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Comment Re:50% of the budget (Score 1) 566

The article says $40 per ticket so that's 198 tickets per day. This is a problem with traffic court in general. Rarely is evidence ever presented against the accused. It's just the work of an officer vs. the driver and the officer's word is the only one that matters. Perhaps traffic court is petty compared to more serious crimes but when the government treats its people such that only they matter and whatever an officer says might be true, it's sets a dangerous mindset for a country.

Comment Re:OUTRAGEOUS cost (Score 2) 525

I had an experience very similar to his. I was given a speeding ticket while taking someone to the hospital. The doctors told me serious damage had occurred to the patients lungs because I was unable to get her there sooner. I didn't have a phone to call an ambulance where I lived so I felt I had a good defense of necessity and decided to contest the ticket. A couple months later I was in an accident caused by another vehicle. I was charged with driving with a suspended license. It turns out the officer had written my address wrong. A lawyer was able to get all the related documents which showed I had filled out the correct address but the officer did not and they sent the summons for speeding, notice of default judgement, notice of suspended license etc. to the wrong address. The lawyer told me I could file a motion to reopen the case for speeding and that I should pretty easily be able to get the driving with a suspended license charge dismissed. I presented the documents to judge that the lawyer had given me and the judge looked at me, paused and told me I had a weak defense and found me guilty. I sent in my money for appeal which the state deposited and claimed they never received and so I did not get an appeal. After that I didn't think it was worth bothering to fill out the forms to reopen judgement on the speeding ticket

Comment Re:Surprised? (Score 1) 235

I had unexpected charges on my phone bill because a company claimed I asked them to text me my fortune for a fee. I never asked to be sent any text messages so I disputed the charge. Verizon told me this was the same situation as when you call a 900 number and that there's nothing you can do about it. In their words "anyone can charge money to your phone bill and you're obligated to pay it." If they can't remove fees like this the only reason can be that they've already paid them out to the party billing your account. In this case I don't see the delay in paying the money to mgive. Besides, this is how your credit card works and you use your phone and then pay the money you owe much like a credit card.

Comment Re:highest ethical standards (Score 1) 218

I work for a labor union in the US and what you describe is the same as what we have here. I think one big benefit of unions that is often overlooked is grievances. Before I was a unionized worker I often had to deal with my boss blaming his mistakes on me and taking credit for my ideas. This kept me from getting raises and promotions as it marred my permanent record. Had I been unionized I would have been able to file a grievance and an investigation would have taken place to determine whether my story or my boss's was true. I haven't had such problems with my current job but I feel much better knowing I'm protected should anything arise. Working for the union, we encounter a lot of problems like this though. For example, we have an employee here on a visa getting paid for one month but being told he better show up for 4 months. If he does not, his family who is also here on visa could be fired and be sent back to their home country. Without a union he'd be powerless to fight this. I think part of the problem creating with the antiunion sentiment in the US is that the relatively few instances when unions are awarded to much are highly publicized while the instances when unions were able to improve conditions bordering on slavery for workers are not. Another part of the problem is that non-unionized workers tend to respond to to hearing what unionized workers get with thoughts such as "That's not fair. Look at how much worse what I'm getting is and look at what they've demanded" instead of "That's not fair, we should unionize and get the same benefits."

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