Morning Links

Thursday, August 18th, 2011
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43 Responses to “Morning Links”

  1. #1 |  Dave Krueger | 

    Another DNA exoneration looming in Texas.

    It seems perfectly reasonable for a prosecutor to assume that the child’s statement that the father didn’t do it is not exculpatory. I mean, “He didn’t do it” leaves a lot of room for interpretation and requires professional judgment before you can call it, you know, exculpatory.

    For another example, a lot of people think that the Fourth Amendment prohibits searches without a warrant and that the First Amendment prohibits censorship, but that’s just because public just isn’t equipped with the intellectual tools required to correctly extract the real meaning of these things.

    That’s why we have government.

  2. #2 |  Cyto | 

    What is the story with all of these prosecutors fighting tooth and nail to prevent evidence of innocence from coming to light. They often aren’t even the same prosecutor that originally handled the case, but time after time they hide evidence and fight in court to keep it from coming to light. Why are they so consumed with maintaining convictions, even at the expense of justice?

    This guy was probably still in school 24 years ago when the case was originally handled. Why so vested in keeping an innocent man in jail? Is it part of the soul-removing process involved in minting a new JD, or is there a deeper psychological force at work. It must be the latter, because it is the extremely rare exception that a prosecutor works to see justice done when confronted with evidence of innocence.

  3. #3 |  Matt F. | 

    Regarding the infographic on crime rates and prison population:

    I can just hear some Indiana bureaucrat babbling, “Well, hell, that means if we just raise the prison population %564, we’ll have almost no crime!”

  4. #4 |  Robert | 

    Indiana hosts a lot of out of state inmates in their prisons. New York does not allow holding out of state prisoners in theirs. I wonder if this study takes that into account.

    Also, I’d trust New Yorks crime reporting numbers about as far as I could throw them.

  5. #5 |  OrangeYouGlad | 

    “The name of your new band: Anarchist Dog Walking Collective.”

    I call Dibs!

  6. #6 |  Veeshir | 

    the immigrant-bashing candidate.
    Don’t get me wrong, I don’t like Bachman, I don’t think she has a chance in hell of getting the nomination, nor do I want her to get the nomination but…..

    It always makes me wonder why people leave out the “illegal” part when linking to a story about someone saying they’re against illegal immigration.

    I mean, being against illegal immigration (those who break our laws) isn’t being against legal immigration (those who follow them).

    Eh, sometimes partisanship makes you do silly things I guess.

  7. #7 |  Stephen | 

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/%E2%80%94We_Also_Walk_Dogs

    Robert A Heinlein got there first. :)

  8. #8 |  Dave Krueger | 

    #5 Veeshir

    It always makes me wonder why people leave out the “illegal” part when linking to a story about someone saying they’re against illegal immigration.

    My favorite is when they say “undocumented worker” (an NPR favorite). It sounds like a simple clerical error. You know, like they left their driver’s license at home or just took a wrong turn. It’s so much better than “illegal alien” which implies things like, you know, tunneling under the border or being smuggled in by truck (or landing in a space ship).

  9. #9 |  Boyd Durkin | 

    A meeting of anarchists, progressives, a self-described “surly feminist” and others on the far left of the political spectrum is underway.

    Now we’re* on the left.

    *I’m a surly feminist.

  10. #10 |  Irving Washington | 

    For background on the exoneration story, Williamson County is a beautiful place north of Austin. The county seat is Georgetown, which is home to Southwestern University, an excellent liberal arts school. The county is known for its luxury retirement communities. And for reasons I really can’t explain, county government and especially the justice system are vile, corrupt, and retrograde.

  11. #11 |  Mattocracy | 

    I’m also opposed to illegal immigration. Which why I think it should be legel for people to immigrate anywhere without being hendered by a stupid quota system.

  12. #12 |  Boyd Durkin | 

    The Tarantino couch should start off as an incredibly sexy-in-its-simplicity sofa that over time grows fake tits and blasts a soundtrack of 70s music before finally collapsing under the combined weight of Erik Estrada, Stevie Nix, and a gritty tattooed actor who barely speaks English. All of this will take 10x longer than it should.

    Then it should explode in a fire ball in the background while Megan Fox slowly walks toward the camera. No wait, that’s the Michael Bay.

    The M. Night sofa, of course, twists into a convertible bed. And it is the crappiest bed in the world.

  13. #13 |  Boyd Durkin | 

    it should be legel for people to immigrate anywhere without being hendered by a stupid quota system.

    I hate being hendered. Controlling immigration is a problem with socialism…that thing that loooooves everyone and cares about the children so much.

  14. #14 |  Boyd Durkin | 

    Williamson County is a beautiful place north of Austin. The county seat is Georgetown

    Used to dive at Blue Hole in G-town. It sure is a beautiful place and they have never held their police force accountable (decades worth of stories would reach the Austin paper). In fact, they support the abusers since they seem to all belong to the same clubs.

  15. #15 |  Mattocracy | 

    *Hindered*

    Sorry about that.

  16. #16 |  Yizmo Gizmo | 

    Indiana wants me, Lord I can’t go back there Indiana wants me, Lord I can’t go back there I …

    I think this musician was ahead of the curve in 1970.
    Firs the 4th Amendment desecration, now this. That place is starting to creep me out.

  17. #17 |  Helmut O' Hooligan | 

    RE: Anarchist dog-walking collective…
    “he would always take time to describe the collective’s mission, how it was employee-owned and their generous benefits, he said”

    I may snipe at “anarchists” from time to time on this blog, but I think these guys have a good thing going. This is voluntary socialism, which I endorse wholeheartedly.

    So, if you don’t like corporate retail entities, join together with like-minded people and form an employee-owned business like this. If you don’t like huge banks, especially those living off the taxpayers’ teat, join a credit union (I did!), which is a member-owned financial cooperative. Pissed off at the cops, then develop a private protection program (which could be employee-owned, a traditional partnership, owned by a sole proprieter if the person offers their services independently) and offer your services to neighborhood groups, small businesses, etc. I mean, if lefty anarchists want people to take them seriously, they will have to have alternatives to government policing and many other services currently provided by the state.

    I encourage people to seek alternatives to the state, as well as alternatives to the huge conglomerates that survive, at least in part, because of aid provided to them by the state. In that sense, I stand in solidarity with these radicals, no matter what label they apply to themselves.

  18. #18 |  B | 

    Re NY vs. Indiana–Confirmation bias dictates that I believe this. But wouldn’t you really need to make some sort of comparison among a lot of states (or better, all of them) using the same metrics over the same period of time to draw any firm conclusions about whether and how incarceration rates affect crime rates?

  19. #19 |  Meister574 | 

    I guess there are now only 6 band names left.

    http://www.theonion.com/articles/report-only-7-band-names-remaining,5697/

  20. #20 |  Ted S. | 

    Why that whole Brando couch story was presented as one giant photo is beyond me.

    Unless the people who design websites that way like annoying people.

  21. #21 |  SJE | 

    The “police broke my door” article is written by a white, NASA scientist and father, who is mystified that he gets treated this way and only gets resolution when he complains directly to the Chief of Police. She is unpopular with the rank and file in part because she clamps down on the sort of BS that is too common in many PDs. She should be praised by cops, because as soon as the bulk of the population realize that this sort of thing doesnt just happen to poor black people, the sh*t will hit the fan and the police will have a much more onerous job.

  22. #22 |  Yizmo Gizmo | 

    “The “police broke my door” article is written by a white, NASA scientist and father, who is mystified that he gets treated this way and only gets resolution when he complains directly to the Chief of Police.”

    Reminds me of the time I got detained in FLA just walking down the street.
    The cops were using this unsolved crime as a ruse to shake people down
    and take their shit and run everybody’s background check. Unfortunately one of the things they lost was my passport, then lied about it and I found a clear paper trail showing what they did. (Happy dance)
    The fact that I was a gov’t employee didn’t help their case either, especially when I informed them they created National Security breach
    and I was going straight to the State Department/FBI.
    Boy, you never saw a bunch of people with badges go from authoritarian
    to humble so fast…

  23. #23 |  Mike | 

    “Indiana vs. New York.” nahhh, my sister left NY for Indiana.

  24. #24 |  Robert | 

    When I read the list of bands coming to Moogfest here in Asheville this Halloween, I said “And I thought *my* bands name sucked!”

  25. #25 |  Cappy | 

    The dog walking collective – In other words they’re anarcho-capitalists, which to me is the only true form of anarchism and one which I try to follow in conjunction with the NAP.

  26. #26 |  JS | 

    Yizmo “Boy, you never saw a bunch of people with badges go from authoritarian
    to humble so fast…”

    I would have paid to see that!

  27. #27 |  buzz | 

    “Michelle Bachman announces her plans to become the immigrant-bashing candidate. No GOP primary would be complete without one.”

    The article pretty much says the default position should be open boarders and that there is “the bogus distinction between illegal and legal immigration” This bogus distinction is held by pretty much every country in the world. How being against illegal immigration, a mainstream position, becomes immigrant bashing deserves more explanation.

  28. #28 |  Justthisguy | 

    Bachman is presumably descended from that wave of Germans who came over here after the failure of the 1848 revolutions, the busybodies who gave us the Republican Party in its original centralizing, nationalizing form.

    As somebody who is entirely descended (with the exception of a greatgrandmother who came over from England in a (spit!) STEAMSHIP!) from British Protestants who were here before the Revolution, I think that 1924 immigration law was about 100 years too late.

  29. #29 |  Justthisguy | 

    P.s. That’s assuming that’s her maiden name, of course, which it probably isn’t.

  30. #30 |  JOR | 

    “It always makes me wonder why people leave out the “illegal” part when linking to a story about someone saying they’re against illegal immigration.”

    Because if someone’s real problem was with the illegality of the immigration, the simplest solution would be to legalize it with full retro-active amnesty. No law to be broken in the first place: problem solved. In fact, they almost always object very strongly to this, which implies that they’re in favor of the illegality of the immigration in question, as a means to some other end (e.g. keeping out funny talking brown people). That’s an argument that needs to be played from where it lies, instead of Divine Command-like appeals to the laws of men.

  31. #31 |  Marty | 

    well said, JOR. I challenge anyone to try to navigate their way through our bureaucratic immigration laws posing as a 20 year old Mexican guy- you cannot do it.

  32. #32 |  Justthisguy | 

    I’m against both the legal and the illegal kind. The country was already full, over a hundred years ago.

  33. #33 |  JOR | 

    “How being against illegal immigration, a mainstream position, becomes immigrant bashing deserves more explanation.”

    Well, people around here would describe plenty of mainstream positions as “bashing” someone or other or based on bogus or morally or practically irrelevant distinctions, or otherwise bigoted or evil. For instance, the War on Drugs bashes illegal drug users and sellers (all too often, quite literally). I wonder how many people around here would even take a drug war equivalent to the tacky and stupid “well sure we should ease up on legal immigration requirements, but as long as we have these laws we should enforce them ruthlessly” line that defines the boundaries of Patriotically Correct mainstream opinion. But as soon as it comes to immigration, suddenly the law in and of itself is sacred even for people who otherwise know better.

  34. #34 |  Goober | 

    They informed us that they have to follow the decision of the MPD, which said the claim should not be paid. When we contacted our District MPD, they said it was for the ORM to decide—though the police have their own ORM which the city’s ORM accused of stonewalling.

    Ahhh, that wonderful feature of bureaucracy – no one has to do anything and they all get to blame the inaction on each other. Just further reinforing my previous posts that the inefficiency, stupidity, and seeming incomprehenisble responisbility matrices in bureaucracy are a feature, not a bug. I’m just glad that unlike most cases, these folks were able to find a “buck stops here” sort in the mess who was able to fix it for them.

    i spent 5 weeks earlier this summer trying to get a building permit for a simple cover over my patio, suring which every department blamed delays in issuance on the other department in a maddening round-robin that was designed to eliminate accountability, and allow every person in that organization to only work on things and on days that they felt like working on.

  35. #35 |  Nipplemancer | 

    Holy shit! 2 of the 3 West Memphis Three are reportedly going to take a plea and get out of jail.
    http://www.wreg.com/news/wreg-west-memphis-3-freed,0,5347577.story

  36. #36 |  croaker | 

    This guy in Texas is due for a large chunk of change. 24 x $80K.

    Which will be eaten up by legal fees, court costs, and “reimbursement” to the state penal system for his 24 year involuntary vacation.

    Leaving him five bucks for a cup of bad Starbucks coffee…

  37. #37 |  Veeshir | 

    Because if someone’s real problem was with the illegality of the immigration, the simplest solution would be to legalize it with full retro-active amnesty.

    Okay, that made me laugh.

  38. #38 |  c andrew | 

    @ #36 croaker said,

    Leaving him five bucks for a cup of bad Starbucks coffee…

    IRS Agent – “Excuse me, but I think you’re forgetting the small issue of all the back taxes you owe for your windfall of income…”

  39. #39 |  Bill P. | 

    On the matter of immigrants … I’m wondering if you can explain to me why we should allow any at all? I’m aware that many of these people are hard-working & have many fine qualities. I live in an area of suburban New Jersey which is as polyglot an area as you can imagine … whites, blacks, hispanic, asians etc. So I can testify to this from my personal experience. However the same is true of many Americans. So there is no reason to allow immigrants into the country because they have these qualities. Excuse my ignorance, but don’t they take jobs away from Americans? With unemployment at maybe 20% (by the older measurement) this is surely an
    important consideration. Of course, labor is a factor of production & all that. But by encouraging an exorbitant expansion here we are just building a latafundia economy based on cheap labor. An economy based on capital
    investment in plant & equipment would instead create jobs for engineers & skilled workers. Certainly we can make an exception for an outstanding scholar or someone else fleeing political oppression (Husserl or Einstein for instance). Fill us in please.

  40. #40 |  Mattocracy | 

    @ Bill P

    Think of it this way. No one is owed a job. It’s something earned either through having skills needed or by being self employed. Immigration quotas are a way of saying that these people don’t get a chance to compete for these jobs, and these other people over here get an advantage to get these jobs. You’re telling employers who they can and can’t hire, a kind of affirmative action based on nationality as opposed to race or gender. It’s on thing to base hiring practices based on education, skills, and competancy, it’s very different to base it on things unrelated to productivity.

    I’m not trying to be combative with this next statement, but this is how the open border people see the anti-immigration movement. Replace “illegal” with “blacks.” These “blacks” are taking our jobs away. Telling a guy he’s out of the running because he was born the other side of a boundary is as superficial as race to us. The open border proponents believe that no one should be flat out denied the chance to compete for a job based on these things.

  41. #41 |  Bill P. | 

    “Immigration quotas are a way of saying that these people don’t get a chance to compete for these jobs, and these other people over here get an advantage to get these jobs …”

    Bingo. That’s what a country is good for. Blacks are a non-issue. They were almost the original Americans. Also you haven’t addressed the problem of an economy based on cheap labor.

  42. #42 |  Mattocracy | 

    The economy adjusts. It’s a fluid thing that will naturally use the resources available in the most efficient ways. It’s not like immigrants are a wrench that you throw into a set of gears. It’s organic and it just responds to effectively use the types of labor that are available.

    And it’s not good for a country to artificially decide who gets to compete for employment.

  43. #43 |  Bill P. | 

    Sure. By driving down wages & eliminating all prospects for Americans in response to the flood of labor & outsourcing: the latafundia economy. Americans are here & foreigners are elsewhere. What is artificial about denying them entry? Just about every other country does the same thing. The banksters are almost unique in wanting to destroy their own country.

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