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Perry, Foley, and Ferguson

bad news in threes

This is Dark Cloud on Wednesday, August 20, 2014.

For a Democrat, like myself, a day with a mug shot of Texas Governor Rick Perry in the paper should not be a bad one. It's always good to see yet another loud, baselessly confident Texan get hammered, especially a governor who may run for President. Perry faltered in 2012 because he could only recall two items on his list of three during a debate. But the truly stupid, juvenile, and dubiously thought out indictment of Republican Perry by rival Democrats is one of the worst examples of misusing the criminal code for political gain in recent memory.

I know full well the GOP has done the same, and it's Texas, after all, the state that rounded off Pi to 3, but this isn't tolerable. Every literate Democrat from Alan Dershowitz on down has damned this, and it will hurt at the ballot box if the Democrats remain at this level of stupid. When former Obama advisor David Axelrod says the indictment is "sketchy", and Democratic analyst Doug Schoen calls it "outrageous," and Alan Dershowitz says its right out of Soviet Russia and totalitarian at base, it's a real problem. So, that ruined the day.

But of course the beheading of another American journalist by savage elements of Islamic retrogression coupled with attempted extortion of the US makes it so much worse. There is nothing about this that isn't damning to the perpetrators and doesn't tempt massive, pointless, counterproductive retribution from the US. The dream of watching the murderers with covered faces on television confronted with such a death falling apart in screams and panic presents itself. But as could be predicted, we aren't given to that, and we were not when Daniel Pearl faced the same about a decade back. That's good, in all ways. James Foley was a brave and composed man at his cruel, pointless, death, and that should be his legacy.

There is a second journalist that this terrorist group now called simply the Islamic State announced it will kill on YouTube if the US bombings do not stop. This would indicate that the bombings are working and the IS is fading like all pretend prostheses of the Almighty. The Kurds have regrouped, and are on the offensive along with the supposed military of Iraq. This is good in most ways, but if the US drops a ton of military goods on the Kurds and they use it against Turkey for a free and independent Kurdistan made up of soil currently Turkish, Syrian, and Iraqi it doesn't take much to see the problem. People calling for huge infusions of arms to the various Arab wars at present are dangerously stupid.

Here in Freedom's Land, we celebrate the town that is Ferguson! Ferguson, Missouri! A suburb of St. Louis, Ferguson has been the scene of some retro racist violence in the last week. Apparently a large black youth named Michael Brown, walking down a street, was accosted by and then murdered by a police officer. Brown had no weapon, but was shot six times at relatively close range. Needless to say, people were annoyed, and many years of poor treatment by the police boiled over into riots and pillaging.

Not satisfied with initial public response to the dismissive attitude of the police chief, the powers that be offered up a video taken right before the shooting of Brown in a store and supposedly robbing it, and when confronted by the diminutive owner, showing him against the counter and stomping out. Today, more video of the incident seems to show Brown paying for the items. Of course, as John Oliver pointed out Sunday, whatever happened in the store neither excuses nor explains the murder moments later, especially since the officer in question could not have known about the incident in the store, whichever interpretation you choose.

Missouri state police arrived, and Attorney General Holder will arrive Wednesday, and Governor Nixon - as if we needed any more retro memory - ordered in the National Guard, who have dubious legal basis to be involved at all. Oliver pointed out on his HBO show that out of all the police in a town 66% black, only a few were African America, and there were no blacks in the higher reaches of city government. Ferguson's demographics have changed dramatically in the last decade, and so it's not impossible that there haven't been enough elections to balance out the government, but this assumes the blacks are voting. If not, you know they will this November. As they will in Texas for Perry's successor.