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New Richmond Police officer Jesse Kidder, in confronting a double murder suspect, used restraint when the suspect attempted "suicide by cop".  Gun nuts are now PO'd that the officer didn't blow the suspect away.


Did Officer Kidder do the right thing in refraining from shooting the suspect?

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In what is suspected to be an attempted "suicide by cop", a police officer exercises restraint.  See more below the fold.

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Some of you may have heard that Liz Mair, a messaging expert who had just joined the Walker Campaign, almost immediately resigned (as in, her tenure could pretty much be counted in hours) over tweets she had put out earlier this year criticizing Iowa.

Well, there are plenty in the GOP who see this as a spineless act on Walker's part, and they're not pulling punches.  

More below the fold.

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Sun Feb 08, 2015 at 10:10 PM PST

Anti-Vax? Anti-Logic.

by Witgren

Yeah, it's another anti-anti-vax diary.  But I have a problem with people that are impervious to logic and common sense and the vast preponderance of medical, scientific, and historical evidence.  At the end of the day, the anti-vax religion (because that's really what it comes down to, at the end of the day -- zealotry not based upon actual facts) is more dangerous to the world than ISIS, because of it's potential to cause undiscriminate death of innocents worldwide that's far beyond the wildest dreams of the most insane religious extremist.

For the anti-vaxxers out there, if the above statement pisses you off...tough.  I am totally unapologetic about it.

Let's take a look below the cheese curl at some of the illogical anti-vax idiocy I came across today on Teh Internets.

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Fri Jan 16, 2015 at 02:06 PM PST

Less gas for the 2016 GOP Clown Car

by Witgren

Well, the GOP Powers-That-Be have decided that there was just too much GOP crazy on display during the last round of primaries, so they've decided to cut back.  I mean, if you stick cameras in front of your candidates too often, who knows what wacky stuff might come out of their mouths?  People might actually learn something about the candidates and how they think (or fail to think) and what their actual beliefs are!

So, at the moment they've trimmed the schedule considerably when compared to the 2012 primary season -- now a mere 9 scheduled debates, compared to the 20 we were treated to that provided such hilarity and gave us such memorable soundbites (who can forget Perry's famous "Oops" line!).  There is an option to add 3 more debates "if necessary", but yeah...who really expects that to happen?

Link to story on CNN:

RNC cuts primary debates down to 9; CNN to host up to 3


Will the GOP primaries be as horrortaining (horrifying and entertaining) as last time around?

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Two police officers have been charged with first-degree murder in the shooting death of a homeless man

Officers face murder charges in 2014 Albuquerque homeless man's shooting

Helmet and body cameras worn by dozens of city police who converged on the campsite showed Boyd with two small camping knives in his hands.

Over several hours, Boyd talked with officers, at one point claiming to be "the Department of Defense."

The cameras captured officers converging on a small nest of rocks on the hillside. At one point, Boyd turned his back to the officers and they began firing.

Officers fired a shotgun and nonlethal beanbag pellets at Boyd, while other officers were caught on camera throwing flash-bang grenades. The video also shows one officer unleashing his K-9 German shepherd against Boyd.

The helmet cameras show Boyd wheezing for breath after the attack. He died later at a local hospital.

Australia's solar researchers have converted over 40 percent of the sunlight hitting a solar system into electricity, the highest efficiency ever reported. A key part of the prototype's design is the use of a custom optical bandpass filter to capture sunlight that is normally wasted by commercial solar cells on towers and convert it to electricity at a higher efficiency than the solar cells themselves ever could.
More here:

In world first, researchers convert sunlight to electricity with over 40 percent efficiency

We can hope that as solar continues to make strides in greater efficiency, dependence on fossil fuels will become less and less something that is a major aspect of our geopolitics.


Fri Dec 05, 2014 at 11:26 PM PST

Frank Serpico Speaks

by Witgren

Frank Serpico has penned some thoughts for the New York Daily News.  Very much worth a read.  Check out the link and an excerpt below the fold.

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I'm just going to drop this here without further comment, except to say that in the coming days we need to remember that there are good police officers out there...and the good ones deserve the support of society.

The Surprising Reason This 73-Year-Old Widow Is In The Back Of A Squad Car

Edit:  Decided to add a little text from the story as a lead in (but there is more to it than just a ride to the grocery store)--

Last week, duty called Officer John Holder to a Desoto, Texas department store. No, it wasn't because of a crime or to manage Black Friday crowds. It was to help a 73-year-old widow shop for her Thanksgiving groceries.

The photo of the pair strolling the aisles of what appears to be a Walmart store, with Holder in uniform, pushing the cart, has brought attention to the humble officer's kindness.

"She just struck me as someone who really needed someone to care and help her out," Holder said of Dorothy Shepard. Holder first met Shepard six months ago, when he arrived at her home to do a wellness check as she recovered from knee and back surgeries.


Wed Nov 05, 2014 at 07:11 AM PST

Yeah, but now they need to govern...

by Witgren

Last night the GOP took over the Senate, as you all well know...

But now that they have two houses of Congress plus the majority of the Supreme Court, they bloody well have to actually govern.

No more lining up 50-odd votes to repeal Obamacare in the House knowing that the bills will never make it to the Senate floor.  Those theatrics are going to have to change, because otherwise, what happens if they vote for repeal and get it through both houses?

Yeah, yeah, I know... Obama will veto.  But that veto is going to show a lot of people who now have insurance or expanded Medicare that the only thing standing between that new access to health care is the vote of one person -- the President.

And what if a few Blue Dogs join in on the repeal?  Is it possible that enough would jump the fence that there would be the votes to override a veto?

Ponder 2016 for a moment if that happens, and think about the backlash.

Same thing on immigration reform.

That's all I have time for, so I'll just leave it at that.


Mon Nov 03, 2014 at 09:27 AM PST

If the Republicans take the Senate

by Witgren

What will it really mean?

It's a genuine question.  Throw your thoughts down in the comments and let me know.

I've got a few thoughts of my own under the cheese doodle.

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Fri Sep 26, 2014 at 12:39 PM PDT

Need another incident to P*ss you off?

by Witgren

Submitted for your consideration without further comment:

Trooper shoots a man as he reaches for his wallet

Edit:  Well, ok, maybe some comment, for those that can't view the video---

The officer stopped behind the victim's vehicle and question him as he got out of his vehicle.  The man turned and leaned into the vehicle for his wallet, at which time the officer ordered him to get out of the car and fired several shots, striking the victim in the hip.  The officer is currently being held and his lawyer is claiming he is not guilty on grounds that the victim "aggressively" leaned into his car leading the officer to believe he was reaching for a weapon.

On the video, you can hear the man asking why the officer shot him.

The response: he was stopping him for a seat belt violation.

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