Patterico's Pontifications


Chappaquiddick 50 Years Later: That Time When Ted Kennedy’s Dreams Died

Filed under: General — Dana @ 2:32 pm

[guest post by Dana]

Here’s how USA Today opens their report on the 50th anniversary of Chappaquiddick:

The crash ended a young woman’s life, and with it, a man’s White House dreams.

Dammit, Mary Jo, why couldn’t you have been a better swimmer!

Dammit, Mary Jo, you denied America President Ted Kennedy!

Dammit, Mary Jo, why didn’t you say no when he offered you a ride home from the party!

Dammit, Mary Jo, why couldn’t you figure out how to get out of the car? He did.

Dream Killer.

The article continues:

U.S. Sen. Edward M. Kennedy’s Oldsmobile sedan veered off a narrow bridge on Chappaquiddick Island, an extension of the resort island of Martha’s Vineyard off Massachusetts, and plunged into a moonlit pond 50 years ago Thursday. His passenger, 28-year-old Mary Jo Kopechne, drowned.

His sedan “veered off a narrow bridge” all by itself apparently. She “drowned”? That’s all? How could they know for sure, given that there was no autopsy performed? Especially as John Farrar, the scuba diver who recovered Mary Jo Kopechne’s body from the partially submerged vehicle, believed that she suffocated.

Incredibly, this:

Kennedy, 37, survived, but his presidential ambitions did not.


Leslie Leland, who served as foreman of the grand jury that investigated the incident, had this to say:

Now 79, Leland was a young pharmacist on the island when he was swept up in the aftermath. He recalls getting death threats and 24-hour police protection, and says he is still frustrated by the judge’s refusal to subpoena anyone who was at the party or share key investigative documents — stymieing the grand jury’s efforts to determine whether Kennedy had been drinking.

“If we’d been allowed to do our job, there would have been an indictment and a request to have a jury trial,” he said. “Justice wasn’t served. There were so many discrepancies, but we weren’t allowed to do our jobs to get to the truth — whatever the truth may have been.

“I was young, and I believed in the system. I believed everyone played by the same rules. I learned they don’t.”

And is he ever so right.

This Kennedy’s public address about Chappaquiddick:

And here is the AP’s tweet about the 50th anniversary of Chappaquiddick. Again with that mysterious self-driving car:


(Cross-posted at The Jury Talks Back.)


Iran Seizes British Tanker(s) — UPDATED

Filed under: International — DRJ @ 1:25 pm

[Headlines from DRJ]

Iran ‘hijacks’ two British oil tankers with dozens of crew members on board:

A British tanker has been seized by Iranian authorities as the diplomatic crisis between Iran and the West deepens.

Iran has confirmed that the Stena Impero – carrying 23 crew members – was intercepted in the Strait of Hormuz

The second vessel, the Mesdar Crude Oil Tanker, was reportedly stopped before being allowed to continue on its original route.

Trump: ‘We’ll See What Happens’ After Iran Seizes Two Oil Tankers:

“American commercial ship passing through the Strait of Hormuz is being protected by U.S. military aircraft, reports CNN. The Pentagon believes the tanker captures were premeditated by Iran.”

Trump quoted as saying:

“We heard one, we heard two” of #Iran seizing oil tankers today, says @POTUS in reply to my question. But he declines to say if this crosses a line and how US will respond except to say there’s an agreement US has with #UK on maritime security.

UPDATE: Deborah Haynes, Sky News:

BREAKING: Britain advises all UK shipping to stay away from Strait of Hormuz for an “interim period”.
UK also says its response to seizure of British-flagged tanker by Iran will be “considered and robust”. There will be “serious consequences” if situation is not resolved.

BUT …CNN — “UK Foreign Secretary Jeremy Hunt says the UK is “not looking at military options” at this time.”


Political Common Ground

Filed under: Politics — DRJ @ 11:00 am

[Headline from DRJ]

This is from two days ago when Democrats were struggling to deal with President Trump’s rhetoric about “The Squad”:

The Memo: Democrats debate Trump response – ‘Being righteous and losing sucks’:

President Trump is set to ramp up his rhetoric at a rally in Greenville, N.C., on Wednesday evening.

Democrats, in turn, are weighing how to respond.

‘Being righteous and losing sucks’

This is a very pragmatic thought. Principles and morality seem unimportant, maybe even stupid, when we are desperate and our focus is solely on survival or winning. Pragmatism gets us from where we are to where we want to be, efficiently and without angst.

Do some Republicans and some Democrats have this attitude in common now?


Republican Senators Call For Antifa To Be Designated As A Hate Group

Filed under: General — Dana @ 8:36 am

[guest post by Dana]

In the aftermath of recent violent attacks by Antifa, including an attack on journalist Andy Ngo in Portland last month, which left him with a brain hemorrhage, and the recent firebomb attack on an immigration center in Tacoma, Sens. Ted Cruz and Bill Cassidy of Lousiana have introduced a resolution to designate Antifa a hate group:

“Antifa is a group of hateful, intolerant radicals who pursue their unhinged agenda through aggressive violence,” said Cruz, who filed the measure alongside Republican Sen. Bill Cassidy of Lousiana. “Time and time again their actions have demonstrated that their only purpose is to inflict harm on those who oppose their views.”

“The hate and violence they spread must be stopped, and I am proud to introduce this resolution with Senator Cassidy to properly identify what Antifa are: domestic terrorists,” he added.

Sen. Cassidy wrote:

Antifa is a domestic terror organization. This is a group of hateful, intolerant radicals pursuing their extreme agenda through violence. They are masked bigots, attacking others b/c they don’t agree with their ideas. The time to stop Antifa is NOW!

Here is how the resolution reads:


Unsurprisingly, the most visible group monitoring hate groups, still refuses to designate Antifa as one:

The SPLC condemns violence in all its forms, including the violent acts of far-left street movements like antifa. But the propensity for violence, though present in many hate groups, is not among the criteria for listing. Also, antifa groups do not promote hatred based on race, religion, ethnicity, sexual orientation or gender identity.

On a sidenote, in light of Antifa violence, and the recent attack on Andy Ngo by Antifa, Portland is now considering an anti-mask law:

City leaders in Portland, Ore., are considering making it illegal for protesters to wear masks in an attempt to address violent clashes between left-wing and right-wing activists, the latest of which occurred a few weeks ago.

Police Chief Danielle Outlaw first called for an antimask law after dueling protests on June 29, where a conservative writer said he was assaulted by members of the left-wing group Antifa, who frequently wear masks… “A lot of people are emboldened because they know they can’t be identified,” Ms. Outlaw said at a news conference.

A spokeswoman for Portland Mayor Ted Wheeler said city officials have had initial discussions about outlawing the wearing of a mask to commit a crime or escape identification in the commission of a crime. Mr. Wheeler “wants to weigh his options thoroughly and hear concerns from community leaders before making a decision,” said Eileen Park, the spokeswoman.

Oregon’s ACLU is objecting to any potential anti-mask laws, citing First Amendment concerns:

“A policy that prohibits wearing a mask to a protest not only risks chilling First Amendment-protected activities, particularly for those who wear ‘masks’ for political and religious reasons, it misses the issue entirely,” spokeswoman Sarah Armstrong said in an email. “Behavior is the issue, not the mask.”

[Ed. I’ve bolded some portions where either the selected wording and/or actual claim need to be challenged… i.e. conservative writer “said” he was assaulted – he didn’t just say, he was. There is plenty of video confirming it happened…]

(Cross-posted at The Jury Talks Back.)


13-year-old Iowa Boy on Trial for Attempted Murder

Filed under: Law — DRJ @ 7:48 am

[Headline from DRJ]

Did Iowa 12-year-old pull the trigger to get attention or to kill his teacher?

A jury of seven men and five women will decide if Luke Andrews, 13, intended to kill his teacher in a North Scott Junior High School classroom last August.

In their closing arguments, prosecutor Julie Walton and defense attorney Melanie Thwing agreed on Tuesday that Andrews, then 12, pointed a loaded Smith & Wesson .22-caliber in the face of his seventh-grade social studies teacher, Dawn Spring, and pulled the trigger the morning of Aug. 31, the fifth day of the school year.

They disagree about whether he intended to kill her.

‘I accepted the fact that I was going to die’: Teachers recall boy pointing gun in class:

Friday morning, [teacher Dawn] Spring took the witness stand. She testified that once MacDonald got her attention in the classroom, Andrews was holding the gun in the direction of other students.

Spring said she walked toward Andrews, “in hopes to distract him from the students,” and said, “something to the effect of, ‘Oh man, it looks like you’re having a really bad day.'”

Andrews walked toward Spring, and they faced each other near the front of the class, about 3 or 4 feet apart, Spring said.

“As he approaches me and we come face to face, he says nothing. I say nothing. He puts the gun up at face level and pulls the trigger,” Spring said. “I thought I heard an audible click from the gun, and then he turned the gun and kind of looked at it funny, like, ‘that’s weird,’ kind of a look at it, then he put it up in my face a second time.”

The verdict:

Jurors convicted Luke Andrews of assault while displaying a dangerous weapon, carrying weapons on school grounds, and assault with intent to inflict serious injury. They declined to convict him of attempted murder, instead selecting the second assault charge from a list of lesser, included offenses available to them, along with acquittal.


Follow Up: Hush Money Prosecution

Filed under: Law,Politics — DRJ @ 7:11 am

[Headline from DRJ]

Prosecutors weighed DOJ policy blocking indictment of a sitting president in closing Trump hush-money probe.

He did it. He can’t be prosecuted because he is President. “The investigation is over.”


Powered by WordPress.

Page loaded in: 0.0842 secs.