by Jon DeVore, 02/25/2010, 9:16 AM

From The Columbian:

Rep. Deb Wallace (D-Vancouver) is accusing Rep. Jaime Herrera (R-Camas) of shirking her duties by being absent from the House floor “for hours on end” during key votes over the last few weeks in order to campaign — a charge Herrera flatly denies.

Wallace, who recently announced she is dropping out of the WA-03 race to replace retiring Rep. Brian Baird, D-Wash., doesn’t seem to have an obvious motive in leveling this accusation against Herrera. If this would help anyone it would be the other major GOP candidate in WA-03, David Castillo.

It sounds like Wallace said something at a small gathering, which was then emailed around, and it wound up on the Inter-Tubes. If you do a Google blog search for “Jaime Herrera” you will quickly find that pro-Castillo bloggers down here were rending their garments and howling about this almost immediately, while throwing kitchen sinks, tire irons and brickbats Herrera’s way. (Sorry, I won’t link to those people.) So score one for the brickbat crowd, and remember this the next time someone pleads for civility. These people only have one speed, full on attack, at all times.

As for whether Herrera is actually absent from her Legislative duties too much, a charge she vigorously denies, the rest of the Columbian article pretty much amounts to she said, she said. There are all sorts of legitimate reasons for a member to not be sitting on the floor, of course, but with the near-death of the Olympia press corps I’d wager we’d know more if this were two or three years ago. So I’m not sure what the affect will ultimately be on the Congressional race, unless someone wants to sift through 8 million hours of TVW coverage.

For the time being I’m reserving judgment, and I’ve put out a couple of emails to other members asking for their opinion. If I hear anything back I’ll post an update.

8 Responses to “WA-03 GOPer Herrera accused of excessive Legislative absences”

1. Roger Rabbit spews:

“As for whether Herrera is actually absent from her Legislative duties too much, a charge she vigorously denies, the rest of the Columbian article pretty much amounts to she said, she said.”

This is what passes for “journalism” these days? Or is the Columbian honest enough to admit it never was a newspaper, and is only a grocery coupon mailer?

2. Roger Rabbit spews:

‘Zis Machine Vill Identivy Terrorists!”

From the lab-coat guys working in the Idiots Never Learn Department comes this reiteration of quack science:

“[T]he Department of Homeland Security is set to take technology one step further with a screening system that would, in a sense, peek inside your head.

“The Future Attribute Screening Technology, or FAST, is designed to spot … people who are thinking about carrying out terrorist acts.

“‘The theory we’re looking at here is [whether] there’s a way to look at you … in a specific situation, and based on your presentation, make an assessment that you’re showing indicators of what we call malintent,’ Robert Burns, the deputy director of the Homeland Security Advanced Research Projects Agency, told AOL News. ‘Malintent, as defined by the problem, is the intention or desire to cause harm.’”

Geezus fucking kryste.

When I was a college freshman nearly half a century ago, my Psychology 101 course briefly touched on the work of Cesare Lombroso, a 19th century Italian crank:

“Lombroso popularized the notion of the born criminal through biological determinism, claiming that criminals have particular physiognomic attributes or deformities.

“Physiognomy attempts to estimate character and personality traits from physical features of the face or the body. …

“If criminality was inherited, then the born criminal could be distinguished by physical atavistic stigmata, such as: [L]arge jaws, forward projection of jaw, low sloping foreheads[;] high cheekbones, flattened or upturned nose[;] handle-shaped ears
large chins, very prominent in appearance
hawk-like noses or fleshy lips[;] hard shifty eyes, scanty beard or baldness[;] insensitivity to pain, long arms.

He attempted to construct a purported “scientific methodology in order to predict criminal behavior and isolate individuals capable of the most violent types of criminal activity.

“Lombroso advocated the study of individuals using measurements and statistical methods in compiling anthropological, social, and economic data. Along with the natural origin of the crime and its social consequences, various remedies can then be provided to the criminal, which would offer the greatest effects.” — Wikipedia

Click here to see Lombroso profile of potential terrorist:

If every freshman psychology student was taught 50 years ago that this crap is quackery, why is DHS fooling around with it? Did the younger generation sleep through that class? Or drop out after junior high? We seem to be going intellectually backwards in this country.

Lombroso, if he were alive, no doubt would salivate over this foolishness. After suffering a century-and-a-half of well-deserved ridicule, he might even feel vindicated.

One small step forward for a quack; a giant leap backward for mankind.

3. Roger Rabbit spews:

Er, Jon, in your third paragraph, that word should be “effect” not “affect”.

4. Roger Rabbit spews:

As further evidence that cops are sometimes liars (see, e.g., Rodney King video),

“NEW ORLEANS (Feb. 25) — In Hurricane Katrina’s chaotic aftermath, police shot six people — killing two — as they crossed a bridge in search of food. …

“As victims’ relatives watched from the courtroom gallery, a retired lieutenant who supervised the department’s probe of the shootings pleaded guilty to orchestrating a cover-up to conceal that police gunned down unarmed civilians.

“Michael Lohman, a 21-year veteran of the force, pleaded guilty to a charge of conspiracy to obstruct justice. Prosecutors said Lohman and other unidentified officers conspired to fabricate witness statements, falsify reports of the incident and plant a gun in an attempt to make it appear the killings were justified.”

Roger Rabbit Commentary: This goes on in the military, too. But it doesn’t matter how many times the police and military are caught in perjury, evidence fabrication, witness tampering, and coverups; there will always be sloped-forehead, arm dangling, chest-thumping flagwavers* who attack those who challenge police and military lies as “unpatriotic” and “subversive.”

* See? I know how to play the “profiling” game, too!

5. Roger Rabbit spews:

In other news, at today’s televised health reform summit, “After [Sen.] McCain used time there to complain that Obama reneged on a campaign promise to bring ‘change in Washington,’ the president bluntly told the Arizona Republican that ‘we’re not campaigning any more. The election is over.’ McCain retorted that he’s ‘reminded of that every day.’”

Roger Rabbit Commentary: TV cameras. National audience. Did anyone seriously believe Republicans would use this event for anything but grandstanding?

6. Roger Rabbit spews:

Posts 2, 4, 5 — I just gave you three reasons why who the GOP candidate is for Baird’s seat should be irrelevant because voters of the 3rd Cong. District (or any other district) have no business voting for any Republican, ever. If we don’t fill our elective offices with rational people committed to solving our nation’s problems (and Lord knows we’ve got plenty of them), America will end up back in the Dark Ages. Another Republican in Congress is the last thing our country needs.

7. Roger Rabbit spews:

Also, if anyone missed yesterday’s discussion in the Ross Hunter thread, I just want to remind everyone that I caught Mr. Cynical sucking farts out of his ass when he posted that a state liquor store clerk made $100,000 of “total compensation” in 2009.

Mr. Cynical got that crap from BIAW’s website, which pulled out all the stops in its lameass attempt to smear state employees as overpaid.

It’s bullshit, and Mr. Cynical swallowed it whole without doing any fact-checking.

(Wouldn’t an assertion that a liquor store clerk was paid over $100K a year make any reasonable person even a leeetle suspicious?)

It turns out that TWO guys named Thomas D. Taylor work for Liquor Control Board. Thomas the liquor store clerk makes $13.50/hr; Thomas the warehouse guy makes a salary of about $2800/mo. BIAW’s salary-culling software couldn’t tell the difference between them, so assumed the two Thomases were one employee, and combined their incomes.

Reminder to Mr. Cynical: When you ASSUME things, you make an ASS of U and ME.

8. PB&J spews:

What’s wrong with Deb these days? She’s sounding so moody and hysterical in the press, even in the crap-assed Columbian where she’s been given a free pass since the PB days.

PB??? Not peanut butter or post-Brancaccio,uh uh, that’s shorthand for PRE-BANKRUPTCY.

Brancaccio??? The crap-assed excuse of an editor so afraid of his tiny shadow that he spends most of his time apologizing for his shortcomings rather than watching out for the community down there. He’s has such a classic ACA personality that most just feel sorry for him.