Morning Links

Friday, September 16th, 2011

Digg it |  reddit | |  Fark

77 Responses to “Morning Links”

  1. #1 |  Eric Northman | 

    On the bike thing, I woulda just pulled over, taken the ticket, and moved on. Then you can protest the ticket later. Unfortunately, from reading this blog regularly, I think it’s never a good idea to get into an argument with a cop. In fact, as many readers have said, the less you say to a cop, the better. Never argue your case on the street. With all that said, it is pretty bizarre that the cop’s solution in this case was to actually try to run the cyclists off the road.

  2. #2 |  Russ 2000 | 

    And the bicyclists also get money…

    Hopefully the cops learned a bit about bike laws.

    Yeah, but it’s taxpayer money.

    This is where I think people get pissed off. We’ll never get it, but we’ll never be satisfied until police wrong-doing is a criminal offense rather than a civil offense. It’s ridiculous that the cyclists, who harmed no one, faced criminal charges while the officer who DID harm someone only faced civil charges.

    Society keeps ramping up mistakes in judgment by the citizenry into criminal offenses; back when they were civil offenses the citizens and the police were “even”. Now it’s blatantly uneven and tilted in the favor of police. We either need to knock these cases against the citizenry back to civil offense at worst OR jack up the cases against the officers to criminal. I’d even let the police choose.

  3. #3 |  Steve Verdon | 

    I think it is safe to say that Alyssa Rosenberg went full retard on that one.

  4. #4 |  c andrew | 


    I used to ride a bike 12 miles to work and back so I’m fairly careful as a driver around cyclists.

    However I’ve had to “interactions” with cyclists that indicate there are some real idiots out there.

    In one case, I’m on “freight row” which is a street that has no street lights. I’m about to pull through the intersection when I see *something* occlude hotel lights that are about a mile away. I brake suddenly and then I see a bicyclist come into the corona of my headlights. He’s riding a bike, without reflectors, and is wearing navy blue or black clothing at 4:00 am. And he starts screaming at me to “watch where the F**K you’re driving.” I tell him to shut the f**k up and if he wants, we can call a cop and see who he thinks is the problem.

    The other is where I’m approaching a green light that has been in my favor for about 15 seconds. I notice movement out of the corner of my eye; the cross street approaches at an acute angle instead at 90 degrees and this cyclist blows through the intersection. I have to lock the brakes up and almost get rear-ended by the car behind me. The cyclist? Well, he gives me the middle finger as he blows through the intersection against the light.

    So I never assume, in car vs bike, that the driver is automatically at fault. Sometimes the cyclist rolled the dice one too many times and lost.

  5. #5 |  Rojo | 

    “And you thought Phoenix was hot.”

    Actually, the planet in question is thought by astronomers to be very, very cold. “The world known as Kepler-16b is a huge, gaseous planet, about the size of Saturn, and its temperature is at least 100°F below zero,” according to Time.

    Can we stop conflating all “lefties” with progressives? Especially the douchebag progressives of ThinkProgress. This lefty (libertarian) who was utterly disgusted with Kelo will thank you.

    Also, can we stop conflating all bicyclists with the douchebags that don’t reasonably abide by the traffic codes. Some woman in an SUV almost ran me over in a crosswalk the other day when the little walking dude was telling me I could walk, yapping on her cell phone, no less. Yet I don’t go around saying saying stupid stuff like: “Motorists are assholes… I hope more cops start putting them in their place.”

    Finally, even if those two bicyclists were douchegags that didn’t abide by the traffic codes, just for the sake of argument, as I don’t think they were, that cop is clearly still an aggressive ass-hat who should be out of a job and perhaps even charged with some crimes.

  6. #6 |  emerson | 

    @#39 They say it’s a dry heat.

  7. #7 |  Rojo | 

    “douchebags,” not “douchegags.” D’oh!

    Also, thought I’d mention that the lady was making a left hand turn through a red light and a cop was up the street, watched the incident, and then looked at me and shrugged. I guess he couldn’t be bothered.

  8. #8 |  Rojo | 

    ….and, amen to this: “Here’s to hoping Lee Cronin isn’t the guy that invents the grey goo that kills us all.”

  9. #9 |  SJE | 

    c andrew: I completely agree. Blowing throw a red light and riding without lights are my pet peeves. Not only very dangerous to themselves, but to others who have to make sudden maneuvers.

    #50 Eric: from the story, the cyclists thought it was just the usual abuse from a d-bag driver and was not a clear directive to pull over.

  10. #10 |  EH | 

    ToddP@50: It’s the officer’s responsibility to maintain a professional demeanor. If he can’t do that then he is a bad cop and should quit in order to preserve the honor of the force.

  11. #11 |  steve | 

    About the Bicyclists, I can understand that a cop doesn’t know every law, but don’t they have computers in their cars now? Can’t they just look up the relevant law.

  12. #12 |  homeboy | 

    I just wanted to add an anecdote or two to the “Cars v. Bicyclists” discussion here. Several years ago I was a lecturer at Arizona State University, and found the town so conveniently laid out that I rarely drove an automobile. I commuted virtually everywhere on my bike, putting in an average of about thirty miles per day. One day I was riding down the road west of campus when some asshole came up alongside of me and began (profanely) ordering me off the road. I told him to fuck off and continued riding until I stopped at the next intersection, where I noticed a Tempe cop sitting in his cruiser, parked and looking over some paperwork at the side of the road. The clown stopped alongside me at the intersection and resumed shouting obscenities at me. He began waving a semi-automatic handgun in the air, screaming that he was going to “put a fucking cap in [my] head” if I didn’t start obeying him. I turned toward the cop and saw him staring at the armed buffoon and I, so I pointed at the weapon and called out, “Hey!” The punk, who apparently had not seen the cop, took one look at him, panicked, and sped through the intersection on a red light.

    Thinking that this little bastard was sure to get his, I was shocked to see that the cop did not stir even the slightest. I pointed up the road and shouted to him, “I can still see him, you can still catch him,” but the cop continued to sit there, idly and impassively. I turned the corner and came to a position apposing him, and asked, “What the Hell is going on?” The cop tersely replied, “Beat it!” and rolled up his window. He remained completely dispassionate and insouciant to what he had just witnessed as he returned his attention to chewing his cud (or, doughnut, as the case may be).

    On another occasion I was hit by an old man in a pickup truck, who glared at me and flipped me off as he drove away. On numerous others I was pelted with garbage, run off the road, pinned to curbs, struck with rocks and sticks, loudly heckled and menaced with horns, and generally abused by motorists in practically every manner conceivable. I still have a scar on my right shoulder from the time a woman pulled out in front of me at point blank range as I was traveling at approx. 30mph on a broad, sunlit street, forcing me to veer behind her and crash into the curb. I must be indestructible, or very close to it, for the good people of Tempe, Phoenix, and Chandler, Arizona, tried their utmost to kill me for several years, and yet somehow I survived.

    Bicyclists are exposed to extreme hazards and discourtesy whenever they take to the roads, regardless of whether they engage in any form of ill behavior or not. The only instances of me ever riding my bike erratically occurred while taking evasive action against being killed by the actions of an errant motorist. I realize there are a number of bikers out there who are real assholes, but that does not really define the problem. The problem ultimately arises from the fact that many people do not wish to respect the people with whom they must share the world (or road), and will take advantage of any and every opportunity to behave as bullies. It does not matter if the corresponding party happens to be a bicyclist, a motorist, or perhaps a customer service person on the other end of a phone line, these folks seem to be on a constant lookout for easy targets to abuse.

  13. #13 |  Windy | 

    “Metal-based life?”
    Here comes the Borg, or will it be the AI in “Terminator”, whichever, this is a BAD, BAD idea.

  14. #14 |  a_random_guy | 

    I agree wholeheartedly with both “c andrew” and “homeboy”. I bicycle to work part of the time, and fortunately have had relatively few problems with motorists.

    As a bicyclist, I expect other bicyclists to obey the traffics laws. Part of the resentment car drivers feel stems from those cyclist who give the rest of a bad name.

    Two examples:

    Where I live, bicycles are *not* allowed on sidewalks, and *not* allowed to use pedestrian crossings (unless you are walking your bike). No, you cannot be a car one second and then suddenly pretend to be a pedestrian, just because the traffic light is red, but the pedestrian signal is green.

    Far more irritating (and scary): The main road near my house has a bicycle lane on each side of the road. I estimate that about 1/3 of bicyclists on this road cannot be bothered to go over to the correct side – they ride the wrong way on this incredibly busy main street. This can get really exciting when two bicyclists meet head-on, with cars whizzing by in the next lane.

  15. #15 |  Boyd Durkin | 

    Cops and bikes: Really important that everyone understand EVERY COP behaves this way when confronted with a citizen that doesn’t immediately cower in fear at their command. EVERY. COP.

    Fuck them all.

  16. #16 |  Boyd Durkin | 

    That Zombie porn bunker is fantastic news. Think about it. I can get food, warmth, and water after the apoky. But damn, I will seriously be missing porn.

    They are doing god’s work.

  17. #17 |  Boyd Durkin | 

    ThinkProgress blogger:
    I’d express concern if Alan Ball was going to make, say, a Bayard Rustin biopic, or Zack Snyder was going to tackle a realistic movie about the Iraq War.

    Hipster make Hulk want to smash!

  18. #18 |  Boyd Durkin | 

    @#62 Homeboy,
    As a cyclist I can attest to similar treatment.

    Kids do the darndest things: One day a fellow cyclist showed up to my house in a brand new 1984 F-150 (we were both 18). Some guy had stopped to “kick his faggot ass” while he was cycling. He ducked a punch and sprinted straight toward the truck and quickly exchanged a junky Schwinn for the redneck’s new truck…which ended up at the bottom of the local rock quarry (I wasn’t there for that part).

    For the drivers here that are anti-bike: you have to question your humanity if you willingly put someone’s life in danger because they cause you to tap your brake or aren’t following rules like you think they should. You might have what it takes to be a cop.

  19. #19 |  mad libertarian guy | 


    Life can ABSOLUTELY be made of metal.

  20. #20 |  supercat | 

    #64 | a_random_guy | “No, you cannot be a car one second and then suddenly pretend to be a pedestrian, just because the traffic light is red, but the pedestrian signal is green.”

    Is there anything improper about a cyclist dismounting and walking his bicycle across a road to take advantage of a green pedestrian signal? I fully recognize that riding across would not be kosher, but would regard as a pedestrian a person who has dismounted and is walking with his bicycle.

  21. #21 |  CharlesWT | 

    If a cyclist has a clear view and traffic is light, it can be safer for all concerned, but not legal or politic, to do a rolling stop through an intersection rather than come to a complete stop.

  22. #22 |  c andrew | 


    The Left is gone section of the pdf you referred us to reminds me of a story my sister, who works in a rehab center for stroke victims, related to us.

    They had to take the phone out of one patient’s room at night because she was suffering from left-side dissociation and would call the police every night because “someone was in bed with her.” The person who was in bed with her was, of course, her dissociated left side and she could not wrap her mind around the fact that it was in fact herself that was in bed with her.

  23. #23 |  John Q. Galt | 


    I lulzed.

  24. #24 |  John Q. Galt | 

    And yeah, the joke usually uses “sex” for the twist. It’s the adult swim version of the Three Rs grade skool word play.

  25. #25 |  Stick | 

    When I was 14 my fantasies were usually about pretty girls taking their clothes off and inviting me to have my way with them. Now I’m 51 and I fantasise about there being a whole lot less police in the world. Funny how time changes your priorities.

  26. #26 |  Medicine Man | 

    Wow, I think the only thing missing from that bicycle/cop story is the cop going full Cartman and screaming at the cyclist to “respect his authoritah”.

  27. #27 |  John C. Randolph | 

    I think it is safe to say that Alyssa Rosenberg went full retard on that one.