Re: Darker


Of course, when you just read the final statement, it's easy to think about the little seed of humanity that could have blossomed into a decent person leading a decent life.

You mean like that maybe the cop could've turned out ok?

Also, isn't Willingham an odd person to single out like that? I mean, for all I know the New Yorker article about his case wasn't all on the up and up, but it sure made it seem as if he'd been railroaded.

Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 12-11-14 3:23 PM
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I assume Ogged singled him out because he's the poster child for wrongful execution.

Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 12-11-14 3:26 PM
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I don't know that it's Standpipe's blog, precisely, I should be directing you to. But I'm pretty sure Ogged picked Willingham intentionally.

Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 12-11-14 3:28 PM
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You're right. It's too early in the morning, and I assumed ogged had retained his youthful bloodlust.

Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 12-11-14 3:29 PM
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it's easy to think about the little seed of humanity that could have blossomed into a decent person leading a decent life

I'm not seeing it in the guy you quoted. I don't think the system is reliable enough to take someone's life but I won't be losing any sleep from knowing Henry Porter got the needle.

Posted by: gswift | Link to this comment | 12-11-14 4:38 PM
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So you're not willing to cut him a little slack for having a cogent critique of the system?

Posted by: beamish | Link to this comment | 12-11-14 6:36 PM
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It's not a critique, it's him refusing to take any responsibility to the bitter end. He was a serial armed robber who murdered a cop. He spent his last words being an unrepentant shithead. Fuck that guy.

Posted by: gswift | Link to this comment | 12-11-14 7:04 PM
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Weird, the little dance so many people do. I'm really sorry, but God has forgiven me. "Cosmically, we're all good" does not strike me as a very sorry thing to say.

Posted by: Mister Smearcase | Link to this comment | 12-11-14 7:17 PM
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This one had kind of a weird little non sequitur in the middle of "listen to your parents", "stay in school" (the fuck? is there a 1st grade field trip in the viewing area? it is Texas I guess)

Be careful before you sign anything with your name. Never, despite what other people say.

Posted by: gswift | Link to this comment | 12-11-14 7:22 PM
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I love that this guy took his last moment to stick it to Gerald.

To Gerald: you're a zero.

Posted by: gswift | Link to this comment | 12-11-14 7:26 PM
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So from this it looks like there was never a case of Texas police killing a handcuffed 13-year-old. But there was this:

Jose Campos Torres: On May 5, 1977, Houston Police officers arrested an Army veteran named Jose Campos Torres in a bar on Houston's East End. On the way to the city jail, the police officers stopped along the banks of Buffalo Bayou and beat Torres. Later, when they tried to book the injured 23-year-old Vietnam veteran, other officers told them he had to be treated at the hospital first. Instead, the officers took Torres back to the bayou, beat him again, and pushed him into the water. Torres couldn't swim and drowned. His body was found on May 8, 1977. After a state trial, the officers involved were given probation and fined $1 each.

Posted by: Josh | Link to this comment | 12-11-14 7:34 PM
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11: Yeah, I've heard of that one. It's pretty bad. But Porter isn't about justice, he's just looking to fling some shit.

Posted by: gswift | Link to this comment | 12-11-14 7:38 PM
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Elroy Chester might have a blind spot when it comes to talking about himself.

Elroy Chester wasn't a bad man, I knew me. A lot of people say I didn't commit those murders, I really did it.

Posted by: gswift | Link to this comment | 12-11-14 7:41 PM
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I tell you frankly and openly, I am for force. I have already told Captain Schaack, "if they use cannons against us, we shall use dynamite against them." I repeat that I am the enemy of the "order"of today, and I repeat that, with all my powers, so long as breath remains in me, I shall combat it. I declare again, frankly and openly, that I am in favor of using force. I have told Captain Schaack, and I stand by it,"if you cannonade us, we shall dynamite you." You laugh! Perhaps you think,"you'll throw no more bombs"; but let me assure you I die happy on the gallows, so confident am I that the hundreds and thousands to whom I have spoken will remember my words; and when you shall have hanged us, then--mark my words--they will do the bombthrowing! In this hope do I say to you: I despise you. I despise your order, your laws, your force-propped authority. Hang me for it!

Posted by: Louis Lingg | Link to this comment | 12-11-14 7:42 PM
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Moby Hick always enjoys people who refer to themselves in the third person.

Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 12-11-14 7:44 PM
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This one is a lot of things:

The Polunsky dungeon should be compared with the Death Row Community as existing not living. Why do I say this, the Death Row is full of isolated hearts and suppressed minds. We are filled with love looking for affection and a way to understand. I am a Death Row resident of the Polunsky dungeon. Why does my heart ache. We want pleasure love and satisfaction. It. The walls of darkness crushed in on me. Life without meaning is life without purpose. But the solace within the Polunsky dungeon, the unforgivesness within society, the church Pastors and Christians. It is terrifying. Does anyone care or who I am. Can you feel me people. The Polunsky dungeon is what I call the pit of hopelessness. The terrfying thing is the US is the only place, country that is the only civilized country that is free that says it will stop murder and enable justice. I ask each of you to lift up your voices to demand an end to the Death Penalty. If we live, we live to the Lord. If we die we die to the Lord. Christ rose again, in Jesus name. Bye Aunt Helen, Luise, Joanna and to all the rest of yall. You may proceed Warden. (began singing)

Posted by: Criminally Bulgur | Link to this comment | 12-11-14 7:48 PM
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I first got to Houston shortly after the Jorge Campos Torres thing. It was a big story at the time.

Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 12-11-14 8:01 PM
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What is about to transpire in a few moments is wrong! However, we as human beings do make mistakes and errors. This execution is one of those wrongs yet doesn't mean our whole system of justice is wrong.

Support for the system from Ronald O'Bryan--killed his kid with poisoned Halloween candy (gave it to 5 others as cover, but they fortunately did not eat theirs). Also Houston-area from around the same time as Torres.

Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 12-11-14 8:48 PM
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The thing about the Jorge Campos Torres case that gets me isn't the actual beating and drowning. It's the $1 fine. Seriously, fuck you Texas.

Posted by: Josh | Link to this comment | 12-11-14 8:56 PM
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Has anyone tried the Ghostbusters II quote. "Death is but a door. Time is but a window. I'll be back."

Very memorable.

Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 12-11-14 10:05 PM
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The bizarre quasireligious ceremonial aspect around the executions is actually one of the worst features of the death penalty as practised in the US. Years on death row, official last words, last meals, official witnesses, last-minute appeals and stays of execution, baroque and uncertain methods of killing ... it's like watching an auto da fe. If you must do it, hang them in private, in dignity, and above all quickly. Timothy Spall's very good film "Pierrepoint" is the sort of thing I am thinking of. One morning, probably not more than a couple of weeks after the trial, Pierrepoint walks into your cell with his assistant and you're dead sixty seconds later.

Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 12-12-14 2:49 AM
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Pierrepoint did some executions for the US army stationed in Britain during and after WWII and he thought the extended ritual was intolerably inhumane.

Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 12-12-14 3:53 AM
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In the 1980s series Reilly, Ace of Spies, Felix Dzerzhinsky, played by Tom Bell, decides in the last episode on direct orders from Stalin that it is time to execute Reilly, played by Sam Neill. He takes him for a walk in the woods, and after goodbyes, leaves him alone there, so be shot by a concealed sniper, the last scene in the drama. Pretty dignified and impressive for an old adversary.

Posted by: idp | Link to this comment | 12-12-14 7:06 AM
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Spoilers, idp. Spoilers!

Posted by: Barry Freed | Link to this comment | 12-12-14 7:22 AM
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Kudos to Krugman's headline writer today:

Mad as Hellas


Posted by: JRoth | Link to this comment | 12-12-14 8:02 AM
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Upon reading the column, I see it's a quote of PK.

Posted by: JRoth | Link to this comment | 12-12-14 8:06 AM
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Discerning what to highlight is a great part of the skill of a headline writer. Maybe. I mostly really like stupid puns.

Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 12-12-14 8:08 AM
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21: Second the recommendation of Pierrepoint.

Posted by: togolosh | Link to this comment | 12-12-14 11:02 AM
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