The Government Thinks This Couple Isn't Smart Enough to Be Parents, So It Took Their Kids Away

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Re: The Government Thinks This Couple Isn't Smart Enough to Be Parents, So It Took Their Kids Away

Post by Hugh Akston » 20 Jul 2017, 18:43

nicole wrote:
20 Jul 2017, 18:28
Do you actually want to defend Shackford's article, or just attack CPS?
I can do both.

What we all have in common is that none of us know the truth of the allegations in the article, all the details of these peoples' living situation, or their fitness as parents. Where we differ is that I'm not erring on the side of an agency with a broad history of abusing its power to take children away on vague and flimsy pretexts.
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Re: The Government Thinks This Couple Isn't Smart Enough to Be Parents, So It Took Their Kids Away

Post by Jennifer » 20 Jul 2017, 18:46

Hugh Akston wrote:
20 Jul 2017, 18:43
nicole wrote:
20 Jul 2017, 18:28
Do you actually want to defend Shackford's article, or just attack CPS?
I can do both.

What we all have in common is that none of us know the truth of the allegations in the article, all the details of these peoples' living situation, or their fitness as parents. Where we differ is that I'm not erring on the side of an agency with a broad history of taking children away on vague and flimsy pretexts.
At the same time, you don't want to go to far in the other direction and err on the side of keeping a helpless infant with parents who aren't fit to care for him. That's what makes CPS/child welfare cases so devilishly difficult to figure out -- especially in cases where the child is far too young to say anything about it one way or the other.
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Re: The Government Thinks This Couple Isn't Smart Enough to Be Parents, So It Took Their Kids Away

Post by fyodor » 20 Jul 2017, 19:16

Aresen wrote:
20 Jul 2017, 18:39
I think we all agree that the interests of the child are paramount.

We are dealing with two narratives, each doing their best to smear the other.

By default, libertarians are wary of CPS or any other government agency, but who do we nominate to see that the child's interests are protected? Usually, the parents are better at doing so - even poor parents average better than institutional situations - , but this is not universally true.

Who makes the call and on what basis? The nosy neighbor who thinks that allowing your six year old to play unsupervised in the back yard is child abuse?
Clearly, this is what God made deontology for. ;)

I think I would be hesitant to say we should use a standard of always doing what's in the best interests of the child owing to how difficult to impossible that would be to determine in so many cases. Plus I think parents have a basic right to raise their own kids unless they're clearly fucking it up. And I fear bureaucracy. So I'm good with erring very strongly on the side of the parents, as a general matter.

Aside from how that might apply to the case at hand, just wanted to make that point in response to "best interests of the child".
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Re: The Government Thinks This Couple Isn't Smart Enough to Be Parents, So It Took Their Kids Away

Post by Aresen » 20 Jul 2017, 19:34

fyodor wrote:
20 Jul 2017, 19:16
Aresen wrote:
20 Jul 2017, 18:39
I think we all agree that the interests of the child are paramount.

We are dealing with two narratives, each doing their best to smear the other.

By default, libertarians are wary of CPS or any other government agency, but who do we nominate to see that the child's interests are protected? Usually, the parents are better at doing so - even poor parents average better than institutional situations - , but this is not universally true.

Who makes the call and on what basis? The nosy neighbor who thinks that allowing your six year old to play unsupervised in the back yard is child abuse?
Clearly, this is what God made deontology for. ;)

I think I would be hesitant to say we should use a standard of always doing what's in the best interests of the child owing to how difficult to impossible that would be to determine in so many cases. Plus I think parents have a basic right to raise their own kids unless they're clearly fucking it up. And I fear bureaucracy. So I'm good with erring very strongly on the side of the parents, as a general matter.

Aside from how that might apply to the case at hand, just wanted to make that point in response to "best interests of the child".
I think you make my point better than I did. "The best interests of the child" is half-mirage/half-holy grail.
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Re: The Government Thinks This Couple Isn't Smart Enough to Be Parents, So It Took Their Kids Away

Post by Hugh Akston » 21 Jul 2017, 02:28

Jennifer wrote:
20 Jul 2017, 18:46
Hugh Akston wrote:
20 Jul 2017, 18:43
nicole wrote:
20 Jul 2017, 18:28
Do you actually want to defend Shackford's article, or just attack CPS?
I can do both.

What we all have in common is that none of us know the truth of the allegations in the article, all the details of these peoples' living situation, or their fitness as parents. Where we differ is that I'm not erring on the side of an agency with a broad history of taking children away on vague and flimsy pretexts.
At the same time, you don't want to go to far in the other direction and err on the side of keeping a helpless infant with parents who aren't fit to care for him. That's what makes CPS/child welfare cases so devilishly difficult to figure out -- especially in cases where the child is far too young to say anything about it one way or the other.
If there was strong evidence that the parents weren't fit to care for the kids, then a CPS intervention might be justified. If there were any substantive evidence that the parents were unfit to care for the kids, then it would be worth considering before condemning the CPS' actions. But since the only evidence we have is one report about improper handwashing and sunscreen application, there is no reason to believe the CPS should even be involved, much less be engaged in human trafficking.
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Re: The Government Thinks This Couple Isn't Smart Enough to Be Parents, So It Took Their Kids Away

Post by Jennifer » 21 Jul 2017, 02:45

Hugh Akston wrote:
21 Jul 2017, 02:28
since the only evidence we have is one report about improper handwashing and sunscreen application,
And sleeping with the baby on the floor and almost rolling over on the kid and being easily frustrated and forgetting to feed the dog -- and that, according to the Oregon live story, is only what's in "child welfare records provided by the couple" to the reporter who wrote the column. No mention of what might be in the records the couple did not provide. (If Oregon CPS works the way Connecticut's did when I wrote for the alt-weekly and wrote about a couple of CPS issues, confidentiality goes only one way: CPS cannot share records with the media [rightfully so], but parents can.) And the father is intellectually disabled enough to actually collect disability payments for it, the mother initially had shared custody of her first two kids but they now live with their father (not the man in this story), neither parent has a job, the only reason they're not homeless is because the man's parents are letting them live in their house... whatever's going on, it's more than just one incident each of handwashing and sunscreen application.
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Re: The Government Thinks This Couple Isn't Smart Enough to Be Parents, So It Took Their Kids Away

Post by Hugh Akston » 21 Jul 2017, 04:32

Poverty is not prima facie evidence of unfitness
Developmental disability is not prima facie evidence of unfitness
Living in a property you don't own is not primae facie evidence of unfitness
Unemployment is not prima facie evidence of unfitness
Prior custody disputes are not prima facie evidence of unfitness
Unofficial testimony of people with personal beefs are not any kind of evidence

If you're willing to give the benefit of the doubt to an agency whose ilk has a well-documented history of callous heavy-handed overreaction based on the Rovean mysticism of unknown unknowns, then no appeal I make to the actual evidence at hand is going to convince you.
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Re: The Government Thinks This Couple Isn't Smart Enough to Be Parents, So It Took Their Kids Away

Post by Jennifer » 21 Jul 2017, 08:04

Hugh Akston wrote:
21 Jul 2017, 04:32
Poverty is not prima facie evidence of unfitness
Developmental disability is not prima facie evidence of unfitness
Living in a property you don't own is not primae facie evidence of unfitness
Unemployment is not prima facie evidence of unfitness
Prior custody disputes are not prima facie evidence of unfitness
Unofficial testimony of people with personal beefs are not any kind of evidence
As I said upthread, no one single thing is by itself evidence of unfit parenting -- but everything together, if the claims are true, does indeed look like it.
If you're willing to give the benefit of the doubt to an agency whose ilk has a well-documented history of callous heavy-handed overreaction based on the Rovean mysticism of unknown unknowns, then no appeal I make to the actual evidence at hand is going to convince you.
I'm giving the benefit of the doubt only to the extent that, unlike other CPS horror stories we've seen ("Mom arrested for letting child play alone in fenced-in backyard," "Mom arrested for allowing 9-year-old to spend time in a park filled with children," etc.), this one is not an obvious CPS-is-wrong case, based on the evidence we've been given; it may well be that CPS made the right call here.
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Re: The Government Thinks This Couple Isn't Smart Enough to Be Parents, So It Took Their Kids Away

Post by nicole » 21 Jul 2017, 10:18

Hugh Akston wrote:
20 Jul 2017, 18:43
nicole wrote:
20 Jul 2017, 18:28
Do you actually want to defend Shackford's article, or just attack CPS?
I can do both.

What we all have in common is that none of us know the truth of the allegations in the article, all the details of these peoples' living situation, or their fitness as parents. Where we differ is that I'm not erring on the side of an agency with a broad history of abusing its power to take children away on vague and flimsy pretexts.
Please point to the place where I sided with CPS rather than simply criticizing Shackford's article.

I specifically started my OP by saying that I had eccentric views of parenting and chose not to discuss them. As you know, I don't believe in parental rights, and don't believe it is possible to "steal" a child from its parents. That doesn't make CPS right, but I also start with the belief that the parents, or at least Fabbrini, is in the wrong. There are no good parties here except the kids and it doesn't appear anyone has any idea what they want.
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Re: The Government Thinks This Couple Isn't Smart Enough to Be Parents, So It Took Their Kids Away

Post by nicole » 21 Jul 2017, 10:20

Hugh Akston wrote:
21 Jul 2017, 02:28
Jennifer wrote:
20 Jul 2017, 18:46
Hugh Akston wrote:
20 Jul 2017, 18:43
nicole wrote:
20 Jul 2017, 18:28
Do you actually want to defend Shackford's article, or just attack CPS?
I can do both.

What we all have in common is that none of us know the truth of the allegations in the article, all the details of these peoples' living situation, or their fitness as parents. Where we differ is that I'm not erring on the side of an agency with a broad history of taking children away on vague and flimsy pretexts.
At the same time, you don't want to go to far in the other direction and err on the side of keeping a helpless infant with parents who aren't fit to care for him. That's what makes CPS/child welfare cases so devilishly difficult to figure out -- especially in cases where the child is far too young to say anything about it one way or the other.
If there was strong evidence that the parents weren't fit to care for the kids, then a CPS intervention might be justified. If there were any substantive evidence that the parents were unfit to care for the kids, then it would be worth considering before condemning the CPS' actions. But since the only evidence we have is one report about improper handwashing and sunscreen application, there is no reason to believe the CPS should even be involved, much less be engaged in human trafficking.
Why do you keep saying this?
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Re: The Government Thinks This Couple Isn't Smart Enough to Be Parents, So It Took Their Kids Away

Post by Hugh Akston » 21 Jul 2017, 11:30

nicole wrote:
21 Jul 2017, 10:20
Hugh Akston wrote:
21 Jul 2017, 02:28
Jennifer wrote:
20 Jul 2017, 18:46
Hugh Akston wrote:
20 Jul 2017, 18:43
nicole wrote:
20 Jul 2017, 18:28
Do you actually want to defend Shackford's article, or just attack CPS?
I can do both.

What we all have in common is that none of us know the truth of the allegations in the article, all the details of these peoples' living situation, or their fitness as parents. Where we differ is that I'm not erring on the side of an agency with a broad history of taking children away on vague and flimsy pretexts.
At the same time, you don't want to go to far in the other direction and err on the side of keeping a helpless infant with parents who aren't fit to care for him. That's what makes CPS/child welfare cases so devilishly difficult to figure out -- especially in cases where the child is far too young to say anything about it one way or the other.
If there was strong evidence that the parents weren't fit to care for the kids, then a CPS intervention might be justified. If there were any substantive evidence that the parents were unfit to care for the kids, then it would be worth considering before condemning the CPS' actions. But since the only evidence we have is one report about improper handwashing and sunscreen application, there is no reason to believe the CPS should even be involved, much less be engaged in human trafficking.
Why do you keep saying this?
Because it is the only CPS-documented complaint against the parents mentioned in either article.
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Re: The Government Thinks This Couple Isn't Smart Enough to Be Parents, So It Took Their Kids Away

Post by Warren » 21 Jul 2017, 11:42

I've read the article. I've read this thread.
I haven't read any other comments.
I deem Hugh to be correct.
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Re: The Government Thinks This Couple Isn't Smart Enough to Be Parents, So It Took Their Kids Away

Post by Hugh Akston » 21 Jul 2017, 11:50

Jennifer wrote:
21 Jul 2017, 08:04
Hugh Akston wrote:
21 Jul 2017, 04:32
Poverty is not prima facie evidence of unfitness
Developmental disability is not prima facie evidence of unfitness
Living in a property you don't own is not primae facie evidence of unfitness
Unemployment is not prima facie evidence of unfitness
Prior custody disputes are not prima facie evidence of unfitness
Unofficial testimony of people with personal beefs are not any kind of evidence
As I said upthread, no one single thing is by itself evidence of unfit parenting -- but everything together, if the claims are true, does indeed look like it.
If you're willing to give the benefit of the doubt to an agency whose ilk has a well-documented history of callous heavy-handed overreaction based on the Rovean mysticism of unknown unknowns, then no appeal I make to the actual evidence at hand is going to convince you.
I'm giving the benefit of the doubt only to the extent that, unlike other CPS horror stories we've seen ("Mom arrested for letting child play alone in fenced-in backyard," "Mom arrested for allowing 9-year-old to spend time in a park filled with children," etc.), this one is not an obvious CPS-is-wrong case, based on the evidence we've been given; it may well be that CPS made the right call here.
There is no substantial evidence of abuse or neglect. Extraordinary government actions require extraordinary evidence to support them. Maybe I'm the only one who considers the state taking kids away from their parents to be a big deal.
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Re: The Government Thinks This Couple Isn't Smart Enough to Be Parents, So It Took Their Kids Away

Post by Warren » 21 Jul 2017, 12:00

Hugh Akston wrote:
21 Jul 2017, 11:50
Maybe I'm the only one who considers the state taking kids away from their parents to be a big deal.
HEY!
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Re: The Government Thinks This Couple Isn't Smart Enough to Be Parents, So It Took Their Kids Away

Post by Hugh Akston » 21 Jul 2017, 12:04

*except Warren
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Re: The Government Thinks This Couple Isn't Smart Enough to Be Parents, So It Took Their Kids Away

Post by Aresen » 21 Jul 2017, 12:32

Hugh Akston wrote:
21 Jul 2017, 11:50
There is no substantial evidence of abuse or neglect. Extraordinary government actions require extraordinary evidence to support them. Maybe I'm the only one who considers the state taking kids away from their parents to be a big deal.
Without debating the particulars of this case, I do think it is a big deal. I might quibble on the meaning of 'extraordinary evidence', but I do not like the notion that a caseworker - who may have her own agenda - can decide on her own authority to take children from their parents.

My questions above (and I think Jennifer's as well) related to 'how do we decide?'

Further - and this may cost me my decoder ring - I think that only a government agency should have the power to take children from their parents, and then only with some kind of independent supervision of the process. (I know that government agencies have agendas, but they tend to have fewer such than any private agency I can think of. This is a case of 'least worst', not 'best'.)
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Re: The Government Thinks This Couple Isn't Smart Enough to Be Parents, So It Took Their Kids Away

Post by nicole » 21 Jul 2017, 12:36

Hugh Akston wrote:
21 Jul 2017, 11:30
nicole wrote:
21 Jul 2017, 10:20
Hugh Akston wrote:
21 Jul 2017, 02:28
Jennifer wrote:
20 Jul 2017, 18:46
Hugh Akston wrote:
20 Jul 2017, 18:43
nicole wrote:
20 Jul 2017, 18:28
Do you actually want to defend Shackford's article, or just attack CPS?
I can do both.

What we all have in common is that none of us know the truth of the allegations in the article, all the details of these peoples' living situation, or their fitness as parents. Where we differ is that I'm not erring on the side of an agency with a broad history of taking children away on vague and flimsy pretexts.
At the same time, you don't want to go to far in the other direction and err on the side of keeping a helpless infant with parents who aren't fit to care for him. That's what makes CPS/child welfare cases so devilishly difficult to figure out -- especially in cases where the child is far too young to say anything about it one way or the other.
If there was strong evidence that the parents weren't fit to care for the kids, then a CPS intervention might be justified. If there were any substantive evidence that the parents were unfit to care for the kids, then it would be worth considering before condemning the CPS' actions. But since the only evidence we have is one report about improper handwashing and sunscreen application, there is no reason to believe the CPS should even be involved, much less be engaged in human trafficking.
Why do you keep saying this?
Because it is the only CPS-documented complaint against the parents mentioned in either article.
That is false.
Oregon Live wrote:According to child welfare records provided by the couple, Ziegler "has been sleeping with the baby on the floor and almost rolled over on him. There were also reports that Eric is easily frustrated and often forgets to feed his dog."
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Re: The Government Thinks This Couple Isn't Smart Enough to Be Parents, So It Took Their Kids Away

Post by Hugh Akston » 21 Jul 2017, 12:48

I stand corrected. But none of those are indicative of abuse or neglect justifying intervention by the state.
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Re: The Government Thinks This Couple Isn't Smart Enough to Be Parents, So It Took Their Kids Away

Post by Warren » 21 Jul 2017, 13:01

Aresen wrote:
21 Jul 2017, 12:32
I think that only a government agency should have the power to take children from their parents, and then only with some kind of independent supervision of the process.
Okay. So if someone not the parents takes a child, ipso facto the government should step in to return it to the rightful parents. But the question of just who the rightful parents are is often hotly debated. Though not in this case.
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Re: The Government Thinks This Couple Isn't Smart Enough to Be Parents, So It Took Their Kids Away

Post by nicole » 21 Jul 2017, 13:02

I think taking charge of a child is a huge deal no matter who does it.
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Re: The Government Thinks This Couple Isn't Smart Enough to Be Parents, So It Took Their Kids Away

Post by Warren » 21 Jul 2017, 13:16

nicole wrote:
21 Jul 2017, 13:02
I think taking charge of a child is a huge deal no matter who does it.
Agreed, but however much I question the fitness of a person with a sub 70 IQ to be a parent, the government has a proven record of unfitness.
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Re: The Government Thinks This Couple Isn't Smart Enough to Be Parents, So It Took Their Kids Away

Post by nicole » 21 Jul 2017, 14:50

Warren wrote:
21 Jul 2017, 13:16
nicole wrote:
21 Jul 2017, 13:02
I think taking charge of a child is a huge deal no matter who does it.
Agreed, but however much I question the fitness of a person with a sub 70 IQ to be a parent, the government has a proven record of unfitness.
This is a competition between two fundamentally oppressive institutions. Whether they are "fit" seems beside the point.
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Re: The Government Thinks This Couple Isn't Smart Enough to Be Parents, So It Took Their Kids Away

Post by Warren » 21 Jul 2017, 15:00

nicole wrote:
21 Jul 2017, 14:50
Warren wrote:
21 Jul 2017, 13:16
nicole wrote:
21 Jul 2017, 13:02
I think taking charge of a child is a huge deal no matter who does it.
Agreed, but however much I question the fitness of a person with a sub 70 IQ to be a parent, the government has a proven record of unfitness.
This is a competition between two fundamentally oppressive institutions. Whether they are "fit" seems beside the point.
What? Were talking about ripping a child from the loving arms of its parents.
Oh right, you think childhood itself is an oppressive institution.
Even so, there is nothing here to justify such an extreme measure by a bureaucratic institution.
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Re: The Government Thinks This Couple Isn't Smart Enough to Be Parents, So It Took Their Kids Away

Post by JasonL » 21 Jul 2017, 15:08

I haven't read the case or all of the comments but I'd just say that without direct evidence of physical abuse or neglect sufficient to impair health I don't want an agent of the state to have the authority to remove a child from a family. If pushed on the issue, yes, I'm willing to permit an increased potential for harm to children to keep government out of the business of telling everyone what's acceptable parenting. People who call CPS are largely stupid and insensitive about a diversity of experiences. They may think your kid who draws pictures is violent. They may think you don't feed your kid kale and that's abuse. Allowing CPS more than a micrometer in this space is allowing crazy ass white women to ruin families in numbers.

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Re: The Government Thinks This Couple Isn't Smart Enough to Be Parents, So It Took Their Kids Away

Post by JasonL » 21 Jul 2017, 15:09

A family, even if it is an oppressive institution, is necessarily constrained in it's capacity for harm. Crazy women calling cps on each other bolstered by the mommy police is institutionally horrifying.

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