Morning Links

Monday, March 12th, 2012
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43 Responses to “Morning Links”

  1. #1 |  Jack Dempsey | 

    Radley, the Puppycide story is taking place in Washington State, not Iowa. Des Moines is a small municipality in the greater King/Thurston/Pierce County area.

  2. #2 |  Boyd Durkin | 

    “It shows the tenacity of the detectives on the LAPD who will work tirelessly to bring a case to justice, whether that case takes them around the world or across the hall.”

    Even when they lose, they win. This statement steps on the issue that detectives decades ago didn’t do their job and LAPD employees (cops) covered up for this murderer whenever possible. Instead, cheerleading “The System Works!” yet again.

    Damn.

  3. #3 |  Juice | 

    Kittycide.

    http://www.whsv.com/home/headlines/Police_Kill_Dying_Cat_Resident_Upset__134285278.html

  4. #4 |  Mattocracy | 

    “Minnesota school forced student to reveal her social networking passwords.”

    I’m glad this girl is suing. But what these school admins did was criminal. They should be arrested.

  5. #5 |  Yizmo Gizmo | 

    “It shows the tenacity of the detectives on the LAPD who will work tirelessly to bring a case to justice, whether that case takes them around the world or across the hall.”

    Did anyone notice that the most prolific serial killer ever in Washington
    (Green River) only got about a day of intense coverage, due to the godawful police work on that case? Meanwile Natalee Holloway coverage was 24-7, and it wasn’t even clear she was murdered.

  6. #6 |  BSK | 

    Radley-

    Did you ever get to writing that piece on Cato/Koch?

  7. #7 |  Justin | 

    I would think variable speed limit signs would be prone to the same sort of abuse as red light cameras.

  8. #8 |  Nipplemancer | 

    Yizmo – that’s because Holloway was a pretty white blonde girl which gives the media the vapors. Had she been an ugly (and soulless) ginger, it would’ve only merited a blurb in the local paper.

  9. #9 |  Mannie | 

    Children need to be taught:

    1. Don’t put your life on Facebook

    2. How to set up anonymous accounts.

    3. Never to talk with authorities. “I wish to speak with my parents.” “I wish to speak with my attorney.” “Name Rank and Serial Number.”

  10. #10 |  Bob | 

    #7: Justin

    I would think variable speed limit signs would be prone to the same sort of abuse as red light cameras.

    That’s exactly what I was thinking. It should be obvious that once you have a tool like this in place, for whatever reason it was put there, it will be soon be gamed to serve as a revenue generator.

  11. #11 |  Mario | 

    I worked in middle schools and high schools for a while as a substitute teacher, per diem and a couple of long-term leave replacements, and I just have to ask: what the hell is wrong with some adults? A 12-year-old writes on her Facebook wall that she “hates” you because you’re “mean.” Who in his right mind could even give a shit? Get a life!

  12. #12 |  Roho | 

    Similarly, the Museum of Science here in Boston has an old to-scale model of the solar system. The sun, Mercury, and Venus (I think) are actually on the museum grounds. Pluto is somewhere out in Newton (roughly 10-15 miles from the museum).

  13. #13 |  johnl | 

    Radley we are all interested in your take on the Koch Craine dispute. But feel free not to, as it must be hard for you to write about a friend.

    It’s a challenge to design an organization with continuity. Obviously, everybody is getting old. Under Craine’s interpretation of the agreement, everyone has to wonder what kind of person a late shareholder’s heirs are. That seems like a recepie for a loss of continuity. Maybe Craine is right about what the contract requires, but his idea is bad for Cato.

  14. #14 |  Charlie O | 

    One of the local news station’s around me did a report about prospective employers demanding Facebook passwords. One thing the report mentioned is that it is a violation of Facebook’s terms of service to divulge your password to someone. This puts anyone demanding a FB password in FB’s legal crosshairs. FB has tons of dough, I’d like see them starting suing.

    As to the Rosie puppycide case. It’s just more evidence that it’s time for dog owners to arm themselves. The courts are obviously worthless in holding law enforcement accountable. The judges are bigger cowards than the cops. Some scumbags executes your dog, return the favor. Tit for tat. Shoot the scumbag. I want to be on that jury. NOT GUILTY. Go home.

  15. #15 |  Boyd Durkin | 

    …prospective employers demanding Facebook passwords.

    How to identify companies you shouldn’t work for.

  16. #16 |  croaker | 

    I recall a book about the solar system in my elementary school library that described a model that began with a beach ball as the sun. Wish there was something similar on the net.

  17. #17 |  David | 

    Maybe Craine is right about what the contract requires, but his idea is bad for Cato.

    Possibly, but so is John Hinderaker, Cato Institute Director.

  18. #18 |  ALowe | 

    I wonder if anyone at these companies asking for facebook passwords has any concept of data security. If an employee will give away their facebook password voluntarily, what other credentials can they be convinced to give up?

  19. #19 |  Endless Mike | 

    Have you seen this story? As to waking a reporter up at 1 o’clock in the morning to “discuss” a blog story:
    “Meehan said he didn’t think Oakley would be upset or intimidated because the police sergeant, Mary Kusmiss, regularly deals with the media.”

  20. #20 |  Brandon | 

    The Wyoming story is not nearly as encouraging as I had hoped from the link. The closing line is ““It takes a skilled person to manage the traffic,” Garcia said.”” The whole thing basically comes down to an argument for more top-down control, and ignores the very real concept of spontaneous order.

  21. #21 |  omar | 

    How to identify companies you shouldn’t work for.

    This is one practical life-lesson libertarian thought has give me – you don’t have to work for anyone who is an ass.

    I always tell people “I won’t work for any company that requires drug testing. It’s a trust issue. I will trust my employeer as much as they are willing to trust me. I don’t want to work for people I can’t trust.”

  22. #22 |  FTP | 

    The thing that bothers me most about the Minnesota Facebook case is that the girls’s school counselor seems to have been part of the team that coerced her into giving up the information. Aren’t counselors supposed to work on behalf of the students, and not as agents of law enforcement (they had a frickin’ cop there too!)? And aren’t they also supposed to adhere to certain professional canons, like maintaining confidentiality?

  23. #23 |  jmcross | 

    Some new professionalism NW Florida style:
    http://www.nwfdailynews.com/articles/crestview-48037–.html

  24. #24 |  Pi Guy | 

    While I can certainly see the potential for abuse, it turns out that one of the most significant variables in fatal car accidents is speed differential. If a whole mess of people are going to go 80 in a posted 55 where Grandpa’s doing 47 in the fast lane, statistically, that’s a deadly accident waiting to happen.

    Again, perhaps I’m being too optimistic but this actually seems, if left to run using the device algorithms, to serve a legitimate safetly purpose as opposed to all the rolling-right-turn tix from red light cameras. It essentially aims to get everyone to move at around the same speed, even if that speed is _faster_ than, uh – shall we say, normal.

    But, still, I can imagine that some pol or LEO agency in WY is already trying to come up with a way to offset the cost of licensing stamp lickers or something by selctively rigging the system.

  25. #25 |  C. S. P. Schofield | 

    FTP,

    I talk with teens, or recent teens from time to time. Now, maybe I’m inclined by nature to talk with the unruly, but the impression I get is that the high school kids of today, having been systematically lied to all through elementary and middle school, just naturally assume that the administration (counsellors included) are finks and The Enemy. Certainly, that’s the way school admin is structured.

  26. #26 |  that guy | 

    I wouldn’t trust a school counselor anymore than a politician.

  27. #27 |  JimBob | 

    FTP:

    “Aren’t counselors supposed to work on behalf of the students…”

    HAHAHAHA! Oh, God, I haven’t had such a good laugh in a long time. My school counselors as a kid were the most unbelievably authority-friendly, anti-kid, anti-accountability motherfuckers on earth. There’s no professional canon for school counselors; in a lot of cases, they don’t even have training in psychology.

    Story time: I had an abusive second grade teacher. I won’t go into detail, except to say that it was so bad that parent volunteers and even other teachers made LOGS of all the horrible things this woman did to me. It was a group of concerned parent volunteers that finally told my parents what was going on (I hadn’t reported the abuse because the teacher had threatened to have me expelled). My parents hit the roof and demanded that I be placed with another teacher.

    The school responded by pulling me out of class for two hours EVERY DAY for SIX WEEKS to have the school counselor “evaluate” me. I spent most of the time sitting in her little waiting area while she talked to other kids. Then the counselor used the fact that my grades slipped from “Excellent” to “Satisfactory” (I was missing one-third of the material every day, after all) to write a report saying that I had made the whole thing up because I was frustrated by my “incapacity to understand the material”.

    No evidence, no investigation, and she barely even talked to me– and suddenly the whole problem was something that I had made up because I couldn’t understand my schoolwork.

    She didn’t even realize that somebody ELSE had reported the abuse, not me. She never bothered to read the letter my parents sent to the school, detailing what other parents had witnessed. She never even looked at the logs that other TEACHERS had sent in with the letter. She just manufactured a reason to call me a liar and tried to cover the school’s ass.

    The best part? The school counselor had landed the gig directly from her previous job as a phys ed teacher. She didn’t have any training whatsoever as a psychologist. She hadn’t even passed Florida’s “here’s how to be a school counselor if you’re completely unqualified” course.

    So, yeah. School counselors don’t give a damn about the students. They exist to serve the school’s interests and the teachers’ interests, and students are the first ones to be thrown under the bus.

  28. #28 |  Highway | 

    I don’t really see where having a variable speed limit makes it more prone to abuse than a standard sign that’s obviously too low. At worst, it becomes the same case as the too-low standard sign. I can imagine a case where the cop either lies about the signage, or they’re monkeying around with what it says, but in those cases, it should become standard to subpoena the public log of what the signs were saying.

    I can definitely see where showing what the prevailing speed right now is could be helpful, as long as people realize that’s what it’s showing, not a ‘speed limit’ that’s set arbitrarily like they’re used to.

  29. #29 |  Leon Wolfeson | 

    @21 – Absolutely, unless there’s an actual reason for it (i.e. Air Traffic Controllers). There’s no such in the field in which I work.

    (Of course, if I turned up to work in an unfit state, I’d be hammered anyway. And rightly so. But that’s entirely different)

  30. #30 |  Highway | 

    Of course, I also have to add that I think red light cameras, as they were originally envisioned, could be a terrific safety tool. Put up a camera, put up a ton of signs, and also make the light safe and compliant with proper yellow times. Then there’s no excuse for people running the light, since your yellow dilemma zone is removed. Give tickets for people who cross the stop bar on red, and continue through the intersection. None of these chintzy tickets for stopping on the stop bar, or showing the car in the intersection on red, or even rolling through a right on red. A photo crossing the stop bar on red and continuing through the intersection on red, and issue the ticket.

    But noooooooo, they couldn’t do that.

    Jackholes.

  31. #31 |  contrarian | 

    “Of course, I also have to add that I think red light cameras, as they were originally envisioned, could be a terrific safety tool. Put up a camera, put up a ton of signs, and also make the light safe and compliant with proper yellow times. Then there’s no excuse for people running the light, since your yellow dilemma zone is removed. Give tickets for people who cross the stop bar on red, and continue through the intersection. None of these chintzy tickets for stopping on the stop bar, or showing the car in the intersection on red, or even rolling through a right on red. A photo crossing the stop bar on red and continuing through the intersection on red, and issue the ticket.

    But noooooooo, they couldn’t do that.

    Jackholes.”

    This is exactly the way that red light cameras work in Washington, DC. For a ticket to be issued there has to be two pictures: one showing the car not yet in the intersection with the light red, another showing the car in the intersection with the light red. No tickets for entering on yellow, no tickets for jumping the green, no tickets for right on red.

    The cameras are not hidden. Their presence is announced by signs. It is very easy to avoid getting a photo ticket by one simple step: don’t run red lights. And still they write hundreds of thousands of tickets every year, and collect tens of millions of dollars in fines. And then they have the gall to complain…

  32. #32 |  Little Criminals | Libertarian Book Club | 

    […] Criminals | Libertarian Book Club Little CriminalsDave Killion — March 12, 2012Via The Agitator, I see the ACLU is helping a 12-year-old girl pursue justice -“A Minnesota middle school […]

  33. #33 |  croaker | 

    @19 That should be a Justice Department investigation with both cops looking at ten years in Marion. But it won’t.

  34. #34 |  Sean L. | 

    Solar system page: Try it on an iPhone. It’s fuuuun!

    Detective convicted of murder: I rode the train with her on/off for a few years. She always creeped me out.

  35. #35 |  primus | 

    Schools are evil. Their sole purpose is to turn out compliant little state soldiers. Home schooling is the answer.

  36. #36 |  jmcross | 

    Serial bad cop slips through the cracks, is lifted to a high position, then surprises everyone by continuing to be an asshole.
    http://www.nwfdailynews.com/articles/police-47948-crestview-among.html

  37. #37 |  CyniCAl | 

    •Wyoming road’s speed limits determined in part by average speed of drivers. We need more of this.

    Freedom is directly proportional to population density. Think about it.

  38. #38 |  Sean L. | 

    Primus:

    Home schooling is the answer to the question, “State school or home school?” It is not, however, THE answer for everyone. (I would venture that it isn’t the answer for most.)

  39. #39 |  Exe | 

    Speed limit signs are there to keep people going around the same speed. If tons of people are doing 80 in a 55, the drivers going 55 are not the dangerous people. If those doing 80 slowed down, the problem would solve itself. Just because you can go faster doesn’t mean you should go faster.

  40. #40 |  Bob Mc | 

    “#16 | croaker | March 12th, 2012 at 1:39 pm

    I recall a book about the solar system in my elementary school library that described a model that began with a beach ball as the sun. Wish there was something similar on the net.”

    http://fuse.pha.jhu.edu/~wpb/scale.html

    Solar System Scaled to 12-inch Sun

    Parameter Real Distance/Size Scaled Distance/Size
    —————– ——————- ———————

    Sun (diameter) 1,392,000 km 12 inches (basketball) or
    Mercury (distance) 0.39 AU 41.5 feet
    Mercury (diameter) 4880 km 0.05 inches (grain of sand)
    Venus (distance) 0.72 AU 76.6 feet
    Venus (diameter) 12112 km 0.11 inches (small pebble)
    Earth (distance) 150 million km = 1 AU 106.4 feet
    Earth (diameter) 12,756 km 0.12 inches (small pebble)
    Mars (distance) 228 million km 163.6 feet
    Mars (diameter) 6,800 km 0.06 inches (grain of sand)
    Jupiter (distance) 5.20 AU 552 feet
    Jupiter (diameter) 142,984 km 1.2 inches (ping pong ball)
    Saturn (distance) 9.54 AU 1012 feet (>3 football fields)
    Saturn (diameter) 120,536 km 1.04 inches (ping pong ball w/rings!)
    Pluto (distance) 39.54 AU 4200 feet (almost 0.8 miles)
    Pluto (diameter) 2,300 km 0.02 inches (very small sand grain!)

    Next nearest star 4.3 light years = 5680 miles(!) or 9088 km
    (Proxima Centauri) 25 trillion miles = (roughly from Baltimore to Hawaii!)
    42 trillion km

  41. #41 |  johnl | 

    Agreed about John Hinderaker. He seems like a mostly clever guy who experiences intermittent lucidity. This is not who Cato needs. But that’s not as bad as picking people based on their relatives.

  42. #42 |  Ron | 

    @#9: If I understand the legal doctrine of “in loco parentis” correctly, it means that a child requesting presence of an attorney to a school counselor or other school official would likely do no good, as the counselor or official, legally acting in the place of the parent, can deny the child’s attorney request as a parent could if the parent so chose. People fail to realize that sending your kid to school means you are effectively sharing legal custody of your child with the government.

  43. #43 |  Highway | 

    EXE at #39.

    Speed limit signs are there to keep people going around the same speed. If tons of people are doing 80 in a 55, the drivers going 55 are not the dangerous people.

    This is well known to be false, and the cause of more accidents than a group of people going 20 MPH over the number on a black and white sign.

    Speed Limit signs are there to try to legislate that people should be forced to travel at a speed that is below the natural speed that they would travel on a particular stretch of roadway. They frequently have only the most tenuous connection to reality. If the speed limit were set at the speed that people ‘want’ (based on roadway geometry, traffic conditions, weather conditions, and many other factors) to travel on a road, then the signs would be redundant and unnecessary. Speed Limit signs as they exist are a tools for revenue generation, for morality compliance, and for bureaucratic meddling.

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