Jim Tedisco, the New York State assembleyman whose premature decision to bolt Albany for a Congressional position he would never win drew the ire of left-leaning commentators, has recently introduced a bill designed to charge wealthy criminals for their state-provided room and board. The so-called "Madoff Bill" proposes a "sliding scale [to] determine how much convicts would have to pay, based on their assets," with those on the lower end of the spectrum (those folks with net worths below forty grand) paying nothing while the Martha Stewarts and Michael Vicks of the world would be responsible for their respective tabs in their entirety.
July 2009 Archives
In one of the more thought-provoking articles I've come across lately, Time Magazine's Steven Gray discusses a nascent trend in academic circles: the selling of sponsorships to support classes for which sufficient funding does not exist. As an academic myself, I have seen first-hand the ways in which dwindling enrollment and budget restrictions can adversely affect both students and instructors, so I was not quite as appalled by the prospect of "TD Waterhouse Marketing 101" as I feel I should have been when I first heard the suggestion. I mean, libraries are often named after donors and sports stadiums frequently bear the names of various corporate sponsors, right?
John McFadden, a 42-year-old former police officer from Bearsden has been convicted of the sexual abuse of three young boys attending a martial arts club the man had established in the 1980s, including one boy who testified before the court. According to the BBC, McFadden "befriended the boy, invited him to stay overnight and told him that demons and spirits would kill him and drag him to hell unless he carried out sex acts." The victim, now 32, told the court that McFadden "dressed in a black cloak and used a crucifix with a skull and crossbones and an onyx ring, which he claimed gave him power, to terrify the youngster into keeping the abuse a secret."