HB V

is older than it's ever been and now it's even older

4/09/2001

What price justice?


Well, today draws an end to what I'll call the "Kia clubbing incident". As you may recall, my car was damaged last January by a policeman that I would characterize with a expletive. He wrote a ticket at the time, and since then I've been fighting it. The first time I went to court they offered to let me out of it with $150 fine, pleading guilty to both. No thanks, said I. The second time I went to court I was offered a $100 fine, plus $30 court costs, pleading guilty to one. No thanks, said I. Today I went back, and although I still maintain that I did nothing, I did agree to their latest offer, which is $60 court costs only; no guilty pleas, and I must refrain from disobeying a police officer for six months. Although it really (let me make myself clear, I am VERY ANGRY STILL) ticks me off, I agreed to it because it's consistent with my previously stated philosophy of life, specifically the part about utility and efficiency. Simply put, it was worth $60 to not have to go back to court any more, even though I knew I would probably win. Even though I am the boss, it doesn't mean that I have unlimited time to leave from work, and I had a vision of being gone each day from work the week that the trial was scheduled. Additionally, I don't admit to anything this way, and nothing goes on my record. I almost feel it's a case of legal bribery. Pay the city and the (fraudulent) charge goes away.

The whole episode has left me very ambivalent about the field of law. On the one hand, I know I can do this. On the other hand, I saw the way that the lawyers in the courtroom behave and are perceived, and let's just say they're all assholes. Also, I can't believe I had to appear three times for a traffic ticket -- and I never did argue the merits of the charge! It would take someone with unlimited time to appear plus money for an attorney to fight a ticket successfully, I think, and who can do that? It seems to me that the law, at least as it relates to traffic cases, is less a tool of justice and more a fund collections agency. I'd also like to see a database showing makes of vehicles versus number of times stopped. In all of my court cases, I noticed that most of those with appearrances were, shall I say, minorities and other less advantaged people? So, I'm not exactly keen on the police right now. I think that most officers have carte blanche because the law is not equipped to assume they could do anything wrong. I'm going to post the police report here in the next week, annotated with all of the inaccuracies, and you'll see what I mean.

I still remember how to link stuff

Very interesting political happenings have been going on in Peru. Last year, the president (Alberto Fujimori) ran illegally for a third term, lost but rigged the election so that he won, and then finally fled the country. His intelligence officer fled at around the same time after secret videotapes that showed bribes going down began to surface. Now there's a clean election going on, but the spectre of these tapes still hang over the country -- although few businesspeople have been identified so far, it's known that thousands remain in an archive. For up to date information on this, continue to monitor my favorite Latin blog, GCI275. I've recommended it before, and it's still really good.

Fun with the alphabet! Try out this one (link via Thirteen Labs). Each letter of the alphabet gets a ghoulish drawing. Or if you like Flash, go with Bembo's Zoo, which is an animal for every letter. And I just had to grow up with Sesame Street.

If every other problem at Hanford Nuclear reservation wasn't enough, now they've got radioactive tumbleweeds.

Finally, I haven't had a good LAPI in a while: there's this site that shows women baring their mammaries as they go down the big hill at Splash Mountain in Disneyland. I'm shocked. Really.

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