Monday Morning Open Thread: Never A Slow News Day!

Murphy the Trickster God only knows what’ll happen by start-of-business hours, so here’s a bunch of snippets before they get overwhelmed by this morning’s revelations. (And if this jinxes the streak so that there *are* no media-capturing revelations, you may thank me later.)

Possible media metaphor…

Good News Open Thread: DeAndre Harris Found Not Guilty

Per The Root:

On Friday, the American criminal-justice system actually got something right; as it turns out, DeAndre Harris, the black man who was brutally beaten during the Charlottesville, Va., Unite the Right white supremacist rally, was found not guilty of assaulting a white nationalist.

Last year, Harris, who was counterprotesting the infamous rally, was cornered and attacked by white supremacists in a parking garage. He sustained multiple injuries, including a broken wrist and staples in his head. Yet for some reason, Harris was charged with felony counts as well as misdemeanor assault following his own beating. The felony charges were ultimately dropped, but he was still forced to stand trial for the misdemeanor.

However, on the same day Harris went to trial, he was immediately acquitted. Charlottesville General District Court Judge Robert Downer Jr. found Harris, 20, not guilty. Had Harris been convicted, he would have faced up to 12 months in jail along with a $2,500 fine for allegedly striking Harold Crews, a North Carolina attorney and state chairman of the League of the South, the Washington Post reports.

In one clip, Crews is seen holding a large flagpole in front of a black protester, who is pulling on the other end. As the two grapple over the pole, Harris swings his flashlight, seemingly hitting Crews on his head or shoulder.

Moments later, several white supremacists cornered Harris in the garage and brutally took him to the ground, attacking him.

As stated, Harris suffered severe injuries, only to be treated as a criminal afterward. His friends and family started a GoFundMe to help pay for his medical expenses, a campaign that raised a whopping $166,045…

NYMag adds:

Twenty-year-old DeAndre Harris faced up to a year in prison for hitting Harold Crews, the state chairman of the neo-Confederate group the League of the South, over the head with a flashlight. The incident occurred outside a parking garage, shortly before a brawl between protesters and counterprotesters in the garage, during which Harris was beaten badly by several white supremacists. Harris suffered a spinal injury and a head laceration that required stitches.

Crews brought the charges against Harris two months after the rally, at which point a warrant was issued for his arrest. The charge, originally a felony, was knocked down to a misdemeanor.

Crews (along with legions of right-wingers online) claims that Harris had incited violence by hitting him with the flashlight. But Harris said that he had only struck Crews because Crews had been attacking his friend, Corey Long, with a flagpole…

Four men who assaulted Harris in the garage, including members of Crews’s organization, face trials in the spring.

Cheers broke out in the courtroom when the verdict was read.

Just Say No

This story got buried under the news of Andrew McCabe’s firing on Friday, but it’s important if we want to elect people who can bring about responsible government. That starts now, as we move toward November’s elections.

You know those cute little quizzes that are supposed to tell you something about who you are? Which movie star are you? Are you a cat or a dog person? What is your color? So much fun to compare with what you think of yourself and with your friends’ results. In fact, you could share on Facebook and urge your friends to see what their favorite color was. Those quizzes asked you to share most of your Facebook data before you could play.

You may have been contributing data to Cambridge Analytica’s work to help elect Donald Trump. Read more

PA Open Thread: Sow the Windbag, Reap the Fartcloud

Of course, the Repubs prefer to blame… well, anything other than the obvious:

Read more

PA Special Election Pt. III (& Re-counting?)

The Repubs are scrambling to explain that the margins are so narrow as to make this election meaningless, and also Conor Lamb is practically a Republican anyways, and besides the district is due to go away come November. So… looking good for Sen. Lamb, so far!

Tuesday Morning Open Thread: Down to the Wire in PA

If Accuweather is to be believed, the Pittsburgh area is far enough inland that only “flurries” are predicted today. I’m partisan enough to hope it discourages the elderly FOX-watching voters, but not their Democratic neighbors…


Theresa May has just said that the nerve agent that poisoned Sergei Skripal and his daughter is a member of the Novichok series of nerve agents. Their action is similar to VX and Sarin, but more potent.

May has given the Russian Embassy 36 hours to respond. She wants Russia to make all its information on the Novichok series available to the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW), which they should under their membership in the Chemical Weapons Convention. She stopped just short of accusing Russia of an act of war.

I had been wondering why it seemed to take some time for the agent to take effect. It seems to have been in Skripal’s house or on his wife’s gravestone, but Skripal felt its effects some time after he was at either of those places. At least one of the Novichoks seem to be solids. That would explain that time.

The message is as obvious as the attack on Alexander Litvinenko: We can hit you anywhere. Using a Novichok makes it clear that Russia did it. It will be interesting to see how Trump responds. I’m listening to Parliament’s debate. One of the members just said that they must ask the US for support.