A Friend Needs Just a Little More to Put Him Over the Finish Line

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So, y’all know I like to help worthy causes when I can. Many times, I just contribute money to various causes – animal charities, veterans groups, cancer research, etc. Other times, like these days, I don’t have a penny to spare (child molesting squatters destroying my house, insurance company messing with me, etc., but that’s a different story), so I like to either share worthy causes on social media, or blog about them.

A friend of mine – a vet, a writer, a husband, a dad, and an all-around good guy has decided to open a business. He’s worked five different jobs to support his family, but has been damn miserable. This is his dream. He wants to sell barbeque plate lunches from a food truck and also do catering. From what I gather (never actually had his ribs) from folks who have, his barbecue recipes are like a little bit of pork heaven!

The name? Aloha Snack Bar!

Jon is a good guy. He’s an aspiring author, a passionate friend of the sci-fi community, and an ardent Sad Puppy. He’s bright, talented, and motivated. And really… he only needs like $5,000 more to put him over the top to start his business.

So I figured since I’m broke, I’d help the only other way I know how: by spreading the word.

Please help. Go to Jon’s Kickstarter campaign page, and read about his plans. And if you can pitch in a few sheckels, or encourage others to do so – both in the military community and elsewhere, please do!

House Update

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I recently was invited to do an interview on Dan Lane’s Rental Income Podcast. Dan had read my saga with the Coopers after they squatted in my house and subsequently destroyed it, and he invited me on his show to tell my story.

Every landlord’s nightmare. That’s what it’s called.You can listen to it here.

My basic message to anyone considering renting their property is this: treat it as a business. Do not be nice. Do not allow your tenants to consistently pay you late without imposing penalties, because you’re a nice person and you feel sorry for them. Do not allow them leeway. Your house is your business, and you are a landlord, not their pal and not their mommy. Treat it as such.

In retrospect, I should have charged them penalties for being consistently late with the rent.

In retrospect, I should have demanded they get rid of their animal menagerie, which they kept in my house in violation of the lease.

In retrospect, I should have treated them as the cockroaches they are.

But my story is a cautionary tale, so feel free to listen to the podcast.

In the meantime my house is back on the market. The repairs from the thieving squatters David and Pamela Cooper are now finished, and the house looks great!

101 Maryland Dr, Stephens City, VA 22655

It’s clean, it’s freshly painted, all the Coopers’ crap has been taken to the dump. The carpets in the room they allowed their animals to use as a bathroom have been replaced along with the padding, and the sub floor has been fixed. Not a trace of these destructive vermin has been left!

There are more photos in the actual listing. Thirty of them, in fact, so check it out, and please spread the word to anyone thinking about moving to Northern Virginia!

David Scott Cooper: Child Molester, Liar, Thief, Destroyer of Lives

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I apologize for the lack of writing lately. It’s been an incredibly trying time. My lawyer and I had requested that the trial to evict the “tenants” that were occupying my house be moved up due to the financial hardship the squatting thieves David Scott Cooper and Pamela Ayers Cooper were causing me and my family. The original trial was scheduled for 09 July, but we were granted a 19 June court date, where I finally received possession of my property.

scummy hag

This is Pamela Ayers Cooper in the middle – one of the people who stole my property and ultimately caused so much damage to the place. 

child fucker 2 child fuker

This is registered sex offender David Scott Cooper. His official sex offender registry information is here. As you can see, he screwed a child age 13-15 and went to prison for his crimes.

The Coopers never showed up for the hearing. As a matter of fact, they were seen by several friends of mine packing frantically and moving out the day of the trial. The cowards left rather than face a judge to answer for stealing my property. And the mess they left for me to clean up was EPIC!

They left a ton of garbage in my home, ruined the carpets, messed up the hardwood floors on the main floor with water damage, and left rotten food in the refrigerator, as well as disgusting clothes and shoes upstairs in the bedrooms. They had a clause in their lease for four small dogs. They kept four dogs, two cats, two flying squirrels, and a parrot. The cats pissed in the house and saturated the carpets in one of the rooms upstairs so badly, it soaked through to the padding, and warped the flooring underneath. The carpet in that room had to be torn up and the flooring had to be cleaned and resealed. Now, I have to pay to get new carpets installed in there.

There’s so much junk left in that house, the contractor rented a dumpster, and it took two days to dispose of all the crap. They left a ton of junk in the garage, including some materials that the contractor initially thought was homemade explosives! I’m not kidding. I had to have the police come out there last week with bomb sniffing dogs to ensure it was nothing dangerous. Luckily it wasn’t. It was some really nasty crap in a slow cooker. But it was bad.


They had the electricity turned off, so when storms came through the area, the sump pump did not come on. There is an inch of water in the basement. Now, I’ll take partial responsibility for this. I got so busy at work, it took me a couple of days to get the electricity turned back on. But in my defense, I work two jobs without which it would be impossible for me to survive – in part thanks to the financial hardship these thieves caused.

They violated their lease in so many ways, I’ve lost count. They’ve destroyed my house. They haven’t paid rent and they’ve skipped out without leaving a forwarding address. This is AFTER stealing my house for three months.

This has been an absolute nightmare, and it’s not over yet. If I have any hope of selling this property, it needs to get repaired. The contractors have done a good job so far, and the painters are out there now as well.

junk

Here is the junk they left in my driveway.

floor damage 2 floor damage

Here is the water damage they cased to the hardwood floors.

broken light

They busted a porch light.

basement basement 3 basement 2

And they left all sorts of junk in the basement.

As you can imagine, I’m floored by all this! They still owe back rent, and the damages… Just wow.

So we’re going to court again for a hearing for damages. The assessment isn’t done yet. Not even close.

This ordeal just keeps on going and going, and I keep wondering if this will ever be over. Right now it feels like forever.

I have some amazing friends

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The saga of the child-raping, thieving squatters continues. David and Pamela Cooper continue to infest my house without paying rent, as if somehow they’re entitled to my property – and apparently with the judge’s blessing.

This has been a tremendously difficult time – both financially and emotionally. The stress has been unreal. The thieving, lying child rapist and his wife don’t care about any kind of grief they cause others. They’ve stolen my house, and continue to refuse to leave.

As I mentioned before, my friends have been an incredible source of support! I have a network of beautiful, talented, passionate, supportive friends and acquaintances, who have picked up this cause to help me fight this horrid injustice. They’ve restored my hope, and that’s pretty difficult to do, given the fact that I’m paying 80 percent of my takehome pay for housing (my rent, two mortgages, etc.) and have to rely on the kindness of others to ensure I don’t lose my credit rating and my career.

Between my friend Amanda who started this incredible fundraiser to help me with any legal bills, and all the incredibly kind people who have offered not only financial, but also emotional support, and the enormous outpouring of good wishes, and my buddy Dennis, of Dragon Leatherworks, who auctioned off a pair of truly incredible “Sad Puppy” holsters to help me, and the numerous friends who have blogged this issue, the Internet truly restored my faith in humanity.

For those of you who don’t know Oleg Volk, he’s an amazing photographer and artist. Oleg and I have been friends for close to 15 years now. He’s an incredible talent! Oleg decided to help by doing a fundraiser for me, and if you know anything about his work, this is a huge deal! Oleg is offering a poster print of your choice to the highest contributor between now and June 1, inclusive. Just donate to the cause and let him know when you have, and your choice of photo in print form is yours.

Not even kidding!

Check out Oleg’s blog for details. It’s pretty amazing!

Thank you, Oleg, for being an incredible friend. And thank you to all of you again for your help and support!

Things that make you proud

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Normally, not a lot of things make me cry… well, maybe lately, because of the unreal stress of having thieves steal my house, but generally no. But this week has been different and emotional.

Unless you’ve been living under a rock for the past few days, you’ve heard of the riots in Baltimore this week that resulted in attacks on police and destruction of property, as well as school cancellations. The violence is personal for me, because I lived in Baltimore for several years. I graduated from the Johns Hopkins University. I had a house there. I worked there. I have friends there. For several years, it was my city too, and to watch it turn to chaos was jarring.

But among all the negatives – the looting, the burning, the pillaging and destruction, there were some rays of sunshine.

Baltimore residents cleaning up the CVS that was damaged and looted.

cvs

The Baltimore mom who yanked her errant offspring from the streets around after she saw him among the rioting crowds. Kudos to her, despite the douchey, hanky-wringing, and pants soiling by the “everything is racism” crowd about people applauding the “beating of a black child.” It’s called parents taking responsibility for their children, you idiots. Learn from her!

The folks who helped and supported the police as they worked to control the unrest.

police

All of this fills me with SO much hope!

While this story fills me with tears of joy, because I’m a veteran… because I’m a woman… because…

A patio chair smashed the sandwich shop window.

Glass fell around Midshipman Brad Kadlubowski, seated before a window, at the Subway shop in Baltimore.

Inside, a father steered his wife and two children to the back of the shop on Saturday. His son has asthma; the father worried about tear gas.

Another chair smashed another window.

Everyone to the back, the midshipmen instructed.

There’s this commercial for the Navy on TV nowadays that I see sometimes. It features a bunch of Navy folks in all types of different jobs standing in defense of civilians. It’s beautifully done, and it’s a brilliant campaign. These Midshipmen embody everything in that great ad. They embody everything a character in “A Few Good Men” said about the Marines in that particular case, but it really applies to all of our military. “Because they stand on a wall and say, ‘Nothing’s going to hurt you tonight, not on my watch.‘”

Beautifully said, and beautifully expressed. My special feelings of warmth go to Midshipman Madisen Grinnell. When caught in the protests, these Midshipmen directed families and  to the back of the Subway shop, with women and children furthest back for safety. But not Midshipman Grinnell. “You’re in the military and a midshipmen — you should be in the front,” she insisted.

In the midst of all the drama and tears, Midshipman Grinnell, her male friends, and the folks in Baltimore who stood shoulder to shoulder united for peace, have been bright spots in an otherwise horrid week.

Hope in humanity a bit more restored than it was a few days ago.

Thank you.

Heartache

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Heartache is watching everything you have worked for stolen by unscrupulous, morally offensive, thieving, self serving jerks.

Heartache is having your son come to you and say, “Mom, I know you would have never accepted my money, but I was going to put money in your wallet from my every pay check to help you and just leave a little for myself.”

Heartache is watching the justice system in which you had so much faith screw you.

That is heartache.

I should really post more

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I know it’s been weeks since I’ve written anything. I needed a break. I haven’t really been in the mood to write. First, there was the snow, which prompted me to sit around in bed all day in my pajamas drinking hot tea and watching Law & Order reruns.

And now… I’m off on temporary duty to Miami.

I know… HARDSHIP! But you’d be surprised how crappy it feels to go from a foot of snow in DC to 85-degree heat with 10000 percent humidity down in southern Florida! So if you have a snarky comment about how you feel oh-so-sorry for me being down here, keep it to yourself, punkin, because all you’ll get from me is a one-fingered salute.

As for what I’ve been up to?

Well…

For those of you who don’t know, I’ve been a regular part of the GunBlog Variety Cast along with some awesome folks, including Sean Sorrentino and Erin Palette. I’ve been doing this for a while now, but I’ve been an abject FAIL at blogging about it, because I’m lazy. So go over there and listen. Surprisingly enough, I don’t bloviate about guns on this one, but rather foreign policy. Erin talks about prepping, Sean and Adam talk about… stuff, and other incredible, talented, and intelligent folks talk about guns and tech. It’s fun. You should check it out, if you want to find out what I sound like on the air (shout out to my broadcaster background!).

And no, I don’t curse.

So what’s been going on?

Well, for one, we kicked Maduro and his band of Venezuelan thugs in the nuts with some sanctions last week. And if you hear them whining that this means the United States is about to launch into some kind of military action against them, you can laugh a little, because they’re either ignorant, or just want to raise the level of whining. Fact is that they were sanctioned under the International Emergency Economic Powers Act (IEEPA), which authorizes the President to regulate commerce after declaring a “national emergency” in response to any unusual or extraordinary foreign threat. It certainly doesn’t authorize any kind of military action.

Specifically, the E.O. targets those determined by the Department of the Treasury, in consultation with the Department of State, to be involved in:

  • actions or policies that undermine democratic processes or institutions;
  • significant acts of violence or conduct that constitutes a serious abuse or violation of human rights, including against persons involved in antigovernment protests in Venezuela in or since February 2014;
  • actions that prohibit, limit, or penalize the exercise of freedom of expression or peaceful assembly; or
  • public corruption by senior officials within the Government of Venezuela.

The E.O. also authorizes the Department of the Treasury, in consultation with the Department of State, to target any person determined:

  • to be a current or former leader of an entity that has, or whose members have, engaged in any activity described in the E.O. or of an entity whose property and interests in property are blocked or frozen pursuant to the E.O.; or
  • to be a current or former official of the Government of Venezuela;

What does this all mean? It means we don’t like corrupt thugs who steal money from their own people while undermining their basic rights using the U.S. financial system. So we cut off their access to it.

What else has been going on?

The Justice Department determined there was no basis for continued legal action against Darren Wilson, who last year shot Michael Brown in an action which was determined to be justified. Of course, Holder and the DOJ can’t leave well enough alone, so even though the shoot was good, they put out a report citing racism in the Ferguson PD writ large in an obvious attempt to mollify the screeching race hustlers. It is interesting to note that the report cites revenue generation being emphasized in the PD’s approach to law enforcement.

Patrol assignments and schedules are geared toward aggressive enforcement of Ferguson’s municipal code, with insufficient thought given to whether enforcement strategies promote public safety or unnecessarily undermine community trust and cooperation. Officer evaluations and promotions depend to an inordinate degree on “productivity,” meaning the number of citations issued. Partly as a consequence of City and FPD priorities, many officers appear to see some residents, especially those who live in Ferguson’s predominantly African-American neighborhoods, less as constituents to be protected than as potential offenders and sources of revenue.

This is a problem that’s not just limited to Ferguson. Nothing new and different there, and I’ve often been appalled at the outrageous fees and penalties imposed on citizens for engaging in a simple mistake or minor traffic violation. So I get it. It sucks.

But in the same breath, the DOJ’s report claims that “The harms of Ferguson’s police and court practices are borne disproportionately by African Americans, and there is evidence that this is due in part to intentional discrimination on the basis of race.”

Lemme ask ya something. If it is obvious that the city’s focus is on revenue generation, rather than public safety, and therefore, it views the PREDOMINANTLY AFRICAN-AMERICAN city as a source of revenue generation, wouldn’t it stand to reason that in a predominantly black city, the brunt of those revenue generation policies would be… um… black, and that the reason Ferguson’s law enforcement practices and policies overwhelmingly impact African-Americans is because THAT’S WHO PREDOMINANTLY LIVES IN THE FRIGGIN’ CITY?

But hey, some of us don’t go looking for racism under every bed and around every corner.

In response to said report, Ferguson’s city manager has resigned and a state judge will be in charge of all Ferguson cases. Every town needs scapegoats, I suppose. That, of course, didn’t mollify the stampeding hordes, and just this past weekend, two police officers were shot after working crowd control in Ferguson. Police charged Jeffrey Williams with the shooting. The suspect admits he fired the weapon, but claims he was aiming at someone else in the crowd.

I’m trying to wrap my head at the amount of fucking stupid it takes to make such an admission. Stupid #1) You fire your weapon into a crowd of fucking people. Stupid #2) You admit to doing so, but hey… you weren’t aiming at police, and I guess you were expecting to hit your mark dead on. In a crowd. You dimwitted, miserable FAIL of a fucktard. Stupid #2) The only two people you conveniently hit are two cops. How propitious, considering the demonstrations were all about supposed police “racism.”

And, of course, Holder has been sniveling about how much acts of violence against law enforcement are not to be tolerated. Never mind he and his DOJ are the ones fomenting said unrest!

OK, enough about that.

There was supposedly a ceasefire agreement reached in Ukraine. Well, it was reached, but if you’re thinking that it’s somehow been effective, you’d be wrong. NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg says the ceasefire is “fragile.” I think while violence has been reduced some, he’s the master of the understatement. If you want a boots on the ground (so to speak) glimpse into what’s going on, you should follow U.S. Ambassador to Ukraine Geoffrey Pyatt on Twitter. The Russians will tell you it’s not their fault – that it’s the separatists failing to abide by the ceasefire – that they have no control over said militants. Um… yeah… right. If you think that Moscow isn’t behind the continuous arming of separatists in the region, I have this bridge…

Yes, I know I should keep up with my blogging, but even I need a break sometimes, so if I’m not around, it’s because I’m busy having a life.

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