Farewell. The Flying Pig Has Left The Building.

Steve Hynd, August 16, 2012

After four years on the Typepad site, eight years total blogging, Newshoggers is closing it's doors today. We've been coasting the last year or so, with many of us moving on to bigger projects (Hey, Eric!) or simply running out of blogging enthusiasm, and it's time to give the old flying pig a rest.

We've done okay over those eight years, although never being quite PC enough to gain wider acceptance from the partisan "party right or wrong" crowds. We like to think we moved political conversations a little, on the ever-present wish to rush to war with Iran, on the need for a real Left that isn't licking corporatist Dem boots every cycle, on America's foreign misadventures in Afghanistan and Iraq. We like to think we made a small difference while writing under that flying pig banner. We did pretty good for a bunch with no ties to big-party apparatuses or think tanks.

Those eight years of blogging will still exist. Because we're ending this typepad account, we've been archiving the typepad blog here. And the original blogger archive is still here. There will still be new content from the old 'hoggers crew too. Ron writes for The Moderate Voice, I post at The Agonist and Eric Martin's lucid foreign policy thoughts can be read at Democracy Arsenal.

I'd like to thank all our regular commenters, readers and the other bloggers who regularly linked to our posts over the years to agree or disagree. You all made writing for 'hoggers an amazingly fun and stimulating experience.

Thank you very much.

Note: This is an archive copy of Newshoggers. Most of the pictures are gone but the words are all here. There may be some occasional new content, John may do some posts and Ron will cross post some of his contributions to The Moderate Voice so check back.


Wednesday, October 26, 2011

OWS -- Scott Olsen's Story, Oakland

By John Ballard

Last night's events in Oakland are old news now, but Marine veteran Scott Olsen remains in the hospital.

==> Iraq veteran in critical condition after getting hit with police projectile during Occupy Oakland demonstration

OAKLAND -- A 24-year old Marine Corps corporal and Iraqi war veteran remained in critical condition at Highland Hospital on Wednesday night with head wounds and brain swelling after being injured in Tuesday's Occupy Oakland confrontation.

Friends say he was hit in the head with a police projectile during the protest in downtown Oakland late Tuesday night.

Scott Thomas Olsen, 24, of Onalaska, Wisc., was admitted to Highland after he was hit on the head above his right eye during clashes with police, said hospital spokesman Curt Olsen, who is not related to the veteran.

"It's absolutely unconscionable that our citizens are going overseas to protect other citizens just to come back and have our own police hurt them," said Joshua Shepherd, a six-year Navy veteran and friend of Scott Olsen's.

Fellow protesters brought him in after he failed to respond to basic questions. Doctors at the hospital said that Olsen had brain swelling and placed him under immediate supervision.

"He survived two tours in Iraq," said Adele Carpenter, a friend of Olsen's and a member of the Civilian Soldier Alliance. "This struggle has high stakes, I really respect the fact that Scott was standing up for what he believes in. He's really passionate about social justice causes."

Olsen appears to be the first serious injury nationwide of the Occupy Wall Street movement that has spread to virtually every major American city -- and several smaller ones

==>  Iraq Veterans Against the War -- Press Release: Marine Veteran Critically Injured at Occupy Oakland March

==> Latest round of Occupy Oakland protests to be closely watched By Michael Martinez, CNN

[Michael Heaney, assistant professor of organizational studies and political science at the University of Michigan] said the Oakland police action -- closing down the encampment -- may have been a mistake.

"One of the things that I've been impressed with the Occupy movement is there hasn't been any violence" against people or property, Heaney said. "It's impressive because the people at the heart of this movement are self-identified anarchists. The Occupy movement is organized by anarchist principles of decentralized movement."

Until this week, the movement had been disciplined -- then the Oakland police eliminated the encampment outside City Hall, Heaney said.

"People are going to respond to that in a not-peaceful way," Heaney said. "Either they (law enforcement officials) expected that this would be the response or they were incompetent not to expect this response.

"When you engage in (more than) 100 unjustifiable arrests, basically what you do is give credibility to the people you're trying to stop," Heaney said. "The smarter strategy on the part of police is to ignore them and it would eventually burn out and people would go home."

Oakland police said about 300 protesters were gathered in Frank Ogawa Plaza, the park in front of City Hall, and began throwing rocks and bottles at officers about 10 p.m. Tuesday after police told the demonstrators to disperse.


  1. Not exactly old news, and regardless, it bears repeating, often.

  2. There's a (slightly repugnant) silver lining to this story of course, in that the cops sure can pick 'em. If the movement ever needed a martyr with impeccable credentials, well.. they got him. Indignant outrage is validated and Reich-wing dismissiveness is muted when it's a criminal-record-free, war veteran who winds up critically injured.
    I wonder who will pay the medical bills? After hearing the horror stories of people waking up from comas to face million dollar bills, it's no small matter. Should the hospital present the fee to the police department? What would be their comeback? "He wuz askin' for it"?

  3. Yep. "He was askin' for it."
    Reminds me of a link I came across yesterday, How to Speak Republican. Includes helpful meanings for common terms when used by the GOP.
    Endangered Species: Animals that have it coming.
    Mexicans: Brown people who have it coming.
    Muslims: Brown people who have it coming.
    Lots more at the link. My favorites are
    Birth Certificate: An official birth record required of all US Presidents, regardless of race, since 2008.
    Jesus: Charismatic religious leader and son of God; born in Bethlehem in the year 0; beliefs include love, charity, enhanced interrogation, privatized healthcare, elimination of the estate tax, and the right to carry concealed semiautomatic weapons.
    Birth Certificate: An official birth record required of all US Presidents, regardless of race, since 2008.
    Constitution (U.S.): The hallowed founding document of the United States, the text of which must be interpreted strictly and amended immediately.
    Seriously, though, as a veteran he may very well be eligible for VA benefits. Anyone already in the system is covered, and when I last checked there is a means test but any veteran is eligible. I know several people with VA coverage who are very satisfied. I looked into it when I became eligible for Medicare but was not eligible due to the means test.
    Should he not be covered he would also be a poster child for healthcare reform as well as the OWS bloody shirt.