Oppressed landlords are finally taking a stand against discrimination

David Edenblock is trying to form a landlord liberation front (hey, I oughta register that domain!). His mission: “To change legislation in order to finally give property owners and managers the rights we deserve!”

Well, goody for him. If you’d like to join up, drop a note to change@landlordmovement.com


[7/26/2014 update: The landlordmovement.com domain has been abandoned. Presumably the landlords have given up on their efforts to portray themselves as victims and gone back to harassing tenants.]

GLAAD invites Fox News anchors to big event; backtracks when they realize that Fox News isn’t gay-friendly

Fox Newspeople Kimberly Guilfoyle and Jamie Colby were invited to the GLAAD Media Awards but slammed when they attended:

Spokesman Rich Ferraro told Media Matters, “If Kimberly and Jamie expect to attend future GLAAD events, they will first need to sit down with us to discuss Fox News’ embarrassing, biased and misinformed coverage of LGBT issues. The invitation is open. Fox News’s track record on LGBT issues is abysmal, and it makes no sense to me why any LGBT people or allies would want to be a part of that.”

When asked later about the screw-up, Ferraro said, “We didn’t realize they were from that Fox News.”

GLAAD Objects To Fox News Hosts Attending Its Events.

Mayor Bloomberg in early April Fools gag predicts that one day, surveillance cameras and even drones will be watching nearly everyone in New York

With tongue — presumably — planted firmly in his cheek, Mayor Bloomberg said Friday it will soon be impossible to escape the eye of Big Brother in the city.

“You wait, in five years, the technology is getting better, they’ll [sic!] be cameras every place,” Bloomberg said during his weekly radio appearance. “Get used to it — whether you like it or not.”…

via Brave New World: Mayor Bloomberg predicts that one day, surveillance cameras and even drones will be watching nearly everyone in New York – NY Daily News.

3 dead in Marine base shooting; Wayne LaPierre puzzled

When three people died in a shooting and police standoff at the Quantico Marine barracks in Virginia, Wayne LaPierre, executive vice-president of the NRA, was overheard exclaiming, “Those guys were armed. Why the hell didn’t they defend themselves?”

3 dead, including suspect, in Marine base shooting – NYPOST.com.

Few Americans Agree on Where to Cut the Budget

“Polls repeatedly show that while Americans want to cut government spending in the abstract, they oppose nearly all the specific cuts needed to actually balance the budget. . . . If the months of Washington gridlock were not evidence enough, the survey respondents’ failure to agree on what should be cut indicates that balancing the federal budget will be difficult. But the poll shows that few Americans are prepared to make those choices.”

via ‘Wasteful Spending’ Poll: Few Agree On What Government Waste Is, Most Want To Cut It.

Make Lawmakers Wear Logos Of Financial Backers On Clothing, Like In NASCAR

This comes from a petition on the White House4 website:

“Since most politicians’ campaigns are largely funded by wealthy companies and individuals, it would give voters a better sense of who the candidate they are voting for is actually representing if the company’s logo, or individual’s name, was prominently displayed upon the candidate’s clothing at all public appearances and campaign events.”

Great idea — but the logo size should be proportional to the amount of the contribution. For example, all the New York City mayoral hopefuls are taking money from pretty much the same donors, but some are getting more than others. Proportional representation would allow us to see at a glance who’s been most successful at separating the fat cats from their lucre.

via White House Petition: Make Lawmakers Wear Logos Of Financial Backers On Clothing, Like In NASCAR.

What’s the matter with kids today?

Two recent articles say this about students . . .

‘A culture of “teaching to the test” fostered by the No Child Left Behind law may be creating a generation of law students who lack skills for critical thinking and good writing, according to University of Minnesota law professor Michele Goodwin.’

Most new graduates lack even the basic skills needed for the workplace, complain major employers. More than two-thirds of bosses said they cannot handle customers while half said they cannot operate independently. Half of companies said university leavers struggle with basic English and nearly two-fifths claim they  cannot do simple maths. [British usage]

But the problem is not  limited to today’s students, it also afflicts lawyers in practice for many years. Bryan Garner writes . . .

For many years in lectures, I’ve likened practicing lawyers, when it comes to writing, to 23-handicap golfers who believe that they’re equal to the touring professionals. For those not golfers, this would mean that pretty poor golfers—those who habitually shoot in the mid-90s but benefit from the big handicap—somehow fool themselves into believing that they really are shooting in the mid-60s, and that they’re about as good as it gets. I’ve been trying, in other words, to say that lawyers on the whole don’t write well and have no clue that they don’t write well.’

But the problem goes back further than that. Your esteemed Bitemaster edited a newsletter many years ago, whose writers were all baby boomers, and many of them couldn’t write worth a damn. If you do the math, you’ll find that today’s law school deans are often a full generation younger than those boomers.

And back in 1955, Rudolf Flesch published Why Johnny Can’t Read, an indictment of the methods used to teach reading in American schools. The kids who Flesch thought couldn’t read were probably born in the early 1940s.

When discussing this post with my colleague, Dr. H. O. Hell, he related a story told by George Orwell. Orwell said that he had gone to a prestigious English boarding school (presumably Eton) where they “taught to the test” so that the students would get into Oxford and go on to successful careers.

So what’s my point? That everybody complains about education — apparently in every generation — but that few of them have any statistics to measure how we’re doing.

And if you want a laugh, look at the first subhead of this article:

Arizona’s Law Banning Mexican-American Studies Curriculum Is Constitutional

The HuffPo says “A court upheld most provisions of an Arizona state law used to prohibit a controversial Mexican-American Studies curriculum in Tucson on Friday.The ruling dealt a blow to supporters of the suspended classes, who had hoped the courts would overturn a 2010 law championed by Arizona conservatives determined to shut down the unconventional courses.”

For more nuanced coverage of the controversy, see our post from January.

via Arizona’s Law Banning Mexican-American Studies Curriculum Is Constitutional, Judge Rules.

Pro-gun forces push back

In a doomed effort to counter possible federal gun laws, the Idaho House of Representatives has approved a measure that would make it a crime for state and local police to enforce new federal firearms restrictions. Under the bill, state or local officials who help enforce any new federal gun limits could face up to a year in prison and a maximum fine of $1,000.

Maybe Obama — if he has any guts — will send in the Screaming Eagles, like Eisenhower did.

via Idaho Gun Bill: State Lawmakers Pass Measure To Challenge Federal Gun Control Proposals.