Patterico's Pontifications


A Shooting in Harlem

Filed under: Crime — DRJ @ 10:05 pm

[Guest post by DRJ]

This was a feature story in Thursday’s New York Times in which a 72-year-old store owner shot 4 robbers, killing 2, who tried to rob his Harlem store:

“There were no customers in the store, only Mr. Augusto and two employees, a man and a woman. The police said the invaders announced a holdup, approached the two employees and tried to place plastic handcuffs on them. The male employee, a 35-year-old known in the community as J. B., struggled with the gunman, who then hit him on the head with the pistol.

Watching it happen, Mr. Augusto, whom neighborhood friends call Gus, rose from a chair 20 to 30 feet away and took out a loaded Winchester 12-gauge pump-action shotgun with a pistol-grip handle. The police said he bought it after a robbery 30 years ago.

Mr. Augusto, who has never been in trouble with the law, fired three blasts in rapid succession, the police said, although Vernon McKenzie, working at an Internet company next door, heard only two booms, loud enough to send him rushing to a window, where he heard someone shout: “You’re dead! You’re dead!”

JammieWearingFools has the rest of the story.


Demagoguing the Issues

Filed under: Obama — DRJ @ 9:01 pm

[Guest post by DRJ]

When Barack Obama was in Mexico at the North American summit, he referred to American opponents of amnesty for illegal aliens as “demagogues.” The Yahoo-American Heritage dictionary defines ‘demagogue’ as “a leader who obtains power by means of impassioned appeals to the emotions and prejudices of the populace.”

Fast forward to today in Grand Junction, Colorado, where President Obama made a personal appeal to the American people to overhaul health care:

Now, it’s personal. President Barack Obama invoked his own anguish over the death of a loved one as he challenged the debunked notion that Democratic efforts to overhaul the nation’s health care would include “death panels.”

I just lost my grandmother last year. I know what it’s like to watch somebody you love, who’s aging, deteriorate and have to struggle with that,” an impassioned Obama told a crowd as he spoke of Madelyn Payne Dunham. He took issue with “the notion that somehow I ran for public office or members of Congress are in this so they can go around pulling the plug on grandma.”

Barack Obama, demagogue.


Maria Isabel’s Blog Entry on the SJL Town Hall Meeting (Updated)

Filed under: Obama — DRJ @ 3:48 pm

[Guest post by DRJ]

Patterico’s most recent post on Sheila Jackson Lee’s 8/11/09 town hall meeting links an entry at Maria Isabel’s Organizing for America blog that summarizes this event. This is where Roxana Mayer claimed to be a doctor and it is also the event where Sheila Jackson Lee talked on her cell phone while a constituent asked a question.

The text of Maria Isabel’s post is below the fold but this is my summary of Maria Isabel’s views on that event:

  • Sheila Jackson Lee did a good job listening to the speakers (presumably even when she was talking on her cell phone).
  • Maria Isabel did a good job keeping a straight face as she listened to the “confused and angry audience.”
  • The 3rd woman sitting with Maria and Roxana may be Julie.
  • One more thing: The town hall meetings are being organized by “our reps,” presumably Organizing for America since the statement was written by OfA rep Maria Isabel on a blog and since the following day’s SJL event (8/12/2009 @ Tidwell Community Center) specifically lists Organizing for America as the host.

    UPDATE: The Lone Star Times continues to follow Sheila Jackson Lee’s events (great job, LST). Here’s her newest explanation of that cell phone call she took while a constituent was speaking:

    “Another day, another town hall meeting. Rep. Sheila Jackson Lee’s latest meeting was definitely more lively than the first one. And she had some breaking news. Remember that cell phone call she took while Tracy Miller was asking her a question? Well, Rep. Jackson Lee now says that the leadership of the House has set up a hot line for immediate, line by line answers to the bill and that is who she was talking to.

    Gotta love her.”

    Lots more at the LST link, including this post where Tracy Miller issues a challenge to SJL.

    — DRJ


    Identified: Another Front-Row Town Hall Attendee Also Member of Obama Campaign Team; UPDATE: 220 People Signed Up to Attend the Next Event Through

    Filed under: Obama — Patterico @ 10:27 am

    In addition to phony doctor Roxana Mayer, the other woman next to Maria Isabel in the front row of Sheila Jackson Lee’s town hall meeting was also a member of the Obama campaign team. In Maria Isabel’s Flickr photo album titled Obamaleadership we see picture of the lady here:

    Obama Leadership

    She is third from the left, with the “Obama ’08” T-shirt. And here she is at the town hall meeting, next to Che Guevara admirer and Obama campaign office chief Maria Isabel:

    Obama Leadership at Town Hall Meeting

    So the front row was occupied by the phony doctor (also an Organizing for America leader), Maria “Che” Isabel (head of a campaign office), and another member of Isabel’s “Obamaleadership” team.

    And we’re the Astroturfers.

    Thanks to a perceptive reader.

    UPDATE: From Maria Isabel’s Organizing for America blog at, a notice regarding Sheila Jackson Lee’s town hall meeting from August 12 (as well as a description of her attendance at the earlier town hall meeting [NOTE: The event attended by Roxana Mayer, Maria Isabel and the 3rd woman was Tuesday, August 11 — DRJ per Patterico):

    Maria Isabel Blog

    As well as a link to another page at indicating that 220 people signed up to go to the event:

    220 People Sign Up

    Remember: we’re the Astroturfers!

    Sen. Jim Webb Secures American’s Release From Myanmar

    Filed under: International,Obama — DRJ @ 9:32 am

    [Guest post by DRJ]

    Senator Jim Webb, the chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee’s East Asia and Pacific Affairs Subcommittee, has traveled to Myanmar and successfully negotiated the release of American captive John Yettaw:

    “Yettaw is to be officially deported Sunday, when he will fly with Webb on a military plane to Bangkok, according to a statement from Webb’s office.

    The 53-year-old from Falcoln, Missouri, has been held in Insein, Myanmar’s largest prison, notorious for widespread torture and other abuse of both political prisoners and ordinary criminals.”

    Yettaw had been sentenced to seven years in prison “for swimming secretly to the residence of detained democracy leader Aung San Suu Kyi.” Webb also visited with Suu Kyi, which the AP described as a rare visit.

    This is great news for the Yettaw family but it sounds like the U.S. government is handing another in a growing line of PR and engagement victories to a totalitarian regime:

    “While Washington has traditionally been Myanmar’s strongest critic, applying political and economic sanctions against the junta, President Barack Obama’s new ambassador for East Asia, Kurt Campbell, recently said the administration is interested in easing its policy of isolation. Webb has said that “affirmative engagement” could bring the most change to Myanmar, concerning those who think a hard line is the best approach.

    Britain’s ambassador to the United Nations suggested Webb’s visit could help persuade the junta to free Suu Kyi.
    Myanmar has been under military rule since 1962. The junta called elections in 1990 but refused to honor the results when Suu Kyi’s party won overwhelmingly.”

    Ad hoc diplomacy has become more common in the last 20-odd years, especially in Democratic Administrations. It’s a way for the United States and the Administration to save face if things don’t turn out well but it also undermines the authority of the State Department and the Administration itself. (Wonder what Hillary Clinton thinks about this?) It also sets a bad precedent if the result involves American concessions and international approval.

    But it does generate good humanitarian PR.

    — DRJ

    Hannity Mentions Patterico

    Filed under: Blogging Matters,Politics — DRJ @ 9:32 am

    [Guest post by DRJ]

    Fox’s Sean Hannity mentioned Patterico’s Pontifications on his broadcast last night. A friend told me about this so I watched Hannity’s replay and there it was, about 25 minutes into the show. The segment concerned Roxana Mayer’s appearance at the Sheila Jackson Lee town hall. Hannity even used a variation of Patterico’s clever title: She’s not a doctor but she plays one at town hall meetings.

    In a related matter, Sheila Jackson Lee told CNN’s Rick Sanchez that a video that showed her talking on a cell phone while a constituent asked a question may have been a “doctored video.” H/T to Heather Hogue at the Phoenix Republican Examiner, who posted a video of the Sanchez interview, and wonders:

    (Speaking of doctors, I wonder if Dr. Mayer would stand by Jackson-Lee and cry ‘doctor’? Oh wait, she’s already done that).

    — DRJ

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