Wednesday, April 29, 2015

Freddie Gray Rap Sheet ^ 

Claim: Freddie Gray, who died from injuries he sustained while in Baltimore police custody on 12 April 2015, had a lengthy arrest record.

Example: [Collected via email, April 2015]
Did Freddie gray really have a rap sheet?
Origins: On 12 April 2015, a 25-year-old man named Freddie Gray sustained grave injuries (from which he subsequently died) while in police custody in Baltimore. Although details about Gray's arrest, custody, and death are still unclear, some aspects of the case have come to light.
On 27 April 2015, the web site Heavy published an article that included Gray's arrest record, as follows:
March 20, 2015: Possession of a Controlled Dangerous Substance
March 13, 2015: Malicious destruction of property, second-degree assault
January 20, 2015: Fourth-degree burglary, trespassing
January 14, 2015: Possession of a controlled dangerous substance, possession of a controlled dangerous substance with intent to distribute
December 31, 2014: Possession of narcotics with intent to distribute
December 14, 2014: Possession of a controlled dangerous substance
August 31, 2014: Illegal gambling, trespassing
January 25, 2014: Possession of marijuana
September 28, 2013: Distribution of narcotics, unlawful possession of a controlled dangerous substance, second-degree assault, second-degree escape
April 13, 2012: Possession of a controlled dangerous substance with intent to distribute, unlawful possession of a controlled dangerous substance, violation of probation
July 16, 2008: Possession of a controlled dangerous substance, possession with intent to distribute
March 28, 2008: Unlawful possession of a controlled dangerous substance
March 14, 2008: Possession of a controlled dangerous substance with intent to manufacture and distribute
February 11, 2008: Unlawful possession of a controlled dangerous substance, possession of a controlled dangerous substance
August 29, 2007: Possession of a controlled dangerous substance with intent to distribute, violation of probation
more arrests at link...
(Excerpt) Read more at ...

Riot-Plagued Baltimore Is a Catastrophe Entirely of the Democratic Party’s Own Making

National Review ^ | April 28, 2015 | Kevin D. Williamson 

A few weeks ago, there was an election in Ferguson, Mo., the result of which was to treble the number of African Americans on that unhappy suburb’s city council. This was greeted in some corners with optimism — now, at last, the city’s black residents would have a chance to see to securing their own interests. This optimism flies in the face of evidence near — St. Louis — and far — Baltimore, Detroit, Philadelphia, Cleveland, Atlanta, Los Angeles, San Francisco . . .

St. Louis has not had a Republican mayor since the 1940s, and in its most recent elections for the board of aldermen there was no Republican in the majority of the contests; the city is overwhelmingly Democratic, effectively a single-party political monopoly from its schools to its police department.Baltimore has seen two Republicans sit in the mayor’s office since the 1920s — and none since the 1960s. Like St. Louis, it is effectively a single-party political monopoly from its schools to its police department. Philadelphia has not elected a Republican mayor since 1948. The last Republican to be elected mayor of Detroit was congratulated on his victory by President Eisenhower. Atlanta, a city so corrupt that its public schools are organized as a criminal conspiracy against its children, last had a Republican mayor in the 19th century. Its municipal elections are officially nonpartisan, but the last Republican to run in Atlanta’s 13th congressional district did not manage to secure even 30 percent of the vote; Atlanta is effectively a single-party political monopoly from its schools to its police department.
American cities are by and large Democratic-party monopolies, monopolies generally dominated by the so-called progressive wing of the party. The results have been catastrophic, and not only in poor black cities such as Baltimore and Detroit. Money can paper over some of the defects of progressivism in rich, white cities such as Portland and San Francisco, but those are pretty awful places to be non-white and non-rich, too: Blacks make up barely 9 percent of the population in San Francisco, but they represent 40 percent of those arrested for murder, and they are arrested for drug offenses at ten times their share of the population. Criminals make their own choices, sure, but you want to take a look at the racial disparity in educational outcomes and tell me that those low-income nine-year-olds in Wisconsin just need to buck up and bootstrap it?
Black urban communities face institutional failure across the board every day. There are people who should be made to answer for that: What has Martin O’Malley to say for himself? What can Ed Rendell say for himself other than that he secured a great deal of investment for the richest square mile in Philadelphia? What has Nancy Pelosi done about the radical racial divide in San Francisco?
Mychal Denzel Smith, toy radical at The Nation, offered the usual illiterate slogan “f**k the police” and declared of the rioters: “I also hope they break s**t.” Writers at Salon also endorsed violence for its own sake. “I do not advocate non-violence,” Benji Hart affirmed. Most of this can be credited to juvenile posturing, and it should be noted that the rioters in Baltimore mostly are not burning down tax offices or police stations but are in the main looting businesses and carrying out acts of wanton opportunistic vandalism — that’s not a revolt, but a crime spree. Meretricious “black rage” rhetoric notwithstanding, what we have seen in places such as Ferguson and Baltimore is much more ordinarily criminal than political.
But there is a legitimate concern here — from which no one seems to be willing to draw the obvious conclusion: There is someone to blame for what’s wrong in Baltimore.
Would any sentient adult American be shocked to learn that Baltimore has a corrupt and feckless police department enabled by a corrupt and feckless city government? I myself would not, and the local authorities’ dishonesty and stonewalling in the death of Freddie Gray is reminiscent of what we have seen in other cities. There’s a heap of evidence that the Baltimore police department is pretty bad.
This did not come out of nowhere. While the progressives have been running the show in Baltimore, police commissioner Ed Norris was sent to prison on corruption charges (2004), two detectives were sentenced to 454 years in prison for dealing drugs (2005), an officer was dismissed after being videotaped verbally abusing a 14-year-old and then failing to file a report on his use of force against the same teenager (2011), an officer was been fired for sexually abusing a minor (2014), and the city paid a quarter-million-dollar settlement to a man police illegally arrested for the non-crime of recording them at work with his mobile phone. There’s a good deal more. Does that sound like a disciplined police organization to you?
Yes, Baltimore seems to have some police problems. But let us be clear about whose fecklessness and dishonesty we are talking about here: No Republican, and certainly no conservative, has left so much as a thumbprint on the public institutions of Baltimore in a generation. Baltimore’s police department is, like Detroit’s economy and Atlanta’s schools, the product of the progressive wing of the Democratic party enabled in no small part by black identity politics. This is entirely a left-wing project, and a Democratic-party project.
When will the Left be held to account for the brutality in Baltimore — brutality for which it bears a measure of responsibility on both sides? There aren’t any Republicans out there cheering on the looters, and there aren’t any Republicans exercising real political power over the police or other municipal institutions in Baltimore. Community-organizer — a wretched term — Adam Jackson declared that in Baltimore “the Democrats and the Republicans have both failed.” Really? Which Republicans? Ulysses S. Grant? Unless I’m reading the charts wrong, the Baltimore city council is 100 percent Democratic.
The other Democratic monopolies aren’t looking too hot, either. We’re sending Atlanta educators to prison for running a criminal conspiracy to hide the fact that they failed, and failed woefully, to educate the children of that city. Isolated incident? Nope: Atlanta has another cheating scandal across town at the police academy. Who is being poorly served by the fact that Atlanta’s school system has been converted into crime syndicate? Mostly poor, mostly black families. Who is likely to suffer from any incompetents advanced through the Atlanta police department by its corrupt academy? Mostly poor, mostly black people. Who suffers most from the incompetence of Baltimore’s Democratic mayor? Mostly poor, mostly black families — should they feel better that she’s black? Who suffers most from the incompetence and corruption of Baltimore’s police department? Mostly poor, mostly black families.
And it’s the same people who will suffer the most from the vandalism and pillaging going on in Baltimore, too.
The evidence suggests very strongly that the left-wing, Democratic claques that run a great many American cities — particularly the poor and black cities — are not capable of running a school system or a police department. They are incompetent, they are corrupt, and they are breathtakingly arrogant. Cleveland, Philadelphia, Detroit, Baltimore — this is what Democrats do.
And the kids in the street screaming about “inequality”? Somebody should tell them that the locale in these United States with the least economic inequality is Utah, i.e. the state farthest away from the reach of the people who run Baltimore.
Keep voting for the same thing, keep getting the same thing.

Winner of the Week: Scott Walker

Steve Deace ^ | April 28, 2015 | Steve Deace 

Editor’s Note: This is a weekly feature where we single out which 2016 presidential candidate did the best job crafting a winning message, based on the 10 Commandments of Political Warfare from Steve Deace’s book “Rules for Patriots: How Conservatives Can Win Again.”

Previous Winners:
Week of March 17th: Rand Paul
Week of March 24th: Ted Cruz
Week of March 31st: Ted Cruz
Week of April 7th: Bobby Jindal
Week of April 14th: Rand Paul
Week of April 21st: Rick Santorum
To say I wasn’t impressed with Scott Walker’s initial presidential roll-out would be an understatement. After speaking of the celebrated Wisconsin governor in glowing terms throughout the pages of Rules for Patriots, the first impression he left earlier this year as a presidential candidate was this is another Romney — albeit with a better record.
I even went so far as to say I thought Walker should go away for a while, figure out what his message is and what kind of candidate he wants to be, and then come back once he’s figured everything out.
This week it appears as if Walker has.
Walker has moved Right on the two issues the GOP establishment demands the party move Left — amnesty and marriage/religious freedom. By doing so, Walker has let it be known he does intend to make the case he’s the conservatives’ champion in 2016. That he’s not abandoning his base (Commandment #6) to become just another run-of-the-mill, “make the trains run on time” Republican.
On amnesty Walker didn’t just put forth a plan that says no to amnesty and yes to the rule of law, but even addresses the problem of the glut of legal immigration. Which imports competition for the American worker at a time a record 93 million people don’t have a job. If America’s unemployed were its own population, it would be the 15th most populous nation on earth. That’s more people than Egypt, France, Spain, and the United Kingdom. Walker even wisely defined his immigration plan as pro-American worker (Commandment #8 ).
Walker also voiced support for Ted Cruz’s proposed amendment to the U.S. Constitution, which would allow individual states — not unelected judges — to define and enforce marriage laws.
Finally, Walker made an under-the-radar move that is worthy of notice. His presidential SuperPAC hired Shirley & Banister, one of the most respected P.R. firms in the conservative movement, to handle its messaging and strategy. The P.R. firm was founded by Craig Shirley, the best-selling biographer of Ronald Reagan. I know this firm well, because I retained their services myself the past few months. Their main interest is promoting causes/people that are advancing movement conservatism. So they’re not going to sign on with Walker in order to promote milquetoast (Commandment #9).
Frankly, I was beginning to wonder if Walker was going to be the Tim Pawlenty of 2016. But this week indicates he’s re-branding himself back to what made him successful in Wisconsin. And for that reason Walker is our winner of the week.

The Look

Little Bitty Lies!

Obama still 'soul-searching' on racial unrest

Washington Examiner ^ | 4/29/15 | Susan Crabtree 

Just hours after a powder keg of racial tension in Baltimore exploded into violence, looting and destruction, President Obama once again urged America to do some soul-searching and commit to helping impoverished black communities gripped with unemployment, drug addiction and educational inequality.

It was the similar soul-searching message the president sent nearly three years ago in 2012 amid a national firestorm over the slaying of 17-year-old Trayvon Martin by neighborhood watch volunteer George Zimmerman in Florida.
But if America has done any deep thinking over the issue, there have been few tangible results and president's policing task forces have done little to heal the nation's open racial wounds.
Since Martin's slaying, a string of deadly clashes between police and black men have continued, spurring community outrage and violence throughout the country.
After Michael Brown's killing by a police officer in Ferguson, and the weeks of violence, rioting and protests that erupted there, Obama appointed an 11-person task force to make recommendations on 21st Century Policing polices to build trust between law enforcement and black and minority communities around the country.
But so far the task force, like many toothless Washington blue-ribbon commissions, failed to shift the dynamic and become a catalyst for any real change.
Late last year, Eric Garner, whom police confronted for allegedly illegally selling cigarettes, died in a police chokehold. And already this year, Walter Scott was shot five times in the back by police in South Carolina and Freddie Gray mysteriously died from spinal injuries suffered while under police custody in Baltimore.
There have been more than a dozen incidents in a year and a half around the country — all with similar themes — frustrations with police brutality and the lack of opportunity in blighted urban communities.
National Urban League President Marc Morial reacted to the civil unrest in Baltimore by declaring the racial tensions sweeping across the country a "state of emergency of tremendous proportions," arguing that the riots and deep anger in the black community show a lack of faith in the local and national political systems to adequately respond.
"It's imperative that we address the outrage that fuels the unrest and heals the rifts between police and the communities they serve," he said.
Few could have predicted that racial riots would mark the final years of America's first black president's time in office. But Obama has mostly appeared penned in by the crisis, worried that if he wades in too deep he will prejudice the legal outcome of the cases and stoke more division.
On Tuesday as the smoke cleared in Baltimore, Obama continued the balancing act.
While he said there was "no excuse" for Monday's violence in Baltimore and perpetrators should be treated as criminals, he also called on America to come together to address the underlying problems of unemployment, drug addiction and fatherless homes.
Still, he offered few concrete prescriptions other than "soul-searching," complaining that he didn't expect the Republican-controlled Congress to dig into the issue of black inner-city poverty.
"Now, I'm under no illusion that out of this Congress we're going to get massive investments in urban communities, and so we'll try to find areas where we can make a difference around school reform and around job training and some investments in infrastructure in these communities and trying to attract new businesses," he said, noting that sentencing reform for non-violent drug offenders could also help those convicted of lesser crimes get jobs.
The president also talked about communities where investment and manufacturing have been shipped way just minutes after extolling the virtues of a massive new trade deal that many on the left and some on the right blame for killing jobs that many of blue-collar communities like Baltimore once depended on.
In passing, the president mentioned new Justice Department grants or communities who want to purchase body cameras.
After Scott's killing earlier this month, White House spokesman Josh Earnest said body cameras could have helped and touted a $75 million Justice Department grant announced earlier in the year that would help law enforcement agencies across the country purchase body cameras.
Obama's budget calls for $97 million to help communities buy them, but the White House has failed to amplify the issue as a major priority.
The White House, at times, also has sent mixed messages about its role in trying to quell racial unrest – even as early as Monday.
Confronted by questions about the protests in Baltimore before they turned exceptionally violent on Monday, Earnest seemed to suggest there was very little role for the president and the federal government to play.
"This is fundamentally a local issue," he told reporters.
While the president's policing task force made recommendations he said the fate of every city's response rests in their local leaders.
"There does need to be local elected leaders and local law enforcement leaders to confront this challenge and to demonstrate some determination about trying to build bridges with the citizens that they're sworn to protect," Earnest said.
Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., in a sternly-worded speech on the Senate floor Tuesday, echoed the president's call for criminal justice reform and more education and job training investments in impoverished communities.
But he too has done very little to back up his rhetoric with action.
"No American should ever feel that their life is not valued," Reid said Tuesday on the Senate floor.
He also highlighted several bills that would reform the nations sentencing laws. Congress enacted the laws after a national crime wave in the 1980s that both liberals and libertarians now decry as flooding the nation's prison population.
"It's easy to believe the system is rigged against you," he said.
Reid did not mention, however, that while serving as majority leader from 2007 to 2014, he did not bring any sentencing reform measures to the floor, including a bipartisan bill sponsored by Sens. Rand Paul, R-Ky., and Cory Booker, D-N.J., for debate and a possible vote.

Kerry Told Iran He Wishes ‘U.S. Had a Leader like Iran’s Supreme Leader’!

Washington Free Beacon ^ | 4/29/15 | Adam Kredo 

Secretary of State John Kerry told his Iranian counterpart that he wished the United States had a leader more like Supreme Leader Ayatollah Khamenei, according to comments made by a senior Iranian cleric and repeated in the country’s state-run media.
Ayatollah Alam al-Hoda claimed during Friday prayer services in Iran that in negotiations over Tehran’s contested nuclear program, Kerry told the country’s foreign minister that he “wished the U.S. had a leader like Iran’s supreme leader,” according to a Persian-language report on the remarkspublished by the Asriran news site.
“In the negotiations Kerry told [Iranian Foreign Minister Javad] Zarif that he [Kerry] wished U.S. had a leader like Iran’s supreme leader,” according to Alam al-Hoda, who is a senior member of the Iran’s powerful Assembly of Experts.
A senior administration official told the Washington Free Beacon that such a contention is patently absurd.
The remarks are the latest in a string of comments made by Iranian leaders purporting to reveal private details of the talks.
Iranian newspapers have carried multiple reports in recent months suggesting that Iranian Foreign Minister and chief negotiator Javad Zarif was ordered to stop screaming at Kerry behind closed doors.
In his Friday remarks, al-Hoda went on to say that Obama is set on striking a deal with Iran by June.
“Both Republicans and Democrats want these negotiations with Iran, but they fight each other for partisan interests,” he was quoted as saying. “Obama wants the negotiation to succeed so his party can win the next election and Republicans want to stop him.”
Alam al-Hoda also celebrated Iran’s expansion in the region and controversial activities in war-torn countries such as Syria and Yemen.
“Today, the resistance crescent has gone beyond Syria and Lebanon and reached to Yemen,” he said. “Today the resistance front is in control of Strait of Hormuz and Bab-el-Mandeb.”
The “U.S. and Israel have not been so weak anytime before,” he continues. “All these events are being managed by the hidden Imam,” a revered religious figure in Shia Islam.
Saeed Ghasseminejad, an Iranian dissident and fellow at the Foundation for Defense of Democracies (FDD), said U.S. overtures to Iran at the negotiating table have failed to win it any respect from the Islamic Republic’s leaders.
“President Obama thinks that by making more concessions he can gain the trust and respect of Iranian leaders,” Ghasseminejad said. “However, Iranian leaders neither trust him nor respect him.
“Seeing unprecedented weakness in the U.S. president, Iranian leaders do not fear the United States anymore. Partnership, trust, and alliance between the radical Islamist regime of Tehran and United States cannot and should not exist.”
Meanwhile, Zarif said over the weekend that fighting between the Obama administration and Congress over a potential final deal could not stop America from implementing any agreement the White House signs.
“As we have stated since the beginning, we consider the U.S. administration responsible for implementing the agreement and internal problems and conflicts in the U.S. are not related to us and to the implementation of the agreement, and based on the international laws, the countries’ internal problems don’t exempt them from implementing their undertakings and this is the main framework that we attach importance to,” Zarif said,according to the Fars News Agency.
On Monday, Zarif urged the United States to woo Iran.
“Maintaining an uncertain and unstable situation is not acceptable to Iran and the Americans should take practical and confidence-building measures to reach a comprehensive nuclear agreement,” Zarif was quoted as telling reporters.


Breitbart ^ | April 29, 2015 | JOHN NOLTE 

Contrary to the emotional blackmail some leftists are attempting to peddle, Baltimore is not America’s problem or shame. That failed city is solely and completely a Democrat problem. Like many failed cities, Detroit comes to mind, and every city besieged recently by rioting, Democrats and their union pals have had carte blanche to inflict their ideas and policies on Baltimore since 1967, the last time there was a Republican Mayor.
In 2012, after four years of his own failed policies, President Obama won a whopping 87.4% of the Baltimore City vote. Democrats run the city of Baltimore, the unions, the schools, and, yes, the police force. Since 1969, there have only been only been two Republican governors of the State of Maryland.
Elijah Cummings has represented Baltimore in the U.S. Congress for more than thirty years. As I write this, despite his objectively disastrous reign, the Democrat-infested mainstream media is treating the Democrat like a local folk hero, not the obvious and glaring failure he really is.
Every single member of the Baltimore city council is a Democrat.
Liberalism and all the toxic government dependence and cronyism and union corruption and failed schools that comes along with it, has run amok in Baltimore for a half-century, and that is Baltimore’s problem. It is the free people of Baltimore who elect and then re-elect those who institute policies that have so spectacularly failed that once-great city. It is the free people of Baltimore who elected Mayor Room-To-Destroy.
(Excerpt) Read more at ...

Debunking Obama's Bilious Baltimore Babble ^ | April 29, 2015 | Michelle Malkin 

It's never enough. American taxpayers have surrendered billions and billions and billions of dollars to the social-justice-spender-in-chief. But it's never, ever enough.

The latest paroxysm of urban violence, looting, and recriminations in Baltimore prompted President Obama on Tuesday to trot out his frayed Blame The Callous, Tight-Fisted Republicans card. After dispensing with an obligatory wrist-slap of toilet paper-and Oreo-filching "protesters" who are burning Charm City to the ground (he hurriedly changed it to "criminals and thugs" mid-word), the 2009 Nobel Peace Prize winner got down to his usual business: hectoring his political opponents and grousing that America hasn't forked over enough money for him to make the "massive investments" needed to "make a difference right now."
If we are "serious" about preventing more riots, the president declared, then "the rest of us" (translation: all of us stingy conservatives) have to make sure "we are providing early education" and "making investments" so that inner-city youths are "getting the training they need to find jobs."
Narcissus on the Potomac wheedled that "there's a bunch of my agenda that would make a difference right now." Me, me, me! His laundry list of the supposedly underfunded cures that he can't get through Congress includes "school reform," "job training" and "some investments in infrastructure" to "attract new businesses."
I'll give POTUS credit: He can lay it on thicker than a John Deere manure spreader.
Let's talk "massive investments," shall we?
In 2009, Obama and the Democrats rammed the $840 billion federal stimulus package through Capitol Hill under the guise of immediate job creation and economic recovery. An estimated $64 billion went to public school districts; another nearly $50 billion went for other education spending. This included $13 billion for low-income public school kids; $4.1 billion for Head Start and childcare services; $650 million for educational technology; $200 million for working college students; and $70 million for homeless children.
How's that all working out? Last week, economists from the St. Louis Federal Reserve surveyed more than 6,700 education stimulus recipients and concluded that for every $1 million of stimulus grants to a district, a measly 1.5 jobs were created. "Moreover, all of this increase came in the form of nonteaching staff," the report found, and the "jobs effect was also not statistically different from zero."
More than three-quarters of the jobs "created or saved" in the first year of the stimulus were government jobs, while roughly 1 million private sector jobs were forestalled or destroyed, according to Ohio State University. President Obama later admitted "there was no such thing" as "shovel-ready projects." But there were plenty of pork-ready recipients, from green energy billionaires to union bosses to Democratic campaign finance bundlers. About $230 billion in porkulus funds was set aside for infrastructure projects, yet less than a year later, Obama was back asking for another $50 billion to pour down the infrastructure black hole.
In 2010, President Obama signed the so-called Edujobs bill into law -- a $26 billion political wealth redistribution scheme paying back Big Labor for funding Democratic congressional campaigns. A year later, several were spending on the money to plug budget shortfalls instead of hiring teachers. Other recipients received billions despite having full educational payrolls and not knowing what to do with the big bucks.
In 2012, with bipartisan support, Obama signed the Jumpstart Our Business Startups Act "to encourage startups and support our nation's small businesses."
In July 2014, with bipartisan support, Obama signed the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act to "help job seekers access employment, education, training, and support services to succeed in the labor market and to match employers with the skilled workers they need to compete in the global economy." (Never mind that a GAO review of the feds' existing 47 job-training programs run by nine different agencies "generally found the effects of participation were not consistent across programs, with only some demonstrating positive impacts that tended to be small, inconclusive or restricted to short-term impacts.")
In December 2014, the White House unveiled nearly $1 billion in new "investments" to "expand access to high-quality early childhood education to every child in America" from "birth and continuing to age 5."
That's all on top of the $6 billion government-funded national service and education initiative known as the SERVE America Act, which was enacted less than a month after the nearly $1 trillion stimulus with the help of a majority of Big Government Senate Republicans. The SERVE America Act included $1.1 billion to increase the investment in national service opportunities; $97 million for Learn and Serve America Youth Engagement Zones; and nearly $400 million for the Social Innovation Fund and Volunteer Generation Fund.
The "social innovation" slush fund was intended to "create new knowledge about how to solve social challenges in the areas of economic opportunity, youth development and school support, and healthy futures, and to improve our nation's problem-solving infrastructure in low-income communities." The biggest beneficiaries? Obama's progressive cronies.
Apparently, the richly funded "social innovators" haven't reached the looter-prone neighborhoods of Baltimore yet. But it's not ideologically bankrupt Obama's fault. It's ours.

Too Easy




On the road again!




Income Inequality


No talent


The Hillbillies


Act Now?




Happy Earth Day




Middle Class Hero?


Red Herring


Roll On!




Just Kidding!




Greed Acres




Lie to us!