four more years

Obama Raises Money In San Francisco As Cops Gas Oakland Protesters

Laugh it up, scumball.

Here’s what Barack Obama did Tuesday: An interview with teevee clown Jay Leno, followed by a flight to San Francisco to raise money from gazillionaire venture capitalists. Here’s what the riot cops from 10 Bay Area police departments did on Tuesday night, just across the bay in Oakland: Fire “rubber bullets” on protesters demanding economic reforms, shoot “chemical agents” and “concussion grenades” at protesters demanding economic reforms, injure protesters reportedly including an Iraq veteran and somebody in a wheelchair and a child, and fire some bizarre “sonic cannon” developed by the Pentagon to torture foreign Arabs somewhere.

AP reports:

Denver was the last stop in a three-day swing that also took him to Las Vegas, Los Angeles and San Francisco, a fundraising-rich tour that let him spend time with top Los Angeles celebrities and to get some media attention in the battleground states of Nevada and Colorado.

[...]

Sponsored Video

The Western tour is one of Obama’s busiest donor outreach trips of the season.

The San Francisco crowd “paid a minimum of $5,000 to attend” Obama’s fundraiser. The appearance on NBC’s Jay Leno show is apparently seen by millions of semi-dead Americans. But in Oakland, a few minutes away across the San Francisco bay, the network-affiliate news cameras of ABC and CBS were ordered to be shut off by the riot police commanders. The news crews obliged, and were then reportedly tear-gassed. And then, with the live video out of the way, the police reportedly announced to the crowd that they were all under arrest, and told to “submit.”

This is not a repeat report of this morning’s pre-dawn raid on the Oakland protesters.

And at least Obama’s handlers and security and money counters know he’s not even welcome by a lot of the Democrat bigwigs who bankrolled him (along with Wall Street) in 2008. There were some very interesting protests outside his sleazy fundraising stop in San Francisco:

In a powerful display of profound disappointment with President Obama, some of the Democratic Party’s biggest donors gathered Tuesday – not inside his tony San Francisco fundraiser at the W Hotel, but outside on the sidewalks carrying signs in protest of his policies.

“I don’t even know what he stands for,” said Susie Tompkins Buell, a co-founder of the Esprit de Corps clothing company and one of the most generous Democratic Party donors in the nation – instrumental in backing such powerhouse progressive organizations as the Democracy Alliance and Media Matters.

The protesters and ex-donors had lots of complaints about Obama, starting with his administration’s insane support of a sweetheart oil industry pipeline from the Canadian earth-raping tar sand extraction pits to Texas. Also on the gripe list: Obama’s insane prosecution of California’s legal medical marijuana dispensaries, Obama’s torture of Bradley Manning and aggressive Orwellian prosecution of the very idea of Wikileaks, Obama’s constant wars against every Muslim on Earth, and some other things we can’t remember now because it’s late and who can keep track of this guy’s endless “disappointments.” [SF Gate/AP/SF Gate/#OccupyOakland]

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About the author

A writer and editor of this website from 2006 to early 2012, Ken Layne is occassionally seen on Twitter and writes small books and is already haunting you from beyond (your) grave.

View all articles by Ken Layne

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182 comments

  1. NeonTrotsky

    OPD Chief says they haven't used any flash bangs or rubber bullets. And just a little tear gas. Amazing how they just lie and lie in the face of video evidence all over the place, even video evidence from the local ABC station. Scum.

    People of Oakland, who are still out in the street thumbing your nose at the riot goons, you rock hard.

  2. BarackMyWorld

    Of course Obama doesn't want anything to do with those hippies in Occupy Wall Street. He has to fool middle America into thinking he's a centrist while his allies in the liberal media continue to tear apart real conservatives in the Republican primary.

    This post brought to you by the Rightwing Rationalizotron 3000.

  3. Negropolis

    Then, the Oakland PD should have scheduled their clearing better, huh?

    This proves that Jean Quan is morally weak.

      1. Negropolis

        But, the president should really be getting into the minutiae of local policing and thus should have known this was happening and stopped it, which proves that Obama is morally weak.

        This kind of logic is Glenn Beckian in its madness.

        On Friday, two days after those two had set the process in motion, Mayor Jean Quan abandoned her initial support for the protest and came to the same conclusion as they had: The camp was a hazard to public safety and health, and had to go.

        Can't have that rabble out front of the peoples' house, right? Cowardly mayor is cowardly. Bullshit she changed her mind about the protest. The only thing that changed is she lost her nerve when her police department sprayed her with their propaganda.

        1. HateMachine

          "Obama is morally weak."
          Motherfucker probably even nipped out the back door of the fundraiser to get a quick smoke, the coward. Why doesn't Barry have the moral fortitude to either stop smoking or smoke in all his campaign ads?

  4. iburl

    Riot Police Christmas has come early, they're getting to pull out all their "non-lethal" (i.e. torture) toys. The sonic cannon makes them hard.

    1. Crank_Tango

      all those toys are gonna hurt when they get stolen red dawn style and used against same cops.

      #OWolverineS!

  5. flamingpdog

    He talked about his jobs bill in familiar terms and referred to the tax increases by saying the bill was fully paid for “by asking those of us who’ve been most blessed in this society to do a little bit more.”

    No snark, Barry, I think you might really excite the 99 percent if you asked those most blessed to do a helluva LOT more to make America better after doing jackshit for the last 30 years. An "extra 500 bucks" a year in taxes wouldn't freaking hurt ME, and I'm not in the top one percent, although I'm probably in the top 33 1/3 percent. I love the way you present yourself as a populist while not asking for enough from the 1% to actually scare them out of contributing to your billion-dollar campaign coffers.

    1. RadioOcupados

      Oh, I thought he was going to ask for something totally outrageous like returning to the 3% higher marginal tax rates of the Clinton era.

    1. Sparky_McGruff

      You can tell the country is not under Sharia law, because Sharia Law bans usury. We can't even seem to come around to trying to slightly discourage outright bank fraud.

      1. Negropolis

        The only problem with Sharia law when it comes to money is that they finid out other fees to make up for the banning of usury. :(

    1. Negropolis

      I switched over to Leno for literally about ten minutes just to see the president (why I don't know)? Switched back. After what he did to Conan, I stopped even passively having his show on.

      1. datateday

        Yeah, I was thinking earlier today, 'If Conan O'Brien had better opening jokes, a nicer background, and mixed his real life personality into his shtick, he would've been the greatest Late Night host of them all, and it could've worked out.

  6. dogscantlookup

    Please Roland Deschain hurt 'em!
    “I do not kill with my gun;
    He who kills with his gun has forgotten the face of his father.
    I kill with my heart.”

    1. GhostBuggy

      Let's see some ED-209s doing some hippie stomping! Which, as we know, will result in malfunctions and robots spraying boardrooms with bullets.

    1. datateday

      Don't you be talkin' about Herman (Uzbeki-beki-beki-beki-stan-stan) Cain's sugarmamas that way!!!

      MMMMHHHMMMMM!

  7. mourningnmerica

    The Preznit is on a roll. With the Republicans epic failing multiple times a day, their race toward complete imbecility is making Barry to look like a shoo in. He will be facing the mentally diseased Mitt Romney in the General. He's going to tear that poor motherfucker to pieces in the debates. Barry will out spend and out campaign him. He will beat him like he stole somethin'. An exhausted Mittens will make a steady string of inexcusable gaffes.

    Late in the campaign, the conservatives will realize that the election is lost, will turn on the poor Mormon. His underwear won't save him. Then, Obama is re-elected, and, praise God, two of the five goon supreme court justices die unexpectedly (an aside here, trying to pick just which two would please you most is an excellent parlor game. After careful consideration, Roberts would have to be #1 for me.).

    So I suppose I'm down with it. And the country is moving left. He will follow their lead and drift more to the left.

  8. Negropolis

    OT: I'm getting very tired of the media's reporting on the Tunisian elections. How many times can they use the word "Islamist" to describe the party that got the most votes? Do they ever describe the Republicans in America every bit as religiously bent as many of these parties as the "Christianist" party? I don't think so.

    1. flamingpdog

      Islamist = brown, and scary (but then I repeat myself).
      Christianist = white, and "suffer the little children to come unto me".

    2. HateMachine

      Jeebus goblins are less scary and exotic. What's that? Islam isn't especially exotic in Tunisia? Well it's still super-intimidating, because I said so, so there.

    3. fuflans

      was thinking the same thing all day. it's almost like a country voted for a party that's kinda like them.

      weird.

    4. donner_froh

      Hard to imagine people taking part in a relatively free and fair election and not voting overwhelmingly for the pro-Amerikkkan stooge on the payroll of the CIA.

  9. DrunkIrishman

    Someone also purchased a scone somewhere in San Francisco tonight too.

    That's about as relevant to the protesters as an Obama fundraiser if you think about it.

    OH I GET IT! HE'S PRESIDENT! I guess he should go down to Oakland and bitch-slap some popo.

    Except he's black and would probably be pelted with rubber bullets and arrested on the spot.

    1. GregComlish

      I'm not a highfalutin poet or nothing, but I think Wonkette was using the contrast between the glitzy TV Obama and proximal street scenes of police violence against the dispossessed to make some sort of political point.

  10. user-of-owls

    So is the suggestion here that Obama should suspend all fundraising events until a metropolitan police force stops using brutish tactics?

    Because that whole "I'm suspending" schtick didn't work out so well for his opponent the last time around.

        1. Negropolis

          Better yet, he should just resign in disgrace, Nixon-style, effective immediately. Why? Well, because, the president in morally weak, which I've been convinced is some sort of mild treason.

          Hello President Biden!

  11. GeorgiaBurning

    It's much easier to be "concerned" about stuff happening far across the world to people you'll never meet. Put a donation on the credit card and feel good. But events happening a few miles away are invading the nice warm place you call home. You might actually have to come face to face with the protesters, or the cops; and that is very uncomfortable. It is a dilemma for liberals more than conservatives. SF, being a very liberal town, has always tried to avoid thinking about Oakland except when it's the butt of smug jokes at parties.

    1. BlueStateLibel

      Protesters in those bad brown countries = good
      Protesters in the U.S. = dirty hippies who deserve to be tear gassed

  12. mrblifil

    I heard Obama, as a peace gesture, actually offered to wade in among the OWS crowd and hand out rubber bullets individually. This way nobody's hair would get mussed, but the protestors would still get the idea that maybe they shouldn't run around testing the limits of that old First Amendment all that often or all that vigorously, because, y'know, someone could get hurt. It's just a fucking piece of paper after all.

    Naturally the Oakland cops put the kibosh on that, the fine officers complaining that it wasn't fair for "Sambo" to "steal all their fun." So Obama let discretion be the better part of valor, and backed right the fuck down. Because the Oakland police? They ain't playin'.

  13. SayItWithWookies

    I look forward to John McCain complaining, after significant financial industry reform and tax reform are enacted, that President Obama didn't embrace the OWS movement soon enough.

    And what the fuck, Oakland PD?! How is it acceptable to physically assault peaceful protesters without any kind of warning? If you were, say, an officer of the law, wouldn't that strike you as reckless endangerment at best — and negligent homicide or manslaughter if someone got killed? Do you have folks ever explain to you that you have to follow the very same laws you enforce? Just wondering.

    1. dogscantlookup

      Democrats shoots ya in the guts, Repuglakkkans shoots ya in the head.
      I'll take a gut shot over a head shot any day,
      It doesn't mean I like to get gut shot, nor does it mean I will not complain from the wound.
      I have a better chance gut shot than head shot.
      So I vote Dem

      1. MilwaukeeKent

        And then again, there is what we have now, which is a sucking chest wound. Still I'd rather have a sucking chest wound than the GOP head shot — every time they come up with a "jobs plan" it's just another lame, ham-handed attempt to secure a tax cut for the top and put more of the burden on the middle and lower classes. Mighty white of them.

    2. RadioOcupados

      Dammit, let's not forget how totally inept Gore was. Fuck Nader, at least the guy speaks some truth. But Gore is the one who dropped the baton. He couldn't even carry his own stupid state.

      1. dogscantlookup

        Yes Fuck Nader Fuck Nader Fuck Nader Fuck Nader Fuck Nader Fuck Nader
        Fuck Nader Fuck Nader Fuck Nader Fuck Nader Fuck Nader Fuck Nader
        Fuck Nader Fuck Nader Fuck Nader Fuck Nader Fuck Nader Fuck Nader
        Fuck Nader Fuck Nader Fuck Nader Fuck Nader Fuck Nader Fuck Nader
        Fuck Nader Fuck Nader Fuck Nader Fuck Nader Fuck Nader Fuck Nader,
        fuck,
        do it like Budd Dwyer, Nader

  14. YeOldeFapSmith

    I just moved to Portland from the South and have been attending Occupy Portland whenever my hangover will allow. The protest up here isn't getting much attention as it is peaceful as peaceful can be. The mayor even came out as we marched by and shook hands with many in the crowd. Obama is a complete scumbag and I won't be hoodwinked into voting for him again. The lesser of two evils is still evil. The worst thing of all? His appearing on LENO. *vomits on computer*

      1. YeOldeFapSmith

        I don't care. You can vote for whichever scumbag tickles your fancy. Do you really think it matters either way? I sure don't.

          1. YeOldeFapSmith

            I've already got the Presidential nomination all sowed up, bc I started the Decadence Party, but the Veep is still open for grabs. The Decadence Party has a facebook page btw :D

          2. Jukesgrrl

            That's the damn truth. The Decadence Party. Really? I'll be looking forward to reading that footnote to history in 20 years.

    1. Negropolis

      I just moved to Portland from the South…

      Honestly, this can qualify the rest of the bullshit you wrote.

      1. YeOldeFapSmith

        Honestly, you can go fuck yourself. I'm entitled to my opinion. Sorry, but Obama turned out not to be the man who I thought I was voting for. You can support the center-right corporate president all you'd like, but my principles won't allow for me to vote for him a second time.

        1. Negropolis

          Honestly, you can go fuck yourself…

          You know, I know that's a favorite Southern passtime for you guys, so I'll leave that to the pros.

          You the fuck did you think you were voting for? Don't tell me you were one of those sad fuckers riding the Unity Pony. You know, the one's who shouted down anyone that had any criticism of the candidate when you thought he was the Magic Negro savior. Hypocrites, the whole lot of you sad, over dramatic turncoats.

          Don't get mad at me for being a weak-minded voter willing to fall for anything. He didn't trick you; you psyched your own damned self out is what you did. Some of us weren't under any illusions.

          1. YeOldeFapSmith

            I don't know why you think it's okay to openly mock me for being originally from the South. Not all of us are inbred hicks. How'd you like it if I stereotyped you for being black(I assume you are from your screen name). And what does "that's a favorite Southern passtime[sic] for you guys" even mean? Is that an anti-gay slur(bc I am gay, so if it was, seriously, fuck you), or was it just another one of your very lame anti-Southerner slurs? I moved to Portland from the South bc it's the most liberal city I could afford, so, yea, I'm not exactly the hick you're stereotyping me as.

          2. Negropolis

            You started this whole thing with your first ridiculous post. After I responded with my petty comment, you told me I could go fuck myself. I made some mild Southern quip, and you're very first response to that is to tell me to go fuck myself, and I'm the homophobe and the one being rude? Right.

            BTW, I don't know anything about you but what you typed in the original post, and you don't know anything about me besides guessing correctly that I'm black, so maybe you shouldn't be making accusations based on ridiculous, twisted logic. Piece of advice: just don't start shit you're not willing to finish. If you didn't think your post was going to get a negative response, you were being naive is hell, and that's not my fault.

          3. YeOldeFapSmith

            I don't care if you consider it ridiculous or not. I know my opinion on the subject wasn't going to be popular. I don't give two fiddler's fucks about getting upfisted on the internet lol. You can justify your "mild" bigotry(and it is bigotry) anyway you want. Regardless, have a good night.

          4. mumbly_joe

            Hey now. Some of us young'uns in our (mid-) 20's are a fair bit brighter than that, and realize that bluster isn't a substitute for substance, even on the Internet, and that protest voting is idiotic.

          5. Negropolis

            For a guy that's said three or four times in this single post that he doesn't care, you sure have a lot of shit to say. If you think my Southern-directed "bigotry" is bad, go check out any post on a Rick Perry thread. You'd come down with the vapors faster than one could say "Fuck Texas."

            And, a good morning to you, too. This whole "honey badger" act does not suit you, sir, not at all.

          6. Dok-cupy Everything

            Looking at it again after a long day at work, I have to say that it's OK with me if he wants to eat a live cobra, or maybe some larvae. That'd actually be kind of cool.

        2. Jukesgrrl

          I certainly hope your principles enjoy a right-right president since a center-right president is so abhorrent to you. And please know I say that being very disappointed with Obama myself. I still think it beats having the country run by one of the evangelical Christians who think gay people can be "cured," a Mormon who changes his mind more often than his clothes, or candidates who think the solution to our economic problems is to give rich people tax cuts and call it a "flat tax."

          1. fuflans

            in my view, the two words 'supreme court' should be enough to convince anyone who is slightly to the left of pat robertson.

          2. Jukesgrrl

            Admittedly, that's been the ultimate factor in every presidential vote I've cast in the last three decades.

        3. OccupytheDashboard

          "I'm entitled to my opinion."

          Yes, yes you are. And by posting said opinion in front of god and everybody, you are open to others who might be of the opinion that your opinion is flawed and juvenile. And of course, you can think the same of their opinion that they thought of your opinion. It's the Opinion Circle of Life.

  15. Callyson

    Dear Mr President:
    While I have been severely disappointed in your willingness to listen to the likes of Geithner and Summers, instead of Elizabeth Warren, and supremely frustrated by your never – ending pursuit of bipartisan cooperation, which you will never ever get, when I think of the candidates on the Republican side I just want to barf endlessly. So can we make a deal? You stop trying to compromise with the Tea Party idiots who want nothing more than to destroy you, you spend at least as much time working for the 99% as you do fundraising. In return, I'll work my ass off for you in 2012 as I did in 2008. Deal?

    1. Negropolis

      You stop trying to compromise with the Tea Party idiots who want nothing more than to destroy you, you spend at least as much time working for the 99% as you do fundraising.

      He's kind of already done both. He totally stopped dealing with the bastards after the debt ceiling debacle, and has in a very sustained fashion pushing 99% policies the last few months.

      1. flamingpdog

        I was reading a story earlier this evening quoting him on economic policy and I realized as I read it that it was a total rip-off of what Elizabeth Warren said in her recent video that's been going around the internets recently. I just hope it's for real and not another electoral campaign con job.

        1. imissopus

          Don't know what he said, but he's talked about the same kind of stuff for quite some time (see his speech earlier this year in which he basically rebuked Paul Ryan, or even better, his "spread the wealth" exchange with Joe the Plumber that wound up making that guy famous in '08).

        2. Negropolis

          Oh, it's a total triangulation or political calculation, but the Tea Party allowed this president a reason to cut them off forever after the debt ceiling debacle. So, yeah, it's all political but I'll take it if it works for us. He doesn't have to pretend that they are honest brokers, anymore. In fact, politically, he can't pretend that they are honest brokers because America doesn't see them as such, anymore. The shelf-life of that movement was short as hell.

      2. Callyson

        And here's hoping he sustains that through 2012. Because I can't take the thought of any of these Reeps heading to the White House.

    2. RavenRant

      Don't forget Robert Rubin, the bipartisan champion of graft, best paid whore in history, honored member of Obama's economic council. I, too, will vote 'lesser of two evils' 2012. But don't tell me Mr. Hope and Change campaigned as a center right candidate. He capitulated before he was inaugurated.

      If we wanted another term of triangulating Clinton, wouldn't we have voted for Clinton in the primary? Obama had a huge margin of victory, a solidly democratic House and Senate, and immediately started chasing 'consensus' with people who openly and continuously showed their contempt for him and the country without subterfuge.

      I hope his newfound discovery that, heck, he's a democrat after all(!) is something more than a campaign stunt, but I'm not optimistic.

      Democrats: Sure we're corporate whores, but at least we're not bat shit crazy corporate whores! Fired up? Ready to go!

  16. twoeightnine

    I like how the national news is covering this right now. Anderson Cooper is talking about a dead girl, Nancy Grace is probably talking about some dead girl, Faux News is running a Greta Van Sushsushshsuern repeat and on Storage Wars, Barry is still awesome.

  17. Dok-cupy Everything

    Funny, I was just reading about Nixon's 1968 ads taking advantage of the riots at the Chicago convention. Never mind that it was the police rioting.

    "No black people were seen rioting in commercials like these…Instead, only the aftereffects of black rioting were shown: rubble and flames. Rioting white hippies in Chicago were thus a visual godsend." –Rick Perlstein, Nixonland

  18. RadioOcupados

    What's beyond the tuning capability of iRadio is the need for Obama to gather a billion Ameros for his re-election. Srsly, what is the point? More e-mails in asking me for money? A stockpile for lame anti-Romney ads? Another few armored buses? More fucking bumper sticker-worthy-teevee commercials for the precious centrist "independents?"
    Whatever anyone says about our Occupado® friends, one theme consistently apparent is how money has to be uncoupled from the political process. Until then, our two-party-corrupt system is a sham and a shame.

  19. BarackMyWorld

    You know WHO ELSE used uniformed operatives to suppress political opposition in a time of national turmoil?

  20. MilwaukeeKent

    Oakland cops, from all evidence what can you say? If they can give the police everywhere a bad name they'll do it. The kind of unprofessional doofus goofballs that act first and think later. Just the kind that would rather give an elevator ride and get their jollies on a serious criminal, tossing the case, as see it through to conviction. Less time in court and more time on the street cracking heads. What better to work out on — from their view — than a peace-and-love crowd. Sargeant Shamar Thomas, Oakland needs you.

  21. imissopus

    What is the point of this dumb rant? I can see how in an overly fevered imagination this weird geographic confluence of events could be viewed as a sort of "let them eat cake" moment, which then gets turned into an excuse to list every grievance against Obama you can think of. I know, I know, we're all supposed to be outraged by this juxtaposition of Obama at a five-grand-per-head fundraiser while OWS is getting teargassed across the Bay, but a) he has nothing to do with that and b) last I checked OWS protesters were rejecting support from politicians anyway because they are angry at both parties and don't want the movement to be co-opted by one or the other, plus c) there are a lot of rich liberals in California who still like the guy (it's Pelosi's district for chrissakes) and it's not as if MIttens is going to be turning down checks from country clubbers in Charleston, so he's got to fight fire with fire. It's not as if anyone is going to be talking campaign finance reform before next year, not that anything could pass Congress anyway. So this whole piece just winds up coming off as unhinged and silly.

    You want to be mad about the tear-gassing, be mad at the chief of police who spent a week plotting it and the mayor who went along with him and then fled town so she wouldn't be anywhere near it. There's leadership for you.

    And as an aside, anyone who has lived in California for the last decade knows, or should know, that this medical marijuana thing is a lot of sturm und drang. Every few years the Feds get a bug of their asses about the issue, swoop in, force a couple of clinics to shut down, and then forget about it. A few weeks later all those clinics reopen in nearby locations and everything goes back to normal. I well remember the clinic around the corner from my apartment in Hollywood getting shut down a few summers ago. A year or two later there were literally a dozen clinics within a one-mile radius. It would probably be a lot harder for the federal government to do shit if we'd voted to legalize pot outright a year ago, but we didn't. So now it's still got a whiff of the outlaw lifestyle to it, and the drug war in Mexico continues unabated because the cartels can still make shitloads of money off weed as long as it's illegal here, and all that gives your stricter law-and-order types more leverage in the pro-prosecution argument.

    But all those Humboldt County growers were afraid of being pushed out of business by legitimate industrialization of the industry, so they voted against legalization, and now a few of the clinics and cancer patients they supply might suffer. Yes the DOJ should be just leaving it alone, but us Californians have given them all the excuses they need.

    Meh, whatever. Don't like Obama? Don't vote for him. But give the Hunter-S.-Thompson-writing-about-Nixon shtick a rest. It's boring and barely makes sense.

    1. PoopFilledSquadCar

      !! Incredible rant that I couldn't agree with more. But… If Kucinich were in office, he'd swoop down and put a stop to all of this because he's Utopian Super Kucinich, an idealized liberal figurehead!

    2. ShaveTheWhales

      I wrote a comment below, but I type slow, so I hadn't seen your comment when I posted it. I shan't repeat myself. But I will bring up a related point, which is "Did you notice how all the major Republican players eventually embraced the Tea Party?", combined with "Did you notice how few major Democratic players — including the President — have embraced, or even recognized the existence of, #OWS?". I am somewhat disheartened to see Republicans pander to their base, while Democrats ignore theirs.

      Your digression into weed suppression is, IMO, baseless. Obama stated pretty clearly that under his Administration, the DOJ would not go after dispensaries that were operating within state law. This turns out to have been a lie. The results of state propositions do not make it any less of a lie. Excuses, schmecxcuses, it's a lie.

      As it happens, I like Obama less and less as a politician (though he seems to be a fine person), but I still expect to vote for him instead of Cthulhu, whoever Cthulhu turns out to be. I won't fail to vote, but as of right now, this will be my least enthusiastic vote for President since I voted for HHH in 68.

      1. GhostBuggy

        "I still expect to vote for him instead of Cthulhu"

        You won't vote for Cthulhu? Why settle for the lesser evil?

      2. imissopus

        Two points:

        1) A lot of the weed clinics are not operating under state law, particularly here in L.A. They are supposed to be non-profit collectives, but there is a suspicion that more than a few are collecting very huge profits, or are unlicensed, and even in a few cases are suspected of being run by local gangs. Basically, they are unsanctioned business storefronts. Another point about the clinics: Mexican cartels bring a fair amount of weed across the border and some of it is probably finding its way into the clinics. That's huge profits for the cartels to fuel the drug war that's so out of control along the border, and the Mexican government is very unhappy with the U.S. over this. I suspect that this move by the feds is in part to soothe the Mexicans. I'd prefer we go the other way and legalize it and take away the impetus for illegal smuggling, but I can see where the government's thinking comes from (I should note I've been doing a lot of research on this issue for a writing project.)

        2) Regarding OWS, I think it's more complicated than treating that movement as some sort of left-wing mirror image of the Tea Party that Dems should embrace because the Reps embraced the TP, but let's leave that aside. The point I want to make is this: there seems to be a mixed message about whether OWS even WANTS to be embraced by the Dems. I've seen many comments from people, particularly around here, who agree with you. But I have also seen more than a few comments from members of the movement who, as I said, are equally disgusted by both parties and are not interested in Dem support, at least partly because they do not WANT to be co-opted. So that whole conflict still has to shake out and get resolved. Besides, OWS has only been around for what, six weeks? It took some time for the Reps to embrace the Tea Party, and they had a specific issue to coalesce against (the health-care bill) that could be easily defined. OWS's complaint is less specific, so it's going to take some more time to figure out if there even is common ground with the politicians. That's the whole point, right, that it's a leaderless movement that could spin off into fighting for a bunch of different issues? OWS at least has got politicians talking about income inequality and economic justice much sooner than the Tea Party got them talking about across-the-board spending cuts. Bottom line, it's going to take more time even if Obama gives everyone a big hug today. Some of us have been waiting years for even this much to happen, it needs more than six weeks to get some momentum.

      1. imissopus

        Yeah! Disagreement with someone's point of view is so unamerican! Ken should banhammer that penguin-loving schmuck so he never has to have his views challenged!

        1. NeonTrotsky

          Did I say you should be banned or can't disagree? No. I commented on your 'give it a rest' BS. If you don't like Ken's writing on his own blog then you can give yourself a rest by not reading it.

          1. Cicada

            I, for one, will take your advice. Fuck enabling this puerile bullshit.
            There are plenty of blogs out there that don't pander to morons like you, and I prefer to give them my pageviews.

            Thanks for the wake up call, NeonTrotsky!

    3. snoopyfan2010

      Don't hold back Opus. But you know what else would drive the price of pot down? If people stopped using it. That's the only reason prohibition didn't work, because human's not under the influence are not as profitable. Because if making something illegal was the road to high profits, they would not have allowed alcohol to be made legal again.
      Just my opinion.

      1. imissopus

        I agree, but the chances of that happening are beyond slim. If anything attitudes towards it have gotten more permissive. People like changing up their consciousness, whether they use pot, booze, caffeine, or simply stand in one spot and spin around really fast a whole bunch of times.

        1. snoopyfan2010

          And wouldn't you know it, I just saw a report saying that spinning is going to be outlawed in California.

  22. ShaveTheWhales

    Fuck, this is depressing. It's not like it's the first time the OPD has gone batshit on protesters, but doing it while the Democratic President was five or six miles away — stupid timing or fabulously malign timing? And, apparently, the Presidential commentary on the past two days of crackdowns will be <… >.

    I don't want to get into detailed arguments with Obama supporters. I will vote for the Prez next November, because he will be, by far, the least of any available evils. But, you know, the very first election I was able to vote in, I voted for Hubert Humphrey. With just about as much enthusiasm as I currently have for President Obama.

    1. dennis1943

      I for one am incredibly sick and tired of "lesser evils"………….in 2008 i finally get to embrace a candidate without reservation and three years later from the heights of euphoria to the current stagnant cesspool i have fallen……..I'll still vote for him, the alternatives are beyond accurate description in polite terms,but i guess it's back to holding my nose…..

  23. schvitzatura

    1971, Hong Kong: The Esprit Far East Group is born when Susie and Doug Tompkins meet Michael Ying, the former Group Chairman and Shareholder of Esprit

    And the vision of boomer-inspired sweatshop-less clothing globalism began…

  24. MiniMencken

    Well, the man is a one-term President, despite the fact the Repugs are in total self-destruct mode. So sad.

    1. Negropolis

      I see that you went on vacation to The Future. What else did you find going on in November of 2012?

  25. donner_froh

    I disagree with much of what the President has done and not done in policy matters and on the political front. I wish he had done a lot of things differently. But he does seem to have a commitment to deepening he welfare state and broadening its reach so I will vote for him in 2012 and will do GOTV work in the racially mixed suburb of Detroit where I live.

    Every one of his possible opponents want to shred what little remains to provide income, health care and even a bit of dignity to the poor, sick and aged.

    1. finallyhappy

      As well as demonzing gay people, women(ok, women's rights), immigrants and minorities. I don't want to live in a Handmaid's Tale

    1. Oblios_Cap

      The only thing that surprises me is that it has taken the fuckers so long to start the crackdowns.

    1. Numbat_Dundee

      Every time you rape a Thracian, the ghost of Spartacus (who was Thracian for the benefit of those of you who haven't got a clasical education) girds his loincloth and points his masculine chin in your direction and says:
      "I'm Spartacus!".

  26. BlueStateLibel

    Breaking from Reuters: "Libyan, Egyptian Governments Warn U.S. Government to Exercise Restraint when Confronting Protesters" (credit: Andy Borowitz).

  27. RavenRant

    "And understand this: If American workers are being denied their right to organize and collectively bargain when I’m in the White House, I’ll put on a put on a comfortable pair of shoes myself. I’ll walk on that picket line with you as president of the United States.”

    I guess he was incognito in Wisconsin, Michigan, and Iowa?

  28. BaldarTFlagass

    “I don’t even know what he stands for,” said Susie Tompkins Buell, a co-founder of the Esprit de Corps clothing company and one of the most generous Democratic Party donors in the nation

    "Why have you sold us out, Barry?"

    "No, listen. I thought you understood. It's business, that's all it is. You still don't get it. There ain't no countries anymore. They're running the whole show. They own the whole planet. They can do whatever they want. What's wrong with having it good for a change? Now they're gonna let us have it good if we just help 'em. They're gonna leave us alone, let us make some money. You can have a little taste of that good life too. Now, I know you want it. Hell, everybody does."

    "You'd do it to your own kind?"

    "What's the threat? We all sell out every day, might as well be on the winning team. See you, boys."

  29. BaldarTFlagass

    The reason the President didn't slip into his tights & cape and zip on down to the save the crowd from the police is that, because of the advent of the cell phone, there are no longer any phone booths/changing stations.

    1. Negropolis

      Who would have ever thought. It wasn't Kryptonite that killed Superman, but the obsolescence of the payphone. What an insidious development this cell phone.

      It's a regular whodunit. Dr. Cooper in the Motorola Lab with the payphone.

  30. vulpes82

    Oh Ken. I don't even know what your point is. Actually, I think I know what your point is, I just think it's stupid. Sorry.

  31. OccupytheDashboard

    Every time I see Leno, I can't help but think of Bill Hicks' take on him.

    "He's a fucking blood sprinkler!!"

  32. LiveToServeYa

    Oh, indeed, Obama should've picked Jay up, rushed over to the protests and used him as a riot shield against the police. I'm sure Leno could've sucked up a lot of teargas all by himself. And that's entertainment!

  33. lulzmonger

    I'm sure the Oakland Imperial Stormtroopers wouldn't time such a crackdown to coincide with a local appearance of Teh Kenyan Socialist Antichrist so as to make Obama look like an insensitive dick, knowing that there'd be folks on both left & right unable to resist playing "Compare & Contrast" with the two events … because their reputation for fair play is legendary, amirite?

  34. WeHaveIssues

    I quote: " To those men and women, to those foot soldiers for justice, know that this monument is yours, as well. Nearly half a century has passed since that historic March on Washington, a day when thousands upon thousands gathered for jobs and for freedom. That is what our schoolchildren remember best when they think of Dr. King."

    And so today, you sit on the sidelines at a fundraiser while those who take up this generations battle, foot soldiers, get tear gassed in America by Americans. Barack Obama – who the hell are you?

  35. snoopyfan2010

    Does anyone else remember the Oath Keepers from when Obama was elected? I thought the police decided that they weren't going to attack their fellow citizens during the Obama administration.

  36. An_Outhouse

    On my way to Oakland. It been a fantasy of mine for a long time to be told to 'submit' by large men in uniforms.

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