements, Democrats and Republicans…CNN vs. FoxNews, Brown vs. Whitman….

    You’re just looking at the wrong map.

    You’re simply incapable of grasping the reality of Oakland’s power structure.

    I know you get really excited about political debates. But such debating skills will not help you in this conversation. In fact, you’ll only come off as child like and annoying.

    Read my two comments above to get an idea of how Oakland works.

  37. Answering The Question Says:

    I suppose he wasn’t their boss as AG either. I suppose he didn’t have the power or authority to have his DA’s go after those OPD cops that you claim are so brutal. I suppose you’re going with above reason’s 1 & 2. That would have to be it if they were dirty and he didn’t do shit as the AG to stop it.

    Again, you try to make your bombastic statements all full of emotion and drama, and sound like some kind of hero for the underpriviledged.
    In the end, you end up looking foolish.

  38. Lee Plenty Says:

    ATQ, try to grasp reality.

    NOBODY IS BOSS OF THE OAKLAND POLICE DEPARTMENT.

    Nobody.

    Period.

    On paper, Mayor is in charge of Oakland. AG is top cop.

    In reality, OPD takes orders from no one.

  39. Lee Plenty Says:

    ATQ, it’s obvious you’ve never been to Oakland, nor do you have any contacts there or any expertise to so much as give an educated opinion on how things work. You’re basically giving the suburban high school freshman take on how Oakland works. It’s time for you to stop typing and start reading, because it’s obvious you don’t get it.

  40. Answering The Question Says:

    Facts Rob. FACTS. JB was the Mayor of Oakland. Show me where he tried to clean up the OPD you claim is so brutal.

    Facts Rob, FACTS. OPD endorsed JB for AG, and they endorsed him for Governor.

    Facts Rob, FACTS. It’s the AG’s job to clean up dirty police departments.

    I know it’s hard for you to debate using facts. You want to present your opinion as facts, because the actual facts don’t back up your position. I know it’s tough to deal with the inconvenient truths that make you squirm and try to bullshit your way along.
    Things like, “you just don’t get it” are laughingly obvious as an attempt to move away from the facts.

    Here’s another fact that you can chew on.
    You voted for the Governor that the OPD and prison guards unions endorsed for AG and Governor.

    Live with it. It’s a FACT.

  41. Lee Plenty Says:

    ATQ, you can give every fact you want as to what’s on paper and how things are supposed to work.

    It’s obvious to me that all you can discern from this discussion is a gotcha political point.

    This discussion is above red/blue politics, which is all you know, obviously.

    You don’t know how things work in the real world.

    You have no real world experience.

    Everything you know is textbook, and pretty remedial at that.

    Go ahead, for the umpteenth time, break down the official political structure of Oakland and California, and for the umpteenth time, I’ll remind you that it’s merely on paper, things don’t work that way. This discussion is above you. YOU DON’T GET IT. Like I said, it’s reading time for you, not typing time. You can chime in again when we’re talking Democrat/Republican stuff, exit polling, all that crap. This is above you, and it’s obvious.

  42. Answering The Question Says:

    “in reality, OPD takes orders from no one.”

    So, in reality, if what you allege of the OPD is true, you’re saying that JB was a weak and ineffectual AG who couldn’t clean up one of the dirtiest pd’s in the nation.

    And you voted for him for Governor.

    Can’t have it both ways.
    In voting for JB for Governor did you just decide to give him a pass for not being able to clean up one of the dirtiest P.D.’s in the nation?

    I mean, that IS his job as AG. So you must have given him a pass.

    So quit with ALL THE DRAMA. You obviously don’t REALLY give a shit about it, or you wouldn’t have given the guy who’s job it was to clean it up a pass for not doing what you’re so supposedly outraged for.

    Simple as that.

  43. Lee Plenty Says:

    ATQ, it’s obvious you don’t get it. When you grow up, you’ll learn that sometimes the best way to talk is with your ears. Especially when you’re in a discussion that’s way over your head. Pay attention and get edified. We’ll have another big old Republican/Democrat debate in here one day, usual lineup, me and Reg and against you and SF, whatever, and we’ll hash out all of our spinning and gotchas. But this is more serious than that. And you don’t get it. You think the Oakland police department takes orders from the Oakland mayor. You’ve proven yourself to be too naive for this discussion. Just drop it because you’ve hit a dead end.

  44. Answering The Question Says:

    Or maybe as usual, you’re just trying to antagonize some of Celeste’s commenters by making asinine statements and turning up your flamethrower to megablast.

    Your faux outrage is obvious.

  45. Lee Plenty Says:

    You can think whatever you want of me, but anyone who chimes into a conversation about Oakland and says the OPD takes orders from Oakland’s mayor has their blinders tilted to full blast. You should have shut your yapper and started listening long ago. But no, you had to prove how smart you are (or, how smart you THINK you are), and blurt one of the most naive things anyone could ever say about Oakland. You’ve been on the ropes since, bud.

  46. Answering The Question Says:

    All of your attempts to sound so intellectual can’t hide the FACT that as AG it is JB’s job to clean up dirty P.D.’s.

    You’ll have to live with that.

    You can type all the “grow ups” and “listen with your ears” and “in the real worlds” you want to.

    Doesn’t change the FACTS.

    The FACT is, IF what you allege is true, you voted for the Governor who, as AG failed to do his job where the OPD is concerned.

    Doesn’t matter. OPD isn’t as bad as you claim, and you know it. THAT’S why me and you both have no problem with your vote for Governor.

  47. Lee Plenty Says:

    Are you just a masochist are what? Are you enjoying this? Because frankly, I’m not. I’m starting to feel guilty, like Ray Boom Boom Mancini. If this were a boxing match they’d have an ambulance come right into the arena and pick you up at ringside. ICU. You said that the OPD takes orders from the Oakland Mayor. <—– Single dumbest thing anyone's ever said about Oakland, ever. I can't believe you're still talking. This discussion was OVER when you said that, because it was obvious at that point that your knowledge of how things work in Oakland is at a suburban 9th grade level, at best. Remedial text book. You're way in over your head. That's why you're trying to turn this discussion to Jerry Brown, politics, Democrats republicans fox news cnn bush clinton palin mccain obama….that's all you know. You don't know real world. And you proved it when you tried to speak up about Oakland when you know nothing.

  48. Sure Fire/Nikki Says:

    You guys do all the back and forth you want. Rob is a pathological liar with some type of mental issue on board. He makes up shit or takes things so far off course trying to converse with him is grown to be useless. Of course it was always close to that.

    Fuck him, he’s really not smart enough to bother with and has nothing going on in his so he comes here to spread his bigotry and hate. Why entertain him, nobody should respond to one word he says, not one.

  49. Lee Plenty Says:

    Sure Fire, you never got back to me on the other thread. I’ll ask again. When you were in the army, did you play the flute or the drum?

  50. Lee Plenty Says:

    Because you never went to war. We know that now, don’t we?

  51. Lee Plenty Says:

    SF got the George W. Bush medal. Completed service without getting a spec of dirt on him. Congratulations, private.

  52. Answering The Question Says:

    From JB’s website.

    JUST THE FACTS #2: TOUGH ON CRIME AS MAYOR OF OAKLAND
    Jerry Brown significantly cut crime as Mayor of Oakland. Brown enacted more than 16 anti-crime initiatives that cracked down on repeat felons, parolees, drug dealers, and felons with firearms. As mayor, Brown dramatically reduced crime compared to the prior eight years, including a 24.6% drop in the number of murders.

    When Brown Was Mayor, Crime Went Down In Oakland
    *****************************************************

    Mercy me. Looks like JB is taking credit for crime going down in Oakland when he was Mayor. Now why would he do that if he wasn’t having an impact on how the OPD did their job?

  53. Lee Plenty Says:

    ATQ, what website did you read to figure out who your parents were when you were a child?

  54. Randy Paul Says:

    What makes you think your comments are exciting, Randy?

    It’s the sheer tedium of watching this mind-numbing pointless and petty back and forth between the three of you is of interest to no one but the three of you. May I kindly suggest that the three of you collaborate on a blog in which you can hurl insults at each other to your heart’s content and not waste someone else’s disk space and bandwidth with this tedium?

  55. Answering The Question Says:

    My God that’s funny. What you should do is get out of the debate game and go into comedy.

    Or, maybe not. But you should definitely get out of the debate game.

  56. Lee Plenty Says:

    Nobody’s talking about Jerry Brown and whether or not he supports the police. There’s front door politics and back door politics. Follow the money trail. Jerry Brown is a moderate. That means he’s not liberal on every issue.

  57. Lee Plenty Says:

    Randy, what makes you think your comments aren’t mind numbing and pointless? You’re about the most boring writer here.

  58. Lee Plenty Says:

    ATQ, you know who your daddy was because your momma told ya. Same as everyone else. There was no hand book. No text. See what I’m getting at? Some things just work the way they do. What’s said and done in politics are two different things. But you’re too much of a partisan believer to face that fact.

  59. Answering The Question Says:

    Randy.
    Sorry what you’re seeing/hearing isn’t interesting to you.
    I would treat it like my radio/television and simply change the channel.

  60. Lee Plenty Says:

    Randy, I’m just kidding, btw. And I’m done here. I’m too smart for this blog. Goodbye.

  61. Answering The Question Says:

    There’s the towel from the corner again. He’s had enough for right now.

  62. Sure Fire/Nikki Says:

    Quit getting your panties all bunched up again Randy, I’m not in their back and forth. I realize you’re the prissy type but that last post is so girlie I had to let you know. My posts take up less than 1/10th of this threa, I could care less about it, but I’m sure your bff Reg would be proud of you.

    As it is, this isn’t your site so chill out.

  63. Lee Plenty Says:

    Jesus Christ, leave Randy alone. We all know he’s right. There’s 62 comments on this thread and like 60 of them are me and ATQ. I’m done with this place for a while. I can only teach you guys so much.

  64. Lee Plenty Says:

    BTW, Sure Fire, I met your wife today. What a sweetheart.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OmC8TDXeNHk

  65. WTF Says:

    1) I’m too smart for this blog. Goodbye
    2) I’m done with this place for a while.

    *******************
    A liar and a tease.

  66. Randy Paul Says:

    SF,

    Your insults would bother me only if I was incapable of considering the source.

    I’m not asking you to do this for me; you should do this out of respect for Celeste. Regardless of whether it’s my site is irrelevant. I’m as free to make my comments as you.

  67. Celeste Fremon Says:

    I don’t have time to deal with this today, nor did I over the weekend.

    I’m inclined to block Rob, Sure Fire and ATQ. I’m really sick to death of this kind of interchange, which means I’m sick of all three of you, frankly.

    Maybe I’ll be in a better mood when I sort things out on Tuesday.

  68. Sure Fire/Nikki Says:

    Do what you have to do Celeste but as I notified Randy I wasn’t part of their back and forth. I even told others not to respond to Rob. Look at the threads comments and you’ll see I was absent from 14 to 48 and came on to say I wasn’t taking part of any thread with Rob in it. I than responded to Randy’s, as usual, hysterical whining. Randy of course never had a problem with the filth Reg put up here on a daily basis did he? Of course not Reg is on his team, just look at Marc’s site.

    You were the one who months ago said you were getting rid of Rob and he’s constantly going way past what anybody should be allowed to write. That’s on you, not on me or anyone else.

    Randy wants to shut down speech that he doesn’t agree with, and without presenting any facts at all to back his case up. The evidence of that’s all over this board. No surprise to me as that’s how the far left works in this country.

  69. Celeste Fremon Says:

    I’ll look through the comments in detail tomorrow. And, indeed, I did let Rob back in his latest incarnation. That, as you say, is on me. How others respond to him, however, is on them.

  70. Randy Paul Says:

    Randy wants to shut down speech that he doesn’t agree with, and without presenting any facts at all to back his case up. The evidence of that’s all over this board. No surprise to me as that’s how the far left works in this country.

    Poppycock. All I want to do is have you and everyone else here address people’s responses without insulting. The fact that you seem unable to do that is your own shortcoming and not mine.

  71. WUZsi Says:

    “He made a mistake.”

    It would seem he made quite a few mistakes in his short life. This real issue is he never learned from those mistakes, resulting in pain and anguish for many innocent people. A tragedy all around.

  72. Sure Fire/Nikki Says:

    “Poppycock. All I want to do is have you and everyone else here address people’s responses without insulting”.

    If that were true Randy you would have said something about the constant filth that Reg put up here when he was here. You didn’t Randy, you never said a word. In fact what you told me was you figured I could defend myself. I can Randy, done it for years in every aspect of my life, but don’t try to come off with this holier than though attitude about how one posts when you only apply it to some.

    It’s called being disingenuous.

  73. Lee Plenty Says:

    WUZsi, Mixon made a mistake. Just like a lot of police and soldiers make mistakes when they’re in the line of duty. Just like a lot of the tea partiers have already made mistakes and crossed the line, and many more will. Some of those tea partiers are going to take a life or two in the next few years, undoubtedly, and of innocent people. Will we condemn the tea party? Of course not. They’re patriots. They love their country. But inevitably, one of them is going to lose their cool and kill a couple of innocent people, for nothing more than disagreeing with their political views and solutions. And we’re not going to condemn their way of life or culture at all. We’re going to just assume they made a mistake, that they went too far. And that a few months or so in jail along with some probation will probably do them good. Then we’ll wish them well as they’re released and back on to their tea party crusade. People make mistakes. Lovelle Mixon was just one of them. Shooting cops is not good for anyone. It’s just going to fire them up, they’re going to take it out on the whole community. Bad move. But morally wrong? No less than the violent tea partiers, or the minutemen guys who killed that little girl in Texas. People make mistakes. Let’s not condemn them.

  74. Lee Plenty Says:

    Let’s put it this way. Lovelle Mixon and Johannes Mehserle are basically the same person. They have the same heart. They’re both good people, they both have a lot of pride. Like most men, they don’t like being insulted or put to the test. Both of them acted out violently when in such a situation. They’re human. It’s going to happen. That’s why I’m glad Johannes Mehserle only got a couple of years. I’m glad this judge had the common sense to see that Mehserle was a good person, who just made a mistake. Mixon was no different. Unfortunately, he’s had to suffer a much worse sentence. But he’s a good person, like Mehserle, so undoubtedly he’s in a better place now.

  75. Randy Paul Says:

    It’s called being disingenuous.

    It’s called respect for the host. I have no interest in stopping anyone’s speech. It’s the tone that has turned me off.

    reg has not posted here in days.

    There are not words in English or any of the other languages I speak to describe fully how little I care what you think of me. I haven’t been insulting you. I’m trying to play by the rules laid down by the host. If you can’t, that’s your problem.

  76. Sure Fire Says:

    I don’t care a bit about anything you feel or write Randy. I pointed out the fact that you have no character and you didn’t argue the point. Your response was “Reg hasn’t posted here in days” to my claim that you whine and go off the deep end on how some post but when I offered Reg as an example of someone who costantly used vulgar language that you were fine with, you came up with how you thought I could defend myself. Now it’s he hasn’t posted here in a while? What other excuse will you post to try and cover your obvious double standard that gives hypocrisy a whole new meaning?

    You guys are your own worst enemy, Reg was no different. All you do every time you post is give me more ammo to rebut you. It’s amazing what I can do with that low I.Q. of mine.

  77. Lee Plenty Says:

    Randy, Reg, and SBL,

    Question. Why don’t we just run Sure Fire out of here? The 4 of us could just flat out torture this guy. We could make him cry on a nightly basis. We can pick his boisterous, half witted comments to pieces sentence by sentence, and just humiliate him in the process. Yet for some reason we give him the benefit of the doubt and try to have adult debates with him. Safe to say this strategy failed? What do you guys say we go the other direction with him? No more respect, period. Let’s just let him have it.

  78. Celeste Fremon Says:

    Okay, the idea or wading through the comment stream to try to decide who’s behaving worse than whom, does not seem like a productive endeavor. So here’s the deal:

    ANY COMMENTS THAT ARE PERSONAL ATTACKS WILL BE DELETED. REPEATS WILL CAUSE BANNING.

    If you don’t know what that means, read WLA’s 10 Rules for commenting. Then read them again:

    RULES OF THE ROAD

    I fully believe that a lively and diverse community of commenters makes a news site and/or blog a much richer and more valuable place for all concerned.

    But I have learned through trial and error that a system of comment moderation is necessary for such a community to germinate, grow and thrive.

    Hence the following 10 RULES FOR COMMENTING AT WITNESS LA

    Rule #1: Be civil to and respectful of other commenters. No ad hominem attacks. Discuss or argue issues, do not attack people.

    Rule #2: When in doubt, use the Living Room Rule.

    If you come into the house—AKA WitnessLA— and behave rudely to a guest at the nice party in the living room, I will ask you to stop. If you continue, you’ll be escorted to the door, and I will tell the big, bad, heavily armed bouncer not to let you back in. Basically, the living room rule means that you should behave as if you’re an invited guest at a lively salon in my living room. Don’t monopolize the conversation. Be civil. Don’t attack people personally. This is a dinner party. Not a food fight.

    And just to be clear, if someone attacks you, you don’t have permission to start throwing crockery back. Ignore them. I’ll deal with them—either sooner or later. Send me an email, if you like. If you both trash the living room, I won’t care who started it. Both of you will get tossed.

    Rule #3: Racist, sexist, homophobic or generally hate filled comments have no place here.

    Ditto hateful or slanderous generalizations about one cultural group, religion, nationality, or occupation.

    “It was only a joke,” and “You have no sense of humor,” doesn’t excuse hateful comments. If you were genuinely misinterpreted, a quick, sincere apology may set things right. A rationalization or shouts of PC Police! will not.

    Demonization of any kind is what this site stands against.

    Rule #4: Don’t attack the host.

    Disagree with me all you want. But attack me—or any of the other regular bloggers and reporters that WLA will be adding— and you’re gone. No warnings.

    Be smart. This is my house.

    Rule #5: Be yourself. Don’t impersonate other commenters.

    Rule # 6: Stay on topic, at least within reason. And don’t over post.

    If you somehow manage to turn every topic into an opportunity to deliver version #479 of your favorite rant, expect not to be here very long.

    By the same token, if you are posting five times as much as everyone else, you are the loudmouth in the room high jacking the conversation. Dial it back

    Rule #7: Don’t whine about Rules 1-6.

    Comment control is not “censorship.” As Eric Zorn of the Chicago Tribune put it, shooing someone from the room is not the same as trying to silence him or her. Don’t like the rules here? No problem. I wish you godspeed as you take yourself and your comments elsewhere.

    Rule # 8: If you break any of the rules, I will likely (operative word: likely) give you a warning—and/or delete your comment. If you persist, I’ll ban you from the site.

    This doesn’t mean I don’t like you. It simply means I’ve determined that—for whatever reason— you are not willing to be part of a lively, thoughtful, decorous discussion in which all members treat the others—even those with whom they passionately disagree—as they would wish to be treated.

    Rule # 9: Enforcement of the rules will be subjective.

    If I’ve had enough sleep, I may be more be tolerant. If I’m over-tired and you piss me off, tolerance vaporizes without warning.

    If you think I’m harder on you than the next commenter: A. You’re probably wrong. But B. Let’s just say you are right. It’s likely that you wandered on to the living room and started throwing rocks when I was in a deleting mood, or just happened to glance over. Oh, freaking well. The best way around this “she’s picking on me” issue not to throw rocks at all (metaphorically speaking) even if somebody else cast the first stone.

    Rule #10: In summation, to paraphrase what The Atlantic’s Ta-Nehisi Coates said in his own list of commenting rules: Don’t be a jerk and we’ll be fine.

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