Random Monday Morning Thoughts

This was about a shooting by then Palo Pinto County Sheriff Ira Mercer that had me worked up. (Original post on 12/21/11.)  It looks like the deceased's family sued the Sheriff but, as is normally the case, the lawsuit was thrown out years later based upon qualified immunity. I did note that the Sheriff was later indicted on an unrelated case of "improper use of [an audio or electronic] recording device" where his ex-girlfriend was alleged to be a victim. I can't figure out what happened to it.

  • This is the guy that was in the run-off against David Spiller in the Texas House race earlier this year. There's not a lot of details

  • Democrat Joe Manchin killed the Build Back Better bill yesterday with a surprise announcement on Fox News. And the White House and Democrats were royally P.O.'d about it.

    • This kind of reminds me of John McCain single handedly killing the repeal of Obamacare with then Speaker McConnell looking on in amazement. (Video.)

    • Some suggest that Manchin just become a Republican since West Virginia, who he represents, is deeply Red.  But, without him, the confirmation of President Biden's appointment of federal judges would grind to a halt. Instead, with Manchin's approval, Biden just had his near-record 40th federal judge approved in his first year. 

  • I haven't written much about the case involving the officer who grabbed her pistol instead of her Taser and killed a man. And that's primarily because I'm so conflicted about it. I believe it was a horrible, horrible accident. She deserves to be fired. She deserves to be sued. She deserves some public ridicule. But I always tap the brakes when the criminal justice goes after someone for acts which were not intended. 

  • Abbott celebrated Christmas week by doing a publicity stunt over his own Wall which will never be built. 

  • For the life of me, I never dreamed I'd see a Southern Baptist church allow a Christmas service to be hijacked by, and the pulpit turned over to, a man by the likes of Donald Trump. If Jesus wept over Lazarus, he must have broken down over this. 

  • The generals ain't wrong, 

  • The anti-vaxxers haven't been treated very gently over the last couple of days. By both sides.
    • From the White House:

    • From the Trump rally at the AAC in Dallas yesterday afternoon:

  • We almost had a huge war between Google and the Disney empire.  On Saturday, the two giants announced that they couldn't reach a deal to keep Disney programing (including ESPN and ABC) on YoutubeTV (owned by Google.) It lasted one day. 

  • I think I was one of the very first ones to give this story attention and, since then, everyone has been going off on civil forfeiture laws. Now Dallas Police are trying to justify their legalized theft by invoking the force field of drugs and dogs. First, no drugs were found. Secondly, this use of "drug dogs" is one of the biggest scams every sold to Americans.  

  • Here's another story of DNA exonerating a guy who served prison time on a sentence of life without parole.


    • Here's the money line.

    • Nerdy stuff: I've learned a lot about DNA over the last two years, so I tracked down the earlier appellate court  opinion to see what it said. The key was footnote 3.  Let me tell you, something is seriously wrong here. If the defendant truly matched on 13 of 13 markers, the odds wouldn't have been "only" 1 in 763. It would be more like 1 in a billion. I'm guessing the was a mixture of DNA involving multiple persons and with odds calculated by an algorithm method which is no longer used. What DNA labs had been doing with mixture analysis over the last 15 years has now been seriously overhauled after being questioned by the courts.
  • QAnon at a random bowl game over the weekend. There are some scary people out there.  

  • I saw this on Friday of last week.  (The Jesus fish was a nice touch.) 

    • It's a play on this:  

  • Cowboys castoff Jaylon Smith seemed to be really excited that he was familiar with the "Landry Shift" at the end of the game yesterday. Video

  • The Cotton Bowl, which will host the semi-final game between Alabama and Cincinnati, is advertising on The Ticket a lot. Are they having trouble selling that out?