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By: Paul Leicht, Paul Emerson Leicht
Aug 22 2014 12:00pm
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Learning to Live with the Client & other Issues

Dragon! 

As I predicted last month V4 is alive and well this month and while there are still plenty of complaints about living with it there are plenty of players playing. Though I have discovered that V4 has its own learning curve. To help with that I have written a small partial guide for you.

Adjusting to Version 4. Getting in a game.

Some of you have complained about version 4 (3.4.83.xxx) making it difficult for you to play. And I understand. This has been a problem for me on occasion as well. The main problems I have noticed are as follows:

Sometimes the client freezes mid-game. This is an indication that it may have memory leaked to death on your PC's RAM. Unfortunately the workaround to this is to purge your memory of MTGO and start again. It may be that you will want to reboot your computer as well. It may also be crashing because you killed a process it is depending on that it by any logical sense, should not. the Tablet PC component for example (Wisptis.exe) is apparently required to run the program safely. Killing it leads to crashes midgame. The same goes for the .Net component ClickOnce. In theory once the MainNavigation process has loaded that should be all it needs to run but MTGO leans very heavily on the .NET framework. Which leads to all kinds of fun things.

 a clip of my task manager
Not sure why but this is necessary for operation...

Other problems that may cause you to be annoyed are joining games errors. If you attempt to join a game and it gives you an error message, odds are you are blocked by the hosting player. There is no indication that this is the case in-client so you have to just guess that it is so. ORCs have confirmed this for me, when questioned.

In addition you may find yourself in Just Starting Out playing some poor neophyte instead of a tougher opponent from your usual hang out. I have had this happen to me more than once and it is frustrating. Because the Client does not remember your settings. So remember that before jumping in.

the way mtgo starts you out...

Notice no games set for 1 win, 40 or 60 Minutes or No Watchers will show. 

 

remember to select what kind of games you want to filter too

To avoid jumping into the wrong queue I filter out game types I don't want to play in.

 

don't forget which room you want

Don't forget which room you want...

So to recap: If you want to play say, anyone you encounter for any length of time in Just for Fun, don't forget to change the appropriate settings. Clicking off the check boxes for 2 wins, 25mins is faster (and probably safer) than clicking all options. (If you click all options when setting up a game you will automatically start with Watchers set to yes, 2 wins per match and 25mins time limit.) Otherwise you may end up playing some poor and or new player in Just Starting Out. In which case they may be justified in being vexed with you.

Figuring out how to chat can be difficult as well since the WOTC devs in their infinite ineffable "wisdom" decided to hide the chat rooms by default. Here is how they look if you click on the chat icon in the upper right corner:

How to Chat on MTGO

Notice the numbers in parentheses. Those are the number of players in each room.

You may gather from my comments that I don't find this design choice to be optimal. [Side Note/Rant: And who makes it so that the whole thing collapses when you hit the Alt key??? I could not hit alt-print screen to take that capture. Had to hit Print Screen by itself and later clip it, though in this case it amounted to the same thing. The Alt button should not behave that way except in the chrome of Windows itself. (And I'd argue it is bad design there as well.)]

 

 

The Rich Text Editor (RTE) of Puremtgo has a problem that may be causing some of you fits. The problem is that if you start a new article in the RTE and just start typing, and then save the article it will save as a blank article. The teaser text will be the same, the title will remain but anything typed into the Body text box will disappear. Entirely.  After a few false starts with both Firefox and Chrome failing to save properly, I tried copying and pasting some text and then saving. That worked. Here is the workaround in its entirety.

  1. Type some text into a notepad-like application such as notepad++ (or if you must notepad.exe). (This is a great step to do your spell check and proofing too. You can email a friend a copy of the text file if you think they will help.)
  2. Save the text then copy it.
  3. Open puremtgo.com in the Chrome Browser.
  4. Log In to your author username and click on the "Write Article" link under your picture.
  5. In the Title field put whatever you plan to call your article. (Something memorable is better than something with lots of numbers in it.)
  6. Put a teaser in the summary text box (though this is more optional at this point.)
  7. Paste the text you copied from your text file into the Body area (below where all the RTE controls are.)
  8. Save.
  9. Edit the article in any other browser you like (including Chrome) and begin to format your article. Don't forget to save often.
  10. Submit your article when it is complete to your satisfaction (make sure to proof it and have someone else look it over in plain text form if you are unsure whether you missed any major typos.)
  11. ???
  12. Profit.

 Keep in mind that it is incumbent on you to keep your articles focused, grammatically correct, and interesting. I look forward to reading your articles. 

 

Robin, early on, a beacon for happiness. Such beautiful eyes...

Requiescat in Pacé good souls.

Real Life

A few fond farewells...
I don't know about you guys but real life has been really crazy lately for me. The loss of Robin Williams and Lauren Bacall gave me pause to contemplate my own mortality once again. Something that has been a recurring theme in my experience. Robin was one enormously funny man in my life from my childhood onward. In the 80s he and Whoopi and Billy created a comedy style that made us all laugh without being excessively mean or cruel.

As I have said elsewhere "Farewell mon ami, bon voyage!"  also in case you remember this: "Nanoo, Nanoo!".

Lauren Bacall was another important role-model/icon to me partially due to odd personal life tangents, and her presence on the silver screen. Though her demise wasn't really unexpected due to her advanced age, it was still sad for me. 89 years is a long, well-lived life. She was an enormously talented, attractive and compelling actress. (I loved her wonderfully deep voice.) I highly recommend anyone curious to check out her work. Particularly with her husband Humphrey Bogart.

And in real life politics...
It has been a few years since Occupy Wall Street ended with nary a whisper of commentary amongst our populace / "liberal" media. But we continue to have social issues here in the USA. Particularly in Ferguson, Missouri. Without getting into too political a conversation here, suffice to say there have been riots, police brutality, many photographs of both, accusations of civil rights violations, and overreaction by civil authorities. Photos of police officers behind military grade equipment (particularly machine guns) is quite jarring. We typically expect that sort of image to be seen in war torn nations. (Israel-Gaza Strip comes to mind.) Perhaps in an insidious hard to see way, we ARE a war-torn nation?

hornet nest

And then last night I see in my Facebook feed, the shocked and upset looking face of one Billy Moreno. I am not really familiar with Billy's work at WOTC but he has been fairly visible and occasionally I have read his articles on the mothership. But here he was being restrained on the ground by a couple of beefy RoboCops. (I mean they look like they want to be soldiers not officers of the peace.) From what my friends have posted he was down there in Ferguson providing support to the protesters. Helping them maintain a nonviolent and peaceful protest. And then he is on the ground being forcefully detained by Paramilitary looking Law Officers. Tom Martell started a gofundme page here to help Billy out of his legal troubles.

Billy being arrested for asking for guidance...

Never been in this position despite being a miscreant as a youth.

On a personal note, I have rarely met people in the gaming community willing to go out and risk themselves quite like this. Even though he wasn't involved in the protest itself, except to give aid to the protesters, he still put himself on the line for his beliefs. I don't want to go on a rant bashing American Police departments for overzealous behavior, poor training (leading in some cases to innocents being shot), or why this sort of thing is allowed happen at all, in a nation dedicated in large part to freedom of speech. I do want to spend a moment to thank Billy for doing something I would find impossible at this time in my life. I hope the powers that be figure out how to resolve the situation in Missouri in a just and fair manner expeditiously. I also hope that reason takes over and mitigates any further harm to our people, and the American ideal. And speaking of being part of an experience bigger than one's self...

Community

2013 Community Cup Stream with commentators.

Once again, it is that time of the year. Though the time changes annually, (as the folks at WOTC never seem to be able to coordinate times consistently for something as simple as their annual celebration of Magic Online's anniversary, much less the Erik "Hamtastic" Friborg Community Cup event) it is now time to watch eight members of the community beat down the wizards yet again.

Yes it is time for the community cup challenge and as in years past I have some commentary on it. Erik really loved us. I mean his actions spoke volumes about how much we meant to him. He was a leader and booster and player and philosopher and entertainer. All for our community. He had his faults like any of us, just so you don't think I mean solely to idealize him. But his faults also were his blessings. He cared too much, but that was often to our benefit. After all, Magic Online -- indeed Magic the game itself, is merely a game at its most basic. But the people who enjoy it, are by our very act of playing, gathered into a community.

This year, instead of working within the confines of the Magic Online community, Wizards has invited members from around the globe who play the game and create content for it, in its wider incarnation. The world of paper MTG. I don't know if any of the invitees actually had accounts on MTGO prior to their invites. (They do now though, if only temporarily. Each gets a god account, and those accounts have been enabled already.)

As I said in comments elsewhere I didn't at first recognize any of the Invitees and this raised my ire. (And later caused me a little embarrassment as some I did recall.) I strongly desired to see names of players known to me, or at least somewhat famed on Magic Online. But this is wrong-headed. After AJ_Impy and co at Freed From the Real elucidated on the players and their various histories within the game and why they are significant to the larger MTG community, I was able to see the bigger picture:

Erik's Cup.



We are honored by their participation. I hope they once again bring defeat to the WOTC team and Erik's cup home for us. I hope also that the games and coverage won't merely be perfunctory. So often something well hyped comes off as disappointing in execution and I really want the CCC to not be that as it has in years past.

And Back to Brewing.

I thought, because I disliked the way the v4 editor in the client works, I would find deck building a stifling, frustrating and boring experience. And yes at times I have had ideas stifled by stupid little things. Like I forgot that I'd set my collection only show non-foils (because I loathe foils Online but more to the point, because I was looking for cards I don't own and didn't want to see a zillion copies of the same card cluttering up the screen.) This meant I couldn't find my Liliana Vess (from Lili vs Garruk) because it is foil. I happen to like that version because of the art so I have kept it over the years.

However despite the foibles and frustrations with working with the stripped down client, it is in some ways much easier for me now that I have allowed it to become habitual. That is part of the problem with anything new software-wise. We need to adjust our habits and allow for a certain amount of automatic intuition to kick in. At least I find that to be the case for me. As a result, I find my brewing habits undiminished from v3. Shocking as that may be, and as much as I dislike the client I find it functional for my main purposes. I am still unamused by the chat system and let's not discuss trading. Yet. Perhaps in a month or 3.

Standard...
I have been playing lots of Vintage with the advent of VMA but then M15 came around and I found myself needing to play with the new toys. This is the wonderful twilight time of Standard magic where we get two core sets to play with plus two full cycles. Interesting things can happen if you are a brewer at this time.

Bouncing Spirits
A Standard format list by Winter.Wolf

Creatures
4 Quickling
4 Faerie Impostor
4 Omenspeaker
4 Hopeful Eidolon
16 cards

Other Spells
4 Spirit Bonds
4 Peel from Reality
1 Triplicate Spirits
4 Detention Sphere
4 Supreme Verdict
2 Devout Invocation
2 Revoke Existence
21 cards
Lands
8 Plains
8 Island
4 Evolving Wilds
4 Hallowed Fountain
24 cards
 
Faerie Impostor

 

Spirit Bonds is an interesting card because it does two very good things for you. It creates tokens and it uses those tokens to create a potentially indestructible board state. This means you can play guys that bounce (2 in fact are needed) to create continual if slow board control. To aid you in this endeavor is a play set of Detention Sphere and Supreme Verdict. The former takes out all those pesky enemy enchantments and planeswalkers that might make your little guys sad. The latter takes out the enemy board while allowing you (at least if you have the mana) to retain yours. To help Spirit Bonds achieve better saturation I included a Triplicate Spirits which while expensive gets considerably cheaper if you already have a few guys out. Devout Invocation is a kill card once you've gained critical token mass. Revoke Existence is a necessary evil in the format where Enchantments are ubiquitous.

 

 

Oh wow look at all those creatures. Yes that is right, only 3 non-creatures. As I said, I wanted to play M15 for its cool new toys and I included more than a few in this fun deck which I have made quite a few variations of. This is merely the first. The rest I will list below. A long time internet friend, Tony, who plays semi pro level magic out of Michigan, discussed this idea with me at length. He is a great person to talk to about magic because he really enjoys taking rogue brews and competing with them. And he seems good enough to win a lot too. 

I twisted what he did and detuned it a bit because I just don't enjoy playing Domri Rade against most JuFF decks. The other cards that I left out didn't seem as fun as the ones included such as Yisan, the Wandering Bard. I feel like someone at R&D really thought of me personally when they designed this card. I have long been "Gando (olfo) The Bard" in various online RPGs over the years. And I love searching for creatures to put on the battlefield.

All the fun of Birthing Pod but not quite so broken or ready to be abused. Yet getting reset a low X Hydra with a Quickling via Bard during combat or at the end of an Opponent's turn is pure gold. And like Birthing Pod decks I felt the deck could use Chord of Calling. Despite what people say about its nonsynergy with Genesis Hydra, it is a proven winner, fetching any number of good answers and threats against whatever the field happens to be.

 

And as you can see I cut the numbers of creatures down a tad to make room for other permanents and spells. Oh and Unexpected Results which is probably the card I will miss most from RTR Cycle. Unexepected Results into In Garruk's Wake is quite the death blow to the average enemy's position. Especially if you do it with a good board of your own. I added some random other cards to experiment with what works and doesn't work with Genesis Hydra while reducing the number of Chords. Overall this deck is much more fun to play with while being less consistent. Note the correlation there.


Another deck featuring Spirit Bonds but this one is also featuring one of the cooler new enchantments, Military Intelligence. Which basically you play when you have a few creatures out that can swing. It doesn't matter if they die if you can get more draw. In fact with a few out those tokens become extraneous. The formation of this deck started with Preeminent Captain which I was very happy to see in rotation again from Lorwyn block. Nothing says fun times like having Purphorous out, and swinging with a couple captains, putting more soldiers into play from your hand on the attack declaration step and getting to deal damage with something like Foundry Champion. Champion has languished for most of its time in Standard as being too expensive for its effect but it really does shine in a deck like this. Particularly when it is very possible to get him out on turn 4 with other creatures to make his damage more than a slight jolt.

Naturally Precinct Captain helps keep the pressure up and is in some ways more dangerous to an unguarded opponent than his 3 cost friend. This deck could go the route of the deck above by adding in some of the removal suite from that deck. But I like it this way for now. Ajani's Chosen is fairly questionable for its mana slot but it usually does provide a solid body and then some.

Chasm Skulker was hard to resist putting in because it just grows so big with Military Intelligence and before damage is dealt. I expect great things from this little guy.

 

Back when M15 was first spoiled and I saw Convoke was a keyword of the set I said to AJ how Inspired may make a comeback (well it might rise to become what it never did) in Standard. He nodded sagely (in his inimitable internet fashion) and said "That could work." When I played this deck for the first time in JuFF I got a reaction like: "Oh, I've been seeing that deck a lot lately." But I suspect he was responding to the idea behind it more than my build. Tapping Pain Seer with Siren Song Lyre is what he was talking about...when I played a convoke spell his reaction was more like "Wow that is broken!"

Inspired should have been great when it came out but perhaps that is why they included convoke in 2015 instead of waiting for Theros Block to leave rotation next year. Unfortunately between the fact that Springleaf Drum does not by itself an enabler make and Devotion is currently dominant as a keyword, Inspired didn't get a very nice start. Similar to a lot of keywords in sets with more dominant kin, it languished in ignominy. But now King Macar is getting his revenge. Be warned. Nothing says "I win" like chord of calling in the King during combat, tapping it with springleaf to pay some activation and then untapping him on your opponent's turn to kill whatever survived the prior onslaught.

Pain Seer in combination with Courser is better as is being able to tap it aside from attacking and perhaps risking an unfavorable block. Living Totem gives you something else to convoke and can be a secret pumper if you call him into play during combat. And of course nothing says "STOP!!!" like Chord of Calling for 3cmc into Hornet Nest, blocking something without trample and making a bunch of tokens after damage.

The single Ensoul Artifact is in there to provide another way to use your low cost artifact support cards. It probably doesn't belong but it has felt good to suddenly have a 5/5 attacker out of the blue.

I was going to make a deck featuring Nissa, WorldWaker but her price climbed quickly out of range (for now). My thought was to use Ensoul Artifact and Darksteel Citadel, and Nissa to create threats out of thin air with Genesis Hydra, Prophet of Kruphix, and company lending support. I may yet build such a deck but for now I leave you with this final Standard format decklist...

 

And because I don't think you have read enough yet...
I plan to reserve some space every month to talk about what columns, authors, and articles I am most enjoying on the site. I won't be giving slops though. I leave that up to commenters who feel the need to be critical. Keep in mind, if you do give criticism to someone, especially a newer author, temper it with something positive. If you really have nothing positive to say about an article just leave it alone. That is usually enough of a criticism by itself to make most authors conscious of their product's failure.

My Favorite Article(s) of the Month:
This month's spotlight rests on the series "The Modern Perspective" by Procrastination (Christopher Giovannagelo). In particular I liked the last few articles by this author. His writing makes me want to play Modern again even though I have been resisting said format for a while. (It became hard to tolerate in Just for Fun where I usually play so I stopped for a while.) The last regular writer on here to inspire me to play a format is our sometimes absent Lord Erman. In this article, Procrastination takes us from a simple casual deck to something quite a bit meaner. Which is also reminiscent of Erman's style. The ideas are well explained and the end deck just feels ready to go.

Procrastination often finds a deck idea that is somewhat rogue (or discarded by pros because it wasn't top tier enough) and talks about how to win with it in a very spiky environment. (He doesn't use that term though.) The last one covered a subject dear to my heart, (anything with 'larks in it makes me smile) and this month he covered red decks but not just any red decks. Ones with devotion. My rating of last Month's article is , and this month's is not far behind. Go read.

Shout-outs should go out to my perennial favorites: State of the Program, Freed From the Real, Diaries of the Apocalypse, and also the current article by Alex Ullman. I should also note to those I haven't mentioned, I may do so in future articles as I intend to review articles that most strike me within the time period between each article. In the meantime I plan to read as many articles on the site as I can make time for. Also, in advance, thank you for spending the time to join me in writing for this site. 

Parting Thoughts...
We are in transition always. Everything we experience changes us. Sometimes for the better, sometimes not so much. Life, death, babies, old people, songs, dancing, laughter, crying, calamities and celebrations...all are part of the natural rhythm of living. So why is it so hard for us to adjust to something as mundane as a perhaps currently inferior new client? It isn't like it will stay as it is. It too will change. And we can only hope for the better. Embrace the changes, get passionate and stay passionate about what moves you. And don't be afraid to express yourself. But be considerate. You and I aren't the only ones going through changes. And some of us may be worse off than we seem at first glance. Until next time, have a great month!

Magically,
Paul Emerson Leicht, aka Winter.Wolf and Telir on Magic Online.

21 Comments

Good stuff! Helpful, by AJ_Impy at Fri, 08/22/2014 - 14:28
AJ_Impy's picture
5

Good stuff! Helpful, informative, creative and thought-inspiring in one article.

Tx- cool article with a lot by Bartimäus at Fri, 08/22/2014 - 14:46
Bartimäus's picture
5

Tx- cool article with a lot of relevant and vivid content. It even makes me missing playing more-
Unfortunately, my experience with V4 is much worser than what I read here so that I am out.
Anyway, more time for Fly fishing- enjoyed reading and maybe try a comeback in some weeks.

It's funny you should mention by Procrastination at Fri, 08/22/2014 - 22:18
Procrastination's picture
5

It's funny you should mention Lord Erman in your review of my articles. While I was on my break from writing, he came back to the site and started writing again. There were several of his articles that were so thoroughly enjoyable that they evoked in me that same feeling you described. They made me want to play this fun side of Standard that I kept reading about. Also, his articles were so well written, it made me miss writing all the more. I kept thinking "I want to be the one putting out stellar articles like this guy".

I take the comparison as an extreme compliment.

For those that missed Lord Erman's series, I suggest the UB Heroic and Angelic Accord articles. Brewing articles at their best!

Thank you for the commentary by Paul Leicht at Sat, 08/23/2014 - 01:39
Paul Leicht's picture

Thank you for the commentary guys. :)

AJ back at you, with your help I am often inspired to write the things that you say inspire you so full circle.

Bartimaus I hope you do play more. Do not give up on v4, it is merely unfinished as of yet.

Procrastination, I suspected as much as I sensed an affinity in your writing for LE's style and sensibilities.

Billy Moreno by Sysco at Mon, 08/25/2014 - 16:16
Sysco's picture

Not sure why you applaud Billy's actions in MO. The big reason there was so much trouble was because people came from outside MO to "participate" in the melee. Billy got what he deserves for not following the police instructions.

I've seen video of what the by JXClaytor at Mon, 08/25/2014 - 16:41
JXClaytor's picture

I've seen video of what the "participators" were doing. I'm willing to stake everything I know that Billy was there to get good work done, and not to throw bricks at police.

Getting what he deserves for helping people, yup arrested three times, gassed a few times, profiled, yeah I'd say he got exactly what he deserved.

I applaud Billy's actions because he saw something that was wrong, and said NO! This Will Not Work!

Exactly. Also I think Billy by Paul Leicht at Mon, 08/25/2014 - 17:23
Paul Leicht's picture

Exactly. Also I think Billy was expressly there to prevent the kind of behavior people are accusing the protesters of. By teaching nonviolence and peaceful protest. That was the gist I got anyway. And I think there has been a strong attempt to obfuscate what is really going on down there by making it about the morons throwing things. Just as it happened in the TSP riots in NYC in the 90s.

Back then, the cops were extremely violent, belligerent and provocative before anything happened and they elevated a mild protest into all out warfare. I am proud to say I wasn't involved in that madness even though it was in my own neighborhood. I don't think there was any salvaging it once the orders came down to arrest and beat people for no good reason.

Wall Street -Zuccoti park had a similar problem in that there were instigators among the cops (mostly white shirt "brass") and no tolerance for media exposure of what was going on. I am not "FOR" protesting in general. I think in this day and age, it only gives the establishment a chance to turn the conversation away from their own failings and point at "anarchist run amok" no matter what the actual facts are.

Fritz Leiber's book Gather Darkness (not a Fafrid and the Grey Mouser book either) said something like "Governing bodies require an enemy. So with religions. Without an enemy, the heirarchy falls to internal weaknesses" I've probably totally misquoted it as I read it years and years ago but the point is. Don't let the tail wag you.

Billy... by Fred1160 at Tue, 08/26/2014 - 11:35
Fred1160's picture

I have no sympathy for Billy. Arrested three times? Really? How many times do you have to get arrested before you decide to modify your behavior.?
I'm not buying the "innocent bystander" story. I think there's more to it than that. He seems like just another outside agitator stirring the pot.
If he'd stayed home, he would have been arrested zero times.

That is true. I stayed home. by Paul Leicht at Tue, 08/26/2014 - 12:12
Paul Leicht's picture

That is true. I stayed home. I didn't protest and I am still here writing and using the internet. Not getting involved is after all the safest path.

Have you even bothered to by longtimegone at Tue, 08/26/2014 - 14:45
longtimegone's picture

Have you even bothered to look at this situation at all?

The police have threatened and arrested journalists on multiple occasions recently, only to release them after hours with no charges. They have fired tear gas at news camera crews and then dismantled the camera gear when they ran from the gas.

There is zero evidence that getting arrested in this situation means you did anything illegal.

Ferguson... by Fred1160 at Tue, 08/26/2014 - 16:58
Fred1160's picture

When an officer of the law tells a crowd to disperse, there is no special privilege for the media. They have to disperse, too.
It doesn't take long to tell from media footage that the crowds were hard to handle. Break it up and send them away. Arrest the looters, the people throwing Molotov cocktails and using firearms.
The media did not help the situation. The media just stirred the pot and continues to stir the pot to keep the unrest going.

Disclaimer: I hate reporters. I used to write press releases for a small police department and without fail the reporters would try to make a mountain out of a molehill. They didn't try to inform the public, they tried to spin every story into something it wasn't.
National media work the same way. Don't slant the story, just report what's happening.

I am the first one to agree by Paul Leicht at Tue, 08/26/2014 - 18:45
Paul Leicht's picture

I am the first one to agree that much of National TV is just garbage. Lock, Stock and Barrel, no caveats. If not for PBS there would be almost nothing other than the occasional Sci Fi programming worth watching. That said I threw away my last TV several years ago and I haven't looked back.

When I am in some establishment that has a tv playing I leave or find a way to ignore it.

So I totally get your bias (thanks for disclosing it.) On the other hand, when something of this level does happen, it is the imperative duty of those reporting on it TO report on it. That is the sole justification for media rights. To ensure that citizens aren't being denied basic civil rights.

And you may say that it is basically just a molehill out of which mountains have been built by the media and agitators. But you can't deny that the Police there have escalated the sitaution, and over used their toys and the force by which they have "enforced" the laws of the land. (What about the right to peaceful assembly? Is that abrogated by one moron with a homemade cocktail? I am guessing that's a question for the lawyers.)

I question whether the officers had a right to attempt to disperse the protest initially. Yes it became a broohaha which got out of hand and thus necessitated clearing out. I still don't see the need for a militarized approach. The only reason that kind of approach is used is to support a tyranny.

Are we now in that stage and no one bothered to actually stand up and claim it? (I would not be entirely surprised if that were the case. We sure ceded a good deal of rights to the "necessity" of security in the face of "terrorism". (*Note: the quotes are because these terms are questionable but often cited*)

But regardless of any of that, Billy was arrested at least once because he dared ask a police officer where he was legally allowed to stand/and or do legal things in the area. That doesn't sound even like civil disobedience to warrant being slammed to the ground and cuffed.

Definitely Not a Molehill... by Fred1160 at Wed, 08/27/2014 - 10:48
Fred1160's picture

This is definitely not a molehill in Ferguson. I wasn't referring to that when I made that statement about reporters.
Reporters aren't satisfied with reporting facts. They give their opinions, their feelings, their beliefs,their slant on the events.
Worse than that, they leave out facts which do not support their take on the news. Check out coverage of these events on several different news outlets and it doesn't take long to figure out which side they support (and make no mistake they do support one side or the other).

Interestingly enough, police departments get their military-grade weaponry from the government and they get it with the stipulation that it must be used within a year or they must give it back. Think that incentivizes their use of it even if it is unnecessary?

As for Billy, I'm not buying that story for a second. There's got to be more to it than that.

Having witnessed similar by Paul Leicht at Wed, 08/27/2014 - 11:26
Paul Leicht's picture

Having witnessed similar peremptory actions on the part of NYPD in recent years (supposedly some of the most well trained cops in the world, according to police trainers I have met anyway :D) I don't have any doubts about what happened. Though if it turns out differently I will accept that just fine.

I expect Mr Moreno challenged the officer(s) by asking perhaps politely, perhaps not, something like "where ARE we allowed to stand??" and for that got summarily dumped on the ground and cuffed. Do you think that is a fair assessment of what might have happened and if so do you think it is reasonable for an Office of the Law (and Peace) to act in such a manner?

Here is a conversation I have witnessed almost verbatim:
"Move!"
"Wait why?"
"Because I said so, that's why!"
"But where can I go?"
*slight tussle, on ground in cuffs, "Off to the jailhouse now, son!"

To my mind that kind of stuff is what made the late 60s so bad. We are on the verge of yet another era like that and I'd really hoped that we could skip some of the nonsense this time.

"It's us vs them",

"Damned Longhaired, pot smoking, hippies, stirring up trouble!"

"They all get what they deserve"
I could go all day with this stuff. It is not hard to see a pattern.

(I watched some of this happening in the 70s too when I was a kid.)

To be fair it goes both ways with epithets being thrown from the other side that are just as blind and insulting.

Yep... by Fred1160 at Wed, 08/27/2014 - 15:34
Fred1160's picture

I have zero doubts about what you said. There are cops who won't take any backtalk at all. They say move, you better move while you still can. I worked with a guy they called Flashlight because he carried a big Maglite and wasn't afraid to use it.
You'd be amazed at the verbal abuse police officers get and when the wrong guy says the wrong thing at the wrong time they will snap.

Ferguson turned into a powder keg. A lot of outside agitators came in and whipped up a frenzy. Add in looters that came in from places like Oakland, Chicago, and New York City and you get a very volatile situation. Notice that almost of the arrested people were from outside Ferguson, including Billy Moreno.

Cite please. by AJ_Impy at Thu, 08/28/2014 - 03:06
AJ_Impy's picture

Cite please on the local/external arrest figures.

Cite... by Fred1160 at Thu, 08/28/2014 - 10:05
Fred1160's picture

KMOX St. Louis in an online story dated August 19th.
93% of all people arrested in Ferguson (up to that point) were not from Ferguson and 27% weren't even from Missouri.

Appreciated. Found an NPR by AJ_Impy at Thu, 08/28/2014 - 12:00
AJ_Impy's picture

Appreciated. Found an NPR story dated August 21st which goes over the figures in more detail. What concerns me is, of the outsiders arrested, 'Most were taken in for simply not dispersing when police ordered them to.'

Just One More Thing... by Fred1160 at Wed, 08/27/2014 - 10:55
Fred1160's picture

As Columbo used to say, "Just one more thing..."
My prediction is that Darren Wilson will not be convicted of murder or manslaughter or anything else.
Graham v. Connor will be the legal precedent that saves his bacon. His lawyers will trumpet that court decision from the rooftops and he will walk free.
The law dogs better be ready that day for the rioting to come.

You are probably right on by Paul Leicht at Wed, 08/27/2014 - 11:30
Paul Leicht's picture

You are probably right on that count. There is really no incentive to punish officers when there is even a smidgeon of doubt about their act being malicious because their job is dangerous and has inherent risks of violence. That shouldn't mean they get to be immune to prosecution but it does mean the burden is harder to prove wrongdoing. "Accidental" or questionable shootings happen all the time and if the shooter is a cop, they rarely get the shaft. Though sometimes politics gets in the way.

"I thought he had a gun and was reaching for it/aiming it at me/at my partner/at some innocent" is usually good enough.

Another Thing... by Fred1160 at Wed, 08/27/2014 - 12:29
Fred1160's picture

Do I believe there are dirty cops? Yes.
Do I believe there are racist cops? Yes.
I think cops are a necessary evil in this world (and man-oh-man is there some irony in that statement).

It's not an easy job and mistakes are made. There's an old saying in law enforcement: "I'd rather be tried by twelve than carried by six."
Self-preservation is the rule on the street.
If I'd been attacked by a 6'4" 300-pound man I'd empty my gun into him and call it a day. Right or wrong is for the courts to decide.

I used to work with a guy who carried a .25-caliber throwdown gun in his pocket "just in case." His greatest fear was a situation just like the one with Wilson and Brown.

My favorite reporter story: I prepared a press release detailing the arrest of some juveniles who had committed a string of burglaries in town. The reporter, a young guy named Jimmy, asked to speak to the chief of police. The answers to everything he asked was right there in the press release. He was desperate for a good question and finally asked the chief, "Have you arrested the victims yet?"
The chief fought off the urge to laugh and said, "No, Jimmy, we don't usually arrest the victims. We feel like they have suffered enough."
Two weeks later Jimmy quit the news biz and went to law school. True story.