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Thursday, February 8, 2007

Duke/Nifong Hoax: Day #295

Updated - today's items:

Duke lacrosse attorneys met with special prosecutors - Feb 7thABC11 TV/WTVD:
Duke LAX Defense Attorneys Meet with Prosecutors — A spokesperson for the attorney general has confirmed that a meeting, including legal teams for the Duke lacrosse case, took place in Raleigh around 10 a.m. Wednesday, but both sides are remaining tight-lipped about what went on behind closed doors.

"We have a meeting with some of the attorneys general," said Joe Chesire, defense attorney. That's all defense attorneys would reveal about their meeting with special prosecutors.

Defense Attorney James Cooney could be seen arriving at the meeting with several boxes. Sources close to the case told Eyewitness News that Wednesday was the first time the defense had been able to make its case for why the remaining charges against Reade Seligman, Collin Finnerty and David Evans should be dropped...

LieStoppers forum: Defense Attorneys Meet Prosecutors
TalkLeft: Duke LAX Defense Attorneys Meet with Prosecutors
Duke Lacrosse Grand Jurors Could Be Punished for Speaking Out — Two former members of the grand jury that indicted three Duke lacrosse players could be charged with contempt for talking about the case. This all comes as Durham County District Attorney Mike Nifong faces his own State Bar trial for talking too much to the media early in the case.

Senior Resident Superior Court Judge Orlando F. Hudson Jr. said he could not believe it when he heard the two grand jurors on an ABC Television program talking about the Duke lacrosse case Tuesday morning. "It was pretty clear to me that the jurors are in violation of North Carolina law," Hudson told WRAL on Wednesday...
LieStoppers forum: Duke Lacrosse Grand Jurors Could Be Punished
TalkLeft: Duke Lacrosse Judge May Discipline Grand Jurors Who Spoke Publicly
Duke Conservative Union, Duke New Sense blog:
Duke Students Respond to the "Gang of 88" — We present, in full, a Duke student petition responding to the original "Social Disaster" advertisement--placed in the Chronicle by the now-infamous "Gang of 88"--as well as to the behavior and public comments of said Duke faculty members. The petition has been endorsed, at last count, by 196 [update: 232] Duke students and recent alumni, and will soon appear as a full-page advertisement in the Chronicle:

On April 6th of last year a full page ad ran in The Chronicle signed by 88 professors and 16 academic programs and departments at Duke University. Weeks before any indictment was issued, in disregard for due process, our own professors projected guilt onto our peers on the lacrosse team. In the ad they not only tacitly supported the accusations of the now utterly discredited accuser, but praised protestors who similarly rushed to judgment, while levying baseless accusations of racism against our student body...


KC Johnson (see comments): Duke Students Respond to the 88

"Shut Up and Just Let Us Teach our Crap!"

comment: The Duke Gang of 88/87 are busier than a cat covering up crap on a marble floor as they go about re-interpreting their bad behavior and mooning their own students. Anyone who has read their trail of academic droppings has to wonder: how can I get a get a job like the Gang of 88/87 have? It's great - you have a license to slander your own customers, the Duke students, teach your own personalized junk science, and still maintain the full backing and support of your boss, Duke President Richard Brodhead. What a country, what a gig!

Shut Up and Teach
Shut Up and teach?
Monday, February 12, 2007, 6:30 pm to 8:30 pm, Williams Center

Speakers: Pedre Lasch, Wahneema Lubiano, Mark Anthony Neal, Diana Nelson, Charlie Piot, and Maurice Wallace

1 Event co-sponsored by African and African American Studies and Critical U.S. Studies.

2 Against a current of criticism and attempts at intimidation directed at faculty who comment on larger social and political issues, and following the events of last spring, this forum addresses connections between faculty interests and local, national, and international politics. "Shut Up and Teach?" is both quotation and revision of the recently released Dixie Chicks' film title ("Shut Up and Sing") - their response to a campaign of intimidation directed at them for criticizing George Bush. "Shut Up and Teach?" is our way of questioning what it is that we think faculty are being asked to do.
The Gang of 88/87 claimed in April 2006 that the Duke lacrosse party and the subsequent rape allegations were a "social disaster." They were allegedly "listening' to some of their students who said this crime was evidence of rampant racism, sexism, and terror at Duke. But they have presented no real evidence of racism, sexism, terror and violence at Duke. The gang apparently has no obligation or "burden of proof" to marshal evidence in support of their previous "disaster" allegations.

The gang does not want forgiveness. They really just want people to forget about their shameful acts. So they are employing the standard bag of "stupid debating tricks" as they maneuver to slip slide away from their debacle:
Attack the Messenger: Instead of addressing the argument that has been made, people using this method attack the person making it instead. This is particularly easy for many delusional people on the left who believe that almost everyone on the right is a racist, sexist, homophobic, Fascist who longs for the return of the Confederacy and is planning to start throwing leftists in prison camps if they let their guard down for five minutes.
The Gang of 88/87 now say: "Against a current of criticism and attempts at intimidation directed at faculty who comment on larger social and political issues, and following the events of last spring..." Group of 88/87's critics are "intimidators," but the gang doesn't go into any details regarding the intimidation.
The Bait & Switch: When a claim is made and your opponent refutes it, don't try to respond, simply change the subject.
The Gang of 88/87 in April 2006 believed the Duke lacrosse team's crime was indicative of a significant racist, sexist, terror and violence problem at Duke. The gang said: "it is a disaster nonetheless. These students are shouting and whispering about what happened to this young woman and to themselves. . .We want the absence of terror."

Members of the Gang of 88/87 in February 2007 are now saying they are kindred spirits with the "Dixie Chicks," who criticized George Bush and were told to "Shut Up and Sing." Critics are attacking their right to free speech and "artistic academic expression." Never mind all that old talk about "helmeted sports," violence, terror, rape, and a "social disaster." Talk about the old switcheroo.
Enter The Strawman: Tremendously exaggerating your opponent's position and then claiming to fight against a position they don't hold is always a great way to dodge the issues.
Gang of 88/87 in April 2006: The issues are rape, racism, violence, and terror on the Duke campus.

Gang of 88/87 in February 2007: It is all about critics intimidating and infringing on a teacher's right to "free speech." Only their imagined man of straw wants them to "Shut Up." Please speak about any and all injustice. And by the way what about the injustice you helped perpetuate? Please speak up and apologize.
History Will Be Kind To Me For I Intend To Write It: The technique is similar to using strawmen in some respects. What you try to do is to rewrite history, to claim that a debate in a previous time was different than it actually was.
Opinion - Cathy N. Davidson (Duke English Professor, "Gang of 88" member) News & Observer: In the aftermath of a social disaster
ConcernedDukeFaculty.org: An Open Letter to the Duke Community
& above "Shut Up & Teach?" event

And so forth and so on, insert your own Gang of 88 quotes here below:
I'm Not Hearing You -- La La La: Just totally ignoring what your opponent has to say and going on to something else is another technique often used...

Motives Matter, Results Don't: Oftentimes when people on the left are losing an argument or can't explain why they seem to be so inconsistent on certain issues, they start questioning the motives of their opponents...

That's Mean, Mean, Mean!: Once you say that your opponents are mean, evidence, logic, ..., etc, goes out the window and the argument becomes over whether someone is "mean" or not...
Lasch and Lubiano, etc. are lifting the "Shut Up & Teach?" theme from ShutUpAndTeach.org:
TalkLeft: DUKE RESPONSE TO "THE FRAME" & THE "SHUT UP" EVENT — Does anybody want to try to figure out how to successfully sue, in civil court, the Duke Administration and Karla Holloway for disclosing private student information, which took the form of at least quadruple hearsay to the "media." Do we refer to Cash as "the media"...
KC Johnson: Group of 88 Rehab Tour — The second leg of what could be dubbed the “Group of 88 Rehabilitation Tour” is scheduled for next Monday night on the Duke campus...

Stripped of all its verbiage, the central position of the Group of 88/87 is really quite simple: while all other professors at Duke must adhere to the provisions of the Faculty Handbook, these rules should not have to apply to the Group. Instead, Group members should have the right to forward their personal, pedagogical, or ideological agendas on the backs of Duke students, just as they did on April 6.

In the long term, this is an untenable position for any University.

Kenneth Moton, News 14 Carolina:
Gov. Easley sticking to harsh words about Nifong — Hundreds of appointments during his administration and Governor Mike Easley says Durham District Attorney Mike Nifong was his "poorest.” He made the comments while speaking to a law class at New York University last month. They asked him his thoughts on the Duke lacrosse case...

Easley says Nifong told his legal counsel he would not seek office in 2006 but he broke his promise. “When you're appointing somebody who's going to run, you look at them totally differently because you want to know what their skills are dealing with the press and running the office long-term,” said Governor Easley. He also says he thought about un-appointing Nifong. “Once the election occurred and after the primary was uncontested, we didn't want to do anything that would upset the office,” the governor continued...

Editorial - News & Observer:
The governor's tale — Governor Easley is hardly the first person to have gone off to the big city and done something a little goofy. No, it wasn't the fact that he gave a speech at New York University on the theme of public service. More power to him for that. But when someone during the post-speech Q&A predictably brought up the Duke lacrosse case, Easley's rush to distance himself from beleaguered Durham District Attorney Mike Nifong ended up raising questions as well as answering them.

The governor first went out of his way to clarify that he hadn't appointed Nifong as district attorney, but as acting D.A. to fill a vacancy after naming the previous occupant of the office to a judgeship. Nifong came with recommendations as a "good interim" from both previous D.A.'s, said Easley, and added another reason why Nifong was chosen: "...he told us he wasn't going to run." There's the puzzler...was he ever going to get around to telling the home folks about Nifong the interim D.A. who saw his chance and took it? Or was that account just meant for Northern consumption?

John in Carolina: Why Easley stumbled
Editorial - The Charlotte Observer:
Speak up, Guv — Easley doesn't have to go to New York to speak his mind — Most North Carolinians, we imagine, would be interested in what Gov. Mike Easley has to say. Most, we'd further guess, wouldn't want him to have to travel 500 miles away to say it. And if he's ready to say something about the Duke lacrosse case -- and a prosecutor he appointed who has clearly botched the case -- we'd guess most of his constituents would be willing to hear him say it in a familiar state. North Carolina, for instance. Might even prefer it.

But no. As the [Raleigh] News & Observer reported Saturday, Gov. Easley told law students in New York last month that naming Mike Nifong interim district attorney in 2005 was his poorest appointment and that he had the urge to "unappoint" him when Mr. Nifong decided to run for election to the post...

Easley’s Comments Questioned — It also appears, given Gov. Easley’s penchant for appointing failed candidates, that one of our own previous assumptions was inaccurate. Had Durham County voters ousted the disgraced prosecutor in November’s election, Nifong may very well have been reappointed by Easley…as long as he promised not to run again, that is...

Sharon Swanson,correspondent, News & Observer:
Fleeting fame — finally had my long awaited national television debut -- and you missed it. In October, I wrote about my concerns over leaving my 12-year-old daughter at a basketball camp where young lacrosse players were staying next door. After that column, I heard from Mary Ellen Finnerty, the mother of Duke lacrosse defendant Collin Finnerty, suggesting that I might like to meet her son.

Although I am hardly the kind of writer who gets involved in big media cases, I was interested in this mother and her story. I wrote a column about my trip to New York and our meeting. I also wrote a longer account of that interview for Raleigh's Metro magazine, which ran last month. That's when it really started to get interesting...

D. Martyn Lloyd-Morgan, The Liberty Sphere blog:
More Fallout From the Nifong Debacle in Durham — We are now into the third month since the bombshell admission of Nifong was made public, namely, that he consorted with the owner of the DNA lab to withhold the evidence that proves the defendants are innocent. Yet to date, no move has been made to dismiss this case. The Liberty Sphere wants to know why.

Why the foot-dragging? We know Nifong withheld vital evidence. We know he lied to the Court. We know the DNA evidence clears the accused. We know that everyone involved in this case, from the Durham police, to the D.A.'s office, to the Durham judicial system, is eye-ball deep in corruption.


Calculated Risk

MishTalk - Mike Shedlock

Paul Krugman - NY Times

The Big Picture - Barry Ritholtz

naked capitalism - Yves Smith

Pragmatic Capitalism

Washington's Blog

Safe Haven

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The Daily Reckoning - Australia