Crime, what causes it?
Hard times make hard people. But wait a minute, Mainers are not flush with money but don’t turn to crime to make ends meet. Oh sure, there is some welfare fraud but our Maine Governor LePage is riding herd as the High Sheriff to stop welfare program benefit abuse. Putting the spurs to that posse out to curb the waste of benefits going to folks that don’t need them.
To report fraud or abuse complete the online form here or call the Fraud Hotline number at 1-866-348-1129. All reports of fraud and abuse will be fully investigated LePage promises.
But crime in Maine. Folks used to listening to the headline airwaves of a city get numbed to the round the clock drive by shootings, gang violence and other dirty deeds done dirt cheap. But in Maine, there is a reason for less crime. Take car thefts, like in the movies where something exotic is stolen, taken to a back alley garage to be chopped for those shopping for discount auto parts.
In Northern Maine especially, the cars, trucks are part of the family, been around a long time and often you are the second, third or more owner.
High mileage, worked on by back yard mechanics and recycling parts from the junk grave yard happens to stretch those rural Maine incomes.
So if you were someone that stole cars for a living, until ending up behind bars in the crowbar hotel stubbing your toes for it, why would you drive to Madawaska or Masardis or Skowhegan for something new and shiny to take back to the city?
More miles on the frame, the chassis than it takes to get all the way to the Moon and well on your way back in good shape. Too many miles reading on the dashboard that turned over a couple times and tricks to keep the rig running, on life support to limp along just not taught in vocational mechanics 101. Plus the time to get here, snacks on the road, price of gas and slim pickings to select from make it all a lesson in futility. Heck, the fender colors don’t even match and each dent has a story attached to it. Passing inspection is a dicey proposition even if the VIN number and plates are switch-er-rooed.
And while on the subject of cars, trucks, how about those key fobs designed to cut down on vehicle theft?
We don’t lock doors in Northern Maine. It is a nuisance to slide into whatever is parked in the yard driveway and oh no. No keys. Or worse, the door is locked. What’s up with that? Everything stops as you hunt down the keys.
Two wires in the reach under the dash like MacGyver and the motor is purring like a kitten on cat nip. Not stealing it the five finger discount way, just too lazy to go looking for the keys. Not needing them on the older rides.
But these new anti-theft devices that supposedly lower your car insurance premiums create a bigger expense headache. If the key fob dies in actions and wears out, won’t unlock a door, shows error message of broken key when gingerly slid in the ignition slot.
No ignition Houston. That is a big problem. You have to get that car or truck back to the dealership for computer re-programing. Can you say ramp truck or hitching a ride with something dangling a hook off the back end?
Dig deep in the wallet or purse.
For the coin to buy a new $150 or more fob to replace the old one that went bad. That repair involves more than a NASCAR quick jump start and you are back on the road clipping off the road mile markers singing Johnny Cash’s Ring of Fire Or Folsom Prison Blue. Or Patsy Cline’s Walking After Midnight, Crazy or whatever the ditty.
People help each other out in communities in Maine, out on the open highways.
Don’t be surprised when someone buys you a round of dry gas for your fuel system. To get you where you gotta go, where you were headed. To keep you between the snow banks on both sides of the ribbon of road way as you motor down the winter pike.
Why else is there less crime in Maine? Hope it has something to do with the way we are raised. We have to work for everything we have. So we take better care of it when nothing is handed to you or taken for granted.
And we figure other people worked hard for what they have too so leave it be. Respect each other’s stuff, personal property, their beliefs too.
And here’s a story I heard over the weekend about a local Maine oil dealer.
They had a big office safe that suddenly would not open sesame. When the tumblers were dialed in with the correct numbers written on the sheet taped under the top drawer bottom panel of the book keeper’s desk.
The abracadabra spell did not work for some unknown reason getting into the locked safe.
The far away trained locksmith used to working on these older then the hills safes like the one in Northern Maine was no small expense and was a scheduling nightmare to come all this way for one little job. Luckily the oil dealer powers to be got wind of someone locally that had a good batting average. Of breaking into safes legitimately.
They rang him up, only took four numbers at the time on a small Maine town phone exchange.
(We also still only have one area code of 207 to take care of everyone’s phone, fax, whatever phone line for Maine information deliveries.) He trots up to the office, pushes his hands up and out like a safe cracker with the fingers intertwined to prepare for the task.
And leans in, puts his ear to the cold black safe door. As he fumbles with the tumblers. And presto, door opens. The company representatives are relieved, over joyed. Until they ask how much for the safe entry? The response “$100”.
Jaws drop, grumbling starts and the sound of the safe door closing heard. Locking it up tight as a drum happens again. Each of the oil company workers tries their hand at cracking the safe to not avail. Then pleas for help getting the door open again are heard in a unison of whining. Which the local legit safe cracker is coaxed to do. To perform his exercise again to unlock the doors so the ledgers, whatever of importance inside could be fished out. The check for $100 starts being drafted as a hand goes up, and “hold it” is heard. “The cost is $200”. Quick math, thinking on your feet would show in your head it was $100 per safe door opening operation.
Maine, less crime, more common sense, lots more respect for other’s feelings and their property both real and personal.
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MOOERS REALTY 69 North Street Houlton Maine 04730