The News (Really) Bytes – May 2015

Reviewing the news for May

Cleveland, Ohio Police Chief Calvin Williams says that 71 people were arrested while protesting the acquittal of a police officer who shot to death two unarmed black drivers because “a few of them went over the line.” Of course, shooting two people 137 times is not considered “over the line” by Cleveland authorities. That is seven bullets more than the Texas law officials used to kill Bonnie and Clyde who were armed, had killed 9 law enforcement agents and had twelve guns on them when they were ambushed.

23fcd4e8-0240-4584-a58d-d0809bf86c45The Denver Airport has put on a big ad campaign about how it is lowering pollution by using natural gas buses to take passengers out to the airport. In another point of view, they could have stopped even more pollution by not having moved the airport 25 miles outside the city to land that just happened to be owned by then Mayor Federico Pena.

The airport used to be located inside the city and now is so far out in the plains that one can not only not see the city from there but also cannot see the town’s skyscrapers. The individual cost for each traveler to reach the new airport is multiple times higher than when it was still in the city and takes much more gas for commuters and goods to reach there. Rumor has it that Pena’s future plans are to dismantle Denver and have everyone move out to the airport and name it “Pena City.”

Oil officials react to the environmental catastrophe of a huge leak from a pipeline off the coast by putting a positive spin on it: “Look, because of the oil, beach goers don’t have to put on as much sunscreen, which also pollutes.”

A lone Mexican Grey Wolf which was introduced into the wild in New Mexico was shot dead by U.S. Fish and Wildlife, not because it was acting aggressively towards the humans it was near, but because it wasn’t showing any fear of them. Apparently the U.S Fish and Wildlife is using the same strategy for dealing with the grey wolves as the Ferguson Police Department uses in its dealings with black residents.

The gyrocopter pilot who flew his machine on to the White House grounds to deliver a 535-signature petition against Congress’ unlimited covert campaign financing and lobbying was arrested. Congress’ reaction: “He should be locked up! This is a threat to our national security!” Our reaction: “But what happened to the petition with the signatures?” Congress’ reaction: (Fingers in ears) “We can’t hear you! La, la, la, la, la.”

The Bush Administration’s Patriot Act, which includes huge intrusions into the affairs of normal Americans, is up for renewal. The same Republicans who scream at Obama for interfering with corporate rights, gun rights and citizen are fussing about how the act should be renewed. If the conservatives can pull this off, they will have succeeded in making hypocrisy a moral virtue.

On May 16th, Egypt’s first freely elected president, Mohamed Morsi, was sentenced to death for having been involved in a prison break in 2011. Hosni Mubarak, the leader who got ousted before Morsi, was accused of murdering reformers. Now Mubarak is getting 3 years imprisonment due to the country again being under a military leadership as it was under Mubarak. Also killing protesters is what the present regime under Sisi is doing.

The U.S. supported Mubarak even though he was a military dictator who squashed dissent, was against Morsi even though he was the freely elected President, and presently tentatively supports the present regime under Sisi although it took power by a coup and is again repressing dissent. Should we really be the ones selling Democracy to other nations? Do we really know what it is ourselves? Maybe we should all go over to the bookshelf and look it up in the dictionary again.

Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan suggested the New York Times should “know its place” after criticizing his country in an article. Erdogan sure has proven that he has a firm idea of where dissenting newspaper writers belong in his country — behind bars!

Roger Freed