maxomai: dog (dog)
EDIT August 4, 2016: Strickland has since been indicted by a grand jury on 10 counts of unlawful use of a weapon, 10 counts of menacing, and one count of disorderly conduct. I still think he's being over-charged on each count of unlawful use of a weapon, as per below.

As delighted as I am the Michael Strickland (of Laughing-at-Liberals and Asshole-who-pulled-a-gun-at-the-BLM-march fame) was charged with two counts of Unlawful Use of a Weapon, my guess is that he will almost certainly see those particular charges go away.

There are two ways one can commit Unlawful Use of a Weapon (per ORS 166.220):

1) "Attempts to use unlawfully against another, or carries or possesses with intent to use unlawfully against another, any dangerous or deadly weapon as defined in ORS 161.015"

2) "Intentionally discharges a firearm, blowgun, bow and arrow, crossbow or explosive device within the city limits of any city or within residential areas within urban growth boundaries at or in the direction of any person, building, structure or vehicle within the range of the weapon without having legal authority for such discharge."

He didn't discharge his firearm, so (2) is out, leaving (1). And that's where it gets interesting. The prosecution has to argue that Michael Strickland either (a) carried a firearm with the intention of using it unlawfully, or (b) that he attempted to use it unlawfully when he pulled it. Now, they have to demonstrate mens rea, or intent. And that's going to be a pain in the ass.

If I had to guess, if the prosecution is serious about arguing their case, they will focus on the fact that Strickland had five extra magazines on him (for a total of about 80-100 rounds, including the ones in his gun), and argue that was excessive. But given the other charges (menacing and disorderly conduct), this looks like the prosecution over-charged him for being a troublemaker. As much as I despise Michael Strickland, that kind of behavior from a prosecutor can't stand. I doubt a judge or jury will disagree, even in liberal Portland.

As usual, IANAL, I just obsess over this stuff.
maxomai: dog (dog)
Last Friday a disgruntled high school student armed himself, went to his school, and went on a rampage that ended with himself dead and with a classmate fighting for her life. Naturally, after such an event, our sensible people ask what could have been done to stop this madness from happening again.

Consider the following:

  • An assault weapons ban wouldn't have prevented the shooting. The shooter had a pump-action shotgun that would not be covered under the proposed bans.

  • Since the shotgun had a fixed, internal magazine, the magazine ban wouldn't have applied, either.

  • Absent of evidence of a history of mental illness, universal background checks wouldn't have prevented the shooting. The shooter was 18, and he bought the shotgun legally, after a background check, from a gun store.

  • Nor is there any indication that a waiting period would have stopped him. Reports are that he waited a week after purchasing the shotgun to go on his rampage. This was not an impulsive act. It was deliberate and malicious.


So, in total, none of the gun control measures that have been proposed by Serious People in the last year would have done anything to keep that shotgun out of the shooter's hands. To keep him from obtaining that shotgun, we would have had to propose, and pass, much more restrictive measures. At minimum, we would have had to require a mental health evaluation before the shooter was allowed to buy - an evaluation designed so that an agitated, disgruntled person would fail. Other, more restrictive measures, such as locking the guns away or simply banning firearms altogether, might also have worked, but had no better chance of passing.

Nonetheless, take away his shotgun, and the shooter would have likely gone on a rampage anyway. He had three gasoline bombs and a machete in addition to the shotgun; any of those would have been at least as gruesome and lethal as a shotgun blast. (In fact, he used one gasoline bomb to burn a substantial part of the library. By the way, each of those bombs was a violation of Federal law on its own that carries serious prison time. He didn't care.)

However, there was one measure that was suggested after Newton that Arapahoe had in place, and that measure almost certainly saved lives. That measure kept the rampage from doing more damage, and led to it ending roughly eighty seconds after it began. Arapahoe had a sheriff's deputy on the premises acting as a School Resource Officer. That deputy identified himself as a law enforcement officer and confronted the attacker in the library. The shooter then ended his own life.

To put it more succinctly, in this specific case, the gun control crowd was wrong, and the NRA's Wayne LaPierre, for all his Uncle Molesty creepiness, was right.

Which brings us to the topic that the title of this post promised: what could have prevented this tragedy?

As I stated after Sandy Hook, there has to be a conversation about why violence is an acceptable way to validate one's masculinity. Right now, one of the accepted ways to affirm one's manhood after one's pride is wounded is to commit acts of violence. If you're powerless, it's a demonstration of power. If you've been slighted at work or school, it's a way to avenge the slight. It's been a year and we STILL haven't had that discussion. And then an 18-year-old boy needed to assuage his wounded pride, and he used a shotgun and gasoline bombs to do it. If he had chosen another path - such as showing up the idiot teacher with a perfect score at the next meet - he'd still be alive, and his classmate wouldn't be fighting for her life in the hospital.

We need to have that conversation about masculinity. Without that conversation, it doesn't matter whether we ban guns completely. The violence will continue, in our schools, our workplaces, and our streets.
maxomai: dog (dog)
maxomai: dog (dog)

  • Russia has proposed a system that hands Syria's chemical weapons over to the UN. I've been saying that Assad is Russia's puppet and we should let Russia handle him. Well, Russia's handling him. We should support Russia, instead of trying to send a message to Iran.

  • George Zimmerman appears to have dodged the proverbial bullet again, this time in his domestic dispute with his wife. Let me state once again that the pro-Second Amendment community should disavow this asshole. He's a damned lucky moron, but he's a moron nonetheless, and any support for him will continue to backfire in increasingly worse ways.

  • Time Magazine on the importance - the absolutely critical importance - of [livejournal.com profile] navalny's campaign for Mayorship of Moscow to the future of Russian democracy, here.

  • I just finished Liber AL vel Legis: The Book of the Law. An Examination of Liber XXXI and Liber CCXX. I have to say that the Gillis essay on the Kill/Fill discussion is compelling. It's almost compelling enough to make me change my mind that the edit violates Aiwass's commandment to "change not the style of the letter." Almost. I hope every local body takes the time to put this on their shelves.

  • FaceBook is trying to one-up Twitter. I wish they would try to one-up LiveJournal, such as by letting you print your FB as a PDF book. LiveJournal has had that capability for over a decade.

  • This Kickstarter for Spiri - a cheap, autonomous, programmable quadrocopter - is almost at it's $125,000 goal. I supported it at the "I get a robot!" level. If you're a tech geek, then you should back it too!

maxomai: dog (dog)
Today and tomorrow, Colorado voters are casting ballots in two recall elections after the Democratic Party-run government passed a slate of stupid and odious gun control laws. Both sides are claiming urgency in this election, lefties because they want to beat the NRA, righties because they want to beat the movement for more gun control.

Early voting is a bit scary looking right now for the Democrats. Nonetheless, a Quinnipiac poll from August 22nd gives one reason to believe that the recall will fail.

Voters say 54 - 35 percent that State Senate President John Morse should not be removed from office because of his support for stricter gun control, the independent Quinnipiac (KWIN- uh-pe-ack) University poll finds. Voters also say 52 - 36 percent that State Sen. Angela Giron should not be recalled because of her support for stricter gun control.

Colorado voters say 60 - 31 percent that when people don't agree with a legislator, they should wait for reelection, rather than attempt a recall.

While Republicans support both recall efforts by margins of 2 - 1, only 47 percent support the overall concept of recall, while 42 percent say wait for reelection.

All voters oppose 54 - 40 percent the stricter new gun control laws which led to the recall effort. Democrats support the stricter laws 78 - 16 percent, while opposition is 89 - 7 percent among Republicans and 56 - 39 percent among independent voters. Women are divided on the stricter laws 48 - 45 percent, with men opposed 64 - 33 percent.


The implications for John Morse and Angela Giron are good for this election. And, chances are pretty good that they'll win re-election during their next regular election, too.

The greater problem for Democrats may come in 2016. Yes, yes, the next Presidential election is three years away. Still, look at this Q-poll from two days later:

Chris Christie (R) 43% (44%)
Hillary Clinton (D) 42% (41%)

Hillary Clinton (D) 45%
Ted Cruz (R) 42%

Chris Christie (R) 50% (48%)
Joe Biden (D) 33% (32%)

Ted Cruz (R) 45%
Joe Biden (D) 39%

The problem isn't that Colorado is a purple state that's going to be close for Democrats. Colorado has been that way for two decades or more. No, the problem is that national polling has Clinton just crushing both Christie and Cruz. Colorado....doesn't. This, plus the low approval for Morse and Giron in the other Q-poll, make it clear that, while voters might not like the recall, they don't like the Democrats very much right now, either. Governor Hickenlooper, in particular, is in trouble, specifically over gun control. Earlier this year, he was cruising to another term as Governor.

The moral of this story is that you don't push New England-style gun control laws in a purple Western state. You just don't.
maxomai: dog (dog)
maxomai: dog (dog)
Gun control advocates will point to Australia as a model for gun control, pointing out that a Sandy Hook-style mass shootings haven't occurred since they pushed for mass confiscation of firearms and strict licensing of firearm owners.

That is true - so far.

However, these measures haven't done much to control Australia's out of control problem of gun violence between gang members. And I wouldn't expect them to work on America's gang violence problem, either, which, we must admit, is a much larger problem in terms of lives and treasure than the mass shooting problem.

So...now what?
maxomai: dog (dog)
Quoting Politico:

“I’ve had at least five senators call me and say, ‘Can’t we do something about this?’” Biden said. “The calculus has changed, and so we’re in an effort to try to work out how we can provide another opportunity for those who voted no to change their vote. We all know that’s the hardest thing in politics, to change your vote. That’s why we’ve got to get a rationale, another reason why this could be done by changing the specifics of the legislation.”

Biden hasn’t conveyed which senators he’s spoken with or how the background checks bill might be altered.


I have my doubts that Biden actually has 60 votes, or that the calculus has changed that much since the first bill failed. The only major change, other than the declining support for new gun control measures, is Michael Bloomberg's willingness to buy elections. So, who could he buy in order to get them to switch their vote?

Read more... )

That said, all of this is idle speculation. Nobody is going to switch their vote to help pass a universal background check bill unless Bloomberg's money is an unqualified benefit for their re-election, and nobody on the list of "no" votes meets that criterion. The reason for this is simple: the vote in the Senate is purely symbolic. Whatever gun control measure passes the Senate is dead on arrival in the Republican-controlled House, which is likely to stay in Republican hands until 2023.

In other words, it's actually pretty likely that Biden is just spinning tales to keep the base enthusiastic.
maxomai: dog (dog)

  • Turks are rioting in Istanbul after the government tried to violently quash omnibus protests. So much for that! And yes, this does affect America's ability to form a coalition in their Syrian proxy war, which might be a possible motivation for renewed claims of WMD use.

  • Have you noticed that, since Sandy Hook, more television shows (like Burn Notice and Psych) have referred to fully automatic weapons as "semi-automatic?" I have, and I wonder how much the White House is paying those shows to push their messaging. It wouldn't be the first time the government has done this.

  • SCOTUS rules that Arizona must accept Federal voter ID standards and can't impose their own, more strict and odious standards. The Federal standard requires that one swears out an affidavit that one is a US citizen. That's it. No trying to find birth certificates and marriage licenses from the days before they kept archival grade copies of records, no de-facto poll taxes, no fooling around. It'll be interesting to see how hard other states (Georgia, Wisconsin) fight this.

  • Chicago just had its deadliest weekend so far this year - at least six dead, 40 shot overall. Second Amendment advocates will point out that this happened in the city with the strictest gun control laws in the nation, and that it demonstrates the futility of banning guns. Fair enough, but it also points to the necessity of a framework to address the flow of guns into the hands of gangbangers. Universal background checks were supposed to be a part of that, if only because it gave the police another hammer with which to beat gun traffickers.

  • A woman is suing the McDonald's she worked at because they would only pay her with a pre-paid debit card. It's not just that the debit card is heavy on fees, by the way; it's that it's her only option. Even direct deposit to an other account, or being paid by check, were not open to her. This needs to be nipped in the bud now before owing your soul to the company bank becomes the future for low-wage workers.

maxomai: dog (dog)
Why am I posting on LiveJournal on a bright sunny day like today? Because too much sunshine makes maxomai cranky, that's why. Besides which, I have things to say.


  • Justin Raimondo calls out the Obama-can-do-no-wrong crowd on warrantless wiretapping. But, shouldn't we trust Obama because he's a good man at heart? No, we shouldn't. He might be a good man, but the office of the President doesn't need that kind of power, regardless of who's in the office.

  • Why on Earth would the US Navy balk at naming a Littoral combat ship the USS Liberty? The depressing facts here.

  • Via [livejournal.com profile] takwish comes news that the discovery of "wild" Monsanto wheat in Oregon may sink the wheat market for the Pacific Northwest as our export market in Asia shuts its doors. If true, that would be very bad news for PNW farmers. It's also bad news for Portland's economy, as all that wheat normally goes out through the Port of Portland.

  • I feel awful for these parents, absolutely awful.

    "I found a receipt that said 'Shotgun $865,'" she said. ...

    Blaec, who had been committed seven times, "legally bought an assault weapon legally from the place [the Wal-Mart] he had walked into with a butcher knife," Bill added.

    The reason: Blaec was never involuntarily committed to a mental institution by the courts, so no mental health record turned up on the background check.

    A day after discovering the receipt, Tricia contacted police, who arrested Blaec. He allegedly confessed that he planned to open fire that weekend at Wal-Mart and also considered targeting the local movie theater.

    On turning in her own son to the police, Tricia said: "My first thought was, 'What have I done? I just destroyed my son's life.' And people would come up to me and say, 'No, you saved our lives.'"


    Indeed, they probably saved many lives. But the mental health system failed their son, and the NICS background check system almost failed the rest of us, which points to the need to reform both.

  • Badass Theater Company lives up to its name with its inaugural production, Invasion! - I'll write a full review later, but trust me, if you live in Portland and you're reading this, get your tickets NOW. You'll thank me later.

maxomai: dog (dog)
Earlier today, I linked to this post by Jeff Mapes of the Oregonian regarding possible gun legislation in this legislative session. His read on it was that something was in the works, based in part on Senator Betsy Johnson's remarks:

But senators are continuing to talk about the issue behind the scenes, and it appears that Johnson is amenable to a compromise, particularly on what she calls, in a recent Facebook post, "reasonable gun background check legislation."


This got the Oregon Firearms Federation all riled up.

Senator Betsy Johnson, who until now has been a solid “no” on new gun restrictions, appears to be changing her mind.

After a stint away from the Capitol due to a car accident, she has said she is open to a “reasonable background check bill.”

NY billionaire Michael Bloomberg just dropped over a million dollars in Nevada to ram through this kind of new attack on gun rights. And we know he’s planning to spend heavily here in Oregon.


Well, Senator Betsy Johnson has responded with an email, and her answer, basically, is that it's all bullpucky.

Read more... )

It's possible, of course, that Johnson is lying here. After all, she's a politician, and such persons are known to bend the truth a bit. But odds are, now, that further legislation is off the table, and that Jeff Mapes and the OFF are making much ado about nothing.
maxomai: dog (dog)
maxomai: dog (dog)
The Illinois House just passed Illinois's Concealed Carry bill, as required of them by a Federal court ruling. Get information from the "horse's mouth" here, but there's a good summary here.

In a nutshell: this bill establishes shall-issue concealed carry rules for Illinois, allows non-residents to obtain concealed carry licenses, and limits what counties and municipalities can do in the way of gun control. Cook County and Chicago cannot ban assault weapons, for example. On the other hand, concealed carry will still be forbidden in a host of public places, including busses and trains.

There's going to be a lot of gnashing of teeth around this bill. The Governor is opposed to this bill, as are the major Chicago newspapers, and I suspect most Chicagoans feel exactly the same way. Frankly, I predict that this bill, should it become law, will have no effect on crime whatsoever. It won't turn Chicago into the Wild West any more than Portland and Seattle are the Wild West today. (Both Oregon and Washington have shall-issue concealed carry laws.)
maxomai: dog (Default)
So, the Senate voted today on a number of amendments to an anti-gun bill, and the end result was a string of failures that left the gun rights side elated and the gun control side fuming mad. It seems that in just a few weeks we've gone from universal background checks, to limited background checks, to jack shit.

Ultimately what we saw today was the end result of a months long battle of political wills. The gun control side had their members fully engaged but not fully organized. The gun rights side had their people fully engaged, and organized. And, despite the gun control side having better PR, the gun rights side had the better tactics this round. By choosing to fight on the issue of background checks - which should have been common ground - they made an assault weapons and magazine ban out of reach for the foreseeable future. They they made even background checks politically unpalatable. As such, not only has nothing happened, but even getting legislation that should have passed to establish universal background checks is going to take a major effort of years.

The gun control side made two major tactical blunders early in this fight.

First, they came in immediately with heated rhetoric in order to alienate people from the NRA. This had basically no effect on the gun control side, which was already engaged, but it had plenty of effect on the gun rights side, which went from demoralized and confused in December to pissed off and engaged by February.

Second, the gun control side - unwittingly - created a major example of how gun control legislation could go wrong, by passing draconian measures in New York State. Even though similar laws were never on the table, let alone feasible, on a Federal level, the notion that New York State could be repeated everywhere became a potent rallying cry.

So, that's where we're at. But, as the President, points out, this is just round one. The GOP controls the House and most of the Governors' mansions, but the Democrats probably have the White House until 2024. We've seen what the Senate can do - basically nothing. Right now, the gun control side has a better PR effort, but the gun rights side has more intensity.

In the short run, gun control is done on a federal level. There are still state measures under discussion, but we're going to see more gun rights measures pass than gun control measures. In the mid run - over the next ten years - we'll probably see universal background checks and minimum requirements for concealed carry licenses. In the long run, the tendency is toward erosion of Second Amendment rights, the last decade notwithstanding, and I think we can expect that trend to continue.

In any case, my prediction, that an assault weapons ban would not pass, has come to fruition.
maxomai: (typewriter guy wtf)
So, we know the story about freshly minted gun control advocate Mark Kelly buying an AR-15, right? He was on his way to pick up a .45 when he saw a used AR-15 in the store. He picked up the rifle on the spot to turn it back in to the Tuscon AZ PD.

Turns out it's mostly bullshit.

And while I don't trust Brietbart, they are, for once, right about Arizona requiring police departments to re-sell guns turned over to them.

I think what's really going on is that Mark Kelly wanted an AR-15 and saw a cheap one. So he bought it. As far as I'm concerned, there's nothing wrong with that. In fact, the only thing wrong with what he did is that it shot a hole in the narrative of the gun control crowd.
maxomai: dog (Default)
It's Friday, and for most of us the work day is over, either just so or hours ago. Which means that we have time to sit back, relax, visit with friends, and ask ourselves that important question - who lost the week?

For my part, I believe that the Massachusetts Republican Party lost the week. I blogged about this earlier, but the Reader's Digest edition is that Scott Brown dropped out of the special election to take the Senate seat vacated by John Kerry. Before that decision, PPP had him as the front runner. Afterwards, the Republicans basically have nobody that can win that seat. Ed Markey will be the next Senator from Massachusetts if he can get his act together.

Honorable (yes, honorable mention) goes to those of us hoping for universal background checks. I believe the NRA signaled in their Senate testimony that they are going to score the vote for such background checks. If so, I think this is a stupid and pathetic move on the part of the NRA - coming out in support of universal background checks would have done something to salvage their image while contributing favorably to the problem of black market handguns in the inner cities. Unfortunately, they don't seem to agree, and so now the GOP faces a choice. They can buck the NRA and suffer the short term consequences in the next round of primaries, or stick with the NRA and suffer the long term consequences in the next few general elections. I still retain some hope that they'll do the right thing and not score universal background checks, but it's a thin hope right now.

A strong case can be made that everyone - and I mean everyone in the world - lost this week after Al Qaeda torched an ancient library in Timbuktu destroying thousands of priceless books and scrolls going back to the 13th Century. Because, you know, they have to destroy Islam in order to save it.

Dishonorable mention goes to Elect A New Congress SuperPAC, which ate the WRONG browniesposted a bizarre rant calling on people to boycott Beyonce and "this Jay-Z fellow" during their Super Bowl half time show, which said SuperPAC promises will be, and I quote, "in praise and celebration of the modern criminal police state," and, "completely at odds with liberty and in complete odds with me." This is in stark contrast to the previous year's Halftime show, which the SuperPAC founder called the "Satanic/Illuminati Super Bowl Half-Time Show.” I tuned in expecting just that, and was sorely disappointed.

Dishonorable mention also goes to Manti Te'o and Taylor Swift, jointly, for making me wonder whose love life is worse.

Another dishonorable mention goes to the People of New Jersey. As if they didn't suffer enough from Chris Christie, Hurrican Sandy, and the entire cast of the Jersey Shore, now they have to suffer one of the worst indignities of all - Geraldo Rivera running for Senate. If Jersey were a person, their autobiography would be the Book of Job.

But now I leave it to you, dear readers. Who do you think lost the week?
maxomai: dog (Default)
It's Friday, and for most of us the work day is over, either just so or hours ago. Which means that we have time to sit back, relax, visit with friends, and ask ourselves that important question - who lost the week?

For my part, I believe that the Massachusetts Republican Party lost the week. I blogged about this earlier, but the Reader's Digest edition is that Scott Brown dropped out of the special election to take the Senate seat vacated by John Kerry. Before that decision, PPP had him as the front runner. Afterwards, the Republicans basically have nobody that can win that seat. Ed Markey will be the next Senator from Massachusetts if he can get his act together.

Honorable (yes, honorable mention) goes to those of us hoping for universal background checks. I believe the NRA signaled in their Senate testimony that they are going to score the vote for such background checks. If so, I think this is a stupid and pathetic move on the part of the NRA - coming out in support of universal background checks would have done something to salvage their image while contributing favorably to the problem of black market handguns in the inner cities. Unfortunately, they don't seem to agree, and so now the GOP faces a choice. They can buck the NRA and suffer the short term consequences in the next round of primaries, or stick with the NRA and suffer the long term consequences in the next few general elections. I still retain some hope that they'll do the right thing and not score universal background checks, but it's a thin hope right now.

Dishonorable mention goes to Elect A New Congress SuperPAC, which ate the WRONG browniesposted a bizarre rant calling on people to boycott Beyonce and "this Jay-Z fellow" during their Super Bowl half time show, which said SuperPAC promises will be, and I quote, "in praise and celebration of the modern criminal police state," and, "completely at odds with liberty and in complete odds with me." This is in stark contrast to the previous year's Halftime show, which the SuperPAC founder called the "Satanic/Illuminati Super Bowl Half-Time Show.” I tuned in expecting just that, and was sorely disappointed.

Dishonorable mention also goes to Manti Te'o and Taylor Swift, jointly, for making me wonder whose love life is worse.

Another dishonorable mention goes to the People of New Jersey. As if they didn't suffer enough from Chris Christie, Hurrican Sandy, and the entire cast of the Jersey Shore, now they have to suffer one of the worst indignities of all - Geraldo Rivera running for Senate. If Jersey were a person, their autobiography would be the Book of Job.

But now I leave it to you, dear readers. Who do you think lost the week?
maxomai: dog (Default)
It's Friday, and for most of us the work day is over, either just so or hours ago. Which means that we have time to sit back, relax, visit with friends, and ask ourselves that important question - who lost the week?

For my part, I believe that the Massachusetts Republican Party lost the week. I blogged about this earlier, but the Reader's Digest edition is that Scott Brown dropped out of the special election to take the Senate seat vacated by John Kerry. Before that decision, PPP had him as the front runner. Afterwards, the Republicans basically have nobody that can win that seat. Ed Markey will be the next Senator from Massachusetts if he can get his act together.

Honorable (yes, honorable mention) goes to those of us hoping for universal background checks. I believe the NRA signaled in their Senate testimony that they are going to score the vote for such background checks. If so, I think this is a stupid and pathetic move on the part of the NRA - coming out in support of universal background checks would have done something to salvage their image while contributing favorably to the problem of black market handguns in the inner cities. Unfortunately, they don't seem to agree, and so now the GOP faces a choice. They can buck the NRA and suffer the short term consequences in the next round of primaries, or stick with the NRA and suffer the long term consequences in the next few general elections. I still retain some hope that they'll do the right thing and not score universal background checks, but it's a thin hope right now.

A strong case can be made that everyone - and I mean everyone in the world - lost this week after Al Qaeda torched an ancient library in Timbuktu destroying thousands of priceless books and scrolls going back to the 13th Century. Because, you know, they have to destroy Islam in order to save it.

Dishonorable mention goes to Elect A New Congress SuperPAC, which ate the WRONG browniesposted a bizarre rant calling on people to boycott Beyonce and "this Jay-Z fellow" during their Super Bowl half time show, which said SuperPAC promises will be, and I quote, "in praise and celebration of the modern criminal police state," and, "completely at odds with liberty and in complete odds with me." This is in stark contrast to the previous year's Halftime show, which the SuperPAC founder called the "Satanic/Illuminati Super Bowl Half-Time Show.” I tuned in expecting just that, and was sorely disappointed.

Dishonorable mention also goes to Manti Te'o and Taylor Swift, jointly, for making me wonder whose love life is worse.

Another dishonorable mention goes to the People of New Jersey. As if they didn't suffer enough from Chris Christie, Hurrican Sandy, and the entire cast of the Jersey Shore, now they have to suffer one of the worst indignities of all - Geraldo Rivera running for Senate. If Jersey were a person, their autobiography would be the Book of Job.

But now I leave it to you, dear readers. Who do you think lost the week?
maxomai: dog (Default)
To my mind, the big loser this week was the mentally ill of New York State. Now when they go to the shrink to talk about why they want to kill themselves or others, they end up being reported to the State. How many of them are going to put off therapy to avoid getting a black mark on their permanent record?

That said, there are a number of dishonorable mentions that are more deserving, even if they aren't losing as badly.

Take Manti Te'o for example. The Notre Dame linebacker, by far the best defensive player in college football, is on his way to the NFL and a multi-million dollar paycheck. Unfortunately, he, the Notre Dame Football organization, and the professional sports media nationwide, were all sucked in by the tear-jerking story of a brilliant girlfriend at Stanford who died of cancer. I say sucked in, because the whole story turns out to be an elaborate hoax, which was uncovered by a website earlier this week. One could argue that they are all the week's losers, and I would not disagree.

New Orleans Ex-Mayor Ray Nagin deserves dishonorable mention, of course. The former mayor, who was originally elected on an anti-corruption platform, was just indicted today - for corruption. Gotta love New Orleans.

Another huge dishonorable mention goes to the officials who oversaw the Seahawks-Falcons game. Okay, arguably the Seahawks were the loser, but the dishonor belongs to the officials, after the Seahawks lost the game, and ended their season, after a bad call gave the Falcons another shot at a missed, last-minute field goal. To put it mildly, my Facebook friends were displeased.

If you're one of thousands of people trying to purchase high capacity magazines right now, then you're a loser too, because prices are ten times what they used to be. For example: Cheaper Than Dirt had announced a few days ago that magazines were back in stock. The response crashed the website, and a few hours later, they were gone, except for a few Colt magazines selling for over $100 each. If you're one of these buyers, you might want to consider packing it up, selling your overpriced rifles and mags, and following Alphageek's advice: a lever-action .30-30 or .357 rifle with a dot sight is sufficient for your needs.

Finally, if you're one of millions of NoMeansNos fan on the West Coast, then you're one of the week's losers, too, after changes to immigration rules caused them to cancel their tour. They're promising to reschedule for later this year, but the disappointment in the maxomai household was palpable.

Who do you think lost the week?
maxomai: dog (Default)

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