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March 28, 2007

Recommended reading

Facing South on Attorneygate-Little Rock.

DMI on HSBC quitting predatory lending.

Shakes on Althouse.

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If you don't read Bean's posts about criminal justice, you don't know what you're missing.

Thanks for the link to the predatory lending post.

Iowa just passed a law to cap charges from car title loans. The next step is to try to get credit unions to offer emergency loans to non-members and to increase financial education in the schools.

Then there's the other kind of predatory lending we're gonna have to deal with. The word "subprime" has such a neutral, mathematical ring to it. What it leaves out: All too often, subprime = minority. The NYT shows how the foreclosure crisis is devastating minority neighborhoods in Newark -- and by extension, minority neighborhoods across the country. It's almost a kind of redlining in reverse.

Also read this letter to the NY Times about how protestors were treated by the police under the administration of New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg (R) during the 2004 Republican National Convention:

I was struck by the dry statement that “many of the 1,806 people arrested during the convention were held for up to two days on minor offenses normally handled with a summons.”

My daughter was among those arrested. She and the people she was with asked each police officer they passed whether he had any objection to their peacefully walking down the street and were reassured that there was no problem. They were herded into a trap surrounded by police officers (some embarrassed and apologetic).

They were taken to a warehouse. The only water was one toilet and one water fountain. They were left chained together in groups overnight, sleeping without pads or blankets.

Many developed rashes and other allergic reactions. Those whose medications had been confiscated started to become ill. The next day, they were taken to another holding pen, where they again spent the night heaped on a jail floor. They were held for three days and released only when the convention was ending, told that they could cause no more trouble.

It appears that this reaction was meant to convey that you will be risking your life the next time you attend a peaceful demonstration. Civil rights lawyers sued the city, and most of the original cases were thrown out on technicalities.

Leslie English
High Falls, N.Y., March 25, 2007

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That Griffin dude is also mentioned in a Truthout article, as follows:

"Through a process known as "caging," Griffin's team sent letters to newly registered voters in envelopes barring any forwarding, so they would be returned if a voter wasn't at that address. BBC's investigative reporter Greg Palast uncovered Griffin's role in this practice that proved especially effective in "caging" African-Americans who lived in low-income areas or who were serving in the U.S. military. The "caged" voters would then be challenged by Republican lawyers when they arrived at the polls. According to Palast and his BBC report, Griffin "was the hidden hand behind a scheme to wipe out the voting rights of 70,000 citizens prior to the 2004 election. Key voters on Griffin's hit list: Black soldiers and homeless men and women." Palast noted that "targeting voters where race is a factor is a felony crime under the Voting Rights Act of 1965."

Link: http://www.truthout.org/docs_2006/032907F.shtml

Needless to say, I will be covering this in my forthcoming book on the Florida 2000 Recount.

If Shakespeare's Sister truly thinks her positions on abortion and same-sex "marriage" are in line with paleoconservative ideology, then she needs to lay off the chronic. Opposition to the Iraq War, however, is in keeping with paleoconservatism (e.g., Pat Buchanan).

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