It really is becoming an epidemic of stupidity:
Two DeKalb County police officers have been placed on paid administrative leave after an investigation revealed they ran a background check on President Barack Obama.
A representative for the DeKalb County CEO’s office identified the officers as Ryan White and C.M. Route.
I guess they missed that whole thing last year with State Department employees accessing records on Obama, Clinton and McCain? Just the lack of judgment on the part of these officers is alarming enough. What ever law this violates they should be given the maximum penalty on. They have abused their power, betrayed the public trust and betrayed their oath to uphold the law. That is inexcusable.
There has been some disturbing developments on the healthcare battle. First we are seeing the normal GOP ploy when it comes to “bipartisanship” in that their definition of the word means they get everything they want and the Democrats pass it. Case in point – Senator Mike Enzi (R-Wyo):
“I also need commitments from Senator Reid and Speaker Pelosi, as well as the Administration, that the bipartisan agreements reached in the Finance Committee will survive in a final bill that goes to the President.”
The whole notion of “elections have consequences” just seems to fly over the heads of the GOP. Joe Sudbay has more on this.
Next we see a new battle brewing with Senate Democrats, and this is one battle I can get behind:
In an apparent warning to Senate Finance Committee Chairman Max Baucus (D-Mont.), some liberal Democrats have suggested a secret-ballot vote every two years on whether or not to strip committee chairmen of their gavels.
Baucus, who is more conservative than most of the Democratic Conference, has frustrated many of his liberal colleagues by negotiating for weeks with Republicans over healthcare reform without producing a bill or even much detail about the policies he is considering.
“Every two years the caucus could have a secret ballot on whether a chairman should continue, yes or no,” said Sen. Tom Harkin (D-Iowa), the chairman of the Senate Agriculture Committee. “If the ‘no’s win, [the chairman’s] out.
There has been a lot of talk about Justin Barrett, a police officer with Boston. He made fame yesterday when it was exposed that he wrote a letter to the media and referred to Henry Gates as a “banana eating jungle monkey'”. if you missed it, here’s the run down:
The law enforcement official, speaking on the condition of anonymity, said Officer Justin Barrett referred to the black scholar as a " jungle monkey" in the letter, written in reaction to media coverage of Gates's arrest July 16.
Barrett, a 36-year-old who has been on the job for two years, was stripped of his gun and badge yesterday and faces a termination hearing in the next week, said police spokeswoman Elaine Driscoll. He has no previous disciplinary record, she said.
Barrett will be represented by the police union in his hearing, as he should be. This gets into a very iffy area of our first amendment rights. One way he may have stripped himself of that protection though is by identifying himself as a police officer in his “anonymous” email.
But there is something more interesting here. In Barrett’s letter he made a statement that should be a warning sign that a person does not understand the very fundamental’s of our nation’s laws:
I had noticed that Rasmussen seemed to change their way they track presidential approvals once Obama took office.
Rasmussen had always had a variable approval rating system. They ask if you strongly approve, somewhat approve, somewhat disapprove or strongly disapprove of the President’s performance. On the surface that doesn’t seem to bad, but during Bush’s term they always combined both approval numbers and disapproval numbers and used that. I remember during Katrina people making a deal over Bush having a 46% approval from Rasmussen, but a vast majority of that number came from the “somewhat approve” category – something people trend more to state.
Now during Obama’s presidency they have changed it. Instead they take the different between strongly approve and strongly disapprove and that is their new “presidential index”. Let’s take today’s numbers:
Obama is given a –12 approval index. That sounds really bad, but if this was done under Bush’s term then Rasmussen would be saying Bush has a 48% approval rating. The later sounds much better.
Sure Obama’s numbers are in trouble right now, but that’s to be expected. People seem out to compare this to the same point in Bush’s presidency. Well at this point in Bush’s first term he was on vacation, something he did quiet a bit. It’s much safer for a President to not do anything, than one being active and trying to fix all the problems he was left with.
Reports are that Microsoft and Yahoo have sealed the deal for Microsoft to offer their new Bing search engine as the default search engine for Yahoo. In my opinion this should give Google something to worry about. Bing is a very nice search engine. Microsoft finally broke out of their stagnant web presence with the new search engine, and now Google’s main competitor will use it.
Of course Google is so far ahead of Microsoft in other web services that I don’t know if it will pose as much of a threat as people are expecting. I really like Bing, but I still use Google for 99% of my searches. It isn’t a matter of preference, but rather a force of habit. Also we can expect to see Google take the nice benefits of Bing and improve on them. It’s all part of the competition that goes on daily in the internet business.
I am actually glad we are still talking about the arrest of Professor Gates. Not only is the race issue being opened up, but there is much more here than people are realizing – the reach of the long arm of the law.
On the race issue, I don’t think anyone can pass judgment on Officer Crowley as to whether he did what he did out of racism or something else. It’s just too complicated of an issue to delve into the depths of people’s minds. Of course if this ends up seeing a courtroom, I think the cards might be stacked against Crowley, and that is by his own hand. In the police report Crowley stated that the 911 caller identified the men as black. The 911 tapes prove otherwise. In fact she said she thought one might be Latino. So why did Crowley put this in the report? A lot of people took that report as gospel, but somehow this key piece of evidence seems to be overlooked.
I don’t think Crowley deliberately lied on the report. I have spent countless hours writing fire and squad reports and its hard keeping all the facts straight in your mind, but if this does end up in court you can expect any lawyer Gates has to push Crowley on the issue.
That’s how a group of cancer experts are now classifying tanning beds:
International cancer experts have moved tanning beds and other sources of ultraviolet radiation into the top cancer risk category, deeming them as deadly as arsenic and mustard gas. For years, scientists have described tanning beds and ultraviolet radiation as "probable carcinogens."
A new analysis of about 20 studies concludes the risk of skin cancer jumps by 75 percent when people start using tanning beds before age 30. Experts also found that all types of ultraviolet radiation caused worrying mutations in mice, proof the radiation is carcinogenic. Previously, only one type of ultraviolet radiation was thought to be lethal.
The new classification means tanning beds and other sources of ultraviolet radiation are definite causes of cancer, alongside tobacco, the hepatitis B virus and chimney sweeping, among others.
It amazes me how many people depend on tanning beds to “look good”. A couple of weeks I heard the life squad get dispatched to a twelve year old girl who was unconscious and had a bad rash after being in a tanning bed. Instantly I thought “why in the hell is a 12 year old girl in a tanning bed?” It’s the middle of summer and if she wants a tan do what I did – go outside. Hell you might even get some exercise while at it.
Here in Ohio there is legislation in the works to outlaw tanning beds for children under 18. This is a great step and considering the lethality of tanning beds is now equivalent to that of cigarettes, its only safe to assume the same limitations should apply to both. I just wonder how strong the tanning bed lobby is.
This just left me speechless, even for something coming from Beck’s mouth:
This can only be chalked up as hate propaganda being pushed by a major news network. Just yesterday a man was convicted of making racially charged threats against President Obama. What comes out of Beck’s mouth is nothing but fuel for people like this.