It's Friday -- Let's Get Out of Here

Random Friday Morning Thoughts

The New York Post and been New York Posting for a long time now.

  • As part of Sidney Powell's plea bargain in the Georgia insurrection case, she had to write a "letter of apology." Below is the whole thing. I don't blame her.  That's a childish condition of the plea.

  • A modern day Christmas story in four Acts:
    • Act I. This is really pretty simple. If the government opens up its property to any group, it has to open it up to all religions no matter how out of the mainstream they are. To do otherwise, would be "establishing"/endorsing one religion over another as well as censoring speech based upon its content. Both violate the First Amendment. It's not hard. (Side note: The group isn't a Satanic cult at all. They are actually just a "freedom from religion" outfit.)

    • Act II: One guy apparently didn't get the message. And don't celebrate this - that's embarrassing. Instead blame your elected officials for being dumb enough to open up government property to all comers.

    • Act III: And we also have an arrest. "The Iowa Department of Public Safety says 35-year-old Michael Cassidy of Lauderdale, Mississippi, was charged with fourth-degree criminal mischief." But wait. We have a plot twist. He just happens to be running for a state House seat in Mississippi as a "Christian conservative."  

    • Act IV: And, in a routine we know all to well, the grifting has begun. This is all so exhausting. 

  • Four years. Not enough. But do all these people look the same? 

  • Want to watch a 60 second "public service message" which will absolutely stop you down (or outrage you if you are of a certain type)?

  • I call that a successful escape. Video. The sanctuary is "a 232-acre farm home to nearly 450 animals, including cows and bulls, sheep, goats, horses and chickens in rural Suffolk County — about 55 miles northwest of Newark."

  • Interesting if you are, well, interested in that sort of thing. Link. It was released this morning. 

  • Also released this morning: A deep dive by the New York Times. I have a gift link here.

  • The Business Second™: Mortgage rates have begun their fall.

  • The Business 2nd Second™: Pastor Robert Jeffress' empire has invaded Waco.

  • Stuff like this shouldn't be a news story. It happens all the time -- and for far less things than a state championship game. 

  • Legal nerdy stuff: Everyone was roasting the defense attorneys in the comments under this headline -- "they should be disbarred," one said -- but that legal theory is spot on. At least in Texas, the degree of theft is based upon the "fair market value" of the property stolen. And although the jury doesn't have to agree, they are entitled to consider whether the sale price is the fair market value. 

  • Legal nerdy stuff 2: Judge Don Willett is a wingnut, but he sure can write. And yesterday he was spot-out when writing about a crazy case out of Midland that made it to the Fifth Circuit:

  • Time which has passed since the Wise County Sheriff's Office, despite having a full male DNA profile, has failed to solve the murder of Lauren Whitener in her home at Lake Bridgeport: 4 years and 172 days.


Random Thursday Morning Thoughts

This blog admittedly used to have a different feel about it. But the link in that bullet point was still alive so I clicked on it to figure out what I was talking about.  I stand by that post.  

  • The stock market broke 37,000 and set a record high yesterday afternoon. 

  • The good news doesn't stop there. Look at the gas prices in Decatur (below), and they are even cheaper in the metroplex:

  • Well, I guess I wasn't the only one who didn't believe her. But the jury certainly didn't share my reasonable doubt concerns. That was the maximum: 

  • Normally when a cop is on trial for murder around here, it's wall to wall coverage. I hardly heard anything about this one at all.

  • Regarding the story from yesterday about the 8th graders "overdosing" on candy, now they are wildly speculating about fentanyl. I'd tape the brakes on that -- big time. I'm guessing this situation turns out completely different than the current narrative. 

  •  We knew that the the former Sheriff of Clay County had simply gone home a couple of weeks ago right in the middle of his 30 day jail sentence after being transported to the hospital for high blood pressure. Why home? The "Sheriff's Office did not have the manpower to send a deputy" after he was discharged according to the local sheriff. But two days ago a court order got hm back in the hoosegow. (I missed this yesterday.)

  • Lawyer Rusty Hardin stumbled through the impeachment proceedings of Ken Paxton, and now the Dallas Morning News has obtained his firm's bills to the taxpayers for his work: "Hardin used at least 20 employees of his firm and billed $3 million." And bills from other lawyers are still rolling in. Bandits, all of them. I want to see the actual PDFs. 

  • An Oklahoma school superintendent was arrested for public intoxication yesterday while on a school campus.  But I would withhold judgment because the police called in someone who claimed to be a Drug Recognition Expert.  I bet we are going to end up with a medication issue instead of an alcohol issue (although they police do claim alcohol was a factor.)

    • Her on better days:

  • The House voted to begin an impeachment "inquiry" on President Biden yesterday and rolled out this crew to promote it. Those five right there have to drive the normal Republicans crazy. 
    • I went searching through a long uploaded YouTube video by the AP of the proceedings yesterday because of a specific moment I had seen on the news. One Republican member, while giving his presentation on the House floor -- but when pressured to disclose what the exact crimes they were accusing the President of -- had said,  "I will tell you when I have the time."  It was gold. But I couldn't find it. Instead, during my search, I saw this moment in that video clip. I wasn't going to let you not see it, too. Idiocracy: 

  • Impeachment survivor Ken Paxton is behind a PAC designed to defeat three judges on the Texas' highest criminal court because he thinks they have wronged him in the past.  Is it any coincidence that they are all women? Nope. Misogyny is a trademark of the MAGA extremist wing of the Republican Party.

  • A big budget film named "Civil War" - as in a modern day civil war -- is scheduled to be released in April, but the trailer has been released. It has people talking. And a chilling moment is the great Jesse Plemons saying, "Okay. What kind of American are you?"

  • Legal stuff that is pretty important to everyone: A Google policy change will kill geo-warrants issued by police. The change will cause your movement/location data to be only locally stored on your phone, and if you do choose to keep it to the Google cloud, it will be encrypted from everyone, including Google. Police can still get a geo-warrant, but the data will now be worthless.
  • Messenger: Above the Fold