Your Tuesday Random-Ass Roundup: The Godfather.

If anyone ever went about promoting a Gospel-Pak, wouldn’t it be Herman Cain?

Seriously, Cain has been on a run of looniness that stands apart even among his fellow GOP presidential contenders. Comparing him to General Otis might be considered a compliment at this point.

Speaking of shameful behavior, how about some links?

1. Rebekah Brooks, chief executive of Rupert Murdoch’s News International, resigned Friday and was arrested late Sunday night in London.  The ever-expanding News of the World scandal also claimed Sir Paul Stephenson, the head of London’s Metropolitan Police Service (MPS).  Stephenson resigned over connections to Neil Wallis, a News of the World executive editor who worked as a PR consultant for MPS from September 2009-September 2010.  Paul Yates, assistant commissioner, and the UK’s top counter terrorism official, was the one responsible for hiring Wallis.  Yates failed to mention the hiring to Parliament and chose not to reopen the hacking case back in 2008.  He’s resigned as well. (Brief aside: MPS is the same as Scotland Yard.  The name comes from the location of the old MPS headquarters.  It’s like how “Detroit” is shorthand for “the American auto industry”) (Nicole).

2. And David Carr unpacks the culture of News Corp and the Murdoch empire, which Paul Krugman posits “is more evil than you could possibly imagine, even when you take into account the fact that it’s more evil than you can possibly imagine.” (Blackink)

3. A polygamist family from Utah has what could shape up to be a disturbingly good case against the state’s anti-polygamy law, which criminalizes the activity of celestial marriage. They’re also using a landmark gay-rights law to argue that the state can’t prosecute the sexual activity of consenting adults. Progressives want to tell them to shut up. (Monica)

4. On the whitening of DC. (G.D.)

5. Eight things Yankees journalists – basically, anyone north of Wichita Falls – should know about Texas Gov. and possible GOP presidential contender Rick Perry. (Blackink)

6. In Alabama, judges are allowed to reject sentences from capital juries. Which sounds like a good idea until you realize that judges there have been even tougher than the juries. “The overrides in Alabama contributed to the highest per capita death sentencing rate in the nation, far outstripping Texas.” (Blackink)

7. The St. Petersburg Times editorial board calls on Washington to save Florida from itself and Rick Scott. (Blackink)

8. Food insecurity (better known as hunger) has not risen even with the dismal unemployment numbers, because SNAP (better known as food stamps) participation rates have skyrocketed. Republicans argue that the program is unsustainable, and progressives argue that it works exactly as intended – and we’ve covered the need for food aid before. Speaking of which, are we measuring hunger correctly? (Nicole)

9. Elizabeth Warren vs. Scott Brown in 2012? Salon’s Steve Kornacki says Warren could face an uphill climb against the surprisingly popular Brown. (Blackink)

10. In the wake of one of the driest years since 1950, the Horn of Africa is descending into famine, putting millions at risk and undermining regional stability (remember the violence in the wake of the 2008 electoral fraud in Kenya?).  Right now, an estimated 10.7 million are in need of humanitarian assistance.  A famine early warning system was established in the wake of Ethiopia’s 1984-85 famine, and the alarm has been sounding for months.  The problem is that “it is difficult to sound the alarm when the problem is one of incremental deterioration.”  Somalia looks to be worst off, thanks to a lack of humanitarian access in much of the country and the sharp rise in food prices. (Nicole)

11. A Dallas-area man moved into a $300,000 home for only $16 by taking advantage of a little-known Texas law called “adverse possession.” His new neighbors aren’t pleased. (Blackink)

12. Losing in the Women’s World Cup final “might have been the best thing that could happen to American women’s soccer,” says Brian Phillips of Slate. (Blackink) … And if you want to know why the U.S. women’s soccer team lost: the Americans took 27 shots on goal, but 22 of those shots were off-target. Japan took 14 shots, and only 8 were off-target. The U.S. team also had eight corner kicks, to Japan’s four. (Naima)

13. And even in defeat, U.S. goalie Hope Solo found redemption by reminding us that “we all have unpleasant colleagues to whom we would happily show the door. But in sports, and in life, these people can sometimes change their attitudes for the better.” (Blackink)

14. With NFL Hall of Fame receiver Michael Irvin leading the way, a handful of sports stars are showing their support for their LGBT peers. (Blackink)

15. When Jerry Joseph showed up at Permian High School in Odessa, Texas – the original setting for “Friday Night Lights,” the 16-year-old Haitian refugee’s story seemed too incredible and too interesting to be true. It was. (Blackink)

As always, we’re accepting links, suggestions, comments and compliments in the space below. Especially compliments.


Joel Anderson —blackink —  writes about sports, politics, crime, courts, and other issues far beyond his competence at BuzzFeed. He has worked at media outlets in Texas, Oklahoma, Louisiana and Atlanta and contributed to a number of publications, including The Root and The American Prospect, among many others.