Do DC’s speed cameras count as extortion? As I’ve said before, if they ever want to get serious about speeders, they simply put cameras everywhere. It won’t be long before cars come equipped with GPS sensors that prevent you from unconsciously speeding and, because they know they will get caught, people will stop speeding. Of course, that creates a revenue problem.

Seven reason computer glitches are never going away. There’s actually a tidbit in there that relates to a commensation I had with Brandon Berg about Taiwan.

Some interesting tidbits about men and women and love.

A really interesting look at the short-term and long-term effects of marijuana from Wired.

This Washington Post article on Texas’ fast-track from the classroom to the courtroom is disturbing. At the same time, the deleterious effect that disruptions and the chaotic atmosphere can prevent almost everybody from learning. I think that part of the issue here is that the schools themselves are prevented from appropriate discipline, and so they turn to the courts.

Catherine Hakim on erotic capital.

I’m pretty sure I have a Linkluster item where I wrote on this previously, but stories like this make me think of the lemonade stands busted by health or permit inspectors. It’s antithetical to who we are. It’s a video about Los Angeles County’s attempts to chase people out of their dilapidated homes. Which sounds reasonable, until you realize how far away from everybody they are. I honestly didn’t know that such places existed in Los Angeles County.

Is productivity killing our economy?


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3 Responses to Linkluster Sittinn Uku

  1. Mike Hunt says:

    Seven reason computer glitches are never going away.

    As the article says, diversity is a weakness.

    This Washington Post article on Texas’ fast-track from the classroom to the courtroom is disturbing.

    School property isn’t international waters. If it is illegal outside of school, it is illegal inside of school. Maybe kids will stop behaving like shitheads if there is a monetary penalty involved. Of course, this should only apply to things that are actually illegal, not for a violation of general school rules. But fistfights are only OK in an actual boxing ring.

    Is productivity killing our economy?

    Yes. There are no longer enough jobs to go around, sadly. The 40 hour workweek should be enforced for white collar employees too. There is no special reason for lawyers or IBankers to work 80 hours per week, except to exclude others.

  2. Burt Likko says:

    The nuisance abatement team video hits close to home — literally. Here’s Burt Likko tellin’ it like it is.

    The areas in question where this activity is going on is a little bit more densely populated than the video makes it seem. The area is dominated by two relatively large cities: Palmdale has a population of about 153,000; Lancaster has a population of 157,000; the general area has a population of 484,000. Nearly all of the 100,000 north county residents live in one of three clusters of development known as Lake Los Angeles, Littlerock, and Acton, which is where nearly all the enforcement takes place.

    The amount of residential areas where the County can possibly do this sort of thing is actually quite small; most of the parts of the county which are geographically appropriate for residential development is organized into cities which do not do this.

    The laws the County inspectors are enforcing are not new, although they are being enforced with new levels of vigor over the past several years. There is a grant that is funding the activity of a district attorney and a squad of enforcers; I have met with these people including the prosecutor named in the video to try to steer them away from filing criminal charges against various of my clients. They do insist that buildings that are out of code be brought up to code and that land use that varies from zoning be terminated, but they are willing to give reasonable amounts of time and take the financial resources of the property owners into account when doing it. There is a little bit of “respect our authority” going on, but less than you would get from a traffic cop with a chip on his shoulder.

    I do not see any sinister conspiracy theory to vacate land so as to make condemnation for highway or rail projects more affordable. Those projects have been on the books since I was a little boy and both the airport and the L.A.-Vegas high speed rail connection are chimeras that will never actually happen. What is going on (IMO) is that building inspectors no longer have a lot of new construction to look at, but the County cannot let them go both because they have a reservoir of skills and training, and because they are civil service employees whom it would be difficult to fire or lay off. So they must be used in some sort of productive fashion. When the economy picks up and new building happens again, these people will go back to work doing code enforcement for new houses.

    Supervisor Antonovich, like most mandarins, does not enjoy a reputation for taking criticism well. The climactic scene in the video where the Reason reporter uses public comment to no avail is pretty typical not only of him but of all five Supervisors, who greatly enjoy quietly exercising more power over more people than a typical U.S. Congressman does.

  3. trumwill says:

    School property isn’t international waters. If it is illegal outside of school, it is illegal inside of school. Maybe kids will stop behaving like shitheads if there is a monetary penalty involved. Of course, this should only apply to things that are actually illegal, not for a violation of general school rules. But fistfights are only OK in an actual boxing ring.

    And on the Jerry Springer show…

    Meh. I get what you’re saying, but it still strikes me as the sort of thing that does more longterm harm than good.

    There is no special reason for lawyers or IBankers to work 80 hours per week, except to exclude others.

    I don’t really know how IBanking works. There may be an argument in there about how two people are actually less effective than one. Such perspective is common in the medical community. Come to think of it, I don’t buy it in the medical community, either.

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