August 2011 archive
Aug 30 2011
Aug 30 2011
Find the past “On This Day in History” here.
August 30 is the 242nd day of the year (243rd in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. There are 123 days remaining until the end of the year.
On this day in 1967, Thurgood Marshall becomes the first African American to be confirmed as a Supreme Court justice. He would remain on the Supreme Court for 24 years before retiring for health reasons, leaving a legacy of upholding the rights of the individual as guaranteed by the U.S. Constitution.
Thurgood Marshall (July 2, 1908 – January 24, 1993) was an American jurist and the first African American to serve on the Supreme Court of the United States. Before becoming a judge, he was a lawyer who was best remembered for his high success rate in arguing before the Supreme Court and for the victory in Brown v. Board of Education. He was nominated to the court by President Lyndon Johnson in 1967.
Marshall was born in Baltimore, Maryland on July 2, 1908, the great-grandson of a slave who was born in modern-day Democratic Republic of the Congo.His original name was Thoroughgood, but he shortened it to Thurgood in second grade because he disliked spelling it. His father, William Marshall, who was a railroad porter, instilled in him an appreciation for the Constitution of the United States and the rule of law.
Marshall graduated from Frederick Douglass High School in Baltimore in 1925 and from Lincoln University in Pennsylvania in 1930. Afterward, Marshall wanted to apply to his hometown law school, the University of Maryland School of Law, but the dean told him that he would not be accepted because of the school’s segregation policy. Later, as a civil rights litigator, he successfully sued the school for this policy in the case of Murray v. Pearson. As he could not attend the University of Maryland, Marshall sought admission and was accepted at Howard University School of Law.
Marshall received his law degree from the Howard University School of Law in 1933 where he graduated first in his class.
Marshall won his very first U.S. Supreme Court case, Chambers v. Florida, 309 U.S. 227 (1940), at the age of 32. That same year, he was appointed Chief Counsel for the NAACP. He argued many other cases before the Supreme Court, most of them successfully, including Smith v. Allwright, 321 U.S. 649 (1944); Shelley v. Kraemer, 334 U.S. 1 (1948); Sweatt v. Painter, 339 U.S. 629 (1950); and McLaurin v. Oklahoma State Regents, 339 U.S. 637 (1950). His most famous case as a lawyer was Brown v. Board of Education of Topeka, 347 U.S. 483 (1954), the case in which the Supreme Court ruled that “separate but equal” public education, as established by Plessy v. Ferguson, was not applicable to public education because it could never be truly equal. In total, Marshall won 29 out of the 32 cases he argued before the Supreme Court.
Marshall served on the Court for the next twenty-four years, compiling a liberal record that included strong support for Constitutional protection of individual rights, especially the rights of criminal suspects against the government. His most frequent ally on the Court (indeed, the pair rarely voted at odds) was Justice William Brennan, who consistently joined him in supporting abortion rights and opposing the death penalty. Brennan and Marshall concluded in Furman v. Georgia that the death penalty was, in all circumstances, unconstitutional, and never accepted the legitimacy of Gregg v. Georgia, which ruled four years later that the death penalty was constitutional in some circumstances. Thereafter, Brennan or Marshall dissented from every denial of certiorari in a capital case and from every decision upholding a sentence of death. In 1987, Marshall gave a controversial speech on the occasion of the bicentennial celebrations of the Constitution of the United States. Marshall stated,
“the government they devised was defective from the start, requiring several amendments, a civil war, and major social transformations to attain the system of constitutional government and its respect for the freedoms and individual rights, we hold as fundamental today.”
In conclusion Marshall stated
“Some may more quietly commemorate the suffering, struggle, and sacrifice that has triumphed over much of what was wrong with the original document, and observe the anniversary with hopes not realized and promises not fulfilled. I plan to celebrate the bicentennial of the Constitution as a living document, including the Bill of Rights and the other amendments protecting individual freedoms and human rights.”
He retired from the Supreme Court in 1991, and was reportedly unhappy that it would fall to President George H. W. Bush to name his replacement. Bush nominated Clarence Thomas to replace Marshall.
Marshall died of heart failure at the National Naval Medical Center in Bethesda, Maryland, at 2:58 p.m. on January 24, 1993 at the age of 84. He is buried in Arlington National Cemetery. His second wife and their two sons survived him
On November 30, 1993, Justice Marshall was posthumously awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom by President Bill Clinton.
Aug 30 2011
Muse in the Morning
Time for a break from poetry…in order to create some art.
|Let the world know you as you are, not as you think you should be, because sooner or later, if you are posing, you will forget the pose, and then where are you?
Art Glass 43
Aug 30 2011
A couple days ago I read an interesting article on the aljazeera web site titled Double-dip recession is unlikely. What made the article interesting wasn’t the source, or the claim, it was the reasoning behind the claim.
Most post-war recessions were kicked off when car sales and house sales and new construction plummeted.
There seems to be little risk of a substantial decline in either car sales or house sales and construction, primarily because the levels are already so low….
Both car sales and housing construction are already so low that they don’t have much room to fall.
What the author is claiming is “things are already so bad, it’s hard to imagine them getting worse.”
That’s a very interesting claim, but I doubt the author of the article learned it in an economics class. It sounds more like something he heard in a bar, and seemed to make a lot of sense after a few drinks.
That’s not to say he doesn’t have a point of sorts. It’s just that his point is that we are in a Depression.
Aug 30 2011
I actually question the relevance of 911 truth now. So many things American are so dead now. “We” can’t heal as a nation due to this singular excuse for the cancer which followed it. Do corporations who operate in 169 countries want us to be “a nation”.
I have a list of temps my formerly “great” defense contracting company “uses” to avoid paying benefits to. There is some obscure secret formula which decides who among the “temps” makes it to actual real employment/ownership by this company who has had a hand in major government projects. I can state positively that I have never worked at a place which is profanes in all areas of humanity the very spirit America was founded upon.
I see Deadeye Dick is in the lamestream news now. The walking undead. My time is better spent feeding the raccoons marshmellows on the back deck. The cat is curious and wants to open the screen door so I have to get up and shut the glass slider.
It was a perfect weather post hurricane day. Summer wanes and I should be looking forward to apple picking, fall foliage horse rides and haunted Halloween hayrides. An ad on a top alt news site features claims of advanced age enhancing new enzymes allowing 100 years of active life. No thanks I say to myself. Huge feelings of empty blackness and I don’t even know why. Hope it’s nothing big in relation to my spirit world.
Aug 30 2011
Find out why television evangelist Pat Robertson is WORSE, Texas Gov. Rick Perry is WORSER, and Arizona state Sen. Frank Antenori is the WORST PERSON IN THE WORLD for August 26, 2011.
Aug 29 2011
Our regular featured content-
- On This Day In History August 29 by TheMomCat
- Punting the Pundits by TheMomCat
- Evening Edition by ek hornbeck
These featured articles-
- Sunday Train: Four Transport Alternatives to Canadian Tar Sands by BruceMcF
- World of Class Warfare by ek hornbeck
- Obama Corruption: Cover Up of Banking Fraud by TheMomCat
This is an Open Thread
Aug 29 2011
I imagine that today one can hardly get away from reports about the aftermath of Irene. I say I magine it because the most serious effects here in Stars Hollow were losing a chunk of shingles (pretty expensive but not devastating) and cable TV (an annoyance) so I cannot report from first hand knowledge.
It’s easy to forget what happened a mere 6 years ago.
Hurricane Katrina makes landfall
The New York Times
Published: Monday, August 29, 2005
NEW ORLEANS, Louisiana – Hurricane Katrina slammed ashore early Monday and charged toward low-lying New Orleans with 150-mph (240-kph) winds and the threat of an extremely dangerous storm surge.
Katrina turned slightly to the east before slamming ashore early Monday with 145-mph (233-kph) winds, providing some hope that the worst of the storm’s wrath might not be directed at this vulnerable, below-sea-level city.
But National Hurricane Center Director Max Mayfield warned that New Orleans would be pounded throughout the day Monday and that Katrina’s potential 20-foot ( 6-meter) storm surge was still more than capable of swamping the city.
Has New Orleans recovered? Not as much as you might hope. As noted in last night’s Evening Edition–
42 6 years later, Lower 9th Ward still bleak
By CAIN BURDEAU, Associated Press
5 hrs ago
|NEW ORLEANS (AP) – In New Orleans’ Lower 9th Ward, the grasses grow taller than people and street after street is scarred by empty decaying houses, the lives that once played out inside their walls hardly imaginable now.
St. Claude Avenue, the once moderately busy commercial thoroughfare, looks like the main street of a railroad town bypassed long ago by the interstate. Most buildings are shuttered, “For Sale” signs stuck on their sides. There aren’t many buyers. And the businesses that are open are mostly corner stores where folks buy pricey cigarettes, liquor and packaged food.
Six years after Hurricane Katrina slammed into the Gulf Coast, the New Orleans neighborhood that was hardest hit still looks like a ghost town. Redevelopment has been slow in coming, and the neighborhood has just 5,500 residents – one-third its pre-Katrina population.
And let’s not forget this-
Officers Guilty of Shooting Six in New Orleans
By CAMPBELL ROBERTSON, The New York Times
Published: August 5, 2011
NEW ORLEANS – In a verdict that brought a decisive close to a case that has haunted this city since most of it lay underwater nearly six years ago, five current and former New Orleans police officers were found guilty on all counts by a federal jury on Friday for shooting six citizens, two of whom died, and orchestrating a wide-ranging cover-up in the hours, weeks and years that followed.
The defendants were convicted on 25 counts, including federal civil rights violations in connection with the two deaths, for the violence and deception that began on the Danziger Bridge in eastern New Orleans on Sept. 4, 2005, just days after Hurricane Katrina hit and the levees failed.
“The officers convicted today abused their power and violated the public’s trust during the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, exacerbating one of the most devastating times for the people of New Orleans,” Attorney General Eric H. Holder Jr. said. “I am hopeful today’s verdict brings justice for the victims and their family members, helps to heal the community and contributes to the restoration of public trust in the New Orleans Police Department.”
Aug 29 2011
“Barack Obama’s a friend,” he said, “and when you place him in the context of those who are running against him right now, he is a giant.”
In context, the lesser of two evils is still evil. Without making politicians and other elites pay for their failures there is no incentive for them to change behavior.
Economics calls this Moral Hazard.
Aug 29 2011
Find the past “On This Day in History” here.
August 29 is the 241st day of the year (242nd in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. There are 124 days remaining until the end of the year.
On this day in 1533, the 300 year old Inca civilization ended when Francisco Pizarro’s conquistadors strangled the last Inca Emperor, Atahuallpa.
High in the Andes Mountains of Peru, the Inca built a dazzling empire that governed a population of 12 million people. Although they had no writing system, they had an elaborate government, great public works, and a brilliant agricultural system. In the five years before the Spanish arrival, a devastating war of succession gripped the empire. In 1532, Atahuallpa’s army defeated the forces of his half-brother HuÁscar in a battle near Cuzco. Atahuallpa was consolidating his rule when Pizarro and his 180 soldiers appeared.
In 1531, Pizarro sailed down to Peru, landing at Tumbes. He led his army up the Andes Mountains and on November 15, 1532, reached the Inca town of Cajamarca, where Atahuallpa was enjoying the hot springs in preparation for his march on Cuzco, the capital of his brother’s kingdom. Pizarro invited Atahuallpa to attend a feast in his honor, and the emperor accepted. Having just won one of the largest battles in Inca history, and with an army of 30,000 men at his disposal, Atahuallpa thought he had nothing to fear from the bearded white stranger and his 180 men. Pizarro, however, planned an ambush, setting up his artillery at the square of Cajamarca.
On November 16, Atahuallpa arrived at the meeting place with an escort of several thousand men, all apparently unarmed. Pizarro sent out a priest to exhort the emperor to accept the sovereignty of Christianity and Emperor Charles V., and Atahuallpa refused, flinging a Bible handed to him to the ground in disgust. Pizarro immediately ordered an attack. Buckling under an assault by the terrifying Spanish artillery, guns, and cavalry (all of which were alien to the Incas), thousands of Incas were slaughtered, and the emperor was captured.
Atahuallpa offered to fill a room with treasure as ransom for his release, and Pizarro accepted. Eventually, some 24 tons of gold and silver were brought to the Spanish from throughout the Inca empire. Although Atahuallpa had provided the richest ransom in the history of the world, Pizarro treacherously put him on trial for plotting to overthrow the Spanish, for having his half-brother HuÁscar murdered, and for several other lesser charges. A Spanish tribunal convicted Atahuallpa and sentenced him to die. On August 29, 1533, the emperor was tied to a stake and offered the choice of being burned alive or strangled by garrote if he converted to Christianity. In the hope of preserving his body for mummification, Atahuallpa chose the latter, and an iron collar was tightened around his neck until he died.