Wednesday, October 1, 2014

How Do You Rule?


For John, BLUFBeing a judge is not all that easy.  Nothing to see here; just move along.



How do I play this game without violating copyright laws?  Oh, well, here goes.  In The [Lowell] Sun Columnist Michael Goldman gives us "Judgment day is here and you're making the call".  This is from this last Sunday.  You can find the column on line here.
This is the second of a new regular monthly feature in which I find stories in the news and you get to decide what you would do based on your personal beliefs and value system, were you making the call as a judge in the case.
I don't remember the first one.

Anyway, here goes.

ITEM ONE

Reducing a sentence for extortion.  The convicted is a "made man" with two decades in jail for a crime he didn't commit.

DISCUSSION:  How do we know he is a "made man"?

RULING:  A miscarriage of justice is a terrible thing and the individual should seek compensation from the State, and if laws allow, and they should, go after anyone who provided false evidence or suppressed evidence.  They deserve to lose their job, if nothing else.  But, that is aside.  The sentence stands.

ITEM TWO

Should the U.S. Tennis Association hold the national tennis championships on Yom Kipper.

Discussion:  I don't think youth sports should be on Sunday mornings, but they are.  We are a pluralistic nation and we can not burden one with the religion of another.

RULING:  Let the games commence.

ITEM THREE

Man hits pier and kills two, while drunk and speeding.

DISCUSSION:  Was the lighting on the pier in violation of some law or local ordnance?

RULING:  If the lights were legal you must turn a blind eye to the appeal.

ITEM FOUR

Should Roger Goodell go?

DISCUSSION:  We are past the time for rational discussion on this issue and there are no adults to step up and say so.

ADVICE:  Turn it over to Condi.

ITEM FIVE

A supposedly successful vice president is found to have fudged his resume regarding schooling.

DISCUSSION:  He lied on his application and his company is not that happy with him, since HR is being allowed to get rid of him for their own bureaucratic reasons.

RULING:  He is gone.

ITEM SIX

Convicted killer Oscar Pistorius is still eligible to compete for his nation during the next Olympics trials.  Should his conviction matter or just his speed?

DISCUSSION:  The Olympics are about sportsmanship and Mr Pistorius wasn't very sporting when he shot his girlfriend, who was in the other room.

RULING:  Oscar is out.

ITEM SEVEN

Speeding bikers in New York City—probably Couriers—and the mayhem they cause, including injury and death. Now Boston Bikers are asking for more bike lanes.

DISCUSSION:  OK, so NYC is messed up, but how is Boston doing?  Further, how would that impact both auto traffic and auto parking?

RULING:  If you don't have madmen on bikes, and you won't make the auto traffic worse, then go ahead.  As for Lowell, it is still an open issue and we should hold where we are.


By true way, Mr Michael Goldman didn't do us the courtesy of leaving his EMail.  Maybe I can track him down on line at Goldman Associates in Boston.

Regards  —  Cliff

Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Killing Civil-Asset Forfeiture


For John, BLUFThis should be a bi-partisan issue.  Nothing to see here; just move along.



We all remember past discussions of the Caswell Motel, such as this item talking about Civil-Asset Forfeiture Laws, and this one talking about how after Federal Attorney Carmen Ortiz harassed the Caswell Motel the owner sold the business, with the motel to become a bowling alley.

Civil-Asset Forfeiture is an example of a good idea, an apparently good law, grown out of control.  Another example is the RICO Statute, designed to go after Mafia type organizations.

In Sunday's edition of The [Lowell] Sun is an opinion piece by Attorneys John Yoder and Brad Cates, headlined "Kill the monster that was our baby", about Civil-Asset Forfeiture.  It is worth reading.

Aside from the fact that all Laws should have a Sunset Clause, we need to ask for great care in drafting laws.  And we should step back when we seem to be targeting a class of criminals, to ensure we are not going to also sweep up law-abiding citizens.

Regards  —  Cliff

"These are not the changes you are looking for"


For John, BLUFChange requires voters to act differently.  Nothing to see here; just move along.



On City Life this morning Host George Anthes condemned various Republicans in the City, including your's truly, for not supporting worthy Democrats for the General Court.  OK, that is an approach.

Then, with a couple of minutes to go in the show there was agreement by those on the show about how corrupt things are down on Beacon Hill, which results in our road repair monies not being properly and effectively spend.

I don't think they saw the irony in their positions.

Which leads us to a letter to the editor in today's edition of The [Lowell] Sun, from Mr Rick Green of Pepperell, responding to a Column by Mr Peter Lucas.  Mr Lucas was all up in the air over a mailing by Massachusetts Fiscal Alliance, of which Mr Green is Chairman. The Mass Fiscal Alliance has been pointing out the voting records of current members of the General Court.  For example, voting to index the gas tax to inflation (Hint:  Vote YES on Ballot Question 1).

Here is an extract from the letter:

I also had to smile, noticing Mr. Lucas' choices to ignore decreases in local aid on Rep. Arciero's watch, to gloss over Rep. Arciero's indexing the gas tax to inflation, and to fail to even mention Rep. Arciero's vote to make committee votes unavailable to the public.
That last one is especially troubling.  Why should committee votes be secret?  What happened to the idea of transparency in government?

If we don't like the direction of our Commonwealth, but we keep voting the party in power back into office we are not likely to see the change we think we are looking for.

Regards  —  Cliff

  The Democrats seems to have mastered the Jedi Mind Tricks techniques.  Remember Alec Guinness saying to the guards "These are not the droids you are looking for."

UTEC Grand Opening


For John, BLUFThis is the positive side of our teens.  Nothing to see here; just move along.



Cafe UTEC is having its grand opening at 1100 this morning, until 1400 (2:00 PM).

41 Warren Street.

It is about the food, but it is about the teens and what they have accomplished.

Regards  —  Cliff

Monday, September 29, 2014

Voter Fraud in The Constitution State


For John, BLUFNot Connecticut!  Nothing to see here; just move along.



We got to the article in the New Haven Register via Weasel Zippers, on a link from the Instapundit.  The headline reads:
Bridgeport State Rep. Christina Ayala arrested on 19 voting fraud charges
The second paragraph reads:
Ayala, 31, is accused of voting in local and state elections in districts she did not live, the Chief State’s Attorney’s Office said in a press release.
And she apparently pulled her poor Mother into this imbroglio.

I am not sure requiring voter ID would have uncovered this sooner, but it might well have acted as a deterrent.  Or not.  It would appear, from the web site of Connecticut Secretary of State Denise W Merrill that an ID card is required to vote.  And, Ms Merrill is a Democrat.  I wonder if voter fraud would be worse if there was no voter ID requirement?

Hat tip to the Instapundit, who commented, "And yet, I keep hearing it’s a myth".

Or a "dog whistle".  That is, accusing Republicans of talking about voter ID is a dog whistle to Democrats saying that Republicans wish to suppress certain minorities.  "Oh what a tangled web we weave…"

Regards  —  Cliff

Sunday, September 28, 2014

Questions for President Obama from Within His Own Camp


For John, BLUFThe Democrats have not just fallen into lockstep behind the President.  Nothing to see here; just move along.



From The Washington Post there is this OpEd by Ms Rosa Brooks, "Why Obama's assurance of 'no boots on the ground' isn't so reassuring". Here is the short bio of Ms Books:
Rosa Brooks, a law professor at Georgetown University and a senior fellow at the New America Foundation, was an Obama administration appointee at the Defense Department from 2009 to 2011.  She is married to an Army Special Forces officer.
The President is having a tough sell job within his own Party.

And then there is this from "Speech Boy" (Michael A Cohen) in our local Boston Globe—"Obama’s imperial about-face on ISIS".  (The print edition did not include the word "imperial" in the headline.)  Here is the conclusion.

Congress is not off the hook here.  The legislative branch has a responsibility to weigh in and not abdicate its responsibility by heading home as the current Congress has done.  But considering that Obama has said he doesn’t need their permission, there is little political incentive for them to act.  If anything, Obama should demand their support, for precisely the reasons he told the Globe six years ago.

In the era of the imperial presidency, Obama may end up being the most imperial of all — an outcome that would have been unimaginable seven years ago but one for which the next president intent on fighting an endless war with no congressional check will thank him.

For those who are thinking I am dredging up another Republican, I assure you from reading articles and EMails from Mr Cohen that he is a Progressive and up to this point a strong supporter of President Obama and his path.

Regards  —  Cliff

Saturday, September 27, 2014

Cultural Cluelessness


For John, BLUFMaybe we should all send copies of the Apostles Creed to their Lordships, the Editors of The New York Times.  Nothing to see here; just move along.



While a lot of Roman Catholics get confused by the terms Resurrection, Ascension and Assumption, one would expect the nation's Newspaper of Record to get these kinds of things straight.  Apparently not.  per the Daily Caller the NYT identified the Church of the Holy Seplucher as the place where Jesus is buried.  Not according to your average Christian.  They believe He rose from the dead, and thus is no longer buried, there or anywhere.  You may not believe it, but it is culturally insensitive to suggest that Christians believe he is still buried.

Matthew 28-6.

Hat tip to the InstaPundit.

Regards  —  Cliff