Thursday, September 10, 2015

An Open Letter To Everyone Who's (Still/Inexplicably) Supporting Donald Trump For President.

Dear Conservatives,

Let's have a quick talk. Seriously guys, what's it gonna take for you all to stop supporting this guy? He has insulted Mexicans. He's insulted "the Blacks". He has insulted women. He has insulted people of faith. He has insulted war veterans. Let me repeat that... HE HAS INSULTED WAR VETERANS!!!! Yet his poll numbers keep rising. I keep expecting the balloon to finally burst, but it hasn't and there's no indication it will. I mean, it's not like Trump hasn't already had his fair share of controversies, most of which were unforced errors. Yet he's come through each one unscathed. Herman Cain he is not.[1]

Do you realize how ridiculous it would be to support a person primarily known as a reality TV star in the first place, let alone supporting a reality TV star whose sole asset appears to be insulting people who disagree with him in the most uncouth and despicable manner possible? What's his "platform"? Do you even know? Do you even care? It doesn't seem like it.

You do realize the rest of the world is looking at you guys and laughing their asses off, right? I get it, you really, really hate Obama. Well guess what... he's not on the the ballot in 2016. If you're trying to stick it to the 51% of America that elected this guy twice, you could probably choose a better weapon[2], especially given how vulnerable (check that... incompetent) the Democratic frontrunner is. You could actually win this thing, get your party back in power, and actually "take back your country", whatever the fuck that means.

Trump's entire appeal seems to be directly related to his jackassery. Maybe he should make that part of his campaign slogan. Forget "Make America Great Again". That's corny. "Make History: Elect The First Jackass President" would be awesome. And accurate. Very accurate. I might just buy that bumper sticker. And burn it. Because I'm not a jackass.

In the unlikely event that he does overcome the left's challenger and wins, do you actually want this guy residing at 1600 Penn Ave? Really? Seriously? Have you even thought through exactly what that would look like? Do you even care?

Start caring soon, please.

Thank you,

AB

[1] I miss Herman Cain.

[2] Jeb Bush and John Kasich to name two. Okay, that might be the only two. I woulda put Chris Christie on this list a few months back, but Trump's basically jacked his entire "tell it like it is" steez and dialed it up about 1000000 notches. Big C.R.I.S's run for the nomination ended quicker than a Ronda Rousey fight.

Friday, August 28, 2015

The Problem With Black Lives Matter...

[Editor's Note: So yeah, this post is gonna surely piss off a lot of people. I don't care.]

For months, I've watched the whole Black Lives Matter movement grow and expand. The whole thing seemed to originate around the same time as the Ferguson protests, and has always sorta rubbed me the wrong way with its one-message mission of preventing police from killing innocent people. While the marches themselves have been impressive for their sheer size and frequency, there still doesn't seem to be a coherent message or a well stated agenda to all of this. What's the endgame? Is there one? Beyond millenial catchphrases like "microaggressions" and "transformative justice", it's hard to say. When confronted, self-proclaimed "leaders" of the movement can't even clearly articulate what they actually want.

"But hey, we've got new cameras following us, so let's do something just for the sake of attention, why don't we?"

This has lead to the movement hijacking presidential campaign speeches with no purpose other than hijacking them, and demanding time of other candidates, then doing jack sh*t when given the requested time other than posing a few awkward questions and subsequently leaking unauthorized video of said meeting online.

In between, we've seen countless protests in the wake of police-involved shootings even when said shootings were somewhat justified. Other times, we've seen protesters demand action in the wake of other incidents, when the full scope of said incidents wasn't even known yet. In short, any time where's an incident where the victim is black and the perpetrator is non-black, BLM swarms like a hive of misinformed bees, quickly jumping to the defense of the victim, details be damned. And other times, BLM simply shows up and raises a ruckus when some action involving cops is merely being proposed, regardless of why.

This odd tendency was typified in the most obnoxious of manners yesterday, as BLM activists showed up at press conference being held by DC Mayor Muriel Bowser. For those unaware, DC homicides are in the midst of a startling uptick, especially in mostly black Ward 8 where the murder rate is up 95% since last year. Earlier this week, a bunch of ignorant MFers literally jacked a Metro bus, which lead to Metro temporarily suspending bus routes out of fear of more violence against drivers (someone also shot at a bus recently). With routes disrupted, people are having to walk as much as 30 minutes to catch an alternate bus, through these very same crime ridden areas. So yeah, that's not good thing, if you're merely a law abiding citizen who wants to get to work, like my in-laws, who live adjacent to this section of the city.

Common sense would dictate that shifting a few cops over to the effected area would be a good idea, and that's what Mayor Bowser was holding a press conference to announce (among other immediate common sense actions to get crime under control). But to the BLM "activists", this was merely another example of "police oppression", and they essentially showed their asses, disrupting a very important press conference for no good reason.
Chanting “police are not the answer,” dozens of protesters from the Black Lives Matter movement on Thursday prevented the mayor of Washington, D.C. from completing her announcement of a new police program plan to curb a sharply rising murder rate in the nation’s capital, local news reports said.

The chants disrupted Mayor Muriel Bowser’s speech and the first-term Democratic mayor, who is black, left the stage as the crowd both jeered and cheered, according to The Washington Post. Bowser, who was elected in 2013, spoke to reporters after she left the stage.

The new program would put hundreds more officers on the streets and ease restrictions on searching homes of some offenders, along with other changes. Instead of an increase in police powers, activists say they want to combat violent crime with an approach that involves members of the communities afflicted by the killings.

She was trying to announce her plan in Ward 8, a largely African-American area in the city’s southeast quadrant. Neighboring Ward 7 has experienced a 95 percent increase in murders this year. Citywide, there have been 103 killings so far in 2015, compared to 72 at this point last year, according to the Metropolitan Police Department.

Bowser’s plan includes adding about 200 more police officers to the streets, the Post reported, and easing restrictions on searches of the homes of violent offenders. Some officers will be shifted from administrative duties to the streets.

The new measures let police detain for 72 hours violent offenders who violate restraining orders. Another part of the plan allows police to search for guns in the homes of violent offenders on parole, as the mayor’s office and the Metropolitan Police Department say that parolees are mostly responsible for the rise in murders.

Eugene Puryear, an activist and Green Party politician who represents the BLM-affiliated group Stop Police Terror D.C., said the mayor’s approach was deeply flawed and would result in more police oppression in African-American communities.

“More cops with more weapons and tougher laws and expanding police powers — that got us the era of mass incarceration, but it didn’t stop crime,” Puryear told Al Jazeera. “Instead of a police surge, there needs to be a community surge.”

He said that successful ways of reducing police violence require the participation of community members who have returned from jail, or who have “walked in the shoes” of young people at risk of committing or falling victim to violent crime. Bowser’s bill would put such people under stricter scrutiny by law enforcement.

Bowser’s plan does include the opening of a new community center to help residents get access to social services. Puryear, however, said this represents a mere nod to community involvement, and doesn’t make it a centerpiece of the program.
With all due respect to BLM, building more community centers has jack sh*t to do with people shooting at city buses. But once again, their one argument fits all approach to activism undermines immediate, concrete plans that the mayor is taking to curb a very serious issue that's literally killing people. Sometimes, cops can actually be effective, ya' know. This would be one such time.

I don't have an issue with BLM in theory. Social justice has always been an impetus of civil rights protesting, and on that note, BLM is serving a much needed purpose. Police and other government entities do indeed prey on those in minority communities, often with devastating ramifications. Those things need to be pointed out, and BLM has been consistent, loud, and diligent in doing so. I do believe that these actions will lead to smarter policing, better public policy, and if nothing else, awareness and empathy from the rest of the American public that's willing to see things with open eyes. On that note, I applaud them heartily.

That said, if they want to be taken seriously (which should not be confused with "getting on the news consistently") they're gonna need to expand their scope a bit. I'd love to see BLM put the same amount of energy, effort, and attention into things that are more proactive in nature like mentoring, tutoring, coaching, cleaning up communities, giving financial awareness seminars, classes on parenting, etc. You know, things that actually improve the communities they say they want to protect from the inside out. Reality is, cops could stop shooting unarmed citizens tomorrow, and those communities would still be pockmarked with the very same dysfunction that BLM's trying to eradicate from the outside-in. Why not harness that energy and put it towards efforts that can simultaneously fix both sides of the problem?

Like it or not, black on black crime is a real thing, and it does need to be addressed. There are scores of organizations that work, often with little funding and worse, few volunteers, to address all of the issues I just spoke of. From teen pregnancy, to adult literacy, to financial awareness, to the achievement gap, to urban crime, to bad role models, to absentee fathers. Addressing the cops only is treating one of the symptoms, not the actual illness itself. I'd love to see those protesters mobilize an sign up in large numbers to help the organizations that do such things.

Imagine all of these BLM protesters volunteering to provide consistent, ongoing Sylan Learning Center style math and early reading tutoring at an inner city school. Or BLM protesters committing to be a Big Brother/Big Sister and mentor at-risk tweens. Or putting their collective education and savvy together to teach courses at a local community center on how to balance a budget, invest in the stock market, or plan for retirement. If all of that stuff sounds pie-in-the-sky, it shouldn't. I, as a 20 something single participated in all of those activities as a volunteer at some point. It's not impossible, because such programs already exist, but simply need more hands on deck to be really effective. Throw a few dozen protesters into each of these programs for a year, and you're gonna begin to see substantial inside-out changes in these communities.

Of course, the TV cameras probably wouldn't come along for the ride, and there'd be actual time and effort and sacrifice and delayed gratification involved, sooo...

Movements die when there's no clearly articulated goal or agenda. We saw this with Occupy Wall Street, whose net net was just a bunch of trampled urban parks and more attention for Elizabeth Warren, but little else. Ditto for the Tea Party, which managed to slow down President Obama's agenda, but has done little else beyond get a bunch of phony politicians who have since fallen in lockstep with the GOP establishment. Both of those movements were better funded and both were taken more seriously by the media and politicians. And yet, both have essentially fizzled, with not much to show for the grunt work of the regular people who spend days yelling and holding signs.

I don't want to see BLM suffer the same fate. At some point, very soon, the media's fascination with police shooting unarmed minorities is going to subside, if it hasn't already (I suspect it is). The camera will stop showing up, and when camera stop showing up, so do people. And then what? The movement will die, cops will probably have a few more pieces of equipment, and the communities they police will still be rotting from the inside.

Maybe I'm wrong. Tell me how wrong I am below.

Question: Does BLM have staying power? Should the movement be more proactive and building communities, as opposed to getting police to stop shooting unarmed people in these communities?

Online Casino Games and Your Chances of Winning

For any gambler, it’s always important to consider which casino games will offer you the best odds and where you’ve got a chance to build up a decent bankroll. We’re not advocating gambling my any means but if you’re going to play at online casinos then this information should help you make a more informed decision. Before you decide on your strategy and sign up to any given online casino, check out the best 2015 no deposit casino bonuses available right now so that you've got more cash in the bank to play with! Once you've done that, let's take a look at which games offer the best odds for players.

Blackjack tends to be a relatively easier game to play, and your chances are pretty much on par with the chances of the casino. Most players tend to hit slots, unknowing that table games have much better odds for players. I think it all comes down to the psychology of each player and the thought process involved. Machine or algorithm based games allow players to deem a legitimate randomness to the game and equal chances where this is not even close in reality. On the other hand, playing table games can be quite intimidating for players who feel they have not built up enough experience when playing against other human players. There is an element of skill involved in tables games hence why the chances of winning are much greater, due to the inclusion of skill.

Blackjack tends to offer the best odds for winning, with a house edge of 1% at most online casinos. You’re also only playing against another dealer and not a range of players, which has the potential to add further complexity into the mix.

Blackjack doesn’t require much learning; it’s really quite simple and easy to understand. Craps also has some great odds at 50/50, it can be an overwhelming concept at first although the fact is that you’re just gambling on the roll of the dice and it could go either way.

Following on from that is Roulette. Now roulette is actually dependent on how you play the game, if you stick between red and black, then you’ve almost got a 50/50 chance of winning, bar the 0 and 00 position, which gives the house a slight edge. Betting between colours will give you the best chances of winning, whereas betting on specific numbers, although payouts are potentially much greater, the outcome is far less likely. We’ll leave the gamble for you to decide!

So what’s the deal with one of the most popular online casino games out there right now – online slots! Slots machines tend to feed off money and the more you pump in the more you’re eligible to cash out. Your odds will invariably increase with the more money you put into it, although with that is also the risk of losing all that money.

Penny slots actually tend to generate the lowest odds, so we’d recommend playing with the higher value slots. Remember that first and foremost it’s important to always gamble responsibly and don’t throw your money away! Do your research, due diligence and practice the games you want to play with pretend money first, before you gamble your own hard earned cash.

There’s a lot of scepticism about certain online casinos where you’ve got better chances on all the games mentioned above, although in our experience the differences are extremely minimal as all online casinos need to adhere to a standard level of fairness across the board.

Thursday, July 30, 2015

Wait, Is It Already Football Season?!?

We arw currently in the midst of what most sports fans refer to as "The Dead Period". The NBA's Summer League is over, and most of the free agents of consequence are signed. Baseball is in the dog days of summer, despite a flurry of trades in recent days. Because let's keep it one hunned... nobody cares about baseball at all until October. Thankfully, football will be back before you know it, saving us the indignity of pretending to actually be interested in our kids watching WNBA and classic college games on ESPN2.

Next-next Sunday (August 9th) the annual Hall Of Fame Game between Pittsburgh vs. Minnesota takes place in Canton. America's leading sports betting site, Sportsbook.ag has odds on this matchup, but as you're well aware, most HoF games are a couple of series with the starters and by the end of the 3rd you're looking at a bunch of guys destined for long careers at UPS fighting it out for the 53rd roster spot. Whatever, anything beats more DeflateGate™ talk. Has there ever been a more overblown (reserve pun not intended.. or maybe intended) and boring sports "controversy"?

Just play some games already.

Question: Are you tired of hearing about DeflateGate™? What do you usually do to survive this dead sports period?

Wednesday, July 22, 2015

Did Sandra Bland Cause Her Own Death?!?

[Editor's Note: You will probably not like this post. I'm cool with that. Before proceeding, note that I don't see this arrest and what happened to Bland in jail as necessarily being related either. They could very well have been, but we don't know that and will not until more information about that incident is released. And I'm not blaming her for her own death. If you walk away from this with that assumption, then either my writing has badly missed its mark or you didn't read it with an open mind. I'm talking about the arrest itself, not whatever might have happened (or not happened) in jail.]

My Pops always told me that in life, there are 5 cent issues and there are 5 dollar issues. How you respond to a given situation is, or rather should be, directly attributable to how great your offense was with the given situation.

People die every day over 5 cent issues. A stepped on shoe. Being cut off in traffic. A wayward stare at a woman. Perceived disrespect. Things that don't take food off of your table or money out of your pocket. Things that, in the grand scheme, simply aren't that important.

I thought about this last night when I watched the video of the roadside incident involving Sandra Bland and a police officer, which lead to her being jailed, and subsequently being found dead in her cell.

[Editor's Note: Before commenting on this post, try watching the video in its entirety (or at least to the 30 minute mark) with an open mind. If you can't do that, please just don't comment.]



A few things immediately stick out. The video begins (perhaps intentionally) with the cop completing a routine stop with another woman. He seems cordial, gives her a warning for what appears to be a missing insurance card or something of the sort, asks her if she's in college, etc. It seems like a fairly pleasant exchange to me. I have no idea whether the woman in the car is black, but given the location of this incident (Prairie View, TX) and the fact that there's only one college there, I think it's fair to assume she might be black.

A few minutes later, the very same cop gets back in his car, sees a silver car make a right turn at a stop in front of him, then makes a U-Turn, follows this motorist, and pulls her over after she changes lanes without signalling. I have no idea why he followed this woman, then pulled her over when she probably just did what 90% of us do when a cop's suddenly behind us (move over and pray they keep driving past). The cop clearly was either preying on her because she was black, or because he had a quota of bullsh*t stops he needed to meet. I can't call it either way.

Eventually, the cop engages the motorist, runs a check, and comes back to the car. It seems like he is going to give her the same treatment as the prior driver: a warning. But this driver (Bland) appears to engage the cop far differently than the prior driver. We don't know what that prior driver was initially pulled over for, but it's not beyond the realm of possibility that the cop pulled that very same "follow and pull over for some random bullsh*t" tactic.

So here's where the "Is this a 5 cent or 5 dollar issue?" question comes into play.

To me, this is a 5 cent issue. The cop's clearly in the wrong for pulling her over. She's got every right to be upset about this. But how she responds is literally the difference between life and death.

Bland could have noted that this cop was being a jerk, made note of his badge number, and filed a formal complaint when she got home. A person randomly pulling people over for nothing is clearly not someone you're going to win a philosophical debate on the merits of community policing with. You will not win a debate with a man who has a gun and a badge.

Being combative with a cop over what's essentially a moving violation isn't the way to handle something this trivial. You certainly have a right to be angry at being singled out for nothing. But you use the proper channels to express this anger. Resisting arrest is not such a channel.

None of this absolves the cop of his wrongdoing. He doesn't deescalate the issue. He acts petty, asking Bland if she has a problem, to put out her cigarette, to not press record on her phone (something you should do as you're being pulled over, or while the cop is running your tags). He's a terrible policeman and a terrible person.

You will not win an argument with a terrible person with a gun and badge. I repeat. You will not win. Take the "L". Get out your feelings, note the man's badge number and name, and file a report. If the department disregards the report (which is entirely likely) the net-net is still the same on that side of the equation: an asshole cop.

But you'd have one less felony.

Question: If you were put in this very same situation, would you have handled it exactly as Bland did? Be honest.

Thursday, July 16, 2015

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Thursday, July 9, 2015

Of DeAndre Jordan And Handshake Deals.

Note To Self: If I ever fulfill my dream of owning an NBA team, make every player sign a contract. If they insist on handshake deals, ask for their first born or mother (whichever's more valuable) as a retainer.
DeAndre Jordan, after verbally agreeing to a four-year max deal with the Dallas Mavericks last week, has made an about-face, re-signing with the Los Angeles Clippers in a deal ESPN sources say was completed Thursday morning shortly after midnight ET at his house in Houston.

The contract with the Clippers also is a four-year max deal that will be worth an estimated $88 million, sources told ESPN. Jordan can opt out after three years.

A Clippers contingent that included coach/team president Doc Rivers, owner Steve Ballmer and star teammates Chris Paul and Blake Griffin descended en masse on Houston to get Jordan back, meeting him at his house.

Several of the Clippers contingent remained after the end of the meeting, staying until he was to sign the deal, which the center was first able to do at 12:01 a.m. ET Thursday when a leaguewide moratorium was lifted.

The meeting didn't last long, a source said. The group talked about the issues at hand, and then the atmosphere changed to resemble a locker-room scene, including cards and video games.

Jordan did not respond to any of the Mavs' attempts to contact him Wednesday, including phone calls and text messages, and sources said Mavericks owner Mark Cuban resultingly notified several people within the organization that Jordan would be staying with the Clippers.
Reality is, this is a free country and the NBA's collective bargaining rules make Jordan's decision to return to LA perfectly legal. But everyone in this scenario looks bad, especially Jordan, who might want to hire extra security the next time he's in the Big D. Reneging on a contract, even a verbal one, is the worst way to do business, and if the NBA is smart it'll end it's silly free agency moratorium after this debacle.

The move also shifts the balance of power in the West. With Jordan in Dallas, the net result is two mediocre teams. With Jordan as a Clipper, they've gotta be considered a Top 3 contender with Paul Pierce, Lance Stephenson and some of their other offseason moves. Dallas, on the other hand, is screwed. But hey, the rules (or lack thereof) are the rules.

Adam Silver might need to fix this.

Question: Was Jordan well within his rights to back out of the Dallas deal or does this set an awful precedence for the future? Have you ever weaseled your way out of a contract?

The Confederate Flag Is Officially Gone From The SC State House. But Are Black South Carolinians Any Better Off Now?

Well, it's not technically down yet, but all the procedural nonsense is finished.
A weary South Carolina House voted early Thursday to remove the Confederate battle flag from Statehouse grounds after a day and night of passionate debate that at times drew tears, anger and calls for grace and unity from lawmakers.

The bill, which needed a two-thirds vote in each chamber, is now on GOP Gov. Nikki Haley's desk, and she said she will sign it at 4 p.m. ET. Under terms of the bill, the flag must be taken down within 24 hours of Haley's signature, and one of Haley's deputy chiefs of staff said on his personal Twitter account that would happen at 10 a.m. Friday.

House legislators spent more than 15 hours on the controversial issue sorting through about 60 amendments, finally getting to the bill itself at almost 1 a.m. Lawmakers gave the bill second reading by a vote of 93-27, then adjourned for a few minutes to start a new day's session and returned to finish their work.

They then voted 94-20 for final approval. The House has 77 Republicans and 46 Democrats.
I suspect the 10am Friday timeslot is so that the Governor and legislature can make a huge pomp and circumstance about this, as if to suggest they would have done otherwise had 9 people not been gunned down by a domestic terrorist. Call me a hater, but there's not much courageous about doing the right thing when public sentiment tells you to do so. Courage would have been to take this abomination down decades ago, but whatever. Nikki Haley undoubtedly wants to have some semblance of a career in front of her, and she really didn't have an alternative, although she played this one to perfection. Had the state legislature voted to keep the flag, Haley could have simply said that democracy worked as it should, and she tried. Again, not courageous, but certainly well played.

It'll be a bit nauseating watching people pat themselves on the back tomorrow for doing the right thing 50 years after the fact, but whatever. #Merica!

Question: Will removing the flag improve the fortunes of black people in SC, or is this purely a symbolic gesture, no matter how oppressive it might be.

AFC East Predictions for 2015!

We could just summarize it as: “It’s the Pats world and we are living in it!”, well this upcoming season it seems that the Patriots will have not problem getting back to the playoffs and defend their tittle. But, how accurate is that statement? what about the other teams on this division? Can they make a splash this season? Let’s take a look into the AFC East and determine what will be the safe and risky bets for price per head agents this upcoming season.

Let’s start by saying that the AFC East pretty much has the scariest looking D-lines in all football. All these teams have reinforced their defense in hopes to muscle their way to the post season. Perhaps the most interesting team in the mix, and one that should be very interesting to behold are the Miami Dolphins. Their defensive line was already a good line, but they went and snatched Ndamukong Suh, making the defensive line much more intimidating. However offensively the Dolphins don’t seem to be quite there yet as contenders.

The Bills on the other hand have quite the interesting roster, their additions of McCoy, Harvin and Clay add more weaponry to their offense, under the helm of one Rex Ryan one of the best defensive coaches in the game. They will put in a good fight during the season, expect price per head services to have them in high regard, but they will ultimately loose steam and not be ready for a post season run.

Perhaps the sleeper team this year will be the Jets. They have been able to build a good squad that looks great on paper. They have playoff potential and if they are able to catch the Pats slipping, they could pose a real threat to take the AFC East this season. They appear to have put together a formula that could help them topple rival Patriots.

However, the reigning World Champions are expected to go back to the Super Bowl once more. They have a Championship winning team on their hands that is expected to be on top of the division and make a serious run in the postseason… However, there is a lingering shadow of doubt hovering above them this off-season. The uncertainty of Brady’s availability due to Deflategate and the possible 4 games that Brady will be suspended. Those four games will be tough for the Pats, if Brady is in fact suspended. But, not until we are closing in to kick off anything we say will be speculating. Regardless, the Pats will still be favorites among price per head agents.

Friday, July 3, 2015

Happy 4th Of July!!!

Don't down too many burgers today. Be easy. The blog will be back to normal soon!

Online Casino News and Reviews

Online casinos and online gaming in general have been gaining unyielding momentum as of late, and the number of players worldwide keeps rising by the hour. This doesn’t come as a big surprise though; the convenience brought forth by online casinos is much-welcomed by players around the globe. The ability to place a few bets at a casino while having your morning cup of coffee sure sounds enticing, add to that the vast number of signup bonuses and impressive range of games at your disposal, and you have a winning combination on your hands. Some debate that because of the rise of online casinos, land casinos may be witnessing their downfall in the not-so-immediate future, I’d say that both online and offline have unique benefits and don’t have to necessarily work against each other.

If you are looking to get into online casinos at the moment of this writing, without any prior experience, you might be overwhelmed by the amount of information and unrecognizable terms coming your way… as any new player would. This is completely justified, how would you know which casino is reliable? Question like these often revolve around online casinos in general. Luckily enough, there are web sites which rate online casinos mainly based on constructive feedback from players, as well containing basic information in general that will let you know exactly what you’re dealing with.

Said web sites contain critical information that do most of the work for you, all you need to do is take a look at the information presented to you, and making your decision on where to stake your real money at will be quick and painless. Such information would be bonuses, deposit and withdrawal options, restricted countries (especially useful for USA players, since many online casinos prohibit players from the USA due to various laws), currencies allowed, languages and so on.

After joining any online casino, you will notice there is a vast plethora of games available to you, while every casino varies more or less at what games they have to offer, the general distribution is the same. Slots are the most common type, and they require little to no thought, most of the time you just mash the spin button and hope for a win. There are many slot game as the concept is quite simple, yet it’s even simpler to tweak some minor features and slap on a new color scheme in order to create a new slot game title. Blackjack, Roulette, Video Poker and similar game types require more proactivity from you as a player, they offer more variety and depth, and naturally the skill cap is higher than slots. If you are new to a game, the good thing is that most online casinos offer the “play for fun” feature, which is a good opportunity to learn the ins and outs of a game before putting some real money in play.

Online casinos aren’t going anywhere anytime soon, in our current information age, the benefits they carry are quite lucrative for all. Not all casinos are honest and fair though, but that is why you have fair reviews on them to warn you of things you should avoid, if they persist. As with many things in life, tread carefully when gambling and take everything in moderation, remember that having fun is the most important aspect of all.




Friday, May 29, 2015

AB.com NewsBriefs.

The blog's not dead. Seriously, it's not. I've been busy (as usual) with The Day Job, and #ThreeKidz, and life, and whatnot, but the blog isn't dead. I just don't have the usual amount of time to dedicate to this thing that I used to. It happens. If you really need to keep up with me, there's always Twitter.

Anyways, here's handful of stories, and my usual spin...

Baltimore State's Attorney Marilyn Mosby Was Once On "Judge Judy" - Wingnuts pounced on this as some sort of evidence that she shouldn't be trying the cops who shot Freddie Gray, which is really silly. She was 20 years old when this happened, acquitted herself well, and won. Nothing to see here, move right along.

Tidal Can No Longer Carry Beyonce Songs - Man, that's gonna be one awkward dinner conversation. It's also clear that buying a streaming music company and expecting it to succeed just because you're Jay-Z was a silly proposition all along. This thing will be defunct by Christmas. On a related pointless note...

Twitter users hit out at Jay Z and Beyonce's 'almost all white' Tidal staff picture - Uhhh, I've been to Norway. I saw a handful of black people while there, but it wasn't Harlem either. Not sure what this "outrage" is all about. Seriously, Black Twitter, ya'll gotta chill.

National Review Editor: ‘#SomeBlackLivesDontMatter’ to Civil Rights Movement - Seriously, read this foolishness and try not to throw your laptop out the window.

Martin O'Malley the latest Democrat to join 2016 POTUS Field - Yeah, that's gonna end badly.

Monday, May 18, 2015

200 Bike-Riding, Gun-Wielding Gang Members Walk Into A Bar (In Waco, TX)...

While you were busy inside the house watching the Clippers self-destruct against the Rockets enjoying a beautiful Sunday outdoors, a startling episode of gang violence occurred in broad daylight down in Waco, TX.
Nearly 200 people have been arrested in Texas on charges stemming from a wild biker gang shootout that left nine dead and 18 injured Sunday. All of the 192 people face charges of engaging in organized crime and were in the process of being booked by Waco police Monday morning, the department said in a statement.

Meanwhile, Twin Peaks, the “breastaurant” where the violence began around lunchtime Sunday, has been ordered shuttered for a week “due to the ongoing danger it presents to our community,” police said. The restaurant, featuring scantily clad female waitresses, was aware of the biker meetup and refused to cooperate with police, authorities said.

The Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commission is investigating the franchise, one of several found around the country. Twin Peaks corporate headquarters is “seriously considering revoking” the Waco franchise’s agreement after the bloodshed, a spokesperson said.

Police recovered some 100 weapons from the blood-spattered parking lot after the massive shootout, which began with a “push or a shove or with somebody looking at somebody wrong” inside the restaurant’s bathroom, Waco police Sgt. W. Patrick Swanton said Sunday.

Police officers were on scene after learning of the gang meetup and were able to open fire when the melee began. The nine killed belonged to two gangs, the Cossacks and Bandidos, and no police officers were reported injured.

“We are not horse playing,” Swanton said. “So many rounds were fired from bad guy weapons here. It is amazing that innocent civilians were not injured here."

No murder or weapons charges have been announced, though police continue to pour through the complex, carnage-filled scene, in a shopping plaza off Interstate 35 about 100 miles south of Dallas.

The Bandidos are considered a “Tier 2” threat, on par with the Bloods, Crips and Aryan Brotherhood, according to a 2014 gang assessment by the Texas Department of Public Safety.
When I first heard about this, my initial thought was "Damn, this is like a real-life episode of Sons Of Anarchy".



Then I saw the photo at the top of this post and thought, "Damn, this is exactly like a real-life episode of Sons Of Anarchy". Note that these gang members, who exchanged fire with the cops, are allowed to mill about as if they weren't just involved in a massive shootout that left 9 dead and 18 critically injured. That one guy is on his iPhone 5c, probably updating his Yelp review of the restaurant they just shot up ("The chicken wings were unusually dry today!") and the cops, many of whom were just shot at by these morons, literally have their backs turned to the suspects!!!

The worst part of all of this is that the local cops had intel on this biker meetup for weeks, and instead of telling the restaurant owner to not allow 200+ gang members from rival sects to have Sunday brunch at his this establishment, allowed the meetup to occur and sat idly in the parking lot just waiting for sh*t to jump off, which, to the surprise of nobody, it did. And yes, the possibility of retribution has the city on high alert, as gang members will undoubtedly try and get back at each other for those dry chicken wings.

I hate stating the glaringly obvious, but didn't we just watch weeks of peaceful protesters in Baltimore and Ferguson get their heads busted wide open for merely asking that cops be held accountable for their actions? Didn't we read thinkpiece after thinkpiece about how all of black America needed to be ashamed about the actions of these "violent thugs and rioters", and how absentee fathers, lack of personal responsibility, deteriorating families, a nihilistic culture, Democrat-run cities, and Rich Homie Quan were to blame for all of this?

I'm waiting on the 10,000 word analyses of white-on-white crime, personal responsibility, the lack of white fathers, Republican-run cities, how Hollywood glamorizes the thug culture of bikers, and how poor policing lead to this massacre, which miraculously didn't injure any innocent bystanders (that we know of yet) in a busy shopping center. I also can't wait on Conservatives to call on President Obama to condemn the actions of these thugs, and demand that white America take some accountability for this.

I won't hold my breath.

Most of the blame thus far has been put on the restaurant that hosted this Gang Brunch. How typical.

Question: Is the media giving these gang members a free pass? How would this have played out differently if the 5 gangs involved had mostly black members?

Monday, May 11, 2015

Nancy Gordeuk, TNT Academy, And Should Racist People Lose Their Jobs?!?

I'm sure ya'll have already seen this, assuming you weren't under a rock or too consumed with NBA buzzer beaters this weekend.[1]
A high school graduation in Georgia turned bizarre Friday night when the school’s founder and principal accused African-American attendees of disrupting the program that she had flubbed herself.

Nancy Gordeuk, of the nontraditional TNT Academy in Atlanta suburb Stone Mountain, blurted out, “Look who’s leaving — all the black people” to the stunned audience at a local church, two videos of the incident show.

The graduation had fallen off track when Gordeuk somehow forgot to call on the school’s valedictorian to speak and then attempted to call the room back to order when alerted to her mistake at the end of the bumpy ceremony, WAFB-TV reported.

You people are being so rude to not listen to his speech,” she tells the audience in the footage. “It’s my fault that we missed it in the program.” She adds: “Looks who’s leaving — all the black people.”

The entire audience gets up and leaves after the educator’s rant devolves into the race-based accusation.

Gordeuk apologized in a TV interview the following day and claimed the video had been taken out of context. But longer footage of the incident recorded in a different section of the audience shows her calling a man who was filming with his tablet a “goober” and a “coward” and challenging him to identify himself.
Here's the video. I'm not gonna lie, at first I thought this was a Lisa Lampanelli standup routine gone viral, but then googled the school and found out TNT Academy is an actual real life thing and holy sh*t, this woman's in charge of an actual real life school!!!!



So far, the response over the internets has been predictable. A lot of people think this woman is a best uncouth, and at worst, blatantly racist to single out black people for leaving early when clearly there are lots of people of all races leaving. Others are siding with Mrs. Gordeuk, asserting that she was merely calling attention to the race of the majority of those leaving, and besides, "if blacks didn't loot and riot in Baltimore nobody would say such things in the first place" and "if only you people stopped killing each other and pulled up your pants and quit voting for Democrats all the time".

Gordeuk, in a strange sequence of events, initially blamed the devil (!!!) for her momentary racism before settling on the "goobers" in the audience who brought the "racist comment" (her words) out of her mouth.

Here's the thing my parents always taught me: Nobody can bring anything out of you that's not already in there. Nobody.

I find it quite hard to believe that this was the first time Gordeuk done anything suspect, and many of those in attendance at the graduation seems to echo that sentiment. Since she's technically the founder of the school, it's unlikely she's be fired, but she might just need to fall on the sword anyway since whatever government funding her school gets is inevitably gonna be pulled after this. And props to parents of all races for getting up and leaving after this classless and offensive display.

Seriously, America, grow up already.

Question: Does this lady deserve to be fired? Was her statement racist, or just racial?!?

[1] Seriously, three days, three buzzer beating game winners. In what other sport does this occur?

Chris Christie Literally Just Ate Away His White House Aspirations.

No need to lie: I've gone on record repeatedly saying that (pre-BridgeGate) Chris Christie was a guy I'd at least remotely consider voting for in 2016. I'm no Hilary fan (at all) and a moderate Conservative like Christie seemed like a viable alternative at one point. Of course, his past two years have gone about as well as the New York Jets past two years have, with one controversy after the next. Big C.R.I.S. has essentially been lapped by contemporaries like Jeb Bush and Scott Walker, and it seemed unlikely that he would even throw his hat in the ring.

Correction: he won't be throwing his hat into the ring.
New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie (R) spent more than $82,000 in taxpayer money on concessions at NFL games -- a sum that Republicans later reimbursed to the state Treasury to avoid impropriety.

According to a New Jersey Watchdog analysis of records from the governor's office that was published Monday, Christie used $300,000 of his $360,000 state allowance over five years to purchase food, alcohol and desserts. Some $82,594 of that sum went to Delaware North Sportservice, which operates the concessions at MetLife Stadium, the home of both the New York Giants and Jets teams.

To avoid a potential scandal that could embarrass their rising political star, the New Jersey Republican State Committee reimbursed the Treasury in March 2012 for Christie’s purchases from “DNS Sports.” Since then, the governor has refrained from using his expense account at MetLife and other sports venues.
According to the analysis, Christie was also a big fan of the grocery store Wegmans Food Markets, where he spent $76,373 in 53 shopping runs. A spokesman for the governor defended the nature of the expenses, explaining they were for "official" and "business" purposes.
The punchlines sorta write themselves here. I guy who's battled weight problems his entire life gets undone by, what else, food? How fitting. It's also sorta ironic that a guy who railed against teacher pensions to the point of bullying has wasted money in the most wasteful way possible: his gullet. And at a stadium for a team he doesn't even like (he's a noted Cowboys fan, which is just all kinda of stupid).

$82,594 on snacks? What the hell was he eating, gold-plated nachos?

Have a seat, buddy. Actually, make that two.

Question: Does the lack of a moderate conservative to balance out Hillary concern you at all? Would you have considered voting for this guy under any circumstances? What's his next career move?

Thursday, April 23, 2015

Note To Self: Never Marry A Kardashian. Never, Ever.

So, just to tally it up...

Lamar Odom marries Khloe Kardashian. Promptly develops a crack habit at age 30 (who does that?), and is out in the NBA quicker than you can say "Wait, they fired Scott Brooks?"[1]

Kanye West marries Kim Kardashian, and doesn't even sound like a guy from the southside of Chicago anymore. Seriously, have you heard Yeezy talk lately? He sounds like the guy who makes my (occasional) iced coffee.

The first guy who married Kris Jenner died of throat Cancer. I have no idea what to categorize what the hell is currently happening to Bruce Jenner, but it's pretty clear why that white guy who has kids by the other Kardashian has no interest whatsoever in wifing her up.



Look, I'm not here to disparage Bruce Jenner from doing whatever it takes to find peace in life. After 20 years married to that woman and raising those asshole kids, I might do something racial too. I'm not sure if "something radical" includes removing my penis, but whatever.

Question: Are you equally confused by this?

[1] Kevin Durant impending free agency is gonna be weirder and more drawn out that any of Lebron's "Decisions".

Monday, April 20, 2015

Managing An NFL Roster Has More Questions Than Ken Jennings.

It seems every pick of professional sports drafts is accompanied by some spirited crowd reaction, and much of the time it's negative. "Oh, not that guy," fans moan. Because fans always know more than seven-figure management, right?

Sometimes, they actually do. The Cheesehead and the 12th Man are often plenty smart to avoid some of the crazy choices made each spring.

But remember some of the endless variables that GM's are trying to conquer, all in the confines of salary caps, irrational coaches, and the ongoing debate about the quality of the game.

Polama-losing Players

First thing to hit the roster is the known departures. Guys like Troy Polamalu are hanging it up permanently, leaving roster holes that aren't filled the way they are when a trade takes place. Hey Art: #43 and his hair are gone. Find yourself a safety.

This moves the debate right to the draft. What do the Steelers do? Conventional wisdom says they'll use their first-round pick to go with Bama's Landon Collins, but not every roster gap is as cut and dried elsewhere in the league.

The X factor is always the choice between free agents, trading, and drafting, and even drafting then trading. The teamless guys essentially become more draft options, so the front office can decide to settle certain roster issues before the draft by signing a free agent. They can also offer a trade to do the same thing, or, if they have a nice high pick in the draft, they can select a high-value guy and make an immediate trade to address several shortcomings with a single #1 jersey photo op.

Off-Season Surprises

But at least the Steelers know that Polamalu is done. Limbo players provide the most headaches for GM's and fans. Late breaking word of Adrian Peterson's reinstatement throws everything into a tailspin. Does he seek a fresh start outside Minnesota? What draft choice does he supplant if he's picked up as a free agent? His April 17th return gives team just 13 days to decide if and how Peterson can figure into their plans.

Peyton Manning gave his decision to return early on, so the Broncos have made their calculations. But other banged-up, high-mileage vets may have intentions for another season but could lack the physical ability to follow through. Do they release somebody, a la Jerry Rice, and get a fresh face, or do they gamble on the rickety knee or catchy back for one more season?

Keeping Up Via Cable

Seriously, what would we do without it? The draft is a lot to keep up with, especially as contracts approach bonus deadlines, the draft sneaks closer, and the unexpected arrest or injury keeps popping up. Haunting the phone for breaking word is not good for your posture or your relationships.

And when there are packs of journalists roosted around all 32 stadiums and shadowing dozens of agents and players, the news will be out there, and the first sources to report most of it are sports networks on cable TV. When season ticket prices go up and it's time to lower the grocery bill and cut cable costs, true fans will give up any number of cooking channels and news networks to maintain their limitless sports sources.

With the advent of the NFL Network, the draft gets coverage on par with a presidential election. We need to know, ice pack by ice pack, who's not physically ready for the season. We want to spy on therapists to find out who's unhappy with the new defensive coordinator, or the new stadium, or the film guy.

Thursday, April 16, 2015

So It Turns Out The Tulsa Pay To Play Cop Wasn't Even Properly Trained.

This story just keeps getting more and more disgusting.
Supervisors at the Tulsa County Sheriff’s Office were ordered to falsify a reserve deputy’s training records, giving him credit for field training he never took and firearms certifications he should not have received, sources told the Tulsa World.

At least three of reserve deputy Robert Bates’ supervisors were transferred after refusing to sign off on his state-required training, multiple sources speaking on condition of anonymity told the World.
Bates, 73, is accused of second-degree manslaughter in the shooting death of Eric Harris during an undercover operation on April 2.

The sources’ claims are corroborated by records, including a statement by Bates after the shooting, that he was certified as an advanced reserve deputy in 2007.

An attorney for Harris’ family also raised questions about the authenticity of Bates’ training records.
Additionally, Sheriff Stanley Glanz told a Tulsa radio station this week that Bates had been certified to use three weapons, including a revolver he fired at Harris. However, Glanz said the Sheriff’s Office has not been able to find the paperwork on those certifications.

The sheriff’s deputy that certified Bates has moved on to work for the US Secret Service, Glanz said during the radio interview. [Editor's Note: Jesus Christ!]

Bates, a wealthy Tulsa insurance executive, turned himself in Tuesday after being charged on Monday in Harris’ death. He is free on $25,000 bond.
So in short, this 73 year old was basically only a "Reserve Deputy" because he gave money to the right political campaigns and purchased cars and equipment for the department. For that mere pittance, he was allowed on the streets, with lethal weapons, and eventually killed a man (by accident).

Merica'.

Question: When this whole thing unravels, how many people in that department will be facing criminal charges? I say at least a dozen.

Monday, April 13, 2015

Hillary Clinton's Running For President. Shocker!!!

Yeah, we all knew this was coming. But Jesus, this is some guru-level "pandering to every possible demographic that we focus grouped" sh*t right here.



You guys know where I stand on this one: I thought Clinton was an awful, undisciplined candidate in 2007. When 2008 came around and she started pulling random (often racist) bullsh*t and trickery while getting her butt kicked in primary after primary, I told ya'll I wouldn't forget that sh*t next time.

I haven't forgotten that sh*t.

The sad thing is that Clinton doesn't have an even remotely serious challenger on the left. I say this as a guy who has lived in Maryland for two decades and finds Martin O'Malley about as exciting as a prostate exam. That is to say, I don't find him very exciting at all. Ditto for Elizabeth Warren, whose sole calling card (Wall Street reform) is hardly on my Top 10 List Of Sh*t That Potentially Keeps Me Up At Night. Joe Biden's more of a joke than the Sacramento Kings roster.

It's clear as Evian that the DNC spent more time celebrating in the afterglow of Obama winning than developing a bench of credible candidates for 2016. By comparison, the GOP has more candidates than Gucci Mane has mixtapes. And like Gucci Mane mixtapes, most of the the GOP's candidates are awful, incomprehensible, and all sound alike. This is coming from a guy who occasionally enjoys Gucci Mane mixtapes.

Buurrrrr. Burrrrr.

2016 is shaping up to be interesting in more ways than expected. Here's to hoping someone, anyone, makes Hillary Clinton break a sweat before waltzing to the nomination.

Question: What did you think of the Hillary 2016 rollout?!?

Tulsa "Reserve Deputy" Kills Black Man In Real Life Version Of "The Purge".

If you're even remotely familiar with the movie series "The Purge", you know the premise is that once a year (or is it every other year?), for about 12 hours, martial law is declared and citizens can basically kill anyone without repercussions. Rich people hold "Purge Parties" in which they purchase a poor person to kill for their own merriment, just because they can afford to do so. The movies, while put together in typical Hollywood thriller/horror fashion, are meant to convey a deeper message about how the wealthy control the poor in this country. They're damn good, and the 3rd installment drops next year. I'll be waiting on Fandango.

I can't help but think about the odd parallels between those movies and last week's police shooting in Tulsa, Oklahoma, as more details about the "policeman" who mistook a gun for a taser come to light.
The Tulsa cop who accidentally shot and killed a man when he meant to use his Taser this weekend was revealed as 73-year-old Robert Charles Bates, a reserve deputy-slash-millionaire.

According to the Tulsa World News, Bates, who donated $2,500 to help a Tulsa sheriff get re-elected to office, is one of 100 reserve officers supplementing the city’s police department, and was serving on the Violent Crimes Task Force when he unwittingly gunned down Eric Courtney Harris, a convicted meth dealer who was attacking a fellow officer.

Maj. Shannon Clark told the World that Bates, who was honored as Reserve Deputy of the Year in 2011, was indeed trained for fieldwork, kind of: “What I will say is that the deputy had the specialty training to be assigned to this task force, similar to what a full-time deputy would have had.”

Bates, who founded an insurance company and serves as its executive, is currently the subject of a civil lawsuit filed by his former company.
Let that one sink in for a moment: This "Reserve Deputy", was only a "Reserve Deputy" because he ponied up a large campaign donation. Basically this was a rich old man who, instead of doing typical rich old man sh*t like suntanning on a bed of hundred dollar bills aboard a yacht whilst being fed grapes by Armenian hookers, decided he'd rather get his Police Academy: Citizens On Patrol-on. Seriously, what's an old man who isn't even a real cop doing riding shotgun on a potentially dangerous, high-profile undercover sting mission? I don't care how much "training" he had, he had no business being on this case.

[On a completely unrelated note: That old man's got some impressive footspeed. He closed on Eric Harris, a man nearly half his age, like he was an NFL cornerback. That was some vintage Darrell Green sh*t right there.]

All that aside, I can't imagine why this old man's not being charged with murder. This "accident" cost a man his life, and at what cost? Harris allegedly was slangin' crystal meth, but they set him up with an illegal gun sell, which seems all sorts of wrong and ass backwards. Is that how they get down in Oklahoma? Maybe Kevin Durant should come back to DC after all.

None of this excuses Harris' actions: You can't sell a bootleg Ruger in a trailer park, run when 5-0 rolls up, and expect to not get your ass kicked. But last I checked, running from the police wasn't a crime worthy of the death penalty.[1]

[Update: Bates has been charged with manslaughter.]

Question: Does it disturb you that people can become "cops" by simply giving to a political campaign?

[1] BTW, this was all captured with body cameras. Still no conviction of the "cop". I'm not sure "video proof" changes the equation much here. The issue is that so many cops (not all, by any means, but enough of them) just don't exhibit the level of competency that this very dangerous, very difficult job demands. Body cameras, and dash cameras don't fix that.

Sunday, April 12, 2015

Man On "Divorce Court" Accuses Girlfriend Of Sleeping With The Entire Wu-Tang Clan. Even Cappadonna.

I love myself some judge shows, as anyone who's a longtime reader of this blog knows. 50% of the time, the shows do indeed feature real people with real cases. And the other 50% of the time, you get sh*t like this, so lazily scripted that I'd rather watch a 30 minute Everest College informercial instead.



Let's just play along, and assume this was an actual couple, just for sh*ts and giggles tho. Seriously, lady, you tryina' play a brotha like this? Really? You got on the bus with the entire Wu-Tang and stayed until 7am just "talking about politics"? Really?

There's an old adage: "A$$, Gas or Cash. Nobody Rides For Free".

I think Wu-Tang Clan WAS somethin' to f*ck wit' that night. Shame An A N*gga, in this case the n*gga in question being Mr. Sellers. Watch these rap n*ggas get all up in yo' guts. Alright, that's enough already.

Seriously though, these two don't even remotely look like two people who'd ever be a couple in any alternate universe, let alone one manufactured by a lousy syndicated TV show.

Woman-Up Judge Toler. Get better writers, or give Mablean her show back. Sheesh.

Question: How blatantly fake was this? What was the giveaway sign?

Monday, March 23, 2015

Martese Johnson, Respectability Politics, And Why Being A Young Black Male Is So Damn Treacherous.

So another week, another brother catching a beatdown from police. I didn't touch this story when it broke last week, mostly because I was busy with life, but also because I'm just plain tired of these stories. They're all the same: someone gets beatdown by cops, the usual suspects step forward to claim that maybe the guy had it coming, while others immediately jump to the conclusion that the cops were racist. The rush to judgement from both sides is predictable, yet still ultimately counterproductive.

I don't know Martese Johnson, but I'm only about 90% certain I looked just like him, high top fade and all, when I was a youngster in college. We share the same fraternity. We were both at college on academic scholarships. I'm pretty sure he had the whole "work twice as hard to get half as far" mantra drilled into his head by his parents as I did. I'm certain he was taught to be respectful of those in positions of authority, especially when said authority figures have guns. And like me (and, well, every college student ever) he drank before he was of legal age, because again, that's just what kids do.

What happened between the time when Johnson was asked to leave the Irish pub after being denied entrance and when he ended up face down on the concrete bleeding like Tully Blanchard remains to be seen. What's somewhat notable about this case is that despite there being dozens of people standing around when this happened, there video evidence made public to date only shows the end result, not the events that occurred before Johnson caught a beatdown. Since society loves to jump to conclusions, many (including the arresting officers) have asserted that Johnson had to be belligerent and drunk, thus leading to his arrest. Well, the owner of the bar is finally speaking (perhaps to mute some rumblings by former employees that they actively discriminated against black male patrons) and his story seems to contradict that of the officers.
Martese Johnson, the University of Virginia student whose bloody arrest outside a pub last week triggered protests, was "polite and cordial" when he was denied entry and did not appear drunk, the management of the bar said. Images of Johnson being held down by officers, his face streaked with blood, were shared widely online. The hashtag #JusticeForMartese gained popularity online, while some people held "Black Lives Matter" signs on a march through Charlottesville.

Trinity Irish Pub said that Johnson, 20, was denied entry after he gave the wrong answer when a bouncer examined his ID and asked him the ZIP code. The bar's statement quoted its managing owner, Kevin Badke, as saying that Johnson was "a disappointed patron."

Mr. Badke immediately responded that he could not accept it. Mr. Johnson, probably realizing the reason for the error, stated that he had moved. At this point, Mr. Badke and Mr. Johnson had a brief conversation because Mr. Badke is from the south side of Chicago, where Mr. Johnson indicated he was from. In Mr. Badke's opinion, Mr. Johnson did not appear to be intoxicated in the least. Despite the conversation, which was cordial and respectful, Mr. Badke reiterated that he could not permit him to enter. He handed Mr. Johnson his ID back and Mr. Johnson began walking in a north westerly direction up University Avenue. A few moments later, Mr. Badke heard a commotion, turned, and saw Mr. Johnson on the ground about 30 feet further up on University Avenue with ABC agents detaining him.

"There have been reported comments that management of Trinity were belligerent towards Mr. Johnson or that Mr. Johnson was belligerent towards management," the statement said. "Those allegations are patently untrue, as the brief conversation that occurred was polite and cordial."
So yeah, it seems like Mr. Johnson didn't present a fake ID[1] and wasn't being some drunk hothead after all, not that even that would have justified how he was treated.

We'll see how this case unveils, but one thing I'm certain of is that Johnson's gonna sue the state of Virginia and will probably get a very nice settlement when all's said and done. Not that that makes this any easier, of course.

Question: What do you think actually happened here?

[1] I do have the question the judgement of a 20 year old trying to enter a 21 and over bar with an out of state non-student ID that was 4 years old. I mean, come on bruh, you're 20 now but look 16. In that ID photo you must have looked 12. Bad look, homie.

So How Screwed Up Is Your NCAA Bracket?

Like 90% of Real Americans, I spent a good portion of last week parked in front of my TV watching free labor generate billions of dollars for corporate overlords. Sure, the NCAA made some cosmetic changes to silence critics last year, but the fact remains that the kids hardly make any money for all that fancy dribbling and dunking. Whatever. It is what it is. I suppose these same kids could just go play in the NBA D-League for a year instead of subjecting themselves to the tyranny of comely co-eds, universal on-campus adoration and as much free Jordan Brand® gear as they want. So yeah, I guess you gotta hear both sides.

All that said, this past weekend showed everything that's great and awful about college basketball. The game, when it's at its best can be fast paced and full of momentum changing plays. Any team can, on the right day when the shots are falling, beat any team. On the other hand, the quality of play isn't universally high. For every UNC/Arkansas nailbiter, there's a bunch of poorly paced Maryland/West Virginia games where neither team can score in a brothel and turn the ball over more often than I used to blog here.[1] In the end, it's all a mixed bag and truth be told, if not for the element of betting I really wonder if it would be as much of an American cultural phenomenon as it is.

So yeah, I'm cheering for my Tarheels, and my hometown Wolfpack who both advanced to the 2nd weekend but probably have no real chance of surviving to the Final Four. Kentucky has plenty of flaws, but certainly has got a puncher's change of ending the season undefeated and hoisting a trophy. I hate Duke with a passion but I could certainly see them on the business end of that L once all's said and done. If you're a betting man you might wanna run with that.

Question: How screwed up is your bracket? Who you got winning it all?

[1] Huzzah!

Monday, March 9, 2015

Oklahoma Fraternity Suspended For Being Racist Idiots.

Given how many racist frat party photos surface every Halloween, should we really be all that surprised by this? I'm not really sure...
The University of Oklahoma is immediately severing "all ties and affiliations" between the school and its local Sigma Alpha Epsilon fraternity, the university president said today, in the wake of a video that purportedly shows members of the chapter singing a racist chant.

The video, which surfaced over the weekend, was posted to Twitter by Unheard, which describes itself as "an alliance of black students organized for change within campus administration and atmosphere." The video shows young men on a bus chanting, "There will never be a n----r at SAE."

The tweet, directed at OU president David Boren, said, "Racism is alive at The University of Oklahoma." Boren said in a written statement today that all ties and affiliations between the school and chapter are "hereby severed."
Here's the video in question.



Note: If you look at the photo above (apparently the same frat, different chapter, a few years ago) you'll notice there are indeed, quite a few niggers in SAE. But whatever.

I'm glad the school moved quickly and swiftly to root out these morons. Good for you, OU.

Question: Does this even surprise you?

President Obama's Selma Speech.

I watched this live, with my wife and all 3 of our kids. I'm not particularly prone to hyperbole, but this speech felt like history in the making. It was, in a word, excellent.



Speeches like this both inspire and frustrate me. Inspire, because this guy's such an excellent orator when he's really dialed in. Frustrating, because for all of his beautiful rhetoric, he's such a mediocre leader who seems like he essentially checked out of this job about 4 years ago. I could go on and on, but why bother?

Let's just enjoy this speech for what it is. Riveting. Beautiful. And most likely, timeless.

Question: Did you watch this speech live? How did it make you feel?

CARPE DIEM DESTROYS THE FIELD IN THE TAMPA BAY DERBY.

Despite being the race favorite there were questions about Carpe Diem heading in to Saturday’s Grade 2, $350,000 Tampa Bay Derby. Carpe Diem had impressed as a two year old, winning the Grade 1 Breeders’ Cup Futurity before finishing second to Texas Red in the Breeders’ Cup Juvenile. The issue wasn’t his performance as a two year old but the fact that he hadn’t raced since. Trainer Todd Pletcher wanted to ‘bring him along slowly’ and two months out from the Kentucky Derby there was some opinion that he was starting his three year old season too late to be a factor.

Those thoughts surfaced again near the start of the Tampa Bay Derby when Carpe Diem emphatically refused to enter the gate. He eventually made it in and from that point he ‘flipped the switch’ and transformed from a balky horse making his three year old debut to a monster that already ranks among the horses to beat at the Kentucky Derby. Carpe Diem maintained perfect position throughout the race before closing strong, eventually taking the win by five lengths and looking like he could have run the rest of the afternoon. If you missed out this time to bet on Carpe Diem, then make sure you don't miss out on Kentucky Derby. This site has a list of Kentucky Derby betting rules and types of bets you can place on horses.

Carpe Diem is owned by WinStar Farms and the stable’s President, Elliott Walden, said that railbirds had been telling him that his horse was the ‘best training in Florida’. He continued to explain that it’s one thing to hear that from third party observers but quite another to see the horse prove it on the track. Walden also brushed off any concern about Carpe Diem’s balky pre-race behavior saying that ‘he’s a little headstrong’.

Trainer Todd Pletcher won the Tampa Bay Derby for the third time in his career. He won previously with Limehouse (2004) and Verrazano (2013). Pletcher watched Carpe Diem give him victory number three via simulcast from Gulfstream Park.

The Tampa Bay Derby has become a good launching pad for a Kentucky Derby bid in recent years. The Pletcher trained Super Saver didn’t win the Tampa Bay Derby but peaked on the first Saturday in May to win the ‘Run for the Roses’. Street Sense also parlayed a Tampa Bay Derby run into a Kentucky Derby victory in 2007.

You! Drugstore, a face of modern Canadian pharmacy

Each economy strives to bring improvements and innovations. It is a part of a big global race that changes day to day, and its participants along with it. In the process, many companies perish because of the bad adaptation to the new situation. Some of them see opportunity in a crisis. They grow in a volatile environment, making the best out of newly established rules of the game. It all depends on the character of the company and the mindset of the management. As they say: “He who dares, wins.” This is something that can be applied in all the countries and for all the companies. Canada, as one of the leading countries in the world, abides by these rules. This is a country with good economy and solid heath care system. One of the firms that managed to adapt to these modern set of rules is You! Drugstore in Canada.

This is one of the premium Canadian pharmacies, with headquarters in Winnipeg, Manitoba. It is situated in 359, Johnson Avenue West, in the northern part of the city. The store is a part of shopping strip. The neighborhood is really nice, with a lot of green areas and trees. For those that want to purchase their medicine from this place, there is a medium-sized parking lot in front of the office. Others that use the bus to reach the pharmacy have a stop nearby.

Like any other pharmacy, this one makes its living selling drugs. There is nothing special to be mentioned about that. The catch is how they do it. This is a Canadian online pharmacy. Although it has normal headquarters like any other drugstore, it makes most of the sales through the Internet. The management created a widespread network that serves entire Canada and helps provide medication to people all over the country. Besides internet orders, there are also mail and phone orders. All you need is to register, chose a product and provide the doctor’s prescription. If you have any additional question, you can either call the staff of this Canadian online pharmacy or inquire through the internet. The web site is very modern and up-to-date, providing all the necessary information to its customers. This pharmacy has CIPA seal (Certified Canadian International Pharmacy), meaning that they have premium service and products. If there is any issue with the provided medication, you can always send it back to this Canadian drugstore. There is a 90 days return policy, giving you more than enough time to return the drugs back to You! Drugstore. Under the Canadian legislation, all the returned medication will be destroyed.

In this modern world, things change in a blink of an eye. This makes for a dynamic environment in which no company is safe. For us, consumers, this is a great opportunity. The fact that everyone is running around in order to please you is excellent. You will always be certain that the companies such as You! Drugstore are doing their best to provide you exquisite experience.

Thursday, March 5, 2015

Your Daily Reminder Of Why You Should Never, Ever, Ever Move To Ferguson, Missouri.

The Feds finally released their investigation into the foolishness that is Ferguson PD, and the findings were not pretty. There's a lot to unpack here, and I don't have the brain space to do so. Read, digest, and discuss below.
The federal government on Wednesday called for a massive overhaul of the law enforcement practices of this St. Louis suburb in a scathing report that found the city regularly engaged in unconstitutional practices that had the heaviest impact on Ferguson’s black residents.

The long-anticipated report detailed systemic issues with the Ferguson Police Department and its municipal court, and provided accounts of individual incidents, many based on police reports authored by Ferguson officers. The report lends force to the complaints of protesters and some Ferguson residents, who have long said the city treated them as sources of revenue rather than citizens to be protected.

In a briefing with reporters on Wednesday, a Justice Department official expressed confidence that Ferguson could implement a lengthy list of necessary reforms. The official said the city cooperated with the DOJ investigation, and a meeting with Ferguson officials on Tuesday was not adversarial.

But the public reaction of Ferguson officials to the damning report left unclear what will happen next. Mayor James Knowles III made a brief statement before cameras on Wednesday night, announcing that one Ferguson employee who sent racist emails mentioned in the report had been fired, and two other employees who sent racist emails were on leave.

Yet Knowles, who appeared without police Chief Tom Jackson or other city officials, gave no indication that his government would continue to cooperate with federal civil rights officials. And the racist emails, though disturbing, were only a minor component of the lengthy federal report, which called into question the city’s entire approach to policing and the enforcement of its municipal code.

The report raises the question of whether the Ferguson will continue to operate its own police department or instead contract with another law enforcement agency. Ferguson is one of the smallest cities subjected to such a Justice Department probe, and the high cost of implementing reforms, along with an anticipated decrease in municipal court revenue from fines and fees, may force the city to consider disbanding its police force of just over 50 officers.

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A damning report released by the Justice Department on Wednesday heavily criticized the operations of the police department and municipal court in Ferguson, Missouri, where Michael Brown, an unarmed black teen, was shot and killed by a white police officer in August.

DOJ’s civil rights investigation into the Ferguson criminal justice system found that authorities have routinely violated the rights of black citizens and have used tickets to generate revenue for the city.

Many police officers “appear to see some residents, especially those who live in Ferguson’s predominately African-American neighborhoods, less as constituents to be protected than as potential offenders and sources of revenue,” in part due to city policies, according to the report.

The Justice Department also disclosed several emails sent by current Ferguson officials over the past several years that reveal racial bias. One email depicted President Barack Obama as a chimpanzee. Another email described a man who wanted to get welfare for his dogs because they were “mixed in color, unemployed, lazy, can’t speak English and have no frigging clue who their Daddies are.” A third email included a photo depicting bare-chested dancing women with the caption “Michelle Obama’s High School Reunion,” while another email included jokes about Muslims.

The report found that city, police and court officials have “worked in concert to maximize revenue at every stage of the enforcement process” for several years.
Ugh, my brain hurts.

Question: What's your read on all this?

Tuesday, March 3, 2015

Somebody Take Steve Francis To Rehab, Please.

Man, it's sad watching a person go from sugar to sh*t so publicly, and so swiftly. Former Maryland Terrapin and NBA All Star Steve Francis has seemingly been on a 24/7 bender since he got traded from the Rockets. Just when you thought things couldn't get any worse for homie, he got duffed onstage at a concert of some sort over the weekend.



This isn't the first time Stevie Franchise got jumped in the club.



Or did something downright head-scratching in the club.



Seriously, Steve, just stay out the club. Bad things tend to happen to old guys there.

All jokes aside, go to rehab, please Steve. Not that Rehab, real rehab.

Letting Your Kids Play Outside Unsupervised Is Now Known As "Free Range Parenting".

I grew up in an outer suburb of a medium-sized city in North Carolina. In the 80's. Our town was safe, meaning random violent crime was basically non-existent. Like most of you, I played around the neighborhood, rode my bike all over town with my friends, went out first thing in the morning and came home when the streetlights came on. And yes, I occasionally got into trouble and did a lot of stuff a preteen probably shouldn't have been allowed to do. In retrospect, I probably had a little too much freedom, but reality is, having few boundaries as a child actually helped me learn to respect them as an adult.

Fast forward 30 some years, and I have 3 kids of my own. I live in the inner suburbs of a very large city. It's every bit as safe as the neighborhood I grew up in. Sometimes I see kids ride their bikes up the street without parental supervision, but most of the kids who are outside tend to congregate in driveways and shoot hoops at most. Our kids are too young to do much of anything outside without us, and I'm not sure they will when they're of age. Not because the world's become more dangerous for kids (it hasn't), but because societal attitudes towards unsupervised play have changed dramatically. In short: if your kids are out on their own, somebody is prolly gonna call CPS on your ass.

Case in point, this story, from my current hometown.
The Maryland parents investigated for letting their young children walk home by themselves from a park were found responsible for “unsubstantiated” child neglect in a decision that has not fully resolved their clash with authorities over questions of parenting and children’s safety.

Danielle and Alexander Meitiv hoped the nationally debated case — which has lit up social media and brought a dozen television film crews to their Silver Spring home — would be dismissed after a two-month investigation by Montgomery County Child Protective Services.

But the finding of unsubstantiated child neglect means CPS will keep a file on the family for at least five years and leaves open the question of what would happen if the Meitiv children get reported again for walking without adult supervision.

The parents say they will continue to allow their son, Rafi, 10, and daughter Dvora, 6, to play or walk together, and won’t be swayed by the CPS finding.

The case dates to Dec. 20, when police picked up the two Meitiv children walking in Silver Spring on a Saturday afternoon after someone reported them. The parents said that they gradually let the pair take walks on their own and that their children knew the area, which is along busy Georgia Avenue.

The Meitivs said they would not have allowed the one-mile outing from Woodside Park to their home if they did not feel their children were up to it. The siblings made it halfway before police stopped them.

The Meitivs’ decision letter, dated Feb. 20, said the CPS investigation had been completed and would be closed. It cited a finding of unsubstantiated child neglect and made note of an appeals process.
Since this happened not far from my house, I've probably got a very different take on this than some might. The park that the kids were left in is notorious for having homeless people and random walkers by. Sure, there are lots of parents there usually, but it's a huge, sprawling area with lots of trees. If someone wanted to grab your child and make a run for it, they prolly could and you wouldn't notice it. Likewise, the mile that the kids walked home is through a very busy and congested downtown area. The cops probably should have stopped the kids, and were definitely in the right for considering this a case of possible neglect. Walking back home from your neighborhood playground, this is not.



On the other hand, I sorta get where these parents are coming from. While society's views on this topic have changed, reality is that kids simply don't get abducted by strangers any more now than they did when I was a child. Sure, the omnipresence of shows like "To Catch A Predator" and "20/20" makes it feel that way, but more times than not when kids go missing it's via a parent and part of a custody battle. You've got a better chance of winning the DC Lottery than your kid being snatched off the sliding board.

All that said, while I admire these parents (and really, really hate the term "Free Range Parenting"[1]) they were dead assed wrong here. There are other ways to prove your point. Having your kids play Frogger on Georgia Avenue isn't one of them.

Question: Do you allow your kids to play outside unsupervised? Do you differ from your parents on this issue? Were these "Free Range Parents" dead assed wrong?

[1] "Free Range Parenting" sounds like something you do to livestock.