Brickbat: Facebook Friends


A 12-year-old girl has sued Minnesota's Minnewaska School District claiming that officials at her middle school punished her for posts she made on her Facebook page and forced her, with the help of local law enforcement, to reveal the password and log in information to her Facebook and email accounts. The lawsuit claims the school gave her detention for posting that one of the hall monitors was mean to her and later gave her in-school suspension for a post asking who had turned her in.

Brickbat Archive

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  1. Brickbats is not the same without Balko.

    1. Brickbats is not the same without Balko.

      No, but it’s nice to see them migrated to H&R once in a while so that we can comment on them. Their sheer outrageousness elicits some interesting commentary.

  2. Here’s a brickbat for you:

    Sarbanes-Oxley is killing the IPO market due to the costs it imposes:

    Economist Peter Iliev of Pennsylvania State University studied 301 small publicly traded companies. Though the companies were roughly the same size, some were subject to Sarbanes-Oxley, and some weren’t (there was an exemption based on firms’ market value). Accounting and auditing expenses at the covered firms were much higher; their stock market value was about 18 percent lower, Iliev found. The stock market, he wrote, treats the Sarbanes-Oxley compliance costs “to be a permanent tax on firms.”….._blog.html

    The column includes some defenses of SOX that struck me as feeble. An 18% hit to market cap is HUGE.

    1. Every single upper management person I know bitches about that law.

      1. So do all of us in the trenches. Anytime some stupid, arcane, feeble-minded edict comes down – it’s because of SOX.

    2. Maybe some kind of SOX for government spending legislation and jail time for anyone who voted for it if it costs more than we “certified” would be helpful.

  3. Fire every administrator and law enforcement official involved in this.

    1. please. NO public employee gets fired unless a live boy or dead girl is involved. These are people who believe your child belongs to them. All day. Every day.

      1. Well, one can dream. In the meantime, I’ll keep not sending my kids to public school.

        1. “To call something public is to define it as dirty, insufficient, and hazardous. The ultimate paradigm of social spending is the public restroom.”
          -P.J. O’Rourke

  4. Howabout another:

    Obama – thuggish President, or most thuggish President?

    In a 2009 commencement speech at Arizona State, the president joked about using the IRS as an enforcement agent for dissenters. Little did I know that less than three years later the IRS would be asking groups about their association with . . . me.

    The American Center for Law and Justice has reported that the IRS is targeting the nonprofit tax status of Tea Party and liberty groups across the nation. These conservative groups are now experiencing the targeted enforcement the President “joked” about.…..-me/377566

    1. That’s got to be racist.

      1. The IRS is doing this because they work for the people, and they are only doing this because it is necessary.

    2. Obama – thuggish President, or most thuggish President?

      FDR had Japanese internment camps….long way from Obama thugishness to internment camps.

      Plus the Democrats use to use the KKK to lynch Republicans organizing in the south.

  5. If she is going to fight this on Constitutional grounds, I would rather not see her attempt to frame this as a First Amendment issue. She should use this one, instead: Neither slavery nor involuntary servitude, except as a punishment for crime whereof the party shall have been duly convicted, shall exist within the United States, or any place subject to their jurisdiction.

    1. I dunno, agents of the state punishing someone for something they wrote sounds pretty Firsty to me.

    2. “COUGH UP THAT PASSWORD or we’ll torture your parents!” The State will frame it as a Homeland Security issue, you know, challenging a hall monitor could have……..well obviously if Law Enforcement was involved…..I wonder if she’ll end up on the terror watch list.

  6. the president joked about using the IRS as an enforcement agent for dissenters.

    OBAMA 2012

    1. That’s a good point–Nixon didn’t get caught until his second term. Give Obama a chance!

    2. Obama is to Bush as Nixon was to LBJ.

      Both inherited piles of shit and made them stinkier and bigger and steamier. But in today’s political atmosphere something like Watergate would draw little attention no matter which party pulled it off. That kind of stuff is the new normal.

      1. I like that analogy. With the exception that Bush probably didn’t off as many opponents as LBJ.

  7. one of the hall monitors was mean to her

    Where’s your hall pass brah! Show me you hallpass!!!!

    1. The schools responsible for conditioning the young minds to produce papers and accept pat-downs at all checkpoints.

    2. “Beth, bear mace that guy!”

  8. agents of the state punishing someone for something they wrote sounds pretty Firsty to me.

    True enough, but I would like to see the courts compelled to address the issue of what is fundamentally a claim of ownership over students; how else would you classify an assertion of geographically unrestricted twenty four hour a day control?

  9. Dude I think I will have whatever it is that he is smoking!

  10. My stepson just got suspended for three days because some kid came and punched him in the head.

    He didn’t hit the kid back because he didn’t want to get in trouble, so he just pushed him off.

    Little did he know that the policy is to suspend everyone, even if they didn’t do anything.

    So if that kid hits him again, he’s gonna go medieval on his ass.

    Why not? He’s gonna get suspended anyway.

    1. medieval on his ass

      He should only slug the kid out. Save the raping for the principal.

    2. (Head explodes)

      1. I told a coworker and she said her grandson got suspended because two bigger kids hauled him into the bathroom and beat him bloody.

        This time the other kids did not get suspended because one of their mommies is on the school board.

        Makes you want to murderize someone.

        1. My reaction would not be good. I’m not sure how I would get even, but I would get even (and then some).

          1. We like stories like this, because it shows how wrong it is to defend yourself. Just lie there and take the beating.

        2. You’ve got to be shitting me.


    3. I told both of my sons from day one that they could defend themselves at school because I used to be a teacher and our school had the same stupid policy.

      In fact, I told them I would take the day off from work and we would do something fun.

      1. My son has been taught that if he ever starts a fight, he’ll have to deal with me. He was also taught that if someone else starts it and he doesn’t finish it, he’ll have to deal with my wife.

    4. People in the public sector seem to fetishize policy.

      1. The power to create a piece of paper that all must obey is a temptation to all bureaucrats and do-nothings.

      2. They totally do. It saves them from making decisions.
        When something happens they dig out a policy manual and look up what to do.
        Now they can’t be blamed, because they’re just following policy.

        Policy being words that come down from *genuflect with teary eyes* authority.

      3. As a former teacher, it has everything to do with edicts from the superintendent’s office. They don’t want to do their jobs by actually determining who may have been acting in self defense.

        1. If that’s a universal rule, it probably came down from the Department of Education.

          1. Are you going to challenge the suspension? What does your wife say about it?

            1. Can’t do much of anything.
              He lives with his father during the week. We only have him on weekends. My wife says she’ll bring it up at the next parent teacher conference, but knows that it won’t do any good. Policy is policy.

              His father, a cop, doesn’t give much of a shit what the rules are as long as he can puff out his chest and intimidate people when he enforces them.

              1. That sucks.

                This shit really pisses me off. Its one thing to be outraged by the big picture or particular incidents like Jose Guerena or Kelly THomas or Ryan Fredericks or the kandahar killing spree or Duke La Crosse (particularly the way Duke itself fucked those kids) but when its shit like this………..

                BTW, I presume your stepson and his dad know not of your fancy for maryjane?

                1. That fancy is not much of a fancy anymore.

                  It’s one of those things where if I’m offered I’ll likely accept, but it is not something I will seek out.

              2. “My wife says she’ll bring it up at the next parent teacher conference, but knows that it won’t do any good. Policy is policy.”

                Due respect, this is nonsense.

                I sued and won easily for a very similar situation (almost identical really, just more guys jumped me) many years ago when suing was harder.

                The children are under their supervision, make them pay for their lack of responsibility.

                1. Also, you always have the option to file criminal charges.

                  It’s obviously too late now, but the schools have no way to do anything about this.

                  Prosecute the motherfuckers who jumped him.

                  1. How do you suggest doing this when his father is his official guardian since we only have him part time, and I can’t afford to fix the blown head gasket on the car let alone hire a fucking attorney.

                    1. “I can’t afford to fix the blown head gasket on the car let alone hire a fucking attorney.”

                      My attorney did it on contingency, because it was such clear cut negligence.

                      But, you can play helpless victim of the state if you like.

                      Have a nice day.

                    2. It was a serious question. No need to be an asshole about it. My experience with attorneys has always been one of “How much money do you have in the bank? Mm, hm. Goodbye.”

                    3. “No need to be an asshole about it. ”

                      “”I can’t afford to fix the blown head gasket on the car let alone hire a fucking attorney.””

                      Assholery begets assholery.

                    4. Get a different handle, asshole.

                    5. I can’t afford to fix the blown head gasket on the car let alone hire a fucking attorney.

                      Maybe spend less time here every day telling people how you claim you heard a cop say he wanted to fuck you up, and use that wasted time to get a second/better job.

                  2. Also, you always have the option to file criminal charges.

                    His father is a cop. I’m sure that if that was an option that he would have done so already.

        2. It’s all about covering your ass, if you don’t make a decision that you can be held liable for, then you get to keep your job indefinitely in a standard bureaucracy.

          It’s formalized cowardice.

    5. I recall removing part of some kid’s scalp in third grade because he called my mother stupid. The teacher found out what the other kid said and no punishment was doled out.

      Today, I have a hard time imagining the same outcome.

      1. I still have a couple grey marks on my knee where the principal’s son stabbed me with a pencil.

        He likely bears a similar mark on his sternum where I stabbed him back.

        Nothing else happened.

      2. I was bullied along with some others for about 3 weeks in middle school until we figured out that 3 > 1.

        So we made a plan, got our story straight and beat the kid up on the school bus. When we were hauled into the office and we all told the same story: “He fell.”

        Bullying was no longer an issue.

      3. I was walking home from school, probably about third grade, when a little ganglet of kids who had been giving me a hard time followed me and were mouthing off.

        Seeing a convenient Coke bottle on the ground, I picked it up and winged it at them, as hard as I could. Clocked one of them right on the noggin. Had to hurt like hell. They ran off.

        I don’t recall it ever being mentioned by anyone.

        1. I was being harassed by a school bus driver, a senior in high school, when I was in eighth grade. He was mouthing off, threatening me, so I picked up a rock and threw it at the bus mirror he was standing beside and I broke it. He screamed, ‘why the Hell did you do that?’

          I told him, ‘they are going to ask why I threw a rock at you.’

          He made up a story about driving behind a dump truck to cover up the incident and he never gave me any shit after that.

      4. It’s not just with kids either. Used to if you got into a confrontation in bar or something you’d just go out back and 9 times out of 10 one of the “tuff gais” involved would back down. If there was a fight, whoever won would just go home and that usually the end of it. Now someone’s going to call the cops and both parties are going to end up in jail for at least a night. And if you won the fight, you’d better hope there was a witness willing to make a statement that the other guy started it (or better yet security camera footage).

    6. Egalitarianism – its’s whats for dinner. Equal punishments for unequal actions. No wonder our society is screwed up.

      1. Get used to it.

    7. Something similar happened to me in high school. There was a fight going on in the hall, as I turned the corner (not knowing WTF was going on) I walked right into it and one of the fighers was pushed back toward where I was and I got an elbow in the face which broke my nose. I wound up with an in school suspension for my troubles.

    8. My daughter (she’s 11) has never been in trouble at school and has never had any sort of altercation. Still, I’ve told her that if another kid hits her, she’s free to defend herself as she deems necessary, and that she doesn’t have to run away or lie down and take whatever the other kid is dishing out. I told her that while I can’t promise she won’t get in trouble with the school for defending herself, she certainly won’t be in trouble with me.

    9. So, sarc, what advice have you given your li’l delinquent on fighting?

      My old man gave me two pieces of advice:

      “Don’t hit somebody in the head with your hand. Their head is hard, your hand is not.”

      “If there’s gonna be a fight, hit first. The guy who lands the first shot nearly always wins.”

      As a retired Marine who came from a seriously bad neighborhood, I was inclined to think he probably knew what he was talking about.

      1. Think I’m going to let his father, the cop, do that.

        1. I dunno that cops know squat about winning a bare-knuckle fight, what with the tasers, pepperspray, and nightsticks they use.

          I imagine being stepdad to a kid whose biological father is a cop must be a tough row.

      2. Their head is hard, your hand is not

        Depends on where you hit them and how much training you have. My Taekwon-Do indtructor (a 7th degree black belt ~40 years of training) got jumped by a couple of college kids a few months ago. The one who came up from behind and said “give me you money old man” got punched in the face once. The result: broken nose, 2 black eyes, and a dislocated jaw that had to be wired shut. His buddy ran (probably the smartest thing he ever did).

        Luckily for my instructor there was a security camera that cought the whole incident on tape.

        1. I should add: my TKD instructor’s injuries consisted of a small scrape on his middle knuckle of his left hand (which makes the impact of the punch even more impressive when take into account that he’s right handed).

          1. So, the advice is “don’t hit their head with you hand, unless you’re someone who punches people for a living”?

            I would never try to punch someone in the head, while standing toe-to-toe, during a fight outside of a “professional” setting. It’s too small of a target, can move too quickly, is actually difficult to land a blow which is worth the effort it takes, and it is a lot harder than my fists.

        2. Naturally, highly-trained fighters should go with their training.

          I do recall my 8th-dan aikido instructor (trained with Morihei Ueshiba and everything) telling us that he and his 7th-dan wife preferred guns for self-defense.

    10. This policy existed for military officers. Its purpose was to stop crybabies from complaining to their CO when some lieutenant (TELLMOFF) beat the fuck out of them.

  11. the policy is to suspend everyone, even if they didn’t do anything.

    Judgement is Oppression!

  12. I’d like to ask the subject administrators if they think a rape victim should get an equal prison sentence as the rapist.

    1. If that’s what policy says, then yes.

      1. Yeah, much easier than thinking.

        1. So if a student beats the shit out of his teacher, does the teacher get fired?

          1. Rules do not apply to those tasked with enforcing them.

  13. Aren’t you supposed to be 13 to use Facebook? She should consider herself lucky that they didn’t charge her criminally with violating the terms of service.

    But seriously, it is absolutely fucking disgusting that the school thinks it should anything at all to say about what a kid does outside of school. Schools have too much power over kids in school. They should not have any power over them outside of school.

    1. “She should consider herself lucky that they didn’t charge her criminally with violating the terms of service.”

      That’s not a crime and people who try to pretend it is are morons.

    2. Our school sucked in a lot of ways, but I remember them consistently telling us we could do whatever (fight, sell stuff, etc.) as long as it wasn’t on school grounds.

  14. Public education is communism.

    In Massholia, the cradle of US public education, anti-Catholic and anti-Irish bigotry informed and motivated the push for socializing the education of little Johnny and little Suzie.

    1. Do they still teach “Diversity Math” in Newton? That was one of my favorite public education stories.

      Unfortunately, my son is about to enter public schools (in Woodland Hills/LA county), and I’m terrified about what’s to come.

  15. This girl might as well get used to the idea that her “private” life is under the control of the state.

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