7/25/14 10:05 PM
Today's least competent criminals:
Open-and-shut case: Police easily bust bank robber wearing shirt with his name on it
DENVER, July 25 (UPI) --Colorado man John David
Martinez was booked into Denver jail on robbery charges after allegedly
robbing a bank while wearing a shirt with his name on it.
Oklahoma woman allegedly calls police to complain that her meth was 'laced'
ENID, Okla., July 25 (UPI) --Oklahoma woman Lynette Rae
Sampson allegedly called police in Enid to complain that her meth was
Man accused of calling in phony murder to avoid ticket during traffic stop
WEST MELBOURNE , Fla., July 25 (UPI) --Julius
Lupowitz is facing a third-degree felony charge after he allegedly
called in a phony murder to avoid a speeding ticket during a traffic
Wisconsin man allegedly tells police he robbed bank to avoid going to jail
RICE LAKE, Wis., July 23 (UPI) --Wisconsin man Jesse
Sweeter allegedly told police that he robbed a bank so that he would
have money to pay court fees to avoid going to jail
Mississippi man runs into police academy after traffic stop and gets arrested
BILOXI, Miss., July 22 (UPI) --When he was pulled over
during a traffic stop, Roger Beasley Jr. took off but was arrested after
running into an active police academy training session.
And finally,it is NOT a good idea to burglarize the Arizona home of the recent WWE World Champion wrestler when he's driving up:
"Daniel Bryan may be on the sidelines, but that didn’t prevent him
from being a WWE superstar – superhero? -- this week. The former WWE
champion reportedly prevented
a burglary Monday night in Phoenix. Bryan, who is recuperating from a
neck surgery, was pulling into a carport when he saw the door to his
house was open. Phoenix police reported that two men ran out of the
house and Bryan, real name Brian Danielson, ran down one of them,
22-year-old Cesar Sosa. Sosa and Danielson got into a scrap – not the
best move if you were the alleged burglar – and the WWE star detained
him until police arrived..."
7/23/14 9:14 PM
Some companies make it very clear they don't value customers. In the news, three that don't want your business:
Car dealership gives international college student disputed refund in loose change
Fla., July 23 (UPI) --International college student Irena Mujakovic was
seeking a $400 refund from Holiday Motors, and she received a portion
of the refund in loose change...After she filed a complaint with the
DMV's district office; the dealership was told to give Mujakovic a
refund. Holiday Motors complied with the letter of the law, if not the
spirit. When Mujakovic went to get her money, she was handed two bags
containing mostly pennies and some bills.
Minnesota man with kids allegedly tossed from Southwest Airlines flight for critical tweets
MINNEAPOLIS, July 23 (UPI) --
Minnesota man claims that a critical tweet got him and his two kids
booted off a Southwest Airlines flight from Denver to Minneapolis on
Sunday.Duff Watson is an "A-List" passenger, but when he attempted to
priority board with his two children, the gate agent wouldn't let him.He
told the agent that he would be "sure to tweet about it," and then he
did.When the agent read what he wrote, she had Watson and his children
removed from the plane because she felt "threatened" by what he had
tweeted."There was no use of profanity, there were no threats made.
There was nothing other than, you know, a terse exchange between a
customer service agent and a customer," Watson told WCCO
. "She said, 'You can't board the plane unless you delete that tweet.'"He deleted the tweet and they were allowed back on.
And then there is Comcast:
If there’s one guy in the world who knows whether or not he wants to
cancel his Comcast service, it’s Ryan Block. The former head of Engadget,
founder of GDGT, and now product dude at AOL, Block probably knows
exactly why he wants to cancel his Comcast service and, presumably, he’s
not going to tell you or a Comcast service rep who refuses to take “No” for an answer. But when he called to cancel his service over the phone and prepare
the return of his cable card, the rep refused in the worst way possible.
The pair entered into a Kafka-esque conversation where the only answer
to any question asked would have been total submission to the Comcast
Cause. The call, which already went on for ten minutes by the time Block
decided to record it, is an example of a rep sticking to his script and
a customer with the patience of Job (and an understanding of Internet
virality) putting up with aural torture in order to show the world how
crazy Comcast is. Listen to the AMAZING phone call at http://techcrunch.com/2014/07/15/tech-blogger-tries-to-cancel-comcast-service-hilarity-ensues/ .
7/11/14 6:54 AM
Dying will not help you avoid military service.
Computer bug sends draft notices to 14000 centenarians
Thousands of United States centenarians have accidentally been called up to fight for their country, after a computer glitch resulted in draft notices being sent to more than 14,000 Pennsylvania men born between 1893 and 1897.
6/28/14 4:23 PM
This is frankly an appalling abuse by Facebook of its members, and indefensible:
An appalling misuse and abuse of customers:
Facebook is the best human research lab ever. There's no need to get experiment participants to sign pesky consent forms as they've already agreed to the site's data use policy. recent study shows Facebook playing a whole new level of mind gamery with its
users. As first noted by Animal New York
, Facebook’s data scientists manipulated the News Feeds of 689,003 users, removing either all of the positive posts or all of the negative posts to see how it affected their moods. If there was a week in January 2012 where you were only seeing photos of dead dogs or incredibly cute babies, you may have been part of the study. Now that the experiment is public, people’s mood about the study itself would best be described as “disturbed.” The researchers, led by data scientist Adam Kramer
, found that emotions were contagious. “When positive expressions were reduced, people produced fewer positive posts and more negative posts; when negative expressions were reduced, the opposite pattern occurred,” according to the paper
published by the Facebook research team in the PNAS...So is it okay for Facebook to play mind games with us for science? It’s a cool finding but manipulating unknowing users’ emotional states to get there puts Facebook’s big toe on that creepy line. Facebook’s data use policy
— that I’m sure you’ve all read — says Facebookers’ information will be used “for internal operations, including troubleshooting, data analysis, testing, research
and service improvement,” making all users potential experiment subjects. And users know that Facebook’s mysterious algorithms control what they see in their News Feed. But it may come as a surprise to users to see those two things combined like this. When universities conduct studies on people, they have to run them by an ethics board
first to get approval — ethics boards that were created because scientists were getting too creepy in their experiments, getting subjects to think they were shocking someone to death
in order to study obedience and letting men live with syphilis
for study purposes. A 2012 profile of the Facebook data team noted
, “ Unlike academic social scientists, Facebook’s employees have a short path from an idea to an experiment on hundreds of millions of people...”
Read the full sickening story at:
6/12/14 10:07 PM
Epic rant in Broward Bond Court leads Florida judge to hand down year in jail
FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla., June 12 (UPI) --Words may not be able to break bones, but they can get you tossed in jail.During an appearance in Broward Bond Court on Thursday, a domestic violence suspect received nearly a year in jail for ranting at a judge after he was denied pre-trial release from jail.Christopher Colon was sentenced to 364 days in jail after Judge John "Jay" Hurley declared him in contempt of court. Hurley denied the 27-year-old pre-trial release on a domestic battery charge and that was when the fun began.Colon told the judge, "Then I'll see you guys again with a lawyer and a lawsuit too," and walked away.The judge instructed Colon to come back and he did -- with a vengeance."And you can go [expletive] yourself too," Colon said. He then repeated that everyone could "suck his [expletive]" a number of times.Colon was then told that he was going to be held in contempt of court if he kept it up."I don't give a [expletive]. Go ahead, I have lawyers," Colon responded. He then started railing about "pussy-ass crackers" trying to put away African-Americans and Hispanics.Colon went on to mention Hitler and laughed as Hurley calmly told him he'd basically be spending the next year in jail. " http://www.upi.com/Odd_News/2014/06/12/Epic-rant-in-Broward-Bond-Court-leads-Florida-judge-to-hand-down-year-in-jail/5731402604328
5/27/14 8:22 PM
It's hard to say which part of this story makes Mississippi look worst. Could it be the fact that not only does Mississippi not require judges to pass law school, but they don't even go to college? Could it be that after a Mississippi Judge moonlighting as a fake cop (security guard at a flea market) shoved an austistic black youn man to the ground, in front of lots of witnesses, and then called him the "N" word we won;t post here? Could it be that no one has yet arrested this judge, and no one has issued an emergency order removing him from the bench?
- ?May 25, 2014?: ...
Weisenberger, who is white, is a former law enforcement officer who was elected as a Justice
— a position that in Mississippi
does not require more than a high school diploma and six hours of training per year. On May 8, he was witnessed by two vendors, at the Canton Flea Market slapping a young black
man on the back of the head and saying “run *n-word*, run.” The two witnesses, sisters Cathy Hendrix and Tammy Westbrook, from Tuscaloosa, Alabama, were appalled by the attack...
From the Jackson MS Clarion-Ledger:
"... the NAACP plans to file complaints with the Judicial Performance Commission, the state attorney general's Vulnerable Adult Unit and the Justice Department. Under Mississippi law, the only requirement to be elected a Justice Court judge is a high school diploma. After taking office, the judges are required to take up to six hours of training a year. A 2007 legislative task force concluded that Justice Court judges needed higher degrees, preferably law degrees." http://www.clarionledger.com/story/news/2014/05/23/madison-county-judge-accused-racial-abuse/9518717/
A note: my state is Georgia. Georgia recently changed the law so new municipal judges have to be attorneys (most cities already did that but a few did not, and those handful were grandfathered, but must do 12 hours a year of school). Some rural Georgia magistrates and probate court judges also are non-lawyers, but this is gradually being diminished by statute (and has ended in urban areas), and they also have to do continuing education. Georgia changed laws so all probate judges in counties over 96,000 must be lawyers with 7 years experience. All state, superior, juvenile and appellate judges must be lawyers.
The following states still have a number of non-attorney judges: Arizona, Delaware, Georgia, Louisiana, Mississippi, Montana, Nevada, New York, Oregon, Texas, and Utah.
To somewhat compensate for the problem of the small remaining number of non-lawyer magistrates in Georgia, new non-attorney Magistrates must attend two, 40-hour certification courses within 24 months of taking office. All other Magistrates must earn 12 MCJE hours a year.
5/23/14 8:13 PM
The headline says it all - why would anyone concerned with safety or quality should ever buy a GM car: The headline: "GM Has Recalled More Vehicles In 2014 Than It Sold In 5 Years". The below story was written after 28 GM recalls this year (as of today it is now 30).
The story: "General Motors has recalled nearly 13.8 million vehicles in the U.S. this year. That's a lot, obviously. For example, it blows past GM's previous annual recall record of 10.75 million vehicles, set in 2004. And it means GM is responsible for more than half of the total number of vehicles recalled in the U.S. so far this year. But if you're looking for one statistic that really drives home just how cataclysmic the whole episode has been for GM, it's this one: In just this year alone, GM has recalled more vehicles in the U.S. than it sold between 2009 and 2013. And it's only May." http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/05/21/gm-recall-more-than-sold_n_5367478.html
Close to 4 decades ago I owned my only GM car, a complete lemon that they refused to fix (it had three blown engines in 28,000 miles and was finally towed as scrap at that point) and vowed to never deal with a company that built such bad cars and refused to help owners. I am now happily in a multiple Hyundai family, with great cars that have no problems and were built by Americans in Alabama. I am sad that so many lives have been lost and people injured by a company which then, and ever since, has had a history of problem vehicles and refusing to make things right. But, maybe now, many more people will feel as I do - that with so many good car companies out there (and I love my Hyundai), consumers have far better choices.
5/22/14 7:13 AM
Ebay allowed (just like Target before them), through inadequate security, a huge theft of all its member's personal information (and then tried to cover it up until the media attention got to be too extensive). Just like Target fired its CEO, eBay needs to fire, today, it's CEO. There was NO excuse for his delay, and frankly we need better laws so CEO coverups like this lead to major jail time. Companies need to learn to use better security and when things go awry, to notify customers quickly. It should be noted that to date eBay has refused to provide free credit monitoring, which should already have been offered.
Here's the story:
You can't have failed to notice by now that eBay has had a bit of a problem relating to leaked user data. The mainstream media was all over the story yesterday -- you know things are bad when the TV news takes notice of IT matters...According to a post on eBay's corporate pages
, "The database, which was compromised between late February and early March, included eBay customers' name, encrypted password, email address, physical address, phone number and date of birth. However, the database did not contain financial information or other confidential personal information". This in itself is bad enough as it means hackers could have been busy on decrypting passwords for weeks. What makes it worse though is the way eBay has handled the problem. Hints that something was wrong started to appear yesterday morning -- early afternoon here in the UK -- when a post appeared on the PayPal Forward
blog. This disappeared again fairly quickly, leading industry watchers to believe it may have been posted in error as part of test of security procedures. A couple of hours later though it was back for good, along with the eBay corporate post. That sparked the interest of the media but at this point the company wasn't doing anything to alert its 128 million users. As of 4pm EDT yesterday there was no warning on the eBay homepage, there were no emails to customers, there was no forced password reset when you logged in. There was information on the site but you had to click through several links in order to find it. Today it seems eBay is finally starting to get its act together. There's now a prominent banner on the site, click it and you're taken to a message from Devin Wenig, President, eBay Marketplaces. This advises that next time you visit the site you should, "Take a moment to change your password."
5/17/14 2:35 PM
Led Zeppelin is Officially Getting Sued Over 'Stairway to Heaven'
100.7 WZLX Classic Rock
“Stairway to Heaven” has a staple of rock radio for decades, and still gets regular airplay here at WZLX and all over the world. It’s arguably the biggest rock song in history. But now, just before the song gets a new reissue, the band that for years has accused Led Zeppelin of stealing part of the song from them is finally lawyering up. A detailed new report from Businessweek says the now-defunct California-based band Spirit is working with a team of lawyers to build a case against Led Zeppelin and take them to court over ‘Stairway’, saying it ripped its iconic opening riff from a song they wrote back in 1968 called “Taurus”.
Compare the "original":
As you will hear at 0:44 (and for about the 40 seconds after that), Spirit may have a strong case for copyright infringement:
4/27/14 9:41 PM
Craigslist, which knowingly allows thousands of prostitution ads, and is home to more scams than any other website in America, and is fine
with an Atlanta legal services area where one of the recent ads had a photo of
an uncovered penis (yes - the LEGAL services area - and another where a person offered to sniff someone's smelly
socks), and which allows illegal credit repair scams and posts promoting the
illegal practice of law without a license, has recently began mass-deletion of
ads by real lawyers (with no explanation or apology).
I thought I'd share two of my ads that they found highly objectionable (the
same people who think prostitution ads are fine). Let me know if you find these
ads worthy of a ban, and yes, they've been banned. And feel free to comment on
whether you think Craigslist's owner ought to face prosecution for allowing all
the prostitution ads.
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