Thursday, May 22, 2014

Democrat run Detroit drops under 700,000 (was once nearly 2 million)

Detroit is the end result of democrat run societies. There's 50+ years of  "progressive" democrat rule (with one moderate in Dave Bing) from Jerome P. Cavanagh to Ed McNamara protege Mike Duggan. Notice that the riots started under Cavanagh's watch. White democrats FUBARed the city as much as anyone else, despite their denials. (

From the Detroit News:

Detroit— The 60-year exodus from Detroit is continuing but may be slowing, as the city’s population has fallen under 700,000 residents, according to estimates released today by the U.S. Census Bureau.
The government pegs the city’s population at 688,701 as of summer 2013, down nearly 10,000 residents from 2012. The rate of decline, though, has slowed to an average of 7,500 per year since 2010 compared with 24,000 per year in the 2000s.
Suburban counties — Oakland, Macomb and Livingston — gained about 1 percent in population, while Wayne County lost about 1 percent, the records show. Its decline is fueled largely by Detroit, which had 1.9 million residents in 1950 and is now smaller than it was at any point since before 1920.

I don't consider Livingston (or Lapeer, St Clair, or Monroe) a suburban Detroit county (which I limit to Tri-County), but that's another discussion.

The census data don’t indicate where Detroit residents are going, but show that some outer suburbs are booming six years after the real-estate meltdown.
“Sprawl is back,” said Kurt Metzger, director emeritus of Data Driven Detroit who reviewed the numbers.

For all the talk about "back to the city," it just doesn't happen with most people. People live in an area for jobs, schools, crime, and costs. Detroit CAN come back if the voters there choose to have it come back. If they continue to support democrats and the same people who screwed up the city, it will not come back. If Detroit refugees vote for the same types of people that fubared Detroit, which I see happening in parts of Oakland County, then it will travel down the same road in Detroit. It's not geography or race that causes these problems. It's bad public officials that run these municipalities into the ground, along with the voters who put them there.

Here in Livingston County, it's our responsibility not to go down the road that Detroit has gone, and that some other communities are following.

Bigmouths vs action

While I don't think this issue should have been a court case or a ticket in the first place, this is not going to do anything to help.

From the Argus.

Libertarian candidate James Weeks II is organizing a rally to protest a Brighton teenager getting ticketed and fined for swearing in downtown Brighton.
Weeks, who is running for the 8th Congressional District, is calling his event the “This is f------ bulls---” rally.
The rally will be held noon to 3 p.m. on May 31 next to the Imagination Station playground, where the Colin Andersen was ticketed.

This is a cheap publicity stunt for a political candidate who got 3.7% in his race for state rep in 2012 against Cindy Denby. He's now running for Congress, and I expect similar results.

I titled this "Bigmouths vs Action" for a reason. This rally isn't about free speech, nor about Colin Andersen. It's about James Weeks II getting in the papers. Weeks is taking the bigmouth route. Bullshit is one of my favorite words in the English language, especially when it comes to politics. It certainly applies here. Livingston County isn't a friendly county for protests in most cases. Calling a rally a f'ing bullshit rally while apt, isn't going to get a lot of support for either his campaign, nor do much for the legitimate cause of free speech. This will do nothing to help Colin Andersen, and may in fact hurt him.

Again, Andersen should not have gotten a ticket. He shouldn't have swore in that situation, but shouldn't have gotten a ticket for it. It shouldn't have been a legal matter.

If Lewis wants to really made a stand for free speech, he should raise money and offer to pay for Andersen's appeals, should he decide to go that route. That would be effective, teach the police a lesson, won't alienate the public, and make an impact for free speech and overzealous police powers.

Monday, May 19, 2014

Brighton police tickets 19yr old who swears in front of him

"John Spartan, you are fined one credit for violation of the verbal morality statute"

Brighton makes the national news again over language. Keep in mind that Brighton has the law where it's illegal to be annoying. It's even in Time magazine. .  I don't consider Brighton a suburb, but that's another debate.
This was in today's Argus:

Swear in downtown Brighton near the Imagination Station playground, and there’s a good chance you’ll be getting a ticket.
Colin Andersen learned this lesson the hard way.
Upset that his friend had been ticketed for skateboarding in downtown Brighton and told to leave, Andersen said he was simply venting when he said, “This is f------ bull----.”
The 19-year-old Brighton resident was hanging out with his friends on a sunny April day in a parking lot next to the pavilion and Imagination Station; Andersen said he swore under his breath and no children heard him.
However, a Brighton Police Department officer heard him and issued him a ticket for disorderly conduct.
“What got me to start arguing a little bit, they were asking all of us to leave because he got a ticket,” Andersen said. “That’s not fair. We’re just standing around.”
Brighton Police Chief Tom Wightman said it’s OK for teenagers to hang out downtown, and the city doesn’t have a law prohibiting certain words.
“That’s fine if they want to behave and use the facility like anybody else,” Wightman said. “It’s when they misbehave (that) it becomes an issue. We’re going to be watching.”
Wightman said the playground is popular, especially with families and young children. Sometimes, police are called due to teenagers or young adults acting disorderly.
“That’s what gets on our radar, their behavior,” he said.
Wightman said teenagers hanging out downtown is an “ongoing issue.”

I'm not going to defend the actions themselves. I swear a bit, and in politics use the word bullshit all the time on this blog. It's a great word because it describes so much of what's out there that just can't be covered by other words with the same meaning. I tend to avoid that word in front of it here and don't "F'ing swear" in front of women and children. Time, place, and manner. I also don't use it in professional settings. I wouldn't have used it if I am in a similar situation as Andersen here, today. I'm also 35 years old instead of 19. At 19, I probably would have gotten the ticket and would have said the same thing. I never was (and still am not) that respectful of authority. That's why I'm not a democrat.

Besides, use your 5th Amendment rights and don't talk to the Police!

There's also a difference between disapproving of a behavior and using government sanctions against the behavior.

Andersen said this was the first ticket he’s ever received; he said he doesn’t even have a speeding ticket.
Andersen fought the ticket but lost when he went before a Livingston County District Court magistrate to present his side of what happened. He was fined $200.
Andersen said he doesn’t think it was right to issue him a ticket without a warning. If he had been warned, he would have listened to the officer.
“I would have respected his authority,” he said.
At the hearing, Andersen said the police testified they had given him a warning, something he denies happened.

The infamous informal hearing. The judge/magistrate hears what the cop says and hears what you say. He knows the cops well because he always sees him in court at informal hearings. He likely believes the cop's version. He may or may not believe you. As soon as he said that he swore under his breath, he lost. Informal hearings are like the Judge Joe Brown show (arbitration), not an actual trial. This is a civil infraction with broader rules as well that are not in a defendant's favor. The cops says he gave a warning. I don't know if that's true. It wouldn't be the first time a cop lied in court. Maybe he lied. Maybe he didn't. I wasn't there. Cops tend to have zero patience with a friend of someone ticketed, arrested, or detained.

Before I got my State Bar Association Pnumber, I got a car accident ticket when I was rear-ended. It was for "unable to stop with assured clear distance." I lost in an informal hearing after the East Lansing PD lied in court. Judge David Jordon, now retired (thank God) sided with the cop. I would have argued it much differently today than I did then. Again, that was before I got the P number. First off, I'd always take the formal hearing and deal with attorneys, not the informal hearing with only cops and a district judge or magistrate.

What I don't know is what the exact ordinance Andersen was accused of violating. He might have been screwed just for getting the cop's attention in a "parking lot". There's two "Disorderly Conduct" ordinances listed on the City of Brighton's website. One has to do with parking lots.

Sec. 54-104. Disorderly conduct at parking lots.

(a)  Purpose. Because the city council is convinced of the ever present danger to the safety of persons using the public parking lots located in the city, it is the objective of the city to prevent injuries to persons using the public parking lots. Accordingly, in order to avoid accidents resulting in personal injuries and property damage, and thereby protect the health, safety and welfare of all individuals using the public parking lots, the council wishes to prohibit the use of public parking lots situated in the city for any purpose other than for the parking of motor vehicles and for purposes incident thereto and for the purpose of serving pedestrian traffic to and from points outside of said parking lots. This section is not intended to limit the intent or the effect of this article.
(b)  Conduct prohibited. No person shall:
(1)  Conduct himself in any parking lot so as to create a hazard to himself or others who are using the public parking lot.
(2)  Use such parking lot for any purpose other than the parking of a motor vehicle, or the movement of such motor vehicle incident thereto, or travelling to and from such motor vehicle, or traversing such parking lot on foot or bicycle from and to points outside of said parking lot.
(c)  Any person found to violate this section shall be guilty of a civil infraction and shall be punished by a fine(s) as set forth in section 1-16(b).
(Code 1981, § 121.3; Ord. No. 482, § I, 7-17-03)

If this was a swearing charge, it'd likely get tossed out after the infamous Rifle River case which was unconstitutionally vague. This might be argued on those grounds, but this is a little different of an ordinance. However, it looks like Andersen got the ticket because he said that the cop's ticket to his friend was "F'ing bullshit".  He said that and the chief of police didn't disagree with that leading to the ticket.There is a lot that could be tossed out in court. It's not fought because a lot of these are civil infractions or smaller misdemeanors.  It costs less money to not fight these than it does to get an attorney and fight these in a formal hearing. It's less headache. No time has to be taken off from work by paying the fines. There's no attorney fees which will be much more than $200.

I don't like catch all ordinances (ie....the annoy law, even disorderly conduct) and they should often be fought on vagueness grounds among others. Law should be specific, clear, and easy to understand. 

He shouldn't have sworn at the cop, even if the ticket to his friend is "F'ing bullshit." He's not going to help his friend that way and he got the cop's attention. There may have been women and kids that heard that. At 19, he's supposed to be an adult. Should that have deserved a disorderly conduct for that? I don't think so. I don't the road that goes down. Not everything should be a legal matter.

Monday, May 05, 2014

May 6th - Elections in parts of Livingston County, Precinct Delegate Filing Deadline

There are some elections tomorrow in Livingston County
Hartland Schools - Millage Renewal
Pinckney Schools - .30 Recreational and Playground Millage
Fenton Schools - $11 Million dollar bond
Stockbridge Schools - $18 Million dollar bond

Also, the precinct delegate filing deadline is also May 6th - 4PM. If you are running and do not know if you are filed, contact your County Clerk's office. If you name isn't there as filed, then you are not a candidate for precinct delegate. There's been reports of some filings not getting turned into the clerk's office in a timely manner. The safest way to avoid that is to go directly to the County Clerk's office. In Livingston County, that is at the old courthouse in Howell. 200 E Grand River Ave Howell, MI 48843. That's the safest way to assure you are filed.

I do not expect write-ins to be able to win in most precincts. There are a lot of contests this year, largely due to the convention battle for Lt Governor's race. Many openings are filling up quick, including places that normally do not fill up. If you want to be a precinct delegate and have not filed, now is the time to do so.