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Gender: Male
Hometown: Detroit Area, MI
Home country: USA
Current location: San Francisco, CA
Member since: Wed Oct 29, 2008, 02:53 PM
Number of posts: 9,272

About Me

Partner, father and liberal Democrat. I am a native Michigander living in San Francisco who is a citizen of the world.

Journal Archives

Bernie Sanders Claims Vermont’s Hunters Need Their Guns on Amtrak. The Hunters Disagree

Lisa McCrillis of Gun Purveyors in Alburg thought the idea that anyone would take a train to go hunting was hilarious—and dangerous. “That’s silly,” she said. “I’ve never heard of anybody doing that.”

What if the train stops, McCrillis wanted to know, and somebody saw a gun case in the baggage and just took it? Nobody would notice until it was too late. And what if your train passed through somewhere, like New York, with impossibly stringent gun laws and was searched? Well, then, you’d probably become a felon.

“If somebody came in and asked me, ‘Lisa, can I take my gun on the train?’ I would say, ‘No, you can’t.’ That’s really bizarre.”

None of this was to say, McCrillis added, that someone, somewhere in Vermont wasn't doing what Sanders said. But if they were, she’d certainly never heard of it.

Rick Gorham of Rick’s Gun Shop in Burke, Vermont, also had never heard of such a thing. “Uh, I don’t know anything about that,” he said. “I’ve never heard of anybody taking a gun on an Amtrak train. You can take ‘em on a plane,” he said, but “I haven’t heard of anybody taking their gun on an Amtrak train, no.”

Gray Stevens of the Vermont Sportsman’s Club hadn’t heard of it either. “Oh, I don’t know anything about that,” he said. “Everybody that hunts takes their vehicle, goes to hunting camps. I don’t know anything about people using trains to go hunting. Once they get there, what are they gonna do, take a cab to the woods?”


The Civil War Begins – 1st Trailer for Marvel’s “Captain America: Civil War”

Clinton scolds Trump for treatment of Black Lives Matter protester

Hillary Clinton on Tuesday condemned Donald Trump’s comments about a Black Lives Matter protester who allegedly was assaulted during one of his rallies last week.

“Now he’s saying maybe it’s OK for peaceful protesters to get ‘roughed up.’ Violence is never, ever acceptable,” Clinton wrote during a Noticias Telemundo Facebook Q&A.

Clinton was referring to comments Trump made after video showed several white supporters punching and kicking a Black Lives Matter protester at a Trump event in Alabama Saturday. On Fox News on Sunday, Trump defended the treatment of the protester, saying, “Maybe he should have been roughed up because it was absolutely disgusting what he was doing.” He added that “it wasn’t my people if they treated him rough.”

At a campaign rally in Cleveland, Monday night, Trump continued to deflect blame, saying that it wasn't his people who dealt with the protester, but that “he was really misbehaving badly.”


Hillary maintains solid lead in Massachusetts primary poll.

Former secretary of state Hillary Clinton continues to lead among Massachusetts Democratic primary voters with 54 percent saying they lean her way. Senator Bernie Sanders of Vermont drew 29 percent, and former Maryland governor Martin O’Malley collected 3 percent.Twelve percent were undecided.


Laborers' International Union of North America endorses Hillary

Hillary Clinton just locked down another endorsement from a major labor union as she seeks the Democratic nomination for president, solidifying her hold on organized labor's backing in the primary.

The Laborers' International Union of North America, or LIUNA, announced Tuesday that it would be throwing its weight behind the front-runner, rather than Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) or former Maryland Gov. Martin O'Malley. The union said in a statement that it arrived at the decision after a membership poll and a vote by the union's executive board.

"LIUNA members are deeply concerned about the direction of our country and are looking for a real leader who will create good jobs, rebuild our country, and grow our economy," Terry O’Sullivan, the union's president, said in a statement. "Secretary Clinton’s record proves that she is a tough and tested fighter for our nation and for working men and women."

LIUNA has roughly a half-million members working mostly in the construction and building trades. In response to the announcement, the Clinton campaign said the candidate was "honored" to have the endorsement and would "fight to increase investment in our infrastructure."


After Paris, Sanders sticks to script — and it doesn’t say much about fighting terrorism

ST. HELENA ISLAND, S.C. — The more than 600 people who packed into a historic cabin on this small sea island were treated to the usual rousing — and lengthy — performance by Bernie Sanders.

The Democratic presidential hopeful ticked off an expansive agenda for improving the lot of those struggling to get by, touched on climate change and devoted some extra attention to issues of racial justice and policing.

But by the time the senator from Vermont had wrapped up his speech, which clocked in at 59 minutes, there was one topic that hadn’t merited a single mention: foreign policy.

The omission was striking, given the marked shift in tone of the presidential race in the week and a half since the terrorist attacks in Paris that killed 130 people and injured more than 350. Many of the Republican candidates have recast their pitches altogether, and the other Democrats, including former secretary of state Hillary Clinton, have pushed their plans for defeating the Islamic State to the top of their agendas.

The post-Paris-attacks Sanders campaign looks remarkably similar to the pre-Paris-attacks Sanders campaign. During a four-day swing through South Carolina and Georgia that ended Monday, the candidate said little about fighting terrorism unless asked by a journalist or audience member — as happened here shortly after he opened the floor to questions.


Hillary Clinton Is Most Trusted Candidate To Handle Terrorism, Poll Finds

Terrorism trails only the economy as the most important issue in the presidential race, according to a new Washington Post and ABC News poll conducted after the attacks in Paris and some of the raids to round up suspects.

Among all poll respondents, Hillary Clinton beat the leading Republican candidates as the potential presidential nominee most trusted to handle terrorism, but her lead melted against several Republicans when the poll was narrowed to registered voters.

The poll, which reached 1,004 adults on land lines and cell phones from Nov. 16-19, revealed that Americans rank security among the most important issues, though there's a wide gulf between Republicans and Democrats. Twenty-eight percent of respondents overall said terrorism was the most important issue for them when considering how to vote in 2016, while 33 percent said the economy was their top issue.

Forty-two percent of Republicans and independents who say they lean toward the GOP picked terrorism as the most important issue for 2016. That beat out the economy, which was the most important issue for 29 percent of this group.

The result differs sharply from what Democrats and those who lean toward the Democratic Party said. Of this group, just 18 percent said terrorism was most important to them, while 39 percent said the economy and 19 percent said health care.

The poll also asked respondents how Clinton compared to Republican presidential contenders Donald Trump, Ben Carson, Marco Rubio, Ted Cruz and Jeb Bush on the issue of terrorism. Previous ABC News and Washington Post polls on the 2016 election had not asked respondents about which candidate was more trustworthy to confront terrorism, so it's unclear whether the Paris attacks, which left 130 people dead, had an impact on public opinion.


While the MSM freaks out over Syrian refugees....

UPDATE: Nov. 22, 2015, 11:26 PM ET NEW ORLEANS (AP) — New Orleans police say 16 people were wounded when two groups of people opened fire on each other as hundreds of people were gathered at a playground for an impromptu music video shoot.

In a statement, the New Orleans police said witnesses told police that both groups involved in the shooting ran off immediately after the gunfire.

Police were already on their way to the Bunny Friend Playground to break up the crowd after learning that a crowd had gathered there.

Ambulances took 10 victims to area hospitals, and police later learned that another six victims had been taken to the hospital in private vehicles.


“Jessica Jones”: Marvel’s newest show makes surviving trauma a superpower

“Marvel’s Jessica Jones,” the second Marvel Studios property to be led by a female character, is best described by explaining what it is not. It’s a comic-book show, but it’s not your average comic-book show. It stars a superhero, but she’s not your average superhero. And it’s about good guys beating up bad guys, but not in the classic caped-crusader airborne battle. “Jessica Jones” is instead a story of one superhero in a hostile world—a single character’s slice in what is otherwise a sprawling, Technicolor supernatural universe. Even in the original comics the show is based on, Jessica Jones is defined by her difference from the rest of Marvel’s superheroes. She left the Avengers to be a private eye, starting her own detective agency, Alias Investigations. It helps that she can break padlocks with one hand, but her greatest asset isn’t super-strength, it’s her tenacity. And she doesn’t have a superhero alterego; if anything, she prefers the shadows to the limelight.

This is why, if you’re a newcomer to comic books, or even just not that interested in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, “Jessica Jones,” now available on Netflix, could still be for you. Aside from the fact that a few people in the story have extraordinary abilities, there are no costumes, no aliens and no easy answers. Jessica (Krysten Ritter, in the show) doesn’t run around and save the day for other people; she works cases while trying to untangle the mess that is her own life. Much like Veronica Mars, that other cult-favorite noir-ish private eye, Jessica is carrying around a central, unspoken mystery, a horrible trauma that she is barely able to live with. The story of the first season of “Jessica Jones” is that the perpetrator of the trauma—a mind-controlling psychopath named Kilgrave (David Tennant)—is looking for Jessica, and has just finally found her again.

The show is not, unfortunately, perfect. Ritter is perfect, Tennant is perfect, and the bones of the story—which come from the comics’ creators, Brian Michael Bendis and Michael Gaydos—are still completely chilling. Kilgrave made Jessica his puppet for a whole month, making her his ideal and subservient romantic partner. The word “rape” is not used until Episode 8, but it is clear, from the start, that Jessica is a trauma survivor. She copes with alcohol and insomnia; no one gets close to her, and she doesn’t get too close to anyone. The superpowers make the story bigger, broader and more tangible—Kilgrave doesn’t just bully people to doing what he wants, he gets into their heads and makes it so—but the story is very human, just the same. “Jessica Jones” is that rare genre story that uses the supernatural not to obfuscate, but instead to better illustrate a human story. And as a result, it’s an extraordinary meditation on violence perpetuated by men against women, whether that is rape, stalking, harassment or abuse. Kilgrave dabbles in all of them, and Tennant’s mad-happy performance conveys both the charisma and appeal of the abuser and his frightening, sudden ability to shift to violence.

Most horrifyingly, Kilgrave’s power is impossible to prove to the outside world. The wounds he causes are technically “self-inflicted”—in one of his most horrible acts, he orders two attendants to rip the skin off of each other’s faces if he doesn’t come back in two hours. Jessica spends most of the season trying not to stop Kilgrave but to prove that he is responsible; one of the most awful recurring themes of “Jessica Jones” is how unreliable the huddled masses are. The very people Jessica is trying to save don’t believe her, and then quickly fall under Kilgrave’s spell. Jessica’s life becomes a struggle to get anyone to believe that she was raped—all too familiar—while her abuser somehow charms everyone around her into smiling acquiescence. And recovering from the nightmares, addiction and isolation of post-traumatic stress, in “Jessica Jones,” is not an internal struggle, but a car-tossing, body-slamming conflict. Kilgrave alternates between seductive and deadly, and in his quest to get Jessica willingly back to his side—like most rapists, he denies having actually raped her, insisting she was into it on some level—he tries to worm his way under her skin in other ways, creating horrible dioramas for her to walk into and deal with. At one point, he reconstructs her childhood home; at another, he walks her into a restaurant where half the occupants have nooses around their necks. It’s a funhouse of horror; which is to say, it is the life of a trauma survivor.


Hillary Clinton knew American Mali terrorist attack victim

Washington (CNN)Former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton on Saturday mourned the lone identified American Mali terrorist attack victim, whom she knew from her Senate days.

Anita Datar, 41, perished in the Mali hotel siege on Friday. She's the only American known to have died in the attack. A former Peace Corp worker in Senegal, Datar was in Mali on an international development project. The casualty hit home for Clinton, the Democratic presidential front-runner and senator from New York for eight years.

"I knew Anita as the loving mother of a wonderful seven-year old boy and the former partner of David Garten, one of my senior policy advisors in the Senate," Clinton said in a statement. "My prayers are with the Datar and Garten families, especially Anita and David's son. My heart breaks thinking of the burden he will now bear on his small shoulders and the courage he will have to show in the days ahead."

"As I said this week, America must wage and win an immediate battle against ISIS, al Qaeda, and other terrorist networks, as well as a generational struggle against radical jihadism," Clinton added. "We face a choice between fear and resolve. Anita's murder should deepen our resolve. American must lead the world to meet this threat."

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