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Showing posts from June, 2020

We Digitized the Mob, and There's No Place to Hide

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Why can’t our leaders bring themselves to condemn anti-social violence? The most shocking aspect of the wave of rioting and destruction that has been unleashed on many of our American cities in the wake of George Floyd’s death is not that there is an underlying discontent with the rate of progress in racial equality. That is understandable. What is not is the way that mayors, governors and members of Congress have not just tolerated, but endorsed, mob violence as an acceptable weapon of social change. We saw that in Minneapolis following the death of George Floyd while in police custody. People with a brain were outraged by what they saw. They wanted to protest, to speak out, and to demand justice. But when they came together in the streets, they discovered how quickly protest can transform into riot, and how demands for justice can be used to justify injustice. The basic premise of justice, after all, is recompense, making sure that wrongdoers pay a price for their crime. Yet there wa

De Blasio Turns and Runs Away Like the Chicken He Is

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Queen's Woman confronts Mayor de Blasio about his recent trip to Germany to appear at a protest rally and his lack of support for police. Mayor de Blasio is quoted as saying to his security detail, "You need to get me away from this woman!" Watch the video. To see more CLICK HERE .

UPDATE- Tucker Carlson Interviews St. Louis Man Who Defended His Home

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Tucker Carlson interviewed Mark McCloskey tonight on his top rated program. In the segment, McCloskey was able to give his side of the story and share what he was feeling as an angry mob broke into his neighborhood and appeared just feet from his house. He’s now facing potential “assault” charges for “intimidating” the group that the local DA described as peaceful protesters. Before McCloskey came on though, Carlson laid out exactly who that DA is. You’ll be less than shocked to learn that she’s another product of George Soros’ recent campaign to install far-left, anti-law and order DAs across the country. The billionaire poured millions into local races and it has reaped wins across bluer urban centers. As Carlson notes, only 23% of the criminal cases sent to Kim Gardner by the St. Louis Police Department were ultimately charged and pursued. Just as we’ve seen from prosecutors in New York, Chicago, and elsewhere, this DA sees herself as a social justice warrior and any attempts to cri

States Beg, Borrow and Cut to Close Massive Budget Gaps

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It’s crunch time for U.S. states as they face their worst fiscal crisis in decades brought on by the Covid-19 pandemic that’s decimated tax collections. Eleven states have yet to enact a budget for the fiscal year that begins Wednesday. And for those that have, they’ve been forced to slash spending, lay off workers and count on billions of dollars in potential federal aid that remains bogged down in Washington. “The biggest theme that we are seeing across state budgets is uncertainty,” said Eric Kim, senior director of public finance at Fitch Ratings. The financial crisis amid the pandemic is forcing states and cities to make tough choices even as they seek help from Washington. Moody’s Analytics has projected that state and local governments will need at least $500 billion in additional federal aid over the next two years to avoid major economic damage. While House Democrats passed a stimulus measure that would provide some $1 trillion of aid to governments, the rescue has stalled in

Houston Mother Attacked While Unloading Groceries

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Living in a city where it is not even safe to take your groceries from your car to your apartment. The Houston Police Department is asking for your help in identifying a man seen in surveillance video assaulting and robbing a mother while her young son stands closely by. The video released by the HPD Robbery Division shows the suspect run and punch the mother in the face, causing her to fall to the ground. The suspect then continues to assault her while she's on the ground. The man was one of two suspects who pulled up to the complex in a white four-door Nissan. After attacking the woman, the video shows the man grab the mother's purse and then run back into the Nissan, which then sped away. You can watch the full video above. Police say the attack happened while the mother was unloading groceries at an apartment complex near 7000 Renwick Dr. The suspect's face and vehicle are clearly visible in the video. Police say the white four-door Nissan is very recognizable; it's

Why Would Any Texan Support Risk Assessments Now?

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In the last two legislative sessions, there have been bills proposed seeking bail reform.  In both sessions, a major component of reform was the adoption of a risk assessment tool.  In the last couple of years, the Texas Office of Court Administration has even developed their own risk assessment tool called PRAISTX.     The biggest flaw in these risk assessment tools is the use of proprietary black box algorithms to make important criminal justice decisions.  These are the same type of algorithms that Big Data companies use to bombard us with ads every day.  While some might appreciate an algorithm recommending books or television shows, many others have long been against their use in making determinations on insurance rates, and whether someone gets a home loan or credit card.   A group of some of the largest technology companies in the world (Partnership on AI) have issued a joint statement opposing the use of algorithms as a part of criminal justice reform.  In allowing the public t

Bondsmen Letting Their Voices Be Heard- Delegates at State Conventions

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Delegates attending conventions dates back all the way to the founding of our country.  George Washington was elected to preside over the Constitutional Convention held in 1787.  The use of delegates has continued throughout the history of the United States.  In Texas, the Republican and Democrat parties select delegates to attend county and state conventions.   Bondsmen have been serving as delegates to State conventions for years; that’s right! Democrats and Republicans.  Bondsmen like you have gotten involved and fought “Bail Reform” within the political parties.   Every two years both political parties host state conventions to debate and decide the party business and direction for the next two years.  This typically consists of electing party officers, electing delegates to their national convention, adopting a state party platform or published list of beliefs, and adopting a list of legislative priorities, that they wish to see the governor and legislature take action on in the n

Surrendering to Vigilante Justice: Bail Reform, The War on Accountability

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by Ken W. Good The concept of accountability has been ingrained into almost every part of our society.  The examples are numerous -- a child may be put into time-out for misbehaving, a student sent to the principal for a violation of rules, and a driver may be given a ticket as a consequence of speeding.   Accountability has deep roots across the globe.  Leading the successful campaign for India's independence from Britain, Mahatma Gandhi inspired movements for civil rights and freedom across the world, once saying "It is wrong and immoral to seek to escape the consequences of one's acts."  In the history of much of the world, accountability has been a central tenet.  But this fundamental precept is changing. Sadly, a war is underway against accountability in society.  The erosion of this concept can be observed in many areas of day-to-day life, such as in our colleges and universities.  As an example, statistics from the University of North Carolina system between fa

Helping Clients Find Their Way H.O.M.E.

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Shelly Fernandez is getting a second chance.  A second chance to get her life on track.  A second chance to become a productive member of her community and a second chance to raise her two children.  Shelly was placed in a special program called H.O.M.E. The program provided her with the much-needed safety and security she was longing for.  It also provided her with housing, food, and employment opportunities. After 10 months, Shelly is a new person.  She is gainfully employed, she has proper childcare for her children, and most importantly she has a place to call home.   And if you ask Shelly, she attributes all these things to one person…Shanette Mitchell.  Ten months ago, Shanette never knew Shelly or her children.   Shanette never knew anything about Shelly’s past.   But today, they are good friends.   Shelly goes so far as to describe Shanette as not only a godsend but more importantly, someone whom she aspires to be.     She says, because of Shanette, she not only has her child

Editorial: Bail Reform Efforts Need Fine Tuning to Address Repeat Offenders

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Las Vegas Review-Journal (June 28, 2020). Even the best ideas can be destructive when they’re taken too far. Consider bail reform. Around the country, there’s been a sustained and surprisingly successful push to change the cash bail system. There is an inevitable delay between an arrest and a trial. Judges have discretion, based on the nature of the crime and other circumstances, to allow the accused to remain free pending trial. But if defendants are deemed dangerous or flight risks, a judge may order them held until the conclusion of the legal proceedings. Bail has long been the compromise option. A defendant can leave jail but has to post bail. If a defendant returns at the assigned time, he gets his money back. If he doesn’t, he loses it. A bail bondsman serves as a middleman for those who can’t afford the full bail amount. The trade-off for not having to come up with the full amount is that the accused doesn’t get back the small portion of the bond he covers through the bail bonds

Texas Motor Vehicle Fuel Tax Collections Down 83 Percent in May

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In April, the Texas Comptroller’s Office announced a drastic — but unsurprising — 9.3 percent drop in sales tax revenues from April 2019. At the time, that was the sharpest drop since January 2010. In April, the total tax collections dropped even more drastically at 22 percent from the previous year and the total net revenue was down 20 percent. May quickly painted an even worse picture. Sales taxes collected were down almost 15 percent, total tax collections down over 50 percent, and net revenue down 49 percent. Again, this is largely based on April transactions. Motor vehicle fuel tax collections were down 39 and 83 percent in April and May, respectively. This trickled down to the oil production tax as well, which fell 75 percent in May. Oil demand has dropped significantly as demand for ground and air travel nearly evaporated. This, especially, will affect Texas’ Rainy Day Fund as it is significantly financed by excise taxes.  Some localities have decided to explore raising property

Dallas County Administrative Judge Asks Texas Governor to Issue New Shelter-In-Place Mandate

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In a letter on Saturday, Dallas County Judge Clay Jenkins asked Gov. Greg Abbott to enact a statewide shelter-in-place order as the county continues to see increasing numbers of reported COVID-19 cases. Jenkins presented a variety of policies he believes would mitigate the spread of the coronavirus and asked Abbott to either implement the suggestions or allow local authorities to enact them. “I made my peace early on during this crisis to always follow the science and our public health experts. I recommend that you enact these requirements statewide, or at the very least, regionally,” Jenkins said.  “If not, please rescind your prior order restricting local control and allow Dallas County to implement the above recommendations in an effort to slow the spread of the rampant and devastating COVID-19 virus.” Among the county judge’s recommendations were mandatory “universal masking/physical distancing that is enforced with fines statewide or at least regionally,” a ban on gatherings of mo

90210 Police Arrest 24 Protestors After Ignoring Repeated Orders to Leave

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Activists are calling for the release of nearly two dozen protesters who were arrested on charges of unlawful assembly in Beverly Hills, saying holding them until they could each post $5,000 bail was excessive and heightens the risk of getting sick amid the coronavirus pandemic. Police confirmed 23 protesters were arrested Friday night after they ignored repeated orders to leave a neighborhood. In addition, one person was arrested on suspicion of arson after a fire was set during the largely peaceful protest, Sgt. Thomas West said. The protesters remained in custody Saturday morning and were being processed, West said. Bail was set at $5,000 — an amount that critics said was excessive. During protests calling for criminal justice reform in the wake of George Floyd’s killing, protesters who were arrested in and around Los Angeles over unlawful assembly, breaking curfew orders and other minor violations were mostly cited, released and given an order to appear in court. Beverly Hills, kno

Update- Attorneys Charged with Molotov Cocktail Attack on NYPD Granted Bail

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Two attorneys charged with firebombing a police vehicle amid the unrest convulsing New York City were granted bail Monday, while federal prosecutors said the pair might “return to rioting.” “One night of behavior is not a basis on which to reject somebody’s ability to make rational decisions,” U.S. Magistrate Judge Steven Gold said. The alleged firebombing took place outside the 88th Precinct house in Fort Greene. As police and protesters faced off in downtown Brooklyn, surveillance cameras recorded Rahman hurling what prosecutors described as a Molotov cocktail into a police vehicle, setting fire to its console, near an NYPD station house. Officers arrested the attorneys a short time later and found a lighter, a Bud Light beer bottle filled with toilet paper and a gasoline tank in the back of their minivan, prosecutors said. The attorneys would face 5 to 20 years in federal prison if convicted. Prosecutors appealed the judge’s order releasing the attorneys on $250,000 bail each. U.S.

Turning Cities Over to Gangs- Baltimore Dismisses Over 600 Cases, Will No Longer Prosecute Long List of Crimes Including Drug Possession

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Marilyn Mosby, the Baltimore State Attorney best known for prosecuting six officers she believed was at fault for the in-custody death of Freddie Gray, a mission in which she miserably failed, is turning heads once again.  Mosby has determined that certain offenses will no longer be prosecuted by her office, and as a result, tossed out almost six hundred criminal arrest warrants.  Criminal cases in which she now refuses to prosecute include drug possession, paraphernalia possession, prostitution, trespassing, minor traffic offenses, open container of alcohol, rogue and vagabond, and urinating/defecating in public.  Mosby, besides failing to file criminal charges on those being arrested, also took it upon herself to file paperwork in front of a judge to dismiss all charges against those not taken into custody at the time of her decision.  “COVID-19 in jails is still a major public health threat, and we want to slow the number of people entering the criminal justice system. As prosecutor

Harris County Commissioner Court Leader in Self-Quarantine

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Harris County Judge Lina Hidalgo says she's in self-quarantine after a member of her office tested positive for COVID-19. According to a statement from Hidalgo issued on Sunday, she was potentially exposed to the virus on Monday, June 22. The staff member's positive test results were confirmed over the weekend, and that person is currently self-isolating, according to Hidalgo. The judge and other staff who were potentially exposed will be tested for COVID-19 and will all self-quarantine for 14 days. According to the statement, Hidalgo has not shown any symptoms. To see more CLICK HERE .

"Who You Going to Call?" "I Ain't Seen No 'Cops'!"

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Powerlingblog Commentary- The city council has taken up the charge to abolish/defund the police. The Minneapolis city charter actually requires the council to fund a police department at something approaching its current size. The council has thus undertaken the process necessary to amend the charter. Last week the council voted unanimously to advance a proposal that would substitute a new Department of Community Safety and Violence Prevention for the police department. I have embedded the text of the ordinance adopted with the proposed charter. The charter amendment would have to be placed before the voters for adoption in order to become law The Star Tribune story on the proposed amendment by Liz Navarati is vague on the text of the charter amendment. Navarati’s story includes a video of Mayor Frey’s criticism of the proposed amendment. It would be going too far to say that the boy mayor is the adult in the room, but at some level he is in touch with the reality principle. Steve Karn

The Definition of Anarchy- St. Louis Couple Forced to Defend Own Property With Guns

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A couple in St. Louis defend their home with a firearm after protesters enter their neighborhood pic.twitter.com/idmZO0nIpS — Daily Caller (@DailyCaller) June 29, 2020 Other tweets maintain that further context shows that the protesters were trespassing on a private street when the St. Louis couple pulled out their guns to defend their home. To see more CLICK HERE . Follow up story-  The St. Louis lawyers who pulled weapons on protesters marching past their home are being investigated for possible criminal charges  CLICK HERE . Additional Update- Tucker Carlson Interview CLICK HERE .

NY Post Commentary- De Blasio's Performance Grows Worse by the Day; Making NYC Unlivable

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The problems are many, but the linchpin is Mayor Bill de Blasio, whose performance grows worse by the day. There is nothing endearing about his act, only a long list of examples of how little he cares. And how little he does. New York has had its share of corrupt and incompetent mayors, but never has it had one who is both of those and also a lazy bum. With restaurants wanting to know the rules for reopening, de Blasio diddled until the last minute. Their survival was at stake, but he couldn’t be bothered. What’s the plan for schools in the fall? Good question, but don’t ask the mayor. He hasn’t gotten around to that yet. Besides, the issue only involves a million students, their families, teachers, coaches, principals and administrators. They must wait for the chief political popinjay to bestir himself. Crime is soaring — murder is up 25 percent — and de Blasio responds by vowing to cut the police budget. The aim is not to do more with less. It is to get the cops to do less. This is a