Friday, August 31, 2012

The 2 Chainz "Birthday Song" Video Is So Terrible, I'm Speechless.

Personally, my favorite part begins at the 1:10 mark.

RNC Night Three Recap/Open Mic.

Congrats America! You've officially reached rock bottom!
While there were a couple of other primetime speeches from 2012 Candidate Mitt Romney and 2016 candidate Marco Rubio last night, one geriatric, possibly demented Hollywood actor stole the show.

I don't know who to feel worse for: Eastwood or the RNC. Actually, I don't feel sorry for any of these losers.
If I'm one of those mythical "openminded Independent voters" who allegedly decides the election, it's hard to see how this display of classlessness advances the GOP's cause. Seriously, addressing the President as an empty chair? Mockingly asserting that the President would tell him to "shut up" and "go f*ck himself".
The most egregious line (obviously) was "we OWN this country!" which was followed by tremendous applause by an audience that was almost 99% white.
Sorry, I fail to understand how this helps. At all.
Actually, I do. If I were a betting man I'd swear this whole Eastwood speech was an inside job by #TeamObama. That might explain something.
As for Romney, his speech was effective, deceptive, and low on specifics for how he'd fix the mess he allegedly is an expert at fixing. But hey, who expects specifics?
Now if you'll excuse me, I'm going to destroy my copy of Gran Torino.
Question: Does this bizarre Eastwood "speech" hurt Romney's chances?

Thursday, August 30, 2012

Every GOP Stereotype About Black America Confirmed. In Just 4 Minutes.

Seriously, black folks: do better.

Random thoughts...
Why can't he pronounce "Cartier" correctly?!?

Why are two allegedly responsible black newspeople putting together such an exploitative news story like this? The NABJ needs to look into this.

I need that song for my ringtone. "Blawww Bling Blawww Blawww!"

Isn't his story somewhat plausible? He is disabled. I sorta agree that he'd have a hard time removing a hot water heater by himself. I think it's entirely possible that someone illegally rented the home to his girlfriend. When moved out once she was informed she wasn't there legally. She (or someone else) trashed the house after the fact.

Poppin' sh*t while engulfed in a cypress tree = gangsta.

Unpaved roads in a major American city? Werd?

Admit it, you sorta expected to see an accident when they pulled off at the end.

I'm suddenly hongry for some Benihanas myself.
Question: Can someone from Detroit please explain ya'll obsession with Benihana? I'm pretty sure I know why, but just wanted to hear from a resident.

RNC Night Two Recap/Open Mic.

So, Grownup Eddie Munster spoke last night at the RNC. I'm not gonna lie: if you're a "Real American" who lives in Real Amurricah, this speech prolly was your version of "I Have A Dream". Ryan did a masterful job of weaving his personal story of American ambition with a series of throat chops against the incumbent President. His speech was full of soaring oratory, and the crowd was absolutely in the palm of his hands. If this was the intended effect of picking Ryan over other contenders like Chris Christie or Marco Rubio, I'd say Mitt Romney's selection was spot on.

Three minor issues though.

1) Ryan lied more than a 2nd grader during Show & Tell.

2) Ryan offered nary a solution to all the problems he spoke of.

3) See Point 1) again. I mean, seriously, this was a fact checker's wet dream.

Of course, lies only matter if someone happens to check the liar. After a week full of distortions and half truths, it would be nice if Obama and Co. spend next week pointing out these minor inaccuracies. And in typical grand Democratic fashion, I'm sure they'll do no such thing.


Condi Rice also spoke. Since I like Dr. Rice, I'll say nothing bad about her here. At all.

I don't know who was on the undercard, nor do I care.

Mittens is on deck tonight. If you need a sleep aid, tune in to your local affiliate around 10pm. It'll surely do the trick.

Question: What did you think of Lyin', errr, Ryan's speech? Will the Democrats hit back? Is Romney gonna be the biggest snoozer of this entire SnoozeFest tonight?

Wednesday, August 29, 2012 Guest Post - One Racist Apple Don't Spoil The Whole Bunch.

[Editor's Note: Black Folks' Twitter was ablaze last night as news broke that one particularly ignorant RNC attendee committed a heinous act against a member of the media. While CNN has been remarkably tightlipped about the whole incident, my homie @TwoNuse has a few words on the matter. As usual, show our guest some love, you know where.]

Everyone has that member of the family that always says or does the wrong thing. Calling the Hawaiian wife of your cousin ‘Oriental’ at a cookout or brings up the time you went home with someone in Cam’ron’s entourage at your wedding. Everyone has that crazy member of their family.

Even the Republican National Committee.

Last night, ironically the night they let all the non-white men speak, a couple of attendees reportedly threw nuts at a black CNN camerawoman, with the charming explanation, "this is how we feed the animals." The attendees (it is not known whether they were convention representatives or guests) were thrown out and the convention condemned the incident.

Okay, a couple of people in the hall got overserved and did their worst Don Rickels impersonation. They were dealt with, that is that. Right?
John Podhoretz things so:
Which is true (although he changes the two pigs to one since two would be a trend), that one or two dopes in a large group don’t speak for said group.

Except when the aforementioned crazy aunt says or does something foolish, the non-crazy members of the family do their best to rectify matters. If I have a family gathering and one of my guests throws a ball through a window of a neighbor, it is my responsibility as the host to at the very least to pay for repairs. For such an insulting display, allowing the miscreants to go unnamed and tossing them as if they got too drunk and puked in the corner doesn’t seem to match up. Are they tossed for the duration of the convention? If they are a part of the convention, have they had their credentials pulled? If they are members of the party, will they be allowed to hold any positions of authority?

In contrast, look at how the Republican Party treated Rep. Todd Akin after his ‘legitimate rape’ comments. Everyone from Mitt Romney down to the guy who empties the wastebaskets in Reince Priebus’ office denounced Akin and asked him politely to leave the planet Earth (or at least the Missouri Senate race).

I’ve said to friends in the past I would like the opportunity to vote for a Republican in my lifetime. Meaning not only would I live in a geographical area when the Republican candidate was the most attractive one for me, but that I wouldn’t feel like I was voting for a group who actively dislike me merely due to melanin content. Every time the Republican machinery misses an stress free opportunity to apologize for their crazy aunt, I move farther and farther away from that possibility.

Question: Should the RNC formally address this incident, or is it their responsibility to apologize for this moron?!?

RNC Night One Recap/Open Mic.

Yeah, I watched it, so you don't have to. All of it. Here are my quick takeaways...

We Built This! - While I find it amazing that the GOP built their entire convention around the false premise of a mangled soundbyte, something even more ironic stuck out to me. They protest government interference, but are attending a convention that's secured by policemen, paid for by government grants, and taking place in a sports arena mostly paid for by taxpayers. Anyone with an iota of self-awareness would note the folly in this equation, but this is the GOP we're talking about. The same people who had Herman Cain ahead in the polls for a good month last year. Yep, they built this.

Diversity Of Color Isn't Diversity Of Thought - It's easy to look at last night's lineup that feature two blacks, a few Hispanics, one Sikh, and one certified idiot (Santorum) and conclude that the GOP is expanding its tent. Whatever. They all spouted the same numbnutted "We Built This!" nonsense, so does that really equal diversity?

Mia Love Has A Future. Somewhere. - I'll give the GOP this much: Mia Love, the black female Mormon running for Congress from Utah (whew!) comes across as polished[1] and while an Obama attack dog, is mild mannered and professional. She prolly will lose her election in November, but the party would be wise to either move her somewhere she can win, or redraw her district so she can win. She's a fresh face (although notably lacking in fresh ideas) who I can easily see holding court on Fox News. I wouldn't vote for her, but at least she's something (somewhat) new.

Birthers In The Hizzouse! - Janine Turner, washed up 80's actress and frequent Lifetime Movies For Women Heroine, took the stage after Love and spouted a bunch of jibberish about "freedom". She's also a noted birther, so take that for what you will.

Artur Davis Is For Sale - This Negro here... Man, I gotta tell ya'. When I see turncoats like Davis, it just reminds me of that old adage made famous by a certain 80's wrassler. "Everyone has a price." Apparently, the GOP paid Davis in nickels and headpats. And oh yeah, Negro, please cut that high top fade off. I know you're from Alabama and whatnot, but 1991 called. It wants its haircut back.

Boring White Guys - A procession of dry speakers whose names I should prolly know, but don't even care to Google padded the time between The Colored Folks Segment and Ann Romney. Other than Santorum, who said some really creepy stuff about hands for 10 straight minutes, none of this was memorable. Sorry.

Ann Romney Just Really, Really, Really Wants You To Love Her Husband. And Her. - In 2008, I remarked that while I enjoyed Michelle Obama's Denver speech, I found it a week bit sad that she had to expend so much energy convincing Americans that she wasn't some Angela Davis-style radical in disguise, just a hardworking woman who played by all the rules and came up. By contrast, Ann Romney's, "Sure, I got twin Cadillacs and a car elevator, but trust me, I'm just like you!" speech just came across as pandering. Seriously, Mrs. Romney, nobody beleives you and Mitt "struggled" and subsisted on tuna fish and crackers while living in a basement apartment. The fact that he comes from an affluent family and yours wasn't exactly poor either means you both had people you could fall back on. Most of us don't. Starting life on 3rd base and celebrating when you score a run doesn't make you great, nor an aspirational character. It just makes you sound phony. And oh yeah, we get it, you "love all the women!" Enough pandering already. Sheesh.

Chris Christie Is Out For Self - Seriously, if you didn't have any context, you woulda assumed Big C.R.I.S. was the one running for President. His speech has more "I's" and "Me's" than a a Kanye West song. He also didn't do his patented "attack dawg/curse out teachers" move and didn't mention Romney until the final minutes of his half hour speech, which meant the big man came across as soft and self-centered. Either this was an audition for 2016, or aimed at his NJ re-election bid in 2013, when Corey Booker will be coming for that title. Either way, I don't think Mitt was too happy about this one.

I don't plan on watching tonight's festivities, since my brain cells are already depleted enough, and the Redskins are playing. Priorities, people. Priorities.

Question: Did you watch any of "We Built This"-Fest 2012? What were your thoughts?

[1] Never mind those box braids.

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Chris Matthews Goes Completely H.A.M. On RNC Chair.

Eff' decorum, sometimes you gotta call em' like you see em'. And Reince Priebus damn sure had this one coming.

While it's true that very little of this has anything to do with policy[1], it's good to see someone from the right completely called out for their bullsh*t. What's a little strange is watching the others on the yet act so... awkward as the whole thing unfolds. Mika in particular, looks like she'd much rather be somewhere else.

Way to support your colleague, folks.

Question: Does Priebus have a leg to stand on? Do you miss Michael Steele yet?!?

[1] Unless you think much of the obstruction Obama's encountering from Congress is motivated by race, which is a theory that certainly is not without merit.

Fear Of A Black President.

I don't typically redirect readers of my blog to opinion pieces elsewhere, but this lengthy essay by Ta-Nehisi Coates in this month's print edition of The Atlantic is a worthy read.

Print it out and peruse over lunch. Just take my word for it.

Fear of a Black President [The Atlantic]

Monday, August 27, 2012 Open Mic Monday.

Just getting back in town, so I'll be brief today. Here's the rundown.

Obama, Romney neck-and-neck as parties convene

Isaac churns toward New Orleans

Chris Matthews Accuses Reince Priebus, GOP Of Playing Race Card: ‘It’s Your Garbage’

Fmr. Gov. Charlie Crist Endorses Obama, Slams GOP’s Shift To ‘Extreme Right’

AP Poll: Raise taxes to save Social Security

Question: What's on your mind today?

Friday, August 24, 2012

Mitt Romney (Regrettably) Makes A Birther Joke.

Welcome to rock bottom, folks.
Mitt Romney, who has decried the nasty personal tone of the presidential campaign, seemed to make a joke about President Obama’s birth certificate while speaking to voters here Friday, re-injecting the issue of the president’s birthplace into the campaign.

“Now I love being home in this place where Ann and I were raised, where both of us were born,” Mr. Romney said, standing alongside his wife, Ann, and his running mate, Representative Paul D. Ryan. “Ann was born in Henry Ford Hospital. I was born in Harper Hospital. No one’s ever asked to see my birth certificate. They know that this is the place that we were born and raised.”

Mr. Romney is a Michigan native — his father, George Romney, was the state’s governor — and seemed to be speaking off the cuff. But his campaign quickly scrambled to walk back his comments, saying he was simply sharing his Michigan pride.

“The governor has always said, and has repeatedly said, he believes the president was born here in the United States,” said Kevin Madden, an adviser to Mr. Romney, who served as governor of Massachusetts. “He was only referencing that Michigan, where he is campaigning today, is the state where he himself was born and raised.”

In his introduction Thursday, Mr. Ryan, too, seemed to emphasize cultural differences with Mr. Obama, taking pains to include his exurban, nearly all-white audience at an orchard and farm here within a circle excluding the president.

“Remember about four years ago when he was talking to a bunch of donors in San Francisco and he said people in states like ours, we cling to our guns and our religion?” Mr. Ryan said, emphasizing the word “ours.” It was a reference to Mr. Romney’s native Michigan and Mr. Ryan’s Wisconsin, but also, it seemed, to differences based on religion and class.

“I just have one thing to say,” Mr. Ryan added. “This Catholic deer hunter is guilty as charged, and proud of it.”
Here's the video. Complete with a rather reviling crowd reaction.

Romney needs to own this one. As much as he complained about Joe "2Chainz" Biden's pandering comment last week, this is worse.

And he prolly wonders why he got 0% of the black vote.

Question: Does Romney need to apologize? Will he?

Thursday, August 23, 2012

Is Hampton University's No-Cornrows Policy Oppressive Or Professional?!?

Any black person who has successfully navigated the world of Corporate America knows that assimilation is a necessary evil. Nobody likes having to suppress who they are to fit in, but it damn sure beats having an engineering degree and working the cash register at Chipotle. So to not scare off potential employees and advance once you're in the door, black people do a balancing act of speaking King's English, keeping ratchet behavior to a bare minimum, and never listening to 2Chainz in their cubes without headphones.

It's a somewhat large price to pay just to pay your bills, but it's not like black people are the only ones that have to assimilate. Pretty much everyone has to change a bit of who they are to fit in. It just so happens that standard Corporate Culture is furthest away from default Black Culture, so we have to change/adjust arguably more than anyone else. In my almost two decades of gettin' legal paper, I've damn near got the Corporate Negro steez down to a science.

With all that said, I'm a little uneasy about what's happening at The Other "HU".
Hampton University's business school dean is standing by a controversial ban on dreadlocks and cornrows for some students.

Male students enrolled in the school's 5-year MBA program who take the seminar class cannot wear dreadlocks or cornrows in class. The ban, which began in 2001, has been controversial over the years.

Business School Dean Sid Credle believes the ban has been effective in helping his students land corporate jobs.

"We've been very successful. We've placed more than 99 percent of the students who have graduated from this school, this program," said Credle

Credle said it's important for students to look the part when looking for a job.

"What we do is pay tribute to that image and say those are your role models. This is a way you will look when you become president," Credle added, "If you're going to play baseball, you wear baseball uniforms. If you're going to play tennis, your wear tennis uniform. Well you're playing that business."

Pat Woods owns a braiding salon called Just Braids in Newport News and says cornrows and dreadlocks can be a professional and natural look.

Dean Credle disagrees and says when people criticize the ban for denying cultural aspects of style, he believes cornrows and dreadlocks have not been a historically professional look.

"I said when was it that cornrows and dreadlocks were a part of African American history?" Credle added, "I mean Charles drew didn't wear, Muhammad Ali didn't wear it. martin Luther kind didn't wear it."
Credle is right: MLK, Ali, and Drew didn't wear locs. Of course, none of those guys ever worked for Pfizer either, but why let that ruin a perfectly good point.

I do understand the goal here: you want to graduate students who represent the University well, and whom recruiters find attractive. Without some level of guidance, left to their own devices some students may dress/talk/act in a way that doesn't give them the best shot at getting that job. I recall plenty of days when I showed up for an interview at my HBCU's Employment Services Office, only to find myself surrounded by fellow students wearing Girbaud Jeans, school athletic apparel, or fraternity sweatshirts.[1] The concept of getting a clean haircut, shaving, and wearing a suit is foreign to some 20-year olds. So on that account, I sorta applaud HU for insisting on standards.

That said, this might be taking it a wee bit too far. People (especially black women) choose hairstyles for lots of reasons that have little to do with aesthetics. Going natural/having locs is easier to maintain for some women, and for others, their hair is an extension of their religious/cultural beliefs. Forcing people to forgo individualism for the sake of getting a job seems a bit heavyhanded, even if it's coming from the right place. I should note, however, that this "policy" ain't exactly new. I have a colleague who graduated from Hampton in the mid-90's who says they had a "no straight hair, no job interviews" policy way back when. So maybe this is much noise about nothing.

What ya'll think?

Question: Is Hampton's "Cut Off Your Locs!" policy overbearing or is it in the students' best interest to present themselves in as professional and non-threatening a manner as possible? What's the real "HU"?!?

[1] It was the 90's, folks. And I'mma let you guess which frats/sororities were the most frequent foulers.

Romney Has Zero Perecent Of The Black Vote. Zero.

Remember a few months back when Mitt Romney hired a black woman to help shore up support in the African American community? Or that one very awkward appearance at a Philly public school? Or that paternalistic NAACP convention speech? It was all supposed to help Romney move the needle.

Yeah, it's not working so well.
After Mitt Romney selected his vice presidential running mate, and just days before the political conventions kick off next week, President Barack Obama maintains his advantage in the race for the White House, according to the latest NBC News/Wall Street Journal poll.

In a smaller sample of voters living in 12 key battleground states – Colorado, Florida, Iowa, Michigan, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Mexico, North Carolina, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Virginia and Wisconsin – Obama leads Romney by three points, 49 percent to 46 percent.

That’s a narrower edge in these battlegrounds than the eight-point lead the president enjoyed in the June and July NBC/WSJ polls.

Looking inside the numbers, Obama continues to lead Romney among key parts of his political base, including African Americans (94 percent to 0 percent), Latinos (by a 2-to-1 margin), voters under 35-years-old (52 percent to 41 percent) and women (51 percent to 41 percent).

Romney is ahead with whites (53 percent to 40 percent), rural voters (47 percent to 38 percent) and seniors (49 percent to 41 percent).
Even though then-Senator Obama took 98% of the black vote in 2008, it's hard for me to believe Romney didn't even pull in 1% in this poll. Which either means it's a statistical anomaly or black folks (not even Republicans) simply aren't down with #TeamRomney.[1]

What's your read on this?

Question: Is Romney really getting zero love from black voters or is this just a statistical blip?

[1] Of greater concern for Romney: He's getting trounced in the Latino, youth, and female vote as well. #PanderBetter

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

When Keepin' It Rape Goes Wrong...

Keep right on diggin' that hole, buddy.
Missouri Senate candidate Todd Akin has recorded a television ad asking for "forgiveness" from the voters of his state and acknowledging that he used "the wrong words in the wrong way" when he suggested last weekend that rape rarely leads to pregnancy.

The Republican congressman has come under heavy fire from national Republicans for his comments and has been urged by some to drop his candidacy before the no-penalty withdrawal deadline of 5 p.m. today. Akin has said he will move ahead with his bid against Democratic Sen. Claire McCaskill and the spot is an indication that he plans to follow through.

The commercial, which was shared with POLITICO, shows Akin speaking directly to the camera and explaining that he has compassion for the victims of rape.

The spot was produced by the Strategy Group for Media, which guided Akin to an upset victory in a multicandidate Republican primary. For Akin to move ahead, he'll have to apologize profusely (as in this ad) and move on from his problematic comments, return the focus of his campaign to McCaskill and her record in Congress, and win back support from the national Republicans who have condemned him when it becomes clear that he's going to remain the party's nominee for Senate. He'll have to run an insurgent race and bet either that the GOP establishment eventually comes back on board -- or that he won't need them in the general election any more than he needed them in the primary.

That's no small task, but at least the first poll released this week shows the Senate seat is not out of Akin's reach: he had 44 percent support in PPP's latest survey, versus 43 percent for McCaskill.
Here's the ad.[1]

One thing I find interesting is the number of Conservatives who've bend over backward asking Akin to step down, although his "no exceptions for rape or incest" stance (however poorly worded) is nothing new. Heck, it has more or less the default party stance for several decades. Which is why these calls to step down seem a wee bit too "convenient". Would there be such calls if Akin wasn't in a tight race to unseat the (laughably inept) incumbent? If he was 20 points behind, would this be equally insulting? Ionno.

I do think this guy (and his ilk) bring a level of discourse to the political debate that's unwelcome, outdated, and shamelessly paternalistic. I'd be glad to see him step down, but I don't see it happening.

Question: Should Akin just quit for the good of the party?

[1] Is that his wife, or his mother with him in that freeze frame at the beginning? I honestly can't tell, it's like a Barbara Bush sorta thing.

A $300 Pair Of Basketball Shoes? Bron Bron, Please?

I'm no sneakerhead, so I find this story patently absurd.
Is the basketball shoe world ready for a $300 shoe?

The market might get tested when the LeBron X is released later this year.

The Wall Street Journal is reporting that a Nike Plus-enabled version of the shoe -- that has motion sensors in the shoe to track various metrics including how high the player jumps -- will retail for $315. Although Matt Powell, an analyst for market retail tracking firm SportsOneSource, tells ESPN that he believes the price will be $290.

Despite a rough economic environment, Nike has been able to pass on the rising costs of materials to its consumers with little resistance due to the premium associated with its high-end product. Between the Nike, Jordan and Converse brands, Nike owns roughly 95 percent of the basketball shoe market in the United States.

While many will be fixated on the price, Powell said it's being blown out of proportion. He estimates that Nike will make only about 50,000 pairs of the Nike Plus-enabled LeBron X's compared to 200,000 to 300,000 pairs of the regular version of the shoe, which he expects to sell in the $175 range.
Part of me says $315 for a d*mn sneaker is pure lunacy. A $315 shoe cannot file your faxes for you. It cannot tutor your child in math. It cannot make mow your lawn. And it most certainly cannot improve your game (on-court), Like Mike-style. It is just a freakin' piece of overpriced leather.

That said, even in a recession, people still gotta ball. It's just human nature. And if your definition of ballin' means spending $315 for a shoe (which you'll probably never actually wear outside, just talk about/twitpic) that some poor sap in the far East manufactured for $17, so be it. I'm a Washington Wizards partial season ticket holder. We all got our vices.

Question: Is $315 for a pair of gym shoes just plain silly or do we all have our financial vices?!?

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Is Chavis Carter The Next Trayvon Martin?!?

As a guy who runs a black-themed website, I often get email pleas from readers to bring attention to certain stories. As a rule of thumb (see the AverageFAQ™) I don't typically cover stories about police shootings here. There are obvious notable exceptions (see: Martin, Trayvon) and this, by the sheer nature of it's dubious circumstances, would be one such example.
An Arkansas medical examiner has ruled that Chavis Carter, the 21-year-old man killed by a gunshot wound to the head while handcuffed in the back of a police car, committed suicide.

Toxicology findings show Carter tested positive for methamphetamine, anti-anxiety medication and other drugs.

According to the report by Deputy Chief Medical Examiner Stephen A. Erickson of the Arkansas State Crime Lab, the bullet that killed Carter entered his skull near his right temple, four inches from the top of his head.
"At the time of discharge, the muzzle of the gun was placed against the right temporal scalp," wrote Erickson.

He went on to state that, "The manner of death is based on both autopsy findings and the investigative conclusions of the Jonesboro Police Department."

The autopsy report released Monday included a drug analysis showing Carter hadn't been drinking the night of the July 28 shooting but his urine and blood indicated methamphetamine use. The report says Carter's blood also tested positive for at least trace amounts of the anti-anxiety medication diazepam and the painkiller oxycodone. His urine test also returned a positive result for marijuana.

Last week, Jonesboro police released video of a police officer approximately the same size as Carter reenacting what may have happened the back of the police car on the night of July 28, when Carter and two other men were pulled over in a traffic stop. Police searched Carter twice but have said they did not find a gun.

The reenactment video shows the officer being cuffed, then sitting in the back seat, retrieving a fake gun from his pants, and bringing the barrel to his right temple. The video also shows still photographs of other officers handcuffed in the backseat of a car, with the fake gun pressed to their temple.

Last Friday, police also released the dashboard video from the police car that pulled over the white pick-up truck Carter was riding in. The video shows Carter being patted down by an officer and then led off-camera and questioned. He was put under arrest when police received information that he had an outstanding drug warrant in Mississippi.

Carter's family and others have questioned the police story, claiming that Carter was not suicidal and questioning whether it would have been physically possible to retrieve a concealed weapon and shoot himself in the head while handcuffed and seated.
It's honestly difficult to draw any conclusion here. It almost seems physically impossible that Carter could have somehow managed to shoot himself in the temple while handcuffed. His mother noted that while Carter was shot in the right temple, he is actually lefthanded. He was also frisked twice by police before being placed in the vehicle, which only makes their story (and curious re-enactment video) that much more dubious.[1]

On the other hand, part of me wants to resist wading into this story because it seems like yet another example of a (mounting) groundswell of black blogosphere outrage over a black man with a criminal record finding his demise at the (alleged) hands of evil white cops. There will be cyber petitions, and probably a march or two, and it's all after the fact, which essentially means it's a textbook example of Driveby Activism. Our collective power seems squandered if it's always used on addressing some (alleged) evil at the hands of police. That power would be so much better utilized on proactive measures like the AverageBro Challenge™, a notion I've blabbered about for so long that even I'm beginning to doubt it's effectiveness.

Are the two mutually exclusive? Of course not.

But it damn sure feels like one gets a lot more hits than the other.

I wish the best for Carter's family. They deserve a much better answer than they've gotten thus far.

Question: What do you think really happened here? Does the black blogosphere squander its collective power by only getting outraged about (supposedly racist) police shootings, at the expense of more proactive, positive activism?!?

[1] The police re-enactment video and the cataloguing of Carter's drug usage have a certain Chappellian "sprinkle some crack on him" element that's hard to overlook.

Monday, August 20, 2012 Open Mic Monday.

Just getting back in town, so I'll be brief today. Here's the rundown.

Missouri GOP Senate Contender's "Legitimate Rape" Gaffe (Say Bye Bye To That Potential Seat)

GOP Freshmen Skinnydipped On Official Trip To Israel (Such Classy Guys)

DNC Speakers List Revealed (Not Very Diverse)

Rick Santorum says Biden played the ‘race card’ (Ricka Please)

Paul Ryan Was For Stimulus Before We Was Against It (Because Obama's A Democrat)[1]

Question: What's on your mind today?

[1] Pretty amazing that this guy looked the exact same 10 years ago.

The Green Light Of Life.

Last week, I whined about my PlayStation 3's untimely demise, courtesy of the dreaded yellow light of death. Thanks to the kindness and generosity of AverageNation™ regular ElDubble, my unit's been repaired and this weekend Daddy was able to catch up on some Daddy Time™.

ElDubb's company is GiantGSM. If you ever need an electronic device repaired, I'd encourage you to give them a look.

Thanks, El.

Harriett Tubman Should Have Left You Negroes Enslaved.

Warning: adult language and extreme ratchetness ahead.

This should be the new theme song for Maury's "You Are The Father!" segments.

Thursday, August 16, 2012

Jay-Z Only Owns 0.0666% Of The Brooklyn Nets.

I know a damn Grand Hu$tle when I see one, and when Jay-Z just so happened to be named an "owner" of the New Jersey Nets a few years back, my Negro Antennae went up. Not because I doubted the JiggaMan's business acumen, but because the timing of the announcement and the team's plans to seize the property of poor folks to build an arena in Brooklyn just seemed waaay to coincidental.

We've all seen the blueprint (no pun intended) before. Put a smiley, familiar face on the front of a ruthless corporation to make a not-so-popular decision a bit more palatable. Jay-Z was this face, a Brooklyn Boy done good. People would maybe feel a bit better about being homeless if one of their own was somehow profiting as a result. The Atlantic Yards project faced years of legal wrangling, but the arena is finally complete and the Nets will play their first games there in a few weeks. I'll certainly strategically plan a customer visit to NYC sometime this Winter to check the place out myself.

Good times. Unless, of course, you were displaced. Not so good times.

Anyways, given how much he brags about "owning the team" in nearly every one of his raps, I've always wondered just how much "ownership" Hov actually has. Turns out, he owns about as much of the Nets as I own Sirius XM radio.[1]

Which is to say, not very much.
When the developer Bruce Ratner set out to buy the New Jersey Nets and build an arena for them in Brooklyn, he recruited Jay-Z, the hip-hop superstar who grew up in public housing a couple of miles from the site, to join his group of investors.

Mr. Ratner may have thought he was getting little more than a limited partner with a boldface name and a youthful following that could prove useful someday. But Jay-Z’s contributions have dwarfed the $1 million he invested nine years ago. His influence on the project has been wildly disproportionate to his ownership stake — a scant one-fifteenth of one percent of the team. And so is the money he stands to make from it.

Now, with the long-delayed Barclays Center arena nearing opening night in September and the Nets bidding in earnest for Brooklyn’s loyalties, Jay-Z will perform eight sold-out shows to kick things off. But away from center stage he has put his mark on almost every facet of the enterprise, his partners say.

He helped design the team logos and choose the team’s stark black-and-white color scheme, and personally appealed to National Basketball Association officials to drop their objections to it (the N.B.A., according to a person with knowledge of the discussion, thought that African-American athletes did not look good on TV in black, an assertion that a league spokesman adamantly denied).

All told, he has achieved a remarkable feat of leverage with his tiny sliver of the team, which was reduced from one-third to one-fifteenth of a percent upon Mr. Prokhorov’s purchase of the Nets, according to people aware of the deal terms. (Mr. Carter, who declined to be interviewed for this article, retains a slightly larger sliver of the arena itself — just under a fifth of a percent.)
So, 1/15th of one percent. Not 1/15. 1/15 of one percent.


[Editor's Sidenote: The line about the black uniforms/black players is kinda odd, considering the fact that, oh, maybe 5-6 NBA teams either wear black road or alternate unis already, but anyways. Given the fact that the NBA has unequivocally the best diversity record of any pro sports league period, that's just... a very strange thing to say.]

If there's anything that really annoys me about Jay-Z claiming to "own" the Nets, it's the assumption that he's somehow done something historic, as if making a career as an entertainer is the only way to achieve such a thing. That couldn't be further from the truth. In fact, the first black men to own a pro team did it the old fashioned way: by borrowing other people's money. If you don't know anything about Peter Bynoe and Bertram Lee, please educate yourself before you listen to "N*ggas In Paris" again. You should also read that before you write the words "hater" in the comment box. Save us all the trouble.

That said, the article is a must read for anyone curious about the business of pro sports. While Jay doesn't own a significant part of the team and seems to be more of a celebrity endorser than a power player, his ability to leverage his fame and illusion of ownership to further his non-basketball business ventures is well chronicled here. Good for him.

I do, however, wish he'd kill that "own the team nonsense".

Question: Is Jay-Z's "ownership" just a Grand Hu$tle, or a smart business move?

[1] BTW, this stock is up an astounding 41% since July. You might wanna cop some.

Hot Cheetos & Takis.

It's the latest hipster-ironic viral sensation. Get familiar.

Meanwhile in China, a similarly aged set of kids just mastered Boolean algebra.


Wednesday, August 15, 2012 Open Mic Wednesday.

I'm busy today, so entertain yourselves. Drop links, write your own posts. You know the drill by now. Lots to talk about though...

Joe Biden's Stoopid "2Chainz" Comment

Mitt Romney's Incessant Whining/Victimhood

Obama's Somewhat Tasteless Jab At Romney's Dog

Paul Ryan Stumbles Badly, Gets Exposed As Fraud In Fox News Interview

Romney Tells Obama To Go The F*ck Back To Africa Take His "Hate Back To Chicago"

Question: What's on your mind today?

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

WorkPlace 101: Can You Get Fired For A Facebook Like?!?

We've covered Social Media faux pas in the past here, but this case is making national news, so why not revisit the debate?
A Virginia sheriff's deputy has been fired for liking his boss's political opponent -- on Facebook.

Now Daniel Ray Carter Jr. is fighting back in court, arguing that a "like" should be protected by his First Amendment right to free speech. It's a case that could settle a significant question at a time when hundreds of millions of people express themselves on Facebook, sometimes merging their personal, professional and political lives in the process.

According to court documents, the case began when Sheriff B.J. Roberts of Hampton, Virginia, fired Carter and five other employees for supporting his rival in a 2009 election.

Carter's offense? Clicking the omnipresent Facebook thumbs-up to follow the page "Jim Adams For Hampton Sheriff." Roberts, of course, won re-election, leading to the firings.

Free-speech advocates argue that the "like" should have been clearly protected by Carter's right to freedom of expression. But a U.S. District Court judge in Virginia ruled differently saying, in effect, that free-speech protections don't kick in when someone doesn't actually say something.

Barry believes if the appeals court upholds that judgment, it could make it much easier for employers to clamp down on their workers' speech on social networks such as Facebook and Twitter as well as on personal blogs and other sites.
Sorry, but this has nothing to do with protected free speech. Period. This is all about common freakin' sense. Namely, you don't support your boss' opponent when your boss is up for re-election. And if you are, you do so privately. You certainly don't leave a cyber-trail online? That's just silly.

Most workplaces have social media policies. My job's policy pretty much says "do whatever you want online, just keep our names out your mouth." It's really that simple. And this guy would still have his job had he not broken the most sacred of workplace rules.

Don't bite the hand that feeds you.

Question: Should Facebook likes or Retweets be protected free speech? Did this guy deserve to get canned? Do you think about how your online activities could effect your employment?

The Second Most Important Rap Song Of This Decade (So Far).

I'm not the biggest Lupe Fiasco fan for more reasons than I have space to mention here, but I'm gonna give him lots of credit for this. Much like Nas' "Daughters", "Bitch Bad" examines the effect of hip-hop culture (in this case, a single, oft [mis]used word) on the psyche of young girls. Extra points for giving this song an intentionally provocative title.

If I made rap songs (which I won't) this is prolly the sorta song I'd make. It's not enough to make me buy F&LII, but props given.

Question: What do you think of this song?

Monday, August 13, 2012

Mitt Romney Picks Grown-Up Child Star Eddie Munster As Running Mate. Yaawwwwn.

So by now, you all know that Mitt Romney has chosen Wisconsin Congressman and former child star Paul Ryan as his VP. The world hasn't seen such an uninspired pairing since Cop Out. At least that movie had the sometimes-funny Tracy Morgan. Romney/Ryan just has two guys who both grew up in affluent families trying to pass themselves off as everymen Washington outsiders. Which, again, is about as convincing as pairing an aging action star with a black guy who barely speaks function English.

You can prolly tell what movie I saw (again) this weekend, right?

Anyways, in coming days we'll undoubtedly see the Democrats paint Ryan as a radical who wants to dismantle every social safety net and make it easier for the rich to stay richer. Republicans will paint him as a brilliant policy wonk here to save us from ourselves. Reality is, like most running mates, not a single person will cast their vote in November because of (or in spite of) Ryan or the increasingly embarassing Joe Biden. These guys are called running mates for a reason.

That said, here's a handful of my random thoughts on the selection.
Tea Party Hypocrisy - Did you know Ryan has been a Washington insider his entire career? It's true. He was a Congressional intern, turned Congressional staffer, turned Congressman. For a bunch of people who put such a premium on hating the government, they're awful silent about this guy, who is as much a creature of DC as one can possibly be. He even met his wife here. And surprise, she comes from an affluent family with a boatload of political connections as well. Ryan also owes a huge part of his success to government instutions like state supported colleges, and oh yeah, the Feds. But hey, that whole "Government Sucks!" thing apparently only applies to Obama. Who, might I add, has more private sector experience than Ryan. But anyways.

Romney Hypocrisy - Anyone remember a few months ago when Mittens said that he wanted to amend the Constitution to require anyone running for the Presidency to have a minimum of 3 years of business experience? He also said that anyone he chooses as a VP needs to be ready to be President should something happen to him. Uhhh, yeah, so much for that.

Ryan Really Hasn't Accomplished Much - Policy ideas aside, Ryan's actual legislative record is about as prolific as my podcast. 13 years in DC. Two bills passed. One renamed a post office. The other changed the tax rate on bow & arrow equipment. No, seriously. As for his reputation as a deficit hawk, Ryan voted for the Bush tax cuts, two wars, TARP, and the Bush prescription drug program. And no, none of this stuff was paid for with offsetting cuts.

Ryan Is, However, Right. Sorta. - Folks, at some point, entitlements like Medicare, Medicaid, and Social Security will all need to be addressed. The problem is, privatizing these programs or giving Seniors vouchers to find their own coverage is just to reckless and wanton a solution. I give credit to Ryan to at least suggesting some changes as a Congressman. As a VP however, he's already backpedalling from his own plan, taking the Social Security plan off the table. Reality is, such a massive change needs to happen with bipartisan effort. Anyone with half a brain knows that in this current political environment, nothing of the sort will ever happen.

This Doesn't Move The Needle Much - Again, people don't cast Vice Presidential votes. The Romney ticket, if history is a guide, will likely only get a momentary 1-2% poll bounce. Barring something cataclysmic happening, this race is still going to come down to one thing: job growth. Last month's 165k number was great. If we see anything near 200k for the August and Sept, this election is effectively over. Nothing Romney/Ryan can do about that.
Question: What do you think about the Ryan selection?

Chad Johnson And The Reality TV Curse.

Well, well, well...
Longtime NFL wide receiver Chad Johnson has been released by the Miami Dolphins after his arrest over the weekend. Johnson is accused of head-butting his newlywed wife, authorities said.

The Dolphins announced Sunday on their website that they had terminated the contract of Johnson, who played a preseason game on Friday but had not participated in a regular season game with the team. No reason was given for his release.

Johnson and Evelyn Lozada, a cast member on the VH1 reality TV show "Basketball Wives," married on July 4 and their time together is set to be subject of an upcoming show on the same network.

According to the arrest report from the Davie Police Department released Sunday, the football player's wife returned to the couple's home in that southern Florida city from grocery shopping shortly after 7 p.m. Saturday and noticed a receipt with a charge for a box of condoms.

The couple then began talking about the sales receipt and their marriage, according to the arrest report.

"As they were talking, Johnson became upset and without (his wife's) permission, grabbed her and butted her on the forehead, causing a laceration," the police report said, giving the alleged victim's account.

A Davie police officer soon responded to the area and found Johnson's wife with an approximately 3-inch cut on the center of her forehead.

Officer Christopher Epps then went to the couple's home, where he found the football player, the arrest report said. Johnson confirmed there had been an argument over the sales receipt, saying his wife had been yelling and that "she then head butted Johnson" to cause the cut to her forehead.

Johnson did not have "visible marks or bruises," the arrest report said.
I'm not trying to make light of domestic violence here, but admit it: when you heard he headbutted her, I'm sure your initial thought was "Man, that's one big assed forehead! How many times did he have to headbutt her?"

Nobody deserves to be beaten, and much like other celebrity wife(or GF)-beaters, I hope Johnson gets the public scorn his actions merit. Losing his day job is prolly a good start, although as long as Johnson can run an out pattern, someone will be more than willing to pick him up.[1] Believe that.

BTW, I don't watch Hard Knocks, but how's this for foreshadowing?!?

That said, I hope their already reviled reality show doesn't try and seize this very real life situation and use it as a plot device. Seriously, that would be tacky. I'm no fan of either of the principals in this story, and I generally find them to be very nauseating, arrogant people whom I strongly dislike, but who oddly seem to deserve each other. And oddly, one of the few things I recall from having (briefly) watched them on Basketball Wives is "They're getting married and they really don't seem to even like each other. At all."

Lets just hope they don't both use this situation as a come up.

Best of luck, Ocho. Don't be so mad. UPS is hirin'.

Question: Should Johnson get another shot at the NFL after this? Do these two very bad people actually deserve each other?

[1] As of right now though, he is, to borrow the phrase, a non-m************ factor.

Friday, August 10, 2012

Three Really Tasteless Democratic Campaign Ads.

The combination of close polls and unlimited SuperPac dollars pretty much guaranteed we'd see some extra shady campaign ads this year, which is cool because I really like campaign ads. In recent weeks, but sides of the political aisle have ratcheted up the ratcheness. In the interest of fair time (and because I'm lazy today), here's a trio of particularly reviling Democratic attack ads. Cause I'm just fair and balanced like that.

I'm sure some of you are gonna accuse me of false equivalence pandering to the handful of Conservative readers of this site. That's not the case. At all. I just call em' like I see em', and these three ads stood out for their tastelessness. I'd say the same thing if these were ads Republicans were running against Democrats. You know, like I do all the time here. #FairAndBalancedAndWhatnot

Here's the ads.

1) #TeamObama is under attack for an ad that depicts a man who sorta insinuates that Mitt Romney is responsible for his wife's death after he lost his job due to a Bain Capital decision. No need to BS you, this ad is pure trash. The White House's decision to "play it coy" about this one just smacks of the worst kind of election year baloney.

2)'s newest ad features an ominous white hand reaching for people's pockets. Beyond being downright corny, it's just too comical to even be taken seriously.

3) I don't like Allen West. Actually, I strongly dislike Allen West. But this ad is just tacky. I also can't help put notice that all the women getting punched were white. Beyond that little nugget is the obvious question: what the hell does Allen West have to do with boxing?

Question: What do yo think about these ads?!?

Thursday, August 9, 2012

The Yellow Light Of Death.

As a guy with a house full of chill'ren and a Day Job, one of the last things I actually get to enjoy for myself is PlayStation. I only play one game (NBA2K12) and only 2-3 times a week tops, but I consider this DaddyTime. It's sacred. And it only happens once the entire family is asleep. With babygirl's nighttime routine constantly evolving, I am finding less and less time to toy around with the awesome post-draft, post-free agency downloadable rosters.

Last night, I finally got the baby down around 12:30 (my wife was already out of it) and relieved, go to turn on the PS3 for a quick game before I conked out myself[1].

I press the power button, and this happens...

Damn, Damn, Daammmmmmnnnnnnnnn (James)!!!!!!

BTW, no, that isn't me in the video above, if you couldn't tell already. But yeah, my PS3 is toast. Until I sell some more sidebar ads, I'mma have to take up another nighttime hobby. Like reading a book. Or folding baby clothes. Or just sleeping. Arrghhh.

There's no real reason for this post other than the grovel in my painful loss, and because my man GregT2U2 said so. But mostly the latter.

Now if you'll excuse me, I'm going somewhere to go cry in my cereal.

Question: Have you ever had your favorite gadget die at an inopportune time? Tell me bout' it?

[1] Get it how you live.

Mama, I'm In The Paper. (Again)

While the Washington Post usually grabs a quote here and there from this blog for their Express Newspaper, I'm actually pretty honored to say I was interviewed for a story that runs in today's print edition.

No, it has nothing to do with my blogging, but rather a Tweet I made after watching an amazing play during a baseball game the other night. Post writer Dan Steinberg, one of my favorite bloggers BTW, reached out to me for further comment. The rest, as they say, is fit for print. Or something like that.

My quotes aside, it's a pretty good article, BTW. Go have a look.

Washington Nationals fans begin to ask: Could this be our year? [WashPost]

Dear President Obama: "Show Us The Transcripts!!!"

Just to throw this out there: I didn't particularly care for Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid's unsubstantiated accusation that Mitt Romney hasn't paid any taxes for the past 10 years. It was based totally on something an "unnamed source" allegedly told him. It is utterly pointless in the grand scheme of things, because if Romney hadn't paid any taxes (which is unlikely) he probably just used every legal loophole at his disposal, thus doing nothing illegal. And finally, this tactic stunk because people considered Reid an Obama surrogate, which he really isn't. It was a silly season moment that obscured a larger point: the tax "overhaul" Romney's advocating will benefit people like him most, while shifting an unfair amount of the burden on working stiffs like, oh, 95% of all Americans.

Now that's what Harry Reid shoulda said. Instead, we got a pointless debate about Romney's taxes which he'll never release, but which probably wouldn't have confirmed anything other than the fact that he's very rich and has great accountants.

Anyways, turnabout being fairplay and whatnot, wingnuts are renewing their own "show me your papers" conspiracy from 2008. No, they aren't demanding to see a birth certificate (okay, they still are), they wanna see President Obama's transcripts.

Root seems to be deploying the time-tested "I didn't know him, nor did I know anyone who knew him" line of reasoning that worked so swimmingly for Donald Trump.[1] Hannity, of course, is no innocent bystander here, feigning mild disgust when the interview takes a weird turn into birtherland. I haven't seen two more disgusting individuals on TV since I last watched Love And Hip Hop Atlanta.

Buckle your seatbelts. Welcome to Silly Season, folks.

Question: Should Romney release the 10 years of tax records? Who's more consistently reviling? Stevie J or Sean Hannity?!?

[1] BTW, what exactly did Trump's "investigators" find in Hawaii, other than Diamond Head Crater and some awesome pina coladas?!?

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

What, Exactly, Is Mitt Romney's "Economic Platform"?!?

Obscured by his tax return controversy, international bumblings, and general awkwardness is Mitt Romney's lack of specifics on how he's going to fix our economy. An economy that, BTW, might actually be headed back in the right direction if last week's jobs report becomes a trend. Romney, of course, seems to be betting his entire campaign on his success as a businessman. Of course, running a venture capital firm is about as akin to running a country as being an And-One streetballer is to becoming an Olympic gymnast. That is to say, not very much.

Romney could, of course, simply run on his success as Massachusetts Governor. But his single term was so successful he opted not to run for re-election because his awful approval rating indicated he had no chance of winning. He could also choose his stewardship of the Winter Olympics, but hell, we're clearly just splitting hairs at this point.

The Washington Post's Ezra Klein recently explored Romney's lack of campaign specifics.
Romney’s offerings are more like simulacra of policy proposals. They look, from far away, like policy proposals. They exist on his Web site, under the heading of “Issues,” with subheads like “Tax” and “Health care.” But read closely, they are not policy proposals. They do not include the details necessary to judge Romney’s policy ideas. In many cases, they don’t contain any details at all.

Take taxes. Romney has promised a “permanent, across-the-board 20 percent cut in marginal rates,” alongside a grab bag of other goodies, like the end of “the death tax.” Glenn Hubbard, his top economic adviser, has promised that the plan will “broaden the tax base to ensure that tax reform is revenue-neutral.”

It is in the distance between “cut in marginal rates” and “revenue-neutral” that all the policy happens. That is where Romney must choose which deductions to cap or close. It’s where we learn what his plan means for the mortgage-interest deduction, and the tax-free status of employer health plans and the Child Tax Credit. It is where we learn, in other words, what his plan means for people like you and me. And it is empty. Romney does not name even one deduction that he would cap or close. He even admitted, in an interview with CNBC, that his plan “can’t be scored because those details have to be worked out.”

Romney’s plan spans 369 words. He would “promote alternatives to ‘fee for service.’” Which alternatives? It’s a mystery. He would “end tax discrimination against the individual purchase of insurance.” That can mean any of a couple of huge policy changes. It could mean, for the first time ever, that employer-provided health plans are taxed — a massive tax increase. It could mean that all spending on health insurance is made tax free — a giant, and expensive, tax cut. Which is it? Romney doesn’t say.

On financial regulation, Romney would “repeal Dodd-Frank and replace with streamlined, modern regulatory framework.” That is literally his entire plan. Three years after a homegrown financial crisis wrecked the global economy, the likely Republican nominee for president would repeal the new regulatory architecture and replace it with … something.

On deficit reduction, Romney’s plan “requires spending cuts of approximately $500 billion per year in 2016.” He has not released spending cuts that come anywhere close to that goal. He does have some nice words to say about the Ryan budget, but Romney advisers have told the media that their candidate disagrees with large parts of it, including the Medicare cuts.
In some ways, I totally understand this approach. Providing specifics gives your opponent more things to pick apart and compare/contrast. Being purposely vague avoids such pitfalls, and allows you to keep your focus entirely on attacking your opponent's specifics, something the Romney campaign's been quite good at, even when they haven't been totally telling the truth. Still, with debate season on the way, Romney's gonna have to say something sooner or later, or he's gonna run the risk of being shown up on a national stage.

When pressed for details, Romney provides little more than tax cuts and rolling back regulations, apparently unaware that we're in massive debt and a lack of regulations was the primary reason for the economic cliff we drove off of. In a perfect world, instead of parroting the now pointless "eliminate Bush tax cuts for the rich" line that's clearly getting his campaign nowhere, President Obama would mention all the above.

But whatever mojo his campaign had in 08' is obviously gone.

Question: Do the lack of specifics in Romney's "economic plan" concern you? Is this a smart campaign strategy? Other than Ron Paul, would any of the various GOP 2012 candidates have played this card any differently?!?

I Believe The Children Are Our Future. Just Not These Kids.

Uhh, seriously folks. Parent Up!

Monday, August 6, 2012 Hot Topics - 8.6.12

Here's the daily rundown.
Sikh Shooting In Wisconsin. Shooter Identified. - Shooter identified as white supremacist. Such a lazy, catch-all label that allows us as a country to subconsciously write this off, instead of taking a good hard, long look at what causes people to do such demented things in the first place. There will be no "national conversation" about semi-automatic gun control, terrorism, or anti-Islamic sentiment (yes, I know, Sikhs are not Muslims). Nope, this is just the lone action of one wacko who hated brown people. Hey, when's Usain Bolt racing next?!?

Sadly, this is just par for the course. You could argue that the media's gonna pay less attention to this because of the white supremacist/brown people angle, and while there's some truth to that, reality is we as a country really don't care to ask the tough questions when this happens. Has there been any substantive discussion about semi-automatic gun control since the Aurora shooting? Hell, has there been any coverage of the Aurora shooting since the Olympics began? Answer that one yourself...

Mars Landing - True story: I had a job offer from JPL my final semester in college. They flew me to Pasadena, wined and dined me, then presented me with an offer so low I would have had to commute in from Mexico. They even brought out two token black employees to explain to me how living in Compton was very affordable and not nearly as bad as it might sound in those NWA songs. My mind was already made up by then, I was staying my a$$ on the East Coast. I mean, seriously, with the cost of living in SoCal, you'd think NASA would pay more. They don't. Or at least didn't. Which prolly explained the relative lack of black faces in the control room when Curiosity touched down on Mars this morning at 1:30am (yes, I was up). Or maybe it doesn't explain anything. I just wanted to tell that story. Yes, I, could have been a rocket scientist. Chew on that one.

The Olympics - Since we're already sorta on the topic, pick your angle. Gabby Douglas' $90M in endorsement deals. Usain Bolt's excellence. Phelps goes out on top. Team USA's scare vs Lithuania. All them fast track chicks. Go for it. The story I found most interesting personally was...

Serena Williams' C-Walk After Winning Gold- More cultural anthropology, with a bunch of wingnuts claiming Serena was "celebrating gang culture" when she briefly crip-walked after disemboweling Maria Sharapova. Bull. It's just a freakin' dance. Nobody complains when she curtsies. Knock it off. And props to Serena for keepin' it hood'. Eff' a hater.

NFL Preseason Football Kicked Off Last Night - Did you watch? Nope, me neither. I will, however, tune in later this week as RGIII makes his Redskins debut Thursday at Buffalo.

Condi Rice To Speak At RNC - Let the loony VP speculation begin.
Question: What do you think about these issues?

Thursday, August 2, 2012 Open Mic Friday.

I'm busy today, so entertain yourselves. Drop links, write your own posts. You know the drill by now.

Question: What's on your mind today?