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Thursday, November 2, 2017

When the President actually doesn't know what he is talking about

Yesterday President Donald Trump said:

1) "We need quick justice and we need strong justice -- much quicker and much stronger than we have right now. Because what we have right now is a joke and it's a laughingstock. And no wonder so much of this stuff takes place."

2) "We also have to come up with punishment that's far quicker and far greater than the punishment these animals are getting right now. They'll go through court for years. And at the end, they'll be -- who knows what happens."

What is the contradiction? Can you find it?

And then, there is this: The evidence.

Tuesday, October 3, 2017

Worse mass shooting in contemporary American history

If there is one thing we can be sure of, when the worse mass shooting in contemporary American history occurs, it will be news.

In reviewing how this horrible event is being covered by the media, we see some pretty typical and predictable elements in their stories. For example, there are tributes to the "naive and innocent victims."

And there are stories about the "heroes" that helped save the day.

CNN has a minute by minute account. And a look into the gunman's perch.

Fox has a story featuring the victims and this: Stories of heroism emerge following deadly Vegas shooting. And of course, they use this to attack a Democrat (duh): Hillary Clinton shamelessly politicizes Las Vegas massacre.

And of course, both have lots of video where you can watch the shooting happen. How sick is that?

I wonder how long it will take to face the reality of what is undeniably behind this--the presence of far too many guns in our society. Consider this, from the Washington Post:
Don't believe it has to do with the guns? Read this and tell me why!?!?!?! Gun violence in America, explained in 17 maps and charts
Yes, it has begun, the media questioning of why Congress does nothing. This from the New York Times: 477 Days. 521 Mass Shootings. Zero Action From Congress.
We just have to accept that, we simply don't care. I personally knew this was true when 20 six and seven year olds had their heads and faces blown off in an elementary school in 2012. Even that didn't cause us to do anything. And so this just keeps happening, over and over and over and over and ...

Thursday, September 14, 2017

What do you NEED to know today?

You think it would be in the news then, right?

So, CNN has "5 things you need to know today." One of the stories is:

"At least 21 children and two teachers were killed when a fire broke out at a school in Kuala Lumpur. Witnesses reported hearing cries for help from inside the burning building and seeing children unable to escape because of metal grills on windows. Renovations to the building had reportedly blocked a fire exit. Officials are examining whether an electric short circuit caused the fire."

Ask yourself, where is Kuala Lumpur? You probably don't even know, so why is this news in the US? And why is it one of five things you NEED to know today?

Perhaps for the same reason this is a top story?

Irma's aftermath

Investigations launched after Florida nursing home deaths

What do these victims have in common with the kids from the other story? And also with the child in this story?

Boy falls into a volcanic crater in Italy

Meanwhile, over at Fox News, these are two of the top stories today. Each has other stories "linked" ot it, even though the other stories are in no way related!

Tuesday, September 12, 2017

Stories NOT really in the mainstream news

Brought to you by Truthout, a liberal non-profit media organization.

Will the Courts Save the Dreamers?

By Marjorie Cohn, Truthout | News Analysis
Thousands of immigrants and supporters join the Defend DACA March to oppose the President Trump order to end DACA on September 10, 2017 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo: David McNew / Getty Images)Thousands of immigrants and supporters join the Defend DACA March to oppose the President Trump order to end the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program on September 10, 2017, in Los Angeles, California. (Photo: David McNew / Getty Images)
With 17 states filing two lawsuits over Trump's DACA rescission, it is more likely that the fate of the Dreamers will be decided in the US Supreme Court rather than in Congress, which would have to defy years of history to agree on comprehensive immigration reform. But if Trump gets to appoint one more justice to the court, DACA may well be struck down.


Tuesday, September 5, 2017

Why is THIS news?

Among the top stories in the news today is this headline from CNN:

Son of Alabama assistant coach shot and killed

Why is this shooting news when other gun murders happened dozens of times over the weekend?

It could be because Alabama is the number 1 team in the nation? And because their first game this year was the most watched opening game ever? That is CNN's story just below the one about the shooting.

Then, there is this story about a police officer during a DUI stop telling a white woman, "Remember, we only kill black people."

Meanwhile, over at Fox News, one of the lead stories is this one:

Report: News photographer shot by cop at traffic stop

And this!

Man tied to $500M heist faces jail in separate case

Here the news show they don't know the difference between prison and jail! Wow!

So, why are these stories NEWS?

Tuesday, August 29, 2017

President Trump reverses Obama order, allowing local police to have military weapons

From the Washington Post:

"President Donald Trump plans to resume the transfer of surplus weapons, vehicles and other equipment from the nation’s military to its state and local law enforcement agencies, reviving a program that was sharply curtailed by President Barack Obama two years ago. The program launched in 1990 but was greatly limited after public reaction to images of heavily militarized police in the streets of Ferguson, Mo., and other sites of civil unrest."

You might think this is a good idea. You might think it is a bad idea. What do the "experts" think? And which experts are being interviewed?

In chapter 1 of your book, it is argued that these kinds of stories often feature the voices of police and politicians. Is that what you see in these news articles on the story?

This is a local police officer!

Tuesday, August 22, 2017

The importance of alternative news

As you will see in the book, the mainstream media are owned by for-profit corporations, and as a result, many important stories are either downplayed or ignored altogether.

Here are a few examples that are found today on the news website, Truthout, but not mainstream media outlets:

Doctors Warm to Single-Payer Health Care

Doctors Warm to Single-Payer Health Care

By Rachel Bluth, Kaiser Health News | News Analysis
Single-payer health care is still a controversial idea in the US, but a majority of physicians are moving to support it, a new survey finds. Fifty-six percent of doctors registered either strong support or were somewhat supportive of a single-payer health system, according to the survey by Merritt Hawkins, a physician recruitment firm.

  Renegotiating NAFTA Will Only Serve the Rich -- Just Like It Always Has

Renegotiating NAFTA Will Only Serve the Rich -- Just Like It Always Has

By David L. Wilson, Truthout | Op-Ed
Both Donald Trump and his neoliberal opponents seem to agree that NAFTA has been good for Mexicans, but in reality, the pact caused Mexico to lose millions of jobs, especially in the agricultural sector, and resulted in a sharp increase in migration to the US. If NAFTA is renewed, it will continue to benefit transnational corporate moguls rather than workers.

Betsy DeVos's "School Choice" Is Really Crony Capitalism

By Jeff Bryant, Campaign for America's Future | Op-Ed 
"Trump TV": How the Sinclair Merger Would Move Media Further Right

"Trump TV": How the Sinclair Merger Would Move Media Further Right

By Janine Jackson, FAIR | Interview 
Now, would you expect to see these stories on CNN or Fox? Why or why not?

Monday, March 27, 2017

What is terrorism?

Ah ha! Finally a media story, albeit an op-ed, about the power to define.

As noted in the book, it is lawmakers who get to decide what is crime and what is not, what drugs are harmful and which are not, and what is terrorism and what is not. Here is an opinion piece about this issue. Do you agree or not? And why?

Opinion: Call white supremacist violence by its name: Terrorism



Sunday, February 26, 2017

New edition coming out soon!

Hi readers!

I've taken some time off the blog but since a new edition of the book is coming out soon, I will be blogging again soon about top stories in the news and entertainment as they related to crime and criminal justice.

You can register to comment on this site and interact with me. And you can also use the search box to examine what has been blogged about here in the past. Just enter any term and hit search!