“Court Costs” Times Twice

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The cost of everything is going up – most especially the cost of the things you’re forced to pay for and don’t want.

Like traffic “tickets,” for instance.

It’s noteworthy that much of the violence perpetrated by government is performed under the etymological cover of such bland-sounding euphemisms. Normal people do not use such language. If you take someone else’s money using violence, you call it what it is – robbery. Ask any self-respecting mugger.

But government likes to pretend it isn’t robbing you as it does so. Hence such terms as “taxes” and “fees” and “tickets.” The latter being what you get when you are “pulled over” – another government term designed to etymologically attenuate the being waylaid at gunpoint by an armed government worker – and handed an extortion note by the latter, ostensibly because you have committed a “traffic offense.”

No one ever asks who has been “offended.” Much less how “traffic” can be offended.

In fact, using honest language, what has occurred is that you have been handed a demand order – a kind of extortion note, bureaucratized – by an armed agent of the bureaucracy that orders you to pay a sum of money as punishment for doing something the government has declared you may not.

This “may not” can be any of dozens of different things, none of them being moral affronts in that the doing of them (as such) does not do anything, in terms of causing harm to anyone else. They are merely “illegal,” the  term used by government to describe something it will punish you for doing.

Such as talking on a sail fawn while driving, for instance.

It is legal, actually, to talk. Just not to hold while talking. It’s an example of the arbitrariness of the thing. Even more so the absurdity of the thing. It is not only legal to tap/swipe the screen that is built into the dashboard of almost every new car, it is legal for the car companies to put these touchscreens in new cars. But it is an “offense” to tap/swipe the touchscreen you carry with you into the car.

The government says the latter is “distracting” while the former is – somehow – not. Either way, there is no metric defining “distraction” – in terms of your driving. Of a piece with what is styled “drunk” driving, which you can be convicted of doing irrespective of your driving – which is entirely incidental. A person can be a terrible driver and so long as they are “sober” – defined by the government as having less than a certain arbitrary blood-alcohol content (BAC) they are subject to much gentler treatment for actually causing harm, as by wandering over the double yellow and into the path of another car.

Anyhow, your libertarian car guy was recently handed a “ticket” for the “offense” of having a sail fawn in his hand while driving. The armed government worker had nothing bad to say about my driving. And had I gone to court to contest the charge, the latter would have been immaterial.

I probably ought to have gone to court. It would at least have saved my $30 – which was added to the $70 the court imposes in “costs.” The additional “$30 being imposed for “tried in absence.” But – wait a minute! – I thought I paid the court for its “costs” (i.e., the less-than-30-seconds it took for the traffic court judge to stamp the ticket “guilty”) to the tune of $70?

Now another $30 piled on for not wasting half a day in court to wait my turn to stand in front of the judge and be told “guilty” in person? I saved the court “costs” by not showing up.

It ought to have given me a discount.

Instead the “fine” for the “offense” of holding my sail phone in view of a cop while driving rose from $125 – the prescribed punishment for doing this, irrespective of any harm caused to anyone and never mind that my driving (as such) was never at issue – to $230. The “court costs” – times twice – costing nearly as much as the “fine” for the “offense” itself!

It’s enough to make a self-respecting mugger blush.

The court also charges what it styles a “convenience fee” of 4 percent of the total “fine” if you use a credit card to pay. At least that portion of the grabby handing is avoidable.

The rest, of course, is not.

Well, one could avoid paying the $30 in times-twice court costs by showing up to be “tried” in person – another etymological affront given there is no trial. You are called up to stand in front of a judge who takes whatever the cop says as “evidence” against you – while whatever you say is dismissed out-of-hand by the judge as “hearsay.”

Guilty. Next.

It takes the judge about 30 seconds. It cost you at least half a day. Which means it costs you more than $30 to show up to avoid being relieved of $30 in times-twice costs imposed by the court.

These costs approach the exorbitant – compounding the injustice. It was bad enough, in the Before Time, to get a “ticket” for some pettifoggery “offense.” But at least the fine wasn’t times-twiced by the court, as is apparently becoming common practice.

Meanwhile, the costs imposed on actual street muggers – I mean those lacking badges – are less than those imposed upon people who’ve robbed no one at all but are forced to pay robbers with badges.

And the courts that officialize it all.

. . .

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56 COMMENTS

  1. Greetings, Eric,

    You know these black hearted “traffic court” faggots in the black robes aren’t actually “judges” as they are part of the executive branch. They are administrators. Just sayin’.

  2. Wait until the central bank digital currency kicks in, Eric. The Feds will simply shut off your money until you comply, or take whatever the hell amount they want out, and there is nothing you (or any of us) will be able to do about it. It is a horrible thought to contemplate what we are soon to be facing in that regards, as it will affect every single area of our life. Including stupid traffic tickets.

  3. I think a lot of these laws are intended to add insult to injury. You wreck your car because you were yakking on the phone, the cop tickets you and that determines who’s at fault. But then we got an overabundance of police, and they needed something to do. So why not go after the low hanging fruit of drivers? 99% of drivers aren’t going to put the cop in a dangerous situation (pulling over in an unsafe spot not withstanding), so it’s easy duty and lucrative too. And because it’s a hassle and a technicality most people will take the “just pay it and move on” path of least resistance.

  4. I once contested a charge of not coming to a complete stop at a stop sign.
    I took pictures of the area showing the officer could not have seen hat he claimed to have seen
    Then the road construction took out the intersection

    When we arrived in court I presented all the evidence. The Judge said he wasn’t sure (beyond a reasonable doubt) and said he would investigate himself. Later a judgment was mailed with guilty even though the Judge could not have seen the intersection as now it was gone.

    I appealed. This new Judge stated I had a right to a vigorous defense. I did not have any right or expectation a judge would listen. Guilty until proven guilty

    Got to Love Gubmint

  5. Time is our most important asset. I spent a lot of it in court during the 90s (family court) which if you don’t know is the ultimate in rape culture, at least in the direction of men. Have vowed to stay away since, and so far been very lucky. I came close to getting nailed last week, and had one of my better angels looking out for me. So many bunny holes in the court system with the all tricks of the bar played on the laymen. Best avoid whenever possible.

    I usually leave my analogue version at home when I’m out, although, truth be told, when your out seems the most appropriate time to carry the ole Sail Fawn. Seems most appropriate for emergencies and such. I’m still one of these nutters that believes they, however they are, want us dead and could possibly use the EMFs emitted by Sail Fawns to that end.

  6. ‘No one ever asks who has been “offended.” Much less how “traffic” can be offended.’ -EP

    Hahaha, I’m going to have to ask the AGW this the next time I am waylaid at gunpoint.

    Also, the mugger typically is sated by what is in your wallet, and doesn’t make you go to the bank to get a sum of money you’d rarely or never carry with you.

  7. I became a cop for a year in illinois in 2022 (I applied in 2019, so it was a bit different then) but the environment is too legally hostile and I have a tendency to over focus on a task exposing myself to getting killed too often, so I was out.
    That said, I tried to be the libertarian cop mainly focusing on property damage and injuries. Its some of the processes that are the problem, and having elections stolen making new edicts doesn’t help either. I can say that I directly saved a life from a drug overdose….a 50+ year old woman with a long criminal history and no job will live on!
    I was really irritated that the village was getting a $500 fee for towing during arrests of drivers. So the result was we had to make physical arrests for some dumb traffic stuff in the village boundary and tow the person’s car just to get that fee. Outside the village we would not transport for those same things if it could be a misdemeanor ticket arrest served on site. The person was brought to the station handcuffed only to be given a ticket and being sent out an hour later. I felt so bad for this woman in a minor crash at her apartment complex entrance with no license and no insurance I was practically apologizing and giving her the limo treatment to the station. I told her how to get everything in order for court and the judge threw out my tickets as a result, but it was still a waste of time for her. Stuff like this happens all over.

    • Hey Anchar,

      It’d be good to have someone like you around to give us the inside baseball, and perhaps some tips?

      Also, I assume that if you get too libertarian in your policing, they have ways to root you out. Those who seem to thrive in the role tend to have authoritarian personalities, though not always. But I also would think they tend to like those who are good revenue-“earners”, i.e. those who give a lot of tickets.

      • I was in a small department of less than 20 people including the chief and supervisors near chicago, but not in crook county. I dont think I would be rooted out, there was also no ticket requirement, but they said you should be able to get at least 1 per day. It is a business for any town. Each officer has their ‘thing’ they watch for, as well as what calls the universe gives them. I tended to attract the dead- I dealt with 6 when I was there, and oddly 2 red light runners who were always next to me when they ran the light. I didnt cite either one for their circumstance, but they got warnings. Another officer always attracted DUIs- legit ones, another always got domestics, another got overdoses.
        Each department has their area of focus based on what a town wants. The law is the law, but for example, one town may get speeders at 5mph over, another may not bother until over 15 over and then its just a warning. I can say this, be polite and respectful, even if you disagree. Admit nothing about drinking, decline searches, decline alcohol sobriety tests respectfully, and don’t put on a show for the body cam. Also, don’t move around all over in the car when they pull you over. It is all case building. Just stand still and be quiet and request to leave. The officer may not want you to drive if you are tipsy but they cannot case build, so they may call for a cab instead or give you a ride home if youre close. Take that option if you need to, we had a tipsy DUI attorney that did that lol. For smaller stuff like a turn signal, cell phone, or seat belt, it may be beneficial to admit guilt and apologize, say you had stuff on your mind and slipped up or something. That often got the person just a verbal warning, sometimes written so long as its not an unconstitutional checkpoint for those things (we never did checkpooints). Again, depends on the department. In Illinois, marijuana DUI, you dont have a choice in doing a field sobriety test. The officer can require it or you get suspended.

  8. And thus – the real reason we have cops (or at least so many).

    Their job is to keep us in fear. Rarely do they prevent any crimes, rarely do they solve them (or care to).

    Drivers are the low hanging fruit by which other “crimes” can easily be found, since they don’t have justification to stop and search us during other daily activities.

    How many people are overjoyed to see a cop vs those who hope they don’t bother to harass them? That’s all you need to know about what the job of a cop is.

  9. Inspection sticker, check

    Driver’s license, check

    Insurance card, check

    Registration card, check

    License fees paid in full, check

    Taxes paid on property ownership of vehicles, check

    Indulgences paid to the Pope, check

    Gotta have at least 15 pieces of flare to qualify as an enslaved prisoner inside your own vehicle.

    AARP membership, check

    AAA membership, check

    State Parks sticker, check

    National Parks pass, check

    Express Toll digital pass, check

    NRA membership sticker, check

    A baker’s dozen is enough.

    • Love it. I did have an NRA membership until I realized the weasels. I have some of the others. But the list makes me laugh. :).

  10. Last time I was reading the local police blotter, I noticed that a guy was pulled over for operating a vehicle without a license. Then they conveniently found a drug pipe or something. How did they know the guy didn’t have a license? Don’t they pull you over then find out? I think this is what all the traffic cams are doing, scanning faces to scrub against the now required digital photos on licenses in real time and then notifying police in the area regarding any potential violations. This might include being seen using a sail fawn.

    • They know because a suspended license will show on a license plate return, either because the department has auto readers doing a passive scan or the cop entered it. Cops can enter passively on anyone (at least in Illinois), but often they will check out a plate for a minor infraction like few mph over with no intention of doing a speeding ticket, simply to find something better or move on. With a suspended license listed, they can then pull the person over to check if the suspended person is driving. Per the courts, this is permissible and if it is not the suspended driver, they will be let go assuming no other issues and the person pulled over doesn’t self incriminate. Cell phone violations are still done the old fashion way by line of sight with the officer.

      • So they associate licenses with plates, via registration I assume, and know when one doesn’t match up. Interesting. The plate readers are everywhere as well.

        • It is not known if it doesn’t match up, that is what the stop is for. The general assumption is the registered owner is the driver. Hence a suspended license driver who loans a car to a friend will get a friend pulled over who is not suspended simply for the check.
          Now, if its an obvious difference from owner to driver, like a man vs woman, the officer will look and see and not pull the person over for that.

  11. I’ve been pulled over twice by AGWs who thought I was talking on a cell phone, when in fact I was resting my left elbow on the door frame, and my head on my left hand.

    One cop was actually a decent fellow, and we had a pleasant chat, mostly about nothing in particular. He found it mildly amusing that I was not carrying a cell phone, that he was mistaken, and that was the end of it.

    The other “little piggie,” however, was a piece of work. He basically did not believe me when I told him I did not own a cell phone, saying, “Well, you must be the only person on Earth who doesn’t.” Trying to keep a straight face, I responded, “That may be so, but it is the truth.”

    At which point, he puffed himself up and declared, “Well, if you’re lying to me, you’ll have to answer to Saint Peter.” (Te lo juro, that is what he actually said.) I managed to keep from laughing, but everyone I’ve told the story to has found it amusing. The way I see it, if I do have to “answer to Saint Peter,” this incident will be the least of my worries.

    Ironically, I was an early adopter of cell phone technology, back when they were called “car phones,” and I still have a Motorola transceiver (the size of a library book) bolted to the bulkhead behind the seat of my ’89 F150, although i have not had cell service for many years.

  12. This very morning, two little piggies apparently thought they had me but then thought better of it. I flew around a corner to beat the (perpendicular) light changing and, looking back in mirror, whattaya know! Waiting at the perpendicular light… morning piggy boy!

    Then, one block down that road, the other swine that was posted up at one of their favorite speed traps, jumped right out and next to me. Of course, as soon as I saw the first one, I made sure to go 56 mph (on a 55 mph limit) as I merged onto the lane.

    The speed trap swine followed along next to me for quite some time at 56mph. They never drive the speed limit around here! And eventually the pig that was at the light came up behind me.

    I made sure to laugh with uproar and yell “morning piggies! not today!!” as I turned off to go to work two blocks later.

  13. Hi Ya Eric!
    Sorry to hear that you got mulcted by the Irish Mafia. I’m assuming this happened while you were driving a press car? When I saw the subject of this article, I was hoping that it hadn’t happened while you were driving your own vehicle, ’cause I remember those articles in the recent past in which you mentioned forgoing insurance and current ‘protection’ errr…registration- and I was imagining what THAT would cost you had your encounter with Don-Clancy-one.

    • Hi Nunz,

      Yup – it happened while I was driving the Ram TRX a few months ago (court date was a few days ago). I don’t generally use the stupid sail fawn while driving but I needed to check for a text and that’s when I had the bad luck to pass an AGW, who came around and after me. I understand some people think it’s always and necessarily “dangerous” to so much as touch a sail fawn while driving (never mind people touching the touchscreen). And possibly it is, sometimes – for some people.

      I prefer a more objective standard – such as evidence of sloppy/inept driving. If I had wandered across the double yellow or something like that, ok – I would not grouse about the fine (and costs). But I resent being held to an arbitrary, one-size-fits-all (and dumbed down) standard.

      I’m sure Green disagrees with me!

  14. Ugh: I just got pinched in Middleburg, VA, quite a cute and bucolic little town, with *one* stoplight, but a town police dept. No inspection sticker. Yes, I did take it off, and was thinking I could fly under the radar on this, but no… Wow, the visual acuity on those guys! Eh, my own doing… I drive too much (30+k miles/year) to not have my cars up to snuff… Wonder how much that will cost me…

    • Hi MDP,

      That sucks! I know Middleburg; used to live in Loudoun. I remember having to be on high alert for such as just happened to you. What a petty, pettifogging piece of (literally) highway robbery. I’m sorry they got you.

    • Hi MDP,

      I know Middleburg well. There are many little alcoves all up and down Route 50 where they hunker down and you can’t see them until it is too late.

      Do you have the Wave app on your phone? It is a godsend for notifying you about hidden patrol cars. It also lets you know of objects in the road, cars on the shoulder, etc. It saved us many a ticket in Florida where the police setup speed traps up and down the Space Coast. In one mile outside Cocoa Beach there were four cops with radar detectors aimed at ongoing traffic. We first thought they were looking for someone, but nope, just out of staters exceeding the speed limit.

        • Waze is great, I never take a long trip without it. I don’t bother around town because I know generally where they tend to be, and I usually take it pretty easy anyway. It’s a must have on the highway though

  15. There is another side to the story. I have been hit twice on my motorcycle and once in my truck from people on their sail fone. They all apologized but hey a damn screw on a HD can cost $10. The last idiot rear ended my truck, said he actually forgot about the brake. When we pulled over into a parking lot he was still yapping away. He looked (as they all do today) to be about 20 going on 12. I just told him to forget it.

    Yes I understand no one on this blog caused damage to my property but the law was passed as a preventative measure because so many cannot put that sail fone down even for one second. It’s like ripping their arm off. It is their very life! A fellow employee comically told me ” I can’t live without my facebook and sail fone”. He had three of them. He was dead serious. Talking on it when he arrived and still talking on it when he left work.

    I see people walking along with a sail fone slapped upside their head fearful of missing an ‘important call’ while microwaving what’s left of their brain. Then if they do get a call the entire store has to suffer the important conversation as they yell into their fone.

    ‘Back in the day’ most would stop at a pay phone if something ‘really’ important needed immediate attention. Today they pick up their fone and start yapping at most mundane of conversations.

    Technology has screwed everything up. It’s a damn shame idiot laws such as this are on the books but many just don’t get it and refuse to do the common sense thing. Pull over and talk all you want. Heck, I have seen people driving watching porn.

    As for the fine,,, we all know governments at all levels are broke and are out looking for whatever money they can mulct. All they know is spend, spend, spend. Hell the useless county environmental department parasites here all drive brand spanking new $40 – $50,000 dollar vehicles.

    The new laws have not reduced the use of fones that I can tell. Everywhere I look people are yapping away. I think mafia.gov have found something more addictive than drugs.

    • Ken, in my view the fundamental problem has nothing to do with phones. It is that nobody believes that keeping their vehicles on the road and not hitting things that are in front of them is their responsibility.
      “But officer, he stopped right in the middle of my lane! What was I supposed to do?”

    • It’s not the cell-phone use that caused those accidents, it’s the careless, incompetent driving, and the drivers should be charged for that.

      • Exactly, Karalan –

        Competent drivers can multi-task (just ask a pilot). These laws are dumbed-down, one-size-fits-all regimes. They are intended to punish the competent by equating them with the incompetent.

        • Police are the MOST distracted- you have to drive, navigate, research plates/work on a laptop, know your location at all times, come up with a plan of action, operate radar, watch for people trying to attack you, sometimes almost all at once.

          Thats why these laws on cell phones are stupid and should only be ticketed after a crash was proven to happen as a result of use. That way you have harm and an accuser to face you in court.

      • The descent to the lowest common denominator continues unabated.
        “It’s not fair for you to be better than me at anything. Where’s my participation trophy?”

  16. Friends gave a big FU to the “man” several years ago via traffic court.

    Here in Central WA they were riding Harleys wearing “novelty” helmets popular at that time – small, comfortable. State Patrol pulled them over and ticketed for wearing “illegal” helmets. They perused the law and found nothing stating what was a “legal” helmet. Took a day of vacation for their day in court. Gave the judge the copies of the helmet law, said your honor we can’t find a definition of a “legal” helmet. Judge turns to the Patrolman, “well, what was your basis for these tickets, since I also see no definition of a “legal” helmet!” Stammer, stammer. “That’s enough, case(s) dismissed!” Of course the legislature added “DOT approved only” next session.

  17. The absurdity struck me recently as I was setting up Apple CarPlay for my wife’s iPhone in the new car. It essentially turns the screen in the car into an external monitor for the phone. So sitting at a traffic light you can scroll through your contacts on this screen and be legal. But scroll through the exact same contacts on that screen – using the exact same finger motions, and your exact same two eyeballs – and you’re a menace.

  18. Traffic violatons….lol…the courts dont even follow their own rules of evidence.
    “Judge, since I am being charged with a crime that may result in lose of property or liberty, I want to be represented by an attorney.” Sorry, this is a civil action, not criminal.
    “Okay, since the gov is suing me, where is the entity with standing to sue me? Where is the evidence of damages, where is the evidence that I caused those damages, and where is the evidence the damages, if they exist, are recoverable?” The officer’s testimony covers all that.
    “Judge, how can my accuser, the officer, also be the chief source of testimony against me? IF this is a civil proceding, that creates a conflict of interest and violates the rules of evidence. If the officer is the one bringing suit, and claims standing, then what recoverable damages have I caused the officer?” Gee, you are right, I never thought about it that way. Case dismissed!! Yay for freedom. Lol

    Well, that just about never happens. But its fun to fantasize.

    • That is the entire foundation of asset forfeiture. That the owner is not the criminal target, the property is the civil target. They aren’t prosecuting you, they are suing your property. It’s absurd, it’s insane, and it makes no sense, unless the intent is to steal one’s property. The largest town nearby actually writes it into their budget.

  19. Back in 2020, at the height of COVID hysteria & when then Queen Kate Brown had her draconian COVID measures in place such as face diaper mandates and NO indoor dining at restaurants, Oregon OSHA fined local restaurants that didn’t comply with her diktats. Not sure if OSHA actually went through with collecting such fines, or if those local restaurants even paid them. I don’t even know if those restaurants are still running today because of Queen Kate effectively acting like a DICTATOR for 2 years under under guise of “Protecting Public Health”. And I’ve wondered if Oregonians have forgotten 2 years of COVID tyranny under Kate Brown because last year they (allegedly) elected ANOTHER Democrat to replace Kate Brown, and given now Governor Tina Kotek’s history when she was in the Oregon Legislature, she could be WORSE than Kate Brown. So far at least though, she hasn’t tried to “Bring back mask mandates” after stating in an interview last year that she would do that if “The Science called for it”, though I’m sure there are those who want her to declare ANOTHER emergency that can be used an excuse for government to amass even MORE POWER.

    • @ John B: You’ll probably remember that drug store in eastern Oregon (in the middle of nowhere for those who aren’t familiar) who got knee-capped to the tune of 60 grand for not enforcing the mask mandate on their customers. I wanted to send them a hundred bucks to possibly help out with legal fees to fight that bitch.

      • Hi Dave,

        I almost forgot about that drug store in Eastern Oregon that was fined for not enforcing face diaper mandates. There was also a small coffee shop in Southern Oregon that was fined for not requiring employees and customers to wear face diapers. I went to that coffee shop once to support them. I’m not sure if it’s still open now, or if it’s among the many small businesses that permanently closed because arbitrary GOVERNMENT decrees deemed it “non-essential”.

  20. The courts are a farce in this country from top to bottom.

    The last ticket I go, the cop was “nice” to me and told me on the side of the road that he would write the ticket for a couple of mph lower so that the judge would allow a no-points plea bargain to a parking offense.

    In other words, he offered false testimony in court, and offered false information on the ticket.

    That’s a felony.

    I briefly contemplated arguing for total dismissal because the cop perjured himself, but I thought the better of it and paid the $125 after the judge rubber-stamped it in about fifteen seconds.

    By the way… cops are exempt from the cell-phone law, after they write your ticket for it they can go right back to their car and use their own cell phone while driving.

  21. Nearly every time I go out the local, county, or state costumed jackbooted thugs violate the very “law” that I’d be fined for. e.g. 70 in a 50 (no lights, sirens mind ya), blazing through school zones, cell phones. That’s when they’re not all packed into the local Mexican restaurant, or door-to-door with the AC on high but the windows down so they can shoot the shit.

    It’s a two-tiered “justice” system at all levels. It’s why I have empathy for the “driving while black” claim. Because “driving while white” ain’t much better.

  22. I got snagged for a violation of the Move Over law in Alabama thanks to a trap the heroes set on I-10 on the holiday weekend before July 4th at the height of the pandemic scare in Summer 2020.

    $100 ticket, which was eventually dismissed because the heroes failed to approach my car wearing masks, hands on guns, and didn’t want to appear in court to discuss the “poor optics” of the video.

    $179 in court costs, which I was forced to pay even with the ticket dismissed.

  23. They do it because they can. If a business tried that you would just shop somewhere else. But try setting up an alternate government or protest the current governments actions and they will show you what your “Constitutionally Protected Rights” are really worth to them.

    You are only “Free” to do as you are told. Sad but true.

  24. Once in New York State I got a ticket for a minor offense. Wanting to save the time suck of appearing in court, I looked for how much the ‘offense’ would cost if pled guilty, but found nothing printed on the ticket.

    When I called the county clerk to ask, she declined to say how much the fine would be. ‘Your guilty plea is not supposed to be based on the amount of the fine,’ she explained.

    ‘Oh really? So if I sign this ticket admitting guilt, the court could fine me $1,000?’

    ‘Well, no,’ she admitted. ‘The fine is not usually that high. Probably in the $100 to 150 range I would say.’

    So I pled guilty, muttering to myself, ‘Now we’ve established what the government is. It’s just a question of price.’

    Still astonished that the state plays such a stupid cat and mouse game with its citizens. Imagine a federale in Mexico holding you up for a bribe, but declining out of some honor-bound legal nicety to specify its amount. But you can’t imagine this … cuz other countries just aren’t as batshit insane as the USA.

    • Jim H: ‘Now we’ve established what the government is. It’s just a question of price.’

      At least as far as I remember that story; you might have received a pleasurable moment for your payment, .gov on the other hand does not give you any pleasure at all.

    • > I looked for how much the ‘offense’ would cost if pled guilty, but found nothing printed on the ticket.

      Different rules for different states.
      Here in California, a “traffic ticket” is actually a Promise to Appear in court, with the stipulation that signing the ticket is “not an admission of guilt.” The penalty assessed is designated as “bail,” which is forfeited if you fail to appear. My recollection (it’s been awhile) is the amount of “bail” is stipulated on the Notice to Appear, on a given date at a specific time and place, which inevitably follows the ticket.

      By “posting bail” and then not showing up in court, you are actually committing the offense of “Failure to Appear.” By failing to answer the charges against you, you will be convicted in absentia. Strangely enough, the penalty for the traffic violation(s) always equals the “bail,” and “Failure to Appear” is always overlooked, and does not result in a criminal record.

    • Hi Outlaw,

      I just watched that – and need to do something to dissipate my anger. My contempt for these buzz cut badged bastards is beyond articulation.

      While you were being Hut! Hut! Hutted! for no wearing a seatbelt, someone was being robbed (unofficially) or raped or some other such thing.

      Meanwhile, the “hero” drives at high speed to get you

  25. During the 2007-2008 Financial Crisis, that Shithole Wasteland called Nevada raised some Speeding Offences to $1000. In addition, if a Traffic Citatation were contested, Court Costs would be added even if the Victim were found “Not Guilty” (nearly impossible since Jury Trails are not allowed) or the Ticket were dismissed.

    • Hi Doug,

      Yup. This sort of thing is going to push people to just refuse to pay – because they can’t. And to resist. The fines being applied are in many cases simply beyond the means of many people to pay. What the Hell are people supposed to do? Not pay rent – not buy food – so as to pay a fine for some trumped-up “offense”?

      The assholes will say: Too bad. You should have thought of that before you did whatever it was. The problem with that being the conflation of something immoral with something illegal. If some asshole insists I wear a “mask” – and threatens to relieve me of money if I do not – then it is he (the asshole) who is committing an immoral act and I have the right to defend myself against it.

      • Given the fact that all government is based on its assumption of authority to kill you if you disobey, ALL government IS an immoral act.

      • ALWAYS show up to court! I’ve had 5 tickets in the last 30 years or so, and I beat 4 of them in court for various reasons. Cop didn’t show up, in one they had written black Pinto on the ticket when I had all the paperwork showing it was actually a blue maverick (the old car from the 70’s, not the current truck version!), and then one where they had installed a stop sign about a month before my ticket and the magistrate accepted my claim that I had been driving through there for years and there was no sign. Even the one that I lost, they reduced the fine by half and agreed to no points. I would never just write the check. You have nothing to lose and you might just get out of it.

        • Hi Floriduh,

          My usual policy is to do just that – show up. But I have no time anymore for much of anything else except work. My bikes haven’t been out in weeks. So I decided to just let it (the “ticket”) role and pay the goddamned fine.

        • RE: “You have nothing to lose”

          Sometimes, you do.

          For many people, ya gotta take a day off from work in order to be able to show up in court, so add a days wages on top of the fine.

          …That is, IF a person can even get the day off from work. Many cannot, … not without being fired, that is.

        • Similar thing happened to me awhile ago, yield sign at the bottom of an off ramp that had been there forever was changed to a stop sign. Rather than put an informational sign up beforehand stating “yield sign will become a stop sign on this date” they just changed out the sign and had a bunch of cops waiting around the corner to write out tickets as fast as they could. Just mailed in the fine since I knew going to court would be a total waste of my time. Like the saying about wrestling with a pig – you’ll get dirty and the pig enjoys it.

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