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The latest in our public obsession with sensational murder cases has ended. Casey Anthony was found not guilty of all of the major charges, and those she was convicted of, well, she has basically already served the sentence.

Almost all of the talking heads had it as a slam dunk for the prosecution. I too expected that she would be convicted of the less serious manslaughter offense. I also suspected there was a fair amount of error in the record and a reversal might also ensue.

So it was a shock to most, and immediately all the cable stations went into a full-court press about this unbelievable outcome. That horror of all horrors, Nancy Grace must have pulled out every hair on her head. Her “reports” which I assiduously avoided as best I could, fairly boiled over with venom and snarling accusation. No doubt she is busy screaming travesty in her shower this morning.

What didn’t surprise me were the hoards outside the courtroom and in various locations where cable TV was running (Applebee’s anybody?), and their reaction. Unspeakable moans, tears, and all manner of fist shaking was seen. How could this have happened?

And while I expected this reaction, part of me shook my head in wonder. What is wrong with these people? How do ordinary? people become invested in these cases when they have no personal involvement with any of the participants? I’m told people planned vacations around this event, and traveled hundreds of miles to be in on the trial theatrics.

Are these people just nuts? Do they not have lives? Are they sick? I sat there, sanctimoniously I might add. I am a lawyer by training and I would not hazard an opinion on this one. But that was because I rather intentionally avoided watching it. I realized that some of these poor souls had in fact watched every blessed moment, and they felt entitled to an opinion.

I then recalled an embarrassing truth. I had watched a fair amount of the OJ trial. I surely had an opinion, and to this day, am quite certain of his guilt. So am I any different? I have to wonder.

So my arrogance was deflated.

Questions arise. Do we infuse these cases with something they are not? Are these exceptional cases? Or only media induced high-profile circuses? Does the wild attention given them contribute to incorrect findings? Does everyone perform to the intrusive camera? Does this change the entire dynamic of a trial?

I suspect there are plenty of psychologists asking those very questions and formulating experimental models to test those hypotheses that seem reasonable.

So what do you think?

I must say, that as more media attention comes Michele “Crazy” Bachmann’s way, I get happier. She has a trail of anti-gay wackoness that is stunningly sick. She claims that her own half-sister who is gay leads a “sad life” and is in the hands of Satan. That will get you so far down the road with the rational American public.

Her hubby is even worse if that is possible. His “Christian” therapy center is widely understood to try to de-gay folks, and it’s entirely possible that he has received Medicaid monies to do so.

When you add it all up, the queen of the Teanuts will be destroyed in a general election, but she might be like a certain little girl who wandered into a house and found one bed “just right”. If the wackonuts continue to control the GOP, she could be “just right” with them.

 Climate change is the culprit! I know there are deniers out there, but Australian scientists think that the demise of the giant wombat was caused by climate changes, and not from over-hunting. The mega-marsupial, about the size of a four-wheel drive car, was a plant eater, so don’t get your knickers in a twist if you are headed to Aussieland for a vacation.

Still and all, if you wander around Queensland, be sure to keep an eye out for more skeletons of this humongous creature, that passed out of existence some 50,000 years ago.

Cutie doncha think?

I think the GOP is in big trouble. Their boy the budget czar, Ryan, is about the third most hated Rethuglian in the country only behind Newt and Sarah. Everybody, except the extremely crazy are running from him as fast as they can. They are sort of getting the idea that Merika wants nothing to do with Medicare or Medicaid tinkering.

Saner heads, if there really are any, are sickened by what has happened to the once proud party of Lincoln. I can’t say that I agree often with David Brooks, the conservative columnist, but I have to say I do agree with his assessment of things in his latest op-ed in the NYTimes, The Mother of All No-Brainers.

Basically, Brooks argues that the GOP may well squander the best of all opportunities, in the name of rabid ideological protest. In other words, let the country go down the drain if it means we can eradicate that awful “otherness” that inhabits the White House.

Brooks is spot on here. His words are the harshest I’ve read from a conservative, while Bachmann, in Iowa on the 4th, taunted her Teanut fans that they were being likened to hillbillies by the Democrats. Brooks might argue that the Teanuts are far far below the intellectual level of your average hillbilly. Read the editorial, and you may well agree that the GOP has stepped in its own elephant poo.