The tribe and the cult will leave you insane!

FRIDAY, JULY 12, 2013

Hare Krishna, Hare Digby: The tribe will render you insane.

Attempts to keep faith with tribal narrative will leave you sounding insane. Case in point:

The following text appears in Salon, in a new piece by Roxane Gay which was posted today. The highlighted text is insane:
GAY (7/12/13): Zimmerman was a neighborhood volunteer watchman in his gated community in Sanford, FL. For whatever reason, he wanted to protect his community. Perhaps he was as susceptible as any of us are to aspiring toward heroism.

Nothing is ever simple. Since the beginning, the Zimmerman case has also been about race—and when a high profile case is about race, tension is inevitable. Very little about the conversation surrounding this case has been rational. Zimmerman claims he shot Martin in self-defense but Martin was unarmed, carrying a pack of Skittles and a bottle of iced tea. What, precisely, was Zimmerman defending himself from? This is one of the many questions for which we will never have answers.
It’s interesting that we liberals can’t imagine a reason why a person would “want to protect his community” without turning to variants of the standard snark about being a wannabe cop.

That said, the highlighted text is insane. It’s even more insane when Salon puts it in print. A nation can no longer hope to exist when its tribes are prepared to tolerate this form of self-imposed blindness.

You may think Zimmerman should be found guilty. You may think he wasn’t engaged in allowable self-defense. But: “What was he defending himself from?”

At this late date, asking that question that way is insane. It’s a form of tribal lunacy.

One step down the lunacy ladder is the account offered by Digby in the post excerpted below. There’s a word for this kind of account—dishonest:
DIGBY (7/11/13): The facts show that George Zimmerman armed himself with a gun loaded with hollow point bullets and ended up killing an unarmed teenager who was just out buying some snacks. How that happened is disputed but to me it's obvious that when you strap on a gun, go looking for trouble and end up stalking and killing an unarmed 17 year old, you've done something wrong. To me, the carrying of that gun morally requires that he be held liable in some way for the unarmed Trayvon's death.

But, as this article shows, the law in Florida says something different. It says that he was legally entitled to carry that gun with hollow point bullets, chase down someone he thought looked suspicious and then kill him in "self-defense" when they got into a tussle. In this trial the state must prove beyond a reasonable doubt that Zimmerman did not shoot Trayvon Martin in self-defense. It makes your head hurt a little bit.

[...]

Chasing a "suspicious" person you know nothing about in the dark with a gun loaded with hollow point bullets should mitigate against whatever we might normally think of as defending yourself. But in a country that allows scared little men like George Zimmerman to make up for their shortcomings by carrying a great big gun, loaded for bear, as if that's not dangerous in itself, means I suppose we'll have to get used to this kind of vigilantism. If the law allows this, we're basically saying that people can conceal a gun, provoke a fight and then shoot someone dead in "self-defense."
Why do we call that dishonest? For starters:

In just her first paragraph, Digby tells us that Martin was “unarmed” three separate times. That statement is true, of course.

But referring to the way Martin died, she is only willing to say this: “How that happened is disputed.”

That is also true! But in one of the major disputed accounts, Martin was banging Zimmerman’s head onto concrete moments before he was killed.

Digby isn’t allowed to say that! In thrall to the tribe, she just keeps repeating her mantra: “unarmed.” Refusing to tell you what has been charged, she refers to the fight as “a tussle!”

Was Martin “just out buying some snacks?” At one point in the evening, yes! But if Zimmerman’s account is accurate, Martin moved well past the point of “buying some snacks” at a later point. Unless you are in thrall to the tribe and its rigid narratives.

Like Digby, we weren’t present in Sanford that evening. We can’t exactly tell you what happened.

We can imagine various possibilities, in which different people behave very badly. But Digby, being in thrall to the tribe, is allowed to imagine one thing.

As they used to say when they jingled those bells, “Hare Krishna! Hare hare!”

Digby starts with two key words—“the facts.” She then lists a string of facts not in evidence:

It hasn’t been shown that Zimmerman tried to “chase down” Martin. It hasn’t been shown that he “stalked” Martin, unless you just enjoy servicing pleasure centers.

Meanwhile, did Zimmerman “provoke a fight?” It’s possible! But by his account, he was simply walking back to his truck when he was confronted, then punched, by Martin. If Digby knew that claim wasn’t true, shouldn’t she have gone to Sanford and shared her knowledge with others?

Throughout history, the tribe and the cult have made people insane. But oh, how good that certainty feels! Hare Krishna! Hare Digby!

It's not a good thing when we libs go insane. We liberals should not form a cult.

84 comments:

  1. Well, except there's a difference between a neighborhood watch and a wanna be cop. I thought the state laid the difference out pretty well yesterday, but then I wasn't looking for liberal-tribalism- bias from a 30 year state prosecutor.
    Zimmerman shot "the suspect" in "the torso". He wasn't clear on what "the suspect" was suspected of doing, but then he doesn't have to follow police procedure, either, so he's in some fuzzy middle ground where he just makes these calls himself. Bad call on that one.
    He meant well! I'll be sure and give him points for that, lest I be as liberally biased as the prosecutor.

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    1. Z was offered a cop-like position. It included a car and a uniform. He turned it down. His decision proves he was not a cop wannabe.

      BTW there never was any evidence that he was a cop wannabe. This is just one of the myths that was made up about Z.

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    2. The wannabe cop stuff began with the PR guy who works for Ben Crump. They had to change the positive image of NW which is sponsored by the DOJ and local law enforcement into something evil.

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  2. For Digby, the only thing Zimmerman could have done to make his crime worse would have been to use a taser instead of those hollow-point bullets.

    Digby wants to protect innocent youth from tragedy by banning guns. I suggest we also protect them by teaching them values more consistent with mainstream society, so that when they have time on their hands they don't engage in behavior likely to result in conflict with others, especially when they find themselves in more diverse communities.

    Last month I saw Snoop "Lion" interviewed by Conan. He described stealing from hosts while attending house parties during his early days as a celebrity. Clearly expressed were his sense of otherness from the other people at the party, and also his sense of entitlement allowing him to take their belongings, regardless of whether he needed or wanted them. No one (not Snoop, not Andy, not Conan) expressed any sense that his behavior was wrong or even inappropriate -- I suppose our collective guilt somehow makes all of our possessions his and then some. Without clear boundaries and explicit teaching that stealing is not part of personal or racial liberation, how will kids like Trayvon stay out of trouble?

    It doesn't surprise me that our media has no clear sense of what is right and wrong in this encounter either, given that no matter what Trayvon did, he is in the right, because he is black and dead, while there is nothing Zimmerman could have done, nothing that might have happened to him that would exonerate him in their minds, because he is alive and a "white Hispanic".

    Yes, this is about race and about what members of a previously disadvantaged group believe they are owed forever because of our history as a nation. A dialog about race should discuss whether this approach is truly helping kids like Trayvon and how we stop perpetuating the blind eye turned on inappropriate behavior when it is done by "victims" of history. In this sense, I agree with George W. Bush that there is a kind of bigotry of low expectations with respect to the behavior that brings these kids into deadly conflict.

    Tragically, when outside the media focus, kids like Trayvon are harshly treated for their crimes yet widely believe that if they are minors they will not be imprisoned (because adults egging them into criminal acts tell them so), that life is short and they will probably die young so why not grab it all now, and that all legitimate paths to success are closed to them. They think people like Snoop care about what happens to them and that folks like Digby can and will protect them -- finding instead that protection extends only so far as the mutual interests served and no further.

    I do not believe that liberals care any more about Trayvon than they do about black kids in our schools. If they did, they would not encourage by excusing self-defeating behavior and would expect our society to treat similarly the black and white children who get into trouble, train black children to succeed in the mainstream culture, and hold parents accountable for their kids behaviors. Pretending that criminal behavior is just another aspect of cultural diversity is demeaning to African Americans and other cultures and to the majority of kids who manage to adhere to norms, which are not that different across minority and mainstream cultures when it comes to things like stealing and fighting.

    OK -- call me a racist now. I am not foolish enough to believe there can be any real dialog about the larger issues inherent in this case.

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    1. Taking the Zimmerman trial as a jumping off point, this comment brings in Snoop Lion, George W Bush, generalizations about liberals, African Americans and kids these days.

      Why stop there? Why not throw in the Turing Test, Theory of Mind, and a Grand Unified Theory of the Universe as well?

      "OK -- call me a racist now."
      Not racist, just... not insightful. Ridiculously presumptuous. Indeed, starting with such vapidities, a dialog can not be had.

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  3. Digby is very, very frightening. This is not reporting or analysis but propaganda she is engaged in.

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    1. Her protege David Atkins is even worse.
      And they seem to have disabled their comment section while pretending not to. There's not even a space to click on anymore on the desktop version, and the mobile version has been giving the condescending message "This is a temporary comment system so I'd appreciate it if you'd save your complaints for now" for MONTHS.
      Add in that insufferable prig Tristero and that blog really is a pigpen.

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    2. A "prigpen," if you will. Copyright anonymous.

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  4. "It hasn’t been shown that Zimmerman tried to “chase down” Martin. It hasn’t been shown that he “stalked” Martin, unless you just enjoy servicing pleasure centers."

    Perhaps it has not been shown, or perhaps it has been. If the prosecution, in its argument that Z would not have gotten out of his car in order to check street signs (Z's claim), and witnesses like Ms. Jeantel are to be believed, then it HAS been shown that Z "stalked" or tried to "chase down" Martin (or at least tried to follow him in an aggressive and hostile state of mind). The jury will decide what and whom it believes. But in covering aspects of this trial (mostly its coverage by MSM and "liberal" bloggers), on this point as on many others, Mr. S so overstates and misrepresents the possibilities for reasonable disagreement over how to interpret the evidence presented in this case -- so bends over backwards to interpret it in Z's direction (way beyond the "reasonable doubt" mark) -- that I don't really care anymore what he has to say about this subject.

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    1. Recordings of the actual trial and presentation of evidence are also available on the internet. You do not have to learn about this filtered through the opinions of media.

      Possibilities for disagreement arise from the testimony of the trial. Somersby isn't inventing them. Zimmerman has a plausible defense and some of the attorneys commenting at various sites believe he should be acquitted because the prosecution has not made its case. That this is not common knowledge is part of the problem with coverage of this case.

      Giving up mental effort when things get confusing or hard to think about ("I don't really case anymore what he has to say...") is why pundits get away with propagandizing -- on both sides of this issue. People don't want to do the sifting through the evidence and make up their own minds -- it is easier to let Digby or Nancy Grace or someone similar tell you what to believe about who did what.

      If you don't care, why are you posting? Seems to me you are frustrated because things are complicated and people are disagreeing with your favored viewpoint.

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    2. "People don't want to do the sifting through the evidence and make up their own minds - it is easier to let Digby or Nancy Grace or someone similar tell you what to believeabout who did what."

      Or, Carnac the Magnificent, you could let Somerby tell you what to believe about who did what.

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    3. Anonymous @3:58, you seem to assume a lot about my positions! Did I say anything one way or the other about my position on Z's innocence or guilt? No. (If anything, I may have implied that I don't have one, at least as regards current Florida law.) About how closely I have followed either journalists' coverage of the case or publicly available transcripts? No. All I did was take Bob to task on one point that seemed to me to illustrate well one of the weaknesses in his analysis. I expect more of Mr. S, which is why I bothered to comment despite my dismay with the flabbiness of his Z posts.

      Btw, by focusing exclusively on the (so-called) "liberal" coverage of this case, Mr. S. distorts and misleads. His approach is inadequate to considering, for instance, whether his beloved notion of "tribalism" accounts for the weaknesses in the coverage or larger journalistic or social issues are operating here.

      As a result, Mr. S gives succour to all sorts of flabby thinking, even as he trumpets himself as the guru of fair and thorough, incisive analysis.

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  5. These series of posts remind of Bob's Katrina series,when he took liberals to task for doubting the tales of murder and mayhem after the storm.

    Granted, liberals post bad information, as do others. Granted also that Zimmerman had a legitimate concern for his community. But also be aware that Zimmerman is a known liar with violence in his past. If you want real balance in this story, those facts should be part of it.

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    1. Yes, this is what the prosecution wants you to believe. It is also a fact that everyone lies -- what makes someone a "known liar" as opposed to a person who has told a lie at one time or another?

      None of that changes the physical evidence presented in this case, nor the corroboration provided by witnesses for things Zimmerman said happened. If Zimmerman's statements were the only evidence you might choose to disbelieve all of his testimony because he "is a known liar with violence in his past," but that isn't the case. Further, when you have several known liars all saying different things, who do you disbelieve? All of them? The ones you like best? Or the one whose story most closely fits other sources of information?

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    2. Aside from the problems with Zimmerman's story regarding the shooting, there's the issue of his bond. On that basis alone, I'm justified in calling him a liar.

      Corroborations for Zimmerman's story are shaky as well, if one approaches the forensic evidence and witness' statements with an even hand.

      Zimmerman has had a good deal of favorable press. If Bob mentioned that along with the liberal mistakes, I'd be more receptive.

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    3. Zimmerman lost his job over this and would be justified in being worried about money. Lying out of fear to protect financial security doesn't make someone a habitual liar about everything. Corroborations are only shaky because of the absence of evidence, not because what he says is contradicted by what evidence exists. The problem the prosecution has had is that its own witnesses have tended to support Zimmerman's statements and to exculpate him, not support the prosecution's narrative. If you are going to call Zimmerman a liar, I think you have to call his mother, father and girlfriend liars as well.

      Bob's focus here is the liberal media -- always has been. He is most concerned with this case because of what it reveals about liberal thought than because of the issues raised by this case. There is no reason why he should have mentioned that right wing sources have championed Zimmerman's cause in biased ways. He is trying to clean up liberal acts, not conservatives -- they are the problem of those on the right who probably should be demanding better information too.

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    4. "His" above refers to Martin's mother, father & girlfriend, not Zimmerman's. Sorry for any confusion.

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    5. I keep reading here about Zimmerman's story(s) being true due to physical evidence.
      WTF? Zimmerman said Martin broke his nose, tried to suffocate him using his hands, and reached for Zimmerman's gun. NONE of that is supported by physical evidence.

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    6. "Absence of evidence isn't evidence of absence"

      The anti Zim mob is painfully stupid.

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    7. The fallacy of "absence of evidence....." is generally defined under logical "appeals to ignorance", since it is so often used to (as here) to suggest that "no proof" doesn't mean anything.

      But obviously, if blood would be expected on an assailant and there is none, it does have relevance, and that fact is entered into evidence.

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  6. Stalk: to pursue obsessively to the point of harassment.

    If Zimmerman wasn't stalking Martin, then perhaps Bob could contact the folks at Merriam-Webster and deliver one of his scolding, schoolmarmish lectures to them. When person A follows person B, person B runs away, and person A continues following them, that would meet the definition of "harassment" to most people. But then, most people aren't obsessed with the notion that anyone who sees the world differently than they do is just a "tribalist," bringing on the end of western civilization through their tribalism.

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    1. There is no evidence that this is what happened. Zimmerman says he went back to his truck and that Martin approached him. He says he was no longer following Martin but looking for a house number. Your assumption that Zimmerman continued following Martin after he ran away is not in evidence.

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    2. Transcript from Zimmerman's call to the police:

      7:09:34 - 7:13:41 — George Zimmerman calls the Sanford Police Department (SPD) from his truck; total time of the call is 4 minutes 7 seconds.[15]
      7:11:33 — Zimmerman tells the police dispatcher that Trayvon Martin is running.
      7:11:59 — In reply to the dispatcher's question, "Are you following him?" Zimmerman says, "Yes." Dispatcher states, "OK, we don't need you to do that." Zimmerman replies, "OK."

      Martin is running; Zimmerman, ACCORDING TO HIS OWN WORDS, is following him.

      But you're right, other than his own words, there's no evidence at all that Zimmerman was following him.

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    3. Dispatcher states, "OK we don't need you to do that." Zimmerman replies, "OK."

      ACCORDING TO HIS OWN WORDS -- "OK" he is no longer following him. Also according to his own testimony and according to the location where the encounter took place (T intersection) and according to the witness (Good). There is no evidence he continued to follow him after that point.

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    4. He CONTINUED following him until the dispatcher told him to stop. Key word being "continued." Now, this story of Zimmerman's might be true, might be false, is probably both part true and part false, given what human beings are. The point is that one doesn't have to be an "insane tribalist," or, as some of the bigots here have put it, a "ghetto thug," to see Zimmerman's behavior as stalking. If someone followed me around, at night, I ran, and they CONTINUED to follow me, I'd feel like I was being stalked -- as would most people who aren't so hopped up on this topic that they'll say anything, or adopt any position, no matter how absurd, to "win" the argument. Or, like Bob, are so set in the habit of scolding everyone for tribalism that they do it out of bitter, reflexive custom.

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    5. If anyone exhibited stalking behavior it was Trayvon. When first sighted by Zimmerman, he circled his truck menacingly while pretending to clutch a weapon underneath his shirt. Later, when he had long passed out of Zimmerman's sight, and had plenty of time to get home, he instead hid in the dark and waited to ambush him. Then, he accosted and assaulted him, almost knocking him unconscious or even killing him in the process.

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    6. He then clicked his heels three times and transported himself to Kansas.

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    7. Yup, til the evidence is that when the dispatcher told Zimmerman to follow Martin he did, and that when they suggested they no longer "needed him to do that" he stopped.

      No evidence says he continued.

      You're a liar or an idiot.

      Or both.

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    8. Am I missing something? I thought zimmerman did not take the stand, which means he did not testify.

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    9. Z testified to Hannity. To millions of Americans, that is sacrosanct.

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  7. Somerby himself is sounding more and more insane on the subject. He seems to be practically hysterical whenever any subject involving racism comes up. On the face of it he thinks that no one should ever be accused of racism - why is that?

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    1. No, the problem is with this comment not Bob Somerby.

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    2. Somerby has talked about "stop and frisk" in NYC on the blog several times, and has talked ad nauseum about racial disparities in public education on this blog. He recently highlighted a blog post from the Talkleft blog that contained this:

      The problems of racial disparity and arbitrary enforcement of our criminal laws are real, systemic and need to be addressed. Criminal defense lawyers see it and fight to correct it every day. From charging decisions to plea offers to sentences, the system is not fair and everybody knows it.

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    3. And that's to his credit. Unfortunately, he seems to have forgotten that some in the South still regard shooting a black man as less than a crime. That mentality hasn't disappeared from the earth, and that mentality arguably influenced events until "liberal politics" interceded.

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    4. Based on the lack of case put forth by the prosecution, the original decision not to charge Zimmerman seems to have been wiser and the intercession seems to have resulted in harm to a man who was simply defending himself after an encounter with a youth who attacked him. Liberal politics have resulted in a miscarriage of justice for Zimmerman with considerable hardship. That matters too.

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    5. Yes, clearly Bob is arguing here the nobody should ever be accused of racism.

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    6. In response to majneb, no, only "liberals" should be taken to task, and not for their active racism but for their (including blacks'!) complacent indifference to racism. The pretty active racism of the organized rightwing is -- what? to be taken for granted? Maybe, but many of his commenters don't read him that way. The occasional nod Mr. S makes to acknowledging the outrageous journalistic practices of Fox and others seems to get lost on many folks who read here. Mr. S needs to remember his time in a classroom, or think of his time in front of an audience. Audience matters. You adjust how you present things in order to reach an audience. All else is self-indulgence. (MLK understood this, btw. Adjusting what you say to your audience doesn't have to mean abandoning principle.)

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  8. The way liberals talk about this case reminds me of the Seinfeld episode "The Yada Yada".

    George was suspicious of Trayvon yada yada yada George shot Trayvon. Of course when you say it like that he sounds guilty. You yada yada'd out the most important part!

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    1. I think you just like saying "yada yada."

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  9. Bob has focused on the media's sins of commission. But, there are also race-based sins of omission. The media does not want to portray Martin negatively.

    A current example is stuff on Martin's cell phone that the prosecution improperly hid from the defense. The defense was only able to get it a few days ago. Judge Nelson (perhaps improperly) prohibited the jury from seeing it. But, there's no prohibition preventing the media from showing it.

    The stuff is dramatic. It includes discussions of Martin beating someone up. There are other entries showing a tendency toward violence. It includes a picture of a gun and statement that Martin wanted to buy an illegal gun.

    This is dramatic stuff. It could make a riveting news report. I haven't checked all the outlets, but my impression is that the media downplayed this material.

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    1. Including your tribe's media?

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  10. Self-defense boils down to and fails on just one point which Zimmerman himself admitted on recordings in evidence: When they encountered, Trayvon asked why Z was following him, and Z refused to either identify himself or state a reason. Z also immediately grabbed for something in or behind his pants pocket which triggered/provoked the conflict and TM's death.

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    1. At the point where Trayvon asked whether Zimmerman was following him the cell phone is dropped and the rest of the conversation cannot be heard.

      If your suggestion is that refusing to talk to Trayvon or reaching into a pocket justifies being hit by Martin, and that therefore Zimmerman forfeited any right of self-defense during the subsequent attack, I think you are wrong. You seem to be suggesting that these actions are provocation but I don't see how they can be construed that way.

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    2. Correct, anon on 4:35. When a black man confronts a white man, that white man must immediately announce his purpose, subject to the possibility of immediate beat-down.

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    3. Anon 4:35 is correct. TM would have had a witness he was running to escape a pursuer who ultimately caught up to him. Florida law would sanction TM's killing Zimmerman when Z grabbed for something in his waist area after refusing to explain himself. Striking with his fist, the only defense he had, was a response to the provocateur. And if you "fill in the gaps" as the defense begged the jury not to do (for good reason), you could reasonably see Z grabbing for his gun.

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    4. Majneb...Your sarcasm is wasted except on dumbaxxes who ignore what led up to the face to face encounter.

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  11. bob Somersby needs to stop calling himself as liberal.
    he never takes the conservative media to task its always
    the shortcomings of the so called liberal media.
    furthermore George Zimmerman killed traynon martin period.

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    1. No one is disputing that Zimmerman killed Martin. The law allows killing in self defense. The issue is whether Zimmerman was defending himself when he shot Martin. It seems pretty clear he was. Eye witnesses and physical evidence say so.

      It is an example of tribalism that one cannot see the facts differently than they are portrayed by our liberal media without being accused of being non-liberal at best and racist at worst. Group think is enforced by this kind of name-calling.

      I read this blog because it exemplifies critical thinking, not because it always mirrors my own views or presents a liberal perspective or scores point against conservatives.

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    2. "...our liberal media..."

      But then a lecture on "tribalism" and "critical thinking."

      The sooner this case is resolved the better. What a cast of characters have come out of the woodwork to hoot while dancing by the "tribal" fire.

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    3. I went over to TPM and read the comments to the Zimmerman post that is there this evening. In the comments, anyone who tries to talk about the evidence is being accused of being a racist or being called a moron. Most of the posts are entirely clueless about what evidence was actually presented during the trial and most perpetuate the misinformation spread by the media.

      til, I don't see how calling people a cast of "hooting characters" is much better than that.

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    4. In that case, I misunderstood what you meant by "our liberal media": apparently you aren't one of the hooters. But you're one of the few.

      What I've discovered is that different websites develop different followers, and different orthodoxies are acceptable at each one. At Talk Left, it seems the anti-Martin crowd has sway, judging from the comments I read on the link Bob provided. Here, you have a mix. TPM's message boards have been a disaster since soon after they started, although the reporting on the site itself is decent, if you want to keep on top of liberal thought.

      Personally, I no longer post at any of the large websites, because they simply become mobs of like-minded people, and come after non-believers with a villagers-pursuing-Frankenstein zeal. And they look, for all the word, like literate, primitive tribalists dancing around the internet fire while hooting nonsense.

      Bob himself, by the way, whom I've been reading for about 13 years, and with whom I've had several interesting e-mail discussions, is subject to becoming a crank at times (as most of us are, to be fair), but Bob's crankism is becoming increasingly hostile, unreasoning, and frequent. I'd be careful about assuming anything Bob says is the product of critical thinking, unless I'd looked it over myself first. At times -- they are becoming more frequent -- Bob dances and hoots around his own, personal fire (anti-tribalism). A few of the people here have shown signs of wanting to join him.

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    5. I've seen Bob go after Rachel Maddow for being redundant in columns in which he says it over and over and in so very many and varied ways.

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  12. "and physical evidence say so."

    No it doesn't. There is zero DNA evidence supporting Zimmerman's claims that Martin broke his nose, tried to suffocate him with his hands, or grabbed his gun.

    So can you explain to me why you wrote it's pretty clear based on the physical evidence?

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    1. Actually there was Trayvon Martin's DNA on the back of Zimmerman's jacket (shoulder). There is medical evidence that Zimmerman's nose was broken and there were abrasions on the back of his head. There is also testimony that the DNA evidence was not properly stored and may have deteriorated because it was kept in plastic bags (which grow mold) instead of paper bags. So, there may have initially been more evidence than was presented at trial. However, what physical evidence exists and was presented at trial supports Zimmerman's account and points toward Trayvon Martin's participation in an attack on Zimmerman. There is also the eyewitness who saw Martin straddling Zimmerman and hitting him.

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    2. "There is also the eyewitness who saw Martin straddling Zimmerman and hitting him."

      Oh that. Big deal.

      Someone saw Martin beating Zimmerman, because Zimmerman's just a wuss who needs a gun. Martin should've pounded his head a few more times.

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    3. Maybe next time Martin wont take skittles to a gun fight.

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  13. I guess this is really what it is all about.

    http://www.boomantribune.com/site-files/trayvonmartin.jpg

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  14. There has been a big swing toward the Zimmerman side during the trial (by much of the media), and that's the system we have. However, we don't "know" Trayvon was on top because an "expert said so." A loose garment like a hoodie could be puffed up 2-4 inches in front because of friction from the ground in the back, during a serious scuffle. Remember, it is the defense that is claiming it was a life or death struggle. Or what if, Z was on top and grabbed T's hoodie 2-4 inches worth? That's two possibilities the prosecution blew off, who knows why?
    I was watching Bill Maher's show tonight, one of his right-wing panelists said Trayvon was beating Z in a beatdown. Well, we know for sure Z's wounds weren't anything more than a little blood on the nose (none of which transferred to T's hands), and some superficial scalp wounds. Hardly reason to pull a gun and shoot to kill, especially when you just called the cavalry. Really, how many people die each year from having their head slammed into the pavement? I'll venture approaching zero.
    Another topic, but on tonight's show, Bill Maher let a right -wing TV host I never heard of , come on and blame college kids and the unemployed for the unemployment problem. Because they didn't choose the right major, or have the right skills. Well, the fact is unemployment is up in all sectors, so there is not a "structural" problem, we have a consumer demand deficit. But neither Maher nor Cornel West challenged this man on his main points. Very disappointing.

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    1. The prosecution blew off those possibilities because they were inconsistent with the testimony of the eyewitness who saw Martin straddling Zimmerman and punching him and inconsistent with the technical expert who testified about the angle of the bullet in relation to the wound and marks on Martin's clothing. You cannot introduce speculations that don't fit the physical evidence and expert testimony about ballistics.

      Zimmerman's wounds include a broken nose (not a little blood on the nose) and abrasions on the back of his head consistent with being beaten on the pavement. What you might venture is not the same as actually looking up the number of concussions and/or deaths occurring in fights each year, which are not zero. Further, people do go to jail on manslaughter and murder charges for weaponless bar fights in which on person kills another with bare hands. Sometimes it is unintended, as when someone is knocked down and hits his head against concrete or a piece of furniture, but people die and others go to jail nevertheless. Kids have died in playground fights of this kind.

      Experts are hired because they have specialized technical knowledge about how to reconstruct what happened. Choosing to disregard such evidence would disqualify you from a jury and it is tantamount to those who deny global warming because the evidence is being provided by "experts" and who can believe what they say? Zimmerman didn't break his own nose.

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    2. Experts often disagree. The prosecution did point out, apparently not strongly enough, that because we have shoulder, elbow and wrist joints, any angle can be achieved. A med examiner speculating about a situation he did not witness is not the same as the decades of hard evidence of global warming.

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  15. There is so much nonsense here. I am as disappointed in "the tribe", phony progressives, as anyone, but some seem to have become so jaded they are doing a 180 to make a point.
    -It is not clear what happened, and whether this killing was justified homicide. There is one witness, and he is up on serious charges, with a year to prepare with attorneys while the dead guy can't say anything. Is it "tribalism" to maybe think a desperate man might lie to avoid a few decades in prison? Hell, I would, and my attorney would recommend it!
    - Who really believes Z would have died of head bashing if he hadn't shot to kill? Come on, Z was bigger, whether on top or not, and could have worked his way out if he really was scared and the adrenaline flowed. But no, he played the cheap, deadly gun card.
    -And this is the irony-in an attempt to combat "liberal" tribalism, some of the more zealous 'progressives" have gone whole-hog to OK this one instance of death by concealed carry. But in a nation of 300 million guns, is this really what you want for your own neighborhood?

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    1. "There is so much nonsense here... [commenter then proceeds to add the absolute greatest example of "nonsense" contributed to the thread thus far]"

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    2. The prosecution must prove its case beyond a reasonable doubt. Raising questions is all well and good, but uncertainties must be resolved in favor of the defendant.

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    3. I can't respond to charges of absolute greatest nonsense without something specific to respond to. Many intelligent people think Z is guilty beyond a reasonable doubt, based on inconsistent statements and his negligible injuries. I've seen many more serious injuries during pick-up basketball games, but none was followed by a "justifiable" murder. There is ambiguity , and I understand some people can reasonably see Z as innocent, er, not guilty. So I was not "shocked", like Nancy Grace, but I wasn't at all shocked by the Casey Anthony verdict either. The prosecution in that case lacked direct evidence and their speculation was shot down. The author of this site, whom I believe is usually one of the best bloggers around, speaks often of the mainstream media "narrative". In the Z case, the prosecution failed to offer a counter narrative, and pretty much conceded Trayvon was the aggressor when they failed to push back effectively against the defense's med examiner. but it might not have mattered. If man is irrational, so is every jury!

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  16. The prosecution deliberately withheld exculpatory information from the defense during discovery. This evidence was ruled inadmissible by the judge and consisted of the cell phone contents of Trayvon Martin's phone. As a result, the whistleblower who brought the evidence to the attention of the defense was fired:


    "State Attorney Angela Corey fires information techonology director who raised concerns in Trayvon Martin case

    Posted: July 13, 2013
    By David Bauerlein

    State Attorney Angela Corey fired her office's information technology director Friday after he testified last month about being concerned prosecutors did not turn over information to George Zimmerman's defense team in the shooting death of Trayvon Martin."


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    1. Iniquitous integrity.

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  17. All you have to do is read the jury instructions, then try to make a case as to why they would convict, I don't see it.

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  18. I thought we settled that Zimmerman was following Martin on this very blog?
    I mean, first we had to go through how Zimmerman wasn't following Martin with his car, but on foot, but the "following" part really isn't in dispute.
    Now we're parsing the difference between "following" and "chasing"?
    It's funny, because reading the Zimmerman interviews, statements and media appearances together, that's the most disturbing part of his recitation, the weird rhetorical contortions he goes thru to deny "following"
    At one point he tells Mr. Hannity that Martin wasn't "running" (although of course Zimmerman said he was running) but was instead "skipping"
    Part of the reason the state focused on "following" is because there's so much material there, ALL of it provided by Zimmerman himself. They used it to discredit his testimony, which is not only proper, but a no-brainer.

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  19. So the state's theory would go like this: why deny "following" Martin? What's the goal there or the reason for that?
    It's a darn good question!
    One could take an alternate account, where Zimmerman admitted following Martin and STILL he could raise self defense, so one does wonder: why the denials of "following", to the point where Zimmerman says he was not "following" but instead "walking in the same direction" and behind Martin.

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  20. "Oh that. Big deal.

    Someone saw Martin beating Zimmerman, because Zimmerman's just a wuss who needs a gun. Martin should've pounded his head a few more times."

    With people like you on the street, I'm glad I'm licensed to carry.

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    1. You would have had more credibility if you had admitted "following"
      As would have Zimmerman!
      He can still raise self defense, just as you're doing.
      Why do YOU think he denied following? It doesn't matter under FL law of self-defense. Why was that so important to him?

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    2. Since you (apparently) believe Zimmerman's account and I don't, I'll give you my theory for why he lied about following Martin.
      He took a kind of "survey" course on self defense law. "Following" could matter in a different jurisdiction under different state law.
      "Following" also matters to media, obviously, so when Zimmerman was making his case on Hannity, (trying this in the media!, one might say, were one consistent in outrage) he had to answer the question again.

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  21. There have been excesses by those telling and retelling tales from different tribes in this case. So I will tell a simple tale based on totally undisputed facts.

    A man straps on a gun before going to buy "groceries" at Target. While driving out of his neighborhood, he spots a teen in a hoodie and immediately notifies the police dispatcher. Instead of continuing on his appointed task of buying groceries he stays on the phone with a police dispatcher, gets out of his vehicle, and follows the teen. At some point he describes the teen as "running,"
    and makes reference to "fucking punks" and "these assholes always get away." At another point he is asked by the police dispatcher if he is following the teenager. He replies that he is. The dispatcher tells him "we don't need you to do that." He replies "OK." Moments later he shoots the teenager dead.

    I would submit, based on that evidence alone, that, had the man not put on his gun, or gotten out of his vehicle to follow the teen, no crime would have been committed or prevented and nobody would have died.

    I would finally submit there was a good reason why the police dispatcher told the man they did not need him to be following the teen.

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    1. Z profiled M as a suspicious person. M's later actions of punching Z, knocking him down and then mounting him and pounding his head on the sidewalk proved that M was indeed a bad person. But, even if Z had wrongly profiled M or even racially profiled M, that would have no legal significance.

      I wouldn't call buying groceries an "appointed task" for Z. It was just something he planned to do. But, following M, an unknown, non-resident acting suspiciously, and reporting to the dispatcher was precisely an appointed task for a Neighborhood Watch Captain.

      It's not quite true that if Z hadn't been out of his truck or hadn't been armed, no crime would have occurred. Martin's assault would still have occurred if Z had been unarmed.

      But, I would agree that Z hadn't been out of his truck or hadn't been armed, probably no murder would have occurred (at least no murder of M). By the same token, if M hadn't been there, no crime would have occurred. However, both Z and M had a legal right to be where they were. Z had a legal right to carry a concealed weapon. Z had a legal right to follow M. And Z had a legal right to call the dispatcher.

      BTW I have read that it's standard operating procedure for the dispatcher to tell Neighborhood Watch people that they don't have to follow the person they deem suspicious. The reason given was to protect the Police Dept. from lawsuits if the Neighborhood Watch person is injured

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    2. 1. M would have assaulted Z if he had stayed in the truck? Are you a seer? Could he maybe lock the door, blow the horn or drive off?
      2. Even if M did end up on top of Z, and I don't concede that at all, maybe Z was the aggressor but then M ended up on top in self-defense.

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  22. "I would submit, based on that evidence alone, that, had the man not put on his gun, or gotten out of his vehicle to follow the teen, no crime would have been committed or prevented and nobody would have died.
    "

    Your submission is irrelevant.

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    1. "Had the man not acted legally and reasonably, all this could be avoided"

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  23. Somerby writes, "Martin was banging Zimmerman’s head onto concrete moments before he was killed."

    Did Zimmerman have a cracked skull? Did he have a concussion? Did he need stitches?

    Was Martin "banging" Zimmerman's head against the concrete. The evidence says no but Somerby needs to stick to the script or get tossed from the club.

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    1. No, you lying douchebag!

      Somerby doesn't say in his own voice as you plainly imply by deleting the context, that "Martin was banging Zimmerman’s head onto concrete moments before he was killed."

      Somerby says "BUT IN ONE OF THE MAJOR DISPUTED ACCOUNTS, Martin was banging Zimmerman’s head onto concrete moments before he was killed.

      The issue is the way that "major disputed account," whether eventually proven in the case or not, is ROUTINELY disappeared in many "liberal" accounts of the case.

      The evidence about what Somerby calls this "major disputed account" hardly "says no," but douchebags like you need to pretend this and various other unsupported things in order to maintain your thick-headed obliviousness to the vile behavior of certain media "liberals."

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