Brock Townsend shares with us:
I came across this article today, entitled Are Militias a Menace? It mainly focuses on pro-government militias during times of civil war abroad, however, there are some very important takeaways from this article. To wit:
The distinction between “gang” and “militia” — ties with the government
Unlike rebels or criminals, whose actions are necessarily illegal and opposed by the state, these groups enjoy semi-official or informal ties with the government.
Liberal use of state-backed militias (i.e., “gangs”) to abuse the populace and disabuse themselves of the blame
Their statistical findings (published here and summarized here) show that the appearance of militias is strongly correlated with violations of human rights, particularly when governments want to maximize harm to civilians while minimizing blame for the action of armed groups that are, ostensibly, “free agents.”
In other words, the SPLC can s*** it!
And don’t even get me started on the Fast & Furious government-gang thing!
Remember that game growing up?
John Lott gives us yet another perspective:
From the Wall Street Journal:
The Chicago Tribune delivered the “first-ever scientific study” of the nation’s biggest camera program. Researchers commissioned by the paper found little or no safety benefit: Mid-intersection “T-bones” declined, but rear-end collisions sharply increased as drivers slammed on the brakes to avoid a ticket. Most damning, the Trib cited the city’s “long-standing reliance on using the lowest possible yellow light time” to maximize revenues even at the cost of encouraging more accidents. . . .
Apparently, the message is getting out as the company that have made these cameras are slowly exiting the business.
With Redflex losing money in North America, its Australian parent company recently instructed him to “de-risk the business” by diversifying into electronic toll-taking and traffic management. Nonetheless Mr. Saunders remains keen to rescue the reputation of photo enforcement, even if that seems like a Hail Mary at this point. . . .
My ex lived in Philly for about 10 years, and they had a government contractor maintaining the traffic signals so poorly that both turned green. And her new car was totaled.
And there was no one to answer for it from the government works.
Yes, my friends, government works for the common good!
NO…stop a minute!
Civil Asset Forfeiture
The Washington Post has been running a very good series of investigative reports on how police departments around the nation have been seizing billions of dollars from often innocent citizens without charging them with any crime. That link takes you to the first installment. On the side, near the top, are the links to the other five pieces. It’s time for Congress to address this issue nationally. Somehow, I doubt that Republicans will allow that.
I’ve been concerned for years about how The Federal Government (through the IRS) can garnishee, attach, freeze,
steal assets in advance of due process. Then it’s up to the poor object of these seizures to fight to get said assets back!
Seemed kind of ass-backwards to me(?)
Now (or perhaps for some time) police departments are engaging in similar behavior!
I’m reminded of a local tale (from the 70’s) in this area, wherein a guy made a police report subsequent to a business burglary. And reported the losses to his insurance company. Later, he found some assets in the rubble he had previously thought stolen, and attempted to amend his report.
He was charged with FRAUD, FILING A FALSE REPORT, AND HIS ASSETS SEIZED!
As he sat in the middle of his printing business, watching agents remove everything, crying, he asked one, “Why?”
“Because we can.” was the terse response.
What is it Lord Acton said of government? Absolutely.
The Justice for Mike Brown Ferguson protest group released its list of potential targets following the decision by the St. Louis County Courthouse on the Mike Brown case.
The published map shows expected landmarks like the Ferguson City Hall and the County Courthouse.
But it also marks things that have NOTHING to do with the Michael Brown situation, like Anheuser Busch and Boeing.
Most telling thing is the mark for Emerson Electric. Emerson has been in Ferguson for at least 50 years, long before Ferguson became a minority municipality. Yet not only do they mark Emerson they make note of the CEO’s salary. Maybe they’re mutating into an extortion group straight out of the playbook of Jesse Jackson’s Rainbow Push Coalition?
The entire list is on the link, some 50 or 60 offices, businesses, persons. Listed as Potential Action Locations.
I’m all about public protest. It’s a fine, American tradition. Damaging the property of others, or damaging others, however, is beyond the pale.
And I’ve two questions regarding all this brouhaha:
1. Who is sponsoring these protests? Paying for the professionally-made signs, busing protestors to where they will do the most
damage good? Paying for their lodging, food, bail? I certainly wanted to protest for or against certain things in my youth, but was going to school and working full-time. Tough to miss class and get off work to travel to D.C. or wherever to make a political statement!
2. Cui bono? WHO benefits? How is it the Attorney General of the United States visits with the protestors to plan strategies? Shouldn’t he be meeting with City and State law enforcement to plan strategies there? What is wrong with this picture?
It’s as if we’re in Superman’s Bizzaro World!
h/t Jeffery – The Feral Irishman
Or libertarian (small L)?
From Say Uncle:
My wookiee suit is strong but . . .
How do libertarians deal with quarantine? Personally, I accept that I am a rational actor and I’d go all quarantine because I should and am responsible for my actions. But some folks, like patient zero, who is not a libertarian, say I’m looking out for numero uno. Libertarians might just tell you to fuck off but that’s not kosher in the whole “I am responsible for me” thing. What say you?
One answer (of 23 when I viewed it) from his posting:
Of course, no mention is made any longer of the illness(es) being brought ashore by the thousands of
illegal alien children children who came here illegally without parents. This has been relegated to page 24, if it’s on ANY pages at all!
I suspect, as we are not the World’s policeman, we are also not their nanny.
What do you guys think? – Guffaw
They’re with the missing IRS emails! :-)
DC forcing people to reregister and re-finger print gun owners, new fees
DC claims that it lost all the finger prints of everyone who has registered their guns in DC.
Emily Miller has the story available here
I’m reminded of the old ‘Lost Our Lease’ sales of yesteryear. A big window banner says Lost Our Lease. The small print says ‘it was in the top drawer of the desk, yesterday!’
Particularly nice, not only are they ‘required’ to re-register, but they get to pay the fees again. Inefficient AND punitive!
Government at it’s best!
h/t John Lott, Emily Miller
We have been watching Madam Secretary, a new TV show this season on CBS. At first, the idea of the show distressed me, because I was thinking it was a stalking horse for you-know-who, especially if it was produced in the manner of The West Wing (a show some years back with Martin Sheen as the Prez).
Fortunately, it doesn’t appear to a stalking horse. However…
Episode 3 (shown last week) dealt with ethical issues. In short, the Secretary’s husband, a university professor, was placed in the middle of a diplomatic crisis when an American (who was caught spying for the U.S. in Pakistan, from info from a Snowden-like leaker) was scheduled to be executed. The professor could stop the execution by giving a Russian diplomat’s daughter an ‘A’ instead of her earned ‘C’, so the Russian would be convinced to give their version of an American missile to Pakistan (under the table, of course). (Ah, diplomacy!)
The professor’s course was (ironically) in Ethics, and he said he would be violating all he stood for by giving this bribe so the spy’s life would be spared.
The Secretary of State (who was trying to manipulate the Pakistanis, the Russians and her husband) finally convinced her husband he would not violating his ethics if he allowed the Russian’s daughter to take an incomplete (after the approved time for grades), thus her grade point would not be affected, and she could retake the course.
And ultimately, the American would be freed. And he was.
Now, I recognize this is only a television show. And I recognize in the real world, many times things are shades of grey, rather than black and white.
But, this is being sold as okay? Ethical?
At least we know where the ‘real’ Madam Secretary’s ethics stood. She was fired as an attorney on the Watergate Committee for “lying and unethical behavior”.
And the second episode of the TV show was entitled “Another Benghazi”.
Hardly a stalking horse!
Nice photo. That’ll be $1,000, please.
This week’s most profoundly wrongheaded display of nonviolent press infringement comes from an unlikely source: The U.S. Forest Service. New rules being finalized in November state that across this country’s gloriously beautiful, endlessly photogenic, 193 million acres of designated wilderness area administered by the USFS, members of the press who happen upon it will need permits to photograph or shoot video.
And yes, it does sound like one of the dumbest things you’ve ever read.
“It’s pretty clearly unconstitutional,” said Gregg Leslie, legal defense director at the Reporters Committee for Freedom of the Press in Alexandria, Va. “They would have to show an important need to justify these limits, and they just can’t.”
Wait! It gets better.
FIRST, we cannot take photographs of public buildings or structures (because we might be terrorists planning something). Now THIS!
When did we become Germany? (Everything that is not licensed, is FORBIDDEN!)
h/t Free North Carolina
Another (how many in the Administration?) to go!
Attorney General Eric Holder will announce later today his plans to step down, FoxNews.com has confirmed.
One hopes he steps down into a courtroom preparatory to his trial, but I doubt it!
While there ARE
illegal aliens, undocumented workers, freedom-seeking wretched refuse who do enter this nation illegally searching for their American Dream, most are honest, hard-working folk.
Just like the folks who
obeyed the law rules did it the right way. Legally. Right?
How can we tell – who is here with good intent, and who is a
scofflaw smuggler cartel member just trying to have a better life escape?
Colorado (God Bless ‘Em) recently enabled such folks to obtain legal State-Issued driver licenses! Just-in-case they were tempted to do something heinous, the documents were marked with a black band, lest they try to use their new ID to board aircraft, vote, or or enter a federal building unnoticed.
Of course The State (in their infinite wisdom) promptly posted regular Driver Licenses to about 524 applicants with the regular markings – sans the black identifying mark!
To amend their error, Colorado immediately requested such folks return them – even offering a bribe gift card as incentive!
What percentage did their civic duty and exchanged their erroneous ID for legitimate ones?
I see this as a good approximation meter to measure the goodliness of those who have already broken the law to get here. Who knows what else they will do?
h/t Murphy’s Law