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Score one for justice, maybe: The out of control police department in Llano, Texas, has been hit with so many indictments for official misconduct that there's almost nobody left on the force to handle the important work of getting donuts and harassing people who get mouthy to cops. In a rare case of holding small town law enforcement to account, five officers -- including the town's police chief -- have been indicted for abuse of power in a string of incidents going back to the spring of 2016. Even better, the whole mess is explored in detail by Austin's KXAN-TV in a refreshingly in-depth report from a local teevee station. Hooray for local prosecutors and local journamalists!


The grand jury indictments stem from several incidents in which police just plain lost their shit while strutting around, dress'd in a little brief authority and the certainty THEY AM THE LAW:

In December, Llano Officer Grant Harden was indicted on six counts; including charges of tampering with dash camera footage of a DWI stop, tampering with the video of an arrest, using excessive force against a woman he was arresting and unlawful arrest of that woman on charges of assaulting a public servant and resisting arrest.

Harden was later indicted a third time, charged with assaulting another woman prosecutors said he "unlawfully" charged with resisting arrest on April 26, 2016.

Yeah, KXAN went straight from Harden's first to his third set of indictments, because the second one involved a whole raft of additional cops gone bad: In May of 2017, Harden and three other Llano officers -- including Police Chief Kevin Ratliff -- showed up at the door of Cory Nutt to arrest him after he cussed at Harden for driving too fast through his neighborhood, and then having the effrontery not to step out of his home to face justice. Here's body-cam video of Harden threatening to get Nutt fired from his job at a local utility for being a very bad person and also drunk in public -- which is kind of a difficult charge to prove when a guy is standing inside his own damn door, but Harden says at one point Nutt had been out at the curb "dropping the f-bomb" at him.

Golly, one of the officers, Aimee Shannon, offers to light him up with a taser if he refuses to show her ID -- but also warns him to keep his hands in sight, so she has a great excuse either way. Luckily, Nutt is white, so that set of contradictory commands wasn't followed by her shouting "GUN GUN GUN!" and blowing him away.

We also like the part where Harden threatens to call Nutt's boss and get him fired, since obviously that's just plain good law enforcin'.

Eventually, Nutt stepped out of the house after Officer Aimee Shannon points a taser at him and the officers threaten him with it, "Do you want tased," a cop asks Nutt, "She's fixing to tase you, dude."

"Please don't," Nutt told the officer while the red laser light on the end of Shannon's stun gun bounced between Nutt's crotch and abdomen. Nutt eventually steps outside where he's handcuffed and taken to jail.

Nutt's attorney, Austin Kaplan confirmed the charges were later dropped against his client.

Harden, Shannon, Chief Ratliff and another cop were all indicted in January on charges related to abusing their authority in the arrest; Harden and Ratliff were fired and the other two are still suspended pending the outcomes of their cases. In July, a jury found Ratliff guilty on three misdemeanor charges -- one of "tampering with a government record" for filing a report with knowing omissions in it, and two counts of "official oppression," which we have to say is one awesome name for a criminal count. His lawyer told KXAN it was all just terrible, terrible, because these are "complicated constitutional and legal principles that lawyers, judges and constitutional scholars cannot even agree on" and by golly, if you go accusing good cops of being oppressive just for throwing their weight around, "you are soon going to run into a situation where officers will hesitate to act" and before you know it a cop or an innocent civilian is gonna get kilt.

In the latest fuckery out of Llano, a Llano police officer, Mark Burke, and a Llano County Sheriff's Deputy, Duncan Roberts, were indicted August 13 with three counts of "official oppression" each -- seriously, every criminal code everywhere needs to use the term -- after they responded to a report of domestic violence with excessive force. Roberts had initially responded to the call at a home outside town, and Burke arrived as backup. They met the woman who'd complained outside the home, and she told them her domestic partner, Clay Holley, had tried to keep her and her kids from leaving after an argument, then gone back into the home and locked the door. Pretty important: At this point, the woman is not in the house, and she'd told Roberts and Burke Holley hadn't hit her.

So of course when Holley refused to open the door, Officer Dipshit and Deputy Fuckhead then tried to pick the lock and ultimately broke the door down, because damn it, they were "conducting an investigation." Yup, there's video for this one, too:

Warrant? What the hell is a warrant? And no, we don't see any crying children being hostage-rescued here, either.

We do appreciate Llano City Manager Scott Edmonson, who is a veritable firehose of clichés in an interview with KXAN:

It is what it is and you just move forward and go on [...] I haven't got into it in too much detail yet. I mean, we're just dealing with it right now [...] I don't want to get into that because I think that's going to go towards the individual cases and I don't want to go there [...] know I'm not answering your questions, and I'm not going there.

Oh, yes, and when reporters asked him if there was a "climate of corruption" in local law enforcement, he replied, "Uh, no." He followed that up with a doozy, too!

When asked if Edmonson could be certain of that given the city's done nothing to investigate that angle, Edmonson replied, "Can we be sure of anything?"

Life is a mystery. Everyone must stand alone. I hear the cops call my name, and it feels like home...invasion.

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[KXAN-TV / KXAN]

Doktor Zoom

Doktor Zoom's real name is Marty Kelley, and he lives in the wilds of Boise, Idaho. He is not a medical doctor, but does have a real PhD in Rhetoric. You should definitely donate some money to this little mommyblog where he has finally found acceptance and cat pictures. He is on maternity leave until 2033. Here is his Twitter, also. His quest to avoid prolixity is not going so great.

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OOH BOY HOWDY, The Federalist is on fire this week! Just this morning we told you about the hilarious Federalist column where one neo-Nazi's mom and dad are Democrats, ipso facto QED NEO-NAZIS ARE THE REAL LIBERALS, FUCKERS! Is America's dumbest woman whose name doesn't rhyme with Cara Snailin' over there being a total fuckin' Mollie Hemingway right now? Sadly, she blocked us on Twitter, so how could we possibly know? The answer is WE DON'T CARE.

But now we have a gem of the Federalist genre, an article written by a whiny-ass gay quisling conservative, who would like to chew on his blankie and whine about how much harder it is out there for a conservative than it is for a gay person. This is a subject we happen to have some knowledge about, because we are super gay! And we know a lot about conservatives, both firsthand -- being subjected to them every single one of our almost four decades of life -- and also from covering extremist right-wing Christians for a very long time. Particularly the kind that tell young, impressionable, vulnerable gay kids that they need to pray away the gay if they want Jesus to exercise some self control and refrain from sending them to a fiery hell for all eternity.

We clicked on the article with high hopes. See if you can spot why:

Keep reading... Show less
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pic via Glamour Shots, we mean this dude's old website

The House Education and Workforce Committee was all set to have a hearing today all about the horrors that a higher minimum wage would wreak on the economy. Horrors like rich people being slightly less rich. Horrors like business owners claiming they will have to fire people and charge $15 for a McChicken if forced to pay workers a living wage, which they won't actually do because no one will buy a $15 McChicken and they would go out of business if they tried that, and they already don't hire more people than the bare minimum they can get away with. Horrors like poor people not being "motivated" to work harder and get better jobs that do not pay them an amount no human being could possibly live on.

Alas, as Politico reports, it was not to be, as committee members discovered their big witness for the hearing, San Diego State University economist Joseph Sabia (pictured above in a Glamour Shot from his archived website), was kind of a wacko.

Sabia, as it turns out, once had a blog called "No Shades Of Gray," in which he wrote many columns of an extremely homophobic and sexist persuasion. In one of these columns, in 2002, Sabia was very mad about one man's lawsuit against several fast food giants for contributing to his health and obesity problems by failing to disclose the nutritional information of the food they sold. In retrospect, I think most people are now on board with these chains being required to post calorie counts and other nutritional information, but in 2002, Sabia was convinced that requiring them to do this would be an assault on freedom for all Americans everywhere. His response to this was to try and attempt a Jonathan Swift posture and suggest taxing gay sex, which he claimed leads to "disastrous health consequences."

Because sure, that's the same thing, basically.


In gay sex, we have an activity that is clearly leading to disastrous health consequences. What rational person would engage in this sort of activity? There is only one solution - let's tax it.

"Come on, Sabia," you say, "how are you going to enforce these taxes? Are you going to send government officials to peep into everyone's bedroom?"

Eventually. But first we have to mount the assault on Big Gay (no, I am not talking about Rosie O'Donnell). We can tax gay nightclubs, websites, personal ads, sexual paraphernalia, and so forth. Talk about a sin tax!!! We can cripple gay-related industries and get them right where we want them. All gay clubs will have to feature huge, flashing warning signs like "CAUTION: Entering this nightclub may increase your chance of contracting STDs and dying."

Big Gay clearly lures people into trying their "product" without discussing the risks to mind, body, and soul. The average Joe on the street does not understand all of the possible bad outcomes. I can almost hear him now:

"They said '100 percent hotties.' I thought that meant it was fun. I thought gay sex was OK…Now I have all these diseases. Big Gay has wrecked my life."

In the immoral words of Warren G, "Regulators!! Mount up!"

EXTREME SHUDDER.

In another 2002 article, classily titled "College Girls: Unpaid Whores," Sabia laments that feminists have led college girls to stop trying to be like the Holy Virgin Mary and instead to aspire to be more like that hussy Ally McBeal.

No, really.

As women have strayed from the church, they have replaced what is holy with what is temporally pleasing. For Catholics, the model woman is Mary, the virgin Mother of God. She is beloved by the faithful for her unflappable devotion to and trust in God, her nurturing of the Son of Man, and her deep love for all humanity.

Today's college girl looks to Ally McBeal, the trollops of Sex in the City, and the floozies on Friends to set their moral compasses.

The sad truth is that college girls are so desperate to find love that they are willing to degrade themselves to get it. But true love can only be understood in the context of the Word of God. Any other notion of "love" is secular and, by definition, limited and finite.

Not only that, but instead of going to college to find a husband, they have boyfriends. Boyfriends they have S-E-X with. And sometimes, not even that. Sometimes they have sex with people just because they want to have sex with people, and not even in exchange for Valentine's Day cards or money!


Additionally, other sex-based relationships have become commonplace. In recent years, a new and disturbing arrangement known as "friends with benefits" has emerged. In this arrangement, men are not even forced to perform the normal duties of boyfriends, i.e. flowers, Valentine's Day cards, rides to the abortion clinic, etc. Instead, girls consider these guys "just friends" whom they happen to screw every now and again. No strings, no attachments, no dinners. Just sex when they feel like it.

This type of arrangement is the next logical step in the direction that young women have drifted in the last few decades. These women have become unpaid whores. At least prostitutes made a buck off of their trade. These women just give it away.

How cute! He was like the ur-incel, basically.

Anyway, following the discovery of the posts, the House Education and Workforce Committee's GOP communications director Kelley McNabb told Politico that "members were uncomfortable moving forward on the hearing." A more optimistic person might think this was a step forward, that maybe those committee members actually thought it was bad to suggest that being gay means being a disease-ridden monster or that college girls are whores, but it's probably more to avoid embarrassment than anything else. Guess they'll have to start from scratch and find a crappy economist who will tell them what they want to hear about the minimum wage but who doesn't have an embarrassing Geocities blog in their past. Good luck with that!

[Politico]

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