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Archive for December, 2009

Why would a utility company need my DOB and SSN to start service at an apartment rental that is owned by someone else? If I default, won’t they just revert billing to the owner?

(edit 10 minutes later) or, more to the point: Why should they care who I am as long as I pay the bills on time? Is the electric company refusing service to suspected terrorists?

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So of course, if you have kids, the only logical thing to do is to pay someone else $15/month to stalk them online for you.

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I’m kind of shocked that the R-G folks couldn’t come up with anything more salacious in this article about Bill Sizemore’s tax fraud woes:

A judge agreed Monday to delay conservative activist Bill Sizemore’s arraignment, giving the longtime foe of public employees three more weeks to decide whether to accept taxpayer-funded legal defense against criminal charges of tax evasion.

Sizemore said he intends to represent himself against the charge of evading state taxes in 2006, 2007 and 2008. But he said he and his wife, Cindy Sizemore, may elect to have a court-appointed public defender represent her. Both were rescheduled to be arraigned Dec. 29 in Marion County Circuit Court.

Sizemore filed as a Republican candidate for governor a few days before Oregon Attorney General John Kroger announced Sizemore’s grand-jury indictment. With the primary slated for May 20, Sizemore said he and his wife plan to plead not guilty and to seek an expedited trial.

“I think the voters of Oregon — especially the Republican voters in the primary — have a right to know whether this guy who is asking for their vote is going to be a convicted felon or whether he is just a victim of political persecution,” he said.

This is a little bit of inside-Oregon-baseball, but bear with me. In Oregon, it’s relatively easy to get new laws and constitutional amendments added to the popular ballot. you only need about 110,000 signatures to propose a constitutional amendment, and only about 50,000 to put up a referendum for popular vote. Since Oregon has roughly two million registered voters, the bar is actually pretty low. Now, anyone who has paid attention to politics in Oregon for the last few years will know that Sizemore is notorious for his zealous exercise of the Oregon ballot initiative process. Most of the proposals he drafts or promotes are anti-tax, anti-regulation, and anti-government; he is accorded credit for measure 7 and measure 37, which imposed takings-clause just compensation requirements on regulatory decisions affecting land-use.

So here’s why this is amusing- Sizemore is purportedly one of those Norquistian anti-tax, anti-government, libertarian ubermensch politicos, who has no personal need for government services and no use for the losers and degenerates who would derive benefits from them.

But here he is, dragged into court because he [allegedly] set up a sham charity to run his ballot initiative schemes and fund his own living expenses, and he didn’t pay his income taxes. And I’ll say this next part very slowly: he’s asking for extra time… so that he can decide… if he’s going to accept court-appointed legal representation… to defend him from charges of tax evasion… which defense will be paid for by state tax funds… which is what he’s accused of not paying.

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Because when you’re working with two other guys on a robbery, and your would-be victim shoots your friends, you’re gonna get charged with their murder:

Although Frank Castro, who turns 18 on Tuesday, did not shoot the teens, he still can be charged with their murders, officials say.

“If you are a member of the conspiracy, you are responsible for whatever happens as a result of that conspiracy,” San Marcos Police Chief Howard Williams said Monday. “Even if you didn’t intend to hurt anybody, you’re still responsible.”

I’m actually not sure that’s a correct statement of the outcome. Many (if not most) felony-murder rules rule out liability for the deaths of the co-conspirators. If one of your buddies shoots a bystander and you’re driving the getaway car, sure, you can be charged with the murder… but on these facts, I’d be inclined to believe that Police Chief Williams is mistaken about the application of the felony murder rule.

Maybe if I get a minute tonight I’ll look up the actual statute and update this post.

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