Later On

A blog written for those whose interests more or less match mine.

Archive for January 4th, 2011

Stories that will amaze you

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Written by Leisureguy

4 January 2011 at 12:49 pm

Posted in Daily life, GOP

Police out of control

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This is disgusting. Sharon Coolidge reports in the Cincinnati Inquirer:

John Harmon was coming off a late night at work when he left his downtown marketing firm for his Anderson Township home just after midnight in October 2009.

The 52-year-old longtime diabetic’s blood sugar levels had dipped to a dangerously low level causing him to weave into another lane.

A Hamilton County sheriff’s deputy spotted him on Clough Pike and suspected drunken driving.

What happened over the next two minutes and 20 seconds should never happen to anyone, Harmon said.

Deputies broke the window of Harmon’s SUV, shocked him seven times with a Taser, cut him out of his seatbelt and wrestled him to the ground, severely dislocating his elbow, and causing trauma to his shoulder and thumb.

The deputies’ actions prompted a state highway patrol trooper to pull one deputy away from Harmon because he was so concerned about how Harmon was being treated. That trooper alerted his bosses to the deputies’ actions.

Even after learning the incident was a medical emergency, deputies charged Harmon with resisting arrest and failing to comply with a police officer’s order.

"I thought for sure I was going to die," Harmon said. "I remember praying to God, ‘Help me through this.’"

Harmon, a tall and burly black man, owns a marketing company with his wife. He said he moved to the mostly white township for its good schools, and said he believes he wouldn’t have gotten the same treatment if it was a white man.

"I do think that maybe (race) was a factor," Harmon said. "Just out of common decency some of the things that were done here don’t make sense, even if I were drunk."

Harmon and his wife, Stephanie Harmon, filed a civil rights lawsuit Dec. 20 in U.S. District Court against Hamilton County, the sheriff’s office and four deputies: Ryan Wolf, Matthew Wissel, John Haynes and Shawn Cox, and their supervisor, Sgt. Barbara Stuckey.

The couple allege that Harmon’s civil rights were violated because of his false arrest, malicious prosecution and the excessive force used. They also cited battery; malicious prosecution; intentional infliction of emotional distress and loss of consortium. They want an unspecified amount of compensation. . .

Continue reading. This will cost that city millions.

Written by Leisureguy

4 January 2011 at 11:24 am

Posted in Daily life, Government, Law

Grueling stupidity

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Steven Greenhouse writes a peculiar news report in the NY Times titled “Strained States Turning to Laws to Curb Labor Unions.” The story is frustrating because it lacks information and accepts clueless arguments. For example, Scott Walker, governor of Wisconsin, seems to think Wisconsin public employees do not pay taxes:

“We can no longer live in a society where the public employees are the haves and taxpayers who foot the bills are the have-nots,” Mr. Walker, a Republican, said in a speech. “The bottom line is that we are going to look at every legal means we have to try to put that balance more on the side of taxpayers.”

A kind reporter would have let the governor know that Wisconsin public employees are in fact taxpayers, and his entire statement is the equivalent of farting with his mouth.

The story opens with this puzzler:

Faced with growing budget deficits and restive taxpayers, elected officials from Maine to Alabama, Ohio to Arizona, are pushing new legislation to limit the power of labor unions, particularly those representing government workers, in collective bargaining and politics.

State officials from both parties are wrestling with ways to curb the salaries and pensions of government employees, which typically make up a significant percentage of state budgets.

Have you noticed the complete omission from the opening (and the entire story) of any sign of accountability.

Here’s the situation: A and B are negotiating. Naturally enough, each attempts to maximize his own benefit, but since it’s a true negotiation, A and B must in the end agree in order to have a contract and agreement.

The agreement turns out to be bad for B. Whom would you say deserves the blame: A? or B?

I’d be inclined to blame B, assuming it was an honest negotiation with nothing concealed. (And if anything material was concealed, I believe that would void the contract in any case.)

So apparently we had a bunch of elected officials, all over the country, enter into agreements with the public employees’ unions. The agreements turn out to be bad for the government. Who is at fault? I would have to say that it’s not the unions, it’s the elected officials.

But the Right will always blame unions, because the Right believes that employees should have no power. Companies (and governments) should be able, in the view of the Right, to do what they want with their employees.

When the American auto manufacturers were in terrible trouble, I have a right-wing acquaintance who thought it was all the fault of the unions. But:

The unions don’t design the car, plan the product line, plan and administer the advertising, set prices, do competitor research, and so on: that is all the job of management.

And in fact the unions don’t make the labor contracts: Those are agreements between management and the unions. Management is as much a part of those agreements as unions, and if the agreements are bad for the company, it was management at fault: management is responsible for running the company, and management is responsible for agreeing only to sensible contracts that properly protect the company.

We have unions for a reason: the record shows that companies—and management—will in general treat their workers as shabbily as they possibly can, paying them as little as they can get away with, and cutting costs by cutting safety and all other programs that protect workers. Look at Massey Energy to see why we need unions.

And we also need better managers and better elected officials, ones who can exercise responsibility and accept accountability.

Written by Leisureguy

4 January 2011 at 11:21 am

Posted in Business, Daily life, Government

Tagged with

TOBS Lavender

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Lovely shave. The Grosvenor provided three passes of lather (although the third pass was a bit sparse) worked up from Taylor of Old Bond Street Lavender shaving soap. The Eclipse Red Ring with its Swedish Gillette blade provided three flawless passes, and a splash of Pashana provided the fragrance to get the day rolling.

Written by Leisureguy

4 January 2011 at 11:02 am

Posted in Shaving

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