Do Svidanya, Joe
It's official. The former Soviet Union's freer, kinder, and safer for the indigent and the sick than Maricopa County.
What other conclusion can this dodo draw from news that TB-sufferer Robert Daniels has fled the police state of Uncle Joe Arpaio for Moscow, Russia, former home of commie dictator Uncle Joe Stalin? His lawyer, Linda Cosme, claimed Daniels couldn't handle the systemic abuse and the ongoing threats from Joe and the MCSO that they might arrest him on some trumped-up B.S. So he copped a one-way ticket to borscht-burg.
Who can criticize the comrade? Maricopa County health officials believed at one time that Daniels, who holds dual U.S.-Russian citizenship, had XDR-TB, or extremely drug-resistant tuberculosis. They said he was jeopardizing others by going out sans medical mask and not taking his meds like he should. So they turned him over to the biggest sadist in Sand Land, Nickel Bag Joe, who stuck him in a medieval jail ward with no access to TV, computer, a shower, or much in the way of human contact. Joe vowed to treat him just like other inmates, though Daniels, now 28, was not charged with a crime.
Daniels spent nearly a year in conditions that made the Turkish prison in Midnight Express look like a freakin' Marriott. Check his description of his hellish environs to Amy Goodman of Pacifica Radio's Democracy Now!
"I never thought this could happen," Daniels told Goodman via pay phone. "I'm sometimes sitting on a bed, and I'm just crying because of the quietness. I don't have, you know, permission to take a normal shower, and I have to spit-wash. It's really cold, especially at this time . . . I can't even spit-wash normally."
The AZ ACLU sued, seeking to improve Daniels' situation. Daniels was eventually ordered by the Superior Court to be sent to Denver's National Jewish Medical and Research Center. Daniels was ecstatic to be leaving what he referred to as a "black hole." Ever the ass, Arpaio grumbled to Denver's Channel 9, "It's great that we got rid of him, but if we can charge him, we need to get him back."
Sounds like Arpaio's really the one who's sick in the head, that is. Who would be thinking of how they can charge such a seriously ill man? Only mean ol' Uncle Joe.
In the Mile High City, Daniels was at last treated humanely. Doctors removed his lung, and he was declared non-contagious. They determined that Daniels never had XDR-TB, but instead had MDR-TB, the slightly less-stubborn multidrug-resistant TB. To Channel 9, he disclosed his worst nightmare: "The fear of going back to Phoenix."
But he had to return to pitiless P-town, where our troll of a sheriff was threatening to arrest him for reckless endangerment. Maricopa County officials, you see, had made Daniels sign a promise to come back before they let him seek treatment in Denver.
Back in The PHX and holed up in a crummy Van Buren Street motel, Daniels missed his wife and kid back home in Mother Russia, asserted ACLU attorney Dan Pochoda, who worked on Daniels' case. Pochoda and other sources said Daniels was unhappy with the care he was receiving from Maricopa County, which made him extremely weak.
"There was no longer any legal hold over him," peeped Pochoda. "He was certainly free to travel, free to go home. There were no restrictions on that constitutional right."
Tell it to our cruel top constable, who growled like a rabid raccoon to the Arizona Republic in a story buried on the back page of the Valley & State section, beneath the weather.
"What, did the heat get too much for him?" wondered our churlish chief lawman. "He had to run to Russia?"
According to the Russian news and information agency Novosti, the Sheriff's Office is even threatening to extradite Maricopa County's one-lung Papillon back to the U.S. just so they can torment the poor bastard some more.
"Impossible," pooh-poohed Pochoda. "Not according to any extradition treaty I've seen. They don't extradite people for something like this. That's just grandstanding [on the sheriff's part]."
Of course! That's what he does. But with a vindictive old viper like Arpaio as the law in this county, The Bird's beginning to believe that the farther you get from from Maricopa County, the freer you actually are.
Producers of the Comedy Central show Reno 911! should consider submitting a public-records request to MCSO flack Paul Chagolla for the doorstop report on this phony "plot" to kill our crotchety top cop, which this tweeter discussed last week ("Sheriff Fidel," October 11).
Why, there's enough material in the nearly 200-page doc for an entire season of comedic high jinks. Writers for the series could even do a follow-up to the theatrical release of Reno 911!: Miami (based on the Reno 911! TV show) and call it Reno 911!: Phoenix, with the MCSO Wells Fargo building brain trust as the flick's modern-day Keystone Kops.
This ornery owl just copped his copy of the file, and it's an eye-popper. As recently cribbed by ink-slingers over at the Arizona Republic, it details this fantasy conspiracy to whack our dearly beloved, doddering law-dog Sheriff Joe. In it, an unnamed confidential informant takes MCSO Chief Larry Black, Arpaio's head of special ops, and the rest of his department on a snipe hunt that targets the Minutemen, the Meraz drug cartel and immigrants-rights activist Elias Bermudez. All are supposedly allies in a fictional assassination scheme.
The first sign that the MCSO was gnawing on some seriously funky green baloney should've been talk of Bermudez and the Minutemen goin' steady. Yet there were a buttload of other "tells" left out of the Republic article, which makes you wonder to what degree the Rep was compromised by its "exclusive."
For example, the Republic piece mentions two polygraph exams that the MCSO's snitch took and states that in the second, "two of [the informant's] responses about the murder plot registered as deceptive."
What the Rep doesn't tell you is that one of those Qs was a real humdinger. Check it:
Q: Have you told the truth about the plan to kill Sheriff Arpaio?
A [from the CI]: Yes.
Polygraph examiner Willis Deatherage noted in his analysis of the wire-up that the stool pigeon "show[ed] deception" over this question, as well as another about a contact in the paramilitary outfit hired to blast Joe. Deatherage stated: "In reference to the question regarding telling the truth about the plan to kill the sheriff, CI states that he has been truthful, but admits that he has filled in some information that was not given to him specifically."
So not only was the truth machine telling MCSO's Deputy Dawgs that the CI was lying, the CI was telling them he was lying. Hey, at least when he was telling them he was lying, he was really telling them the truth, right?
The CI, who had come to the MCSO through the Yuma PD, was being paid by the MCSO for his info: $60 here; $110 there. There's no total listed, though this talon-bearer counts at least $330 from the payouts mentioned. They also give him a cell phone at one point.
A payout like $330 is a pittance in comparison to the $500,000 the MCSO reportedly spent on the investigation. But that only adds insult to injury: MCSO bigwigs fell for a penny-ante grifter's verbal three-card Monte, and they're still falling for it. Chief Black, head of Arpaio's special ops, told the Rep, "We're still investigating. We still don't believe it's over . . . We still continue to believe the threat is out there."
To parrot the Geico caveman, "What!?" In the MCSO report, the CI says, at one point, that he was offered $10K by the drug smugglers for his role as a translator, but refused the payment. Then he turns right around and asks his MCSO handlers for $100. Didn't this make anyone suspicious? The CI doesn't want to get paid $10K, but he needs a C-note for expenses? Puh-lease!
Whenever the MCSO tracked down a tip the CI handed 'em, it turned up snake eyes. He gave investigators a strip of paper with an e-mail address. They traced it to some teen in Simsbury, Connecticut, who has about as much to do with the Mexican mafia as Hannah Montana. The gullible gumshoes did 24-hour surveillance on Tolleson's Boschma-Gerben Dairy, riding around it, talking to everybody who works there, all on a tip from the informant who told them a member of the hit squad hired to kill Joe a butch military, John Lennon-glasses-wearin' chica named "Sgt. Rose" with a heart tattoo on her ankle might be hiding out with the cows. Once again, deputies came up empty.
Know how the MCSO researched the Los Zetas hit squad supposedly hired by the Meraz crime org to do the deed? On Wikipedia. Now that's sad, people. Some of their other info on Los Zetas came from the über-right moonbat site WorldNetDaily, and wacko wing-nut Alex Jones' PrisonPlanet.com. That's right, you can rest easy at night knowing that the MCSO obtains intelligence from a bird-brain like Jones who believes 9/11 was an inside job and that world leaders worship Satan up in Bohemian Grove.
As with most of the Sheriff's Office's smooth moves, this one's a belly-tickler 'til you recall that part about the $500K in taxpayer money it squandered. Or that unlike Barney Fife with his one bullet, these deputies are running around fully locked and loaded, commanded by an upper echelon that's deeply paranoid and delusional. Um, so how much for those tickets to Russia?
Being that this naughty nightingale's both pro-inebriation and pro-illegal aliens (the more the merrier, people), The Bird might normally feel conflicted over a catfight between MADD (Mothers Against Drunk Driving) and MAIA (Mothers Against Illegal Aliens). But once this nut-eater learned of the kerfuffle MADD's kickin' up over MAIA's name, it decided to side with MAIA founder and MILF-y Valley rez Michelle Dallacroce.
Dallacroce, who's nearly the only hottie in the nativist hornets' nest, recently received a cease and desist letter from the mad moms at MADD, informing her she must lay off using the "Mothers Against" part of her org's title, or face a legal firing squad.
"MADD cannot be associated with your organization," writes attorney Anisha Taherzadeh. "And the use of 'Mothers Against' gives a strong implication of a relationship with MADD."
Taherzadeh informed Dallacroce she had 10 days to comply, or be torted. Dallacroce, who's as feisty as she is comely, told those mothers where they could stick it. She fired back a press release to her supporters alleging that MADD's aligned itself with pro-illegals. (Gee, I never see those madres at the meetings.)
"[MADD's] morphed into a National and International Organization which now, unbelievably, supports La Raza and LULAC [League of United Latin American Citizens] members who have served and still serve on their Board of Directors and who are also members of the Trilateral Commission and Council on Foreign Relations," writes Dallacroce on her Web site. Hey, what about the Bilderbergers and the Masons? And throw in the Knights of Columbus and a case of Dos Equis while you're at it.
Wack crackpot she may be, but Dallacroce's right to call this threatened legal action a boxcar of bison biscuits.
Have you ever Googled "Mothers Against"? There's a Mothers Against Meth, Mothers Against Circumcision (ouch!), Mothers Against Brain Injury (is anyone out there for brain injury?), Mothers Against School Hazing (for you wimps), Mothers Against Arpaio (The Bird's fave), and on and on. There's even a Mothers Against Peeing Standing Up (www.mapsu.org), for moms who want to "prevent unnecessary urine stream fragmentation."
I put in a call to MADD spokeswoman Misty Moyse, who indicated that MADD's simply defending its trademark. Asked by this ibis if MADD had sued anybody lately over the issue, Moyse said she didn't know, promised to get back, but never did. Let this loony lapwing make a wild guess: If there are all these "Mothers Against" orgs out there, maybe, just maybe, MADD hasn't been that litigious.
Can't see this going very far, but if Dallacroce does have to change her name, she could always see whether "MILFs Against Illegal Aliens" is taken.
Get the This Week's Top Stories Newsletter
Every week we collect the latest news, music and arts stories — along with film and food reviews and the best things to do this week — so that you’ll never miss Phoenix New Times' biggest stories.