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#132162 - 08/27/04 12:52 PM New definition of stupidity  
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TEd Remington Offline
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Bonehead award one, a “government as good as it gets” bonehead award, goes to the Okaloosa County, Florida, sheriff’s department which believes they have found the solution for getting rid of drug dealers and prostitutes in the Florida Panhandle: cut down an oak tree.

I’m not making this up. Really!

Because drug dealers and prostitutes tend to transact business underneath a particular old oak tree in the county, sheriff’s deputies are advocating cutting down the tree, believing it will end the drug and prostitution problems because these unwelcome elements will no longer have their usual place for doing business. And they will just go out of business, I suppose.

County officials are in disbelief. “Why not deal with the people underneath the tree rather than cut down the tree?" asked a confused Christy Johnson, a senior county planner.

It appears the county is losing the battle to preserve the oak and reasonable thinking.

The Herald-Tribune (Florida) 25-Aug-04


-----------

And WE put these people in charge! Shame on US!





TEd
#132163 - 08/27/04 01:46 PM Re: New definition of stupidity  
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AnnaStrophic Offline
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TEd, you often confuse me, and this time is no exception: are you asking or answering a question?


#132164 - 08/27/04 01:59 PM Re: New definition of stupidity  
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Okaloosa County:

Oak: a-lose-a-count--ee!!!!




#132165 - 08/27/04 02:04 PM are you asking or answering a question?  
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TEd Remington Offline
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No. Just presenting a new example in connection with the definition of the word stupidity.




TEd
#132166 - 08/27/04 03:49 PM Re: are you asking or answering a question?  
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Capfka Offline
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Utter Placebo, Planet Reebok
Well, here's my armchair psychology coming out in full force. A bright policeman is a rare beast. I remember a criminologist who had been a policeman in Australia before he thought better of it and went into academia saying in a talk I attended that IQ testing carried out on police officers in the US (can't remember where or when) showed that they were on average a full 10 percentage points below the average population IQ, and the range was typically no more than fifteen points either way!

He also pointed out that your typical petty criminal, including most street-level drug dealers, exhibited roughly the same deviation from the population mean.

His point was that crime will only be solved and ultimately controlled when the people who are responsible for maintaining law and order are brighter than the criminals they are trying to detect and prevent. But nothing about your typical law enforcement agency attracts anyone but the less-than-mediocre. Or keeps them, anyway.

Police forces also have to eradicate the gung-ho attitudes and laddishness that typically permeates them, he believed. I think that we all see what he means around us. Younger male police officers everywhere tend to shave their heads, grow moustaches, pull their cap peaks down over their brows and wear wrap-around reflective sunglasses. There was also a fad in New Zealand for a while which demanded that they get tattoos. All this is quite intimidating for your average bloke/blokess in the street

A guy I knew finished a masters degree and then joined the police force. He was given hell by his fellow officers for over a year because of his qualification. When the "joke" was reiterated at an awards ceremony by a senior officer he decided enough was enough and went back to university to do a law degree. He is now defending criminals against his former colleagues, with marked success ...


#132167 - 08/27/04 03:59 PM Re: are you asking or answering a question?  
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Wordwind Offline
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In reply to:

and went back to university to do a law degree. He is now defending criminals against his former colleagues, with marked success ...


...and I just read this morning in the paper about a study that shows the act of getting revenge, whether one directly benefits from the act or not, is healthful. Of course, the study just involved games playing and not actual revenge in real life situations where I think suppressed guilt might wear away at those healthful gains.


#132168 - 08/27/04 04:01 PM Re: are you asking or answering a question?  
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Capfka Offline
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He's never put it to me as revenge or even hinted that he gets any satisfaction out of it for that reason. I was just pointing out the irony.


#132169 - 08/27/04 04:06 PM Re: are you asking or answering a question?  
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Wordwind Offline
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Not that revenge couldn't be ironic...


#132170 - 08/27/04 04:08 PM Re: are you asking or answering a question?  
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Capfka Offline
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It would certainly be ironic if he failed to beat his former colleagues in court and revenge was his intention ...


#132171 - 08/29/04 12:36 AM Re: New definition of stupidity  
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grapho Offline
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I’m not making this up. Really!

No, you're not making it up. Here is link to complete story:
http://apnews.excite.com/article/20040825/D84MGC880.html

Of course, they don't need to remove the tree to remove the privacy which the tree affords. All they have to do is position floodlights around, or in, the tree which are activated after dark by motion detectors.

They must have hydro in Okaloosa County because the police department is lit up with dim bulbs.



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