Tuesday, April 25, 2017

THIS ONE IS GOING TO BE HARD TO CLEAN UP

by Bob Walsh

If the story being told is true, an inmate died last year in the Milwaukee County Jail of dehydration. He was (apparently) mentally ill and (allegedly) the water had been turned off in his cell for a week.

A jury is considering whether there is probable cause to charge one or more jail officials with abuse of the prisoner. (I admit I don't understand the procedure on this. Must be a local or state thing.)

Allegedly the prisoner, Terrill Thomas, was having some sort of "mental health crisis." He was being fed allegedly inedible "neutraloaf" meals and had the water in his cell shut off. It is unclear if he was provided drinking water or not. If he did in fact die of dehydration one would think not. Prisoners often have their water turned off if they flood their cells and are fed "neutaloaf" if they throw food, refuse to return their trays and utensils after eating or otherwise act like assholes.

In any event it is difficult to understand how the prisoner was not removed, forcibly if need be, and put in medical housing at some point along the line. As noted, I strongly suspect that someone is going to have his tit in a wringer over this one. Mere indeptitude isn't going to cover it.

ASSHOLE SUING FOR DAMAGES BASED ON HIS ASSHOLEISHNESS

by Bob Walsh

Jermaine Padilla is an asshole. He is a guest of the state and probably has legitimate mental health issues. He is still an asshole.

There are rules when you are in prison. Those rules are necessary for the safe, efficient running of the prison. They protect both the staff and the prisoners.

Back in 2012 staff wanted Padilla to come out of his cell. He didn't want to. So he was "extracted." Cell extractions have been videotaped for YEARS. The staff asks nicely pretty please will you come you. Then, eventually, a suit comes down and asks pretty please, come out of your cell. If you don't they go in and get you. It isn't pretty. The prisoner often plays up to the camera which he KNOWS is there and screams like a mashed cat.

Padilla's lawyer is suing the formerly great state of CA and is asking for punitive damages as well as compensatory damages, alleging that the state is liable for "malice and oppression" committed by the evil "prison guards" who extracted Padilla from his cell.

Padilla was, at the time, housed in the mental health crisis unit in the state prison at Corcoran. He had stopped taking his meds, and smeared himself with his own shit. At that time the mental health professionals determined it was necessary to get Padilla out of the cell. He refused. So they blasted the crap out of him with a shitload of pepper spray, then went in after him and strapped him down to a gurney. He was kept restrained for some time (like a day and a half). He was NOT transferred to DMH (Dept. of Mental Health), perhaps in part because of the onerous paperwork required, even though the department guidelines seem to indicate it should have been done.

The bottom line is that dealing with nutters is difficult. Dealing with dangerous nutters is difficult and dangerous. I would humbly suggest that Padilla's lawyer and the federal judging looking at this, as well as the jury, should come down to the mental health unit (IN UNIFORM AND NOT IN STREET CLOTHES) and check out the situation and how it really works.

Was Padilla mistreated? Damned if I know. I do know that dealing with nutters is far from as easy as the lawyers and the courts pretend it should be.

FITBIT GIVES WIFE KILLER MORE THAN BIT OF A FIT

Slain woman's Fitbit data cited in murder case against husband

CRIMESIDER | April 24, 2017

ELLINGTON, Conn. -- A 40-year-old Connecticut man is facing charges that he killed his wife in 2015, and police are reportedly citing data from the slain woman’s Fitbit in the case against him.

Richard Dabate was arrested this month and charged with murder, tampering with evidence and making a false statement in the fatal shooting of 39-year-old Connie Dabate on Dec. 23, 2015.

Authorities say Dabate told them a masked man had entered their Ellington home, shot his wife and tied him up before he burned the intruder with a torch. Investigators say he was found with an arm and leg zip-tied to a folding chair, and he had superficial knife wounds, according to the Hartford Courant.

But Connecticut State Police say data from Connie Dabate’s Fitbit, along with information from social media, cellphones, computers and the home’s alarm system, contradict Richard Dabate’s statements to police, the paper reports.

Police say there were no signs of a struggle in the home, nothing was stolen and a police dog only picked up Richard Dabate’s scent, reports the Courant, citing an arrest warrant. The warrant says Dabate had a pregnant girlfriend at the time of his wife’s killing and that he told his girlfriend he was getting a divorce.

Dabate allegedly told investigators his wife was unable to have another child, so the couple did some “untraditional things.” He said all three planned to co-parent the child, reports CBS affiliate WFSB. The couple had two children.

Police also say Dabate changed his story, put in a claim for his wife’s $475,000 life insurance policy and withdrew nearly $93,000 from an investment account in his wife’s name.

Dabate was released on bail last week. A judge ordered him to turn in his passport.

Dabate is due in court April 28. His lawyer told the Hartford Courant that his client maintains his innocence and had offered to turn himself in after an arrest warrant was issued.

NOOKIE IN SPACE?

Sex in Space? NASA Says No, but Pornhub Wants to Reach This Final Frontier

By Dianna Wray | Houston Press | April 21, 2017

It's the question everyone longs to know about the final frontier: Have astronauts ever had sex in space?

Officially, NASA denies any such thing and there are no official, confirmed, yes-they-definitely-got-it-on reports about anyone doing it in space. (The idea of space sex is so good, though, that it has inspired at least one hoax. Pierre Kohler, the author of The Last Mission, claimed that NASA had commissioned a study on sexual positions in space back in 2003, complete with special two-person sleeping bags to make getting together a bit easier in low-gravity situations. The claim was debunked, but that hasn't stopped people from continuing to be fascinated with the idea of getting it on in orbit.)

But as we get closer to making the dream of sending astronauts on the very long trip to Mars a reality, it's understandable that people are wondering if a little space love (whether of the personal kind or via a duo) has ever happened or is even that likely.

There's been gossipy excitement over this idea ever since the first woman went to space in 1982, but the odds are good that if it's ever happened the space sex was more about the novelty of nookie in space and less about the actual joy of it. Logistically, it doesn't seem like having sex in space would be that easy or terribly fun.

For one thing, there are tons of physiological changes that happen during spaceflight that could play a part in sex and (if things were really serious with the partner or if it was a really long trip) procreation. When you're in space you experience gravity changes, radiation, vibration, noise, isolation, disrupted circadian rhythms and a whole bunch of stress. All of this can make it difficult to actually get together and do the deed.

There's also the little question of gravity. Gravity helps blood flow rapidly to certain places on the body and without gravity, men may not be able to get erections and women may also not get quite as physically aroused by sex.

So yeah, even if they can do it, so to speak, it's not necessarily a terribly satisfying encounter.

The idea of human sexual activity in the weightlessness or extreme environments of outer space – sex in space – presents difficulties for the performance of most sexual activities because of Newton's third law. According to the law, if the couple remain attached, their movements will counter each other, which means their actions won't change velocity unless they are affected by another, unattached object. There could also be problems from drifting into other objects (which makes sense when you think about it) since if the couple have a combined velocity relative to other objects, collisions could occur.

So far, NASA isn't down with having formal space sex experiments to let us know how any of this is for sure, but Pornhub is definitely interested. The company in 2015 announced it intends to make a space sex film and opened up its efforts to crowd funding. You'd think that would have translated to porn in sex immediately being made, but Pornhub has collected only a fraction of the more than $3 million required to make the movie.

So for now, sex in space is going to have to continue to live where it does best, the popular imagination. Unless, of course, there are any astronauts out there with some fun stories to tell about how exactly they defied the problems of gravity and Newton's third law to get it on. In which case, we all definitely want to hear what they've got to say.

DONALD TRUMP JR. TAKES SON ON HUNTING TRIP IN NATIONAL ZOO

According to witnesses at the zoo’s Elephant Outpost, Donald Trump Jr. told his son to aim for a calf that had wandered away from its mother in search of a play partner

The Onion | April 19, 2017

WASHINGTON—In what he referred to as an important rite of passage for his 8-year-old son, Donald John III, Donald Trump Jr. took his eldest boy to the Smithsonian National Zoological Park for his first-ever hunting trip, sources said Wednesday.

The daylong excursion, during which father and son could be seen wearing matching khaki fatigues and safari hats, was reportedly an opportunity for Trump Jr. to introduce the young boy to hunting by showing him how to track a wild animal through a zoo exhibit, set up the perfect shot just outside a fenced enclosure, and, if possible, hit the target right between the eyes as it lies sleeping.

“That’s it, D.J.—steady the barrel along the edge of the guardrail, just like that,” Trump Jr. whispered, appearing to swell with pride as Donald John III crouched near an ice cream stand in the zoo’s Cheetah Conservation Station and took aim at a cub playing inside a small enclosure 10 feet below. “Be very quiet or you’ll spook him. Now, whenever you’re ready, just exhale slowly and squeeze the trigger.”

“Great shot, son!” Trump Jr. continued as three valets from the hunting party set down the Trumps’ gear and entered the cheetah habitat to field-dress the carcass. “Let’s keep this spot until the zookeeper comes to feed them. When that happens, they’ll all move out into the open and we’ll be able to get a few more.”

According to sources, Trump Jr. and his son crept quietly along the paved footpaths—staying low and occasionally ducking behind an information kiosk—in the hopes of remaining undetected as they approached their next targets, Wilma and Zora, the two American bison housed by the zoo. Both animals were reportedly lapping water from a trough and caught unaware, allowing the father-son duo to take each of them out with three quick shots to the head, use a bowie knife to cut off the horns for souvenirs, and then continue on their way to the picnic pavilion for hot dogs and sodas.

Arriving at the zoo’s bird sanctuary, the Trumps are said to have switched from big-game rifles to scatterguns, bringing down a dozen flamingos, five whooping cranes, and a pair of North Island brown kiwi as zoo employees and families in the nearby gift shop screamed and ran for cover.

“The key to hunting is biding your time, D.J.—wait until those sea lions are trapped between the tank wall and your line of fire so you can get a clear shot at them before they swim away,” said Trump Jr., peering through the scope of his rifle at the aquatic mammals sunning themselves on a concrete embankment. “Later, when we go inside the Great Ape House, you’re going to be tempted to take a shot right away, but you have to be patient.”

“Eventually an orangutan will come down from its tire swing to grab a piece of fruit,” he added. “When that happens—bam, you nail him!”

Reports confirmed the highlight of the expedition came when Trump Jr. took down the zoo’s giant panda Tian Tian with just two shots, the first bullet shattering the Plexiglas barrier and the second hitting the animal directly in the heart. The Trumps reportedly took the opportunity to pose with their prized trophy, each triumphantly placing a foot on the blood-drenched panda as a hired photographer captured the moment.

The jubilant father and son reportedly ended their day by honing their marksmanship at the Small Mammal House, picking off mongooses one by one as they poked their heads out of their burrows.

“D.J., I was very proud of you out there today,” a misty-eyed Trump Jr. said as he tousled his son’s hair and tenderly wiped a smear of giant anteater blood from the boy’s cheek. “Maybe someday, when you have a son of your own, you’ll take him to the zoo and kill something really great like a white rhino, or, who knows, maybe you’ll take him to an aquarium and bag a dolphin. Even I haven’t done that.”

At press time, having deemed a gazelle carcass too small to make a good wall mount, the Trumps had abandoned the dead animal near a lemonade cart to rot in the sun.

Monday, April 24, 2017

SUBSIDIZE THE ARTS AND HUMANITIES?

The Trump administration wants to defund the NEA, NEH and public broadcasting

By Howie Katz | Big Jolly Politics | April 23, 2017

Congress has just returned from one of its frequent breaks. The House is faced with passing a budget to avoid a damaging government shutdown. There are several contentious items that the Trump administration is pushing. One is the building of a wall along the Mexican border. Another is the defunding of subsidies for the arts and humanities.

The Trump administration wants to defund the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA) and the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) along with the Corporation for Public Broadcasting.

The defunding of NEA and NEH probably would not have been proposed were it not for the “Piss Christ” photograph and the “Tongues of Flame”.

In 1989, contemporary artist Andres Serrano exhibited his "Piss Christ" (Serrano's title) photograph of a crucifix submerged in a jar of Serrano's blood and urine. The exhibit was a deliberate attempt by the artist to offend members of the Christian faith. Serrano had received a $15,000 grant for his exhibit from the NEA.

In 1990, the "Tongues of Flame" exhibit by artist David Wojnarowicz consisted of several offensive depictions of Jesus Christ, including one of Jesus "mainlining" heroin by injecting a hypodermic needle into his arm. Wojnarowicz's exhibit was also funded by the NEA.

I am sure that even someone with half a brain can agree that funding such outrageous and offensive ‘art’ is a terrible waste of the taxpayers’ money. While those creeps Serrano and Wojnarowicz had every right to exhibit their anti-Christian smut, the NEA did not have to dole them the funds to do it. But is that any reason to defund the federal subsidies to the arts and humanities?

As for public broadcasting, conservatives are angry with the far-left slant some of its programs have taken on, and well theyshould be. But those leftie programs constitute only a small part of public broadcasting. For the most part the public radio and TV programs are very informative on a great variety of subjects.

The reasons given for defunding the NEA, NEH and public broadcasting is to help slash the federal deficit. Well and good. But is defunding the three programs really going to cut down on the deficit? Let’s look at the appropriations in the 2016 federal budget:

All appropriations except for the NEA, NEH and public broadcasting: $3.899 trillion

NEA: $148 million. That is 0.003 percent of the total spending.

NEH: $148 million. That is 0.003 percent of the total spending.

Corporation for Public Broadcasting: $445 million. That is 0.01 percent of the total spending.


So there you have it. Cutting the funding for the NEA, NEH and public broadcasting will have absolutely no effect on the federal deficit.

Because those programs do far more good than harm, I’m for continuing to subsidize them.

HOLY SMOKE!

10 pounds of pot wrongly sent from California to Pennsylvania pastor

Associated Press | April 22, 2017

YEADON, Pa. — Police are trying to determine who shipped 10 pounds of marijuana from California to a pastor in the Philadelphia suburbs.

Yeadon police tell WTXF-TV the drugs arrived Thursday, in bundles stuffed into a plastic bucket inside a cardboard box that was delivered by United Parcel Service.

The package was sent from Sacramento.

But the woman who received it is a church pastor who tells authorities it wasn't meant for her. Police believe someone else might have been instructed to watch for the package, but failed to pick it up.

Police Chief Donald Molineux says the pastor is "very upset and traumatized" and afraid someone might come to her home looking for the drugs.

Police are hoping surveillance video from a drop-off location will identify who shipped the package.