by William Skink
On Saturday evening, as the country watched corporate media anoint Joe Biden as America’s Next Top President, Missoula police responded to a disturbance on Sherwood Lane, where a man with a knife allegedly attacked officers. The predictable result of this encounter with law enforcement was death.
At the risk of sounding insensitive, Missoula police picked a great time to shoot and kill someone. We are in a confusing transition period from bad orange man to the handsy Uncle everyone in the family has to make excuses for, so how we react to the same pattern of lethal force by law enforcement may be changing.
The first thing we need to do as a community is determine the man’s race because that will help us determine how much emotional energy we need to dedicate. If he’s just a white guy, the next thing to consider is mental health issues. I will note the location of this incident is close to the homeless encampment by Reserve Street.
After figuring out those data points, the next thing to do is pacify any local outrage that may bubble up. One way to do this is to point out how we have a NEW PRESIDENT now, and also a relatively new police chief, so let’s give them a chance.
And let’s be honest, Missoula, you are REALLY GOOD at giving people chances, like Seth Bodnar with the enrollment crisis, and Eran Pehan with the housing crisis, and Mayor Engen with the backroom deals and drunken Carlyle handshake that cost Missoula taxpayers over a hundred million dollars.
If that last number surprises you, that’s because it’s JUST NOW being reported by NBC Montana what exactly the water company lawsuit cost Missoula taxpayers, and this information is only coming out because NBC Montana LITIGATED for it. From the link:
Since 2017, the city of Missoula refused our numerous requests for a detailed accounting of more than $9 million in attorneys’ fees and other costs spent to take over Missoula’s privately owned water utility.
But even after our fight gained access to some of the information we wanted, critics say what happened is still far from transparent.
Missoula now owns its water system. You probably don’t think of that when you turn on the tap. But if you are a Missoula Water customer, you’re paying off a $91 million purchase of a private company called Mountain Water. That’s just for the company. By the time you total bills for improvements, add in some of the other side’s legal fees and financing charges, the total price is $112.6 million paid by Missoula Water customers.
In breaking down the legal fees (as much as the limited disclosures from the city allows), a Seattle law firm pulled in the most taxpayer loot, while two local law firms competed for the next biggest pay day. In the following excerpt, pay special attention to specifically who at Boone Karlberg billed the most hours:
Harry Schneider, a business litigation attorney and Perkins Coie partner, billed most of it.
Spreadsheets tally his bills from March 2014 through July 2020. He billed anywhere from $670 to $790 an hour for a total of $2,624,190 for 3,114 hours. If you break that down, Schneider billed for almost an entire year and a half of work, if he logged 40-hour weeks.
But Perkins Coie wasn’t the only law firm. The other two are right in downtown Missoula — Boone Karlberg and Datsopoulos, McDonald and Lind. Between those two, ratepayers spent over $2 million.
Boone Karlberg made the most. Natasha Jones billed over 2,600 hours. But there is a big difference between her firm and the Seattle one. Jones billed at $200 an hour. Add in the other top three most involved attorneys and paralegals and you get over twice as many hours at over $1 million less.
The third firm, Datsopolous, McDonald and Lind, made about $360,000.
I added the emphasis because Jones, after scoring big with this case, went on to be appointed by the Mayor to none other than the Missoula Redevelopment Agency:
On a unanimous vote, members of the Missoula City Council approved Mayor John Engen’s newest appointment to the Missoula Redevelopment Agency’s Board of Directors on Wednesday, one to replace longtime board member and former mayor Daniel Kemmis.
Reading further down in article quoted above, I discovered this fascinating tidbit (emphasis mine):
Engen described her as dedicated to her community and the right choice for the rare MRA board opening.
“She is extraordinarily bright, and is also extraordinarily interested in the future of our community,” said Engen. “She’s a shareholder in an office that was one of the first redevelopment projects in Missoula.
Isn’t that nice?
If you’re starting to get that itch of rage welling up inside you, please remember that we live in JOE BIDEN’S AMERICA now, where any problematic example of dirty dealings, or or influence peddling, or cracked-out child fucking, will be summarily shoved down the memory hole, and any complainer labeled a mentally ill Trumpster BEGGING to be sent to the Biden reeducation camps.
Unless, of course, Trump decides to not go gentle into that good night because Team Biden stole the election.