On Criminal Justice Reform, Ted Cruz Is Smarter Than Hillary Clinton

Aren't Democrats supposed to be more enlightened on this issue?



Yesterday the Brennan Center for Justice published an essay collection that highlights both the emerging bipartisan consensus in favor of criminal justice reform and the vacuousness of some politicians who claim to support that cause. The book, titled Solutions: American Leaders Speak Out on Criminal Justice, features worthy and substantive contributions from, among others, Sens. Rand Paul (R-Ky.), Cory Booker (D-N.J.), and Ted Cruz (R-Texas), not to mention nonpoliticians such as UCLA criminologist Mark Kleiman and Marc Levin, founder of Right on Crime. Even New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie, who is not exactly thoughtful on the subject of, say, marijuana legalization, has some interesting things to say about bail reform. And then there are former President Bill Clinton, Vice President Joe Biden, Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker, Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.), and former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, who either support policies that contribute to overincarceration and excessive punishment, fail to acknowledge their past support for such policies, or have nothing specific to say about how to correct those policies.

As president, Bill Clinton helped create a situation in which, as then-Attorney General Eric Holder put it in 2013, "too many Americans go to too many prisons for far too long, and for no truly good law enforcement reason." The Clinton administration bragged about supporting "tougher penalties" (including a federal "three strikes" law and longer sentences for meth-related crimes), building more prisons, opposing parole, putting more cops on the street, implementing "a comprehensive anti-drug strategy," and expanding the federal death penalty. This is the full extent of the mea culpa that Clinton offers in the preface to the Brennan Center's book:

By 1994, violent crime had tripled in years. Our communities were under assault. We acted to address a genuine national crisis. But much has changed since then. It's time to take a clear-eyed look at what worked, what didn't, and what produced unintended, long-lasting consequences.

So many of these laws worked well, especially those that put more police on the streets. But too many laws were overly broad instead of appropriately tailored.

Similarly, Biden, who as a senator helped produce those laws—including the Violent Crime Control and Law Enforcement Act of 1994, which Wikipedia calls "the largest crime bill in the history of the United States" and Biden calls "the 1994 Biden Crime Bill"—is in no mood to apologize. Instead Biden uses the book's lead essay to argue that spending "a lot of money" to hire "a lot of cops" would improve relations between police and the communities they serve. At least Biden, who used to be a big fan of mandatory minimums and wrote the bill that gave us a "drug czar," has the good taste not to mention the war on drugs.

Walker and Rubio, both presidential contenders, do mention the war on drugs, which has been a major contributor to overincarceration. They are for it.

Walker, who wants to test people who apply for unemployment benefits, Medicaid, or food subsidies to make sure they are not illegal drug users, describes that policy as "proactively identifying and targeting barriers that prevent people from moving from government dependence to true independence and personal success." He says "drug testing at critical junctures…provides an opportunity for intervention at the earliest possible stages and for treatment as well as job training for those suffering from drug addiction." What about occasional pot smokers who, unlike moderate drinkers or even raging alcoholics, would be automatically denied government benefits and turned down for jobs under the policies Walker favors? Like all orthodox drug warriors, Walker pretends such drug users do not exist.

To his credit, Rubio criticizes "overcriminalization" (as do several other contributors), but his critique does not extend to nonviolent offenses involving the production, possession, or distribution of arbitrarily proscribed intoxicants. "When we consider changing the sentences we impose for drug laws," he writes, "we must be mindful of the great successes we have had in restoring law and order to America's cities since the 1980s drug epidemic destroyed lives, families, and entire neighborhoods. I personally believe that legalizing drugs would be a great mistake and that any reductions in sentences for drug crimes should be made with great care."

Hillary Clinton does not caution legislators against reducing drug penalties. To the contrary, she notes that as a senator she supported shorter crack sentences (as did almost every member of Congress by the time a bill was enacted in 2010). But unlike Paul, Booker, and Cruz, who describe actual pieces of legislation they have either introduced or cosponsored, Clinton is decidedly vague about what reforms should come next.

Clinton wants us to know "it is possible to reduce crime without relying on unnecessary force or excessive incarceration," which may sound wise but is actually a tautology. Instead of unnecessary force or excessive incarceration, she suggests, "we can invest in what works," such as "putting more officers on the streets." Clinton, her husband, and Joe Biden all seem to agree that you can never have too many cops. She also mentions "tough but fair reforms of probation and drug diversion programs," along with more money for "specialized drug courts and juvenile programs." That's about as specific as she gets.

Clinton fills out the essay with platitudes and self-aggrandizing references to Robert Kennedy and "my friend" Nelson Mandela. She also name-checks "Dr. King." Possibly all three of these men have something to do with criminal justice reform, but if so Clinton never bothers to elucidate the connections. It is sad that the Democratic Party's presumptive presidential nominee would offer such a shallow discussion of a subject on which Democrats are supposed to be more enlightened than Republicans. By contrast, three less prominent Democrats—Booker, former Maryland Gov. Martin O'Malley, and former Virginia senator Jim Webb—contributed essays that are actually worth reading.

Clinton's essay is especially embarrassing  compared to Ted Cruz's. Although Cruz is not as passionate, active, or ambitious on criminal justice reform as Rand Paul is, his essay includes succinct and informed discussions of the bloated federal criminal code, the leverage that mandatory minimums give prosecutors, and the virtual disappearance of trial by jury in criminal cases, along with specific reforms to address these problems. Democrats who think Hillary Clinton is savvier or smarter than Cruz may reconsider after reading these essays side by side.

NEXT: Pay Your Venezuelan Doctor...in Cooking Oil?

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  1. Libertarians need to read about the Reign of Terror and the French Revolutionary Wars. The Original Left turned out to not care about civil liberties and oppose war once they came to power. Why they are constantly surprised at this is anyone's guess.

    1. What the hell are you talking about?

      1. Stuff like
        Aren't Democrats supposed to be more enlightened on this issue?

        has always been bullshit?

        1. I am not sure who you are referring to when you say 'Libertarians'.

          I dont recall anyone here every claiming the Left, historically or contemporarily, was anything but an avowed enemy of liberty and the rule of law.

          1. Welch and Gillespie.

            1. It is a stretch to call them Libertarians, but ok.

              1. Ah, so I'm not alone then...

                1. Suthenboy, you owe him a Midori Sour and a reach around.

                  1. I don't know about the reach around. I am not very considerate.

                    1. You can have your libertarian card back.

              2. COZMOS!!!!!!!!!

    2. So what? On this subject Lyndon LaRouche actually said something worthwhile: that the seating arrangements in the National Assembly in revolutionary France did not freeze political discourse for all time.

      1. Lyndon LaRouche actually said something worthwhile

  2. Aren't Democrats supposed to be more enlightened on this issue?

    No. Whatever gave you that idea?

    1. If you tell a lie big enough and keep repeating it, people will eventually come to believe it?

    2. Well, Democrats are often pro-criminal, so maybe that's what confused Jacob.

      (ducks and runs)

  3. OT =

    Journalist for "City Paper" a Baltimore free weekly, takes photos of "protesters" (aka 'rioters') and posts them on twitter claiming that 'no violence' is occurring and that its generally peaceful, etc.

    ...when it comes out later, the very photos he posted showed people he was with being robbed.

    just a case-study in 'narrative creation'. the left is desperate to superimpose their own idealized view of this being about 'racial justice' or something....

    1. Isn't Salon openly calling for mob violence?

      1. they cross/published a piece by a derp-slinger basically endorsing it

        i sincerely doubt many of the people starting fires and smashing up police cars are huge fans of Queer Politics. The SJW types want to impose their own communitarian vision on the mob, as though they have anything in common w/ one another.

        1. So if blacks and/or Muslims started torching gay areas I guess he would defend them too.

        2. Man, cats don't know what it's gonna be
          Fuckin with a nigga like me, D-to-the-M-to-the-X
          Last I heard, y'all niggas was havin sex, with the same sex
          I show no love, to homo thugs
          Empty out, reload and throw more slugs
          How you gonna explain fucking a man?
          Even if we squashed the beef, I ain't touching ya hand
          I don't bunk with chumps, for those who been to jail
          That's the cat with the Kool-Aid on his lips and pumps
          I don't fuck with niggas that think they broads
          Only know how to be one way, that's the dog
          I know how to get down, know how to bite
          Bark very little, but I know how to fight
          I know how to chase a cat up in the tree
          Man, I give y'all niggas the b'iness for fucking with me, is you crazy?!

          1. I thought DMX was DL-friendly?

            i forget who that was. there was a rapper like him who got outed. maybe TI? someone from atlanta maybe.

            Speaking of which... apparently the best DJ party in the country couple years ago was a black tranny party in NOLA. there was a documentary about it

            1. Come on. The man who wrote such lyrics as:

              Yeah, you right, I know ya style: pussy, cause I'm fucking it
              Since we all right here, you hold my dick while he sucking it
              Motherfucker, don't you know you'll never come near me
              Shove ya head up ya ass, have you seein shit clearly
              Never heard that D be running, cause D be gunning
              I beat my dick and bust off in ya eye so you can see me coming

              must be straight as an arrow. How could you even say otherwise?

              1. "How could you even say otherwise?"

                The lady doth protest too much

              2. "and bust off in ya eye so you can see me coming"

                also, that's a terrible bite of Phife Dawg

                1. You're so right.

                  I always liked Busta on that track:

                  As I did it yo I had to beg your pardon
                  When I travel through the town I roll with the squadron
                  RRRRAOWR, RRRRAOW, like a dungeon dragon
                  Change your little drawers cause your pants were saggin'

                  1. Many people have never heard the scenario remix, which is actually an entirely different track, just the same characters. for whatever reason it never got any radio play, and never got re-released until much later and no one paid much mind.

                    another legendary remix, but one actually much more popular than the original track, which kind of sucked.

        3. Great great link dude

          I love how halfway through he claims cops also victimize and violently assault women

          And this:
          "When the free market, real estate, the elected government, the legal system have all shown you they are not going to protect you?in fact, that they are the sources of the greatest violence you face?then political action becomes about stopping the machine that is trying to kill you, even if only for a moment, getting the boot off your neck, even if it only allows you a second of air."

          lol who in the world ever said the free market and real estate would protect you in any way? I didnt realize real estate was such a source of violence against blacks


    2. None of that shit would be happening if the good citizens of Baltimore could arm and defend themselves.

      1. Only the racist thug cops should have all the guns...oh wait.

      2. lol

        While *true*...

        ....as i said, everyone wants to turn this into something about their own political priorities.

        1. No matter what subject is being discussed eventually I will probably turn it into a discussion about the Second. I admit this.

          1. well, i think you probably deserve to make the point here. because it is true.

            I think it was even more true when they had similar riots in England a few years back. that was disgraceful how the cops basically backed away and people's homes/businesses be destroyed because they were terrified of the 'racial politics' of over-enforcement.

    3. Wow, great link. The web continues to give the vapors to the mainstream media (which now includes lefty "alternative" papers). And what a hilarious lie! Yeah, those three young women were trying to steal a bag from the black guy. Don't we all know how black men are regularly robbed by gangs of young white women? The way Poland invaded Germany in 1939....

      1. Hat tip = "Jim" (aka Internet Aristocrat, the guy who did so many videos about Tumblr/SJW idiots) did a chat stream last night where this was mentioned

    4. Was this a reference to that, or is the parody-reality delay down to a couple hours now?

      1. The original guy was joking but there are a bunch of idiots down below who bought the lie that the girls were trying to steal the stuff from the black guy.

        You know - just some 120 pound suburban girls out in the middle of a riot trying to steal a pink purse from a grown man who also happens to be holding a totally not stolen bottle of vodka as a chair peacefully flies by in the background.

        1. Listen, she didn't choose the thug life; it chose her.

        2. "there are a bunch of idiots down below who bought the lie that the girls were trying to steal the stuff from the black guy"

          actual *journalists* for CityPaper tried to pass off the images as exactly that.

          there was no 'misunderstanding' - a misunderstanding was intentionally created. or attempted.

          when they got busted, the magazine had to publish a non-apology-apology for what they called, "A Dumb Distraction"

          The key take away from the thing is that so-called paid journalists witnessed robberies and flying chairs and vandalism firsthand...

          ...and reported "peaceful demonstration ongoing". And tried to suppress people who said otherwise.

          1. Does "so-called" modify "journalists" or "paid"?

            1. poorly phrased. "journalists".

              The city paper waffled about how their 'tweets' weren't really 'official stories'....

              ... but its notable that journalists will use their twitter/facebook to advance narratives that are basically blatant lies and mis-characterizations of reality. Oh, and the guy who got busted for lying on facebook? Job Title ="Fact Checker"

              1. Well, that guy also wrote this article which was running the exact same narrative as the fake stories he was trying to sell on Facebook.

                So how can we trust his story about drunk sports fans instigating fights when he was trying to pull off the exact same narrative using lies? Furthermore, you'll note that he quotes another City Paper writer about the alleged racism of these sports fans:

                A tweet from City Paper contributor D. Watkins:

                D. @dwatkinsworld
                Some of the Oriole fans who got their asses whipped this weekend were taunting protesters , calling us "Apes, Niggers and Monkeys"

                Gee...it sure does seem like City Paper, as an organization, is attempting to construct a false narrative about racism and white supremacy where different City Paper contributors put out different lies and then they each quote each other's lies so that they can claim it comes from 'another source' rather than from a purposeful falsehood invented in their newsroom.

          2. Laughing my ass off at that first picture.

            "I'm trying to stop this dangerous white woman from provoking the protesters! Never mind the guy throwing a chair through a window in the background!"

            1. And the person who originally tried to claim that the photo WAS NOT a black guy trying to rob the white women?

              now says, "Just because it was 'misleading' doesn't mean it was lying'"

          3. The comments on the CityPaper article are interesting. I am shocked that CityPaper has'nt removed them and replaced them with phonies.

            1. They got nailed for libel a few years ago. It's very interesting. The woman defamed has taken to Reddit, and is considering a lawsuit.

      2. Yes

        a bunch of lefty journalists for baltimore "CityPaper" tried to spin that as 'white people interfering with a peaceful demonstration'

        (never mind the flying chair)

        they had to retract it and 'fix' their initial comments (it was an "honest mistake", not a blatant lie, of course)

        This person was the original offender.

        Lies in the service of the narrative are not "lies"

        1. I saw that tweet I linked yesterday and just assumed it was an out-of-blue joke. Had no clue that there were people earnestly claiming that the women were stealing that guys purse. (also LOL at the spout on the bottle.)

    5. This is fucking disgusting. The ends justify the means for these lying pieces of shit.

    6. Great link. Thanks for that.

  4. Does Sullum not have empathy for Hillary and find her actions understandable?

  5. If I were elected I'd banish anyone into the spirit forests of Nunavut in the dead of winter (shout out to North of 60!) who began an argument or position with 'My friend' or 'my buddy'.

    1. My friend?...I will make you a blood eagle. (Shout out to Vikings)

  6. Yet, everyone assures me that the Republicans are no better than the Democrats.


    Let me see how simply I can say this. Yes, the Republican party still has a lot of work to do. But, they're doing it. The Democrats were never particularly friendly to liberty. And they've been moving against it for years now.

    I'm not one of those morons insisting that libertarians owe Republicans their vote. But, if you actually care about liberty, it only makes sense to give the Republicans a fair hearing and active engagement.

    1. The Republicans are better than the democrats, no doubt. Partly because some of them are principled, at least in the beginning, and partly because the Republican base is largely and genuinely principled and must be catered to.

      The Dems have neither of those things going for them.

      1. ...and partly because the Republican base is largely and genuinely principled and must be catered to.

        I always assumed that discussion was about the voters. But, honestly, what you cite is the reason Republicans make better hunting ground for libertarianism than Democrats. Conservatives are wrong. Progressives are just evil. Sixty, maybe seventy, percent of conservatives, if they genuinely thought through the principles they espouse, would have to conclude that libertarianism is basically right. I don't see how any progressives would reach that conclusion.

        1. Progressives don't reach conclusions. For them the end always justifies the means and the end is always the same: more power.

        2. Progressivism has also gotten vastly more anti-intellectual just in my lifetime. I vaguely recall progressives at least being a bit sharper than the average conservative even 10 years ago, but progressives have now essentially done away with the very concept of objective fact and are living in some nonsensical PoMo lala land where Badfacts must be ignored.

          This is especially true of modern feminists. Young feminists in particular will outright admit that they don't care about evidence and that if you try and disprove any of your claims it's just because you like rape.

          1. No one is as stupid as a Creationist Bible Beating Christ-Faggot "man" who loves his fucking Jew "Saviour" who is coming back to avenge the Romans.

            Sorry for the reality infusion but you fucking needed it.

            1. Why the non American spelling of "savior"? I thought you were a good ol' Georgia boy.

              You wouldn't lie about that, would you?

              1. I read a lot of Brit fiction. John Fowles is my favorite and 'The Magus' is my favorite post WWII novel.

                Also 'All the King's Men'.. close betwixt the two.

                NINE NINE NINE!

                1. Palin's Buttplug|4.28.15 @ 10:19PM|#
                  "I read a lot of Brit fiction."

                  I'm sure the ones with a lot of pictures.
                  Fuck off, turd

              2. No one is as stupid as...

                He shouldn't sell himself short. He wins the Special Olympics of stupidity.

                And, "Faggot"? I thought he was gay.


            2. Palin's Buttplug|4.28.15 @ 10:06PM|#
              "Sorry for the reality infusion but you fucking needed it."

              A classic case of "projection"; an ignorant prog lecturing others on "reality"! What a laugh.
              Fuck off, turd.

            3. No one is as stupid as a Creationist Bible Beating Christ-Faggot "man" who loves his fucking Jew "Saviour" who is coming back to avenge the Romans.

              Sorry for the reality infusion but you fucking needed it.

              Wow. PB went full retard on this one.

              So some Grandma who goes to church on Sundays is less crazy than these people?

              There are sane and insane Christians. There are like 9 sane feminists left.

              1. Christ Fags are latent homo types.
                Seriously, look at the Catholic Church.

                Hell, Look at the Southern Baptist Church. They are all fags - buttsex for Christ!.

                That is a goddamn fact.

                1. No, It;s the incoherent ramblings of a delusional troll.

                  1. Do you profess your love of Jesus Christ and you are a male?

                    You're a Christ-Fag then.

                    1. Palin's Buttplug|4.28.15 @ 10:44PM|#
                      "Do you profess your love of Jesus Christ and you are a male?
                      You're a Christ-Fag then."

                      Ya know, turd, you probably ought to keep your daddy-issues out of the public eye.

                2. Palin's Buttplug|4.28.15 @ 10:38PM|#

                  I knew I'd seen such an asshole before!

            4. Yeah, you've got to admit that creationist Bible types are a cultural force to be reckoned with these days. Their recent advances have given them near-total control of government, the news media, Hollywood, the educational system, and the huge non-profits! Who among us, besides our brave Buttplug, is brave enough to stand against this advancing onslaught?

              1. I remember recently there were two major news stories about Christians being raped by atheists that turned out to be nothing but pro-Christian propaganda which was bought by a gullible Christian-centric media.

              2. Yeah, you've got to admit that creationist Bible types are a cultural force to be reckoned with these days.

                It is called the GOP.

                There is not one Republican who will stand up for secularism like our Constitution requires.

                1. I'm an atheist and an anarchist. And I have more money that you even though I'm 20 years younger. Tell me more about what I believe and who I want to fuck.

                  I'll be waiting,

                  1. Playa - if you suck conservative dick you are a Christ faggot.

                    You call it.

                    1. Palin's Buttplug|4.28.15 @ 11:03PM|#
                      "Playa - if you suck conservative dick you are a Christ faggot."

                      Did your daddy say he wouldn't suck your cock tonight turd? Aw, what a shame!

                    2. Again. I am an anarchist. I don't vote. I don't give a shit about how your religious family rejected you; it's not my problem.

                      If you want to be a fucking baller, why to you continue to live in Jesus Fuck, Georgia?

                      Have you heard of LA, NY, or SF? A financial genius like you should fit in just fine. Move to LA. I'll even have beers with you, and look the other way when you go to the shitter to do some blow. Let's hang out! What's the problem?

                    3. "A financial genius like you should fit in just fine"

                      Which explains the Snakes Navel, GA address.

                    4. Playa - if you suck conservative dick you are a Christ faggot.

                      Claims the guy who can't get Obama's cock out of his mouth.

                2. Palin's Buttplug|4.28.15 @ 10:52PM|#

                  Yeah, tired, turd.

        3. Yes, a Jeb Bush or Rubio presidency will be a boon to civil rights. Just like the GW Bush presidency was.

          You people are fools to think the modern Republican Party gives a damn about limited government or criminal justice reform.

          1. Yes, a Jeb Bush or Rubio presidency will be a boon to civil rights. Just like the GW Bush presidency was.

            I really see no reason to believe that either would be any worse than a Hillary Clinton presidency. I won't vote for any of the three. But, the thing is, Bush and Rubio have people like Rand Paul, or even Ted Cruz within the GOP saying they're wrong. Clinton with the Democrats? Well, not so much.

  7. Also...

    "Ted Cruz Is Smarter Than Hillary Clinton"

    Micro-aggressive war on women!

  8. "On Criminal Justice Reform, Ted Cruz Is Smarter Than Hillary Clinton"

    Well, if you set the bar low enough....

    1. Hillary's bar is so low that a snake at the bottom of the Grand Canyon would still be higher than it.

      1. Oh please! To pass a bar lower than Shillary, you would need James Cameron. That measure isn't at the bottom of the Grand Canyon, but at the bottom of Challenger Deep.

    2. I got into it with someone, when i laid out all of the reasons Hillary would be a terrible president, who kept trying to turn the conversation to how bad Bush was. All i had to do was say, "so your standard for what makes a good president is just someone who is better than Bush? Is that really how low the bar is for Democrats?"

  9. I posted about that Protein World company that has been mocking SJWs on twitter, and I just discovered a Real Thread of Genius.

    Juliette Burton ?@JulietteBurton Apr 23
    I spent life believing I'm not good enough: I signed #perfectlyimperfect @ProteinWorld #eachbodysready

    Protein World ?@ProteinWorld Apr 23
    @JulietteBurton @UKChange why make your insecurities our problem

    Juliette Burton ?@JulietteBurton Apr 23
    .@ProteinWorld @UKChange Because adverts like yours add to the external voices telling young girls they're not good enough as they are.

    Protein World
    @JulietteBurton and it's ok to be fat and out of shape instead of healthy? We are a nation of sympathisers for fatties #doesnthelpanyone


    The salty ham tears over there are delicious.

      1. TOTAL LOSS OF SELF-AWARENESS IN....3....2....1:

        Mitch Benn ?@MitchBenn Apr 23
        @janeyk72 @ProteinWorld @JaneyGodley @JulietteBurton Who gives a fuck what they think.

        Well, given that you guys are freaking the fuck out about an advertisement they made, I'd say you 'give a fuck what they think.'

        Same person literally five minutes later:

        Mitch Benn ?@MitchBenn Apr 23
        @MerylORourke @RaeEarl I can ignore the crass fucking ad but whoever's running their Twitter needs firing like a fucking starter's pistol


      1. HM,
        I can appreciate their replies to the whiners, but let's face it, they're selling snake oil. And NO ONE buys GMO snake oil!

          1. Sorry, HM. No way I'm slogging through some cartoon to find the punch line.

            1. The phrase "genetic tissues" is heard at :10!

              1. Yeah, but not a word about Monsanto.

    1. And shame on the Internet for not yet responding with this.

  10. Ted 'Savonarola' Cruz vs Hil-Dog 'pro Iraq War' Clinton?

    Fuck us all in the ass for eternity if this is the best we can do.

    1. I can't jerk my rage boner to this. Say something stupid. Be yourself.

        1. I like pressure on the down stroke.

  11. Democrats who think Hillary Clinton is savvier or smarter than Cruz may reconsider after reading these essays side by side.

    No, that crowd really won't.

  12. OT: Dan Uggla is now officially on my shit list. He couldn't hit a fucking beach ball for 3 years with the Braves, but manages to hit like Ted Williams against us. Also, fuck the Braves for giving up an 8 run lead.

    1. I live in DogDick Ga! We could be neighbors!

      1. Palin's Buttplug|4.28.15 @ 10:40PM|#
        "I live in DogDick Ga! We could be neighbors!"

        No way, turd. He'd have smelled you by now and moved.
        Oh, and fuck off.

    2. As a nats fan, I felt a tingle during that game.

  13. No fresh riot thread this evening?

    1. Whoa! I wonder how much of this is true? (Note: the embedded link does not work, but you can get Freddie Gray's court records at http://casesearch.courts.state.md.us/ .)

      John Guest Rank 60
      Freddy Gray had a pre existing spinal and neck injury and had severe damage and scar tissue from an accident that Allstate Insurance was paying him a large structured settlement. Freddy had several unsuccessful spinal fusion surgeries, he most recent spinal/cervical operation was a week and a half before he was arrested. Freddy should have been at home in bed resting and recovering from recent major operation instead of manufacturing and distributing drugs on the streets and resisting arrest arrest. Freddy has a a criminal record pages long for manufacturing and distributing controlled dangerous drugs that were cocaine crack heroine etc along with many assault charges, gun charges, breaking and entering and the list goes on since he was 18 years old. (Juvenile records are sealed.) Look at some of this on www[badlink]mdjudiciarycasesearch.

      (1 of 2)

      1. That sounds like bullshit because I went to the court site and could find no civil cases that would warrant an Allstate payment.

        1. I admit I'm not seeing "You will also see where he was trying to cash in his monthly structured settlement for his spinal injury payments to one lump sum through Peachtree Funding." I want to see evidence of that. However, would the court site necessarily have a reference to the Allstate accident/settlement? Lots of times cases like that are handled outside the courts.

          1. You don't understand, I couldn't even find a civil case. I searched for Freddy Gray (that's the name he appears under in their system, I can tell because it says he was born in 1989) and I found two criminal arrests which have occurred after his 18th birthday. Everything before that was expunged.

            What I didn't find was any evidence of a civil case. Unless someone will show me evidence a civil case that could have been settled like this even exists, I'm not going to believe it.

            1. A direct link isn't possible, because you have to accept terms and conditions, but the post at my link above has screenshots regarding his case with Allstate and Peachtree. Go to the md.us link, accept the terms, and search for case number 13C14101574. Bingo.

        2. It looks like there is something to all this. This includes links and images of the Peachtree settlement case.

          I think this is worthy of A.M. Links, and I want a hat-tip.

        3. The Allstate settlement and the sale of the settlement to Peachtree is on there, case number 13C14101574.

          If that is the correct freddie gray jr., and what the settlement is for isn't on there.

          1. I googled the address. There's a story about the family buying a house on that street with the lead money.

          2. True, but if we still have real reporters around these days, they'll be calling his attorney right now:

            Carol L. Vassallo, Esq.
            Vassallo Law Group, LLC
            251 Jessup Mill Road, Suite 2A
            Clarksboro, NJ 08020

            and asking: Did you represent the deceased Freddie Gray in this case? Did he have recent neck surgery?

          3. The address given appears to match articles as well.

            Still he was in custody for a week before he died. It is still gross negligence by the system that he died.

            1. Also clearly this isn't evidence in any way that he had surgery a week before being arrested, or that even if it did it caused his death.

              And especially, selling drugs on a street corner, even if retarded because you should be in bed after surgery, should not be a crime.

              1. "And especially, selling drugs on a street corner, even if retarded because you should be in bed after surgery, should not be a crime."

                And, further, even if it *is* a crime, it is not a capital offense. At least until Obo's next executive order.

            2. Yes, the charge of negligence seems warranted, but it still changes the narrative. The SJWs (and others) want this to be: "Another largely innocent black man randomly murdered by racist police." But what if the true story is: "Lead-addled career criminal in a city with a black police chief and a black mayor is too stupid to follow crucial post-neck-surgery instructions, gets into a fight with black policemen, it aggravates his wound, and he dies from lack of proper medical attention"? To me, that's a very different story.

              1. gets into a fight with black policemen,

                Where the fuck did you pull this one?

                a city with a black police chief and a black mayor is too stupid

                This has nothing to do with his possible preexisting injury and was already an ignored narrative.

                Yeah, it might matter in a civil suit to reduce damages, or in a criminal trial (HAH as if these fucks will ever be held accountable) to point to a lower charge. But that is all. It doesn't matter in the grand scheme of things.

                1. You're right, I don't have a source for the race of the six arresting officers who were suspended. I read that in a comment somewhere. But I was simply postulating a different story, not proclaiming it as true. That's why I wrote: "what if the true story is."

                  1. No where is your source that he got into a fight?

                    1. Same thing. I read about them chasing him down, and then dragging him into the van. This picture shows three (white) cops arresting him. The cops don't seem to be struggling, and he seems to be, but not in an aggressive way. He just looks in pain. But they did chase him down, right? Though we don't know the details of that part.

                      But as I said, I was postulating an alternative story with every detail pushed in a new direction. Maybe the "struggle" happened at the end of the chase (or "chase"), or maybe in the van, or both places, or not at all. And if those are three of the six cops suspended, then it looks like at least three weren't black. And again, I don't think this exonerates anyone, but it complicates the story.

                    2. Where in that story does it say that Gray got in a fight with the police? Nowhere.

    2. (2 of 2)

      You will also see where he was trying to cash in his monthly structured settlement for his spinal injury payments to one lump sum through Peachtree Funding, He could have easily fallen in the paddy wagon from the slippery bench to the floor or twisted his fused spine to reopen his recently fused damaged spine. Also, the police that arrested him were also black, not white. Why are people destroying their own homes and revenue when they don't know the whole story? Mostly because it's a good reason and timing to loot and get new shoes and stolen goods? You got it! None of the police officers that arrested Freddy had a history of police brutality. Freddy was a dangerous career felon with a damaged spine and neck that was supposed to be healing a week and a half after surgery, Not running the streets committing felonies and resisting arrest.

      1. Given the source it is pretty safe to say that very little is true. If there is even one true fact there the context will be twisted so that all of the conclusions are the inverse of the truth.

        1. It's literally a random commenter on a website who is completely anonymous and who has offered no evidence a civil suit even exists.

          Color me skeptical.

          1. Looks real. See my 11:22 post above.

      2. I'm willing to believe he had spinal injuries beforehand, but I doubt Freddy also had a crushed larynx before being accosted by Balmer's finest.This sounds a lot like the excuses made for Garner's death.

        Is it too much to ask that the police subdue suspects without killing them? That's why we have police for crime and soldiers for war.

        1. True about the larynx. I'm not saying this exonerates anyone, but these are interesting factors, if true. Maybe this case is somewhere in between Brown and Garner.

          1. I'm not saying this exonerates anyone, but these are interesting factors, if true.

            Interesting? Why? They seem completely irrelevant to the subject of if Grey was abused by police. Interesting because it fits your racist narrative that if Grey was criminal enough, no harm done? What exactly is "interesting"?

            Honestly, Papaya, I suggested to a friend yesterday that some piece of shit industrial turd gobbler would claim that his back was already broken. Would claim that he died from something other than the violence applied by the pigs. Eric Gardner didn't die from choking but because he was fat, kind of thing. I told my friend that it was exactly that kind of scum that prevented any real reform.

            I am dissapoint that person turned out to be you.

            1. Calm down. I never said "no harm done" and in fact said the opposite. I'm interested in the totality of circumstances, not simply whether this can fit into the box called "police abuse." The proposed narrative of "they severed his spine!" is changed a bit if he had a severe neck injury beforehand.

              It weakens the argument against police abuse if the martyrs keep being either hoaxes (Mike Brown) or people whose actions contribute to their own fates (Rodney King, Eric Garner). Contributing to your own fate doesn't excuse police abuse, but to be fair we should look at all factors.

  14. I recall Chris Hitchens excoriating Bubba Clinton for the execution of a mentally incompetent prisoner to score some political points.


  15. It's going to be hilarious if this turns out to be another a hype/hoax like Trayvon Martin or Mike Brown. This one even pulled me in. The possibility of the neck injury being (in part) a pre-existing condition never occurred to me.

    Of course, the cops still could have roughed him up, and it seems like they delayed getting him medical care. So I don't think his case will turn out to be the near-total SWJ fail that Martin and Brown were. But still, if that post is true, that changes things.

    1. His neck was already broken before the pigs beat him up? That's what you're going with?

      1. I'm not "going with it" in the sense of saying it exonerates anyone. I just said that. It's entirely possible, even likely, they roughed him up a bit. But if Gray was supposed to be wearing a support collar and taking it easy after surgery, and instead was running from the cops and struggling with them, that changes the game, no? One commenter thinks even a crushed larynx can come this kind of neck injury alone. I have no idea. That detail does seem bad for the cop side of things. As does the delay in getting medical care for him. But that's still not the same as "The cops severed his spine!!" Not good, but not the same.

        1. He never should have been arrested in the first place, pre-existing condition or not. And he was in custody for a week after arrest and died in custody. This doesn't "change the game" at all.

        2. I mean but for the actions of the police he wouldn't be dead.

        3. This is a reputation based economy here. So listen very carefully.

          His spinal injury was caused by a knee to the back of the neck while he was laying on the ground. I'm not going to spout my credentials here, but I assure you that such a tactic is not authorized by any police department in this country. Officers are trained to not do such a thing. It is a guaranteed trip to the hospital in the best case scenario.

          A knee to the back of the neck has known consequences. There's no way around that.

          1. You could be right, Playa, though I don't think a knee to the neck always does this, there is no doubt a risk. Maybe the cops thought they could get away with it, but didn't know about his neck surgery. Maybe he told them and they didn't believe him. I don't know.

            This could an Eric Garner situation: a guy with a rap sheet and a major pre-existing condition gets into a struggle with cops over minor b.s., gets injured due to condition+struggle, then he doesn't get prompt medical care and he dies. But I still think these details (if true) would change the game, to a degree.

          2. Suspension of judgment would seem to be called for, actually.

            The narrative collapsed completely in the Trayvon Martin case, and some commenters said some dumb things. Let's see where this goes before judging that it has no relevance.

            Your first sentence is odd given what you did after it.

            1. He was in custody for a week before he died in custody. In what fucking scenario is that not the governments fault? And he was arrested for possession of a switch blade, a complete non-crime.

            2. "Your first sentence is odd given what you did after it."

              To whom is this directed?

    2. Like I said above, pretty sure he wasn't walking around with a crushed larynx.

    3. It's going to be hilarious

      I was way too generous above, you fucking piece of shit. I hope that you get murdered by the pigs so we can all say how "hilarious" it was! DIAF

      Stormfront is that way -

  16. Does Ted want to launch his Cruz-missile into Hillary?

    1. "A former Clinton speechwriter"

      I'm going to put this in the "con" column. Most of the good things Clinton did were accidental.

    2. I'm pretty sure Chris Hedges will have a lock on that for the rest of his life:


      1. Did he get fired from anywhere for copy/pasting Hemingway?

        1. No. I guess that's why he dresses like Morpheus from the Matrix:


        2. It turns out that Hedges has routinely stolen sources ranging from the sublime (Ernest Hemingway) to the ridiculous (Naomi Klein), and specializes in what journalism professors call "patchwriting . . . restating a phrase, clause, or one or more sentences while staying close to the language or syntax of the source." Ketcham was first alerted to Hedges's plagiarism when he discovered that his own wife's work had been pilfered, and went on to learn how a fact-checker at Harper's discovered that Hedges had lifted long passages from a Philadelphia Inquirer story. When confronted with the facts, Hedges was characteristically evasive and bullying; but Harper's, to its credit, declined to publish the piece.


          1. Plagiarizing Naomi Klein. I thought you were supposed to copy off the smart kids.

            "Africa is poor because its investors and its creditors are unspeakably rich."

            - Naomi Klein

            There is so much stupidity packed into that sentence.

            1. A real quote? Wow. But I bet 2/3rds of SF and Berkeley would nod in agreement.

            2. Derpetologist|4.29.15 @ 12:46AM|#
              "Plagiarizing Naomi Klein."

              He designed some buildings, but they caught him copying Frank Loyd Wrong!
              His paintings were mistaken for Kinkaids!
              And early automotive design was found to be lifted from Tebbant!
              The guy's a wonder!

    1. I needed Google to figure out who they are, but pretty good. Needs just a touch more graphic design knowledge.

    1. Brandon Soderberg, who was present and wrote of the riot said:

      That's where we got the image of a protester, who was most certainly looting, who looks like he's stealing a purse, but I was there and I'm really not sure if that's what is happening.

      Well, if he's obviously looting, then he isn't a protester, now is he? Why am I not surprised to learn that this turd burglar used to write for Rolling Stone?


      1. The redhead in the video speaks. Looks like City Paper will have a lawsuit on their hands.

        The redhead, Mr. Gray Goose, a SJW fact-checker at an alt-weekly: this is like a Tom Wolfe novel.

    1. I'm not sure why you think they sound angry.

      The Koch brothers sure turned Somalia into a shithole, though.

      Also, I'm very curious how you ended up on CCTV* Africa's YouTube channel.

      *China Central Television, for those of you not in the know.

      1. Te way he clips his words at the end. I know he's not upset but it sounds that way.

        And sometimes when you search for something you end up following links and, well, there you are.

  17. Actual Brandon Soderberg quote from a Pitchfork review:

    Chillwave engulfed indie pop this year, and though Toro Y Moi provided good vibes just like the rest of those post-grad loafers, Causers of This eschewed privileged ennui so it could soundtrack wizened acceptance.

    Golly gee! Does it counterpoint the surrealism of the underlying metaphor?


    1. I used to be with it, but then they changed what *it* was. Now what I'm with isn't *it*, and what's *it* seems weird and scary to me.

  18. OT: Are there any statistics that show an increase in the rates of black people (or people in general) being killed by the police?

    Is it possible that the rates of these incidents are not actually increasing, but rather that the media is making every one of them into a top story, causing a perception that they are increasing? It sounds like there may be a feedback loop where every time it happens, it makes police violence into an even bigger issue, and this increases the likelihood that news networks will report on what might otherwise be merely a local news story.

    That may or may not be the case. I'm just wondering if there is any evidence that this trend is actually increasing.

    1. I don't know the trend, but I've read that whites are actually more likely to be killed by police. Sorry, too lazy to find the reference now.

      1. No, more white are probably killed by the police but almost certainly not more per capita.

        1. Not per capita, no. But I wonder about the comparative odds for blacks and whites killed by cops, versus blacks and whites killed by non-cops.

    2. I'd be surprised if the rate was increasing, but stuff like the Internet, cell phones, and 24/7 national news networks make such incidents more high-profile, which causes even more anger in reaction. But while police brutality, misconduct, and lack of accountability might be issues that are only recently receiving significant mainstream attention and recognition, they've been well-known realities for decades (or longer) in many communities in this country.

      1. At least Obama will end this odious racial discourse.

    3. Not likely ever going to know because the police all track that information differently and many do no differentiate between people killed in the line of duty and those killed by excessive force or plain murder. They just track them all as homicides.

  19. http://twitchy.com/2014/12/31/.....s-of-2014/

    My fav:

    Conservatives rely heavily on bad faith arguments, so liberals need to hold ourselves to a higher standard.

    -Amanda Marcotte

    1. Projection is not just something done in movie theaters.

  20. Freddie Gray would still be alive if he drank Dracula's blood:


  21. It's hard out there for a Minister of Defence.

  22. I'll have their guts for garters!

  23. "Ted Cruz Is Smarter Than Hillary Clinton"

    Well, yes, I suspect he is. But there are things growing on damp bread that are smarter than Hillary Clinton.

  24. Ted Cruz has the smarts and intelligence that America needs and the effective skills to communicate solutions and impart vision and focus to Americans of all ages as one American people undivided. He is best for America in the days we live in today. What makes Ted so dangerous to the left and good for America is that he is the antithesis and the unraveling of 90 years of communist strategy to destroy America from the inside out.

    Josef Stalin, murderous communist dictator of Russia said, "America is like a healthy body and its resistance is threefold; It's patriotism, its morality and its spiritual life. If we can undermine these three areas, America will collapse from within." National sponsored drug addiction destroys the spirit of a nations citizens. The soviet art of brainwashing one of the communists objectives was centered around promoting drugs of every sort in order to create the necessary attitudes of apathy or "could-care-less-ness" such that they would lack the gumption to stop tyranny when it arises from government.

    Ted Cruz and the rise conservative movement spells the end of the greatest and most stealth weapon socialist progressives are using against America; its called human vice through demoralization.

    Young People Overthrow Democrats, Socialist Progressives and Liberals who Misled Them

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