What’s the liberal spin on the New Black Panthers Voter Intimidation Case?

I”ve been trying to figure that out most of the day, since I noted that former Dept. of Justice employee J. Christian Adams would be testifying before the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights today.  That is, I noted it on Fox News’ website.  I regularly check CNN, then Fox (hate their site, plus I want to get as much as I can), during the workday.  CNN had no mention of the case, and a check in their archives indicated that it had not been mentioned at all this year. 

Is what Adams had to say important?  What do you think? 

J. Christian Adams, testifying Tuesday before the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights, said that “over and over and over again,” the department showed “hostility” toward those cases. He described the Black Panther case as one example of that — he defended the legitimacy of the suit and said his “blood boiled” when he heard a Justice official claim the case wasn’t solid. 

“It is false,” Adams said of the claim. 

“We abetted wrongdoing and abandoned law-abiding citizens,” he later testified. 

The department abandoned the New Black Panther case last year. It stemmed from an incident on Election Day in 2008 in Philadelphia, where members of the party were videotaped in front of a polling place, dressed in military-style uniforms and allegedly hurling racial slurs while one brandished a night stick. 

The Bush Justice Department brought the first case against three members of the group, accusing them in a civil complaint of violating the Voter Rights Act. The Obama administration initially pursued the case, winning a default judgment in federal court in April 2009 when the Black Panther members did not appear in court. But then the administration moved to dismiss the charges the following month after getting one of the New Black Panther members to agree to not carry a “deadly weapon” near a polling place until 2012. 

In a statement Tuesday, a Justice spokesman said the civil rights division determined “the facts and the law did not support pursuing claims” against the two other defendants and denied Adams’ allegations. 

“The department makes enforcement decisions based on the merits, not the race, gender or ethnicity of any party involved. We are committed to comprehensive and vigorous enforcement of both the civil and criminal provisions of the federal laws that prohibit voter intimidation,” the spokesman said. 

The Civil Rights Commission, which subpoenaed Adams, has been probing the incident since last year. Adams said he ignored department directives not to testify and eventually quit after he heard Assistant Attorney General Thomas Perez testify that there were concerns the Black Panther case was not supported by the facts.  

Adams has described the case as open-and-shut and said Tuesday that it was a “very low moment” to hear Perez make that claim. 

But he described the department’s hostility toward that and other cases involving black defendants as “pervasive.” Adams cited hostility in the department toward a 2007 voting rights case against a black official in Mississippi who was accused of trying to intimidate voters. Adams said that when the Black Panther case came up, he heard officials in the department say it was “no big deal” and “media-generated” and point to “Fox News ” as the source.  

But as the investigation unfolded, he said he discovered “indications” that the Black Panther Party was doing the “same thing” to supporters of former presidential candidate Hillary Clinton during the Democratic primary season in early 2008. He urged the commission to pursue testimony from other Justice officials to corroborate his story. 

It’s unclear how far the commission will get. The commissioners want to hear from Christopher Coates, the former chief of the Justice Department’s voting section, but the commission claims the Justice Department is blocking Coates from testifying about why the case was dropped. 

The Bush Justice Department brought the first case against three members of the group, accusing them in a civil complaint of violating the Voter Rights Act. The Obama administration initially pursued the case, winning a default judgment in federal court in April 2009 when the Black Panther members did not appear in court. But then the administration moved to dismiss the charges the following month after getting one of the New Black Panther members to agree to not carry a “deadly weapon” near a polling place until 2012. 

In a statement Tuesday, a Justice spokesman said the civil rights division determined “the facts and the law did not support pursuing claims” against the two other defendants and denied Adams’ allegations. 

“The department makes enforcement decisions based on the merits, not the race, gender or ethnicity of any party involved. We are committed to comprehensive and vigorous enforcement of both the civil and criminal provisions of the federal laws that prohibit voter intimidation,” the spokesman said. 

The Civil Rights Commission, which subpoenaed Adams, has been probing the incident since last year. Adams said he ignored department directives not to testify and eventually quit after he heard Assistant Attorney General Thomas Perez testify that there were concerns the Black Panther case was not supported by the facts. 

 

Adams has described the case as open-and-shut and said Tuesday that it was a “very low moment” to hear Perez make that claim. 

But he described the department’s hostility toward that and other cases involving black defendants as “pervasive.” Adams cited hostility in the department toward a 2007 voting rights case against a black official in Mississippi who was accused of trying to intimidate voters. Adams said that when the Black Panther case came up, he heard officials in the department say it was “no big deal” and “media-generated” and point to “Fox News ” as the source. 

 

But as the investigation unfolded, he said he discovered “indications” that the Black Panther Party was doing the “same thing” to supporters of former presidential candidate Hillary Clinton during the Democratic primary season in early 2008. He urged the commission to pursue testimony from other Justice officials to corroborate his story. 

It’s unclear how far the commission will get. The commissioners want to hear from Christopher Coates, the former chief of the Justice Department’s voting section, but the commission claims the Justice Department is blocking Coates from testifying about why the case was dropped.

I’ve got a few problems with this: First, I make a it a rule to be extremely sceptical when people speak out against former employers.  They almost always have a bias and unresolved issues against the employer.  That doesn’t mean they’re wrong, necessarily; they’re likely to be the only ones who can show problems where they exist, but it means that I’m looking for other support.  Second, I don’t trust Fox News.  Or rather, I’m not any more willing to put my full trust in Fox News any more than I would any other news network.  “Trust, but verify” as Reagan would say.  I know what some people think when they hear “Fox News,” so I want to be sure that I’ve gotten independent support.  I’ve never had a problem before.  Third, I simply don’t think I believe that the Justice Department in my own country could be so blatantly, unabashedly, corrupt and racist.  I realize that Holder hasn’t exactly been politically correct about race in the past, but I still can’t believe that things are this bad.  The voter intimidation case was air tight; the man was video-taped brandishing a weapon.  Why does the Justice Department think that this is OK? 

And yet, I have not heard any explanation from the DOJ.  Adams’ accusations, if there is even a chance they are true, are surely more important than whatever the hell Lindsay Lohan is doing these days (which got three stories today, as well as a breaking news alert) or a basketball player’s Twitter account.  I’d say it’s a lot more important than the World Cup, which has been front paged most of the day.  And yet, nothing, no explanation, no cover up, no counter-story.  I could not find anything about this story on any other non-conservative media sites as well.  I’m willing to consider an explanation, if only one is offered. 

Presidents of the United States are Just Like Us!

In case you’ve ever wondered what it looks like whan I walk my dog, it’s pretty much like this:

Just replace the tall, athletic guy with an adorable 112 pound redhead who couldn’t shoot a basket to save her life.  Oh, and add a few more pounds to (and remove a good bit of the pretentiousness from) the dog.  And assume that the dog’s owners don’t have a full-time staff who probably take the dog on regular walks and train him well. Otherwise, we could be twins.

(In case you’re not quite as cultured as me, the title there (and here) is a reference to that monumental publication “Us Weekly,” which has a regular series titled “Celebrities are Just Like Us” (parodied here), which involves squeeing with delight over pictures of celebrities doing things like buying coffee or tying their shoes.  I had a roommate who read it, OK?)

Hugo Chavez is a Dictator

Lover of dictators (like Hugo Chavez, the dictator) Sean Penn wants there to be a law that would put people in jail if they called Dictator Hugo Chavez a dictator, which he is. 
 
Just enjoying my free speech rights while they last. 

Breast-possesser Wins Oscar

This article from NewsBlaze is basically a summary of the Oscars, but the headline caught my attention: “Kathryn Bigelow Advances Achievement of Women with Hurt Locker”

Now, to be fair, I’m glad that Hurt Locker got a lot of good attention.  I personally haven’t been to the movies since Sweeney Todd was in theaters (what can I say, I’ve got a thing for offbeat, uber-violent musicals.  And Johnny Depp*.  I’m not asking you to understand.)  But I’ve heard pretty good things about Hurt Locker.  If I wanted to see a movie, maybe I’d consider that one.  (OK, I do really want to see Alice in Wonderland, but we’re getting off track.) 

It’s just that I want the best director to win; not the best woman.  Was the academy swayed by the urge to pick the first woman winner?  I guess we’ll never know whether Ms. Bigelow legitimately earned this award. 

* It’s not that I find him attractive; I don’t. Far too pretty for my tastes.  I just like him.  Again, not asking you to understand.

What in the bloody hell happened to Jim Carry?!?!

Seen on this article about his wife’s anti-vaccine work:

People Jenny  McCarthy

OK, the vaccine/autism angle is really important, controversial, etc.  But good god, man!  Why does he look like that?

My one and post on the Tiger Woods event

With regards to the Tiger Woods story that is, at least based on my impression of coverage on the major cable news networks, about twice as important as the tragic and disturbing police massacre that occurred over the weekend and at least four times as important as the president’s plans for Afghanistan, I tend to agree with Neal Boortz, who asserted today that he would not be discussing it on the grounds that it is a private matter and doesn’t involve us. 

But, I keep hearing the plaintive cries of double-standard-ism, and I’d like to offer a contrary view.

The oft-repeated argument is that he is, by virtue of his fame and wealth, getting special treatment in that the police allow him to put off discussing the accident with them over and over, something they would never do for you or me. 

But, let’s look at it from a different angle.  No one was seriously injured, the property damage appears to be limited to that owned by the Woods’, and obviously they’re good for it.  No one appears to be in danger, or at least, if she was the cause of his injuries, he appears to be able to take care of himself (big, strong athlete, not financially dependant on her, etc.)

Now, I’m no expert in police procedure, so I could be completely wrong here, but it seems to me that, were this not national news, the police would not care.  Even if it is a domestic assault situation, he’s made it clear that he doesn’t wish to pursue charges, and unless it starts becoming a regular event, it seems like that should be left alone.  I’m going to guess that, if this had been Joe or Jane Six-Pack, the police would have showed up to make sure everything was OK, filed a report, and made a half-hearted attempt at best at any follow-up.

“Ben Stiller can stab a Medal of Honor winner (NOTE: Stab but not kill. He’s not that good.)”

Ace of Spades is speculating on what crimes celebrities can get away with committing, based on their artistic contributions.