The Mark Riley Show Progressive talk radio with a twist

April 30, 2015  

Crowds scatter as Baltimore curfew takes hold. It’s time to take a look at what actually works in trying to curb police violence against unarmed citizens. Violence in the streets isn’t new, yet it hasn’t worked. Peaceful protest has been around for decades, While it worked during the civil rights era, it doesn’t seem to be working any better than violence now.

So what works?

Guest:  Les Payne, Pulitzer prize winning former Newsday editor 

Top Stories

Loretta Lynch is sworn in as Attorney General. She’s got a big issue on her plate. That being federal probes of police killings. How will she handle it? Baltimore may be first on her plate. 

Bernie Sanders to announce presidential bid. Now here’s somebody progressive ought to be able to get behind. Does he pose a threat to Hillary’s left flank? He sure does. Can he win? Only if the people asking the question come out and vote for him.

Justices appear deeply divided over right to gay marriage. Call me an optimist, but I think the court will rule in favor of gay marriage. Too much water has gone under the bridge. It will likely be 5-4. 

Questioning of Garner protestors in New York renews concerns about police practices. Those concerns ought to have been ongoing. The NYPD is violating the law, pure and simple.

A squatter's last stand at a condemned Bronx barn. Garland Roberts, the “squatter”, has been an activist for as long as I can remember. He seems to have a valid beef.

Cash strapped MTA threatens 15% fare hike. What, again? Why are they so cash strapped?

Nigerian army rescues 200 abducted girls, 93 women. About time the army did something! Nevertheless, this is good news, and hopefully it continues.

To the Ridiculous 

Heroic Texas Ag Commissioner will save children from spending a few hours without fried foods. Local control folks, local control. If a school wants to give kids fried foods to children, that’s up to them.

April 23, 2015  
It’s Earth Day!!! How about shrinking your environmental footprint just a little, OK??? 
Top Stories…..
Federal inquiry in Baltimore man’s death after arrest. Six officers have been suspended in the death of Freddie Gray. His spinal cord was severed, and people in Baltimore have taken to the streets as they have in Ferguson, Staten Island, and several other places where apparent police violence have cost black men their lives. Baltimore’s elected moved fairly quickly to release information, and seem top be taking a “let the chips fall where they may” attitude. Now the feds are involved. Let’s see if charges result.
NJ trooper fatally shot suspect in Union as he drove toward officer, authorities say. Operative words: authorities say. There is at times a reflexive validation of police conduct in these types of cases. However, it seems that public outrage over police killings may be reaching critical mass. Or is this just me?
At Supreme Court, Eric Holder’s Justice Dept. routinely officer’s use of force. This may come as a surprise to some, given Holder’s public statements about policing, but numbers don’t lie. And BTW, don’t expect much different from Loretta Lynch.
….And lest anyone say we focus on police shootings to the exclusion of “black on black” crime…..
Paterson slaying suspect was once a promising athlete, too. Two standout athletes, one dead, one accused. One was 15, the victim, and the accused is 20. What a waste!
Supreme Court limits drug sniffing dog use in traffic stops. That’s limits, not eliminates. This one is about how long a person can be detained until a dog is produced. Still, a victory for civil liberties.
Lead Story…..
Senate deal on sex trafficking clears way for Lynch vote. How did the Senate get to this place, where culture issues stalled a vote on a nominee for Attorney general?
Guest: Chris Frates, reporter, CNN
Police union boss says flooding NYPD cadets with obvious info makes their job harder. This is the head of the Captain’s Endowment Assn., not the PBA. The obvious info? Don’t be a racist, don’t make sexist jokes, you know, stuff like that. The real question is whether or not it’s needed and the answer to that appears to be yes. 
City eyes cabbies’  hours in bid to solve rush hour crunch. This has been a problem forever, so it’s nice to see them taking a look.  And they even included cabbies in their deliberations.
Police report capture of coyote following Norwood attack. That’s Norwood, NJ, folks. And they’ve got similar coyote problems in Manhattan as well. What’s going on here?
To the Ridiculous
No one liked my White History Month celebration, please send bigot bucks now. This story, courtesy of the Wonkette, reaffirms my faith in the good people of the Garden State. It just goes to show, grime doesn’t pay. 
April 16, 2015  

Top Stories

Hillary Clinton starts to detail rationale for run as campaign begins. Of course, while she may be working on explaining why she’s running, her aides are plotting revenge against NYC Mayor Bill de Blasio, who pointedly refused to endorse her on Meet the Press this past weekend. Is there someone else I’ve missed, or is she the lone declared Democratic candidate?

Ex-Blackwater guards given long terms for killing Iraqis. And at their sentencing, they seemed unrepentant, saying sorry, but the loss of innocent Iraqi lives couldn’t be helped. Next question is, will the US ever do business with companies like this again? Or are we? 

Black Lives Matter protest takes the Brooklyn Bridge. At least a dozen people were arrested. Traffic was stopped at several intersections for “die-ins” protesting police brutality. It was the first major protest since two NYPD officers were murdered. Is the fact that non black people are participating in protests mean anything significant? 

East New York residents demand NYPD reforms. In that part of Brooklyn, it’s simple. Police Park Place like you do Park Ave. Is that possible? If not, why not? 

Lead Story: After years of declining real wages in New York since the Great Recession, things may finally start to be looking up. Also, can the city find healthcare savings to pay for union wage hikes? 

Guest: James Parrott, Deputy Director, Chief Economist, Fiscal Policy Institute 

Top Stories cont’d

Ron Kuby to cops: Give the artists back their Snowden bust, please.

Guest: Ron Kuby, activist attorney, radio host 

$15 minimum wage would benefit everyone, except corporate overlords. The trick here is this. Why do so many people think the city would fall apart with a $15 minimum wage? And why do people think companies will simply cease to operate? 

9 ex-educators get jail time in Atlanta cheating scandal. Who exactly did these people think they were helping, kids? Their parents should sue the system for malpractice. After all, their kids were the ones being undereducated.

Obama allows Congress a say on Iran accord. How much of a say? He didn’t say. Desire to have congressional input was bi-partisan. Hope they don’t render it moot. 

Cuba to be removed from US list of nations that sponsor terrorism. About time. Cuba never, ever posed a terror threat to the US. Better to look at ex-senator Bob Graham’s efforts to track Saudi complicity in 9/11 attacks. 

To the Ridiculous

Iowa lotto employee rigged $14.3 million dollar win for himself on ticket. And this guy was the security director. Anyone wanna buy a lotto ticket?

April 9, 2015  

Top Stories 

South Carolina officer charged with murder in man’s death. This one’s on video for all to see. And in this case, the judicial system acted swiftly in arresting and charging the cop. So many questions….why shoot the man 8 times in the back? Why did system in North Charleston work so differently than on Staten Island and in Ferguson? 

Israel lists changes it wants in final Iran nuclear deal. So, after all this time claiming no deal was better than this one, they want right of first refusal on changes? Wonder how Euro countries will react to this. 

Boston Marathon bombing trial wraps up with clashing portraits of naiveté and extremism. Assuming the kid is convicted, the real question is whether he should get the death penalty or not. Should he??? 

Emanuel wins 2nd term as Chicago mayor in runoff. It wasn’t close, 56-44, but it does give progressive residents of the Windy City something to build on, maybe. In Ferguson, two blacks were elected to the City Council, bringing the number to three. Interestingly, candidates backed by protestors lost. What does this tell us? 

Barneys says they did not violate civil rights of shopper who claims he was victim of racial profiling. They say just because they called the cops on the guy who bought a $300 belt doesn’t mean they did anything wrong? Something to keep in mind the next time you go shopping.

Lead Story….

WFP founder slams de Blasio, City Hall for lack of contracts for minority businesses.

Guest: (6:30) Bertha Lewis, Founder and President, the Black Institute, Founder, Working Families Party.

Fraternity to go after Rolling Stone for rape article. Just goes to show….be careful how you report a story. At the very least, it’s going to cost Roll Stone attorney fees.

Anemic report on California water conservation adds to crisis. We told you about this California drought last summer. Seems things aren’t getting any better.

Illicit Edward Snowden statue replaced by illicit Edward Snowden hologram. I always thought there should be a statue of Snowden somewhere. As much as he was vilified by some, he opened a window on government spying that can’t be closed.

Rand Paul taking an untested route to the Republican nomination. He’s going populist, and seeking to appeal to minority and young voters. Can he pull it off? Probably not.

To the Ridiculous

TSA pocketed $60K in forgotten change at LGA and JFK last year. How hard did they try to get the money back to those who forgot it? If $60k was reported, how much wasn’t?


April 2, 2015  


Prof. Arthur Leonard, Professor of Law, NY Law School
Andrew Rosario, sports reporter, Arise TV

Top Stories


Daily News said to get bids from Cablevision and billionaire grocer. What, Zuckerman wants out? What would Dolan do with NYDN. Isn’t Newsday enough?


Furious Bratton sounds off at City Hall for cop funding. Perhaps people would be more inclined to support more cops if the bad apples act so entitled. See next story.


Civilian Complaint Review Board takes leading role in investigation into NYPD detective’s xenophobic rant at Uber driver. He should be fired for being dumb enough to think there’s way it would be taped, which is was.


Report: NYPD watchdogs only probed 7 our of 150 complaints. And you want more cops? Not done yet…..


NYPD accused of giving points to Staten Island cops for making arrests to hit quota. Take all these stories together. Am I missing something, or does something need to be done?


Lead Story…..


Religious bills upset capitols in Arkansas and Indiana. Both states are now scrambling to explain and amend laws they allowed to become law. Is this because of public outrage, or because business communities in both states got upset. It’s an important distinction.


It’s a done deal. State pols adopt New York’s $150 billion dollar budget after Assembly drags past deadline. Devil is in the details, folks. Who is happy, who isn‘t? One thing’s for sure. There’s talk of cracking down on corruption. Not gonna happen!


Republican hopefuls pocketed hundreds of millions in Obamacare funding, while working to repeal it. Just another hypocritical contradiction for GOP to explain away.


Phil Jackson’s plan for Knicks is hard sell. What’s surprising is that Jackson would feed the NY media a taped laughline for a sports cycle and a half. And that’s just about the music!  


To the Ridiculous…


Nevada’s Bunny Ranch brothel seeking paid “quality “ control testors. Where do I sign up?


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