siege

We found this series on Netflix called True Crime. True stories dramatized, not documentaries. Very well done, thoughtfully written, we’re a fan/

But we saw this one called Siege the other night and we were both appalled.

It’s about a 50 hour standoff between New Zealand police and a maniac with a dozen guns.

Thing is, they’re proud of how they handled it. But my wife and I are Americans and we were tearing our hair out from Minute 15 on.

The episode begins with a sententious onscreen statement that “New Zealand is not a gun culture, and we will never be a gun culture.”

An awkward introduction to two hours of the sorriest police work you’ve ever seen or heard tell of.

This miserable 50 hour standoff would never have happened here. It would have been a simple takedown of a choleric pot grower, wrap him up, cuff him, put him in the cruiser, and next task please.

But we’re in New Zealand. We send three unarmed officers with a warrant to look for marijuana in a private house in a suburban neighborhood. They are admitted to the residence by the woman of the house, who generously shows them the abundant growing room off the main hallway. There’s a knock at the door. A seedy customer who is ushered in and told to sit down. Then another face at the door, the husband returning home. He is aggressive from the outset and no attempt is made to subdue his obvious ire. At this point everyone is in the smallish living room, three police officers, the wife, the customer, and the angry husband. Where, in NYC, the story would have ended. Two officers to shove the husband against the wall and place him safely under arrest.

But we’re in New Zealand, you see. The husband strides right past his wife, the customer, and the three police officers and goes sprinting down the hall, only to return in a moment with a high powered rifle. Which he uses to order the police officers out of his house. They stand there trying to reason with him until he actually cocks the rifle prefatory to shooting them. At which point the unarmed officers leave the house.

We could still have been good, right? Scuttle out of the house, get into the cop cars, and go blistering away, calling for backup. Right?

But we’re in New Zealand, under the command of what the final moments of the episode would deem as the sharpest point of the spear of New Zealand policery.

So what do you do when you’ve just been run out of the house by a man with a gun and an overflowing rage against cops. Well. If you’re in New Zealand, you three unarmed police officers stand around in the front yard debating what to do next.

Which is when the shooting starts. All three are hit in a matter of seconds. And the Siege has officially begun.

*************************************

In New Zealand, the bravest people are middle aged men and women, who defy gunfire to help the injured and trapped. The police, on the other hand, are very good at cowering and obeying the order not to shoot under any circumstances. Two thirds of the way through we are informed by chyron that 62 shots have been fired. Those of us who were counting already knew that none of those shots was fired by a police officer. They were busy doing their procedural thing. Yapping into walkie talkies, reassuring the Command Center that they were not planning to shoot anyone today, and explaining why it was so impossible to rescue the dead body of the best police officer in New Zealand. For 50 hours.

One officer did shoot, twice, when a gun barrel poked through an open doorway aimed at other officers. He put two rounds through the door and was immediately withdrawn from the field to report to the New Zealand version of Internal Affairs. Then he was told he couldn’t return to the field because if he fired on the offender again he could be charged with manslaughter.

Heard enough? They tried mighty hard to talk the perp out of committing suicide, but he was clearly bored at not being in an American cop movie and offed himself.

There was a huge funeral, bagpipes, and tears. End of episode. One dead hero cop, one dead offender, who might have gotten seven years in prison if he’d lived. Why bother?

Debate Music

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For him:

For her:

For Lester Holt, a classic from the black Johnny Mathis:

For Mark Cuban, the uncharismatic Trump wannabe:

For the much sharper and cooler TV audience than the MSM detects:

My wife’s gonna watch, but I’m a few episodes behind on HLN’s Forensic Files.

The REAL African American flag. After they're done with us white folks.

The REAL African American flag. After they’re done with us white folks.

I want Chinese food. Where I am. My country’s gone. The Eagles annihilated the Steelers yesterday. I don’t care.

Doesn’t matter who gets elected, really. It’s all been gone for a long time.

Why ‘Below the Turnpike’ matters. A brief glimpse of the past, from millionaires to below decks babysitters all living together.

Billie Holliday. Philly born and bred. Stay tuned.

Billie Holliday. Philly born and bred. Jazz Lives Matter. Stay tuned.

Except everything else matters too. Holliday was only a hooker on the side. She didn’t boast about it.

The African American esthetic. Aren't we proud of ourselves?

The African American esthetic. Aren’t we proud of ourselves?

I used to write as if people could read. They can’t. Bet you can’t get past the first paragraph of my first blog blog.

GlovesOff.blogspot.com

Shrinking attention spans. Mine has shrunk too. But I still know and remember way way way more than you.

Know what? I'd win. Even if we were doing it with 1911 .45s.

Know what? I’d win. Even if we were doing it with 1911 .45s.

Should I stay or should I go?

Yeah, I’ll say what no one else will. Do me in, Facebook. We’ve become a nation of niggas. Put that in your Tennessee corncob and smoke it, Glenn Reynolds. I’ll see you on the other side of Twitter and Pajama land.

Oh. You wanted to see a real gunfight? It can be arranged.

Oh. You wanted to see a real gunfight? It can be arranged.

Yeah. The way personal confrontations actually work. I could explain. Why my wife gave a huge horselaugh when I said I’d never tried to be an Alpha male.

“Who are you kidding?” She horselaughed.

But I am what I am and I love Billie Holliday, whoever you think I am.

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Where we’re headed, thanks to black racists and their eunuch apologists. Well summed up by Jeff Goldstein.

“Evidently the new progressive virtue signal is grousing about those who are grousing about rioters breaking windows and pulling people from cars for their overdue beatings.

“Because white privilege. Seriously. Though it’s phrased as “the System works for you, so you can’t judge!”

“Except that I can. To wit: If you’re mobbing around vandalizing and looting you’re a vandal and a thief. And if you’re a white, bespeckled progressive apologist for such behavior, you’re a condescending asshole who thinks it *progress* to treat entire groups of autonomous humans granted the blessing of free will as vessels for some ridiculous materialist historicism.

“These people aren’t pets, and luxuriating over your own white guilt isn’t noble. In fact, it’s self-serving, arrogant, and ostentatious.

“Your sympathy is rote. It’s canned. It’s abstract and fundamentally dishonest. Because were it not, you’d be celebrating those who use their free will and personal integrity to turn away from the wilding mobs, not giving faux-sociological cover to those who join them.

“You’re social Calvinists. To you, grace is pre-ordained — only instead of God granting it, it’s skin color or location that decides it. Which only cheapens the accomplishments of those who work hard to climb out of poverty or rise above racialism. It’s ugly fatalism disguised as intellectualism.

“But hey. Clap each other on the back and pretend you’re making a difference as entire neighborhoods burn. Then retire to your book clubs and your lily white coterie.

“I’ll send you a cookie.”

******************

Meanwhile, this guy is lionized.

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And this guy Clevenger is banned from his sport for criticizing the recent disgusting events in Charlotte.

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Because the only thing that will matter in the new union is sports and the stolen flat screen TVs we watch them on.

No, he's not a recently paroled serial killer. Guess again.

No, he’s not a recently paroled serial killer. Guess again.

On MSNBC yesterday, Bill Kristol pontificated at length about the reasons Trump should not be president. He expressed a strong desire for Trump to choke in the debates. He summed up by saying he thinks Trump knows he really shouldn’t be president.

When the admiring interviewer asked Kristol what he was going to do in November, he said, “I’m going to vote for the Republican Party’s nominee for president, Evan McMullin.”

Who he? you ask. He’s the splendidly charismatic looking fellow up top. You’ll thrill to his qualifications, which couldn’t represent more of a conservative character and background. He went to Brigham Young, which we all know is cool because being a Mormon helped Romney so much. And he went to Wharton for an MBA, proving he’s way out of Trump’s league when it comes to business. In fact, he actually managed to squeeze a couple of years of business experience (at Goldman Sachs) into his lifelong career of government and government-lobbyist jobs.

He’s a foreign policy expert because he was a CIA operative in the Middle East during our many successful recent adventures there. When the last helicopter left the last standing Green Zone building in Iraq, he came home to assume a position as the foreign policy adviser to the Republican house leadership. After the Syria and Libya triumphs, he was promoted to public policy director for the same brilliantly inspiring and effective group, in which capacity he conveyed the policy suggestions of numerous lobbyists, with the associated bulging envelopes to key members of the Republican Caucus.

Well, you can see why conservatives should rally around this almost memorable character. It’s high time his many years of service to the powers that be in DC and NY were rewarded with elected office. He’ll be zooming past Trump in the polls any day now. Don’t you agree?

She has perfect pink pads.

She has perfect pink pads.

So Edna is telling me to stop basking in self pity. But if I don’t pity me there’s no one else who will shoulder that burden. I can tell you that from six decades of bitter experience.

Oh well. We’re both up in the middle of the night because we’re worrying about someone else. We don’t usually have to, but right now we do.

Problem is, when you’re in big time worry mode, you want to think about something, anything else. But we’re at an impasse. When my wife gets up in the middle of the night she likes to watch Inspector Morse. I, on the other hand, hate that daft old bugger. Kind of like me without a sense of humor. The only thing on TV-type TV at this hour is low budget Canadian shows. What you get when you’re a cable network with a late night budget of $10 an hour.

The coffee tastes good. My wife has a lovely smile. Neither of us has a prescription for those mucho advertised designer drugs that have ten times more fatal side effects than benefits. So, all in all, We’re good here, thank you very much. Raebert is groaning though. He thinks night time is for sleeping. But what does he know? He’s just a deerhound.

Because she’s ready, she’s strong, she is W-O-M-A-N. Woman. On lots of empowering medication.

In this corner, the former First Lady of the United States, unindicted co-conspirator in literally dozen of federal legal fights. She’s never lost when there’s a ring judge who wants to see his wife and children alive again.

Lookin' Good. Lead,with the left, baby. But you already knew that.

Lookin’ Good. Lead with the left, baby. But you already knew that.

In this corner, Donald “The Jabberwock” Trump, master of misdirection and malaprop mayhem. If he can’t manhandle you, he’ll maul your manners and make men mewl with emasculated muppetitude.

Beware the Jabberwock my son. The jaws that bite, the claws that catch...

Beware the Jabberwock my son. The jaws that bite, the claws that catch…

And in the center of the ring, that really obnoxious announceeeeerrr!

The ref says “Protect yourself at all times. Touch gloves and go.”

The Jabberwock he crowed, “Beware the Jubjub bird, and shun the frumious bandersnatch. Unless you can lay the banderilious snatch out with a straight right hand.”

Damn. What a cad. You can't hit her when she's coughing a lung out. Oh. You can? Gee whiz.

Damn. What a cad. You can’t hit her when she’s coughing a lung out. Oh. You can? Gee whiz.

Debates to come.

To the victor belongs the spoils.

To the victor belongs the spoils.

She was going to win. Way ahead coming in for the finish after bicycling through rigged primaries, swimming through super delegate sharks trained not to attack Her, and finally sprinting for the finish with all the network announcers cheering her on to inevitable victory.

He was going to lose. He refused to schedule himself according to their rules. He had to run multiple races in a timeframe nobody else did. The coach of his principal competition told his boy not to worry; the deranged blond upstart would fold three quarters of the way down the track. From sheer exhaustion and inexperience.

Life is funny.

Sometimes you win clean. Sometimes you to try to win clean and fail. And, sometimes, you find a way to win ugly.

Do we seem weird and dumb to you? You don't know the half of it.

Do we seem weird and dumb to you? You don’t know the half of it.

Still think you own the votes of women, blacks, Hispanics, union members, gays, and transgenders? Think again sweethearts. Cassius Clay was a 7 to 1 underdog against Sonny Liston. Which is who you remind us of as a party. Mean, old, and slow with a rap sheet as long as your arm.

Tell the boss she can’t sleep through this election.

Bombings but not bombs.

Bombings but not bombs.

Because we are waiting. And your base ARE belong to us.

Governor Kravitz of Ohio

Governor Kravitz of Ohio

Jennifer Rubin, WAPO’s resident Judas Goat for the Hillary campaign is tickled pink by this exercise in dainty foot stamping by Governor Kravitz, who has been flirting like mad with both Obama and Hillary since Trump called her an incompetent cross-dresser:

“A top aide for John Kasich slammed Republican National Committee (RNC) chairman Reince Priebus for saying that former candidates who don’t support Donald Trump could be penalized in some way.

“Priebus said Sunday that former candidates who have refused to back Trump despite signing a pledge during the primaries “need to get on board” and that the RNC will look into potential penalties for withholding support.
“The idea of a greater purpose beyond oneself may be alien to political party bosses like Reince Priebus, but it is at the center of everything Governor Kasich does. He will not be bullied by a Kenosha political operative that is unable to stand up for core principles or beliefs,” John Weaver, a top aide for Kasich said in a statement.”

Oops. I blame Autocorrect. I put in the pic and then it went and changed the name on me. Sorry.

Oops again. I’m almost as careless and incompetent as Jennifer Rubin, aren’t I? Put in the wrong pic. Sorry. Here’s the right pic.

Governor Kravitz of Ohio

Governor Kravitz of Ohio

I know, I know. Don’t ask me. Ask Autocorrect. I’m late for elevenses at Starbucks.

Big guy with little dick.

Big guy with little dick.

No use for “journalists.” Mencken wasn’t a writer. He was a scribbler. Now he’s dead. That’s a good thing.

Raebert and Elliott. One idolized the other. The other doesn't care.

Raebert and Elliott. One idolizes the other. The other doesn’t care. At all.

Life can be like that. Two alphas. But some alphas are more equal than others. Any bigger lessons here, Jonah and Kevin? No. Don’t push it, says the Alpha of Alphas, the writer who doesn’t pretend to be a journalist. Only a seer.

John Facenda. My aunt, who moved to Ohio, said, "the only thing I really miss is John Facenda and that soothing Italian gangster voice."

John Facenda. My aunt, who moved to Chagrin Falls, Ohio, said, “The only thing I really miss from Philly is John Facenda and that soothing Italian gangster voice.”

Few people realize that the glory of the NFL originated in New Jersey, where an entrepreneur named Sabol made the young league mythic by setting game films to music and literate voiceover narration. The keystone was a man named John Facenda, a Philadelphia news anchorman who had, gasp, talent for looking at film, reading a script, and turning those things into poetry.

Why this post? My wife mentioned him when I showed a pic of the hottest weather girl in Philadelphia. So, yeah, I’m old. But I’d rather have Facenda back (or his NFL Films successor Harry Kalas) than a ninny in a skintight dress.

But I grant you she IS hot.

He was a cool cat.

He was a cool cat.

My girl Monica finally told me the story of his end.

“Awwww. I really love orange tabbies. They just have a different type of personality than other cats. Did you know what happened to Tigger? He was The Survivor. He outlasted all the cats. He disappeared a few days before Hurricane Irene hit. The day of, we got a call from our vet that Tigger was found by a man across town. I went to the address. He was disheveled and gaunt. I took him home and he lived the rest of what few days he had in my room. Safe from the storm and safe from harm. He was welcome to sleep in my bed but I think he preferred the cat bed I supplied for him. He constantly cried. Not to be let outside, but to be held and cuddled. He knew he was dying, but we didn’t. Yeah, we knew he was old (approximately 17), but we didn’t know what was happening to him on the inside. I left for Georgia a few days after Hurricane Irene. I was afraid to ask about Tigger while I was away. I guess in my heart I knew I was losing him. When I got home he was gone. Mom said one night he kept crying and crying for company. Frederick, Mom’s fiancé, went into my room and slept the whole night on my bed with Tigger lying on his chest. He said Tigger purred all night with contentment. The next day, they took him to the vet. The vet confirmed Tigger was in kidney failure. They put him to sleep. It made me so sad and mad I didn’t get to say goodbye. But I was happy to know he didn’t die alone in that hurricane like he had probably intended.”

They all die. And we never forget them.

They all die. And we never forget them.

And my girl can write. How about that?

Challenging God. Every day.

Challenging God. Every day.

Don’t know how to couch this. My basic view of actors corresponds to Hitchcock’s. They’re cattle. But Walken is different. I’ve learned from him. He taught me how to read my own writing out loud. That staccato off-balance rhythm is exactly how I write. Enables me to read what I wrote, the perfectly right way.

The odd thing is that I had a long time mental block about his name. Couldn’t remember his name. Denial. He was an icon to me. So I couldn’t remember his name. How pitiful is that?

Better than Brando. Marlon was always acting in a movie different from anyone else. So too with Christopher. But unlike Brando, Walken’s other movie was always better than the ones the others were making.

And the man could dance. White people can dance, you know. You just have to see into their more complicated souls to appreciate their moves.

You know you know you wish you'd gone to Harvard or your kids did. Don't lie. It's important.

You know you know you wish you’d gone to Harvard or your kids did. Don’t lie. It’s important.

Nobody can sing like this. Unless they go to Harvard.

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Beloved of God. My wife telling me to kneel to Facebook. I do so for her. Put the jpg pic up top, she says. Facebook likes that, not videos. And I say, Cadillac of the Skies.

I’d put up with him for months. His wry insults about Mozart’s ninths. His clear preference for this kind of pretentious nonsense.

So When he tossed off his umpteenth insult about Mozart one late autumn day, I totally tore him a new asshole about the relation between music and deserving to live. He resigned the next day. I’ve been told I can be, well, like a saber in your eyes. Thing is, I was way out of line, unless I wasn’t. He had been formally trained in graduate school about how to write classical music nobody could listen to. Why he, and I, were working in the music department at the back of a bookstore. Our tiff meant nothing. Like all of modern classical music.

It takes a Mozart to know one.

I talked to Raebert about Psmith and him and me. Explained how I loved both of them. Then he looked me in the eye and licked my hand. Seven animal behavioralists immediately wrote peer reviewed papers explaining that Raebert is an idiot. Cool. What this has to do with Mozart I leave to you. But it does have to do with Mozart. Figure it out.

Before some limp wristed Brit comes in to accuse me of “whingeing,” a word that sounds to me like fingernails on a blackboard, I want to explain that the previous post was tongue in cheek. (Billy Idol has a whole video devoted to tongue in cheek.) I don’t mind if you’re fatigued, worn down, dozing, half dead with boredom or despair, and unable to summon even an ounce of piss and vinegar. Not at all.

I don’t need an audience. All these books I’ve been publishing all of a sudden? Kept them to myself all these years. Writing them was the point. Not taking a bow on stage. So go on about your business. I’ll be fine right here. Dancing with myself.

When you dance with yourself, there are no critics.

When you dance with yourself, there are no critics.

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