From the WaPo comes more red light camera nonsense:
Mats Järlström is, by all accounts, an engineer. He graduated from engineering school in Sweden, served as an airplane-camera mechanic in the Swedish Air Force and worked in research and development at an electronics manufacturer. For the past 20 years, he has earned a living designing and repairing audio equipment.
He is not, however, a “licensed professional” in the state of Oregon, where he put down roots in the early 1990s. So when Järlström did his own study of the timing mechanisms in the state’s red-light cameras and found them flawed, Oregon officials hit him with a $500 fine for “unlicensed practice of engineering.”
Järlström was inspired by the $150 ticket his wife got in the mail in May after driving through an intersection with a red-light camera in Beaverton, Ore. His research showed that the mathematical formula used in the timing of yellow lights was outdated and unfair to drivers.
When he presented his findings to state officials and local media, the Oregon State Board of Examiners for Engineering and Land Surveying tried to silence him. A nearly two-year investigation by the board found he had violated a state law that says only state-licensed engineers can speak publicly about technical matters. Järlström, in turn, filed a federal lawsuit alleging violations of his First Amendment rights.
This week, more than four years after his wife’s ticket, Järlström got some long-awaited relief. On Monday, Oregon’s attorney general conceded that the engineering board had trampled on his free speech rights, the Oregonian reported…
…“Anyone should be able to talk about the traffic signals if they’re too long or too short or anything without being penalized,” Järlström said in an Institute for Justice video earlier this year.
Oregon bought into red light cameras last year at the state level. In additition to ticketing for running red lights, sensors were installed under the pavement at designated locations to capture the rate of speed a car is traveling when it runs a red light.
Baked into the Oregon law is how to protest if “someone else” was running a red light in your car.
And of course there are multiple site showing locations and types of traps.
Jebus H Ke-rist on a Fucking Pogo Stick.
In June, the Fourth Circuit ruled in favor of an employee who objected to having his hand scanned because he said it would brand him with the Mark of the Beast.
The EEOC sued on the employee’s behalf, saying he was entitled to a reasonable accommodation for his belief that the scanning would mark him as a follower of the Antichrist. The employer refused to let him just enter his ID number on a keypad (which apparently doesn’t present the same concern), and actually gave him a letter saying that under its interpretation of Scripture, it would be okay if he scanned his left hand and not his right.
He quit instead. The Fourth Circuit said there was no dispute the employee’s belief was sincere, and no reason not to accommodate it.
What is it with the fucking religious zealots? You don’t ever see any of us Dudeists throwing a tizzy over superstitious bullshit.
Like, dude, the Mark of the Beast is not the issue here!
The AP reports that Jeremy Putnam, 31, was arrested in Winchester, Virginia, and charged with “wearing a mask in public,” a felony in that state.
He was armed with a “sword” in public, which apparently alarmed residents. But they haven’t charged him with that; they’ve charged him with this, a fascinatingly terrible law:
§ 18.2-422. Prohibition of wearing of masks in certain places; exceptions.
It shall be unlawful for any person over 16 years of age to, with the intent to conceal his identity, wear any mask, hood or other device whereby a substantial portion of the face is hidden or covered so as to conceal the identity of the wearer…
…with specific exceptions for “traditional holiday costumes,” protective or medical masks, or ones for a “bona fide theatrical production or masquerade ball.”
Funny how laws intended to do one thing end up doing something else entirely. Virginia’s law, like others passed in the South, was originally aimed at unmasking the KKK. And now it’s being used against (putatively) innocent people who make poor choices in face painting.
The best interpretation of events is that the local gendarmerie recognized a mental health issue when that Glasgow smile was leering in their faces, and detained the individual, if only to refer him to the local nuthatch on a 48-hour observational hold.
On the other hand, given the Federal enactment of the Real ID Act , combined with the FBI’s mandate that there be no smiling (much less Glasgow grins) on any state driver’s license (it fuck’s with the Feeb’s facial reconignition software), and the omniscient air surveillance engendered by Obama’s Drones Over Amerika program, it starting to look like Orwell’s 1984 arrived without anyone noticing.
No worries, though; we can trust the government to do the right thing. And, failing that, there’s always the courts, n’est-ce pas?