Violent protests against police brutality in Baltimore

Demonstrators throw rocks at the police after the funeral of Freddie Gray on Monday, April 27, at New Shiloh Baptist Church in Baltimore. Gray died from spinal injuries about a week after he was arrested and transported in a Baltimore Police Department van.  NBC News

Demonstrators throw rocks at the police after the funeral of Freddie Gray on Monday, April 27, at New Shiloh Baptist Church in Baltimore. Gray died from spinal injuries about a week after he was arrested and transported in a Baltimore Police Department van. NBC News

It looks like police in Baltimore are getting the war they wanted.

I heard a police spokesman complain about “lawless individuals,” but the most lawless individuals in America today are thug cops acting like an occupying military force. Perhaps if the police were as concerned about the black people they’re murdering as they are about fellow cops being injured in protests, then I’d care.

But here’s the uncomfortable truth: No minority in America ever won civil rights WITHOUT protests and demonstrations.

People complaining about violent protests against police brutality seem to forget that America won its independence with VIOLENCE.

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TPP isn’t NAFTA

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The irrational freakout over TPP

TPP

Just got an email from a friend of mine lamenting that the Trans Pacific Partnership deal was “secret” and no one knew what was in it. Well, of course, since the terms are still being negotiated and we’re not going to know what they are until they’re settled. Then Congress gets to look at it and we’ll know what’s being proposed.

But then my friend went on to claim that TPP was going to be “the end of our democracy!” It’s “terrible!” It’s a “monster” that’s going to “kill people!” What? How do you know all this if you admit you don’t know what’s in it in the first place?

THIS is what I mean by irrational freaking out over the deal.

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The courage of Bruce Jenner

Bruce Jenner ABC

Bruce Jenner’s ABC interview where she announced “I am a woman” is all the Internet is talking about. Did you see the interview?

Jenner also says she’s a Republican, though I must admit I don’t understand why she would want to support a party that believes she’s worth 77 cents for every man’s dollar. But surely that’ll make Rick Santorum and Rush Limbaugh’s heads explode, so that’s a good thing.

Many are calling Jenner courageous. Do you agree?

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The racism of Kinloch, Missouri

Mayor Betty McCray prevented from entering city hall in Kinloch, Missouri.

Mayor Betty McCray prevented from entering city hall in Kinloch, Missouri on April 23, 2015

The people of Kinloch, Missouri elected their first black mayor. The mostly white police department locked her out of city hall, and the outgoing white mayor’s administration is refusing to let the city clerk administer the oath of office to her.

Just more adventures in post-racial America.

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Some common sense on GMOs.

Why do we take scientific advice from people who aren’t scientists?

(I tried to embed the video from Comedy Central’s website, which works on Blogger but apparently not on WordPress for some reason. Maybe I should switch back to Blogger.)

Watch the enlightening video here.

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GOP economics: The poor must pay for the rich

GOP economics: Tax cuts for the rich made Kansas broke, so now Republicans move to raise taxes on the poor. The rich, who are already wealthy, need more tax breaks, and the people Republicans believe should pay for it are those already at the bottom of the economic ladder.

This is the continuing recipe for revolution. The Republicans never learn from history.

Gov. Sam Brownback signs a welfare reform bill into law in Topeka, Kan., Thursday, April 16, 2015. The law tells recipients that they can't use cash assistance from the state to attend concerts, get tattoos or buy lingerie. Although more than 20 states have similar bills, Kansas appears to have the most extensive list of restricted items. (AP Photo/Orlin Wagner)

Gov. Sam Brownback signs a welfare bill into law in Topeka, Kan., on Thursday. (Orlin Wagner/AP)

(Washington Post) Wealthier Kansans are paying much less in taxes after Republican Gov. Sam Brownback overhauled the state’s income tax a few years ago. Brownback and other Republican officials hoped that more generous policies would stimulate the economy, bringing more revenue into the state’s coffers and making up the difference on the bottom line.

It didn’t work. Kansas’s economy has kept expanding at more or less same plodding pace as the rest of the country. And now, according to official estimates released Monday, the state will have at least a $143 million budget shortfall in 2016, and likely more. Lawmakers are looking for a way to plug the hole.

One thing they’re not considering: asking the wealthy to chip in. Instead, in a legislature that last week barred welfare recipients from using their benefits to go swimming or watch movies, the proposals that look most likely to succeed are sales and excise taxes that would be paid disproportionately by Kansas’s poor and working class.

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