Blizzard Links

Saturday, February 6th, 2010

So I am quite literally snowed in right now. Front door won’t open. It’s been crazy. Photos and videos of puppy snow frolicking forthcoming.

In the meantime….

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43 Responses to “Blizzard Links”

  1. #1 |  Helmut O' Hooligan | 

    RE: Bozeman PD story…

    Good for Ofc. Ziegler!

    Here is an officer who understands that “law breakers” are not, in most cases, evil and beyond help. More importantly, Ofc. Ziegler provides a good example to other officers that you should be a good-hearted person first, and a police officer second.

    This is a solid example of community-oriented policing. Of course, I don’t mean to suggest that all officers should be expected to buy people food (though it should be noted, that during the early 20th century some police departments provided lodging to more people than they arrested, so re-visiting these service-oriented tasks might be a good idea). They should, however, keep in mind that they need to act as the community’s partner, not merely as an enforcer or crime fighter. A well-rounded LEO should be aware of the many problems (criminal and non-criminal) that plauge their communities. They should then be prepared to do what they can to lessen the impact of these problems on the citizens they serve.

  2. #2 |  Bob | 

    Well sure, because doodling on your desk is a gateway activity to using a Quija board, which as we all know… places the souls of young Christians at risk.

    I am, however, wondering why ‘Christians’ would be at particular risk of said soul-attacking. I would think Christian nuts would think THEIR kids are somehow protected, and it’s the children of other religions (because they’re clearly confused), or even…. gasp! Atheists! would be more at risk from the evil influences of the forces of the supernatural.

    Perhaps that’s what caused the Snowocalypse. Kids messing around with the occult.

  3. #3 |  Chuchundra | 

    Don’t fuck around with that Ouija board, Radley. Didn’t you see Paranormal Activity?

  4. #4 |  Aresen | 

    The principal of that school was definitely an ass. Not even a colt, and truly not a saint.

    OTOH, I did learn something from the story: Who is playing in the Stuporbowl.
    Up to this point, I had managed to ignore the whole damn thing.

  5. #5 |  InMD | 

    Regarding the flavored tobacco products I’ve always found the attacks on that kind of stuff as “targeting children” to be preposterous. For one thing it isn’t even legal for tobacco companies to advertise. There mere fact that the stuff exists and tastes good (I assume, I don’t dip) does not mean it is being targeted at kids and even if it is as long as clerks follow the rules about only selling to legal adults then it shouldn’t matter anyway.

    There was some similar nonsense in Maryland awhile back about so-called “alcopops” (which I believe refers to Mike’s Hard Lemonade and other girlie alcoholic beverages). I believe the Maryland legislature didn’t end up restricting them which resulted in predictable accusations from the Washington Post that everyone is in the pocket of the almighty liquor lobby.

    Whipped up hysteria over crime and emotional pleas to protect the children are the twin spurs of the nanny state.

  6. #6 |  Chuchundra | 

    InMD, you’re being naive if you think that tobacco companies aren’t spending loads of time, money and brainpower trying to figure out how to market and sell their death leaf to the next generation. Cigarettes, quite frankly, are on the way out here in the USA (and so are the people who smoke them), so if Phillip Morris (now Altria) and the rest of Big Tobacco want to survive, they’re going to have to develop an alternative, nicotine delivery system and subtle, under-the-table methods of marketing it.

    Candy-flavored tobacco powder sold in brightly-colored packages? Yes, I can’t imagine why anyone would think that’s being developed with the idea that children might buy it.

  7. #7 |  burt hoovis | 

    Balko – I can’t believe you still send your money to the ACLU.

    I got sick of holding my nose and donating to those guys years ago. In addition to completely ignoring the second amendment, they obviously believe that Affirmative Action should trump the remainder of the Bill of Rights. All the good work they do on 1st and 4th Amendment issues can’t somehow undo that.

    These days I send the money I used to give to the ACLU to Gun Owners of America, the Institute of Justice and the Electronic Frontier Foundation. At least I feel like I can trust most of those guys.


  8. #8 |  InMD | 


    And if gas station or convenience store clerks sell it to people under 18 then they should suffer the legal consequences of that action. Outside of the movie “Clerks” I don’t think there are many places selling tobacco products to children young enough to be tempted by candy.

  9. #9 |  Enyap | 

    Burt, are you talking about the same Gun Owners of America that praised Joe Arpaio and called him an upholder of the constitution.

    The GOA are as much right wing whores, as the ACLU are to the left.

  10. #10 |  Matt D | 

    Well, you know, it’s possible that tobacco companies are evil fuckers and this particular instance of evil fuckerness isn’t really amenable to regulation.

  11. #11 |  B | 

    I have to agree with the Foxnews story. Teaching children to consult invisible spirits for guidance via arcane rituals is a very bad idea!

    Now if you’ll excuse me, I have to go get on my knees, recite some magic words out of an old book, and eat the flesh of my savior.

  12. #12 |  Helmut O' Hooligan | 

    #11 B-

    +1 for giving me a good laugh even though I’m working. Excellent work!

  13. #13 |  M Blaze Miskulin | 

    From the tobacco article:

    “…could be particularly appealing to kids and young adults. ”

    A) “could be appealing to”. Anything “could be appealing to” anyone. Once again, moral dyslexia confuses “causal” and “casual” relationships.

    B) “Young adults”. Ummm… if they’re adults, they (supposedly) have the moral and legal authority to make their own decisions without Big Nanny interfering.

  14. #14 |  Cynical in CA | 

    “Gun-free snowball fights. Novel idea!”

    Sometimes some simple lese majeste is the best, er, only remedy.

  15. #15 |  Cynical in CA | 

    “Twelve-year-old Queens girl hauled out of school in handcuffs for writing on desk.”

    Fuck, I wish that happened to me. I remember being so fucking bored in school, being taken on a little field trip with the bracelets on would have been a nice break from the boredom.

    What I mean is, with compulsory attendance laws, school is little more than a prison anyway. Looks like a bit of the thin veneer of civilization wore off in Queens.

  16. #16 |  John Jenkins | 

    When I was a kid, I remember carving my initials into a desk with a pocket knife. The school was located on a military base and, since mine were clearly not the first initials carved into that desk, I don’t remember anything happening other than the teacher bitching at me for not paying attention.

    They’d probably suspend me for a year, just for having the knife, these days.

  17. #17 |  Dave Krueger | 

    Because anything that tastes good is obviously an appeal to children.

    Which is why, in today’s U.S., a lot of shit that’s legal now probably wouldn’t be legal if it were invented today, because, as we all know, everything that exists, whether physical or intangible, is first and foremost the property of the government and whether you, as a subject (and one of the physical things they own), are permitted access is entirely at their discretion.

  18. #18 |  Highway | 

    Good luck getting out of the house, Radley. I’m snowed in, but my wife has it worse: Snowed in at work, so she’s shanghaied for the weekend.

  19. #19 |  Dave Krueger | 

    Time to renew my ACLU membership.

    Don’t get your panties in a wad. The school probably just happens to be outside an approved free speech zone.

    In any case, even free speech isn’t absolute, you know. For example, as Oliver Wendell Holmes said, “You can’t wear a T-shirt that says FIRE! into a crowded theater”. I could list a few trillion other exceptions to the First Amendment, but it’s almost time for dinner and I know my wife bought ice cream for dessert.

  20. #20 |  Dave Krueger | 

    Twelve-year-old Queens girl hauled out of school in handcuffs for writing on desk.

    Holy smokes. I hope someone from Hollywood or Broadway sees that picture of her.

    Geez. If a kid did the stuff these days that I did when I was a kid, they’d probably issue “shoot to kill” orders.

  21. #21 |  burt hoovis | 

    Yo Enyap…didn’t now about the GOA/Arpaio link.

    Thanks for pointing it out…plan to provide feedback.


  22. #22 |  Stormy Dragon | 

    Front door won’t open

    Wait… your front door opens out? Isn’t that a security hazard?

  23. #23 |  Mattocracy | 

    GOA isn’t perfect. Neither is the ACLU. But I support both where they are right and realize that they’re gonna be wrong sometimes. I’m sure it’s a matter of time before IJ does something I won’t like. I’ll support them when they do.

  24. #24 |  primus | 

    #22 How is a door opening out a security hazard? If someone tried to break it down, they would be pushing it against the doorstop. With a door which opens inward, all they need break is the latch. It’s less secure, not more. In public buildings outward opening doors on exits are mandatory because they can be opened outward as a person runs from the building, more easily than an inward opener, and can’t be rendered unopenable by people pressing against them from inside. Please ‘splain yourself, Lucy.

  25. #25 |  primus | 

    I would make the principal write 10,000 lines; I will not breach the civil rights of my students. I will respect their likes and dislikes. I will treat them like human beings.

  26. #26 |  tariqata | 

    Just exactly who is the dissolved-tobacco-candy aimed at? I’ve got no real sympathy for the tobacco companies, personally, but it doesn’t sound like something that will really catch on.

    Small kids are presumably not going to pay much attention to the tobacco displays in any case, and as InMD pointed out, there are already rules in place for anyone selling tobacco products to them.

    And, really, high school is not so far behind me that I don’t remember all the 14- to 17-year olds bravely hacking as they sucked on their cancer sticks because it was just so cool. Somehow I don’t see candy flavoured dissolved tobacco as a viable replacement for that public display.

  27. #27 |  Frank | 

    Green Police? T’aint funny, Audi, t’aint funny.

  28. #28 |  Stormy Dragon | 

    If someone on the doorstep tries to get in, it’s much easier to stop them from pushing the door open then it is to stop them from pulling the door open.

  29. #29 |  Joe | 

    How’s this for freedom, cops will arrest you in Massachusetts if you video tape the police. Apparently you need consent. Which means all the tourists in Boston in the summer…they can be arrested for video taping.

    How’s them apples?

  30. #30 |  Dave Krueger | 

    #29 Joe

    How’s this for freedom, cops will arrest you in Massachusetts if you video tape the police. Apparently you need consent. Which means all the tourists in Boston in the summer…they can be arrested for video taping.

    How’s them apples?

    I just looked into my crystal ball and can say with some certainty that the number of states that require two-party consent will grow in the coming years.

  31. #31 |  Aresen | 

    Dave, remember that fortune tellers have to be very careful when making love:

    They have crystal balls.

  32. #32 |  billy-jay | 


    Wow. Screw Audi.

  33. #33 |  Tokin42 | 

    #24 & 28 Re: Door debate!

    Main doors open in, storm/screen doors open out.

  34. #34 |  Shell Goddamnit | 

    If someone on the doorstep tries to get in, it’s much easier to stop them from pushing the door open then it is to stop them from pulling the door open.

    I’m not seeing it. If the door opens in, the crowbar goes between the door and the jamb. If the door opens out, the crowbar goes…where?

    If you’re talking about a single person standing outside the door, pulling on the doorknob seems to inherently allow less body mass to be used – they’d be just yanking with their arm instead of pushing with shoulder or kicking with foot.

    Or was this snark & I missed it? Sorry, not familiar with all internet traditions.

    As far as the videotaping: I think that if these laws are proposed folks should agitate for police on the job being specifically excluded from any such law; and anyone who objects to such an exclusion should be asked *exactly why.* Surely public servants are public, at least, even if they’re not servants any more, so the only possible reason is to prevent the production of evidence of malfeasance.

  35. #35 |  Shell Goddamnit | 

    Adding: of course if you have storms or screens the main door perforce must open in, whether it reduces security or not. I don’t understand why more screen doors are not made to double as security doors – and vice versa. My landlady put security doors on my place but failed to put in security doors *with screens* – WTF? Why on earth not add screening??

  36. #36 |  NAB | 

    i fully expected the ouija board link to lead to some obscure christian news organization and was surprised to find myself at the fox news site. i suppose i still need to work on my jadedness.

  37. #37 |  Stormy Dragon | 

    I wasn’t talking about situations where no one is home and someone is trying to break the door down. If they’re willing to break things to get in, they can smash a window far easier than a door, whichever way it opens.

    I’m referring to the situation where the owner is talking to someone on the doorstep who then tries to push in through the unlocked door. It’s much easier in such situations to stop them if the door opens in, where you can simply block it with your full body then if it open out where you have to engage in a tug of war which they start out winning.

  38. #38 |  J sub D | 

    Every child should get a Ouija board to teach them what bullshit paranormalism* is.

    * Is that a word?

  39. #39 |  Shell Goddamnit | 

    Doors: In or Out?

    My preference would be to find out if I wanted to let the person in beforehand, anyway; I am not in the habit of just randomly yanking the door open. Hell, it could be the police.

    Got my door cracked open with a crowbar while I was standing at the top of the stairs once. It made an impression.

  40. #40 |  Tamfang | 

    Bob, I can readily believe that Christians – or rather, people who believe in demons – are more prone to demon possession than, say, atheists; but it is indeed odd to find a Christian saying so. Perhaps what he or she meant was that atheist souls are lost anyway so only the Christian souls are worth fretting about.

  41. #41 |  Zargon | 

    I was under the impression that main doors always opened inwards, because otherwise the hinges would be on the outside, making it trivial to simply remove the door.

    On a meta-commenting note, I find it entertaining that a number of people find the actual links so ordinary as to be passed over for comment in favor of main door design.

  42. #42 |  Toonhead | 

    Is their faith and god so weak that merely playing with an Oujia board will open them up to all kinds of mayhem?

  43. #43 |  Shell Goddamnit | 

    Ah. Hinges. Of course.

    I comment on door design because well it’s not as self-explanatory as the links. I have no question about the links, eh.