Assorted Stupidity #100

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  • The city of Flint, Michigan, just sent letters to 8,000 residents telling them that if they don’t pay for the water they haven’t been able to drink, it might take their homes. It’s tempting to say that should be good news because they wouldn’t have to live in Flint anymore, but on the other hand, people like to have homes. And water. Maybe even both?
  • According to the Toronto Sun, a police officer was allowed to keep his job after a hearing in February, which a prosecutor suggested was an unusual result given that the officer had been drunk the last time he showed up for work, which was in December 2012. The report says that “years of cat and mouse” then ensued as the department tried to reach him to discuss what had happened, which also seems unusual since they presumably have somebody there who’s good at finding and questioning people.
  • Earlier this year, a Florida man sued Verizon for acts of negligence that caused him to lose his “civil liberties and freedoms,” although the proximate cause of the loss was more likely the fraud he committed at a Verizon store. The man managed to trick a Verizon employee into “selling” him stuff via the account of a different customer with a similar name. He was later caught, convicted, and sentenced to 10 years. In the lawsuit, he alleged the employee should have realized the two IDs did not match and thereby stopped him from committing the crime. He wanted $72 million, but I’m pretty sure he didn’t get it.
  • According to this report, poet Stanley Gebhardt sued Violent J of Insane Clown Posse on March 28, accusing the latter of copyright infringement. Gebhardt says J posted a video on YouTube in which he read Gebhardt’s poem, “But You Didn’t,” without attributing it to the author. I was actually less surprised by the lawsuit than by the idea that Violent J has apparently read A Second Helping of Chicken Soup for the Soul, in which the poem was originally published.
  • A gentleman in New Zealand recently filed a formal complaint against a hospital for its delay in treating him for atrial fibrillation. That causes an irregular heartbeat which isn’t immediately critical (according to the report, at least), but does need to be treated within about 48 hours. John Griffin got fed up after being told he’d have to wait eight more hours, and he left. He’s fine now, because he treated himself—which he did by going home and touching his neighbor’s electric fence. “It gave me a decent belt,” he said, after which his ticker was “right as rain.”
  • The New Zealand Herald talked to three doctors about that one, and none of them seemed to believe grabbing an 8,000-volt electric fence to treat a heart condition was advisable. “[I]t obviously worked for him,” one said, “which is really quite interesting, [but] I wouldn’t recommend it to anybody.” Because everything came out okay, I guess this isn’t likely to become a legal dispute, but for some reason (maybe just because it’s very late) I’m finding it hysterically funny, so here it is.