This is an archived article that was published on sltrib.com in 2015, and information in the article may be outdated. It is provided only for personal research purposes and may not be reprinted.
I wrote last week about Jeff Griffin, who received a ticket in Salt Lake City for not properly displaying his handicap placard when he parked in a designated stall for the disabled because it was on his dashboard instead of hanging from his rearview mirror.
He appealed, to no avail, then took his case to Small Claims Court, where he lost and ended up paying $185 for the ticket and court costs because the judge told him ignorance of the law is no excuse.
Well, it turns out city officials don't know the law either. The city's parking-information brochure, under the section "Handicapped Zone," says a valid disabled designated vehicle plate or placard is required. It says that "the placards are to be properly displayed and visible at all times on the front rearview mirror or dashboard."
Get that? "Or dashboard."
So, according to the city's own brochure, Griffin followed the law.
Rick Graham, the city's director of public services, says Griffin was offered a discount on his ticket to $25, but he fought the citation on principle.
Graham says the city ordinance follows state law, which says the placard must be visible from the rear and front of the car. He said the parking enforcement officer who issued Griffin's ticket took pictures from the front and rear and the placard was not visible in the photos.
Griffin also took a picture at a different angle from the front, and the placard is visible in his photo.
But when you're a regular guy going up against the city, who is a judge to believe?
Palin strikes again • I wrote last week about former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin using on her Facebook wall a copyright picture taken by Utah wildlife photographer and outdoor tour guide Rob Daugherty without his permission or crediting him. When he pointed that out on Facebook, she ignored his protests and her Facebook friends scolded him for being petty.
Now comes Tracy Smith, who runs a right-leaning blog and Facebook page called "Journal of a Madman" that produces images to make a political point.
One such image contained a picture of National Security Agency whistleblower Edward Snowden with the caption "Publicly Exposed Classified Info: Wanted for Treason." Next to that is a picture of Hillary Clinton with the caption "Secretly Exposed Classified Info: Wanted for President."
Like she did with Daugherty's picture, Palin put that image on Facebook without attribution and replaced the "Journal of a Madman" logo on the image with her own "Sarah PAC" logo.
Smith and many others posted protests on the Palin Facebook page, but they got no correction nor apology. Later, when Palin's Facebook page had another "Journal of a Madman" image a blue, freshwater stream with the caption "Without the Federal Government" next to a yellow sludge-filled stream with the caption "With the Federal Government" the former GOP vice presidential candidate gave a "hat tip" to the "Journal of a Madman." She also wrote on her timeline, "Keep them coming and we'll give you full credit."
Money talks • I wrote recently about lifelong Utah Democrat Judy Zone's chagrin after she was willing to fork over $2,700 for a picture with Hillary Clinton during the Democratic presidential front-runner's appearance at a Park City fundraiser Aug. 5, but was not allowed to include her two young granddaughters in the same photo without doling out more mullah.
At least she's not a Republican.
While Clinton's fundraiser cost $500 to attend and $2,700 for the photo, the event held Tuesday in Salt Lake City for GOP presidential hopeful Jeb Bush cost $2,700 just to attend the lunch. Getting a photo with the son and brother of former presidents required a $10,000 contribution.
The fundraiser took place at the home of John Price, a big-time donor to the Republican Party and, especially, the Bushes.
Price was awarded for his largess during the second Bush's administration when he was appointed ambassador to the island nation of Mauritius off the African coast.