The High Social Cost of Non–Profit Lawyers

Recently the Washington Pravda caused me to start thinking about lawyers. This is not a favorite topic. I resent the fact lawyers can file a frivolous lawsuit, on behalf of a dishonest client, and be completely untouched by any repercussions. On the contrary, they’re handsomely paid while aiding an injustice.

Meanwhile, the subject of the suit spends thousands fighting a lie. In most instances, even if he wins, he’s ruined financially.

I can count the number of times I’ve hired a lawyer on the fingers of one hand. My first was an incompetent who didn’t understand the specific performance clause of a real estate contract. The second lawyer was hired 14 years later when I bought another house. In between I joined the Monkey Wards legal plan. (“Monkey Wards” is redneck for Montgomery Wards, once a retailing powerhouse rivaling Sears and J. C. Penny, but now existing mainly as a shrunken web retailer and occasional reference in opinion columns.)

The monthly fee entitled members to a one hour consultation on any civil matter, document reviews and stern letters written on my behalf to anyone who dared to cross me in a legal manner of speaking. If a problem needed more than one hour of legal advice, plan members go on the clock at what was guaranteed to be a ‘discounted’ rate.

That’s the entirety of my contact with lawyers as a client. It’s the total contact for most Americans.

What prompted this brief bout of soul–searching was the mention of the “Washington Legal Clinic for the Homeless” in connection with the demolition of a building near Washington, DC’s main homeless shelter.

A staff lawyer for the clinic supported a bill by Councilman Trayon White Sr. — the Maxine Waters–like political wizard, who’s convinced Jews control the weather. Before it was diluted by a thunderstorm, White’s bill would have required the city to put the homeless in new housing before demolition could begin.

My first thought was why on earth would homeless people need an entire legal clinic at their disposal? I could understand being on the lookout for doctors, cooks, haberdashers, carpenters and cobblers, but if I could get by for decades without paying for a lawyer, why do DC’s homeless need one for free?

Well, there’s that crime thing. In Portland, OR the homeless made up half the people arrested in 2017. That’s a lot of lawbreaking for less than one percent of the population. Homeless arrest percentages aren’t reported in DC, but regardless the clinic only handles civil matters, not criminal.

The organization has 15 staff members, 9 of whom are lawyers. Funding comes from donations and grants from the annual United Way charity drive and the Combined Federal Campaign.

So, what do these legal eagles do all day? The homeless, by definition, aren’t buying homes and I doubt their days are a whirlwind of wills and living trusts. That leaves news conferences and social justice, which is very expensive for the public.

The clinic’s existence, funding and social approval is a byproduct of what Russell Moore calls “moralistic sentimentalism.” Meaning someone sees a problem, decides the problem shouldn’t exist and makes it their goal to eliminate the problem. What they never do is ask what caused the problem in the first place. Moralists aren’t big on responsibility.

They feel sorry for the homeless and then use them as a blank slate to demonstrate their commitment to being a good person. Some of the sympathetic go to work for the clinic and others fund to it. With the ironic result that the homeless’ legal team is funded by the same people who can’t afford a lawyer of their own and whose lives are degraded by the clinic’s legal victories.

Don’t like aggressive panhandlers? Thank a lawyer. Don’t like stepping in human waste on the sidewalk? Thank a lawyer. Don’t like derelicts camping in front of your business? Thank a lawyer. Don’t like worrying about stepping on a syringe with your flip–flop? Thank a lawyer. Don’t like being forced to roll up your window when a panhandler confronts you in the left turn lane? Thank a lawyer.

The homeless industrial complex likes to describe the homeless as “outcasts,” like it’s our fault they’re on the street. When the truth is many are on the street because they can’t obey simple rules, can’t resist drugs and alcohol or they are criminals.

Instead of building a society that reinforces cultural norms, organizations like the clinic employ the force of the law to coddle a tiny minority at the expense and safety of the vast majority. The only homeless who truly benefit are the handful that are power–washed before their brief court appearance as a token plaintiff.

The rest continue their downward spiral and the lawyers, as usual, suffer no repercussions.

Advertisements

Cicadas, the Latest Addition to Chinese Cuisine

Business reporter Harrison Jacobs accurately describes China as a “techno–authoritarian” state. Where the Nazis used inaccurate Phrenology and calipers to identify enemies of the state, China uses the latest in technology to constantly identify, monitor, exhort and if need be, round up recalcitrant citizens.

The government’s reach is so pervasive that the fleeting appearance of a Taiwan flag emoji is enough to crash an iPhone the first time it appears. (The second time a functionary of state security will crash the phone with a hammer.)

Dave Granlund, Minnesota

China’s “Sharp Eyes” program will to install a nationwide surveillance camera network extending from public spaces to inside businesses and even private homes. The goal is for everyone to be on TV by 2020.

The accelerated development of facial recognition software makes the program feasible. The program’s rollout doesn’t leave much time for worries about early software bugs connected with real time surveillance of 1.4 billion people. Chinese state security is so efficient that even if the wrong man is identified, they’ll make sure he’s guilty of something.

The data produced by “Sharp Eyes” will be used to build an individual “social credit” score for every Chinese citizen. In the US a low credit score might prevent you from buying a car. In China, a low social credit score will keep you from buying a train ticket.

According to Breitbart, by using surveillance cameras, informers and state security the government “closely monitors the behavior of all individuals…People considered loyal, law–abiding members of the Communist Party are assigned high social credit scores, while those who violate the law…are assigned lower scores.”

By May of this year 11 million Chinese with low social credit scores had been prevented from boarding airplanes and another 4 million couldn’t get on a train. No reports as yet of low scorers being forbidden to buy shoes.

The social credit system originally documented Internet activity. Where Chinese went on the web, what they posted and even what they bought. Now the system has grown to encompass a wide range of transgressions including “jaywalking, returning library books late [or] possessing frowned–upon religious or political materials, or [exhibiting] insufficient patriotism.”

Regardless of how much this system would improve the quality of life in San Francisco and the NFL, it still sounds ominous to me. And now that China has announced a cicada infestation, the other shoe has dropped.

For those of you who don’t keep current on bugs, cicadas are noisy critters who are chained to a calendar cycle, much like comets and women. Only the insect’s cycle is once every 17 years. Cicadas make their way out of the ground in multitudes, produce an incredible amount of noise and then molt out of their current body into a completely new version, something like aging trophy wives.

My local Washington Post is so obsessed with these bugs that it almost has a cicada beat. As the time for Peak Cicada approaches one finds the paper filled with headlines like:

Are Cicada Infestations Harsher and More Frequent Due to Global Warming?

Insect Activist Is the First to Take a Selfie With a Cicada

Trump and Cicadas: Is There a Russian Connection?

Even the Style and Food sections join in the excitement: ‘Expert Suggestions for Removing Cicadas from Your Shoes’; and ‘Cicada Crunch: A Protein–Packed, Summer Casserole With No Trans–fat’.

Some claim cicadas even taste like shrimp which, if true, will come in handy, because that’s what the Chinese government wants citizens to do. The South China Morning Post reports the city of Hangzhou, located in eastern China, is under attack by cicadas and a city official is urging residents to save the trees by eating a bug.

“Sun Xiaoping, the official in charge of green spaces…[said] the best way to deal with the problem was for the local community to turn the tables on the creepy-crawlies and do some eating of their own.”

Cicadas travel in swarms that can approach 1 million bugs per acre. That’s enough insects to feed an extended Chinese family of 48 for almost a year or a North Korean family for a decade.

There’s been no talk of consumption quota, but it’s still early in the infestation. How cicada crunching will affect one’s social credit score is unknown, too. Will eating just one be enough to preserve your social credit score or will you get bonus points for sharing recipes?

Vegans may also face a Hobson’s Choice between obeying their dietary neuroses or maintaining a mass–transit level social credit score.

The fact cicadas as a whole are able to defeat predators by swarming in such large numbers may offer hope for fastidious Chinese. The trick is to enter a swarm, eat nothing, but emerge smacking their lips. Just don’t forget to face a camera.

Time for Conservatives to Go On Strike

Retiring Rep. Paul Ryan (R–NeverTrump) has revealed what he hopes will be his lasting political legacy. Ryan intends to be the last Republican Speaker of the House. Ever.

And Ryan working hard to achieve his goal. The immigration bills he supports will do everything Donald Trump promised he wouldn’t do when he ran for president. Grant amnesty to DACA invaders and continue to dump low–wage visa workers into the food sector.

Gary McCoy, Shiloh, IL

Ryan’s bill gives amnesty to a minimum of 2 million illegals. A more accurate estimate, depending on the fraud levels and federal lassitude, is 6 million illegals. Plus, 1.35 million H–2C visas.

A Real Clear Politics poll shows that as soon as the conservative GOP base got wind of the plan, generic Republican poll numbers started dropping. Ryan doesn’t care, he’s busy burning down the House.

Amnesty presents problems for barnacles like Curator of the Senate Mitch McConnell (R–Inertia) who want to remain in DC. His solution is a warning that sounds more like a self–fulfilling prophecy.

The New York Times reports “…a strategy is emerging on the right for how to energize conservatives and drive a wedge between the anti–Trump left and moderate voters: warn that Democrats will immediately move to impeach President Trump if they capture the House.”

America Rising, a GOP consulting firm, sent an email warning “Right now the only thing standing between the president and the Democrats’ underhanded impeachment attempts is the Republican majority in the House fighting to defend our president.”

Former Trumper Steve Bannon, still stinking and smoldering from his political self–immolation, stopped beating out the flames long enough to add, “You have to put Donald Trump on the ticket. You’re not voting for Congress. You’re voting for Donald Trump.”

Thoughtful voters may find this ‘if you don’t vote for me, the other guy is gonna get it’ strategy curious. What possible additional damage could Democrats do after Republicans have willingly legalized 6 million new leftist voters?

GOP apologists can’t even attempt to balance the illegals sellout with other conservative legislation. There is none. Planned Parenthood still cashes federal checks. Competition is still missing from healthcare. The budget remains uncut. The federal government remains bloated.

The one bright spot is there’s a good chance Cinco de Mayo will soon be added to the list of national holidays!

It was ironic that McConnell was quoted telling an audience he’s like a cemetery groundskeeper, “Everybody’s under you but nobody’s listening.” It’s an accurate description of McConnell’s tenure as Senate Majority Leader. He marks time, keeping the lawn mowed and the bushes trimmed while awaiting Jesus’ return — when something will finally get done.

This month marks the only achievement that is really important to the curator. McConnell is now the longest serving GOP Senate majority leader in history. His legacy is longevity. Something that can also be said of a turtle.

It takes dedication and gullibility to find something in McConnell’s record to celebrate. The Hill contends a refusal to hold a vote on Obama’s final nominee to the Supreme Court is “McConnell’s most lasting legacy.” And the Emperor of Inertia’s strategy wasn’t even original. He was following ‘Shotgun’ Joe Biden’s lead.

The Hill was also impressed because McConnell, “kept a steady hand on the party through two political revolutions within the GOP: the emergence of the Tea Party in 2009 and 2010 and the election of President Trump.” Yes, McConnell managed to waste an unprecedented grassroots movement for change.

Now two bodies filled with ‘leadership’ that can’t stand the president are using Trump as a human shield. Vote to keep people in office who won’t do what you want — to prevent people from getting in office who will do what their base wants.

If you’re like me and are tired of campaign–only conservatives, lets send a message in November that even McConnell can’t ignore. It’s time for conservatives to go on strike.

This November conservatives should vote for the GOP Senate candidate and write in ‘On Strike’ as their congressional vote. ‘On Strike’ — instead of Mickey Mouse or Goofy — sends an unmistakable message.

‘On Strike’, we can make a difference. The write–in vote in Alabama was enough to deny victory to the creep. Our November write–ins can deny another victory to do–nothing, country club conservatives.

A Democrat House will try to impeach Trump, grab guns and may require Christians to not only bake same–sex wedding cakes, but also attend the service. So what? McConnell has plenty of room in his legislative mortuary.

The strike ends in 2020. We recapture the House delivering another base–generated wave for McConnell. Only this time, instead of wasting it like the TEA party and Trump waves, McConnell will know he either uses it or we’ll lose him.

Cold Civil War May Be Heating Up

Recent developments on the restaurant front are going to put a dent into ‘date night’ plans for Kellyanne Conway and her husband. If Sarah Huckabee Sanders can’t eat in peace with her Never Trump in–laws in some central Virginia one–horse–town, there’s no way Conway can have a sit–down dinner anywhere in DC or Northern Virginia and the drive–through may be out of the question, too.

Huckabee could have solved her problem by going around the corner to the Robert E. Lee Hotel for Italian. There is no way even the most self–righteous Social Justice Warrior would follow her into an establishment named after ‘Marse Robert.’

Rick McKee, The Augusta Chronicle, GA

Low–level Trump administration employees in Oregon should be so lucky.

For over a week in Portland, OR the domestic terrorist group Antifa has been blockading the entrance of the Immigration and Customs Enforcement building. Oregon Live reports the fascists claim they are staging their “round–the–clock occupation in opposition to the Trump administration’s immigration crackdown, including its policy of separating migrant children from their parents at the U.S. border.”

Portland Mayor Ted Wheeler agrees, “The policy being enacted by the federal government around the separation of very small children from their parents is an abomination. I want to be very clear I do not want the @PortlandPolice to be engaged or sucked into a conflict, particularly from a federal agency that I believe is on the wrong track, that has not fully lived American values of inclusion and is also an agency where the former head suggested that people who lead cities that are sanctuary cities like this one should be arrested.”

Since Wheeler and other sanctuary politicians are conspiring to obstruct the enforcement of federal immigration law, they should be arrested. If President Trump can be investigated for obstructing an imaginary Russia collusion crime, then Wheeler should expect equal treatment for proven obstruction.

Wheeler proves its short journey from sanctimonious ‘sanctuary city’ politicians deciding what laws they will enforce, to deciding who qualifies for protection under the law. In Portland’s Wheeler regime, illegal aliens are immune to federal immigration law, while federal employees don’t qualify for protection by the police.

I’m reasonably sure Wheeler isn’t a religious man, but what he’s done is equivalent to being excommunicated by the Catholic Church in the Middle Ages. The protection of government is removed from the excommunicated and they are on their own.

Wheeler’s denying federal employees protection under the law covers all the bases of lawlessness. It’s a direct violation of his oath of office where he pledged to “support the Constitutions of the United States and the State of Oregon; Charter of the City of Portland and its laws.” And selective enforcement of the law violates the ‘equal protection’ clause of the 14th Amendment to the Constitution.

Police Chief Danielle Outlaw appears to be a good German and is following the mayor’s orders to let lawlessness reign. This really is no different from Nazi Germany, where the police were ordered by party officials to ignore Brown Shirt attacks on Communists.

It’s only a short rotation on the color wheel from Brown Shirt fascists to black–clad Antifa fascists.

This is also where society begins to unravel. If federal employees doing their job for a legitimately elected president can’t expect protection from local police their taxes support, then it won’t be long before the employees decide to take their safety into their own hands.

Wheeler’s us–against–them politics has aroused the interest of Uncle Sam. Usually local officials and police don’t like it when the feds start big–footing around their jurisdiction. Here Wheeler invites it and the invitation has been accepted by the Federal Protective Service.

The Service distributed a flyer ordering occupiers to leave: “It is unlawful under federal law to obstruct the entrances, foyers, lobbies, corridors, offices and/or parking lots of federal facilities.”

Those arrested will be sent to a federal facility and tried in a federal court.

The ICE building takes up the entire block where it’s located. Assuming Antifa clears federal land without a street battle, the feds are powerless to evict them from private property surrounding the block. The occupiers could well emulate the border jumpers they profess to love and trespass on adjacent private land. Where Portland cops will continue to ignore them.

Sanders was no doubt irritated by her treatment, but she had meal options. That’s not the case with law enforcement. When the police violate their oath and duty by refusing to protect law–abiding citizens from a fascist mob, there is no other option for the average citizen except direct action.

Wheeler and the other leftists in his Amen corner need to ask themselves if that’s really a road down which they want to travel.