Shaun Mullen is disappointed at President Obama’s failure to grapple with President George the Worst’s legacy of torture. A nugget:

Seven and a half years after Obama promised a new beginning, including banning torture in one of his first acts, any expectation . . . that he would at least advocate a thorough examination of the torture regime’s worst excesses has been dashed. Obama’s endorsement, by his silence, of the CIA’s continued obstruction of the Democrat-dominated Senate Intelligence Committee’s release of its damning report on torture without redactions that would render it meaningless, is nothing less that a legitimization of that agency’s vile practices. His defense of CIA Director John Brennan, who has led the campaign to stymie release of the report while at least tacitly approving the rogue agency’s own spying on the Senate committee, makes farcical the president’s statements that he believes in the U.S. hewing to international law, including the Geneva Conventions.

I tend to agree with Shaun on this. I do not agree when persons complain that President Obama failed to close Guantanamo; Congress prevented that. In this case, though, he had freedom to choose, and he chose wrong.



Nap politely.

Patrick Sanders, 20, was sleeping on the couch when the gun slipped out of his pants on to the floor in the incident that took place on Saturday in a Houston apartment.

The child then handled the gun and Sanders tried to grab it from the toddler, police said.

“At that time, the gun went off and Sanders was shot in the face. The child was not injured,” Houston Police said in a statement.

Via Juanita Jean.


Charles Lamb:

He is no lawyer who cannot take two sides.


Off to drink liberally.


The Roanoke Times editorial board calls out Bedford County Republicans’ decision that ideology trumps governance.

The actions of the Republicans are not surprising. In their world, ideology trumps reality every day of the week and twice on Sundays. A snippet from the editorial:

One of the worst crimes in the old Soviet Union was to commit what was called an “ideological error.”

Ilya Ehrenburg was a writer who won honors even under Stalin, and was considered the very model of a Soviet writer. But late in life, he spoke of how Soviet realism and Western art forms might be able to co-exist. Esoteric literary criticism? No! A “gross ideological error,” in the words of Soviet leader Nikita Khrushchev.

(snip another example)

So what does any of this have to do with anything around here?

Just this: Last week, the Bedford County Republicans took the unusual act of voting to censure three Republicans on the county board of supervisors. Their offense? They had voted in favor of a tax increase back in April and had not come before the county’s Republican committee to explain why.


The other day, I was in line at a checkout behind an old white man–older than me–wearing a “Tell Congress that Guns Save Lives” tee shirt.

The back of the tee shirt proclaimed that

The reign of hate and fear ends on January 20, 2017.

Not wanting a confrontation and not knowing whether or not he was packing, I refrained from pointing out that the “hate and fear” were his and no one else’s.


Colbert takes on idiocy.

Below the fold because it may autoplay.

More »



A state judge has declared a St. Petersburg, Florida, parking ordinance “unconstitutional.”

I suspect that that’s some kind of first.


Royal twits.


Hunters seem to have found their red October.

A 12 year old girl was shot around 7 o’clock Monday morning on Van Scoyoc Hollow Road in Snyder Township, Blair County. State Police and the Pennsylvania Game Commission are investigating this shooting as a possible hunting accident. No details are being released on the condition of the girl at this time.

And, in more news of the polite . . . .


She did it to herself:

Police aren’t releasing the name of the girl who authorities first believed had been shot outside her home Monday as she left for school about 7 a.m. That prompted the Pennsylvania Game Commission to investigate whether the girl might have been wounded by a hunter’s stray bullet.

But police now say the girl had grabbed the rifle and was returning it to a safe when it fell and discharged in her Snyder Township home.


Viggo Mortensen:

I’m not afraid of death, but I resent it. I think it’s unfair and irritating.


Students at a troubled charter school in Philadelphia got a surprise Monday morning – they found the high school portion of it closed.

Some say they received a robo call last night telling them not to come to class. Others say they showed up ready for school only to be turned away.

The banner hanging on the front of the charter school says they’re enrolling students through the 12th grade. But parents and students at Walter D Palmer Leadership Learning Partners Charter School in Frankford say, in fact, their high school has closed, effective immediately.

This is an example what happens when you try to privatize the public good.


Will it never end?



The Republican Plan:  Gerrymandering, Voter ID, Limiting Polling Places and Hours.  After the election, Republican shouts,

Via Jobs’s Anger.


Come help us celebrate.

When: 6:00 7:00 p. m., Tuesday, October 29.

Tripps Restaurant
101 South Independence Boulevard
Virginia Beach, VA (map)


This case of racist ebola profiling (there was, natch, no ebola, but there was a hell of a lot of racism, fed and nurtured by Fox News and CNN and many local rags) is vile beyond words.

Meanwhile, John Oliver tells you how to keep safe.

Video via C&L.


The Texas State Board of Education: