ARMIES OF THE NIGHT: Rahm Emanuel & The Death Squads Of The Chicago Police Department

Chicago police fired a Taser at this man and then dragged him down a hallway. Shortly after, he was dead. https://t.co/QUQmny8g6Q — AJ+ (@ajplus) December 9, 2015 NEW YORK TIMES: The Chicago police, facing almost daily protests and a newly announced Justice Department investigation, released footage Monday night showing a 38-year-old black man being shocked by a Taser and dragged down a hallway by officers in 2012. The man, Philip Coleman, later died at a hospital. A county medical examiner noted trauma on Mr. Coleman’s body, but said his death had been caused by an allergic reaction to a medication given […]

LORD OF THE BROS: Talking Comedy, Tragedy, Entourage & Louis CK With Actor Jeremy Piven

via TWITTER BY JONATHAN VALANIA “What We Talk About When We Talk About Love,” arguably Raymond Carver’s most beloved and depressive short story, is about a broken down, bottomed-out alcoholic supervising a yard sale on his front lawn where he’s selling off the sad pieces of his shattered life, and it’s not really clear if he’s selling off his belongings to so he can start his life over or because he plans to end his life. Hence the tantalizing ambiguity of the title — Carver doesn’t tell you what we talk about when we talk about love, that’s for the […]

WORTH REPEATING: Being Michael Avenatti

  NEW YORK TIMES: Neither Avenatti’s mother nor father graduated from college, and they expected their only son to support himself from an early age. (Avenatti has two half-siblings, from his mother’s first marriage.) In 1989, he worked part time for Representative Dick Gephardt, a Democrat, and enrolled in St. Louis University, before transferring to the University of Pennsylvania as a political-science major. Photos from that time depict a scrawny kid; his hair is dark and full, his glare preternaturally confident. “I used to call him the little man with the brown briefcase,” Avenatti’s first wife, Christine Avenatti-Carlin, told me. […]

WORD: The Case Against The Case Against Bernie

  HUFFINGTON POST: If you want to dismiss the Sanders campaign, you can choose between two lines of attack. You can join Paul Krugman at the New York Times, asserting that governing is too hard for an idealistic democratic socialist: Sanders doesn’t seem built for compromise, and his proposals lack detail. And governing, as opposed to campaigning, is all about compromise and detail. Endorsing Hillary Clinton in the Democratic primary, the Times editorial board marveled, “Mrs. Clinton has done her homework on pretty much any issue you care to name.” Homework, you see. That’s the ticket; not staying out after […]

INTRODUCING: The Don Lemon Watch

  If you are one of those people who watch CNN you’re a better man than I, and that’s just not because I’m a woman. Somewhere along the way CNN went from 24/7 pre-Internet news ticker to non-stop eye roll-inducing exasperation factory. Much of the blame for that can be placed on the shoulders of Don Lemon, former Philly news talking head and currently Twitter’s favorite whipping boy, who plays Tweedle Dee to Wolfie Blitzer’s Tweedle Dumb. There he is tsk tsk-ing Ferguson protesters for the whiff of marijuana smoke in the air — even donning a gas mask, god […]

FLAG OF OUR FATHERS: Let It Burn

  NPR: In December 1860, South Carolina was the first state to secede from the Union just months after Abraham Lincoln, from the anti-slavery Republican Party, was elected president. In April 1861, the first shots of the Civil War were fired at Fort Sumter, S.C. Ten other states would eventually follow South Carolina in secession, forming the Confederate States of America. However, of the three flags the Confederacy would go on to adopt, none are the Confederate flag that is traditionally recognized today. The “Stars and Bars” flag, currently the subject of controversy, was actually the battle flag of Gen. […]

30 YEARS A SLAVE: America’s Longest Serving Death Row Inmate Is Free At Last, Free At Last

  ASSOCIATED PRESS: A man who spent nearly 26 years on death row in Louisiana walked free of prison Tuesday, hours after a judge approved the state’s motion to vacate the man’s murder conviction in the 1983 killing of a jeweler. Glenn Ford, 64, had been on death row since August 1988 in connection with the death of 56-year-old Isadore Rozeman, a Shreveport jeweler and watchmaker for whom Ford had done occasional yard work. Ford had always denied killing Rozeman. Ford walked out the maximum security prison at Angola on Tuesday afternoon, said Pam Laborde, a spokeswoman for Louisiana’s Department […]

RIP: Michael Hasting’s Greatest Hits

[Illustration by ALEX FINE] As you may have heard by now, fearless investigative reporter Michael Hastings was killed in a car accident in Los Angeles early Tuesday morning. He will be missed. Few other reporters on the national security beat — where access is often traded for compromise and kid gloves treatment —  wrote so boldly and fearlessly about the dark side of the military industrial complex moon. In tribute, we are re-running some of his greatest hits: FOX NEWS: The top U.S. war commander in Afghanistan apologized Tuesday for an interview in which he said he felt betrayed by […]

SH*T MY UNCLE SAYS: Let Them Eat Cake

  BY WILLIAM C. HENRY “And that’s all they’re going to get.”  Quoth the man who would be President upon being asked  by a reporter about his lack of customary disclosure of several years tax returns as well as his reaction to criticism of the conflicting paper trail surrounding his involvement with Bain Capital, plus his failure to explain in any up-front manner the justification for his ownership of off-shore bank accounts in the Bahamas, Cayman Islands, Switzerland, and elsewhere. Never before in the annals of presidential campaigning has a major-party candidate so blithely shot such a tall and rigid […]

FRINGE REVIEW: The Bacchae

BY BRANDON LAFVING The Theater Collective entered a new, modern translation of Euripides’ The Bacchae, into the record. They pulled on a number of events and artifacts from recent history to connect Philly audiences to the masterpiece. The troupe is the brain-baby of one of the most prestigious authorial couples of Philadlephia, the eminent Lili Bita, poetess, actress, author, and Robert Zaller, author and professor of history at Drexel University. Zaller translated and adapted The Bacchae, while Bita plays the deranged/bereaved Agave, bewitched murderer of her own child. Original author of the script, Euripides, was one of the most prolific […]

WARREN BUFFET: Take My Money — Please!

WARREN BUFFET: Last year my federal tax bill — the income tax I paid, as well as payroll taxes paid by me and on my behalf — was $6,938,744. That sounds like a lot of money. But what I paid was only 17.4 percent of my taxable income — and that’s actually a lower percentage than was paid by any of the other 20 people in our office. Their tax burdens ranged from 33 percent to 41 percent and averaged 36 percent. If you make money with money, as some of my super-rich friends do, your percentage may be a […]

THIS IS HOW MARXISTS GET MADE: A Unified Theory Of Everything That Is Wrong With America

JOSEPH STIGLITZ: It’s no use pretending that what has obviously happened has not in fact happened. The upper 1 percent of Americans are now taking in nearly a quarter of the nation’s income every year. In terms of wealth rather than income, the top 1 percent control 40 percent. Their lot in life has improved considerably. Twenty-five years ago, the corresponding figures were 12 percent and 33 percent. One response might be to celebrate the ingenuity and drive that brought good fortune to these people, and to contend that a rising tide lifts all boats. That response would be misguided. […]