North Dakota law enforcement personnel attack Standing Rock protestors with rubber bullets, water hoses, percussion grenades, and tear gas, injuring over 160 people and sending seven of these to the hospital. Protestors were attempting to remove two burned-out trucks police had put up as a barricade, forcing good North Dakotans to take a 20-mile detour; police, of course, justified the use of water hoses by saying the protestors were setting fires, though the proper term might be building fires, as in "to keep warm" or "make warm drinks," temperatures being well below freezing that night. (That means, yes, they used water hoses against protestors on a freezing night. Sad!)
The Institute for Southern Studies provides a Harper's Index-style list of voting rights problems during the 2016 election. The Supreme Court's decision in Shelby County v. Holder, of course, opened the floodgates for all kinds of crap, not least of which is the more than 860 polling places closed this year in states that used to have to pre-clear their voting law changes with the DOJ. What we have left, at this moment, is shame -- not for the folks who voted for Mr. Trump, necessarily, but certainly for the politicians who went to great lengths to silence the "wrong" kind of people at the ballot box and did more to enable this monster than even the "liberal" media did.
Michigan state officials ask federal court to block a federal court order to keep delivering bottled water to the beleaguered residents of Flint. Apparently Michigan feels that setting up emergency water distribution centers that not everyone can get to (particularly the elderly) is enough, and that actually delivering clean water to residents is too hard. It sure was easy enough to put lead in their water. And what happened to you-break-it-you-fix-it?
Paul Krugman at the New York Times also finds the Trump infrastructure plan wanting. "If you want to build infrastructure, build infrastructure," he says. "It’s hard to see any reason for a roundabout, indirect method that would offer a few people extremely sweet deals, and would therefore provide both the means and the motive for large-scale corruption. Or maybe I should say, it’s hard to see any reason for this scheme unless the inevitable corruption is a feature, not a bug." Surely, he reminds us, our government can borrow as easily as any private investor can, interest rates being (still) so incredibly low -- but of course Mr. Trump's fellow Republicans, who would squeal SOCIALISM!!!! at such a thing, will eat up the Trump plan, regardless of what they might tell you now.
Finally, from the "Party like it's 1999!" file: Sen. John McCain, famously tortured by the Viet Cong during his time as a POW, says Mr. Trump won't be able to torture people as President because "it’s specifically, in law, now prohibited" and ""a whole bunch of us that would have them in court in a New York minute" if they tried and "no judge in America" would side with them. Those are some big words there; now let's see action.