Coming to a Burbank near you

Everything that’s wrong in the world can be found in the following few paragraphs. And naturally, they’re Burbank bound…

LOS ANGELES, Aug. 4, 2015 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — Los Angeles may be best known for two things: producing incredible Hollywood movies and producing equally incredible rush-hour traffic. Yet, if the tech startups that have been flooding into the area over the past few years have their way, Los Angeles will soon also be known as a booming tech epicenter, rivaling Silicon Valley and the Pacific Northwest.

One such company staking their claim in the Los Angeles tech landscape is Coding Dojo, which is launching its third campus directly outside of LA, in Burbank, completing a logical expansion for the company to complement the two existing campuses in Seattle and Silicon Valley. Founded in 2011, Coding Dojo began with the express purpose of creating a coding bootcamp that emphasizes excellence, inclusion and potential within their students.

One such student that learned of his own potential was Aaron Chung, who left his job as a middle school math teacher in southern California to take advantage of the expanding tech industry. As an alumni of Coding Dojo’s 14-week development program – which is the only 3-full stack education in the industry – Chung was able to gain the coding skills and technical knowledge to complete both front and back-end development, something he would not have been able to achieve from other coding bootcamps.

The time and energy invested with Coding Dojo was certainly worthwhile for Chung. “Shortly after I graduated from Coding Dojo’s Silicon Valley campus, I was contacted by dozens of recruiters and had two different job offers within a week after I moved back down to LA,” Chung said, having since accepted an offer as a technical product manager with TouchCommerce, an online engagement company.

Reach for the heights son.

The success of post-graduation hirings for alumni like Chung should come as no surprise, as the employment opportunities in the tech sector of Los Angeles continue to skyrocket. With more than 368,500 high tech jobs according to a report published by Los Angeles County Economic Development Corporation in October 2014, the tech sector of Los Angeles accounts for more than 9% of all employment in the county — exceeding the tech employment levels of New York City, Boston-Cambridge, and even Silicon Valley.

At only nine percent? How can that be?

“We sought out a location in LA because we see it as a growing tech sector,” says Coding Dojo CEO, Richard Wang. “Los Angeles is also becoming a thriving ecosystem of entrepreneurs.”

It seems that a plethora of potential developers and entrepreneurs have been piqued by the arrival of Coding Dojo’s rigorous bootcamp to the burgeoning tech mecca of Los Angeles. More than 210 applicants vied for one of the 33 spots in the first LA cohort that just kicked off, and already 52 applicants are waiting in the wings to start their own journey at the LA campus during the next cohort this October.

Note on the word “plethora.” We have a feeling that the Grammar Girl over at the Leader could have a few choice things to say about the sudden arrival of this very silly word. We’ve been seeing it used everywhere.

Perhaps most exciting for the dozens of students about to begin classes, and for the hundreds waiting on the sidelines for their chance to enter the Dojo, is the prospect of what comes next following completion of the 14-week program. With an astounding 92% job placement within 60 days of graduation for students that have passed all proficiency testing, the success stories of students enrolled in Coding Dojo’s LA campus are sure to be transformative.

Do native English speakers talk like this? It all sounds a bit religious too, in translation, which it obviously is. Like cultish.

 

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BUSD tries to hide how they perform drug searches in classrooms — and with the students present

 
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An all-too-innocuous entry on Thursday night’s board agenda goes out of its way to hide the real story here.

Sadly, this and the private contract itself have been going on for way too many years…

 

Impact Canine 2015 2016.pdf

 

The Burbank Unified School District is refusing to fess up here about two things:

1) They use these creepy dogs to search the individual classrooms, not just the gym and parking lots; and,

2) They often perform these searches with the kids still in the room.

We’ve been tipped off about this for years by the kids. In fact, one of this company’s big selling points at the time of their first contract was that because they were neither cops nor administrators, they could supposedly do things at the schools that the others were not allowed to legally.

Or so they thought.

Such as … surreptitiously use their dogs to check out the kids as bystanders, without a search warrant or probable cause, and then alert the authorities if they thought anything hinky was going on.

They were wrong of course, which makes this part of Thursday’s agreement especially absurd. It’s a subterfuge, too — just like their leaving out any written mention of individual classrooms was — and perfectly revealing of what both groups think they can get away with:

 

Impact Canine 2015 2016-2

 

Sorry, but “Canine Solutions” is indeed an agent of the school district, and thus it cannot be used to circumvent the normal legal protections against unlawful searches by the government. This company is bound by the same rules the others are — like police and administrators.

Ask any attorney, BUSD. A real one.

 

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Summer’s over — thanks to that official educational sacrament known as “Final Exams”

A good piece in the Leader this week about how ridiculous it is that all of the public schools in this area will be opening in about a week. As always though, no one down there knows how to back things up enough in the logic department to see just what the underlying problem is, let alone be able to offer an obvious solution.

This is what happens btw when foolish and destructive right-wing ideas get mainstreamed — they become acceptable.

School starts way too early now because there were a number of un-examined claims a few years ago that kids will forget everything they know during Christmas vacation, and thus they’ll completely bomb out on their all-important final exams in January. So, these experts and board members told us, let’s just get rid of January.

The fact that final exams were never necessary in the first place– and were completely unheard of until the late 1980s — never seemed to factor into anyone’s thinking process when it came to making this big a change in the traditional school year. So because the bureaucrats wanted an intact school semester without any possible loss of youthful brain cells, and because final exams are also an accountant’s (or better yet, a Republican politician’s) idea of good pedagogy, the school semester itself now had to begin much earlier. Like in early to mid-August, cooling and energy costs be damned.

That’s the only way it can work they said. So sorry, parents. Yes, we know it’s inconvenient…

This is the same bureaucratic mindset (remember) which insisted on building expensive new schools with un-open-able windows to the outside so that they could look and act just like office buildings. The new academic ideal, schools as office buildings — and which means too that the air conditioning in these rooms must always be set in the “on” position no matter how breezy our summer afternoons can be.

So let’s get rid of these stupid finals weeks. The only reason the public colleges have them in California is because the Reagan administration pushed it through in the late 1960s to enforce their idea of discipline on all those Marxist hippie kids they were so worried about. That and firing Herbert Marcuse. It’s actually in the state rule books that the UCs and CSUs must have final exams. In the old days the professors used to tell us this as an apology, but now they act like it’s normal.

But is this something we really want to emulate? To the point of stupidity? Why?

And for all those pious hypocrites who are so concerned about the educational fate of others, keep in mind that when you were attending Burbank schools there was no such thing as a “finals” week. The Age of Insanity had not yet begun.

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Full of over-pedigreed mediocrities and douchebags

New York city is, that is. Good for the museums and that’s about it. California excels in everything else now, especially the people.

Wasn’t always so…

 

 

 

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Burbank’s not-yet-an-angel is back in the news

 
We were tipped off today that the girl who survived the five-person death that occurred as they all sped off the Golden State Freeway together drunk is (apparently) suing the surviving families for damages.

 

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Yes, there’s a lot of them.
 
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Wonder if the insurance company attorneys have seen these.
 
 

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What people?

The bureaucratic-minded are defending Burbank’s absurd (and expensive) version of a “community garden.”

As to be expected, it’s wonderful:

The proposed garden includes it all: vegetable plots, native habitat and rain garden, permeable pavers, decorative metal fence with public art components, amphitheater as a gathering and public meeting place, fruit trees, bike rack, communal demonstration plot, river rock arroyo, tool shed, and recycling and compost area. Hopefully, it will be as much fun, productive, rewarding, inspiring and educational as all the participants imagined. When you ask people what they want, they will tell you!

Gardening, as planned by a Committee. None of this crap of course is necessary or desirable.

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Why Burbank will never be what it wants to be

We only attract the best.

A 23-year-old Burbank man was acquitted this week of attempted murder and assault charges stemming from a stabbing incident last year involving his best friend, officials said.

Eric Wang was found not guilty of one count each of attempted murder and assault with a deadly weapon, with his attorney arguing that Wang acted in self-defense when he pulled out a knife after he was tackled by his best friend, Anthony Savage.

The fight occurred at Wang’s home one evening in January of last year after the pair had spent an afternoon together eating and drinking at Umami Burger and Don Cuco in Burbank

Around 7:30 p.m., police responded to Wang’s home, where they found Savage on the sidewalk with multiple stab wounds and severe head and upper-body injuries. Wang reportedly told police at first that he had no idea what happened and that Savage had showed up in that condition…

Savage reportedly testified that the fight occurred after he consoled Wang, who was angry about a phone conversation with his mother, but Flanagan said the fight occurred after an argument about a man they had met at Umami.

Keep in mind that Umami is one of the more hip places around town.

Just wait until the new Whole Foods opens up (if it ever does). It’s bound to be the first one to need to place security guards next to the bulk food bins.

Transiency and trust funds, that should be our new city motto. The subliterates’ paradise we are.

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Christgau in Burbank

Who knew?

It wasn’t that I saw academia as a career. It was that I saw Cal Arts as an interesting job at an interesting place when I was still clocking forty bucks a column (which did rise to sixty, thanks a lot Dan.) And I also saw it as a chance to sample a city that had always fascinated the urbanist in me. Although I was often sad in L.A. — a provisional romance with a colleague expired when her Brandeis boyfriend rejoined her in March — I loved living there. I loved the sun, the freeways, the supermarkets, the skinny-dipping in the campus pool, weekending with my friends in Berkeley and Del Mar. Luckily for me, construction on the futuristic campus further north was far behind schedule, so first-year classes were held at a defunct Catholic girls’ school in Burbank, and I rented the roomy second story of a backyard add-on in North Hollywood. Coming from Avenue B, I found this big cheap bright suburban space miraculously commodious, but for all of Cal Arts’ talk of “community,” few other faculty members resided in the San Fernando Valley — that is, near campus. My class in popular culture and rock history ran all Tuesday night in my living room, car service provided, and required every student to prepare dinner for the group once a term.

Right next door. How can such things be? Lives would be different if we’d been clued in. What else didn’t we know?

He adds:

One thing I concluded about Los Angeles was that beyond Cal Arts there weren’t enough smart women there.

The good years didn’t last.

CalArts’ second year began with excitement as the Valencia campus opened. But troubles soon continued. A faculty member who supported nude bathing on campus disrobed in front of the trustees. Another board meeting was visited by students dressed as giant penises.

“Those people really pushed us to the brink,” said Patty Disney, wife of Walt’s grandson, Roy Jr., in a recent interview. “They were enormously insulting to us.”

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Words of wisdom

The following from Digby about the police is, of course, incontrovertible…

You’ll notice that police commonly take hours to deal with virtually any call — unless someone is “defying” their order, in which case they will not take even an extra five minutes to try to defuse the situation or allow an unarmed suspect to flee, even knowing that they will be able to catch up with them later. It’s not about time pressure or fear for their own lives, it’s about disrespect. And it’s a particular problem for African Americans, with the racial bias that clearly underlies so many of these stops.

Many cops are skilled and experienced enough to handle these situations peacefully, and other professions which have strategies to deal with potentially violent altercations without escalating them could be tapped for better training. This isn’t brain surgery. But the militarization of the police and the combat zone attitude adopted by so many departments makes little use of any skills other than sheer force when what largely makes for effective policing in a free society are psychology, patience, common sense, empathy, confidence and maturity. If these skills were more highly valued, there is little doubt that unarmed citizens with names like Michael Brown, John Crawford, Eric Garner, Tamir Rice, Walter Scott, and many, many more would be alive today. Leaving the gun in the holster would certainly have saved the life of Samuel DuBose.

There are many unanswered questions about this latest killing. But one thing we know for sure: If there had not been any video, the officer’s account would have closed the books on this incident immediately. Obviously, that happens with some frequency. Making body cams mandatory will help as it did in the DuBose case. But to truly fix this problem our society must confront the root causes — racism, police militarization and rampant abuse of authority.

Something’s changed within the last 30 years for sure with all these “chicken-crap” fishing expeditions and stand-your-ground arrogance. We need those cameras as a start.

But as we said yesterday, Burbank won’t be getting them until after they start to lose big cases against judges and juries who’ve become used to seeing visual evidence.

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Need more reasons?

An obvious example, yes, but without a body cam this cop would have easily gotten away with the standard line:

Which of course is why the BPD does not want either body cams or dashboard videos.

Oh, and there was this one too:

Without the videos these cops would be considered heroes. They’d be naming schools after them.

We guarantee you that when Burbank finally gets these cameras installed because judges and juries start demanding them for credibility purposes, all of a sudden those glib local newspaper stories about how “the suspect consented to a search” and then “resisted arrest and was tasered after he tried to flee the scene” will quickly disappear.

How long you think it will take? We predict that Burbank will get PD cameras only after they start losing cases to judges and juries who’ve become accustomed to their use everywhere else. People will start wondering why they always have to take Burbank’s word on everything.

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Hooray for Mormons

Because without them it’ll be nothing but circle jerks and jazz concerts in the park.

 

 

BTW, isn’t the BUSD still giving them lots of free classroom space every week?

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Smart merchandising would mean going after British cars

 

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Since the ’47 Triumph always wins the top award at this show, hasn’t it occurred to the promoters yet that maybe they should do everything they can to highlight British entries? There are few if any local venues for them any more.

Famous cars, exotic vehicles and hot rods will fill four blocks of downtown Burbank this weekend for the fourth annual Downtown Burbank Car Classic, which will also feature music, chalk artists and vendors.

Vehicles from the Petersen Automotive Museum, the Television Motion Picture Car Club and West Coast Customs will be on display from 3 to 9 p.m. on Saturday, along with restored and pre-1974 cars on San Fernando Boulevard between Magnolia Boulevard and Angeleno Avenue.

The event is free and open to the public.

Look, we’re always accused of being negative around and never contributing to the solution, but why didn’t anyone else think of this specifically? There are almost no British car shows in Southern California now, and some of these guys (and their wives) would be thrilled to have a well-attended venue to showcase their collections.

People would love it, too. You can spot muscle cars every week down at Bob’s, but when’s the last time anyone in Burbank saw an Alvis?

The $300,000 a year city bureaucrats who run this downtown P-BID never use their heads, do they? Maybe Leno would even bring down one of his Singers.

 

 

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Who’s he talking about?

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Councilman Rogers wants to find a better way to help keep the lines of communication going about the airport…

I want to thank MyBurbank.com for covering the recent Joint Session of the Airport Authority and the Burbank City Council, and especially for providing readers direct access via links to materials detailing the Airport Authority’s most recent proposal.

Regardless of whether one soundly rejects the proposal, fully endorses it as the outline we must pursue, or withholds any conclusion until some questions are answered, I believe the proposal is patently and objectively superior to the terms unanimously, formally and publicly supported by the Burbank City Council just five months ago.

I will not presume to speak for my City Council colleagues, but as we continue in this process I am convinced all of us believe it’s urgent that Burbank residents keep themselves informed, and monitor as much as possible the discussions and exchanges of information between the government bodies involved.

To that end, I’m looking for public input on an intimately related question, and that is what is the most reliable, convenient and useful means to provide residents notices of the various meetings and exchanges of documents?

Fair enough.

But then — as he will —  Rogers insists on continuing his long-running burlesque show:

Especially as the next municipal election now on the distant horizon begins to loom, I have no doubt we’ll soon begin to hear from the ubiquitous candidates or campaign supporters.  Indeed, they’re occasionally heard from already.

I don’t read minds, so I cannot claim to know their agendas and intents.  I can only observe that the sort I’m referring to routinely and solemnly assure members of the public that they DO know the secret thoughts and plans of anyone who refutes their claims.  And typically, the tent-pole, keystone and otherwise pivotal point of all those claims is that only THEY will tell you what is secretly taking place, only they have amassed the disparate puzzle of facts and assembled them into a clear picture of what others are REALLY doing and why.  And finally, only they have the courage, intelligence and stamina to protect you from the inherently destructive and corrupt agendas they perceive.

Rather than seeing voters and other residents once again misled by one or more purveyors of fear and conspiracy, I think it’s vitally important Burbankers get information for themselves, ask tough questions of ALL sides, and apply both common sense and a full dose of accurate history in the process of forming their opinions and conclusions.

Yeah, ok, we all know he’s talking about Gordon and the next campaign. But what year is this? That middle paragraph sounds like it was carved from some “award-winning” 1996 article of his about Ted McConkey or what ever other straw man they had around back then to help marginalize dissent. But who does this apply to now?

He just said there’s no one concerned enough to be showing up at the various outreach events. To “that end” the coffeehouse parking scandal on Magnolia does yes generate about 10,000 times more interest these days. The old crowd is gone.

Personalities aside, our position on the airport is very simple: no new terminal. And certainly no package “Opportunity Site” real estate deal to help sweeten the pot. Big money of course will be saying the exact opposite, and if that’s not a conspiracy or a secret plan or anything else sinister-like then who cares?

Those counter-interests still exist no matter what you want to call them or why. There’s nothing wrong — or pathological–  in pointing them out.

 

 

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Community Gardens, Burbank style

Jesus Christ, can’t these people keep their damn tentacles away from ideas like this?

 

FireShot Capture - Burbank plots to rent space for communi_ - http___www.burbankleader.com_news_tn

 

This bears about as much resemblance to a “community garden” as that new executive hotel on SF Blvd.

And what are they going to do once it’s ready– dictate the kind of plants that can be grown there? Talk about taking the fun out of things. Has this crowd ever seen one?

Like some plants that take a few seasons to mature before they blossom, plans for a proposed pilot community garden in Burbank that have been nurtured since October 2008 may soon be flowering.

On Monday, Judie Wilke, director of the city’s Parks and Recreation Department, provided an update on the project at a meeting of the Sustainable Burbank Commission. Earlier this year, the City Council allocated $125,000 for the effort in the budget for the fiscal year that began July 1.

In an email last week, Wilke said she hopes the project will be completed by the end of the fiscal year, but it depends on her department’s workload.

Community gardens are like what, an idea straight out of 1976?

Keeping with the times, Burbank. And then completely ruining them once you get there.

Now here’s a real community garden, you bureaucratic a-holes:

 

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When you’re making $300,000 a year in pay and benefits that rough stuff just doesn’t appeal, does it.

 

 

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Cause everybody’s gotta be a hardass too

Achievement. Discipline.

Competition!

Leader Editorial: The games bring out our best

The opinion of the Leader

In coming days several thousand extraordinary athletes will compete on an international level when the Special Olympic World Games unfold at venues throughout the Los Angeles area for the first time in 16 years.

From the Balboa Center in Encino to the sands at Long Beach, in arenas and fields at UCLA and its rival USC, in downtown Los Angeles and at the Equestrian Center in Burbank, records may be broken, cheers will most assuredly be heard, quiet tears of joy and disappointment will be perhaps be shed…

Such undertakings don’t happen without some help from friends. We can take collective pride in the fact that people here opened their hearts and wallets to make this event a success. Members of our local police departments not only literally carried the torch for the games, but also earmarked money from their annual Tip-a-Cop programs for them. Civic clubs and nonprofit organizations raised funds on their own and businesses chipped in as well…

Cops take tips now?

The Special Olympics World Games is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for many of the athletes involved and a chance for all of us to come together in a spirit of warm inclusiveness. It looks like we’ve already got a head start on achieving the latter. Let’s continue lending our encouragement to these dedicated, inspiring athletes and, when it’s all over, send them all home with wide smiles and good feelings about the Southland.

Oh that’s all such mawkish bullshit. Condescending, too. And why is it always about sports?

Meanwhile, the local arts groups can’t find anything decent enough to display in public.

Burbank Parks and Recreation Department extends art proposals deadline

Artists will get more time to develop their proposals for participation in a new beautification program in Burbank aimed at bringing visual art out of museums and galleries and into open spaces.

The Burbank Parks and Recreation Department in June began accepting applications from artists interested in decorating one of seven pad-mounted electric equipment boxes throughout the city with unique murals.

The original deadline to apply has been extended by three weeks — to Aug. 7 at 5 p.m. — after city officials determined that artists would need more time to develop the materials needed for the competitive selection process, according to Amanda Okafor, a spokeswoman for the city.

What a season.

There’s no shortage of fucked-up values next door, either. Such as, how many of these guys served?

 

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Or these?

 

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And don’t we already have a VA for this kind of stuff? This is the same group btw with the country western commercials that rhyme “Vietnam” and  “Afghanistan.”

Or it it, “Alabam'”? Who can tell.

After being held for more than 30 years, the annual charity motorcycle event known as the Love Ride will take place for the last time this October, and the fundraising effort will get underway on Saturday with a street festival near Harley-Davidson of Glendale…

The event will feature live music, a custom-car-and-bike show with new- and old-school rides, a barbecue, vendors, a beer garden, raffles and prizes.

Also on hand will be about 40 veterans who were aided by the nonprofit Wounded Warriors Project, the organization that will be benefiting from the Love Ride this year.

Founded in 2003, the Wounded Warriors Project provides services and programs to soldiers hurt in combat.

Anyone ever asked how much the organizers of right-wing pressure groups like this get paid? Didn’t think so.

Isn’t everyone also sick of hearing about “Vets”? When’s this all going to end? And remember when being a “warrior” was not considered a good thing?

What the hell happened?

 

V-J-Day-Kids

 

 

 

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Who says we can’t abridge the power of the city manager?

First it was our august position as a “charter city” that made it perfectly ok to throw out mail votes mailed on election day. Remember that one? Now apparently it’s because of our “city manager form of government” that we can’t let our boards and commissions have any real power.

Why is that? Because this would supposedly tread upon the administrative rights of the CM and his staff members under our local “city manager” system. At least that’s what was insinuated on Tuesday night, when talk arose among the council members that it might be a nice idea to give our police commission some real power instead of allowing it to continue to perform as the local cheerleading branch of the Retired Cops of America League.

Power like what other cities have. Maybe even (lord forbid) some hiring and firing power, or binding review of administrative decisions. In other words, real CIVILIAN oversight.

There’s nothing about our city manager form of government that makes it impossible to share power in Burbank. We also don’t need to reconvene the “charter commission” in order to just think about doing so, a claim that was also urged upon the council last Tuesday night in order to quash the idea ASAP.’

Remember them, the charter commission? They’re the ones who also wanted to remove the power of the voters to pick and choose our city clerk and city treasurer. Their preferred plan was to let staff members pick recommended finalists for the city council to vote on instead.

Yeah, Democracy.

Face it. Burbank doesn’t want any of its boards and commissions to have real power. No way nada. That’s why staff went out of its way a couple of years ago to convince a previous city council to strip them of what little they already had. Just ask some of those old CSB members like Mary Lou Howard. They even tried to get rid of her when she started to show a bit of independence.

Again, where do you think we live.

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Inventing an arrest

Exactly what did this guy do wrong?

Remember Adam-12? In the old days people would get pulled over, they’d bitch and moan, the cops would say “Yes ma’am” and “No ma’am,” they’d give them the ticket and they’d be on their way.

Now, if they get any grief at all, the cops go out of their way turn it into a compliance lesson for all involved. They deliberately escalate the situation in order to generate an excuse to take people in. It happens in Burbank, too.

One classic tactic also involves generating a phony confrontational incident in order to justify a no-PC fishing expedition. We saw that very clearly in the BPD bike video yesterday.

Remember the days too when they also assured us that tasers would only be used in lieu of a gun to protect people? It’s how they were sold in Burbank.

That lasted what, about two hours? Now they’re forcible compliance tools of first use.

Everywhere.

What did Gennaco say about this use?

Btw, what legal grounds did the BPD have in trying to detain this guy in the first place? By his screams he didn’t seem to know. Remember, cops can only detain people for PC.

We ask this question simply because the Supreme Court has ruled that in a low-crime area like the above, it’s perfectly legal to walk away from cops — or avoid them in any way you can  — unless there’s specific cause for a detention. The cops just can’t order you to stop because they see you walking around, or notice that you see them.

Does Burbank know this rule? They didn’t use to. We know that for a fact. Or do they just fabricate phony excuses to do so, to pull people over, or chase them?

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Isn’t it pronounced Phil-lip-pes?

No, we’re not upset that Rogers made a sarcastic remark last night about what some say can you can learn when you hang around Downtown LA too much listening to attorneys.

It’s just that — as a ninth-generation Southern Californian — we’re more concerned that both Will and Mike were pronouncing the name of the place incorrectly.

It’s three syllables, not two.

Ful-lee-pays. Or, Ful-lee-pees. But never Ful-leeps.

 

 

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Watch this again

Notice how similar this is to the recent Texas incident.

1. A bullshit stop.

2. An irritated and complaining subject.

3. A cop who thinks that a bad attitude equals insubordination, and uses this as an excuse to escalate the situation by manufacturing a phony reason to order them around (i.e., contempt of cop retaliation.)

4. Complete failure to follow through on the original cause for the stop itself.

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