Daily Archives: January 4, 2013

More futile gestures to order the world to our liking

Greenwich is considering adding armed guards in each of our schools. No mention of a plan to install Jersey barriers around our playgrounds after the next lunatic, thwarted at school, turns to a softer target and plows into children at Bruce Park. When that happens, and it will, watch for a ban on pickup trucks.

Armored children’s clothing selling like crazy. Bicycle helmet? Check. Knee pads and gauntlets? Check. Goggles? Check. Armor plated shorts, hat and backpack? But no AR-15 Bushmaster? Why draw a line?

Town will burn violent video games. Remember when we sophisticates used to sneer at southern Baptists who burned rock albums in football stadiums? No more.

The group, a coalition of local organisations, says its actions do not assert that video games were the cause of the killings in nearby Newtown, but argues that violent games and films desensitize children to “acts of violence”.

That’s it: problem solved. If children could just be sensitive to others’ feelings, they wouldn’t go on shooting rampages. Amazing that it took so long for parents and clergymen to discover this.

Panic is an ugly, sad thing to observe, but at least there are those who know how to take political and financial advantage of it. To paraphrase our president, a crisis is a terrible thing to waste.


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Fake but accurate

The Hartford Courant has posted an empowering photograph of Democrat females and challenges its readers to “find your Connecticut female”. If you can’t don’t worry, because Nancy Pelosi’s been caught photoshopping in the missing. “It was a historical moment”, Pelosi explained, so she had to make it up.

My guess is that no one was outside the Capitol today – Pelosi said it was cold, and her fellow ladies were busy entertaining guests.



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This probably won’t help 127 Lake Avenue’s chances

169 Lake

169 Lake

Farmington Bank has initiated foreclosure proceedings on 169 Lake. I’m not making light of someone’s difficulties (and I’m not linking to the court docket), but Zillow now sends out notifications on these things the day they’re filed. An old listing for the property can be found here. It’s not presently on the market but I suppose it will be sooner or later, and assuming it goes as a distressed sale, whatever price it fetches won’t buttress values of the other houses along this stretch. Purchased for $1.268 million in 2006, I don’t see that number in its future.


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Old Greenwich isn’t necessarily bomb-proof


36 Forest Ave

36 Forest Ave

36 Forest Avenue, one of the single family homes that are part of the Collins development on that street, has sold for $1.470 million. Seller paid $1.640 for it in 2007. Which is not bad, given what happened to prices in other parts of town during the past five years, but this house, at least, is not back to 2007 levels. Some other locations are.


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Real estate?

127 Lake Ave

127 Lake Ave

Next week should see activity. This week, not so much. There was one listing returned to market today, 127 Lake Avenue, $895,000. Nice looking house but it demonstrates the difficulty of finding a buyer for lower Lake Avenue, where the convenience to downtown meets the traffic headed in that same direction. It’s a tough sell.

The owners of 127 paid $1,010,000 in 2003 and obviously put still more money into renovations, but after trying $1.2 million in 2008 and variations on that theme since, they are down now to under $900,000; I’d guess that price will drop still further. This is a nice house, and pretty good value if you can put up with the location. Just beware of resale.


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Okay, we’ve banned guns – what’s next?

Hmmm, no gun in that shower, is there?

Hmmm, no gun in that shower, is there?

In England, it’s long kitchen knives. Reader Greenitch sent this link and I assumed it was a parody. It is not; although the proposal is from May, 2005, England has gone ahead and banned most knives, without any great beneficial effect.

A team from West Middlesex University Hospital said violent crime is on the increase – and kitchen knives are used in as many as half of all stabbings.

They argued many assaults are committed impulsively, prompted by alcohol and drugs, and a kitchen knife often makes an all too available weapon.

The research is published in the British Medical Journal.

The researchers said there was no reason for long pointed knives to be publicly available at all.

They consulted 10 top chefs from around the UK, and found such knives have little practical value in the kitchen.

None of the chefs felt such knives were essential, since the point of a short blade was just as useful when a sharp end was needed.

The researchers said a short pointed knife may cause a substantial superficial wound if used in an assault – but is unlikely to penetrate to inner organs.

Knife wound

Kitchen knives can inflict appalling wounds

In contrast, a pointed long blade pierces the body like “cutting into a ripe melon”.

The use of knives is particularly worrying amongst adolescents, say the researchers, reporting that 24% of 16-year-olds have been shown to carry weapons, primarily knives.

The study found links between easy access to domestic knives and violent assault are long established.

French laws in the 17th century decreed that the tips of table and street knives be ground smooth.

A century later, forks and blunt-ended table knives were introduced in the UK in an effort to reduce injuries during arguments in public eating houses.

The researchers say legislation to ban the sale of long pointed knives would be a key step in the fight against violent crime.

“The Home Office is looking for ways to reduce knife crime.

“We suggest that banning the sale of long pointed knives is a sensible and practical measure that would have this effect.”

Government response

Home Office spokesperson said there were already extensive restrictions in place to control the sale and possession of knives.

“The law already prohibits the possession of offensive weapons in a public place, and the possession of knives in public without good reason or lawful authority, with the exception of a folding pocket knife with a blade not exceeding three inches.

“Offensive weapons are defined as any weapon designed or adapted to cause injury, or intended by the person possessing them to do so.

“An individual has to demonstrate that he had good reason to possess a knife, for example for fishing, other sporting purposes or as part of his profession (e.g. a chef) in a public place.

“The manufacture, sale and importation of 17 bladed, pointed and other offensive weapons have been banned, in addition to flick knives and gravity knives.”

So how’s that worked out? Not as well as you might think

Violent crimes haven’t gone away with the UK’s gun control. They’ve actually gone up.

Britons suffer 1,158,957 violent crimes per year, which works out at 2,034 per 100,000 residents. The U.S., meanwhile, has a rate of 466 crimes per 100,000 residents, which is lower than France’s, at 504

The UK outlawed the switchblade and gravity knife in 1959.

In 1988 possession of a pocket knife with a blade larger than 3 inches in public became illegal.

In 1996, it became illegal to sell a razor blade to anyone under the age of 16.

In 2007, you needed a license to be able to sell “non-domestic knives.”

Despite all that knifepoint robberies rose by 10 percent this year and there are some 60,000 stabbings each year.  


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A bad idea in one state should not be repeated here

Stehen Dargan, moron at large

Stephen Dargan, moron at large

Connecticut Democrat Stephen Dargan, eager to cash in on the Newtown massacre, plans to publicize gun owners names and addresses. The local and state police (and federal law enforcement departments)already have this information, and a registered gun owner’s drivers license notes that he has a carry permit, so what purpose, other than harassment, would this bill serve? Well it gains him a headline of course, but I thought prostitutes preferred to stay out of the limelight. Politicians must be a separate class of that species.

At least, and unlike the ladies of the Journal News who first dreamed up this pestilent tactic, Steve’s contact information is shown in the official Government Affairs page – call him up and tell him this is a dumb idea.

Party: Democrat
District Towns: West Haven
Committees: Executive and Legislative Nominations, Insurance and Real Estate, Public Safety and Security
Email: stephen.dargan@cga.ct.gov
Website: http://www.housedems.ct.gov/Dargan/index.asp
Capitol Phone: 860-240-0570
Capitol Fax: 860-240-0206
Home Address: 215 Beach St West Haven 06516-6133
Home Phone: 203-937-1985


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