Boulder cops declare ‘rock stacking’ a jailable offense to stop local artist

Michael Grab, a Boulder artist who goes by the name Gravity Glue, said that police threatened to ticket or jail him for creating stacked river rock sculptures that the community has been enjoying for years.

In a Monday Facebook post, Grab explained that a Boulder police officer had informed him that there would be stiff penalties for continuing his art.

“For the past 7 years i have been creating this art in and around Boulder, Colorado, USA. Nearly every day!” he wrote. “[J]ust this weekend, one police officer has decided that balancing rocks in Boulder, Colorado is now illegal, obscurely referencing two city codes [5-4-8 and 5-4-2] about ‘destruction of public property’ in relation to rocks.”

“So now the police have belligerently taken it upon themselves to write tickets and/or arrest ANYONE balancing rocks in Boulder, CO. and specifically threatened to ticket me and/or arrest me if they catch me in the future,” the artist lamented. “[I] encourage as many people as possible (especially locals) to contact the city council here in Boulder and voice your support for this long standing tradition in Boulder. [I]t is something that an overwhelming portion of the community supports.”

Grab said that he would be forced to leave Boulder if the city council did not step in to clarify the city ordinances.

Rooster Magazine
wondered why Boulder police felt the need to focus on “Draconian rock art witch hunt” instead of higher-than-average rates of rape and theft.

“Why is any of this important? Because if we ban every bizzaro Boulder character that causes a stir (see: nude gardening woman), we’re left with nothing more than a college town with a Target that’s about to become Google’s new headquarters,” the magazine noted. “At a time like this, we need less kid gloves in the form of overzealous legislation, and more attention paid to retaining the city’s core personality. And if you don’t like that, f*cking move to Westminster.”

“Keep Boulder weird, and keep Gravity Glue making weird ass rock art.”

In the end, the call to action worked. Grab said that the city attorney personally called to let him know that rock stacking was not illegal in Boulder.

“UPDATE: holy shit! Maybe the support was more than i anticipated!!” he exclaimed. “[J]ust got a call from the city attorney personally here in Boulder telling me that he has ordered the police to NOT cite rock balancing under the city codes [I] mentioned below!!!”

Sounds to me Like a police officer got his panties in a bunch, And for the life of me I cannot figure out why……..

Ex-US Speaker indicted over $3.5 million in payments

Former U.S. House Speaker Dennis Hastert agreed to pay $3.5 million in hush money to keep a person from the town where he was a longtime high school teacher silent about “prior misconduct” by the Illinois Republican who once was second in line to the U.S. presidency, according to a federal grand jury indictment handed down Thursday.

The indictment, which doesn’t describe the alleged misconduct by Hastert, charges the 73-year-old with one count of evading bank regulations by withdrawing $952,000 in increments of less than $10,000 to skirt reporting requirements. He also is charged with one count of lying to the FBI about the reason for the unusual withdrawals.

Each count of the indictment carries a maximum penalty of five years in prison and a $250,000 fine.

Hastert did not return email and phone messages from The Associated Press seeking comment on the allegations. Hastert, who had worked as a lobbyist in Washington, D.C., since shortly after he left Congress in 2007, resigned from Dickstein Shapiro LLC, a spokesman for the lobbying and law firm said Thursday.

The indictment alleges Hastert withdrew a total of around $1.7 million in cash from various bank accounts from 2010 to 2014, then provided the money to a person identified in the indictment only as “Individual A.” Hastert allegedly agreed to pay the person $3.5 million, but never apparently paid that full amount.

It notes that Hastert was a high school teacher and coach from 1965 to 1981 in suburban Yorkville, about 50 miles west of Chicago. While the indictment says Individual A has been a resident of Yorkville and has known Hastert most of Individual A’s life, it doesn’t describe their relationship.


View gallery


U.S. House of Representatives Speaker Dennis Hastert (R-IL) leaves the Committee on Standards of Off …

The indictment says Hastert agreed to the payments after multiple meetings in 2010. It says that “during at least one of the meetings, Individual A and defendant discussed past misconduct by defendant against Individual A that had occurred years earlier” and Hastert agreed to pay $3.5 million “in order to compensate for and conceal his prior misconduct against Individual A.”

The indictment says that between 2010 and 2012 Hastert made 15 cash withdrawals of $50,000 from bank accounts at Old Second Bank, People’s State Bank and Castle Bank and gave cash to Individual A around every six weeks.

Around April 2012, bank officials began questioning Hastert about the withdrawals, and starting in July of that year, Hastert reduced the amounts he withdrew at a time to less than $10,000 — apparently so they would not run afoul of a regulation designed to stop illicit activity such as money laundering, according to the indictment.

Among the focuses of the FBI investigation was whether Hastert, in the words of the indictment, was “the victim of a criminal extortion related to, among other matters, his prior positions in government.” The court document does not elaborate.

Legal experts said extortion cases can be tricky.


View gallery


In this March 5, 2008, file photo, former U.S. House Speaker Dennis Hastert speaks to lawmakers on t …

In mulling over whom to charge, prosecutors often must decide who is the greater victim: the person being extorted or the person doing the extorting, said Chicago-based attorney and former federal prosecutor Phil Turner.

Jeff Cramer, a former federal prosecutor and head of the Chicago office of the investigation firm Kroll, said investigators could have concluded Hastert’s alleged misconduct was “more egregious than the extortion.”

Investigators questioned Hastert on Dec. 8, 2014, and he lied about why he had been withdrawing so much money at a time, the indictment alleges. He told investigators he did it because he didn’t trust the banking system, the indictment says.

“Yeah … I kept the cash. That’s what I am doing,” it quotes Hastert as saying.

Hastert, who also maintains a home in the Chicago suburb of Plano several miles northwest of Yorkville, was a little-known lawmaker from suburban Chicago when chosen to succeed conservative Newt Gingrich as speaker. Hastert was picked after favored Louisiana Rep. Bob Livingston resigned following his admission of several sexual affairs.


View gallery


In this March, 5, 2008 file photo, former U.S. House Speaker Dennis Hastert is overcome with emotion …

As speaker, Hastert pushed President George W. Bush’s legislative agenda, helping pass a massive tax cut and expanding Medicare prescription drug benefits.

He retired from Congress in 2007 after eight years as speaker, making him the longest-serving Republican House speaker. He was second in line to the presidency during those years after the vice president.

Sadly this becoming the business as usual instead of the exception

Retro of the day: Bonnie Tyler

It’s a Heartache” is a song recorded by Welsh singer Bonnie Tyler for her second studio album, Natural Force (1978). The song was recorded in the same year by Juice Newton as a standalone single. It was written by Ronnie Scott and Steve Wolfe, Tyler’s at-the-time managers, and produced by David Mackay.

Tyler’s version received positive reviews from music critics. The song reached number three in the United States and number four in the United Kingdom. With physical sales in excess of 6 million copies, Tyler’s version is one of the best-selling singles of all time.[1] Tyler has re-recorded the song several times, most notably as a bilingual duet with French singer Kareen Antonn in 2004.