Thoughts From The Publisher’s Desk

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Using a fictional cab company to target drug dealers and users in Ocean City was a smart move for the Ocean City Police Department and other local authorities.

Although there’s a bit of a game underway in public circles to identify the identity of the undercover cop, that’s not important here. Calling out the cop would only put the officer and his or her family in jeopardy. What is relevant is recognizing the courage and intelligence behind this operation, generally, and this undercover cop, specifically.

This was a well-intentioned, covert operation that yielded 91 charges of distribution of controlled dangerous substances (CDS) and 28 charges of conspiracy to distribute CDS, leaning to bonds surpassing $4.5 million.

In the days since Monday’s press conference, there have been reports from some in Ocean City that this operation only resulted in the arrest of a handful of true dealers, while the rest were a result of the cab driver (undercover cop) complaining of pain and residents offering a pill here and there, supposedly legally prescribed to them, to ease the pain. It was argued some of the folks charged were merely helping out the whiny cab driver and surely had no clue the driver was a cop.

That may or may not be true, and it really does not matter actually. There’s no disputing the operation was a success in that it resulted in the arrest of some dealers and in some ways an argument can be made it’s corroborative police work at its best.

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As soon as I heard the name of the cab company the OCPD created — Tipsy Taxi — I thought of Seacrets owner Leighton Moore.

For those who don’t know, the water service Seacrets provides to its customers who come by boat is called “Tipsy Taxi.” There are a couple of them actually using running on summer days.

For what it’s worth, Moore has no problem with the OCPD essentially copying what he named his boat taxis and not asking permission.

Last November, readers will remember Moore won a years-long legal battle with a travel destination company over trademark infringement of the Seacrets name.

Reached this week, Moore said he had no problems with the OCPD’s name choice and applauded the undercover operation.

“I don’t have any registration on it nor do I plan on seeking one. It doesn’t bother me that they did that. They have to do what they have to do, and it doesn’t bother me at all,” Moore said. “I hope they got the big guys and got some drugs off the streets.”

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The 2012 Presidential election is unfortunately still nine months away, but the national media is already talking about 2016, believe it or not.

In Sunday’s issue, The New York Times examined possible Democratic candidates for the 2016 race.

Although she says her public career is over after her stint as Secretary of State, whether it be at the end of this year or in 2016 depending on President Obama’s fate in November, Hilary Rodham Clinton is the front runner, according to the analysis.

However, mentioned prominently and favorably in the story as a legitimate candidate was Maryland’s own Martin O’Malley, whose second term as governor expires in 2014 and he’s ineligible for re-election. However, it will not mark the end of his political aspirations and there are many who think he’s a legitimate presidential candidate.

This is interesting because I have heard from knowledgeable sources that O’Malley is the state Democratic Party’s choice to replace long-time Maryland Sen. Barbara Mikulski, who eventually has to retire. The idea being O’Malley would have two terms as governor as well as mayor of Baltimore and a Senate seat to propel him to the national stage.

That’s a long way off but it’s a lot more exciting than this year’s presidential election, which eventually I will have to start paying attention to, reluctantly.

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