An Introduction: Welcome Crooks & Liars Readers

Thanks to John Perr over at Crooks & Liars for rounding my last post up along with Nevada Progressive, Kevin Drum and The Political Carnival. I’m flattered and honored to be included in such distinguished company.

Some of you may have encountered me before over at Democratic Underground, where I went by the handle Burt Worm. For the rest of you, I’ve been keeping this blog for a little over a year, sometimes with more attentiveness than others. If you look at the word cloud down the right margin a ways, you’ll get an idea of my interests. As of today, #OccupyWallStreet is still my most covered topic (tangentially, usually, these days anyway). But I also obsess over Ron Paul, libertarianism and “anarcho”-capitalism because the ideas at the heart of their philosophies, which I tend to argue with, I think are essential for understanding what’s going on in the US and the world today. I’ve also been a bit obsessed with justice lately. And I won’t even mention my dabbling in theories about the face-eating Miami “zombie.”

I hope you’ll have a little look around the joint, and if you like what you see, you’ll come back and engage with me here. Otherwise, maybe  I’ll be seeing you on Twitter.


Miami “Zombie”: “Bath Salts” or Rabies….or What?

More information about Rudy Eugene, the man who was killed while “eating” three-quarters of the face of Ronald Poppo in Miami last week. His family and friends, while acknowledging he smoked marijuana, had mental health issues and had occasional run-ins with the law (what black man in America has not had those run-ins?), say he was trying to quit weed and was an avid student of the Bible. His mother says she thinks he may have been drugged and dropped off on the causeway where he committed the crime; his girlfriend reportedly blames a voodoo hex.

While police still seem to have settled on the hypothesis that Eugene’s bizarre behavior was the result of his taking the notorious drug du jour “bath salts,” they apparently have no evidence that he ever took any. His girlfriend has even said he wasn’t intetrested in drugs other than marijuana:

The man being depicted by the media as a “face eater” or a “monster” is not the man she knew, she said. He smoked marijuana often, though had recently said he wanted to quit, but he didn’t use stronger recreational drugs and even refused to take over-the-counter medication for simple ailments like headaches, she said. He was sweet and well-mannered, she said.

Of course, Eugene may have successfully hidden a secret drug habit from her, and that may prove to explain his behavior on the causeway. But unless the police are withholding privileged information until the toxicology reports on Eugene’s body come back in a few weeks, the bad drug hypothesis seems no stronger than the one I discussed here.

I only hope the Miami toxicologist intends to eliminate the possibility of rabies as well as “bath salts.”