Posting History for gloriasb
|I've lost my handgun virginity
Last week, I fired a handgun for the first time in my life. And for those of you hoping to learn that my experience transformed me from a gun-phobe to a gun-lover: Sorry. I never want to do that ...
| Citizen Police Academy: How I got to be a pretend police officer for one night
I’m not a cop, but I played one yesterday. On the final night of the 9-week Citizen Police Academy that I’ve been attending, 30 participants paired up, suited up in bullet-proof vests and ...
| Al Gore's “Scientific Freedom Restoration Act”
Former Vice President Al Gore will meet with Congressional leaders today to propose the Scientific Freedom Restoration Act. The purpose of the bill is to ensure that science, scientific research, ...
|Indiana: Elevating religion over…everything
I am troubled by Indiana’s new Religious Freedom Restoration Act [RFRA] for the obvious reason—that it is apparently going to be used to discriminate against people in the LGBT community [and ...
|"We can't afford it." The untrue, anti-tax mantra of 21st century government
For the past 30 years, “We can’t afford it” has become the mantra of city councilmen, state legislators and even U.S. Congressional representatives. But there is something terribly wrong ...
|MO Supreme Court closes Ferguson’s municipal kangaroo court: Who’s next?
As many people around the country have recently learned, if you want a fair shake, don’t get ensnared in the legal system of Ferguson, Missouri. The recent DOJ report laid bare not just the ...
|MO State Auditor’s suicide: The gun factor no one wants to talk about
The sad details surrounding the suicide of Missouri State Auditor Tom Schweich continue to emerge. But something is missing in the reporting: the gun behind the tragedy. More below the fold...
|Missouri State Auditor's suicide: the anti-Semitism connection
Having a Jewish grandfather may be smear-worthy in Missouri politics in 2015.
|"Citizen Four:" The Oscars got this one right
Having missed it during its initial theater run, I finally got to see Citizen Four last night on HBO, the day after it won the Academy Award for Best Documentary. It’s an exceptional film, both ...
|"Guns 'n' Hoses" needs a name change
At the risk of being labeled a wet blanket, I’d like to lodge a complaint against Gun ‘n’ Hoses. The event is an evening of amateur boxing and martial-arts matches, pitting St. Louis police ...
Sometime between 2005 and 2014, I got nailed by a red-light camera. I don’t remember the date or the time, but I do remember the flash of light as the camera caught me sneaking through the ...
|"Selma" is good, but...
Can I speak honestly about the new movie, “Selma?” I saw it this afternoon, and here's what I took away from the experience... No doubt, it’s going to get a lot of support for an Oscar. ...
|I'm rooting for the grand juror who's suing STL County prosecutor Bob McCulloch
A member of the Darren Wilson grand jury is suing St. Louis County Prosecuting Attorney Bob McCulloch, claiming that McCulloch publicly mis-characterized the grand jury’s deliberations, and asking ...
|Ferguson grand jury: Separate + unequal = injustice
The decision not to indict Darren Wilson in the shooting death of Michael Brown is wrong in multiple ways, not the least of which is the unorthodox way that County Prosecutor Robert McCulloch ...
|The real "state of emergency" in Ferguson
Missouri Governor Jay Nixon’s declaration of a “state of emergency” in Ferguson is bad news in many ways, but I’ve been struggling with finding a way to express my outrage. Then, yesterday, ...
|A young activist just made my Election Day
Standing in the rain outside a polling place today, touting my spouse/candidate for U.S. Congress– I struck up a conversation with a young guy doing the same for two other Democrats. His name is ...
|My local Democratic Township Club is a waste of time. How’s yours?
What the hell are democratic township clubs good for, anyway? I received an email this afternoon from the one in my area, imploring me, as a member, to help get out the vote next week for “our ...
|The billionaire's blimp: Add your own puns, please
Talk about overinflated: Missouri’s own right-wing billionaire and political meddler— Rex Sinquefield —has found a novel way to pump up support for his latest pet project. He’s renting a ...
|My great-grandmother was a Jewish exorcist
As my mother approaches her 101st birthday, her mind is on fire with long-ago memories. Today, she told me the story of her grandmother, Sarah Plotkin Weintraub, who, in the early 20th century, was ...
|The team with the most money lost today: Cardinals vs Dodgers, a political parable
Unaccustomed as I am to writing about sports, I beg for indulgence just this once. I’m still breathless from this evening’s amazing come-from-behind win by my local team, the St. Louis Cardinals.
|Why Darren Wilson will not be indicted: Lessons from the grand jury room
Based on my experience as a former member of the St. Louis County Grand Jury, I predict that Darren Wilson, the officer who shot Brown, will not be indicted. Here’s why:
|The sad state of campaign debates: 2014 edition
Campaign debates have gone into a state of decline. It’s becoming harder and harder to get political opponents to appear together live to discuss issues. Here's a sampling of what's going on in ...
|Deadbeat Congress goes home
In the ultimate act of Congressional do-nothingness, Congress has abruptly cancelled the few remaining work days scheduled between now [Sept.18] and the Nov. 4 election, packed up and gone home. ...
|Air Force requires "So help me God" in its enlistment oath
If you want to enlist or re-enlist in the U.S. Air Force, you have to take an oath of allegiance, both in writing and aloud. At the end of the oath, you have to say, "so help me God." You can't ...
|Rex Sinquefield: The would-be political grandmaster behind the big chess tournament
I have nothing against chess. But for those of you following the big chess tournament here in St. Louis, it might be interesting to know that Rex Sinquefield, the man who named the tournament after ...
|The 2015 Reagan Ranch calendar is here! The Reagan Ranch calendar is here!
I'm so excited! I can look at pictures of Saint Ronnie all year long! More below...
|In grand jury case against Ferguson cop, prosecutor holds all the cards
The case against the cop who shot Michael Brown may go to the St. Louis County grand jury tomorrow. What I learned when I was on the grand jury was that the prosecutor holds all the cards...and ...
|The unbearable invisibility of political underdogs
In theory, Americans love the underdog. In practice—especially in 21st century media coverage of political campaigns—underdog candidates might as well be wearing Harry Potter’s Cloak of ...
|Courts are conflicted about secrecy of death-penalty drugs: I'm not
Should states be required to disclose which drugs they use to kill people sentenced to the death penalty? Recently, the 9th Circuit Court said, “Yes,” while, in a separate case, the U.S. Supreme ...
|St. Louis mayor bucks MO same-sex marriage ban, issues marriage licenses to 4 same-sex couples
As reported today by Progress Missouri i: Tears flowed. Blessings were proffered. There were tuxedos and white dresses; bow ties and cummerbunds. But when the four distinct ceremonies ended ...
|Spanish Lake: A new documentary about yet another failure of urban planning
"Spanish Lake" is a new documentary film [June, 2014] that looks at the physical, economic and social decline of a suburban neighborhood just north of St. Louis, Missouri. It's told from the ...
|Vermont calls for Constitutional convention to overturn Citizens United: Is that a good idea?
Hating Citizens United is easy. Overturning it is much more difficult, but that’s not stopping some intrepid legislators from trying. The hurdle is high: You may remember, from your middle-school ...
|How do you rate a dead politician? The most screwed up political poll I've ever taken
I’ve just gotten off the phone with pleasant but hapless young man named Nat [not his real name], whose only crime is that he is trying to keep a roof over the head of his family by hiring on to a ...
|This ad for a kitchen-knife holder wrecked my morning
This ad appeared in the New York Times Sunday Magazine this morning [May 11, 2014]. They’re kidding, right? They lifted this from The Onion, right? They can’t be serious! From New York Times ...
|MO "fiscal conservatives" pass reckless tax bill, threatening AAA rating
The Republican-dominated Missouri legislature, acting out an ugly combination of anti-tax ideology and pure selfishness, has enacted a drastic income-tax cut that could throw the state into economic ...
|A political poll: Too late at night, too early in the cycle
A 202 area code on caller ID usually means that I’m not picking up. It’s going to be political—probably a plea for money. But last night, when 202 popped up at 10:00 pm, my outrage meter red-...
|Washington DC's NFL team changes its name on April 1
The NFL’s Washington, DC. team has announced that it is officially changing its name to something more politically correct and less racially insensitive. Native American groups have long advocated ...
|Big banks' ATM fees rip off $19 million from welfare recipients
Big banks lifted more than $19 million out of the wallets of poor people in California in 2012, by charging them unnecessarily high fees for withdrawing cash from their EBT [Electronic Benefit ...
|A Sliver of Light: Hiker hostages tell their story in an amazing new book
I’d almost forgotten about the three friends who, while hiking in Kurdistan in 2009, were lured across the Iraq/Iran border and then held prisoner in an Iranian jail for two years. Then I saw a ...
|Democrats should do a better job of welcoming candidates: Missouri edition
When my husband showed up in our state capital to file his candidacy for U.S. Congress--in a district where no other Democrat is willing to try--he was received with indifference at the Democratic ...
|Phyllis Schlafly is suing to keep her brand name from being associated with [gasp!] beer making
Phyllis Schlafly made a name for herself in the 1970s as founder and leader of the Eagle Forum, which vehemently opposed the Equal Rights Amendment. Now, she wants to "protect" her name, by ...
|George W. Bush discovers--rather late in the game--empathy for soldiers he destroyed
More than 10 years, six-thousand+ body bags, and hundreds of thousands of physically and psychologically wounded veterans too late, George W. Bush may finally be feeling a twinge of regret over the ...
|Live in a[n] historic district? You'll "get" this sendup of the impossible rules and regs.
My sister lives in one of the many historic villages in the upstate New York area. She's very community minded, and in the dozen or so years since she moved there, she's gut-reno'd a Revolutionary-...
|St. Louis TV station becomes the news: A journalistic low
Last week, a staffer at St. Louis’ KSDK-TV decided it would be a dandy idea to test the security measures of some local high schools. His inquiry—and suspicious-looking behavior—at suburban ...
|Old-school communications could have saved Christie a lot of embarrassment
It took exactly one tersely worded email to blow the lid off Chris Christie’s “Bridge-gate” scandal. The now infamous “Time for some traffic problems in Ft. Lee” email from Christie’s ...
|New nullification twist in the war on Obamacare: MO edition
My very own Missouri State Senator, Republican John Lamping, has introduced a bill into the 2014 Missouri legislature that would, according to the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, “take away insurance ...
|4 socio-political lessons from an unlikely source: "Anchorman 2: The Legend Continues"
I’ve just spent two hours I’ll never get back watching “Anchorman 2: The Legend Continues.” It's pretty awful, but some legit social satire is in there somewhere, as well as some political ...
|A Republican Congresswoman's district survey, annotated by a "Democrat" constituent
My Congressional representative wants my input for her annual district survey. I just received it in the mail, and I’m glad she asked. But as I started to fill in the checkboxes, I realized that “
|How will anti-tax Republicans spin on-line sales tax? A dilemma of logic
Republican tax-reform dogma is under fire. On what has become known as “Cyber Monday,” the U.S. Supreme Court let stand a lower court ruling that would enable states to collect sales tax on on-...
|Will a dearth of death drugs kill the death penalty? We can hope so.
Just a few hours before convicted serial murderer Joseph Paul Franklin was scheduled to be executed by lethal injection on Nov. 19, 2013, two federal judges granted a stay. Then that stay was ...
|JFK 1963 news coverage: Part IV
I'm riveted to the CBSnews.com stream of its 1963 coverage of the JFK assassination. It's a time machine--not just back to that day and weekend, but also to a world in some ways different, but in ...
|JFK assassination stream: Part III
At this point, I've been watching the CBSnews.com stream for 90 minutes. What was it like for all of us as we, one by one, came home from work or school and jumped into the live coverage? 50 years ...
|JFK assassination stream: Part II
We've all seen the famous clip of Walter Cronkite announcing the official news that Kennedy had died. What's even more interesting to me is the reporting that followed. How did Cronkite keep it ...
|Watching CBS's 1963 JFK assassination stream: Part I
Judging from the fatal error messages others in my household are getting, I must be one of the lucky people who have been able to log into the CBS stream of 1963 JFK assassination coverage. Here are ...
|On my mother's 100th birthday: The story continues
This is not a political post, but I know you'll forgive me for that. Today’s the day that I stop thinking politically for just a little while and think historically and sentimentally instead. ...
|The "hospital admitting privileges" fraud
Why requiring "hospital admitting privileges" for doctors at reproductive-health facilities is irrelevant in contemporary health care. [Not that anti-choicers care about that, of course...]
|Time to reconsider daylight savings time?
A newly created petition on whitehouse.gov calls for an end to our twice a year time warp ritual--plus some other radical time altering ideas...
|Captain Phillips: The pawn hypothesis
"Captain Phillips" is a well-made action-adventure story, but there's more to it than that..
|Well-insured MO lieutenant gov urges uninsured peons to snub Obamacare
In a shameful display of partisan politics and hard-heartedness, Missouri’s Republican Lieutenant Governor Peter Kinder has publicly urged uninsured citizens to forego the opportunity to get ...
|Blue voices in a red room: Notes from an Obamacare "informational" town hall meeting
What happens when progressive people try to speak at an Obamacare town hall meeting sponsored by right-wing-funded Americans for Prosperity? We can all speculate, but here's the nitty gritty of what ...
|On Syria: Can we take "yes" for an answer?
There’s so much “no” in Washington, that you have to wonder if, given the opportunity to get it right, Washington [politicians and pundits included] and the rest of the country [me and you, my ...
|You'll have to wait 'til 2064 [50 yrs!] to find out what tax loopholes your Senator wants to protect
In a move that Business Week calls something that might have been “dreamed up by a 10-year-old after watching Thunderball,” the Senate Finance Committee plans to keep its members’ ideas for ...
|Fruitvale Station: Leave your stereotypes at the ticket counter
"Fruitvale Station" made me re-examine my own prejudices and stereotypes. You? More after the tear-stained squiggle.
|Gun-totin' property owner kills a guy trying to defend his cousin, who urinated on a gravel bar
More stupid gun tricks: Yesterday, a man who owns a piece of property along Missouri's Meramec River, was pissed off when a guy on a casual canoe trip pissed in the woods behind "his" gravel bar. He ...
|To sell off [Detroit] or to celebrate [St. Louis] a city's cultural assets
As bankruptcy predators began salivating over publicly owned treasures in Detroit--namely, the assets of the Detroit Institute of Art--I visited the newly renovated, taxpayer-supported St. Louis ...
|The hypocritical war on poor people: Missouri edition
If you qualify for TANF [Temporary Assistance for Needy Families] in Missouri, don’t try to use your benefits card at an ATM near a liquor store, a strip joint or a baseball stadium. As of August ...
|How Republicans starve the beast by blocking Obama's appointees
I don’t know why we are surprised at dysfunctional behavior at the Internal Revenue Service: Any agency that has been denied a permanent director since November 2012–and for some agencies, it’...
|Jackie Robinson and the unfinished racial-equality agenda
The new movie, "42," tells the should-be-well-known story of Jackie Robinson, the first black player in major league baseball. For American sports fans of a certain vintage, the breaking of the ...
|"Emperor:" When you call a movie "historical," it helps to include the history stuff
Here’s a lesson I should have learned by now: Beware of movies claiming to be “based on a true story.” The trailer for “Emperor” hinted that it would reveal the inside story behind the ...
|Robo-call says: "Impeach Obama"
The right-wing Obama hate squad called me today. A very excited roboman informed me that he was calling on behalf of the Conservative Majority. "If the thought of another four years of Obama makes ...
|Proposing anti-gun legislation should be a felony, says MO legislator
File this one under idiotic state laws. Missouri state representative Mike Leara--a Republican-- has filed a bill that would make it felony for state lawmakers to propose legislation that would ...
|Birther goes after 102-year-old voter honored in State of the Union speech
The birthers just won't go away, and now they've transferred their wrath to Desiline Victor, the 102-year-old Miami voter--born in Haiti--whose perseverance in the face of a three-hour ...
|Breaking news: Chris Matthews tells David Corn to stop interrupting!
This just in from our Irony Department: Chris Matthews, MSNBC's interrupter in chief, called out Mother Jones' David Corn tonight for interrupting his guest, a Tea Party spokesperson. "Stop ...
|Questions about Mali: Is it the new Viet Nam?
Until about a week ago, I couldn’t find Mali on a map—except that I knew to look in Africa. I knew that it was a poor nation. But I didn’t even know that it was previously known as French West ...
|Resigning immediately after being re-elected: An ugly trend
It was shocking when Congressperson Jo Ann Emerson resigned less than thirty days after being reelected in Nov. 2012. One could write off her move as a uniquely dickish tactic, motivated by greed ...
|Boy Scout food drive: All I'm donating this year is a note of protest.
As they have done every November for many years, the Boy Scouts have tied a blue plastic bag to my front door handle, asking me to fill it with canned goods that they'll pick up next Saturday and ...
|Boehner, McConnell refuse to take President's election-night call: The first lesson of the 2nd term
If, before election day, Barack Obama still maintained any illusions about the possibility of working with Congressional Republicans in a second term, he's got to be over that now, because... When ...
|Civics class at the polling place: Basic stuff some voters didn't know
As an official poll worker on November 6, my job was to help people vote. We looked at IDs, confirmed voters' addresses, handed out paper ballots and did all the nuts-and-bolts stuff of election day.
|Robo-Ashcrofts want to protect my kids from "slavery," so be sure to vote for Todd Akin
Missouri’s Todd Akin is trotting out former U.S. Attorney General John Ashcroft and his wife, Janet, to robo call for him as he desperately tries to defeat Claire McCaskill. [Remember Ashcroft, ...
|A rape survivor tells her story for the 1st time, and asks you to think about it when you vote.
This post was submitted to my blog, Occasional Planet, by Sue Evans. I'm reprinting it at the urging of her friend, Catherine, who is telling her story of rape survival for the first time--13 years ...
|GOTV for Claire McCaskill: Observations from the front door
I'm knocking on doors for Claire McCaskill's GOTV effort, in suburban St. Louis [an impressively well-organized and energetic effort, I must say], and here are some things I'm noticing as I walk/...
|Dear 20-something: This election is about you. Vote!
[Note: This post was written by Renee Shur, and originally published on my blog, Occasional Planet. It is reprinted with her permission.] How important is it that young people go to the polls and ...
|Robocall: Ann Coulter wants me to be a young Repub and stop Obama from ruining America
I’m not young. And I’m not a Republican. So, Ann, you’re calling the wrong number. But I do appreciate the call—because it helps me remember what we’re up against in the 2012 election, and ...
|Voter Registration: Lessons learned
The deadline for voter registration has come and gone in my state. But the memories linger on. Carrying a clipboard stocked with the 19th-century voter registration cards we use in Missouri, and ...
|Did Romney just say "Americans go where there's trouble?"Hypocrisy alert.
Tonight's Rachel Maddow Show featured a clip of Romney talking about [I mean, politically exploiting] the former Navy Seal who died in the Benghazi attack. He was talking about how the soldier, who ...
|I'm rec'ing a lot of diaries tonight, because they're bucking the group think of the punditocracy
I watched the debate, too, Chris Matthews. And I was shocked and outraged at your foaming-at-the mouth reaction. I'm normally an MSNBC junkie. But, tonight, you and the others pundits are creating ...
|Why you should consider waking up at 4 am on November 6
There’s still time to join the tens of thousands of civic-minded Americans who’ll be setting their alarms for 4 am on Election Day. Why 4 am? Well, if you want to be an official poll worker, you��
|Little ditty 'bout Mitt on tape
Each one of the donors kicked in 50 grand, To hear where their candidate’s policies stand. He gave them an earful, but he didn’t know That his thoughts would end up on the R. Maddow Show. ...
|Taken in by Republican propaganda
In which a usually well-informed, Obama-supporting senior citizen shocks me by saying that she's inclined to vote for Mitt Romney, citing, as her reasons, Republican propaganda points.
|Todd Akin loves the colonial era--and its ideas
Where does Todd Akin get the idea that, when she’s raped, a “woman’s body has ways to try to shut that whole thing down?” Here’s an Akin tidbit that offers a clue. For many years, Akin ...
|Draining the Medicare pool
Insurance is all about risk. Medicare is an insurance program, and it works because it pools together everyone in the Medicare-eligible age group—whether they’re healthy or sick. By doing that, ...
|The pollster asked me: "If Todd Akin dropped out..."
Less than 36 hours after Todd Akin made his imbecilic remarks, I got a robo-poll. I'm glad I stayed on the line...
|Candidates: Does anyone tell you if you won or lost? Just askin'
In 2010, someone near and dear to me took a giant political leap and ran for Congress in a district where no other Democrat was running. When the polls closed on election day, we were eager to see ...
|Aw, shoot! I missed Glock Days again
On July 30, 2012, Catherine Murch shot her two children in her St. Louis-area home and then killed herself, using a 9 millimeter handgun that she had purchased on July 28 from ontargetstl.com for $...
|Pray anywhere? Read the fine print first
Recent polling shows that 82 percent of Missouri voters favor the so-called “Pray Anywhere” constitutional amendment on the August 7  ballot. Well, sure they do. It’s an apple-pie issue, ...
|Rollin' on the [federally flood-controlled] river
On a steamboat cruise along the Mississippi and Ohio Rivers, the critical, federally funded infrastructure is everywhere. My fellow passengers hardly noticed...
|Retroactive Romney: 21st Century Marty McFly?
Mitt Romney may or may not be a job creator, but he [or his campaign team] sure knows how to create a hot new phrase. Under scrutiny for the discrepancy between his SEC filings and his avowals of ...
|Transit of Venus puts politics, lives into perspective
In the midst of an election season that—like so many others—is being billed as “the most important in our lifetimes”—something much bigger—literally cosmic—is happening that should ...
|Stupid legislative tricks: Missouri edition [but not just for Missourians]
The silly—and nasty—season in Jefferson City, Missouri came to a merciful end last night [May 18, 2012], with the customary cheers and sophomoric tossing-in-the-air of papers that accompany the ...
|"The Greatest Grid:" When America thought big
Most people who want to navigate the streets of New York City quickly learn the easy-to-follow logic of the city’s street grid. But what many—even long-time residents—may not know is how that ...
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- Honest answer to a reader's question No snark, no smartassery. This is one of the finest responses I've ever seen to this kind of question. Setup: The Charlotte Observer's Taylor Batten wrote a ...139 comments 648 Recs
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- Is the arc of justice becoming apparent in Ferguson, Missouri? Apparently the effects of the Department of Justice report on Ferguson are starting to be felt, as ...37 comments 59 Recs
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