Friday, June 16, 2017

RIP Dave Armstrong

How sad to learn of the passing of former Louisville Mayor Dave Armstrong. Dave was Louisville's last mayor prior to the merger of city and county governments

Dave also was the visionary behind the Louisville Extreme Skate Park. That brought the X Games to Louisville, including tourists and the economic benefit that follows. It gave Louisville youth a fun place to get some exercise. And it made Louisville hip; Dave did all this before any of us had even heard of Extreme sports.

Most importantly, Dave was a kind and decent man. He was smart, creative, and made his corner of the world better through public service.

Dave was a Democrat whom Republicans and Independents could like and respect. We will miss him.

Wednesday, June 7, 2017

Louisville Blows Past Chicago - Not In A Good Way

The Pegasus Institute -- the new conservative/libertarian think tank here -- has just released a fascinating report on the the epidemic of violent crime in Louisville.

The statistics are beyond appalling. The murder rate is much worse than most of us thought. This becomes apparent, for example, when one looks at the crime rate inside the Watterson Expressway as distinguished from the entire metro area.

Here are a few statistics from Pegasus Institute Executive Director Jordan Harris:

  • In 2016, 71.18% (84 of 118) of all homicides investigated by LMPD took place in zip codes that are either wholly or partially inside the Watterson.
  • Using a conservative estimate , the population inside the Watterson Expressway is just under 275,000 residents,  meaning that with 84 total murders in 2016, this area had a murder rate of 30.5 per 100,000. If considered in isolation, this would be the 8th most dangerous major city in America, edging out Chicago, Illinois, which has a murder rate of 27.7 per 100,000. (INSIDE OF THE WATTERSON EXPRESSWAY IS MORE DANGEROUS THAN CHICAGO)
  • The majority of homicides in 2016 took place in five individual zip codes (listed in order of total); 40211, 40203, 40210, 40212, and 40215. These five areas accounted for just over 77% (65 of 84) of the murders inside the Watterson Expressway, 55% of murders investigated by LMPD (65 of 118), and 52.4% (65 of 124) of all murders in Jefferson County. Four of these five zip codes had an increase in homicides in 2016, helping to push the city-wide total to an all-time high.
  • The jump from 56 LMPD homicide investigation in 2014 to 118 in 2016, a 110% increase, is by far the largest jump in Louisville’s history, surpassing the previous two-year high of 44.7%, and larger than any other similar sized metro areas. (THIS IS NOT JUST A NATIONAL PROBLEM. THE SPIKE HAS BEEN MUCH GREATER IN LOUISVILLE)
  • The illicit drug market (i.e. opioid crisis) is not the cause of this spike. 
  • A study by Mathew Phillips, a research analyst with the Rochester Youth Development Study at the State University of New York at Albany, examined a panel of delinquent youth and found that the drug dealers within a gang are actually less likely to use weapons or commit certain violent acts than their non-drug dealing fellow gang members
  • Anonymous sources within LMPD confirmed that last year, of the 118 murders investigated by LMPD, 100 murders were considered gang related.