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A lawyer debunks five myths about beating traffic tickets

By: Mark Frauenfelder

ticketIf a cop doesn’t show up for court, your ticket will be dismissed: false. If you overpay your ticket by one penny the ticket will not go on your record: false. If your ticket has a mistake it is invalid: false. If you get a ticket in another state you can ignore it: false. Attorney Steve Lehto debunks these myths and more in this Jalopnik article. His final paragraph is my favorite: Continue reading

Proposed Legalization Measure Would Create Ohio Pot Cartel

By: John Peoples

OhioCap-702x336There is more than one way to legalize adult marijuana use in these United States of America.  Perhaps buoyed by the successes of marijuana legalization ballot measures in the 2014 mid-term elections, a pro-cannabis group in Ohio is preparing a campaign to give voters the chance to amend the Ohio constitution to allow adult use of marijuana.  A couple of things separate this proposal from other pro-marijuana measure being considered across the country in the near future. One is a provision that would allow 10 unidentified people the exclusive right to cultivate and distribute marijuana in the state. Another is the timing of the proposed vote, in 2015 as opposed to 2016. Continue reading

ACLU Sues To End Almost Total White Control Over Ferguson’s Majority Black School System

By: Ian Millhiser

Marshall-Brown-e1387820338359-638x327A lawsuit filed Thursday by the American Civil Liberties Union paints a grim picture of a school district whose leadership bears little resemblance to its student body. Although “African-American students accounted for 77.1% of total enrollment in the Ferguson-Florissant School District in the 2011-2012 school year,” only one of the district’s seven school board members are black. This is the district that includes Ferguson, Missouri, where the police shooting of African American teenager Michael Brown triggered widespread protests. Continue reading

From the emergency room to the courtroom: How nonprofit hospitals are seizing patients’ wages

By: Pro Publica

Worried-Doctor-Shutterstock-800x430On the eastern edge of St. Joseph, Missouri, lies the small city’s only hospital, a landmark of brick and glass. Music from a player piano greets visitors at the main entrance, and inside, the bright hallways seem endless. Long known as Heartland Regional Medical Center, the nonprofit hospital and its system of clinics recently rebranded. Now they’re called Mosaic Life Care, because, their promotional materials say: “We offer much more than health care. We offer life care.” Two miles away, at the rear of a low-slung building is a key piece of Mosaic—Heartland’s very own for-profit debt collection agency.

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Extradition of US exiles in Cuba unlikely despite restored ties

By: Renee Lewis

assata_shakur_cuba_121814Soon after President Barack Obama announced the restoration of diplomatic ties with Havana on Wednesday, Cuba watchers began to raise questions over potential extradition orders U.S. exiles in Cuba, specifically regarding rights activist Assata Shakur — who has been living on the island for decades.   Shakur and other black activists, including Black Panther Party (BPP) founder Huey P. Newton, fled from U.S. intelligence and security agencies in the 1960s and 1970s to Cuba, which was sympathetic to socialist ideals. Now supporters of Shakur, also known as Joanne Chesimard, wonder what the future holds for the 67-year-old exile.

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