Hennessy's View

Domine, non sum dignus

Continue Your Support of Good Local Government

You have another chance to improve government and fight petty tyranny by supporting Senator Eric Schmitt’s latest bill to hold local government accountable. Last year, Senator Schmitt became the champion of responsible local government with SB-5, a bill designed to end “taxation by citation” in local governments. This year, Senator Schmitt is back to close a loophole that some cities are exploiting to suck more money out of residents who can least afford it. Read more →

Maybe Police Officers Would Rather Be Tax Collectors

Do people become cops just so they can write speeding tickets? According to the National Sheriffs’ Association, writing speeding tickets is a police officer’s noblest calling. People and technologies that help drivers drive more safely and obey the law interfere with that noble mission of revenue generation, and the NSA is out to stop it. According to the Associated Press,the National Sheriffs’ Association wants to crack down on the popular traffic navigation app Waze™ so that people will drive faster and cops can write more tickets. Read more →

Do the Speed-Trap Mayors Want You To Drive Dangerously?

I had the rare honor of testifying before the Missouri Senate committee on Economic Development. The hearing’s subject was Senator Eric Schmitt’s Senate Bill 5 to reign in traffic court abuses in Missouri. Here’s some perspective: St. Louis County accounts for 22 percent of Missouri’s population and over 50 percent of traffic tickets St. Ann’s traffic court revenue exploded from about $500,000 in 2009 to over $3.5 million last year Read more →

Do Police Officers Like Writing Tickets?

[audio mp3=“https://hennessysview.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/12/do-police-like-ticket-quotas.mp3"][/audio] What do police officer think about traffic ticket quotas? Here’s one officer’s thoughts: In my agency, those of us in patrol had to keep a “Daily.” This would be a formal document that showed the times, addresses where we went, written in code, of what we had done. On the back were boxes for how many traffic citations, criminal citations, parking citations and felony and misdemeanor arrests we had made on that day. Read more →

What No One Tells You About Ferguson

There’s something happening here But what it is ain’t exactly clear There’s a man with a gun over there Telling me I got to beware –“For What It’s Worth” by The Buffalo Springfield “This isn’t about Michael Brown.” Those words popped out of my mouth as I watched the Sunday evening news with my dad. It was August 10. Full-scale rioting hadn’t erupted, but the battle lines were drawn: police on one side, people, mostly young people, on the other. Read more →

Here’s What’s Happening on the Muni Courts Front

He has erected a multitude of New Offices, and sent hither swarms of Officers to harrass our people, and eat out their substance. – The Declaration of Independence Back in August, I asked for your help in pushing for municipal court reform. Cities that abuse their police and courts destroy liberty: * Abusive cities[ turn citizens against their police forces](https://hennessysview.com/2014/08/19/end-game-ferguson/) * Abusive cities sponge off the poor * Abusive cities operate debtor prisons * Abusive cities subvert respect for the law and the courts * Abusive cities[ demean and demoralize their citizens](https://hennessysview. Read more →

Why Municipal Courts Matter to Liberty

I am embarrassed. I am embarrassed that I didn’t know about this problem sooner. Or I heard about it and ignored it, which is even worse. Maybe I thought it was just the usual liberal whining about trumped up racial problems. Whatever, I should have listened. On September 2, I asked a room of about 30 tea partiers, “Do you trust our justice system?” I heard a chorus of “No. Read more →