Short takes
This is an archived article that was published on sltrib.com in 2012, and information in the article may be outdated. It is provided only for personal research purposes and may not be reprinted.

Drug raid gone wrong • The total botch of one Salt Lake City Police investigation has led to the opening of another one. This time, police officers will be the target of the probe. And we can only hope that, this time, they get it right. Members of the Salt Lake City Metro Narcotics Task Force last week bashed in the door of an innocent 76-year-old woman and held her at gunpoint before realizing that they had entered the wrong home. Police Chief Chris Burbank, to his credit, quickly apologized for the error, offering no excuses and promising to find out how one of his officers obtained a search warrant for the wrong address. Investigations like this are not hot pursuit. They are supposed to be carefully planned and based on extensive investigation of where illegal drugs might be and what hazards officers who go in after them might face. This time, obviously, none of that happened. All in all, another argument against the whole idea that drugs, a public health problem, are best addressed by law enforcement.

Xs and Os. Dollars and cents • The Utah State Board of Education has begun work on new rules that will require money donated to school programs from booster clubs, other groups or individuals be tracked and allocated according to all the rules that keep public school finance decisions open to the public. The board acted in response to a scandal involving the Timpview High School football team, where its coach resigned and had his teaching license suspended after he was accused of mismanaging donations. One result of that investigation was the conclusion that such funds lack a clear paper trail that could have confirmed the suspicions, or exonerated the coach. That was not the only case where proper fiscal controls could have prevented problems. These new rules cannot come too soon.

Pity the billionaires • Timeshare mogul David Siegel is upset that the results of the coming presidential election could bring higher taxes for rich Americans. So worried, in fact, that he emailed his employees a warning that if the current administration is re-elected, the resulting tax burden on his family could be so great that he'd have to start firing employees. Siegel, whose holdings include the Westgate Resorts near Park City, has thus made himself the embodiment of the greedy billionaire, the kind of person whose attitude drove people to vote for President Obama to begin with, and might move more of them to vote for him this time. People who live in 1 percenters' glass timeshares shouldn't throw stones.