Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Monthly Heroes and Slimeballs

For the HERO of the month this month, I select Janepsy Cindy Mesa of Miami. (Sorry I couldn't find a Texan on short notice :-)

While there were some shady circumstances surrounding their lives in the months leading up to the incident, the bottom line is that someone who was very likely a drug dealer and also quite likely a murderer is Dead. And Dead is Good.

Snipped from the article (and slightly rearranged
to make a little more sense):

Ilan Nissim, 27, was fatally shot after he appeared unexpectedly Tuesday afternoon inside Mesa's home, 13365 NW 12th Ave., police said.
Mesa, 31, had been moving furniture of her Spanish-tiled house when Nissim appeared in the hallway. The front door was open.
Nissim, a ''business associate'' of her husband, attacked her after the pair exchanged some angry words, she told police. She then retrieved a black .38-caliber revolver from another room, returned and shot Nissim dead.
The man shot and killed in self-defense by Janepsy Cindy Mesa was a suspect in
her husband's murder, North Miami police said Wednesday.
For now, detectives call the killing self-defense, said North Miami Lt. Neal Cuevas.

Article in Miami Herald
Similar coverage on Local TV (just in case)

And now for our monthly Slimeball award.

The National Arbitration Forum (NAF)
(also here here here and here )
( I suppose they think by sheer numbers of names and web sites, they can try to hide their shady dealings and put on an air of respectability)

This organization, it seems to me, is intent on taking a slimy part of the law and lowering it to the lowest and slimiest possible. Arbitration is supposed to be a simple and economical way for two parties to resolve a conflict, but it is rarely used that way. In most cases, it is used as a hammer for corporations to beat down the common citizen. The NAF commonly represents debt collections organizations, and is used as a bypass for the Fair Debt Collection Practices Act (note that the link is a PDF of a legal document).

The non-profit consumer advocacy group Public Citizen recently conducted an eight-month examination into the credit card industry's use of pre-dispute binding mandatory arbitration based on all available data from the National Arbitration Forum. The found over 94% of the cases were resolved in favor of the business. This is probably being kind, or even hamstrung, since they used the NAF's own data to find this. Others have found worse stats.

Links of interest:
Almost all of the following links can be found here but are listed in case they scroll off of the index page.

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