The Old Leather Man was a proto-hobo who has been preserved by history because (as mefites learned back in 2007)
- He wore a 60-pound “boot suit” made entirely of leather
- He roamed a 365-mile path around the state and part of New York roughly every 34 days.
- His identity was a mystery. (Could he have been the disgraced Jules Bourgelay? Well, no, actually - we learned in 2008 that that was a hoax.)
With less than 200 days before deciding who will be POTUS #45, five states hold primaries today: Connecticut, Delaware, Maryland, Pennsylvania and Rhode Island. Following the problems with voting in New York, hopefully there won't be so many this week, although location limitations do not bode well. Since the New York primaries, Ted has cut a deal with John but thinks the convention will be contested, people are eyeing Bernie's email address book, Donald buys a ticket to Seattle but gets his historical election facts wrong while encouraging an academic discipline, John corners the astronaut demographic, Hillary rejects a non-endorsement, Joe is focusing on the Senate, and the new first rule of Abe Club is that there is no more Abe Club. [more inside]
The University of Connecticut Huskies have won their fourth straight NCAA Division I women's basketball championship, dominating Syracuse in the championship game 82-51. Power forward/center Breanna Stewart won the Most Outstanding Player of the Final Four for an unprecedented fourth time (she was also the first freshman to win it, and the first player to win it three times). Stewart had promised two years ago that she would bring four titles home to Storrs, and she delivered. [more inside]
And then there were five. On the Democratic party side, Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders remain. On the Republican party side, Ted Cruz, John Kasich and Donald Trump remain. But there's also the Green Party, the Libertarian Party, and lots of other parties. The dates for candidate debates are fluid; for example there may be a Democratic debate on April 14th. In other election news, the New York Times thinks that Candidate Trump would be "Wildly unpopular", while the Washington Post thinks that Republicans are gaming the voting system in their favor. Cruz and Sanders lead in Wisconsin polls, Kasich enjoys a beer, and the BBC describes five ways the Republican bloodbath could end. [more inside]
Woman Accused Of Murdering Her Abusive Ex Goes Free After Almost 3 Years Behind Bars. This is an update to the post last March about Cherelle Baldwin, who had been in prison for 21 months at the time for killing her abuser. Today, after nearly three years behind bars, she was set free. [Via Democracy Now]
Most American rapes go unreported and unpunished. In part because ideas about what constitutes a ‘‘real rape’’ still hinder investigations and prosecutions, and many police officers continue to read vulnerability as complicity. But there is another unacknowledged side to the investigation of sexual assault: the huge numbers of victims who are children or teenagers. New Haven, CT detectives estimate that more than 80 percent of their cases involve minors — a number only slightly higher than national statistics. Such cases are rarely reported immediately, which means that there is rarely any physical evidence to investigate. "To Catch a Rapist:" How New Haven's special-victims unit fights a hidden epidemic of sexual assault that is disturbingly difficult to investigate. (Some may find the descriptions and topics in this article disturbing or triggering.)
Cherelle Baldwin has been in prison for 21 months for killing her abuser, despite the fact that a Connecticut jury refused to convict her of the crime. [more inside]
"What They Left Behind" is a 35 minute documentary produced by Sandy Hook Promise. Today, the families and community of Newtown, Connecticut honor the lives of the twenty first graders and six adult helpers who lost their lives in that school shooting. No public events will take place today in Newtown. [more inside]
Last week, the Sylvia Rivera Law Project uploaded a YouTube video of Laverne Cox reading a letter written by a New York State inmate named Synthia China Blast, who described living in solitary confinement for the last decade. However, that video has since, at Cox's request, been taken down. (TW: descriptions of murder, sexual violence) [more inside]
After years of debates, notoriously contentious public meetings, and the looming specter of a civil rights lawsuit, a federal mediation agreement between the Town of Hamden and the City of New Haven, Connecticut resulted in the removal of a 10-foot chain-link fence that separated New Haven's West Rock public housing projects from Hamden's Woodin Street neighborhood for nearly half a century. NYT's Benjamin Mueller reports: In Connecticut, Breaking a Barrier Between a Suburb and Public Housing. [more inside]
The Federal Correctional Institution in Danbury, CT (famous for once housing Piper Kerman, author of Orange is the New Black) is converting from a women’s prison to a men’s prison. Where will the inmates go? Aliceville, AL; a location more than 1,000 miles away, nowhere near a major airport, and 45 miles away from a train station. Eleven United States senators sent an open letter to the director of the Bureau of Prisons last month, and the transition remains in a state of delay. Piper Kerman wrote a NYT op-ed with her perspective.
A shrine in Mystic, Connecticut contains the right arm of Saint Edmund, former Archbishop of Canterbury.
The BBC is reporting that police arrived at the Sandy Hook Elementary School, Newtown, Connecticut soon after 09:40 local time today, answering reports that a gunman was in the school's main office. [more inside]
During the first weekend of October, at a Connecticut campground, a group of women gathered. As part of a pilot program organized by the federal government, these women, self-arranged into groups of three called "triads," were finalists for an experimental parenting program. Two of the triads would be selected for the right to be artificially inseminated, the resulting child to be raised by all three women as equal co-parents. While no one was certain how the experiment might turn out, every one agreed that something had to be tried since all of the men were dead. [more inside]
Library Science is an exhibition at New Haven (Connecticut) libraries that contemplates our personal, intellectual and physical relationship to the library as this venerable institution—and the information it contains—is being radically transformed by the digital era. Some examples: Untitled (Suburban Homes) by Erica Baum, Hurricanes by Chris Coffin, and Chinese Library No. 46 by Xiaoze Xie.
Johnny Mac - Trick Shot Quarterback — University of Connecticut quarterback Johnny McEntee and his "trick shot" passing abilities. [4:50 SLYT] [more inside]
Connecticut was once the home of the national bell business, with more than 30 bell foundries based in East Hampton alone. Now a lone survivor, Bevin Brothers Manufacturing, is thriving there, manufacturing everything from cow bells with college logos for the football season to traditional sleigh and dinner bells. (Lifted from girlhacker)
In the midst of so many bitter political campaigns this fall, the race for State Senate in Connecticut's 18th district is a bit different. [more inside]
Yesterday, the New York Times published an investigative report showing Connecticut Attorney General Richard Blumenthal (D) either lied or spoke ambiguously about serving in Vietnam in several past public appearances. Blumenthal is currently the Democratic frontrunner for Senator Chris Dodd's Senate seat, and is expected to face former WWE CEO Linda McMahon (R). Today, McMahon's campaign announced they "fed" the story to the paper and posted the video of Blumenthal's statement to their YouTube channel. More from Politico. [more inside]
Just as a California campaign for a Constitutional ban on same-sex marriage (allowed since June 16, 2008) is heating up the Connecticut Supreme Court has followed suit and overturned bans on same-sex marriage in that state. [more inside]
"Since 1862, many have heard the tale of a wandering vagrant who traveled in an endless 365-mile circle between the Connecticut and Hudson rivers. The strange man only spoke with grunts or gestures and dressed in crudely stitched leather from his hat to his shoes." [more inside]
New Hampshire approves same-sex unions with bipartisan, if contentious support, recognizing both in- and out-of-state unions and marriages. While New York's Eliot Spitzer follows up on a campaign promise, higher courts in California and Connecticut may make decisions on the constitutionality of same-sex marriage later this year, deciding if a civil union is an adequate legal substitution for marriage.
Abu Gharib? Feh. The newest Dark Side: telemarketing abuse. The National Republican Congressional Committee has launched a $2.1 million campaign calling individuals, including those on the Federal Do-Not-Call Registry, with automated telephone messages scripted to sound as if they are coming from the Democratic candidate up for election, in the hopes of driving away support come Tuesday's elections. "Hello. I'm calling with information about [Democratic candidate]," the recording begins, and then pauses for the traditional hang-up. If the recipient does indeed hang up, they then receive repeated phone calls back. This manner of scripting violates 47 CFR 64.1200(b)(1), which requires that "the identity of the business, individual, or other entity that is responsible for initiating the call" be "state[d] clearly" "at the beginning of the message." The New Hampshire Attorney General got them to stop calling those on the Do-Not-Call Registry, at least. (In their best interests, perhaps, due to the $5,000 fine per call potentially racking up hefty fines.) This is going on at the very least in the Pennsylvania 6th, the Connecticut 4th, the North Carolina 11th,, the New Hampshire 2nd, and nationwide.
Sunrise, sunset. A recent Political ad for Connecticut Senator Joe Lieberman (CT-CTFL) includes a few stock video clips featuring a sunset. After it receives a fairly negative response, however, his campaign manager seeks to define the ad differently. "It's actually a sunrise," Gerstein said. "It's very much a sunrise."
Ned Lamont responds to accusations of hacking the Lieberman website. In response to a reported issue with the Lieberman campaign websites, Ned Lamont claims to have nothing to do with it. In Lamont's blog you'll notice, however, that someone has divulged the real reason behind the websites not being available: "Perhaps Joe should contact Diana Fassbender, fassbenderw (at) yahoo (dot) com, the billing contact for joe2006.com at “Friends of Joe Lieberman.” She can ask their host, www.theplanet.com, how to reconcile the account and restore service. It’s 1-800-377-6103—we’re here to help. It looks like a simple case of non-payment. Pretty sloppy by the Lieberman folks."
Have the netroots finally hit solid ground? There's been a lot of debate about how effective left-wing blogs have been in the political process, but tonight a huge factor has just been added to that debate. Fueled by net support from big-name blogs, Ned Lamont has secured the vote of nearly twice the necessary 15% of delegates in Connecticut's state Democratic convention to force a Senate primary against Joe Lieberman.
What would you do with $100 million? OK, scratch that. What would you do if you were the head of a top US university with an anonymous gift of $100 million? Well, if you're Richard C. Levin, you'd take a cue from the Curtis Institute of Music in Philadelphia and decide to let music students in for free.
Rowland resigns. Today Connecticut Governor John Rowland(r) offered his resignation in response to the impeachment proceedings. The investigation comes after allegations of gifts, bribery and corruption in regards to awarding Government contracts. He's the first Connecticut Governor to resign under circumstances such as these. Here's a general timeline of the events that created need for the impeachment.
6000 breathtaking aerial photos of American towns and other sites, with particularly good coverage of towns in New England (MA, VT, CT, NH, RI, ME). All of this by one photographer, Joseph Melanson, whose mission in life is "to show you facets of your environment that you never realized no matter how long you lived there."
22 year old schizophrenic Farrah Russell was rebuilding her life. But when the plug was pulled on the state program that allowed her to subsist, she took her life. Her heartbreaking story is a cautionary tale of the dark consequences of state budget cuts. While politicians argue over tax stimulus proposals that benefit the wealthy, while wild numbers are applied to war budgets, the States have been forced to cut social programs in order to survive. Whether it's California teachers, Connecticut and New York residents dreading tax hikes, Pennsylvania public transportation, or Texas prescription drug coverage for the poor, the States, supposedly United, have been left out to dry. While the States have been forced to cut their programs, groping for survival, Washington remains silent in its mission. It does not remember history. Why do we turn a blind eye to the hidden costs? What can be done about this? And how do we make it stop?
Death to the Prince of Darkness! I have never been prouder to live in CT. We're finally getting some REALLY DIRTY politics.
Se habla español? Not in Connecticut you don't. Or maybe the media shouldn't try reading so deeply into bar room brawls.
How to make $4 million, the easy way. A bankrupt Connecticut couple starts a business and secures state, city, and private funding. Then they go out of business and disappear from the face of the earth.