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After the suspect shot one student and missed another, "the teacher at that point was trying to get the students out of the classroom and engaged the shooter – who had numerous rounds of shotgun shells … in his pockets – engaged the suspect in conversation," Kern County Sheriff Don Youngblood said.

“A campus supervisor showed up, was outside the classroom, and together they engaged in conversation with this young man, and at one point he put the shotgun down, and police officers were able to take him into custody,” Youngblood said.

In the midst of awe over the heroism on display in this scary incident in California, Alex Jones and his cabal are sure to point out that it was really Mossad agents what did that shotgun thing and that it didn't happen anyway and was just set up to prove the points gun control advocates are making. Not only did an unarmed teacher talk down a shooter at Taft, but I'm guessing that the fact that the kid had a shotgun instead of a 30 round magazine saved several lives. Also, Megan McArdle will foam at the mouth to know that a bunch of lives were saved by a cowardly teacher shuttling students out of a classroom and talking peacefully rather than encouraging several of his kids to get killed charging the shooter.

Best wishes for a speedy recovery for those who were injured, and here's to an unnamed courageous teacher, teaching us all with his own body about how much teachers really do care about their students, despite the right wing's constant drumbeat that they're all unionized deadbeats collecting paychecks.

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Fri Oct 30, 2009 at 04:43 PM PDT

Hillary in Cat Fight?

by BornAgainDem

The AP has been on the wrong side of a lot of political stories recently, but this offensive little gem really gets some sort of prize. Hillary Clinton has been in Pakistan, confronting perhaps one of our thorniest foreign policy issues, and courageously agreed to a town hall discussion with Pakistanis. Here's the lead paragraph from the Associated Press story:

ISLAMABAD – U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton faced sharp rebukes from Pakistani audiences Friday, including one woman who accused the U.S. of conducting "executions without trial" in aerial drone strikes. Slapping back, Clinton questioned Pakistan's commitment to fighting terrorists.

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Thu Sep 03, 2009 at 09:34 AM PDT

Health Care Rally True Tale

by BornAgainDem

I've told this story to other people and they looked at me like I must be lying, so bear with me. I went to the San Francisco City Hall rally for health care reform yesterday. It was an uncharacteristically warm day, no fog, and we rode our bikes (in shorts even!). Our friend Kelly of CIR/SEIU was there, pregnant as all get out, health care an urgent concern both for her and her doctor/internist constituents.

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I was as happy as anyone else last night about the big victory. I danced in the middle of Valencia street in San Francisco, surrounded by crazy hipsters, college kids, baby boomers, 12 year olds and more of us freaks out here feeling for the first time in our lives like we didn't feel on an island that was separate from the rest of the country. But I woke this morning to the painful feeling that I was celebrating at the wake of some of my closest friends.

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Tue Nov 04, 2008 at 02:16 PM PST

You Can't Call More Than Me

by BornAgainDem

Ok folks, maybe this isn't the most comprehensive diary ever, but didn't want to take too much time from calling to throw out this challenge. If you hate how short and insubstantial it is, then hate me. But one thing you cannot do, you cannot call more than me today. Call for Barack, call for your senator or congressperson. Trust me, you can't do it. I'm up to 75 today, but just getting started. I will blow you away. If you think you can take me keep us updated in comments with number and locations you're calling. Most calls at the end means you are the champion and I bow before you. But it's not going to happen.

Unless these lovely folks in Virginia keep talking to me about how excited they are to vote for Barack! But that's the only way you can beat me. That's my achilles heel. Good luck.


Mon Nov 03, 2008 at 10:48 AM PST

You Can Do Just One More Thing

by BornAgainDem

I first started following this site in 2004, which was also the first year I got involved in electoral politics. Like many of you, it was while participating in a Howard Dean meetup group. My background up until that point had been a little farther to the left. Arrested in several disobedience actions throughout my youth, I was the son of parents who were deeply involved in the radical movements of the'60s. To me, that was just how you engaged politically...the rest was just a tired old machine that required us as axle grease. Sitting in that meetup was the first time I felt a glimmer of how democracy might work, and might reflect the same consensus-based, decentralized structures that had, as much as the issues, attracted me to movement-based politics.  Unlike many on this site, I still think there is great value in protest-based political movements, but in electoral politics I found a lot more people like me. Skeptical of our government, but also skeptical of the kind of demagoguery that many protest movements thrive on. Primarily, however, what I felt was hope. I know that Obama now owns that word, but it was born for me in the meetups and blogosphere.

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Thu Oct 30, 2008 at 03:00 PM PDT

Obama Finance Trouble?

by BornAgainDem

I got this email today, as many of you surely did as well:

I'm the Chief Financial Officer for Barack Obama's campaign. I track the donations coming in and the expenses going out.

I asked for the opportunity to write to you directly so that I could try to explain what's happening right now.

This organization has thousands of employees and spends millions of dollars a day -- and at the moment we're doing it without a safety net.

Our spending plans have been stretched by John McCain's negative attacks and the overwhelming resources of the Republican National Committee.

As of October 15th, John McCain and the RNC together had nearly $20 million more in cash than the combined total of Obama for America and the DNC. And just this week, we're facing new and unexpected spending against us in Montana and West Virginia.

Your incredible generosity has gotten us this far. But right now we need your help more than ever to get this campaign across the finish line.

Please donate $100 or whatever you can afford right now:

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Sun Oct 26, 2008 at 04:29 PM PDT

Good News-Calling Minnesotans

by BornAgainDem

Today I spent another Sunday making calls for Barack Obama at the uber-hipster cafe Four Barrels in San Francisco, which apparently is not too hip to give over their back area to the Obama campaign. As we wrote out our script ("Hello, I'm from San Francisco and I know lots better than you poor rural people who to vote for...How are you doing today?") the friendly volunteer with a frighteningly red state sounding accent handed us our call sheet and mentioned that people were running into some tough customers on these lists, which were based in Minnesota. Scoffing at their problems, knowing that once I let these Midwesterners know that I, a truly enlightened San Franciscan, supported Barack Obama, they would have no choice but to also vote for him, I settled down to start calling. Last week's Indiana calls had actually been pretty pleasant, so I was pretty surprised when some people failed to even be courteous when hearing my West Coast voice.

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Tue Oct 14, 2008 at 02:36 PM PDT

Straight Talk on Prop 8

by BornAgainDem

One thing that has struck me about the discussion of Proposition 8 is the assumption by supporters that there is something sacred about marriage that is being undermined by gay marriage. I hope people against it are emphasizing that, yes, marriage IS sacred. It IS a valued tradition. And that is exactly why this proposition must fail. In fact, most of what Prop 8 supporters say is exactly right about marriage except for who they include. And everything they're doing is like some bizarre alternative world version of what the actual truth is. Not including gay marriages actually hurts marriage. It makes the ceremony and certificate that us straight people sign on to LESS legitimate. Having just exchanged rings with the love of my life, this has become an intensely personal issue.

In response, my wife and I made this commercial-length video to express some of our feelings on the subject, which you are welcome to spread around. We hope it will reach people who are not already on board:

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Fri Sep 12, 2008 at 10:54 AM PDT

The GOP Is Smart

by BornAgainDem

And they know us well. Wow did we just fall into multiple traps. Liberals have so many easily pushed buttons, and they feel like they can just play us like a video game. Picking Sarah Palin was a stroke of genius on many levels. First of all, as they well know, no-one in this country cares about scandals and lack of knowledge. Liberals have been stupified again and again by the folks that have won. Reagan, he's an actor! Has alzheimers! Look how goofy he is! Iran Contra! Dan Quayle is a dim bulb...ha ha! They're going down! Dubya, a drunk party boy who looks like a chimp! How can we possibly lose!

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Ok people, there's been a lot of lamenting about Obama not hitting hard enough, not being active rather than reactive, starting a new narrative about Mccain, etc. Well, the time is nigh, and instead of Obama, this is actually in our hands. The good people at DFA got Phillip Butler into an ad, and they're asking for contributions to get it on the air. Don't know who Phillip Butler is?

In 1965 he was shot down over North Vietnam where he spent eight years as a prisoner of war. He is a highly decorated combat veteran who was awarded two Silver Stars, two Legion of Merits, two Bronze Stars and two Purple Heart medals.

Was a prisoner with John Mccain. Knows him well. War hero. He also, by the way, wrote a damning indictment of Mccain, in that radical far left wing blog,

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Mon Jun 23, 2008 at 10:38 AM PDT

My Letter to Bill Burton

by BornAgainDem

I think in all the kerfuffle about whether to "have Obama's back" or to castigate him, Glen Greenwald hits exactly the right note in his post on Salon. He inspired me to write Bill Burton at the Obama campaign not as a way to heap scorn on Obama, but to point out to him the POSITIVES of fillibustering amnesty.

The whole greatness of Obama's campaign is that WE are funding it, the only constituency he owes his nomination to is us. But if we don't use that power and remind him where that $280 Million came from, than it means nothing and we are just a sprawling ATM. If lobbyists can call and pressure a candidate when their donations are ignored, why can't we? I support Obama, and will continue to do so, but he wants citizen involvement, and apparently he wants people in his cabinet who are Republicans and who disagree with him and makes it clear he wants critical energy, so here I am, being involved and disagreeing:

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