Saturday, May 28, 2016

Fair or Not, Judges Run the Room--Zohra, Baby, You Cannot Interrupt a Judge

Re: the Huffington Post, last week of May, 2016: I'm sorry,
but in no USA courtroom can any attorney run the room.
It is the Sitting Judge, or the Hearing Officer, etc. who
authorizes attorneys to speak, object, make closing statements/
arguments, approach the bench. Public Defender Zohra
Bakhtary WAS out of line, period, overtalking and interrupting
the judge. Even if she is correct in stating the judge interrupted
her first, too bad, baby, but in the courtroom, the judge CAN
do that--attorneys are NOT equal to the sitting  judge!
YES, they can:
(1) remove attorneys and defendants or others,
 anyone not observing the judge's authority,
(2) even employ duct tape,
(3) close the current docket session and reschedule...
YES, even in Las Vegas, where this incident occurred.

While handcuffs administered to Zohra seems draconian
practice, Atty. Bakhtary refused to accede to Judge's Hafen's
order to be silent. Is she being "passionate" in defending her
client, or arrogating authority she simply does not possess?
--I vote for the latter. As to these others who backed her up,
they should have any official credentials they possess withdrawn,
because they fail to understand our system; I'm not asking anyone
to like it, just obey it until we institute a better one.

As an Officer of the Court, Zohra's "Zealously defending
her client" (her statement) smacks instead of zealotry and
entitlement drama. She IS young and pretty, which
often results in such an attitude. She should have
immediately stopped talking when instructed, waited
for a subsequent, more opportune moment, then
attempted again to make her point. Talented, shrewd
attorneys do EXACTLY that. When  Judge Hafen
admonished her, finishing his sentence with "...OKAY?"
Bakhtary took this for her opening, but he hadn't
concluded, cue to Zohra misapprehended, unfortunately.

As to the " persecuted woman whine", please! Women
in this setting must obey the rules, as must the men. Zohra's
friends are not serving her by playing the "aggrieved
female" card. What, she should interrupt all she wishes
because she's a girl? --PLEASE.

I think the relatively untutored of this world, including
lawyers who have observed the Clarence Darrows
of jurisprudence monopolizing a courtroom, miss the
key reality--it is the JUDGE ALLOWING the spectacle.
He or she is absolutely under no obligation to do so.

Back to Criminal Justice 101, everyone! Especially
you, Zohra baby.

Wednesday, May 25, 2016

Trump in New Mexico: Mob-Made Mayhem, the Rabble Strikes Again

Albuquerque, New Mexico, May 24th, 2016: Trump's tension-
tussle caused chaos and some property damage. Protesters
understandably reject being called rapists and murderers by the
Donald--but their conduct here is unsupportable, nevertheless.
Rocks and bottles were thrown at police horses--what do the
poor animals have to do with any sort of politics? This shameful,
sorry spectacle, among others, deserves the pejorative term,
"rabble"; mob-made mayhem seems accurate as well. How is
mindless destruction going to advance anyone's cause?

We DO have a system, broken in places though it may be, so
we should exploit every legal means to correct injustices and
vote out bad leaders. Again, tiresomely enough, I must add--
do your damn research; stop wishing, without any effort from
you, for miracles which will resolve ANYTHING! Speak out,
organize, interact with legislators, run for office, VOTE.

Nothing worth having has ever come easy. Did these rabble-
rousers' parents teach them that? If so, the lessons obviously
failed to stick. Instead, we see dangerous behavior which
embarrasses everyone and enlightens no one. Money and
media frequently frittered away, wasted, to say nothing of
time...

The arrow of time moves ever more swiftly toward
November--is it too late to create an atmosphere of
reason, producing a president worthy of the name?

Wednesday, May 18, 2016

The Yellow Journalism Which Never Ended Here: How It Enables the Rabble and an Outbreak in Nevada

--Yes, the rabble. Others won't/don't/can't call it, but I CAN:
No major media outlet will simply say, the unthinking mob
disgraced itself and us, yet again, this time in Nevada,
Tuesday, May 17th. Sanders supporters aped the worst
Trump supporters, using threats, web insults, calling a female
politician the "c" word, etc. ...and chairs were thrown, a' la
the dangerous stupidities one sees in South Korean politics.
(See Chris Matthews' "Hardball" for interviews and video
views of the shameful Nevada convention mayhem.)

--UGH.  I am officially now ashamed to be an American,
yes; and I won't/don't/can't care to walk that statement
back, either. This isn't disloyalty, just frank disgust, that
the greater preponderance of the sensible aren't rising up
to loudly, prominently decry such actually illegal, ignorant
behavior...whatever HAPPENED to "disagreeing without
being disagreeable?"

In the previous post I compared the current crop of
journalists/reporters unfavorably to the likes of Walter
Cronkite et al., who were thorough, dignified, accurate
and therefore admirable. Yellow journalism, I learned in
the 1950s, had been a bane of our national existence,
yet NOW had largely left the landscape, ostensibly,
observably. But wait, I say NO: just recall how an
experienced, moderate, bipartisan like Gov. Kasich
got/gets short shrift, while the Trumps and Teds get
whatever coverage they'd like. Violence at these
important events takes valuable time and pride of
place at the expense of dealing with the USA's
many serious problems; do the big media outlets
care??--Hell no.

Big media, be responsible, DO YOUR DAMN
JOB, STOP enabling the self-important crazies
who are ruining our country--DO IT NOW!

Monday, May 16, 2016

The New York Times: Megan Kelly Media Madness Sinks to a New Low

--Whaaat?? The New York Times, once a very vital, vaunted source
of (--ahem!) important news has dedicated one and a half pages
to Megan Kelly, (May 14th) who apparently never asks questions
most of us actually SHOULD obtain answers to. So, et tu, NYT??
You have now joined the ranks of the ignominious and irrelevant.
But hey, that moves our local papers, the Chicago Tribune
and the Chicago Sun-Times up a few pegs, yay!

I knew the end was coming when the NYT allowed
a huge typo, "billie oils" (for billions of miles) into print,
proofreading be damned into non-existence, early in the
millennium.  Even earlier, (~1993) I had called editorial
over there to discover that the famous paper had fired all
its proofreaders and most of its copy editors...

And now the New York Times has sunk to the infotainment
level, simply because this chick wears low-cut clothing
and has blond hair? --Please. She is as trashy as Trump,
not minding being part of such  sexual crudity, participating
wholeheartedly on the Howard Stern Show. I don't subscribe
but am related to family who do; I heard her exchange with
Howard months ago--innocent, intelligent (or even decent)
she is NOT. No sympathy is necessary for her as the object
of the Donald's attack--he was wrong and so is she, even if
for somewhat different reasons.

The days of Edward R. Murrow, Walter Cronkite,
Peter Jennings and Tom Brokaw are clearly eclipsed.
This nation is much worse off while the media panders
to such low tastes when real problems proliferate.

To the New York Times:  DO YOUR DAMN JOB,
shame on you!

Ted Cruz Down, But Don't Rule Him Out

May 3rd, 2016: Ted Cruz has bowed out of the USA's presidential
sweepstakes, but he could be offered the VEEP consolation prize
in July at the Republican National Convention...ugh.

It WAS odd, though, methinks, for him to leave the intense fray
simply because he lost Indiana's primary. He vows to keep on
"fighting" (for what, exactly, who can tell?). Some of us wanted
both parties to host brokered conventions this Summer, as the
potential for a messy but actually democratic process existed
as long as Ted soldiered on.

I had fantasized that the rank and file would ask for Governor
Kasich to take the nomination as a  moderate, grass-roots
compromise--not that the media mavens moved forward
toward such an eventuality...but who cares? Even some of
THEM admit, every week, that they had not foreseen the
staying power of the Donald, with  "charmingly" self-
deprecatory chuckles; have they ever owned up to the
irresponsible, irrepressible mess they've helped to create?

But Bernie Sanders seemingly steams ahead to a Democratic
contested show in July; I'm all for it--why not? Bill's Hill
is not a dream candidate for several hard-to-hide-from
reasons, Benghazi not being a major one despite all the
reverberations from the right, in and out of our Congress.

Meanwhile, back at the ranch, "Texas" Ted must be darkly
plotting, probably with Grover Norquist, Glenn Beck et al.
Brothers and sisters, let's keep an aware eye on the guy...

He's down, but scarcely out.

Monday, May 2, 2016

An "Exceptional" USA: --Really?? Not quite: government authorities routinely break laws

...And here is merely one case in point: the U.S. Forest Service,
which I have mostly admired, has allowed corporate giant Nestle
to violate laws regarding public lands (i.e., putatively owned by
the people) for TWENTY-EIGHT YEARS. Now Nestle
wants a five year extension. What IS this??

Nestle, according to a USA Today article from October 2015,
is the world's largest food and beverage concern--I'm not
certain if this means by volume of sales or net profit. Nestle's
American division taps into Arrowhead Springs in the San
Bernardino Mountains (CA). Former foresters and several
environmental organizations have sued, protesting this long-
standing practice, as no rigorous scientific studies seem to
have been done to gauge any environmental degradation.
Considering California's lengthy drought, how does this pass
the smell test? The U.S. Forest Service in California issues
permits which allows Nestle to take great amounts of water,
but federal law has been broken by not requiring Nestle to
officially renew its permits; this shocking laxity has continued
for the above-mentioned 28 years. (!)

Dear readers, this outrage, others as well, greet me daily
in my Yahoo inbox. How can we be "the city on a hill",
"exceptional", "the best nation on Earth", etc., ad nauseam,
when laws are so often broken by government authorities as
I'm routinely aware of?  --Really?? Isn't the United States just
another nation wallowing in an all-too predictable chauvinism?
I love this country because I was born here, a compelling
indication of loyalty as President James Madison said in
Marbury vs. Madison. Everyone I love is here--but I am not
blinded by all-too human flaws in its actions nevertheless.

The disgusting, disquieting tragedy is that much of what's wrong
here at home is not necessity or inevitability. We could become
a mature society, defying at last, the analysis performed by
Alexis de' Tocqueville in his world-famous Democracy in America
(~1835), wherein he describes us as being shallow, too restless,
hungering after novelty. --The prescription for this malady?

"Drink deep or taste not the pierian spring" (--fount of knowledge)
by Alexander Pope, poet from the UK.

[P.S.: For more details, anyone can check Case 5:15-cv-02098
Document 1, filed 10/13/2015. Kudos to the USA Today
for providing the full 15 page legal and source document
in its online version.]

Thursday, April 21, 2016

--Hurray! Heroine Harriet Tubmann Gets Her Overdue Symbolic View

--On the soon to be issued new $20 bill. This is one of those
rare times when policy proves perfect--at least, in my opinion:

(1) She will be on one of  the most used currency denominations
we have, when you think about ATM withdrawals, etc.

(2) Alexander Hamilton, one of our key Founding Fathers,
is left alone to reign over the $10 bill. --Here's to Hamilton
as well!

(3) BUT MOST OF ALL, the U.S. president I have hated
most continuously, murderously racist Andrew Jackson, will
be gone...whew! I did not expect this happy happenstance to
occur in my lifetime, but here it IS.

Harriet Tubman was indeed a true hero; she follows the
definition of risking her life for others many times over.
The clarion call for acknowledging her in this way finally
reached those that matter, those who would be able to
make momentous decisions/policy changes.

My other personal currency and history hero, Alexander
Hamilton, was an actual hero as well, facing death many
times to help Washington wrest us from the British; later,
as a Founding Father, Hamilton (along with others) created
an actual nation with his contributions to our U.S. Constitution,
the Federalist Papers, and as Treasury Secretary.

Here's to heroes, then: Tubman and Hamilton, both of whom
made our country great...hip, hip, hooray!