Tuesday, March 10, 2015

civilized madison police chief infuriates north atlantic tribeswoman...,

cityofmadison |  Sir Robert Peel, arguably one of those who first articulated the necessity of having "police" in our midst, created a number of fundamental principles by which police should view their mission.  Peel lived and made these observations in the mid-1800's. Surprisingly, despite the passage of time, many of these tenets still resonate today, in terms of what we expect from our police. The principle which has always loomed largest for me is:  "The police, at all times, should maintain a relationship with the public that gives reality to the historic tradition that the POLICE ARE THE PUBLIC AND THE PUBLIC ARE THE POLICE (my emphasis added).

I begin this blog with this thought hanging heavy in my heart.  Our community is grieving and hurting over the loss of a young African American man, who life was ended far too soon.  His family, his friends, and our community are in mourning.  The police are part of this community---and we share this sense of loss.  I have stated as much to representatives of his family, in statements to the press, and to our work force. Reconciliation cannot begin without my stating "I am sorry," and I don't think I can say this enough.  I am sorry.  I hope that, with time, Tony's family and friends can search their hearts to render some measure of forgiveness.  Certainly, this will not take place soon given the circumstances.  It may take some time for this loop to close but I pray that it will, in fact, close.

There is a process that now takes place which involves two tiers of independent review of the events that occurred on Williamson Street last Friday night.  The State of Wisconsin's Division of Criminal Investigation (DCI) has the exclusive authority to investigate all elements of the officer involved shooting--forensics, interviews, technology feeds, etc..  MPD, like the public, has questions that will only be answered when DCI's findings are set for release.  This investigation is then turned directly over to the second layer of review, the District Attorney's Office, who then makes a ruling on the question of whether there is criminal culpability on the part of my officer.  I would urge that everyone consider that the foundations of the much-maligned criminal justice system should still pay heed to the basic requirements of due process and fundamental fairness.  If it were any one of us accused of wrong doing, wouldn't we hope for as much?

No one joins my profession hoping to do harm to anyone; we put on "armor" (bullet resistant vests) each day with the understanding that today may be the day that I provide the ultimate act of selflessness; to lay down one's life for a complete stranger.  I cannot think of a more noble cause than to be a "guardian" to those who need us most--the vulnerable, the voiceless, the victims.  That is what I and so many like me have sworn to do and have made it our life's calling.  While I know that a sacred trust has been severely tested, I ask that people not define the legacy of service that this Department has provided to our public by this tragic incident.  Let us continue to demonstrate to you that our commitment transcends mere rhetoric. . .we show how much we care on a daily basis; one call at a time.  I realize that in order for us to achieve greater strides in community-based policing, the cornerstone for making that a reality starts with us earning your trust.  I want that to happen, my Department wants that to happen, desperately.  Remember, we live here, we work here, we go to church here, we're your neighbor(s), our kids go to school with your kids, and we all want the best of what life has to offer our families.  The police are the public and the public are the police. . .
Posted by: Chief Koval 

Monday, March 09, 2015

the chemical muse at the root of western civilization

theatlantic |  In a massive study published in the Journal of Psychopharmacology, scientists at the Norwegian University for Science and Technology at Trondheim concluded that there is no link between use of LSD and psilocybin (the active ingredient in magic mushrooms) and mental health problems. The study selected 135,000 participants at random—including 19,000 who had used psychedelic drugs—and found no evidence linking such drugs to the onset of mental disorders.

"Over 30 million U.S. adults have tried psychedelics and there just is not much evidence of health problems," author and clinical psychologist Pål-Ørjan Johansen said.

Johanesen was careful to acknowledge that users of psychedelic drugs are not immune to bad trips, and are as susceptible as anyone else to mental health issues. But his findings negate a common perception that drugs like LSD put users directly in danger—a justification used in criminalization.

Most psychedelic drugs—including LSD and psilocybin—have been illegal in the United States since 1970, the year President Richard Nixon signed the Controlled Substances Act. The legislation classified LSD and mushrooms under Schedule 1, prohibiting not only their consumption and sale but also their use in medicine. Research into the therapeutic benefits of psychedelic drugs largely froze after decades of frenetic scientific investigation.

igziabeher - let jah be praised...,

fool |  Last year was another transformational year for the marijuana movement.

Beginning in 1996, California became the first state to legalize marijuana for medical purposes. Today, there are 23 states with legal medical marijuana programs in place, and there would have been 24 had Florida's vote not come up 2% short of what was required to change its constitution in 2014.

Additionally, we've witnessed four states progressively leading the way with the legalization of recreational marijuana. In 2012, Washington and Colorado legalized the drug for adult use, while Alaska and Oregon voters approved the measure just this past November.

How well are these dual legalizations working? That's been a difficult question to answer because getting accurate data isn't easy. However, a new report from the Colorado Marijuana Enforcement Division helps to shed some light on the success and failures of the marijuana market in Colorado following its first full year of sales.

Here are seven stunning figures that help sum up what recreational and medical marijuana legalization look like in Colorado.

this child needs marijuana

theatlantic |  Lucy Rhoden, a three-year-old girl from Virginia, suffers from a rare type of epilepsy known as Dravet Syndrome. The genetic disorder causes severe seizures and, eventually, developmental issues. Her family, as well as several advocates for epilepsy patients, believe that marijuana could be the last-ditch medication she needs. Filmmaker John Picklap considers the case for treatment in this short documentary. "My daughter is actually higher right now, on the drugs that I gave her legally, with her doctor's prescription, than she would be on medical cannabis," says Lucy's mother, Melissa Rhoden. 

According to the Washington Post, several states have passed legislation that allows for the use of marijuana oils to treat epilepsy—and last week, Virginia Gov. Terry McAuliffe signed a similar bill. In January, the American Academy of Pediatrics recommended that marijuana be re-classified as a Schedule II drug, which would acknowledge its medicinal value and allow the FDA to be involved in more research studies.

obnoxiously begging for the sovereign dominion to medicate as needed and as desired...,

Sunday, March 08, 2015

somebody puh-leeze pleasure this "intellectually corrupt negroe" catcher...,

From the following passages you appear to be disarmed, believing that this "Intellectually Corrupt Negro" has effectively confronted the machinations that produce "Street Piracy"

1)  The majority of my public experiences today are about addressing violence in black communities.
2)  I don't think outrage will do it at this point, but I respect the sincere feeling. And then there are pundits who write more than they read, and talk more than they listen, and prefer an easy creationism to a Google search.
I can take words of my young frat brothers whose FaceBook messages that I read intently, adopting both "Trayvon/Ferguson/ICan'tBreath" and "Obama's MyBrother'sKeeper" as a catch basin for their "Third Generation Civil Rights Latch Key Kid" struggle motion.

When I see Ta-Nehisi Coats, "The Root", "The Grio", "Ebony", "Essence" and MSNBC riding on the same trail of "Scooby Snacks", having found their raison d'etre in the "Obama Era", beyond their presence in the virtual fort that guards the "Obama White House" as the "Embassy Of The Black Community" in Washington DC.   (You know it was "built by SLAVES", right?)

You give a "Complete" to this man who told us a few weeks ago that FERGUSON has its legacy in JIM CROW and that any "mal-acting Negro" on the streets of Ferguson was "MADE THIS WAY" by "American Racism".

This was a follow up to his "Chicago Reparations" piece in "The Atlantic" which got him booked on various Progressive outlets.   Again, we were told that the once pristine bungalows seen in "A Raisin In The Sun" became today's KILLING FIELDS FOR NEGROES - because RACIST housing policies sculpted the color composition of Chicago and other cities like it.

Pleasure me, MB  Tell me ONE TIME that Ta-Nehisi Coates has EVER told the "Americanized Negro" that the over-insertation of his HIS CONSCIOUSNESS into POLITICS poses a risk that leaves him vulnerable to accepting "CONFIDENCE MAN NARRATIVES" which INFERIORIZE the ability of Black people to erect a system of COMMUNITY GOVERNANCE INSTITUTIONS through which the "criminal element" (which he said was made that way by the theft of Black culture) would be made into WELL BALANCED MEN - are able to disarm the Black community from seeing its endemic responsibility to be the stewards of these young men?

With a man so intent on explaining away any and all culpability (akin to what Tim Wise does) - can you detail for us what Ta-Nehisi Coats have EVER TOLD THE NEGRO "WHAT HE MUST DO / STOP DOING in order to ATTAIN OUTCOMES, that are more in line with the jar of "Social Justice Unicorn Piss" that he is typically selling our people as their salvation?

it looks like that man is in charge of the country

Saturday, March 07, 2015

the machinery of galactus

theatlantic |  It must noted that the rhetoric "personal responsibility" enjoys not just currency among the white officials of Ferguson, but among many black people ("black-on-black crime!") who believe that white supremacy is a force with which one can negotiate. But white supremacyas evidenced in Fergusonis not ultimately interested in how responsible you are, nor how respectable you look. White supremacy is neither a misunderstanding nor a failure of manners. White supremacy is the machinery of Galactus which allows for the potential devouring of everything you own. White supremacy is the technology, patented in this enlightened era, to ensure that what is yours inevitably becomes mine.

This technology has proven highly effective throughout American history. In 1860 it meant the transformation of black bodies into more wealth than all the productive capacity of this country combined. In the 1930s it meant the erection of our modern middle class. In Ferguson, it meant funding nearly a quarter of the municipal budget:
The City has not yet made public the actual revenue collected that year, although budget documents forecasted lower revenue than 10 was budgeted. Nonetheless, for fiscal year 2015, the City’s budget anticipates fine and fee revenues to account for $3.09 million of a projected $13.26 million in general fund revenues...

In a February 2011 report requested by the City Council at a Financial Planning Session and drafted by Ferguson’s Finance Director with contributions from Chief Jackson, the Finance Director reported on “efforts to increase efficiencies and maximize collection” by the municipal court. The report included an extensive comparison of Ferguson’s fines to those of surrounding municipalities and noted with approval that Ferguson’s fines are “at or near the top of the list....” While the report stated that this recommendation was because of a “large volume of non-compliance,” the recommendation was in fact emphasized as one of several ways that the code enforcement system had been honed to produce more revenue.
The men and women behind this policy did not approach their effort to "produce more revenue" somberly, but lustily. As the fruits of plunder increased, Ferguson officials congratulated and backslapped each other:
In one March 2012 email, the Captain of the Patrol Division reported directly to the City Manager that court collections in February 2012 reached $235,000, and that this was the first month collections ever exceeded $200,000. The Captain noted that “[t]he [court clerk] girls have been swamped all day with a line of people paying off fines today. Since 9:30 this morning there hasn’t been less than 5 people waiting in line and for the last three hours 10 to 15 people at all times.” The City Manager enthusiastically reported the Captain’s email to the City Council and congratulated both police department and court staff on their “great work.”
It is a wonder they did not hand out bonuses. Perhaps they did. The bonus of being white in Ferguson meant nigh-immunity from plunder. The bane of being black in Ferguson meant nigh-inevitable subjugation under plunder. Plunder is neither abstract nor theoretical. Plunder injures, maims, and destroys. Indeed the very same people who were calling on protestors to remain nonviolent were, every hour, partner to brutality committed under the color of law:
We spoke with one African-American man who, in August 2014, had an argument in his apartment to which FPD officers responded, and was immediately pulled out of the apartment by force. After telling the officer, “you don’t have a reason to lock me up,” he claims the officer responded: “N*****, I can find something to lock you up on.” When the man responded, “good luck with that,” the officer slammed his face into the wall, and after the man fell to the floor, the officer said, “don’t pass out motherf****r because I’m not carrying you to my car.”
The residents of Ferguson do not have a police problem. They have a gang problem. That the gang operates under legal sanction makes no difference. It is a gang nonetheless, and there is no other word to describe an armed band of collection agents.

gangsters of st. louis...,

slate |  This week the Department of Justice released a highly critical report about Ferguson, Missouri’s criminal justice system, accusing police and officials of perpetrating a racially biased regime that, among other issues, imposes abusive, excessive punishments and fines for trifling violations like jaywalking. The DOJ report was foreshadowed in September 2014 by Washington Post writer Radley Balko’s shocking investigation of the St. Louis County municipal court system, which seems to be a shakedown racket aimed at enriching everyone involved at the expense of regular citizens. Balko highlighted an individual named Ronald Brockmeyer who has made a lucrative living in the traffic-ticket game:
According to a recent white paper published by the ArchCity Defenders, the chief prosecutor in Florissant Municipal Court makes $56,060 per year. It’s a position that requires him to work 12 court sessions per year, at about three hours per session. The Florissant prosecutor is Ronald Brockmeyer, who also has a criminal defense practice in St. Charles County, and who is also the chief municipal prosecutor for the towns of Vinita Park and Dellwood. He is also the judge—yes, the judge—in both Ferguson and Breckenridge Hills.
(As I wrote at the time, Brockmeyer’s compensation as a prosecutor works out to about $1,500 an hour, which is what you’d make if you worked 40 hours a week at a salary of $3 million per year.)
As it happens, Brockmeyer is now back in the news thanks to the DOJ report, which criticized his work in Ferguson—and thanks to the Guardian, which reveals that Brockmeyer, who, again, makes his living by harshly enforcing the most trivial civic rules, owes the United States government some $170,000 in unpaid taxes.

bet not ever question a pro-Israel Hillel member's impartiality on divestment from apartheid Israel

NYTimes |  Yet some Jewish leaders here questioned whether Mr. Block or the students appreciated the meaning of the event. John L. Rosove, the senior rabbi at Temple Israel of Hollywood, said the incident “reflects something deeper, more troubling, insidious, and pervasive not just at U.C.L.A. but on college campuses nationwide.”

“I am not one who sees anti-Semites lurking under every bed,” he wrote in his blog. “I am not a fear-monger. I do not believe that all criticism of Jews or the state of Israel is necessarily anti-Semitic.”

“Yet,” he said, “our inability to use the term anti-Semitism when it concerns Jews, when we don’t have a problem calling other forms of ethnic and religious bigotry what it is, raises disturbing questions about prevalent attitudes towards Jews, Judaism, Zionism, and the state of Israel.”

The president of the student council, Avinoam Baral, who had nominated Ms. Beyda, appeared stunned at the turn the questioning took at the session and sought at first to rule Ms. Roth’s question out of order. “I don’t feel that’s an appropriate question,” he said.
In an interview, Mr. Baral, who is Jewish, said he “related personally to what Rachel was going through.”

“It’s very problematic to me that students would feel that it was appropriate to ask that kind of questions, especially given the long cultural history of Jews,” he said. “We’ve been questioned all of our history: Are Jews loyal citizens? Don’t they have divided loyalties? All of these anti-Semitic tropes.”

He called Ms. Beyda a “stand-out applicant,” with strong grades, interest and experience in the law. The students who voted against her also praised her credentials, but kept returning to questions about whether she could set aside her religious affiliation when ruling on issues before the council.
Rachel Frenklak, who is Ms. Beyda’s roommate and president of the sorority, said she had gone to the meeting expecting an enjoyable night watching her “best friend” get approved, and was stunned at what she witnessed.

“I swear the word Israel was not said once,” she said Thursday. “It was all about Jewish affiliations. It didn’t leave any doubt that what this is, is anti-Semitism. There has to be recognition that there is anti-Semitism on the campus, and it manifested itself first with the anti-Israel stuff.”

what is hillel?

wikipedia |  As Hillel is funded by donations, it is usually free for an interested student to participate in their activities. However, as set by International Hillel Policy, there are restrictions on the services, topics of discussions, and events that can be held.[14] These restrictions focus mainly on Zionism, where Hillel takes a firm stance in not promoting certain types of views on Israel, such as the Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions campaign.[15] Hillel's strategy, as redefined in 2006, explicitly set a goal to "inspire every Jewish student to make an enduring commitment to Jewish life". To be effective, Hillel activities vary from campus to campus, with an emphasis on responding to the needs of participating students. To reach a larger audience, campus Hillel foundations struggle to create a pluralistic, inclusive environment that still remains distinctively Jewish. To do so, the national foundation organizes trips to Israel,[16] places service fellows at the campus foundations,[17] creates a guide to Jewish student life,[18] and leads advocacy work on Jewish and Israeli issues,[19] as well as providing some financial support to its campus foundations.

Hillel chapters regularly offer Shabbat services. Hillel is also dedicated to social activism, fundraising, and philanthropy for charitable causes. These activities are usually led on the local campus level, but many campuses participate in alternative spring break trips dedicated to service, a Yom Kippur Fast Action Campaign, and the Oxfam Fair Trade Coffee Campaign, as well as more traditional local service projects at soup kitchens, homeless shelters, and Jewish community organizations.

Social justice
Since 2010, Hillel's campus initiative at the University of Washington, Freedom Shabbat, has highlighted the problem of modern-day slavery during the holiday of Passover, a time when Jews remember their escape from slavery in Egypt.[20][21]

Hillel also organizes alternative break trips for students across the globe, where students participate in short-term service projects dealing with a range of issues, from poverty to food justice. They have partnered with the non-profit organization City Year to create civic engagement spring breaks for students.[22]

what are goyim and shiksas?

haaretz |  Among all the rabbinical racism that’s been surfacing, among all the events of the national memorial days that made Israel look more like a racially exclusive society than a state, even more telling than the chilling preference for placing a flag only on the grave of a certified kosher fallen soldier was an event of extreme significance that got little public attention. 

It was Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s announcement saluting a Torah giant, teacher and arbiter of Jewish law. We’re talking about Rabbi Yaakov Yosef, who was arrested for giving a letter of approbation to the work “The King’s Torah − Laws of Killing Non-Jews.” 

As a rabbi, Yosef contributed to and expanded the body of racist halakha ‏(Jewish religious law‏) against Arabs, “goyim” and homosexuals until his recent death. But all this is dwarfed by the simple and unnerving fact that the prime minister of Israel referred to one of the people behind the “The Laws of Killing Non-Jews” as a posek gadol − a great halakhic arbiter. 

No Western leader could be caught doing something comparable, even if he’d wanted to. No one in the West publishes books on “the laws of killing Jews,” or on “the laws of killing non-Christians,” or on “the laws of killing non-whites.” They would be marched straight to prison, and anyone saluting them as “great arbiters” would be booted out of public service. 

Even in the most extreme Islamic countries you won’t find an exact parallel. There are no books there on “the laws of killing Jews,” or even on “the laws of killing those not of the Islamic race.” Yes, there have been religious rulings favoring suicide terrorists and the killing of Zionists. But never a blanket permit for racist murder. 

Netanyahu’s declaration, which is much more serious even than his whispered confidence to an old rabbi that “the left has forgotten what it means to be a Jew,” was in essence the zenith, or perhaps the basis, for what has become the long duration of Holocaust-memorial-independence ceremonies, which do everything to eradicate the most important half of our founding principle of “never again.”

Friday, March 06, 2015

left behind...,

guardian |  As science progresses the upgrades that become available will increasingly widen the gap between rich and poor. Research on implantable devices called brain-computer interfaces (BCIs) are in trials to help disabled people move their defunct limbs or robotic prosthetics.

More advanced devices could link people's brains directly to the internet, giving them vast and faithful memory storage, and seamless access to information, even if that does include endless footage of cats in hats.

Work is ongoing into BCIs that connect many brains at once, allowing animals to cooperate by accessesing each others' brain power - work which raises deep questions about the future meaning of identity.

Genetic engineering will be more disruptive still. A new genome editing procedure called Crispr has given scientists their first real hope of making safe, precise changes to the human genome. They have already used it to correct cells with genetic faults that cause cataracts and cystic fibrosis. Similar therapies might allow improvements to human performance.

Western history has made many of today's researchers flinch at studies into the genetic basis of intelligence. But the Beijing Genomics Institute, the world's largest genomics research centre, has taken on the job . If the project bears fruit, it might drive attempts to boost human intelligence by genetically modifying embryos.

George Church, a geneticist at Harvard University, suggests another radical possibility. He has developed tools that can scramble the genetic code leaving it functional but unrecognisable to invading viruses. His first goal is to engineer a bacterium that is resistant to viral infection. But he does not dimiss the possibility of changing human DNA too – leading to a biologically new kind of human.

"In the 21st century, there is a real possibility of creating biological castes, with real biological differences between rich and poor," said Harari. "The end result could be speciation. We're used to being the only human species around, but there is no law of nature that says there can only be one species of human. With this kind of upgrading treatment we could have, in the not too distant future, more than one human species on Earth again."

as we harvest ever more genomes, one fact remains unshakeable...,

guardian |  Genetics has a blighted past with regards to race. Even today, important figures from its history – notably James Watson, co-discoverer of the double helix – express unsupportable racist views. The irony is that while Galton spawned a field with the intention of revealing essential racial differences between the peoples of the Earth, his legacy – human genetics – has shown he was wrong. Most modern geneticists are much less like Galton and more like Darwin. A dreadful book published last year by former New York Times science writer Nicholas Wade espoused views about racial differences seemingly backed by genetics. As with Watson, the reaction from geneticists was uniformly dismissive, that he had failed to understand the field, and misrepresented their work.

We now know that the way we talk about race has no scientific validity. There is no genetic basis that corresponds with any particular group of people, no essentialist DNA for black people or white people or anyone. This is not a hippy ideal, it’s a fact. There are genetic characteristics that associate with certain populations, but none of these is exclusive, nor correspond uniquely with any one group that might fit a racial epithet. Regional adaptations are real, but these tend to express difference within so-called races, not between them. Sickle-cell anaemia affects people of all skin colours because it has evolved where malaria is common. Tibetans are genetically adapted to high altitude, rendering Chinese residents of Beijing more similar to Europeans than their superficially similar neighbours. Tay-Sachs disease, once thought to be a “Jewish disease”, is as common in French Canadians and Cajuns. And so it goes on.

We harvest thousands of human genomes every week. Last month, the UK launched the 100,000 Genomes project to identify genetic bases for many diseases, but within that booty we will also find more of the secret history of our species, our DNA mixed and remixed through endless sex and continuous migration. We are too horny and mobile to have stuck to our own kind for very long.
Race doesn’t exist, racism does. But we can now confine it to opinions and not pretend that there might be any scientific validity in bigotry.

is there such a thing as dietary racism?

prisonplanet |  An article featured in the left-leaning news outlet Mother Jones this week declares the act of eating three meals a day to be racist.

In a piece entitled, “Why You Should Stop Eating Breakfast, Lunch, and Dinner,” writer Kiera Butler asserts that strict adherence to mealtimes is not only “anti-science,” but “racist” as well.

“When European settlers got to America, they also imported their meal habits,” Butler says. “They observed that the eating schedule of the native tribes was less rigid—the volume and timing of their eating varied with the seasons.”

“Sometimes, when food was scarce, they fasted. The Europeans took this as ‘evidence that natives were uncivilized…’ So fascinated were Europeans with tribes’ eating patterns… that they actually watched Native Americans eat ‘as a form of entertainment.’”

Butler’s article goes on to chronicle the rising prevalence of meal schedules and their dominance in modern Western culture, insinuating that the tradition’s white European roots make the very practice inherently racist.

“Dogmatic adherence to mealtimes is anti-science, racist, and might actually be making you sick,” Butler writes.

While such absurd claims are often praised by hoards of “social justice warriors” scouring the depths of the Internet, commenters of the article were quick to reject the daft declaration.

“Add ‘eating’ to the list of ‘everything is racist…’” the article’s top comment states.

“I never realized that oatmeal was racist. I feel so ashamed!” another joked.

The obsession by some to label everything as racist is so pervasive that focusing merely on the topic of food can yield countless similar stories.  Fist tap Big Don.

kashrut law

wikipedia |  Kosher foods are those that conform to the regulations of kashrut (Jewish dietary law). Food that may be consumed according to halakha(Jewish law) is termed kosher in English, from the Ashkenazi pronunciation of the Hebrew term kashér (כָּשֵׁר), meaning "fit" (in this context, fit for consumption). Food that is not in accordance with Jewish law is called treif (Yiddish: טרײף or treyf, derived from Hebrew טְרֵפָה trāfáh) meaning "torn."
A list of some kosher foods are found in the books of Leviticus 11:1-47 and Deuteronomy 14: 3-20, as are also certain kosher rules. Reasons for food not being kosher include the presence of ingredients derived from nonkosher animals or from kosher animals that were not slaughtered in a ritually proper manner, a mixture of meat and milk, wine and grape juice (or their derivatives) produced without supervision, the use of produce from Israel that has not been tithed, or the use of non-kosher cooking utensils and machinery. Every law of kashrut, according to all Rabbinic authorities of the ages in a rare agreement, makes the assertion that the laws can be broken when human life is at stake. Among the dozens of sources for the laws of pikuach nefesh (the Jewish term for saving any life) are the multiple discussions in the Talmud, for instance B. Yoma 83a, "We have agreed in the case of saving a soul he may be given [by a doctor in this case] to eat even unclean things, until his eyes are lightened from death".

Thursday, March 05, 2015

the real revelation - until Kerry, none of these dirty birds have used state.gov for a long time now...,

WaPo |  Earnest said the administration would have to rely on Clinton’s assurances that she met the fallback requirement of sending along the pertinent e-mails to be archived.

In Clinton’s case, that happened only after the State Department requested records from her and other former secretaries last fall, around the time the records law was updated.

About 300 of Clinton’s recovered e-mails were turned over to a congressional committee investigating the 2012 deaths of four Americans at U.S. facilities in Benghazi, Libya. The chairman of that panel, Rep. Trey Gowdy (R-S.C.), said Tuesday that the former secretary of state used multiple personal accounts.

“You do not need a law degree to have an understanding of how troubling this is,” Gowdy told reporters at a news conference. “One should also be concerned about the national security implications of former secretary Clinton using exclusively personal e-mail accounts for the conducting of official U.S. foreign policy.”

But Clinton spokesman Nick Merrill said that “both the letter and spirit of the rules permitted State Department officials to use nongovernment e-mail, as long as appropriate records were preserved.” He noted that the current secretary of state, John F. Kerry, is the first one to have an official e-mail account.

Aides to Clinton declined to explain why she did not set up a State Department e-mail account. Clinton did not address the e-mail controversy during a political speech in Washington on Tuesday night.

By the time she came to the department, in 2009, the practice of high government officials conducting government business using personal e-mail accounts had become controversial. Democrats were intensely critical of George W. Bush administration officials, including top political strategist Karl Rove, who used an account registered by the Republican National Committee for e-mails sent from the White House.

bank on bill: keeping cashflows, sidechicks, and high-drama straight for generations....,

wired |  For a secretary of state, running your own email server might be a clever—if controversial—way to keep your conversations hidden from journalists and their pesky Freedom of Information Act requests. But ask a few security experts, and the consensus is that it’s not a very smart way to keep those conversations hidden from hackers.

On Monday, the New York Times revealed that former secretary of state and future presidential candidate Hillary Clinton used a private email account rather than her official State.gov email address while serving in the State Department. And this was no Gmail or Yahoo! Mail account: On Wednesday the AP reported that Clinton actually ran a private mail server in her home during her entire tenure leading the State Department, hosting her email at the domain Clintonemail.com.

Much of the criticism of that in-house email strategy has centered on its violation of the federal government’s record-keeping and transparency rules. But as the controversy continues to swirl, the security community is focused on a different issue: the possibility that an unofficial, unprotected server held the communications of America’s top foreign affairs official for four years, leaving all of it potentially vulnerable to state-sponsored hackers.

“Although the American people didn’t know about this, it’s almost certain that foreign intelligence agencies did, just as the NSA knows which Indian and Spanish officials use Gmail and Yahoo accounts,” says Chris Soghoian, the lead technologist for the American Civil Liberties Union. “She’s not the first official to use private email and not the last. But there are serious security issue associated with these kinds of services…When you build your house outside the security fence, you’re on your own, and that’s what seems to have happened here.”

The most obvious security issue with Clinton running her own email server, says Soghoian, is the lack of manpower overseeing it compared with the State Department’s official email system. The federal agency’s own IT security team monitors State Department servers for possible vulnerabilities and breaches, and those computers fall under the NSA’s protection, too. Since 2008, for instance, the so-called Einstein project has functioned as an umbrella intrusion-detection system for more than a dozen federal agencies; Though it’s run by the Department of Homeland Security, it uses NSA data and vulnerability-detection methods.

Clinton’s email wouldn’t have the benefit of any of that expensive government security.

how y'all know dollar-dollar bill ain't set up a bulletproof paper-stacking messaging architecture in the basement?

dailymail |  'On the surface, the Hillary email situation does not look good,' he said, but we should wait to hear her explanation before passing judgment.'

'If it is an adequate explanation, after careful evaluation, it should be put to rest; and if it is not adequate, further investigation is warranted to determine if any laws have been violated.'

Reince Priebus, the chairman of the Republican National Committee, wondered aloud on Twitter if the email arrangement was in place so Clinton 'could conduct diplomacy and fundraising at the same time.'

Priebus was taking a swipe about a separate controversy involving the Bill, Hillary and Chelsea Clinton Foundation, which admitted last month that it had accepted millions of dollars in donations from foreign countries while Clinton ran the State Department.

That violated an ethics agreement with the U.S. government.

The Clintons' family philanthropy had promised to stop cashing checks from foreign governments with which it had not previously done business. But in 2010 it took $500,000 in 2010 from Algeria – a country that was lobbying State at the same time – without asking the federal government for permission.

Reached Monday night, former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush's spokeswoman Kristy Campbell told Daily Mail Online that 'Hillary Clinton should release her emails.'

'Hopefully she hasn't already destroyed them. Governor Bush believes transparency is a critical part of public service and of governing.'

need to get office 365 in the cloud and let new delhi handle exchange security...,

newsfactor |  Last November, the State Department announced it would be performing "maintenance" on its non-classified e-mail systems during regularly scheduled system downtime. However, The Associated Press later revealed that the "maintenance" actually consisted of unplanned security enhancements to address what State Department officials conceded were signs of "suspicious activity." 

Underscoring the severity of the intrusion, the State Department shut down its unclassified e-mail system around the entire world. State Department officials told media outlets at the time that they were using their personal Gmail accounts in order to get their work done. 

Although the State Department predicted that the issue would be resolved within 48 to 72 hours, the intrusion has clearly lingered. Still unresolved is the amount of material that might have been seized by the hackers, or whether the hackers were able to use the unclassified e-mail system as a staging area for attacks on more sensitive computer networks.
Global Hack Attacks 

The hacker intrusions into the State Department unclassified e-mail system were actually first detected in October 2014, at about the same time that hackers attempted to gain entry to computer systems at the White House, the National Weather Service, and the U.S. Post Office. 

No specific nation or group has been identified as the alleged source of the attacks, although there was speculation that the White House was targeted by Russian hackers and the other government agencies by Chinese intruders. In its report Thursday, the Journal cited unnamed sources who believed the State Department intrusions also originated from Russia. 

One aspect of the attacks that has left U.S. investigators somewhat puzzled, however, is the fact that they have been able to detect the intrusions at all. Their assumption, officials told the Journal, is that Russian computer experts are at least as good as those working for the United States, and that they are capable of avoiding this type of routine detection. The fact that the attacks were so readily identifiable suggests either that Russia was not using its starters, or that the country was trying to send the U.S. some sort of message. 

One thing that is relatively clear is how the initial infection occurred. Investigators pin the blame on an unnamed State Department official who apparently fell for a classic phishing attack. The hackers created an e-mail message purporting to be about departmental issues, and included a link to malicious software. All it took was for a single recipient to click on the link, and the infection was under way. 

As numerous computer security experts have observed over the years, it is vastly easier to play offense than defense in the cyber realm. Put another way, a hacker only has to get lucky once; network defenders have to be perfect all the time.

Wednesday, March 04, 2015

americans don't care about prison rape or what happens when the problem bleeds out from behind bars...,

thenation |  Rape is part of forcing prisoners to change, it’s what makes learning your lesson in prison scary, and scary prisons are what keep bad people in line.

Beyond Scared Straight is A&E’s reality show based on at-risk-teen behavioral modification. The goal is to expose youths who are at risk for incarceration to what prison life is like in order to deter future delinquency. In a 2011 episode, a former inmate forces a 14-year-old to pat Kool-Aid powder onto his lips and then lunges forward to kiss him, intimating in frantic yelling that this routine would conclude in his sexual exploitation in prison. Interviewed at the end of the episode, the 14-year-old admits he was made uncomfortable by the advance, but still claims the former inmate “doesn’t own [him]”; at the Huffington Post, this was tsk-tsked as evidence “he still doesn’t completely get what a different world prison can be.” Sexual exploitation in prison has its uses, in other words, and one of them is instructive.

Treatment of prison rape in ordinary television is often, with a few exceptions, bizarrely comical. Law & Order: Special Victims Unit, the iteration of the Law & Order franchise that made its fortune on rape theater, deploys the trope of prison rape with depressing regularity. In a surreal episode involving wild-animal smuggling, Christopher Meloni and Ice-T menace a wannabe hip-hop mogul during his interrogation by rolling dice and suggesting his cellmates will adopt the same procedure to determine the course of his rape. The suspect relents. The same scenario pans out in so many procedural cop dramas, with all due allusions to cellies named Bubba and pretty-boys-like-you. Even The X-Files had a go in a glibly comedic episode, wherein Detective Scully is urged to perjure herself lest she wind up with a Gertrude Stein–reading cellmate called “Large Marge.” The arrests of celebrities like Lindsay Lohan and Paris Hilton produce fantasies disguised as news. Fox News reported in 2010 that “lesbian prison gangs” were itching to get their hands on Lohan; whether the “report” was filed under “entertainment” because of the actress or the feverishly implied rape is unclear.

The logic perpetuated by ongoing ease with prison rape is that certain bad people in particular bad settings either deserve sexual assault or do not deserve protection from it. That prison simply is a site where rape occurs is given as a deterrent and, in the event that an offender is not deterred, implied to be what they had coming all along. But the notion that prisoners who are raped should have behaved better to be less deserving is the apotheosis of the “asking for it” or “had it coming” arguments so commonly employed to dismiss victims of rape in the free population. Some crimes are so egregiously heinous that knee-jerk, visceral reactions tend toward the violent, but when we codify primal impulse into popular consensus, we wind up in agreement that rape is sometimes an appropriate punishment. Hatred or indifference to people in prison, therefore, affirms a particularly poisonous view of rape itself: that it has its place in the order of things, especially where badly behaved people are concerned. So long as some 200,000 people are sexually violated in detention centers annually, rape will never really retreat into the realm of the unthinkable, no matter how many perpetrators we turn into victims.

illegal overseer violence in chicago as routine as traffic lights...,

guardian |  Chicagoans, particularly black and brown citizens, lament that as all too true – that being interrogated and abused, frequently without public notice or legal counsel, has transformed the denial of constitutional rights in their city into a kind of disturbing norm. 

Late last year, following decades of profound systematic abuse, institutional racism and the repeated denial of civil rights, Chicago citizens asked the United Nations to classify what their notoriously brutal police force does to them, in an American city, as a violation of international anti-torture statutes.

Contained within an appeal to the UN Committee Against Torture – the same watchdog that has looked into Guantánamo Bay and the police killing in Ferguson, Missouri – were a litany of tales describing highly damaging abuse and injustice, completely out of step with alleged crimes. One was the story of a 22-year-old black man, who was beaten so badly when Chicago police found him smoking marijuana that he awoke from consciousness in Cook County jail with “22 stitches in my tongue, two facial fractures, bruised ribs, scrapes all over my body … an orbital fracture, a nasal fracture”.

Late last week, after multiple Chicago lawyers came forward to the Guardian with allegations of suspects being interrogated without public notice or legal counsel at a warehouse known as Homan Square, more young black men from Chicago began telling their stories of being abused, off the books, inside the facility. 

“A monopoly and application of the use of illicit violence is the modus vivendi of the Chicago police department and of governance in Chicago,” Nesbitt said.
“Violence and the use of illicit violence versus people of color, particularly blacks and Latinos, is as routine in Chicago as traffic lights.”

overseer violence at all ends of the criminal just-us system...,

theroot |  On Monday President Barack Obama, surrounded by members of his President’s Task Force on 21st Century Policing—created in the wake of last year’s grand jury decisions in the police killings of Michael Brown and Eric Garner—announced policy recommendations to local law enforcement as a response to the outrage generated by a nationwide epidemic of police violence.

“We have a great opportunity,” said Obama, “coming out of some great conflict and tragedy, to really transform how we think about community-law-enforcement relations so that everybody feels safer and our law-enforcement officers feel, rather than being embattled, feel fully supported.
“We need to seize that opportunity,” he added.

The president’s words came one day after the New York Times reported on a pattern of systemic prisoner abuse at the Attica Correctional Facility in western New York. The story offered readers a glimpse into a world where a predominantly African-American inmate population is routinely brutalized by the prison’s mostly white staff of guards. One young black man, George Williams, received a beating in 2011 severe enough to break his legs and force the prison to send him to two different hospitals for treatment.

On Monday, the same day that Obama spoke of hope and promise for better understanding between law enforcement and the black community, the three guards charged with Williams’ brutal assault resigned (with their full pensions) in a misdemeanor plea deal that avoided jail time.

There is an important connection between the task force report and Attica. Attica, which became a metaphor for state repression following a 1971 prison rebellion that left 39 men (29 prisoners and 10 hostages) dead, reveals the breadth and depth of corruption in a criminal-justice system that requires fundamental transformation and not just mere reform. Reports of abuse in Attica are far from isolated events, as recent exposés on brutality at New York City’s Rikers Island prison attest.

We can no longer afford to ignore the fact that the pervasive culture of police brutality and the law-enforcement approach that produced the crisis in Ferguson, Mo., continues—at times even worsens—in our prison system. Those convicted of crimes, according to our system, have precious few rights that correctional facilities must respect, including the right to dignified and humane treatment.

Tuesday, March 03, 2015

"Iran is 3 to 5 years away from obtaining a nuclear weapon" - Benjamin Netanyahu, 1992

democraticleader |  “The unbreakable bonds between the United States and Israel are rooted in our shared values, our common ideals and mutual interests.  Ours is a deep and abiding friendship that will always reach beyond party. Americans stand shoulder to shoulder with the Israeli people.  The state of Israel stands as the greatest political achievement of the 20th century, and the United States will always have an unshakable commitment to Israel’s security.

“That is why, as one who values the U.S. – Israel relationship, and loves Israel, I was near tears throughout the Prime Minister’s speech – saddened by the insult to the intelligence of the United States as part of the P5 +1 nations, and saddened by the condescension toward our knowledge of the threat posed by Iran and our broader commitment to preventing nuclear proliferation.

in about half an hour, netanyahu is going to permanently overplay his phenomenally weak identity-politics hand...,

WaPo |  Nowadays, Marshall would be called a foreign-policy realist. He argued that the United States was risking its position and prestige in the Middle East just to placate a domestic lobby. He further insisted that the beneficiary of Truman’s Palestine policy would be the Soviet Union. To put it succinctly, Truman took the side of a tiny people with no oil against a plenteous people with lots of it.

Nothing much has changed since then. Israel now has some offshore energy, but it’s hardly an emerging Saudi Arabia. It still is loathed by its neighbors and, to complicate matters, it persists in a settlements policy that the United States opposes and much of the world abhors. Nonetheless, Americans by and large support Israel, and Washington, even under the supposedly cool Barack Obama, maintains a very special relationship with it. That, now, is in danger.

But the fault line in the U.S.-Israel relationship is hardly the current clash of personalities. Instead, it’s that the relationship is based mainly on affection. Americans like Israel. They like its democratic values and they like its spunky underdogness. Conservative Christians like Israel for reasons having to do with religious dogma but they, too, have come to admire it for its secular values. Still, none of this is based on self-interest — the underpinning of a successful foreign policy. In power politics, it’s usually not enough to be liked. A nation has to be considered essential. Israel may be beloved, but for American security, it is not essential.

The fact is that the United States does not need Israel. Our special relationship was not forged, as it was with Great Britain, in two world wars, not to mention a common language and, in significant respects, culture. It is based on warmth, emotion, shared values — and, not to be dismissed, a potent domestic lobby. But these ties are eroding. Support for Israel remains strong, but where once it was universal, it has increasingly drifted from left to right. In the liberal community, hostility toward Israel is unmistakable. Some of it is openly expressed, some of it merely whispered. 

Netanyahu has made matters worse. He has tethered Israel to the Republican Party. He was criticized for seeming to prefer Mitt Romney to Obama in 2012 and now has been enlisted to speak to Congress in a partisan effort by the Republican House speaker to embarrass the president. In doing so, he dissed an American president who happens to be black, hardly a way to shore up support in the African American community. (Many African American members of Congress say they will boycott the speech.) Netanyahu has started — or exacerbated — a process in which support for Israel may become not just a partisan issue, but a liberal-conservative one.

sophistry, spells, livestock management and the war of words...,

aljazeera |  According to conservatives, political correctness was hampering free speech, restricting behavior and hindering ostensibly objective policies such as school admissions. America the great, birthplace of freedom and liberty, taken hostage by college students armed with ideas from Franz Fanon, Judith Butler or Michel Foucault and a rising tide of people who insisted their identities and experiences be accurately described and taken into account. I was one of those college students and was rigorously trained to deconstruct everything from your coffee cup to your favorite television show to ensure you understand the full meaning of what you are seeing, hearing and saying.

Building off the civil rights movement and feminist activism of the late 1960s and early 1970s, identity politics as a field emerged in response to the unfair treatment that people from marginalized groups received in daily life and the ways in which American culture did not reflect or include our experience or realities. Identity politics emerged in academia as a response to history’s not including the plight of Native Americans, women or black people. It was a response to racism, sexism and homophobia that pushed back on the assumption that everyone was straight, white, cisgender and middle-class. Identity politics — also known as the fields of women’s studies, ethnic studies, African-American studies, queer studies and the like — paved the way for Edward Said to study colonization’s role in how the West understands “the Orient,” Kimberle Crenshaw to consider a politics of intersectionality and the powerlessness of women invisible to the legal system and Audre Lorde to insist that her words as a lesbian and woman of color mattered.

This group of supposed pc bullies paved the way for generations to feel as though they belong to something even if they don’t see themselves reflected in the world around them. The development of identity politics was a transformative moment: the beginning of a push to make the country a more inclusive, less hateful place for those who are different — the very values politicians of all stripes tout as a great characteristic of a great nation. It was also an important intervention to political dialogue and intellectual thought production and pushed academic institutions to be more thorough and rigorous in their assumptions, values and research. And it refuted the idea that there is an objective truth, as opposed to subjective realities, when it comes to telling stories about our lives.

But the rise of identity politics as an academic, political and cultural movement came with some baggage. A side effect of people feeling invisible for generations is anger. While identity politics pushed culture and politics, it also released decades of anger and animosity that previously went unexpressed in our finest educational institutions. This scared those who preferred to assume that everyone was happy in the good old days or believed that certain ideas were universally true. Of course, fear and anger had always been under the surface; it just finally had a chance to breath.

This isn’t to say that the sanctimonious overreliance on saying the right thing can’t be distracting and self-serving. Looking back at my college activism, I am slightly embarrassed by the emotional energy and time I spent judging other people’s politics and decisions. It was a natural part of growing into a political thinker and differentiating myself, but in other ways it distracted me from looking at broader issues outside my day-to-day life.

Monday, March 02, 2015

american denial

pbs |  Follow the story of Swedish researcher Gunnar Myrdal whose landmark 1944 study, An American Dilemma, probed deep into the United States' racial psyche. The film weaves a narrative that exposes some of the potential underlying causes of racial biases still rooted in America’s systems and institutions today. 

An intellectual social visionary who later won a Nobel Prize in economics, Myrdal first visited the Jim Crow South at the invitation of the Carnegie Corporation in 1938, where he was “shocked to the core by all the evils [he] saw.” With a team of scholars that included black political scientist Ralph Bunche, Myrdal wrote his massive 1,500-page investigation of race, now considered a classic.

An American Dilemma challenged the veracity of the American creed of equality, justice, and liberty for all. It argued that critically implicit in that creed — which Myrdal called America’s “state religion” — was a more shameful conflict: white Americans explained away the lack of opportunity for blacks by labeling them inferior. Myrdal argued that this view justified practices and policies that openly undermined and oppressed the lives of black citizens. Seventy years later, are we still a society living in this state of denial, in an era marked by the election of the nation’s first black president? 

American Denial sheds light on the unconscious political and moral world of modern Americans, using archival footage, newsreels, nightly news reports, and rare southern home movies from the ‘30s and ‘40s, as well as research footage, websites, and YouTube films showing psychological testing of racial attitudes. Exploring “stop-and-frisk” practices, the incarceration crisis, and racially-patterned poverty, the film features a wide array of historians, psychologists, and sociologists who offer expert insight and share their own personal, unsettling stories. The result is a unique and provocative film that challenges our assumptions about who we are and what we really believe.

the GOP would squeal like pigs under a gate if the Hon.Bro.Preznit treated them like they demand he treat Islam...,

slate |  On Feb. 6, Obama went to Indiana and lauded Dick Lugar, the state’s former Republican senator. The next day, in his weekly radio address, he repeated: “I’ll work with anyone, Republican or Democrat, who wants to get to ‘yes.’ … We should stop refighting old battles and start working together.” Even last Friday, in his speech to the Democratic National Committee, five of Obama’s nine references to Republicans were positive. “If Republicans are serious about taking on the specific challenges that face the middle class,” he pleaded, “we should welcome them.”

That’s how Obama treats his domestic adversaries. He doesn’t take the bait. He doesn’t define the whole opposition party by its worst elements. He rejects polarization. He emphasizes shared values. He reminds his own partisans that they, too, are sinners.

For Democrats, this can be exasperating. It’s especially exasperating when Republicans refuse to take responsibility for, or even disown, outbursts from their colleagues, such as Rep. Joe Wilson’s “You lie!” or Rudy Giuliani’s “I do not believe that the president loves America.” Rep. Darrell Issa, who as chairman of the House oversight committee has led investigations of the Obama administration, claims Giuliani didn’t deny that Obama loves America—“He said he didn't believe” Obama loves America. Gov. Bobby Jindal of Louisiana, a 2016 presidential hopeful, says of Giuliani’s remark: “If you are looking for someone to condemn the mayor, look elsewhere.” Gov. Mike Pence of Indiana backs up Giuliani’s insinuation that Obama favors the enemy over his own country: “[Giuliani] is understandably frustrated with a president who, as I said before, is fully willing to lecture the people of this country about the Crusades but is unwilling to call Islamic extremism for what it is.”

Please. If we’re going to start calling out religious and political groups for extremism, we could start at home with Republicans. Too many of them spew animus. Too many foment sectarianism. Too many sit by, or make excuses, as others appeal to tribalism. If Obama were to treat them the way they say he should treat Islam—holding the entire faith accountable for its ugliest followers—they’d squeal nonstop about slander and demagogy. They’re lucky that’s not his style.

Sunday, March 01, 2015

the root of extremism

nbcnews |  The city of Cleveland claims the death of 12-year-old Tamir Rice at the hands of a police officer and the "losses" suffered by his family were a result of the boy's and his family's own actions that day. The city's denial of any wrongdoing was filed Friday in response to a wrongful death lawsuit brought by lawyers for the Rice family last month. 

The city wrote that Tamir's injuries were caused by him failing to "exercise due care." In addition, the complaints brought on behalf of Tamir's sister and mother were also "directly caused by their own acts" — not the officers involved, the response said. 

Tamir was fatally shot on Nov. 22 by Cleveland rookie cop Timothy Loehmann, who with his partner, Frank Garmback, were called to a recreation center where Tamir was holding a pellet gun. Police responding to the scene initially believed the pellet gun, which did not have an orange tip identifying it as a replica, was real. Loehmann fired on Tamir within less than two seconds of arriving, surveillance footage shows, and the boy died in the hospital the next day. 

The Rice family filed an 8-page wrongful death suit against the two officers and the city of Cleveland in December. But after retaining a new legal team, including high-profile civil rights attorney Benjamin Crump, the family filed an amended 65-page suit against the same defendants, which brought at least 27 allegations against the city and the officers.

are whites unwittingly complicit in racism?

bostonglobe |  Is white racism a kind of toxic cloud that drifts over our country, invisible to many or most white-skinned citizens but terrifyingly visible to the black and brown-skinned? We may believe — with good reason — that we are not racists; but does our passivity or indifference to the racism of others make us their enablers? It is stunning to learn that hundreds of millions of dollars are paid out annually in court settlements to victims of police brutality or misconduct — and these millions are paid by taxpayers. In effect, unwittingly, yet not altogether innocently, we are all supporting police brutality and misconduct.
In the late 1990s, while I was being driven back home to Princeton from a literary event in New York City, a New Jersey state police vehicle stopped the car. It was not evident why; the driver had not been speeding or driving erratically, and there was nothing wrong with the Lincoln Town Car.

Two state troopers demanded that the (black) driver show them his driver’s license and the auto registration. They then ordered him to get out of the car. What I could hear of their interrogation was repeated questions: Where are you going? Where do you live? Whose car is this? 

No doubt accustomed to being harassed by white law enforcement, the driver answered the questions in a quiet and courteous voice. Yet the officers kept repeating the questions, as if they had some reason to suspect that the driver was lying. Seeing me in the back seat, they walked the driver away from the car, along the shoulder of the highway, and proceeded to interrogate him for what seemed like a very long time — 40 minutes? By this time I had called my husband on my cell phone and told him about the situation — “I don’t know when I will get home,” I remember telling him. 

I do remember opening the door of the limousine, thinking that I would stand outside, but one of the troopers yelled angrily at me: “Get back inside that car, lady!” 

Whatever they were saying to the black driver, however they might have been threatening him, they did not want a witness. Especially, they did not want a white woman witness.

How naive it seems to me now to have imagined that I might have been a more helpful witness to what was obviously, in retrospect, a flagrant example of police profiling. At the time, I did not even have a cell phone that could record anything; it was a very minimal phone, indeed. And I have to confess, what I felt when the trooper yelled at me was sheer visceral fear, dread — there was no way, there is no way, that a lone individual can stand up to law enforcement officers who are not only armed but, usually, physically domineering. Out on the Jersey Turnpike, in the dark, as traffic rushes past, no one can assert his or her rights to the police without inviting immediate retaliation.