Monday briefing and open thread

“Any bank robber who robs a bank with no gun and just a note goes away to prison. A judge who steals over half a million dollars should enjoy the same fate … As a former federal prosecutor, it would be unthinkable to have this type of defendant get a slap on the wrist.” ~Lloyd Meyer

Let’s just rip this bandaid off and get it done. Diane Hathaway was charged with bank fraud, and it looks like a guilty plea was negotiated. Lloyd Meyer is a former federal prosecutor quoted in the linked article.

I stand by what I said earlier; 2 years with Diane Hathaway ending with a fraud conviction (I’m guessing) is still better than 2 years of Cliff Taylor sleeping through cases and instinctively ruling for the corporation that poisoned your family or the insurance company that sleazed its way out of a legitimate claim.

Meanwhile, here’s what happened with Thad McCotter’s people:

Besides avoiding jail time in the case, Don Yowchuang and Paul Seewald also received another piece of welcome news when Wayne Circuit Judge Margie Braxton dropped the felony conspiracy charge pending against both men. That’s especially good news for Mr. Seewald because that means he avoids any felony convictions.

Mr. Yowchuang, who was Mr. McCotter’s deputy district director and generally seen as the ringleader of the fraud, earlier had pleaded no contest to 10 felony counts of forgery and six misdemeanor counts of falsely signing a nominating petition as a circulator. He received three years probation with any probation violation resulting in him serving the last year in jail. Mr. Yowchuang also received a sentence of 200 hours community service, court costs and fees and a requirement to report any contact with police or loss of employment to his probation officer.

Mr. Yowchuang admitted to authorities that he copied pages of petitions signed by registered voters to inflate the number of signatures the campaign submitted. The fraud also included the cutting of names and signatures from previous campaigns and pasting of them onto new petitions to pass them off as new signatures, although Mr. Yowchuang has denied doing so.

Mr. Seewald, Mr. McCotter’s district director, earlier pleaded guilty to nine misdemeanor counts of falsely signing a nominating petition as a circulator. He received two years probation, 100 hours of community service, court costs and fees and must report any contact with police or loss of employment to his assigned probation officer.

No jail time, charges dropped. Fees, community service. Blah blah blah. The Republicans are in full on moral masturbation mode, but I haven’t see any Republican press releases on Thad McCotter’s cheating staff. There was a Republican (Michigander) blogger who complained about it a few months ago, but only because it resulted in Dave Curson, a Democrat, taking Thad McCotter’s place in Congress for a couple of months.

That’s crazy, right? Because the Republicans are all about purity and righteousness.

And in other news, the righteous ones continue to try to rig the vote so that they can keep taking elected office even though the majority of the public do not want them. And aren’t they lucky that the leader of this crap in the State House is a guy under investigation for election fraud?


And elsewhere ..

Dale Hansen has a nice post over at the Detroit News Blog:

The best example of this is their insistence that more guns are the only way to prevent gun violence despite evidence to the contrary. This is like Hostess claiming that the only way to reduce the obesity problem this country faces is for people to eat more Twinkies.

Another quick note on guns: why are we talking about which schools have guns and which do not? As a security measure, shut the f up about where the guns are. Whether it’s in your home or workplace or school, you don’t talk about the who, what, or where of guns.

Don’t forget that Tony Trupiano returns to the airwaves on January 28

I am pleased to share with you that I will be returning to the airwaves on Monday, January 28, 2013 in a new time slot on a new station here in the Detroit market. The show is being rebranded as Night Shift and will air Monday through Friday evening from 7-10 p.m. On 1130 AM WDFN. WDFN is a 50,000 Watt station, having a much greater reach than WDTW did.

You can keep up with Tony over on his website & blog. Today he has a nice post reflecting on the life and accomplishments of Martin Luther King, Jr.

Governor Snyder hints that he might run for a second term:

“Snyder said “we could fall back into the old Michigan,” adding he didn’t want his term viewed as an upward tick in a 44-year decline.”

Oh I don’t think that “upward tick” thing is going to happen. But more to the point, why is this news? He announced this over a year ago:

“That’s the intention,” he confirms. “A ten-year plan — two years running and eight years in office.”

Off topic: The earliest known photograph of men drinking beer. Edinburgh Ale, 1844

Census Daily Monday, January 21st. You may think the debate about smoking is fairly recent, but the more things change, the more they resemble 1908. On this date that year, the New York City council passed an ordinance that made it illegal for women to smoke in public. The ordinance was the result of a campaign by the National Anti-Cigarette League. At the time, a number of cities had banned smoking, along with the states of Arkansas, Iowa, Idaho, and Tennessee. All of these laws were revoked by 1917, since they were not only difficult to enforce but added to the allure of smoking. That allure has diminished in the succeeding decades, but between last July and August, the value of U.S. tobacco product shipments jumped almost 12 percent, to $3.7 billion.


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