Police Abuse

Rich Driver = Poor Driver, Beggarman = Cop


From our hideous neighbors to the north, an amusing/horrifying example of some mighty trifling police work, the "hobocop" campaign, as explained in the Toronto Sun:

@PCArsenault's Twitter/Toronto Sun

Const. Brian Kellar, a one time officer of the month, was dressed as a homeless person — complete with hat, hood and cardboard sign — who appeared to be begging for money.

But what he and another officer were really doing this week was approaching motorists to determine if they were on, or touching, their smart phones.

Slick manoeuvre. Innovative.

On one side of the sign, it read: "I've got High Hopes — Frank Sinatra."

On the other was written the more ominous "Hello I am a Police Officer: If you are reading this you are about to get a cellphone ticket."…

It's also quite a ding to the offenders and a windfall for government. Thanks to one stroke of the pen of a judge, the fine as of March 18 went from $155 to $280.

We should remember that what starts as simple tickets can turn into some serious problems in people's lives, especially those lacking a fair amount of disposable cash or those who just don't have their shit together about getting things in the mail on time. See my earlier Reason article, "Petty Law Enforcement vs. The Poor."

NEXT: Economist Tyler Cowen Pepper Sprayed While Teaching Class at George Mason University

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  1. That’s going to put a dent in bum donations, eh?

    1. Nicely played.

  2. Be a real shame if someone swerved…..

  3. Yglesias and Ezra Klein start lying early and often at Vox.

    This is the first sentence of a video about the national debt:

    The United States’s national debt is 12.5 trillion dollars.

    It’s 17 trillion.

    I love the hemming and hawing they do about this blog post calling them on their bullshit. They were obviously wrong, but don’t expect these avatars of journalism to admit it.

    That’s not even taking into account what a commenter rightfully mentions:

    At some point in the future, Americans will grasp the words “Total Present Value of Future Expenditures in Excess of Future Revenue”

    Fiscal Year 2013 P.63

    39.696 Trillion Dollars. This includes future S.S., Medicare, Railroad Retirement and Black Lung payouts to present and future retirees. These funds will need to be paid out, future retirees don’t just go away quietly.

    And take it from someone who escaped credit card hell ? interest is the killer. It will devour the necessary parts of any budget. But I survived, learned my lesson, and finally grew up.

    Sad thing is that Americans are the laziest, stupidist people on the face of the Earth. They’ll listen to this idiot every time. Path of least resistance, it’s easier.

    1. J.D. put up a post about their video earlier. Sadbeard flatly states that debt isn’t a problem because the United States can never run out of money since it prints it.

      1. My corporation can never go bankrupt because it can always issue more stock!

        1. I’ll always have money to spend if I don’t run out of checks!

        2. How can I be bankrupt? There are still checks in my checkbook!

        3. Leo Bloom and Max Bialystock approve.

          1. But not Ulla.

            Poor Ulla, the only honest one in the bunch.

  4. Tax collectors with guns.

  5. This cop is mentally-challenged? That’s why the dummy stands by the road for the state?

  6. How long before they just put up a roadblock and make every driver pay $100 to get through?

    1. You gotta pay the troll’s toll!

      1. You’re the Nightman?

    2. That is how it is done in most of the world. Fortunately we have a second amendment here. For now. That is also why the left is so anxious to get rid of the 2nd.

  7. There is a dude that knows what time it is. WOw.



  9. The only way to deal with hobocop is the ED-209.

  10. Welch is cutting it close again.

  11. Has this been posted yet?

    Professor at University of California – Santa Barbara responds to a teacher attacking a pro-life demonstrator by condemning the demonstrator.

    In the e-mail, obtained by National Review Online, Young informed students that Miller-Young’s underage victim is simply a member of “the most recent generation of true believers, self-proclaimed prophets, and provocateurs.” Young wrote that students came to him saying they felt “outrage, pain, embarrassment, fear, hurt, and feelings of harassment” because of the demonstrators.


    He wrote that “our Founding Fathers ? all white men of privilege, some even slave owners ? got it right when designing the First Amendment of the Constitution.”


    Time and time again, UCSB students have demonstrated that they understand their role in defining the character and quality of this campus community ? revealing their unwillingness to lower themselves to the tactics of those whose agenda comes wrapped in intolerance and extremism.

    “Here at UCSB, we leave it to the professors to lower themselves to the tactics of intolerance and extremism so you don’t have to!”

  12. Would that be an illegal search in this country?

  13. Certainly puts a different spin on getting the bum rap.

  14. “We should remember that what starts as simple tickets can turn into some serious problems in people’s lives,”

    If it’s really a serious problem for you, then don’t text while you’re driving. It’s dangerous. Problem solved!

    1. What about the utterly harmless practice of texting while sitting at a stoplight? Cuz that’s where the officer is.

      1. Is the car in “drive”? Then you’re driving.

  15. If it’s really a serious problem for you, then don’t text while you’re driving. It’s dangerous. Problem solved!

    Strict liability is bullshit. There is no public safety interest served by lining the coffers of the local PD with drivers’ money.

  16. He’s a cop. On foot. Dressed like a beggar, holding up a beggar’s sign.

    Just drive off. If some other cop gives chase, say, “What sign? I don’t read or believe signs held up by beggars.”

  17. Couldn’t one make a citizen’s arrest on this cop for panhandling?

  18. We’re very sore-y to entrap you, sir, but it is not very polite to disrespect the law, either, ‘eh?

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