The military occupation of Ferguson is now over

Looks like the military occupation of Ferguson is about to come to an end
Missouri Governor Jay Nixon ordered the St. Louis County Police Department out of Ferguson yesterday and put state troopers in charge. He named Highway Patrol Captain Ron Johnson in charge of security in Ferguson. Not only is Johnson originally from Ferguson, he is a man of color.

In other words, he’s black.

This should help defuse a volatile situation. It’s certainly better than flooding the streets with policemen dressed up like they’re in the military. I’m old-school in that I think the police should look like the police, the military should look like the military.

What’s going on in Ferguson, Missouri?

ap287279624779Ferguson, Missouri, a small suburb of St Louis, has turned into a warzone. On August 9, Michael Brown, an unarmed 18-year-old black man was shot multiple times and killed by an unnamed, white police officer. The killing took place in the middle of the street, at around noon and in front of lots of witnesses. According to those witnesses, Brown had his hands in the air and was asking the officer to not shoot when he was killed.

Crowds of people began to form almost immediately. The police responded by bringing in police backup from 15 other police departments, many of which wearing military garb.

The next night, after a day of peaceful vigils, things began to go violent. Crowds began looting businesses and vandalizing vehicles. Around two dozen businesses were broken into and looted.

It’s been a chaotic mess in Ferguson ever since. People have been protesting and the police have been assembling in mass, decked out in military garb and armed with military-grade weaponry and vehicles.

When did it become acceptable for civilian police to cosplay like they’re in the military?

I feel bad for Michael Brown and his family, but the unfortunate truth is that in 2014, when a police officer wants to kill you, they pretty much can kill you with impunity. That’s just the reality we live in. No amount of vigils, protests, or lootings is going to change that. The killing took place on Saturday and we still don’t know the name of the shooter. It’s as if we don’t deserve to know who murdered Michael Brown, simply because of the killer’s occupation. We do know the shooter is on paid administrative leave. In other words, become a police officer, kill an unarmed black kid in broad daylight and get an extended paid vacation, paid for by the taxpayers.

God bless America.

Shelly Sterling named ‘Clipper’s Number One Fan’

EmeritusThe NBA officially declared yesterday that former Microsoft muckety-muck Steve Ballmer is now the owner of the Los Angeles Clippers. It cost him only $2 billion. That’s OK though, because he’s worth around $20 billion. One might think that when you pay that much for a team, that the sale would be clean, without any extra obligations.

That is not the case with the sale of the Los Angeles Clippers.

The deal involves a series of perks for Shelly Sterling, longtime wife of former Clippers owner, racist scumbag Donald Sterling. This perks include:

  • $200 million funneled into The Shelly Sterling Foundation, an organization to be dedicated to benefiting children, minorities, and abused women. As the name implies, Sterling will get to run the foundation.
  • Two courtside tickets to all Clippers home games.
  • Ten tickets in sections 101 or 111 to all Clippers home games.
  • Six packing spots in Lot C for each Clippers game.
  • Twelve VIP passes to all of the fancy lounges and clubs in the Staples Center.
  • Three championship rings if the Clippers ever win a title.
  • Honorary title of “Owner Emeritus” and “Clipper’s Number One Fan” for the rest of her life.

Why Steve Ballmer would want to own the Los Angeles Clippers is beyond me, especially when it means he will have to deal with Shelly Sterling on a continuous basis. She’s just as racist and just as awful as her husband. I would rather drink a glass of Ebola than associate with Shelly Sterling.

The silliness of Maryland’s tax-free week

The silliness of Maryland's tax-free weekUntil Saturday, when you buy clothing or shoes in the state of Maryland, you won’t be charged sales tax. From the official Shop Maryland Tax-Free Week website:

The second Sunday of August to the following Saturday is designated as Shop Maryland tax-free Week each year. That means qualifying apparel and footwear $100 or less, per item, are exempt from the state sales tax. Accessory items are not included. The Shop Maryland Tax-Free Week for 2014 is Sunday, August 10 – Saturday, August 16.

Maryland sales tax is normally a whopping six percent.

They do this every year and I think it’s kind of dumb, mostly because of the way people respond to it. We were at the mall Sunday and people seemed to be buying a lot of stuff. There was a long line at the register at one of the shoe stores. I don’t think I’ve ever seen people lined up there to buy anything. And for what, to save six percent?

That seems kind of silly.

Six percent isn’t that much. If stores collectively decided to have a week-long sale where everything was six percent off, would people even respond? Would they be lining up?

The Maryland comptroller published a three-page list of what gets taxed and what doesn’t. Bow ties are taxed, adult diapers are not. They also published a list of Frequently asked questions. I read through them and if people are really frequently asking these questions, Maryland has a lot more stupid people than I ever thought.

Bryce Harper drags foot over Braves logo

Bryce Harper drags foot over Braves logoSpoiled brat Bryce Harper of the Washington Nationals took some much deserved heat Saturday night from Atlanta Braves fans when he intentionally dragged his foot over the giant stylized letter “A” behind home plate. This was evidently done in retaliation for Braves fans booing the immature outfielder every time he made his way to the batter’s box.

Harper of course lied about it after Saturday’s game. That’s what he does. He acts like a punk and then lies about it after he’s called out on it. It’s the Harper way.

It’s hard for me to put into words just how much I dislike Bryce Harper. I can’t even watch Nationals games anymore. Living here in Maryland, I can watch every Orioles and National game on TV. I used to, pre-Harper, watch quite a few Nats games when the O’s weren’t on. Not anymore.

As of this morning, Harper is batting .249 and has only four home runs. He’s struck out 65 times. Being the Bryce Haper hater that I am, maybe I should start watching Nationals games again for the schadenfreude.