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Living with Schizoaffective Disorder

Standing to Complain,
Or,
C-TRAN Kicks a Cripple

"It'''s useless to sue a bank," wrote a bank's attorney,
"what does work is to show up at opening time
with a bunch of picket signs."

Michael David Crawford, Baritone,
mdcrawford@gmail.com

Tuesday, February 12, 2019

In response to Fascist and Communist Propaganda during the nineteen-thirtees, 1984 author George Orwell wrote in Politics and the English Language of the vital importance of saying or writing precisely what one intends to express.

Actress and Singer Barbra Streisand's Malibu, California beachfront mansion

Club Babs

"The Streisand Effect" denotes the dramatic result of attempting to coerce the censorship of public information:

Named after the American singer and actress Barbra Streisand, the Streisand Effect describes how efforts to suppress a juicy piece of online information can backfire and end up making things worse for the would-be censor. Ms Streisand inadvertently gave her name to the phenomenon in 2003, when she sued the California Coastal Records Project, which maintains an online photographic archive of almost the entire California coastline, on the grounds that its pictures included shots of her cliffside Malibu mansion, and thus invaded her privacy.

From The Economist, What is the Streisand Effect?

Simply put: The Streisand Effect is readily avoided by "Letting Sleeping Dogs Lie".

Late on the night of Friday, February 8th, 2019, Portland Oregon and Vancouver Washington got about three inches of snow.

In November of 2011, a special election was held in Clark County, of which Vancouver is the Seat. I myself voted for a local sales tax increase to raise fifty-two million dollars for the construction of a "Rapid Transit Corridor" along Fourth Plain in Vancouver, one of the city's two East-West Main Drags. The other is Mill Plain, whose own Rapid Transit Corridor is now in the Public Comment Phase.

There is also a North-South Main Drag, being Highway 99, which is no longer a highway, just a regular city street due to the construction of Interstate 5 a block to 99's West.

That Fifty-Two Bazillion Simoleons was not well spent: C-TRAN spent I expect twenty million of it building these... uh... Avant Garde Conceptual Art Structures from the Westfield Vancouver Mall in East Vancouver, westward along Fourth Plain, eventually to loop around in Downtown Vancouver.

Those... uh... sculptures do not in any way protect waiting passengers from the heavy winds that often blow around here, nor do they in any way keep the snow, ice or rain off the very high Thermal Inertia benches.

At the same time, C-TRAN has been steadily tearing out their old, truly effective shelters with very _low_ Thermal Inertia wooden benche to replace them with admittedly wind, rain and snow-protection shelters, but those new shelters again have very high thermal inertia benches.

Snow covered C-TRAN Vine Bus Stop bench

C-TRAN Expects Us To Sit Here?

Surely you've seen "A Christmas Story"?

Do you remember when the protagonist was dared to touch a frigid flagpole with his tongue?

That same phenomenon happens to my ass damn near every single day, on my way to and from work in Downtown Portland.

When I arrived at "The Vine" - so everybody will think those $$$$ new articulated buses are edgy, but really they're not - the Countdown Clock advised me that I'd have to wait forty-five minutes, as the buses were going very very slow that day: those buses are completely unequipped for the kind of winter weather Vancouver has experienced for millions of years.

I faced the choice of standing, or scraping the snow off a bench then sitting.

Hilarity Ensued when I stood back up as The Vine drew near: two pinched nerves in my lower back - Lumbar Radiculopathy - kicked in. Just imagine someone taking a chainsaw to both your legs while you try to hobble toward the door of a bus.

I hobbled with great pain and difficulty to the front of the bus where I "Tapped My Hop Card", that is, used an RFID Chip in a plastic card to pay my fare. Completely overcome with grief, I politely, clearly and respectfully begged the driver to ask the C-TRAN board to shelter all The Vine benches from the rain, ice and snow, as well as both sitting and standing passengers from the cold, wet winds.

My bus operator was, to put it mildly, All Pissed Off that I asked him to do other than that which is specifically stipulated in high job description.

He demanded I get off his bus - which would have meant that I would wait another> forty-five minutes.

I sat down inside the bus, dialed 9-1-1 then while so overcome with pain, sorrow, shame and grief requested the Dispatcher send a VPD Officer, not to arrest my driver, but to reason with him that he would not really throw me back out into the snow.

Later that same Saturday, I used the Complain Form on C-TRAN's website to, in The Spirit Of Compromise, initiate a "Win-Win" Settlement:

Please ask C-TRAN's General Counsel to contact me to discuss a settlement offer.

I would prefer not to have to file a Civil Complaint but I will unless my concerns are taken seriously and dealt with expeditiously.

Good Day.

Michael D. Crawford

C-TRAN does not yet know that our settlement will require the re-design - quite likely the replacement - of every last one of The Vine's Avant-Garde Art Pieces.

Today - Monday, February 11th, I recieved a reply from "Deputy Director of Human Resources and Risk SHPR" Laura Merry.

Despite my having unambiguously identified the specific Vine Stop, the specific Vine Bus and that bus' specific Bus Operator, Ms. Merry, quite clearly unconcerned with my quite serious intention to sue, did not lift a finger to have C-TRAN's Counsel contact me, nor to contact the Bus Operator that he may explain his evil and his cruelty to her.

Perhaps I should have been more clear as to why C-TRAN put its own ass into a sling well before that 2011 Special Election that raised all those Samoleons for a bunch of Useless-As-Nuns'-Tits alleged Bus "Shelters":

"Spoliation of Evidence" is a legal Term Of Art that denotes the act of "intentional, reckless, or negligent withholding, hiding, altering, fabricating, or destroying of evidence relevant to a legal proceeding". It is the Civil Lawsuit counterpart to Destruction Of Evidence in a Criminal Trial. The legal consequences faced by party to a lawsuit who Spoliates vary by jurisdiction; I do not yet know what the rules are in the City Of Vancouver, Clark County or the State Of Washington.

I do know - all to well - that Spoliation Law does not apply if such evidence is destroyed in the normal course of business as stipulated by a written Document Retention Policy.

The Document Retention Policy "Safe Harbor" rule resulted from the United States Justice Department v. Microsoft suit, which concerned Microsoft's unlawful effort to "Cut Off The Air Supply" of Web Browser and Web Server vendor Netscape. Because Microsoft did not have a written policy to specify just when documents were to be destroyed, during the Discovery Phase of the procedure, the DOJ was able to seize everything, including - among a great many other tasty and nutritious snack foods - every electronic mail that then-CEO Bill Gates had ever set and received!

The Retention Policy Safe Harbor resulted in every corporation with so much as An Ounce Of Sense irrevocably destroying its records after very short periods of time; it's quite common for Security Camera video storage devices to be erased then re-used every thirty days.

While the Spoliation rules require the impoundment and preservation of every record which could conceivably be entered into evidence at trial, such impoundment and preservation is not required until the party in question is notified that it is to be a party to a lawsuit.

Note that Discovery as well as Deposition - "Under Oath" spoken testimony during the Civil Procedure's Evidence-Gathering Phase - applies to both Parties. Therefore, C-TRAN has every right to demand that I myself impound then preserve evidence as well.

Importantly:. the prohibition against requiring Criminal Defendants to incriminate themselves does not apply to Civil Lawsuits; that fact is poorly understood by the American public.

Back to Ms. Merry's reply to my request for their Counsel to contact me to negotiate a settlement. To Wit:

Laura,

Under the laws regarding Spoliation Of Evidence, this email serves as notice that you are required by law to impound then preserve - guarded carefully - all records having to do with The Vine commencing Friday Morning until Sunday morning, included but not limited to:

  • Written material, such as email or paper documents
  • Audio Recordings, if phone calls from the bus to your dispatcher are recorded at all
  • Video Recordings, including those from the bus' security cameras as well as the cameras at the 12th and Broadway Vine Stop

Before the week is out, I shall file a claim for Intentional Cruelty by your driver.

The form my complaint is required to take is determined by whether C-TRAN is a private corporation or a government agency.

If government, please either send me a PDF for your Tort Claim Form, or a link to your webpage where I may download such a PDF.

Otherwise, I will send you an Invoice, which if not paid promptly will result in my filing a Civil Complaint with the Clark County Superior Court.

That invoice will be sent Registered Mail with Return Receipt Requested.

I require the name and contact info of the attorney to whom my Process Server deliver Complaint after it's been stamped by the Court Clerk; alternatively, I could have it delivered to the Registered Agent For Service Of Process if C-TRAN is a Corporation and not a Governmental Agency.

Your Vine Operator used his bus' telephone to call for a manager and a Securitas security guard to show up. Please ask the driver in question for each of their names, then ask them to visit you at your office to explain their points of view of the incident.

I myself spent a half hour on the phone with 9-1-1, then five or ten minutes with VPD Officer R. Reynolds sitting next to me, assisting me in recovering from the foul abused (sic) heaped upon me by your Vine Operator Saturday morning.

CRESPA - Clark County 9-1-1 - will mail me a WAV file of my call on a CD; I'll request that CD later tonight, then in a day or two I'll pick up a copy of Officer Reynold's Police Report then will drop a copy to you in the mail.

Angrily,

Mike Crawford

What I know that C-TRAN does not - not yet, anyway - is that I really will file a lawsuit with the Clark County Superior Court, then at our very first Preliminary Hearing, submit a Motion to stay the proceedings until after C-TRAN has torn out every last one of those Cripple Torture Avant Garde Art Pieces, to replace them with real shelters with wooden benches.

CRESPA will require a few days to mail me that CD with the WAV file of my 9-1-1 call. When I receive it, I'll use it for the audio track of a YouTube, whose video will consist of a photo essay of rain, snow and ice covered Vine benches.

This for Streisand-Like Appeal.

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