Saturday, August 25, 2012

Rasmussen's Odd Gary Johnson Coverage

A few months ago I noticed that the Rasmussen polling firm, which seems to represent the Republican establishment, is covering the presidential race in a peculiar way.  It asks prospective voters whether they will support Romney, Obama, or some other candidate.  The firm thereby marginalizes Gary Johnson, who is on the ballot in all 50 states  and threatens Romney, who is running neck and neck with Obama.  

Today, Rasmussen released special poll data that finds that, while 16% of voters like Gary Johnson, 20% don't; two percent consider him very favorably, but eight percent consider him very unfavorably.  Rasmussen links to the actual questions asked about Johnson, which are as follows:
1) If the Presidential Election were held today, would you vote for Republican Mitt Romney, Democrat Barack Obama or Libertarian Gary Johnson?
2) Do you have a very favorable, somewhat favorable, somewhat unfavorable or very unfavorable impression of Gary Johnson?

What's odd is that in their analysis of their findings the Rasmussen people don't reveal what the percentage answers were to question one.  Elsewhere, they continue to reveal that four percent would vote for "some other candidate," but they don't say what percent answered "Gary Johnson" to question one.  Here is what they write:

>Libertarian Party presidential candidate Gary Johnson is on the ballot in all 50 states but is largely unknown to the nation’s voters. 

>A new Rasmussen Reports national telephone survey finds that 16% of Likely U.S. Voters have a favorable opinion of Johnson while 20% offer an unfavorable view. Only one-out-of-10 have a strong opinion of him: Two percent (2%) have a Very Favorable view of Johnson while eight percent (8%) have a Very Unfavorable one. (To see survey question wording, click here.) 

The important questions concern Johnson's percentage and the extent to which he diminishes Romney's chance.  For some reason Rasmussen sidesteps giving the answer.   Given that  today (August 25) Obama is beating Romney by one or two points and has been since Ryan's nomination, that would seem to be an important question for the Republicans.  

Since the Republicans are the second of two big-government parties, and Americans, a nation of squealing rats on a sinking ship, are happy with their choices--squealers-in-chief Romney and Obama--I am getting my life boat in order.  Besides voting for Johnson, I am looking into buying real estate in Chile or Uruguay and am going down there for a first look this winter.  I have been told that the Bush family already owns a huge parcel in Uruguay.

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

April Jones Battles Huntington's and Indiana's Oppression

April Jones
                Earl Key, an Indiana systems programmer, has seen his children suffer from the same disease that afflicted his late wife: Huntington's.  Huntington's affects 250,000 Americans. It reduces mobility and muscular function.  At first, it causes twitching called chorea.  At a later stage those afflicted become unable to care for themselves.   Its most famous victim was Woody Guthrie, author of "This Land is Your Land."

            April Jones, Key's stepdaughter when she was growing up, reunited with him 12 years ago.  Although Key is not her legal guardian, he has provided her financial support and regularly drives 200 miles from Illinois to Indiana to visit her.  But he was not consulted when Jones was seized against her will in 2011. Taken away from her apartment in handcuffs, she was forced into a police car and taken to a hearing in the court of Judge G. Thomas Gray in Martinsville, Indiana, forced to reside in a hospital behavioral ward, and then confined to a nursing home--all against her will.   Lumar Griggs, whom, Jones told me, she hates, was appointed her guardian and given the authority to agree to forcible administration of Haldol, powerful psychotropic medication that Jones does not want to take.  

            Jeffrey Schaler, an American University public affairs professor who has written on the rights of the disabled and mentally ill, says that he gets so many letters from citizens who have been troubled by this issue that he "finds it overwhelming."  He says:  "Adult Protective Services (APS) and Social Services generally are horrible in the way they engage in taking people away from families.  It's frightening.  I just hear the stories and people asking for help."  

            David Smith is interim legal services director of Indiana Protection and Advocacy Services.  He says that in Indiana the guardianship process depends on a physician's report to the court that indicates incapacity and inability to make decisions.   Also, the court needs to determine who, in the ward's interest, should be appointed guardian.  In Jones's case, Judge Gray automatically assigned her guardianship to someone with whom he has a relationship:  Griggs.  In virtually all cases the guardian is given total authority over the person's decision making.  This is so even if the individual, like Jones, is competent.  Indiana's legal system gives Jones fewer rights than New York's mental patients.  In New York, unless they pose a danger, mental patients can refuse drugs.  In Indiana the government has assigned a guardian who dictates to Jones that she take powerful anti-psychotic medication--even though she is not psychotic--that she thinks is killing her.  


            In January 2011, Jones's landlord accused her of dropping cigarette ashes on her bed. It is unknown whether the landlord contacted APS.  APS's Cindy Jones filed an emergency petition with Morgan Superior Court in Martinsville.     

            Three years earlier, in 2008, Judge Gray had appointed the same guardian, Griggs, when Jones had been living in a Martinsville woman's shelter.  Subsequently, Jones moved to Illinois, and Indiana dismissed the guardianship after the Illinois courts made a determination that Jones did not need a guardian.  Jones then returned to Indiana to be closer to her family.

             According to Key, APS encouraged Jones's physician to write a report based on six-month-old information; the report recommended involuntary confinement.   Judge Gray did not allow Jones to speak at the emergency hearing; her next friend Key was not present.  The US Supreme Court has held that, in cases of involuntary treatment of a mental patient, there must be due process.  

            Jones told me that after forcing her to stay in the hospital, Griggs improperly changed the status on her forms to "voluntary."  Jones told me that she believes that the stress from these events has shortened her life. 

            Griggs, Judge Gray and Bloomington, Indiana APS have not responded to my requests for statements.

Key Petitions Federal Court

             Key petitioned the federal district court in 2011. Key's petition says that Jones has been "drugged into submission."  He accuses Griggs of manipulating the nursing home staff; although they stopped giving Jones Haldol in April, 2011, they resumed giving it to her in July 2011 because, Key alleges, Griggs encouraged it. 

            Although Jones did not fall prior to her forced residency in the Parkview nursing home, since being forced to take Haldol she has suffered many bruises and repeatedly has fallen on her head.  Key writes: "April walked into that nursing home fully cognitive, living a life not unlike anyone else's. The past 19 months have literally destroyed her."  Key sent me photos, submitted to federal court as part of his petition, of wounds and bruises that Jones has incurred under Griggs's guardianship.

             Key's petition also states that Jones so fears Griggs and the Parkview Nursing Home that she has expressed concern that they will isolate her in retaliation for the petition. 

            It also states that after issuing the decree to put Jones under Griggs's guardianship, Judge Gray stepped into the gallery and smilingly asked Griggs, “Are we keeping you filled up?”

            When I questioned Smith about the appeal process for guardianships, he told me that in Indiana appeals must be made to the same court that authorized the guardianship.  When I questioned whether there might be psychological bias on the part of a court that has already made a decision, he told me that Indiana does not recognize the possibility of bias on a court's part.

            While driving with Key, Jones said over the telephone that she did not want to stay at the Parkview Nursing Home.  She said that she dislikes Griggs, whom she called a mean, controlling person.  She began to cry when she said that she wanted to be with her "dad," Key.  
            On August 16, 2012 Key signed a Reply Brief for the US Court of Appeals in Muncie on Jones's behalf. He is now waiting for a reply from a three-judge panel as to the constitutionality of Jones's treatment at the hands of Adult Protective Services.  Key, who is not a lawyer and has been handling the case himself, has asked The Lincoln Eagle to make a public appeal for an attorney who can help him with the case, even if the attorney is not a member of the Indiana bar. 

Mitchell Langbert, Ph.D. is political editor of The Lincoln Eagle.  Since 2008, when he first blogged about this issue, he has received several requests for assistance from victims of Adult Protective Services actions around the country. 

Connecticut's Bell Girls Support Chick-fil-A

Connecticut's Bell girls know more about the Constitution and the ideas behind it than Rahm Emmanuel, Michael Bloomberg, Thomas Menino, and Edwin Lee combined.

Ryan and Obama: Squeakers in Chief

Here's a video of Paul Ryan supporting the concept of economic stimulus.  He only opposed it when Obama did it;  he favored it when Bush did it. If Ryan and Obama are the best the US can do, the country is beyond repair. America is a nation of squeaking rats on a sinking ship led by squeakers in chief Ryan and Obama.

Letter to Rahm Emmanuel Re Chick-fil-A

PO Box 130
West Shokan, New York 12494
August 21, 2012

Mayor Rahm Emmanuel
121 N LaSalle Street
Chicago City Hall 4th Floor
Chicago, IL 60602
Dear Mr. Emmanuel:

I am organizing a group of 50 to rent a bus to drive to our nearest Chick-fil-A. I had not heard of the chain before your remarks about it, for its nearest outlet is two hours from my home. The bus will leave from Kingston, New York, and many of my friends are enthusiastic about the event.

We intend to party, drink a keg of beer, read the alien-to-you Constitution of the United States, and burn your, Obama's and the Chicago Skyline's images--along with those of 1935 Berlin and Moscow. 

I had been in Chicago as an expert witness in 2005, enjoyed it, and had planned to return. Because of your remarks I will never set foot in Chicago again; it is as dead to me as Dachau, which I also visited once before: when I was a senior at Sarah Lawrence College in 1975.

You well illustrate a phenomenon that I have witnessed since my childhood in the 1960s: America is a country where the worst get to the top.  Since the early 19th century political leadership has been the nation's weak point, and you represent a new low.  


Mitchell Langbert