Open Thread, 2013.02.11 Edition

February 11, 2013 at 3:38 pm (Icepick) ()

In which one can discuss Chris Dorner, healthcare laws, football and all the other mental effluvia that people acquire.


  1. karen said,


  2. Annie Gottlieb said,

    You could start by telling me: Who’s Chris Dorner?

    And we could talk about the resignation of the Pope. I didn’t know popes could resign! It seems like such a . . . secular thing to do.

  3. chickelit said,

    Chris Dorner is a renegade ex-police officer on the loose out here. Already accused of three murders, he’s threatened more on FaceBook. He’s a polarizing figure and apparently has fans and supporters on Twitter. His capture and trial would be as divisive as the Rodney King’s ordeal and his killing as polarizing as Trayvon Martin’s. Or so they say. Yes, race is a factor.

  4. chickelit said,

    I didn’t know popes could resign!

    Isn’t he covered under the infallibility clause?

  5. Icepick said,

    chickelit forgot to mention that the police have gone on their own rampage. They’re guarding the families of about 50 officers believed to be on Dorner’s kill list. At one location the other night a pick-up truck pulled up near a house under guard. Dorner at that time was believed to be driving a pick-up truck. According to the most recent report I read (about a day ago) the LAPD is now acknowledging at least seven police officers opened fire on the truck. They didn’t identify themselves OR THEIR TARGET. It turned out to be two Hispanic women delivering newspapers.

    But other than getting the number of suspects wrong, the race of the suspects wrong, the sex of the suspects wrong, the height of the suspects wrong, the weight of the suspects wrong, the make of the vehicle wrong, the model of the vehicle wrong, the color of the vehicle wrong and misidentifying newspapers as weapons, they did alright. Reports are that they shot over 50 rounds at the truck (at least thirty of which hit, based on counting bullet holes in one LATimes picture) injured one woman with broken glass and put two bullets into the back of a 71 year-old. One neighbor reported five bullet holes in the entrance way of his house. Given what police carry in LA, don’s be surprised if it turns out to be oveer one hundred rounds fired.

    But the cops weren’t done yet. Some cops responding from nearby saw a pick-up truck coming towards them, thought it was the suspect, so they rammed it, jumped out of their vehicle and shot up the cab of the truck. The guy in the truck somehow managed to not get killed. Reports I’ve read have been unclear on how badly or if the guy was hurt, but the police have thanked him for his cooperation with the investigation. (That last sounds like a joke, but it isn’t.)

    Apparently pick-up trucks are EXTREMELY rare in SoCal.

    Dorner definitely has some fans, but a lot of people in SoCal seem to be of the opinion that the LAPD is at least as dangerous as Dorner.

    Some trivial side notes. Dorner is a fan of gun control, Obama, Feinstein and Charlie Sheen, although he lists his favorite President as Clinton and his second favorite as George H. W. Bush.

    Right now Dorner has slipped the dragnet, apparently into the San Bernardino mountains. But his plans have apparently gone awry, as his truck was found on fire in the mountains, with several firearms in the back of it and a broken axel. So that doesn’t seem to be according to plan. There’s been a lot of snow in the mountains and there’s a good chance he has died of exposure. But he’s already been involved in three murders and the police are completely shitting themselves. (See above.) There are rumors that Dorner learned how to fly a plane, as well. Dorner has bragged that he has more tactical acumen than those pursuing him, and that he’s going to keep coming until his name has been cleared or he’s dead.

    His complaint is that he was fired from the department after giving false testimony against a fellow officer, whom he had accused of kicking a cuffed suspect in the face. he lost his badge back in 2009 (I believe) and as a consequence has lost everything else of meaning in his life, including his spot as a Naval Reserve Officer. His “manifesto” gives a lot of detail on how he was wronged (in his eyes) and asks for the media to investigate it. he doesn’t seem to be under any illusion that he’s getting out of this alive, though.

    Complicating everything is that Dorner’s accusations are plausible, given the history of the LAPD. He mentions that a lot of the people he has problems with were involved in the RAMPART Scandal of the 1990s. (The interested reader can do a search to find an entry on that. Short version: A police special anti-gang unit in the Rampart division was actually committing numerous crimes on their own, including but not limited to, bank robbery and assassinations.) So Dorner’s specific accusations may well have merit. His response is a bit over the top, but so far the actions of the LAPD haven’t been much better.

    Anyway, if you’re in the greater LA area, don’t drive a pick-up truck. Don’t look like LL Cool J. (Dorner looks like a chubby version of the famous rapper/actor.) Don’t look like a middle-aged or old Hispanic woman. Don’t handle newspapers where the police might see you.

  6. Icepick said,

    Okay, so I’ve lived in the time of the third longest-serving pope. And I have now lived in the time of a pope who is resigning, which seems to be very rare. The next pope may actually be black, which hasn’t happened in about 1500 years. I’m hoping for an Anti-Pope, too. I mean, if the times are going to be interesting, then let’s make ’em interesting! I imagine there would be much less trouble with an Anti-Pope these days. I kind of imagine it devolving into a Twitter Feud.

    Hey, hasn’t Benedict’s health nose-dived since he started Tweeting? Internet addiction can be hazardous to the health of the young and fit, how tough might it be on an 86 year-old?

  7. chickelit said,

    I noted elsewhere that Dorner’s name ostensibly means “Thorner” in German which is exactly what he is for the LAPD.

    Dorner’s threat to the families on his “hit list” was all it took for me to put him on my “shit list.” Color me unconcerned about his soul.

  8. mockturtle said,

    From what has happened so far, I’d say the LAPD is a far greater threat to public safety than is Dorner! And the media seem to have shut down their coverage of the overzealous shenanigans of the LAPD. If I were Dorner I’d lie low and just let them sweat. They could be looking over their shoulders for some time to come. Of course, the taxpayers are footing the bill for all the armed guards for officers, etc.

    After reading his whole manifesto, I can see that he is much too smart to be drawn into the we’ll re-open the investigation ploy. Don’t get me wrong–I’m not condoning what he did but he makes some long-overdue observations about how the LAPD is run [and a lot of other PDs, for that matter]. Even my 87-year-old mother is somewhat sympathetic to his cause.

  9. chickelit said,

    Even my 87-year-old mother is somewhat sympathetic to his cause.

    We could have a couple more shootings from over zealous cops or a couple execution-style shootings of people on Dorner’s list. I get the feeling that either would garner support for the man. People would say the cops killed the people on the list to frame Dorner. Dorner is kind of sainted and given a pass, huh?

  10. mockturtle said,

    No, definitely not sainted and not ‘given a pass’. But the LAPD has a lot to answer for and not just firing whistle-blowers. Dorner knows he will die and I pray he doesn’t take any more lives before he does. I just hope people wake up and smell the coffee about what happens to a cop who reports a fellow officer.

  11. chickelit said,

    I guess I have strong opinions on this, obviously. I just think that if you want to be anti-authority, sympathize with people like Aaron Swartz–not suspected pre-meditated killers. It’s a bright line for me.

  12. mockturtle said,

    Anti-authority???? Moi? Hardly! If you see the LAPD as a respectable law enforcement organization then you probably know little about it. You could watch the movie, Training Day, for starters.

    [Editor: Is that were you wanted the italics?]

  13. mockturtle said,

    Oh, crap. Got my italics screwed up. :-(

  14. KMarx said,

    Does Dorner have a make-believe or composite girl friend?

  15. Icepick said,

    Here’s the best story I’ve seen on the shooting of the two women by the LAPD.

    People are going to be less sympathetic to Dorner if attention focuses on two of his victims: The daughter of the man who defended him in his Board of Review hearing and her fiancee. It appears that he hasn’t just made threats against family, but carried them out.

    But the LAPD doesn’t have a lot of good will in the larger community, and the actions in Torrance don’t help at all.

  16. Icepick said,

    Does Dorner have a make-believe or composite girl friend?

    No. There’s a story about an ex-girlfriend or fiancee having a restraining order on him, IIRC.

    But also there are no reports of him getting abused in a football game against Alabama. That is, Dorner is no Manti Te’o. One assumes that Te’o and his family and his imaginary girlfriend are all okay with that.

  17. mockturtle said,

    Thanks for the fix, Ice! :-)

  18. chickelit said,

    People are going to be less sympathetic to Dorner if attention focuses on two of his victims: The daughter of the man who defended him in his Board of Review hearing and her fiancee. It appears that he hasn’t just made threats against family, but carried them out.

    According to Dorner’s manifesto, he justifies killing the children of his named victims:

    I never had the opportunity to have a family of my own, I’m terminating yours.

    Sympathy on Twitter?

  19. mockturtle said,

    No sympathy for his actions. NONE! There is no justification. But for his cause, perhaps.

  20. Annie Gottlieb said,

    Oh, that guy’s name is Chris Dorner. I knew the story, I just hadn’t focused in enough to learn his name.

  21. chickelit said,

    My wife just asked me whether the Pope resigning was allowed. I think it completely fits with his being German–Der Ruhestand is part of the social contract.

  22. chickelit said,

    I looked up Castel Gandolfo where he will be moving to from Vatican City. I thought I had maybe been there but it turns out I had been to Lago di Nemi which is right next door. Lago di Nemi was where Caligula used to have a huge pleasure craft which was lost for almost 2000 years. Mussolini approved draining the lake and the wreck (actually two) were found. The wrecks began deteriorating quickly but were completely destroyed in the Allied invasion.

  23. Annie Gottlieb said,

    Correction, I didn’t “know the story.” I knew there was a cop who had committed murders on the lam. Killing someone’s family? Off the charts. Despite what the Bible says, grudges are not heritable.

  24. kngfish said,

    Is this guy becoming Pope? Whew, that’s a bit ballsy for the Vatican! Oh, wait, I’ve kerfuffled the threads! The further I get from OnlineVille, the more mental I become….

  25. mockturtle said,

    The further I get from OnlineVille, the more mental I become….

    Oh, my! Next, they’ll be coming after you with large doses of Soma [or the digital equivalent].

  26. karen said,

    Ron, at least your sense of humor is still intact-lol!

    The possible ~black Pope~ is from Africa(duh, right?)-Ghana, i think.
    Anchoress has a lot of info- when i first heard he was being replaced, i thought he’d died- hearing an end of the thread of CBS morning news, but thank God(heh) he’s ok. Weird sentence structure- forgive me.

    His timing is kinda strange– Lent starts tomorrow.

    When is Purim?

    “It seems like such a . . . secular thing to do.”
    Funny yous should put it like that because when went to my chiropractor last year and Easter was coming up- we commented on how early it was compared to the yr before(or late, i forget) and i said i thought it was because it’s date is based on the full moon- and the 2nd Sunday after the full moon(got my facts wacked?). She gave me a strange look and said about he same thing as you did, amba- except that it was pretty biodynamical- or some such. You know- the church is so rigid- how could we use the moon??

    Same w/women in the Church- how submissive, 2nd classed they are in the Paternal fold: except- there are female Doctors of the Church.

  27. mockturtle said,

    Purim is February 23-24, I believe.

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