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Archive for February, 2013|Monthly archive page

Girl (Storm Troopers) just wanna have fun…

In General Information on February 22, 2013 at 12:11 pm
Lisa Steed, in happier days. (UHP Photo)

Lisa Steed, in happier days. (UHP Photo)

People always expect bad people to have tiny, square mustaches and a bad haircut. We seem to forget that the worst of the worst often have spotless complexions, sparkling eyes, rosey-red cheeks, and perfect smiles. The person in the photo to the left looks deceptively sweet and honest. No matter how outlandish the stories told by such people, juries will give them the benefit of doubt. Put ‘Sweetness and Light’ in the official costumery of the state and a jury could be convinced up is down. Such is among the worst of all evils.

The ‘fairer sex’ is also an equal opportunity oppressor for the state. There are the extreme examples, like the infamous Nazi concentration guard, Ilse Koch (formerly “The Bitch of Buchenwald”) and then there is mere piker, Lisa Steed (formerly of the Utah Highway Patrol). In between, fall the fun-loving Texas trooperettes who enjoyed running their fingers through the pubic hair and into the anuses of female civilians they had detained along the roadside for fun and profit.

According to an Associated Press story that has been widely circulated, former Utah Highway Patrol-ette, Steed had a knack for catching drunk drivers. Her supervisors called her knack ‘an uncanny talent’.

During her ten years as a Utah Praetorian, Steed apprehended more impaired drivers than any male trooper in the history of the patrol. In just one year, Steed black-bagged to jail over five hundred allegedly drunk drivers; more than twice as many as any of her male counterparts.

According to the AP story, many (most) of Steed’s remarkable arrests were entirely bogus. The AP story stated there may be allegations that all of Steed’s drunk driving arrests, way back to 2006, were based on flawed evidence or outright fabrications by Steed.

That would bring the number of Steed’s alleged roadside misdeeds to 1,500.

A 49-page lawsuit has been filed on behalf of many of her alleged victims.

According to an article published in the Salt Lake Tribune (17 December 2012), the Utah Highway Patrol has a tradition of rooting out trooper misconduct, proving self-policing works (if only for the police).

(http://www.sltrib.com/sltrib/news/55451544-78/uhp-complaints-statistics-tribune.html.csp)

Steed is mentioned in the Tribune article as one of 13 Utah troopers found guilty of a minor infraction of Utah laws or patrol policies in only 2010. In Steed’s case, her minor infraction involved her removing her microphone during a field sobriety test of an allegedly impaired driver. That minor infraction led to an investigation that now suggests up to 1,500 motorists had been railroaded by Steed.

Oh, I know, “Okay, Steed may be a bad cop. But the majority of cops are good people doing a hard job.”

Nothing to see here? Move along?

Let’s play some numbers.

From 2009 to 2011, 123 Utah troopers were found to have violated Utah law or department policy. Using the standard that un-apprehended criminals tend to commit crimes repeatedly, each of the 123 troopers may have similarly

Other female troopers, in happier days. (SF Chronicle)

Other female troopers, in happier days. (SF Chronicle)

violated the rights of citizens in numbers close to those alleged against Steed. That’s how probability works.

So, let’s assume the other 122 official misconduct-committing troopers were only half as ambitious as former Trooper of the Year, Lisa Steed. Consequently, we’ll assume they only railroaded 250 motorists per year.

That’s potentially 30,500 innocent citizens who paid fines, sat in jail, or lost jobs, lost spouses, or lost families, but were entirely innocent of all charges.

If the fine for drunk driving were only $1,000, little Lisa hauled in $1,500,000 for state coffers. The 30,500 potential victims of her colleagues could represent almost $31-million in confiscated tribute. Even if the malicious prosecutions were for $100 speeding tickets, Steed’s policy and law breaking buddies could haul in over $3-million.

Willie Sutton was wrong by a mile.

You’d think, with that kind of reputation, the ‘good’ cops would want Steed sweating in an orange jumpsuit as she awaited trial on criminal charges…rather than allowing the civil case plaintiffs to do the heavy lifting. You’d think young prosecutors would be elbowing each other in the face to be the first to file a criminal complaint against her. You’d think her commanders and supervisors would have tents pitched in the young prosecutor’s offices, refusing to leave until a grand jury was convened. You’d think…

But you’d be wrong.

That’s why I don’t think there are any good cops.

University and Iowa sheriff to concealed carry applicants: “You f-cked up. You trusted us.”

In General Information on February 21, 2013 at 3:16 pm

Whenever we object, how many times haven’t we heard some low-IQ government clerk (redundant) or state apologist chirp, “This can never be used except for its intended purpose and by authorized persons”? Go ahead, fill out those forms and sign those waivers. “You can trust us.”

In an article published in today’s Des Moines Register (21 February 2013), investigative reporters reveal how the University of Iowa shared student data with the Johnson County Sheriff. The shared data involved students who had applied to the sheriff for one of Iowa’s ‘shall issue’ concealed carry permits.

The released information contained portions of student records that are prohibited for unauthorized release under the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA).

The involved sheriff, Lonny Pulkrabek, has been historically hostile to the idea of mere serfs being allowed to carry concealed weapons. Prior to the passage of Iowa’s ‘shall issue’ laws, Pulkrabek denied virtually all requests by citizens to be so armed.

According to the article, student applicants for concealed carry permits signed a waiver allowing the sheriff to make inquiries related to criminal activity only. Federal guidelines for FERPA require waivers to be specific to the information requested. In the article-cited cases, the university released whatever the sheriff wanted. The released/requested records contained information about academic failure, student disciplinary matters, or signs of depression. None of which are grounds for the sheriff to decline issuing a permit under Iowa law.

It is doubtful that the sheriff had to browbeat the university or intimidate its staff and leadership to hand over ‘zee paypahs’ of students requesting concealed carry permits. As a ‘center for advanced indoctrination’, the university probably eagerly and cheerfully participated in the records handovers.

Educators (a cruel misnomer) at all levels of indoctrination reflexively wet themselves at the mere mention of ‘g-g-g-guns’.

The article relates how one student learned of the sheriff’s illegal snooping after the dean called him to ask about his intentions to get a concealed carry permit. The article does not say, but the correct student response should have been, “None of your f-ing business.”

It would have been the correct answer, but no self-abasing person who really, really wants to be given the ‘privilege’ of carrying a means of self-defense would have given that answer.

I’m not going to pick on the kid for not being as assertive as I would have been. But, I will take issue with comments made by a former student, Chase Hardin, who was quoted in the article:

“I had no idea I was signing anything like that,” he said, “but does it concern me? No, I’d have to say I have no problem with them looking at grades and things like that. Gun permits are a serious thing, and I think they need to look at whatever information they can get.”

Spoken like a good slave…the state got real value for the education dollars he spent at U of I.

So hurry up and sign up for one of those ‘innocuous’ shall issue carry permits. The line forms over there.

Pushback: Reblogged from Flyover Press

In Re-blogged from Flyover Press on February 21, 2013 at 12:51 pm

[My blizzard is your gain. The weather has placed me under house arrest and thereby allowed me to catch up on my reading. New readers FYI: I put an emphasis on publishing new, original essays and only re-blog something if I think it’s outstanding (like Eric’s piece here). Eric makes a heartening observation and one that should also put libertarians a bit on edge. I’m delighted that the inhabitants of ‘Cloverland’ are beginning to push back. My consternation is found in history. Pushing back almost never motivates the state to fold its tent and go away. Every good tyrant knows they are ‘right’ or that their measures are ‘for the good of the people’. When pushback develops they usually begin killing or rounding up dissidents who are ‘not wise enough’ to go along with the program. Oh well. Like the license plates (ironically) say, “Live free or die.”]

Pushback

By  at Eric Peters Autos

Something very good – though very dangerous to the congealing police state (but not to liberty-minded people) has occurred: Millions of Americans have decided they will not abide by any demand they register their firearms – much less surrender them. And are saying so – openly. More than a few local sheriffs have also publicly stated they will not enforce any such demands. For the first time in living memory, the debate is not fundamentally about which guns – or how many guns. It is about whether the government has any business even knowing whether you’ve got guns at all – much less dictating the type you’re allowed to have.pushback 1It’s a Rubicon moment – because this idea involves a great deal more than merely firearms. It is an assertion – though not fully conscious, yet – that trampling the rights of any individual because of the actions of another individual is an ethical outrage. Not just the right to keep a gun.All rights.The Beat-era author/philosopher William S. Burroughs once quipped: “After a shooting, they always want to take the guns away from the people who didn’t do it.” He said that decades ago and at long last, people are coming to resent being vilified – and punished – not for anything they did. But because some other person did something.Or even worse, because some other person might do something.Group guilt isn’t selling as well as it once did. And the stock people take in individual responsibility seems to be increasing.push 2Perhaps because the orbit of liberty has constricted so dramatically – especially during the past 10 years. Instead of gradually increasing the temperature so that the frog doesn’t notice he’s being boiled alive until it’s too late for him to hop out of the pot, they’ve cranked up the heat suddenly – and the frogs are now aware of what’s happening to them.And beginning to hop…It is no hard think to understand that the average person – merely trying to live his life – is growing weary of being hassled at every turn, treated as a presumptively guilty criminal by authorities that seem unable to recognize, much less respect, any limits to their power. Just as the catcall, “you must be racist” is losing its ability to cow legitimate criticism of such things as open-ended entitlement programs that incentivize multi-generational poverty, so also the tiresome bleats about “safety” and “security” have grown really tiresome. And the frayed edges are beginning to show. hassle 1

I suspect because – unlike in years past – ordinary people are now routinely subjected to hassles and degradations. Whereas in years past – especially in the years before nahnlevven – the typical person could for the most part go about his business without being continually subjected to hassles and degradations. That plus increasingly disproportionate punishments for trivial statutory offenses and non crimes has led to more and more Ordinary Joes and Janes thinking about what’s happening all around them. Perhaps for the first time in their lives.

And once they begin to think, they begin to see.

Consider the etymology of register:

Noun:  An official list or record, for example of births, marriages and deaths…

Verb: Enter a record in an official list as being in a particular category…Italics added.guns 1Now, the eytmology of the prefix, reg:

Latin, rex or king.

Why is it any business of the government’s what you or I or any other citizen happens to have in our closet or bedside drawer? The arrogant presumption – the effrontery – of government (that is, of the people who control the mechanisms of state violence) demanding to know such things is absolutely startling. And not just with regard to guns. Why is it any of the government’s business how many children you have? Or cars?

Or… anything?

Isn’t the sole justification trotted out for the existence of government that it is there to “protect” people? How is a peaceful person in any way “protected” by being ordered to surrender any and every detail of his persona, private affairs to arrogant little busybodies in funny costumes or who possess self-important titles but who are, nonetheless, merely other people? Your next-door neighbor doesn’t demand to inspect your closets, or that you inform him how many and what type vehicles you possess. Because it’s none of his damn business – and he knows it.

So how come the busybodies in government don’t know it? What gives them the right to shove their noses – and their guns – in our business?jedi 1

People are beginning – thank god – to catch on to this. Per Burroughs, they are sick and tired of being hectored for what they didn’t do. And increasingly, they are insisting on their right to be left the hell alone until they – as individuals – actually do something. That is, actually cause injury to someone else. Their property – or their persons. Otherwise, go away.

A termagant is no less a termagant because of its suit, its badge or its title.

We’re mad as hell – finally! – and by god, we’re not going to take it anymore!

Throw it in the Woods?

Shocking News: “Zero Dark Thirty” panned in Pakistan

In Lifestyle on February 20, 2013 at 3:52 pm
Poster: Columbia Pictures

Poster: Columbia Pictures

I find the revelation that Kathryn Bigelow’s sop to the military-industrial-Congressional-banking complex was not well-received in Pakistan to be as shattering as breaking news that water is wet. I’ve not seen the film and I probably will not. Enduring her previous ‘hit’, The Hurt Locker, was painful enough. I escaped by sleeping through over half of it.

I didn’t much care for it.

I’m not just cynical about her movie’s reception in Pakistan. It’s likely Leni Riefenstahl’s Triumph of the Will got a similarly cool reception in Tel Aviv.

I’ve seen some war movies. It’s a bit disquieting to say one is ‘entertaining’. I suppose the Roman games had a similar effect on people.

I’ve not been to war. But I’ve been shot at a few times.

I didn’t much care for it either.

I’ve seen a lot of dead people too. ‘Dead’ as in ‘not prettied up by the mortician yet’, or ‘so bad the mortician puked’. I neither like, nor dislike, being in the company of the dead any more or less than I like, or dislike, being in the company of the living. I don’t think I’d care much for a battlefield full of dead people.

I recall talking to a patient of mine several years ago. He was a WWII lieutenant and was an eye-witness to the Normandy invasion. The movie Saving Private Ryan had just been released and he was skimming my tattered news magazine giving praise to the movie’s beachfront realism. He looked up and said, “It was worse.”

Then, we talked about horses.

I’ve lived a life Blessedly sheltered from the mass violence of war. I don’t feel a bit deprived. Nearly all of the guys I know that went to war envy me. I don’t know how that feels. Thank G-d.

Panned in Tel Aviv

Panned in Tel Aviv

The whole military thing, as practiced, leaves me dry. If someone told me, “Shoot him”, I’d retort “Why?” If the other mook had a lick of sense, he’d ask his commanders the same thing. I have a feeling a lot of people on either side are starting to use the same logic I’m applying.

General Robert E. Lee is exampled as saying, “It is well that war is so terrible, lest we should grow fond of it.” It’s uncertain if General Lee ever said such a thing, but it is nice to imagine.

War is getting less terrible through the miracle of drone warfare and our Dear Leaders exalt in vaporizing their real and imagined enemies by remote control. What kind of carnage will war-profiteers, like Bigelow, show their blood-thirsty audiences? Watching the US missile go down a Baghdad chimney was cool only the first time I saw it. I’d be bored witless if I had to watch it for over two hours.

If war movies float your boat, you’d better get several copies of the old ones. The new ones are going to suck.

 

PD Expounds: Curbside death penalties, US gets better with drones, Concealed carry as a totem

In Editorial on February 20, 2013 at 2:49 pm

It’s been some time since we sat down and talked about ‘stuff’. Go get a beverage (I’ll wait.). Then come back and take a seat in the gallery, for the Phyne Dyner is about to hold forth.

Burn, you guilty bastards…

In his book exploring forgiveness and justice, The Sunflower, Simon Wiesenthal recounts how a dying SS officer confessed to him, his role in murdering a large group of Jews by forcing them into a building and setting it afire. The officer wanted Wiesenthal’s forgiveness, as a Jew, before he died.

He got none.

The SS officer’s crime was horrible, but it is becoming the American standard of justice.

Photo: Eddie Adams

Photo: Eddie Adams

Remember the infamous photograph of the Saigon police chief, Major General Nguyễn Ngọc Loan, as he executed a suspected Viet Cong operator, Nguyễn Văn Lém without trial?

We used to be horrified by those injustices. Today, Americans are singing Anything You Can Do, I Can Do Better.

The Branch Davidian cult of Waco, Texas got no trial. Neither did the paleo-anarchists in Philadelphia’s MOVE ‘compound’. And, most recently, alleged cop-killer Christopher Dorner was denied his right to be judged by a jury of his peers. Those are just the higher profile examples. Almost every day, a criminal suspect is meted out a curbside execution by an American police officer.

Unlike in previous police states, the American press does not parrot the cliché line, “He was shot while trying to escape.” The pass-phrase today is, “He was shot because of concerns for officer safety.”

I presume that a statue portraying the noble “Officer Safety” will be erected as soon as they melt down the obsolete ones of Lady Justice.

Berserk Insane Madbomber claims he has the right to decide an American citizen is a ‘terrorist’ and that he may order him/her to be vaporized in a drone attack. Treason, it is argued, carries the death penalty. Surely, a crime of such severity deserves a trial. A just society does not allow for guilt to be established in secret courts or by executive order.

Besides, isn’t justice one of the freedoms we are told ‘they’ (fill in the blank with almost anyone) hate us for?

At home, a police mob howls, “burn the muther-fcker out”, surrounds the suspect’s lair, and torches it. In a just society, the most heinous murderer deserves a public trial.

Injustice is expedient and cost-efficient. Forgiveness isn’t cheap.

I fear that many American leaders, police, and military personnel, in their final hour, will find themselves similarly situated to the dying SS officer: Begging for forgiveness…

…and getting none.

It is the only justice their victims will receive.

The State of the Union…droned on…and on…

Sandy Hook became a synonym for mass killing. Twenty-six souls took flight during the killer’s rampage.

According to an Associated Press story released yesterday, that’s exactly one hundred fewer than the number of Afghan civilians killed by Murican drones last year.

Photo: SF Chronical

Photo: SF Chronical

But there’s good news too.

When compared to 2011 death tolls, Berserk Insane Madbomber’s war on peace resulted in half the number of dead civilians in 2012.

I doubt the latest figure is much comfort to the families of the one hundred and twenty-six dead ones from 2012.

For your consideration: If each of the dead civilians was survived by only four more Afghans, each…it probably means there are now at least five hundred more Afghans who ‘hate us for our freedom’.

See, we’re winning the war on terror.

Carry on…

I’m not a big fan of concealed carry laws. It bears repeating that, if I truly felt a need, I would carry whatever hand-cannon I fancy without much consideration for the law.

I have no quarrel with people who have a lower threshold of fear and sincerely believe that to carry a concealed handgun is to be prepared. I admit it is possible that armed banditos lurk behind the frozen carrots at the supermarket.

“If you ever need a gun, you’d be glad to have one.”

Fair enough.

But let’s not go ‘out there’ without fully preparing.

In addition to your concealed handgun, take along a fire extinguisher wherever you go. Like armed ambushes by evildoers among the frozen foods, fires can break out anywhere. When it does, it would be nice to have a fire

Photo: Kidde

Photo: Kidde

extinguisher…say, a twenty-pound dry chemical version. That would have real fire stopping power.

Let’s be honest here. Carrying a gun has little to do with ‘safety’ or ‘being prepared’. If that were true, concealed carry advocates would heed my admonishment to pack around a fire extinguisher as well…along with a rope, an inflatable raft, distress flares, etc.

The truth is, carrying a gun has more to do with living in denial of the reality of your slavery.

Bearing arms evokes images of independence, freedom, and self-reliance. Slaves have almost always been prohibited from carrying weapons (unless doing so served the master’s purpose). Despite the reality that Muricans are indeed slaves, being allowed to carry a firearm, outside of service to the master, gives the slave some illusion that he is free. The cruelest irony is that slaves bearing concealed arms by permit deny the fact that they had to beg for permission to carry their freedom totem.

And therein is the inciter of strong emotions among gun owners and people who dutifully line up to fill out forms begging for the state to honor their natural right to defend their lives.

To strip away the gun is to strip away the last illusion that they are free. The gun is a slave’s totem for freedom and this explains the religious fervor displayed by gun owners whenever their totem is threatened with confiscation.

The concealed handgun is not a phallic substitute. It’s a child’s stuffed toy in a dark bedroom. As long as you cling to your ‘Teddy’, everything is okay and you are free.

The state confiscates a portion of your wealth before you even see it, it can conscript your children to die in its legions, it tells you what substances you may put into your body, it defines who you may marry, and it manipulates commerce to its own purposes. Without as much as a ‘by your leave’ you become bound to obey it simply by an accident of birth.

You’re not free and your concealed freedom totem doesn’t make you less of a slave. It just makes it easier to deny the reality of your bondage.

Southeast Asian-style Vegetables and Fish

In Recipies on February 20, 2013 at 1:07 pm

Steaming is an efficient one-pot way to cook an entire meal. Depending on the meal, all of the ingredients may be steamed together. Or, items may be added or removed according to their cooking times. In my kitchen, I either use one of the simple, folding (inside-the-pot) steamers or my tiered electric steamer (Breville). I’m not a fan of the traditional Asian steam baskets that are made out of bamboo. They can be a nightmare to clean and they retain flavors. If you don’t dry them thoroughly or if you store them incorrectly, they mold. The following recipe is fast and easy, even if you are new to steam cookery. Enjoy!

We love the piquant flavors found in Southeast Asian cuisine. This is a fast to prepare meal that offers up those complex flavors with a minimum of cleanup. Serve it in large, pho-style bowls with a minimum of rice.

The fish (or crab/lobster) are fully steamed prior to starting the vegetables and the chili-ginger sauce is prepared while the vegetables are steaming. A bit of rice covers the bottom of large, individual bowls for serving and the vegetable-fish mixture gets gently tossed and placed on top of the rice. Finally, a generous amount of sauce is poured over each steaming bowl.

I found a source of artificial crab and lobster that does not contain shellfish flavorings that are prohibited by our Invisible Friend. It such matters are important to you and you are unable to find acceptable fake crab and lobster, substitute a delicately flavored fish like tilapia. The ersatz crab and lobster has an advantage over substituting fish, it comes already cooked and you merely scatter it over the vegetables before pouring on the delicious sauce.

You’ll need (per two servings):

4 oz artificial crab or lobster (flake style)

1 head bok choy

8-10 scallions, cut into 2-inch pieces (include green parts)

1 carrot, peeled and cut into matchsticks

1 TBS canola or peanut oil

2 TBS Sriracha sauce

2 TBS cooking mirin

2 TBS fish sauce

4 cloves garlic, minced

1 tsp minced ginger (or ½ tsp ground)

2 C (cooked) white rice

Carefully wash the bok choy and cut it into large pieces. Do not chop it. Place the cut carrot in the steamer or steamer basket and lay the bok choy on top. Steam for about six minutes and then lay the cut green onions on top of the bok choy. Steam for an additional 2-3 minutes. The carrots will be slightly crunchy at this stage and the onions will not be wilted and slimy. The bok choy should be just tender and its green leaves wilted.

While the vegetables are cooking, prepare the sauce by heating the oil in a small skillet over medium heat. Stir-fry te garlic until it blooms and then stir in the ginger, Sriracha, fish sauce, and mirin. Reduce slightly until the sauce thickens a bit. Remove from heat.

Lay about ½ cup of cooked rice in the bottom of large bowls. Place a generous helping of vegetables in each bowl and toss gently, being careful not to disturb the layer of rice on the bottom. Gently lay the artificial crab/lobster flakes on top (or steamed tilapia) and spoon the chili-ginger sauce over each bowlful of goodness.

I have also substituted rice noodles and even regular angel hair pasta for the white rice lining the bottom of each bowl. Both substitutions are delicious and authentic.

America has become the Soviet Union as portrayed in old movies

In Re-blogged from Flyover Press on February 8, 2013 at 10:16 am

[Remember how we used to chuckle at movie portrayals of life in the Soviet Union? Travel required ‘papers’. Trials were a mere formality as a prisoner made his way to the gulag. Surly clerks stood behind empty displays and dispensed ‘unavailable’ products to Party elites. Nowadays, nobody’s chuckling. PD]

 

In the 1985 TV movie ‘Gulag’, an American sportscaster ‘Micky Almon’ (played by David Keith) is accused by the Soviet KGB of being a spy and is sent to a gulag. The following dialog takes place between the accused American and the Soviet prosecutor ‘Bukovski’ (played by George Pravda):

Almon: “I won’t sign a confession.”

Bukovski: “And why not?”

Almon: “Because I didn’t do anything. I’m not guilty.”

Bukovski: (Increduloulsly) “What does that have to do with anything?”

We laughed at the Soviet concept of a justice system.

In the 1990 movie ‘Hunt for Red October’ the following dialog takes place between defecting Soviet submarine captains Marco Ramius (played by Sean Connery) and Vasili Borodin (played by Sam Neill):

Borodin: “I will live in Montana. And I will marry a round American woman and raise rabbits, and she will cook them for me. And I will have a pickup truck… maybe even a “recreational vehicle.” And drive from state to state. Do they let you do that?”

Ramius: “I suppose.”

Borodin: “No papers?”

Ramius: “No papers, state to state.”

We laughed at the Soviet concept of ‘freedom to travel’. Look at who’s laughing now.

 

It Has Happened Here

It is extraordinary that so many Americans believe that “it can’t happen here” when it already has.

by Paul Craig Roberts PaulCraigRoberts.org via Lew Rockwell.com

The Bush regime’s response to 9/11 and the Obama regime’s validation of this response have destroyed accountable democratic government in the United States. So much unaccountable power has been concentrated in the executive branch that the US Constitution is no longer an operable document.

Whether a person believes the official story of 9/11 which rests on unproven government assertions or believes the documented evidence provided by a large number of scientists, first responders, and structural engineers and architects, the result is the same. 9/11 was used to create an open-ended “war on terror” and a police state. It is extraordinary that so many Americans believe that “it can’t happen here” when it already has.

We have had a decade of highly visible evidence of the construction of a police state: the PATRIOT Act, illegal spying on Americans in violation of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act, the initiation of wars of aggression – war crimes under the Nuremberg Standard – based on intentional lies, the Justice Department’s concocted legal memos justifying the executive branch’s violation of domestic and international laws against torture, the indefinite detention of US citizens in violation of the constitutionally protected rights of habeas corpus and due process, the use of secret evidence and secret “expert witnesses” who cannot be cross-examined against defendants in trials, the creation of military tribunals in order to evade federal courts, secret legal memos giving the president authority to launch preemptive cyber attacks on any country without providing evidence that the country constitutes a threat, and the Obama regime’s murder of US citizens without evidence or due process.

As if this were not enough, the Obama regime now creates new presidential powers by crafting secret laws, refusing to disclose the legal reasoning on which the asserted power rests. In other words, laws now originate in secret executive branch memos and not in acts of Congress. Congress? We don’t need no stinking Congress.

Despite laws protecting whistleblowers and the media and the US Military Code which requires soldiers to report war crimes, whistleblowers such as CIA agent John Kiriakou, media such as Julian Assange, and soldiers such as Bradley Manning are persecuted and prosecuted for revealing US government crimes. The criminals go free, and those who report the crimes are punished.

The justification for the American police state is the “war on terror,” a hoax kept alive by the FBI’s “sting operations.” Normally speaking, a sting operation is when a policewoman poses as a prostitute in order to ensnare a “John,” or a police officer poses as a drug dealer or user in order to ensnare drug users or dealers. The FBI’s “sting operation” goes beyond these victimless crimes that fill up US prisons.

The FBI’s sting operations are different. They are just as victimless as no plot ever happens, but the FBI doesn’t pose as bomb makers for terrorists who have a plot but lack the weapon. Instead, the FBI has the plot and looks for a hapless or demented person or group, or for a Muslim enraged over the latest Washington insult to him and/or his religion. When the FBI locates its victim, its agents approach the selected perpetrator pretending to be Al-Qaeda or some such and ply the selected perpetrator with money, the promise of fame, or threats until the victim signs on to the FBI’s plot and is arrested.

Trevor Aaronson in his book, The Terror Factory: Inside the FBI’s War on Terrorism, documents that the FBI has so far concocted 150 “terrorist plots” and that almost all of the other “terrorist cases” are cases unrelated to terrorism, such as immigration, with a terror charge tacked on. The presstitute American media doesn’t ask why, if there is so much real terrorism requiring an American war against it, the FBI has to invent and solicit terrorist plots.

Neither does the media inquire how the Taliban, which resists the US invasion and attempted occupation of Afghanistan, fighting the US superpower to a standstill after 11 years, came to be designated as terrorists. Nor does the US presstitute media want to know how tribesmen in remote regions of Pakistan came to be designated as “terrorists” deserving of US drone attacks on the citizens, schools and medical clinics of a country with which the US is not at war.

Instead the media protects and perpetrates the hoax that has given America the police state. The American media has become Leni Riefenstahl, as has Hollywood with the anti-Muslim propaganda film, Zero Dark Thirty. This propaganda film is a hate crime that spreads Islamophobia. Nevertheless, the film is likely to win awards and to sink Americans into both tyranny and a hundred-year war in the name of fighting the Muslim threat.

What I learned many years ago as a professor is that movies are important molders of Americans‘ attitudes. Once, after giving a thorough explanation of the Russian Revolution that led to communist rule, a student raised his hand and said: “That’s not the way it happened in the movie.”

At first I thought he was making a witty joke, but then I realized that he thought that the truth resided in the movie, not in the professor who was well versed in the subject. Ever since I have been puzzled how the US has survived for so long, considering the ignorance of its population. Americans have lived in the power of the US economy. Now that this power is waning, sooner or later Americans will have to come to terms with reality.

It is a reality that will be unfamiliar to them.

Some Americans claim that we have had police states during other wartimes and that once the war on terror is won, the police state will be dismantled. Others claim that government will be judicious in its use of the power and that if you are doing nothing wrong you have nothing to fear.

These are reassurances from the deluded. The Bush/Obama police state is far more comprehensive than Lincoln’s, Wilson’s, or Roosevelt’s, and the war on terror is open-ended and is already three times longer than World War II. The Police State is acquiring “squatter’s rights.”

Moreover, the government needs the police state in order to protect itself from accountability for its crimes, lies, and squandering of taxpayers‘ money. New precedents for executive power have been created in conjunction with the Federalist Society which, independent of the war on terror, advocates the “unitary executive” theory, which claims the president has powers not subject to check by Congress and the Judiciary. In other words, the president is a dictator if he prefers to be.

The Obama regime is taking advantage of this Republican theory. The regime has used the Republican desire for a strong executive outside the traditional checks and balances together with the fear factor to complete the creation of the Bush/Cheney police state.

As Lawrence M. Stratton and I documented in our book, The Tyranny Of Good Intentions, prior to 9/11 law as a shield of the people was already losing ground to law as a weapon in the hands of the government. If the government wanted to get you, there were few if any barriers to a defendant being framed and convicted, least of all a brainwashed jury fearful of crime.

I cannot say whether the US justice system has ever served justice better than it has served the ambition of prosecutors. Already in the 1930s and 1940s US Supreme Court Justice George Sutherland and US Attorney General Robert Jackson were warning against prosecutors who sacrifice “fair dealing to build up statistics of success.” Certainly it is difficult to find in the ranks of federal prosecutors today Jackson’s “prosecutor who tempers zeal with human kindness, who seeks truth and not victims, who serves the law and not factional purposes, and who approaches his task with humility.”

Just consider the wrongful conviction of Alabama’s Democratic governor, Don Siegelman by what apparently was a Karl Rove plot to rid the South of Democratic governors. The “Democratic” Obama regime has not investigated this false prosecution or given clemency to its innocent own. Remember how quickly Bush removed the prison sentence of Cheney’s operative who revealed the name of a CIA undercover agent? The Democrats are a cowed and cowardly political party, fearful of justice, and as much a part of the corrupt police state as the Republicans.

Today the purpose of a prosecution is to serve the prosecutor’s career and that of the party that appoints him or her. A prosecutor’s career is served by high conviction rates, which require plea bargains in which the evidence against a defendant is never tested in court or before a jury, and by high profile cases, which can launch a prosecutor into a political career, as Rudy Giuliana achieved with his frame-up of Michael Milken.

Glenn Greenwald explained how Internet freedom advocate Aaron Swartz was driven to his death by the ambition of two federal prosecutors, US Attorney Carmen Ortiz and Assistant US Attorney Stephen Heymann, who had no aversion to destroying an innocent person with ridiculous and trumped-up charges in order to advance their careers.

It is rare for a prosecutor to suffer any consequence for bringing false charges, for consciously using and even paying for false evidence, and for lying to judge and jury.

As prosecutors are rarely held accountable, they employ illegal and unethical methods and routinely abuse their power. As judges are mainly concerned with clearing their court dockets, justice is rarely served in America, which explains why the US has not only a larger percentage of its citizens in prison than any other country on earth, but also the largest absolute number of prisoners. The US actually has more of its citizens in prison than “authoritarian” China which has a population four times larger than the US. The US, possibly the greatest human rights abuser in history, is constantly bringing human rights charges against China. Where are the human rights charges against Washington?

In America the collapse of law has gone beyond corrupt prosecutors and their concocted false prosecutions. Unless it needs or desires a show trial, a police state does not need prosecutors and courts. By producing legal memos that the president can both throw people into prison without a trial and execute them without a trial simply by stating that some official in the executive branch thinks the person has a possible or potential connection to terrorism, tyranny’s friends in the Justice (sic) Department have dispensed with the need for courts, prosecutors and trials.The Bush/Obama regime has made the executive branch judge, juror, and executioner. All that is needed is an unproven assertion by some executive branch official. Here we have the epitome of evil.

Evidence is no longer required for the president of the US to imprison people for life or to deprive them of their life. A secret Justice Department memo has been leaked to NBC News that reveals the tyrannical reasoning that authorizes the executive branch to execute American citizens on the basis of belief alone without the requirement of evidence that they are terrorists or associated with terrorists.

In “freedom and democracy” America, innocent until proven guilty is no longer the operative legal principle. If the government says you are guilty, you are. Period. No evidence required for your termination. Even Stalin pretended to have evidence.

The United States government is working its way step by step toward the determination that any and every critic of the government is guilty of providing “aid and comfort” to Washington’s “terrorist enemies,” which includes the elected Hamas government in Gaza. The only critics exempted from this rule-in-the-making are the neoconservatives who criticize the US government for being too slow to throttle both its critics and “anti-semites,” such as former US President Jimmy Carter, who criticize the Israeli government’s illegal appropriation of Palestinian lands. Most of Palestine has been stolen by Israel with Washington acquiesce and aid. Therefore, nothing is left for a “two-state solution.”

There is no doubt whatsoever that the Israeli government’s theft of Palestine is illegal; yet, Washington, on which Israel is totally dependent, does nothing about law. Law, we don’t need no stinking law.” Washington has might. Might is right. Get used to it.

Not only for Palestinians has law ceased to exist, but also for Americans, and for Washington’s NATO puppets in the UK and Europe, pitiful remnants of once great nations now complicit in Washington’s crimes against humanity. The Open Society Justice Initiative, a NGO based in New York, has issued a report that documents that 54 governments are involved in Washington’s rendition and torture program. Twenty-five of the governments that help Washington to kidnap, disappear, and torture people are European.

The opening decade of the 21st century has seen the destruction of all the law that was devised to protect the innocent and the vulnerable since the rise of the now defunct moral conscience of the West. The West’s moral conscience never applied outside of itself. What happened to people in Europe’s colonies and to native inhabitants of the US and Australia is a very different story.

Nevertheless, despite its lack of coverage to the powerless, the principle of the rule of law was a promising principle. Now America under Bush and Obama, two peas of the same pod, has abandoned the principle itself.

The Obama police state will be worse than the Bush/Cheney police state. Unlike conservatives who in times past were suspicious of government power, Obamabots believe that government power is a force for good if it is in the right hands. As Obama’s supporters see him as a member of an oppressed minority, they are confident that Obama will not misuse his power. This belief is akin to the belief that, as Jews suffered so much at the hands of Hitler, Israel would be fair to the Palestinians.

Glenn Greenwald writes that “the most extremist power any political leader can assert is the power to target his own citizens for execution without any charges or due process, far from any battlefield. The Obama administration has not only asserted exactly that power in theory, but has exercised it in practice.”

This is the power of a dictator. That Saddam Hussein and Muammar Gaddafi were said to have this power was part of their demonization as “brutal dictators,” a justification for overthrowing their governments and murdering the dictators and their supporters.

Ironic, isn’t it, that the president of the United States now murders his political opponents just as Saddam Hussein murdered his. How long before critics move from the no-fly list to the extermination list?

February 8, 2013

Paul Craig RobertsPaul Craig Roberts

Paul Craig Roberts, a former Assistant Secretary of the US Treasury and former associate editor of the Wall Street Journal, has been reporting shocking cases of prosecutorial abuse for two decades. A new edition of his book, The Tyranny of Good Intentions, co-authored with Lawrence Stratton, a documented account of how americans lost the protection of law, has been released by Random House. Visit his website.

Copyright © 2013 Paul Craig Roberts

Why do ‘foreigners’ understand freedom better than native-born Americans?

In General Information on February 6, 2013 at 10:52 am

“The Second Amendment is a doomsday provision, one designed only for those exceptionally rare circumstances when all other rights have failed.” Henson Ong

 

On 28 January 2013, Henson Ong addressed a Working Group Public Policy Hearing in Hartford, Connecticut. Ong, an engineer by profession, stressed that he is a ‘legal immigrant’ and an ‘American By Choice’. A video of Ong’s statement may be found here: http://youtu.be/NyYYgLzF6zU

Phyne Dyning is publishing a transcript of Ong’s remarks because, while Ong does commendable work with English, there are portions within his address that are a bit difficult to understand without repetition.

I’ll not offer much in the way of commentary, except to say that Mr. Ong ‘gets’ it. Unlike the infestation thriving under the Washington DC Puzzle Dome, the Messiah-in-Chief, or Sauron Feinstein, Ong understands the Second Amendment and its purpose. He not only knows history, he remembers history. He probably ‘gets’ it because he was not in a state-mandated, drugged coma during his education and because we tend to be drawn to ‘forbidden’ things…like the concept that self-defense is a G-d given right, not a privilege allowed or regulated by government.

 

Moderator: “Henson Onj? Followed by [redacted for brevity]

 

Ong: Yeah. Um. My name is Henson Ong. Forgive me. English is not my first language.

I am a legal immigrant and I am an American by choice. Thank you for giving me

this opportunity to express my opinion and give my testimony in opposition to the

majority of the proposed bills, which do nothing to deter future crimes.

 

Gun control does not work. Your own history is replete with, um, high school

rifle teams (and) Boy Scout marksmanship merit badges. You could buy rifles

at the hardware store. You could order them, mail order, delivered to your home.

Your country was awash with readily available firearms and ammunition. And

yet, in your past, you did not have mass school shootings.

 

Other people have already expressed the question, “What changed?”

 

It was not that the availability of guns suddenly exploded or it increased. It

actually decreased. What was changed was societal decay.

 

If gun control actually did work, Washington D.C. and Chicago would be the

safest cities in your nation, but it is not. They have the toughest gun laws and

the highest crime and murder rates.

 

Now, um. Some people have asked, um and, called the AR-15. They called the

AR-15 ‘a weapon of mass killing’. Well, it turns out there are a few government

agencies which disagree with that characterization.

 

The Department of Homeland Security has stated that a rifle chambered in

five fifty-six NATO, with a thirty round magazine, is suitable for personal

defensive use. I have documentation on that. It is HSCEMS-1212-00011,

‘Solicitation for Immigration and Customs Enforcement Agency’.

 

Now, who needs an AR-15 with thirty round mags? That question has also been

brought up. And I would like to put forward that, had the Koreans in the LA riots

not had AR-15s and AK-47s with thirty round magazines, and Ruger 30s, their

businesses would have been burned to the ground like all of the other businesses

in their neighborhoods. Theirs stood because they stood their ground.

 

I would also put forward the conjecture that, had the ten thousand students at

Tienanmen Square not been unarmed, things may not have resulted in so many

of them disappearing.

 

[warning bell ‘ding’ for time]

 

In your own laws, United States versus Miller, 309, US174, 1939, it was made

clear that the type of firearms protected by the Second Amendment, were those

specifically used by and common for military use in defense of the state. I would

like to note that the ‘state’ is not the ‘government’. The ‘state’ is ‘the people’.

 

In Lewis…

 

Moderator: Mr. Ong. If you would please wrap up.

 

Ong: In Lewis versus United States 1980 it is stated that, ‘the Second Amendment

guarantees no right to keep and bear no firearm that does not have some

reasonable relationship to the preservation and efficiency of a well-regulated

militia’. It has nothing to do with hunting.

 

The militia, as per the debates in the (Constitutional) Convention, shows plainly

enough that it is composed of all males physically capable of acting in concert

for common defense. And further, that ordinarily, when called for service, these

men were expected to appear, bearing arms supplied by themselves and of a kind

in common use at the time.

 

Moderator: Mr. Ong, if you would…

 

Ong: The AR-15 is the most common and popular rifle in America at the current time.

 

[warning bell ‘ding’ for time]

 

Moderator: Would you please wrap up.

 

Ong: I will wrap up. I would like to wrap up with a statement from Judge Andrew Kozinski in Silveira versus Lockyer, uh 2003: ‘My excellent colleagues have forgotten these bitter lessons of history. The prospect of tyranny may not grab the headlines the way vivid stories of gun crimes usually do, but few saw the Third Reich coming until it was too late. The Second Amendment is a doomsday provision, one designed only for those exceptionally rare circumstances when all other rights have failed. A free people can only afford to make this mistake once.

END OF HENSON ONG’S STATEMENT

 

Write a letter to congress…and other time-wasting activities

In Lifestyle on February 1, 2013 at 4:02 pm

My friends know me well. Every birthday brings another gift-wrapped book containing lists of little known facts or useless information. My latest birthday treasure was a copy of Ben Schott’s “Schott’s Sporting, Gaming, & Idling Miscellany”. The opening pages offer this advice from Jerome K. Jerome (1859-1927) to idlers everywhere: “It is impossible to enjoy idling thoroughly unless one has plenty of work to do.” I, therefore, offer Phyne Dyners my perception of the value of writing to congress.

 

Every day, I am deluged with exhortations from past and present friends who still, despite the facts in front of them and of which they bitch and moan daily, believe that congress works for them.

The exhortations come from nice folk heeding the admonitions of the National Rifle Association, Gun Owners of America, and Jews for the Preservation of Firearm Ownership. “Write to your congressman today. Copies of suggested letters are attached to this email for your use.”

There is a scene in Steven Spielberg’s 1994 Holocaust tribute, Shindler’s List, where Oskar Schindler (played by Liam Neeson) is cajoled by Amon Goeth (played by Ralph Finnes) as Schindler drags water hoses with which to give water to the Jews locked in sweltering cattle cars, destined to be gassed to death immediately upon their arrival at Auschwitz:

“Oh, Oskar! Now that is really cruel. You’re giving them hope.”

People who write letters to congress should pay heed to that scene. If you still believe writing your representatives has any value, I will tell you that, if you ask them nicely, hookers on Detroit’s east side will give you a discount on their services. I say that at the risk of putting congress and whores on the same moral level. Nothing of the sort was intended and if readers misread my intent, I offer my apologies to the girls of East Detroit.

Colonoscopies, cockroaches, and lice are more popular with Americans than is the current infestation under the D.C. Puzzle Dome. By best estimates, congress is popular with 8 to 18 percent of us. Their ineptitude is legendary. Their corruptness is documented. But, still, some of you cling to hope.

“Ask your representative…”

No. I shall not.

I do not ask that my rights, especially enumerated ones, be respected by criminals who differ only from muggers, rapists, and child-molesters by the fact they pursue their crimes subsequent to an ‘election’.

If the system worked (it stopped working decades ago), citizens would simply tell their rampaging representatives “Pass whatever you like. I won’t obey.”

I’ve opened a lot of files purported to ‘send a message’ to Washington’s infestation. Not one of them said, “I will not obey.” Virtually all of them are written in lobbyist weasel-speak. Not one of them has had a resolute and unshakable tone.

“Senator, I urge you to remember that hunting, competitive shooting, and gun collecting have been an American tradition and I hope you’ll vote ‘no’ on any legislation that would restrict Americans from those hobbies. Thank you. Your obedient servant…”

Fuck me raw.

On 5 March, we will mark the 243rd anniversary of the Boston Massacre. For those of you who were Ritalin riddled or Adderall addled during your mandatory thirteen years of indoc training, I’ll summarize the event:

On the evening of 5 March, a British soldier (Pvt. Hugh White) was standing guard outside of the Custom House on King Street. Edward Garrick, a young wigmaker’s apprentice, called out to the officer of the guard, John Goldfinch, that his bill was overdue. Private White told Garrick to remember his station and to be more polite to Officers of the Crown. As closing punctuation for his advice to Garrick, White struck Garrick in the head with his musket. Garrick and White exchanged further insults and a crowd gathered. The crowd grew in number and became more taunting and belligerent. They began to challenge White, who had cried out for assistance, to fire on them. The crowd began pelting the responding soldiers with snowballs. A hurled object struck one Pvt. Montgomery, knocking him down and knocking away his musket. The crowd began taunting Montgomery to fire. Montgomery complied by firing a shot. Montgomery’s fellow soldiers, arranged in a semi-circle facing the mob fired a ragged volley into the crowd. Ultimately, six American colonists perished and the incident became a pivotal rallying point for the colonial rebellion.

For those of you insisting me to write useless letters to congress, let’s look at today’s environment for similarities to Boston in 1770.

Go to any nearby federal building, state courthouse, or airport and raise your middle finger in the direction of the goons manning the ‘security checkpoint’. For extra fun, cry out something political like, “Death to those who would confiscate privately owned firearms!” or “Occupy Wall Street!”.

At this stage, it’s fairly certain that one of the goons will dismount his post and order you to shut up and behave. The goon will then detail what proper behavior is expected of you as a Commoner and how he is the sole judge of your conduct. He will detail that, although your cries may be political in nature, he will decide if you may make them. After all, you are not likely to be within a government-approved ‘free speech zone’.

Now, up the ante a bit. Have your friends come to your emotional aid by shouting down the dismounted goon. Hurl a few insults. “Bad cop! No doughnut for you!”

The goon will whisper something about ‘backup’ into the microphone on his armored shoulder and, within moments (faster than if you called for 911 assistance), he will be emboldened by the presence of more uniformed accomplices. Now safe in numbers, the uniformed heroes will pinion you on the ground and in punctuation for their barked orders for you to “stop resisting” they will pummel you senseless.

[Even if one of the goons is a Loaf Beater and a ‘sworn guardian of three-for-a-dollar day-old convenience store wieners’ you must remind yourself that he has been perfectly content to enforce every edict handed to him thus far. He is there to enforce the law (no matter what law), protect himself, and protect his fellow goons. And, there, the list of his duties has ended every day thus far. You expect him to stand down now?]

Let’s suppose some of your merry band of dissidents decides for a historic reenactment and they begin pelting the response team with gently packed snowballs. What then?

Tasers? Mace? Batons? Flash-bang? Dogs? (The female enforcers will find themselves getting moist.)

A crowd begins to gather in your support. (I know. We’re just mentally masturbating at this point.)

A bottle flies through the air, striking one of the goons. “An assault on one of the king’s men is an assault on the king himself.”

Someone in the crowd ignites a package of firecrackers. In dutiful protection of that most vaunted of police mental health needs, “officer safety”, the fallen and humiliated officer fires into the crowd. Fellow officers identify ‘threats’ and use deadly force to neutralize them.

The uninvolved guy walking home from band practice with his uncased oboe becomes a ‘terrorist’ carrying ‘what could have been an RPG’. Even though the goons are paid (and allegedly highly trained) to ‘know’ what is (or is not) a threat, they will defend their lethal response with ‘we never know’. Later, a perfumed and coifed member of the newscaster class will cluck and shake her head in solemn agreement.

The crowd flees in panic. The goons gather around their leadership to get their stories straight.

So, how is my scenario any different than the one that transpired in March of 1770? Being angry at identical treatment today is ‘premature’ and ‘unhelpful’?

Let’s do one more experiment. This one can be accomplished without any risk of personal injury or deprivation of freedom of movement or loss of financial resources.

Write to your representative(s) at the local, state, or federal level and object to being treated like a criminal if you were to act out in defiance as in our scenario or as any number of peaceful protesters have done in recent years.

What will be their response?

If you suppose they care about your Second Amendment rights, they should probably care with equal enthusiasm for your right to assemble and your right to speak your grievances with the government wherever and whenever you choose. That means you’ll get a return letter thanking you for your dutiful exercise of your rights and an encouraging statement or two saying they’ll tell their enforcers to be respectful and restrained in all such encounters.

Tell yourself you won’t get a letter, chiding you to behave in the presence of an enforcer, to be respectful of your elected betters, and reminding you how ‘order’ is necessary for our democracy to work. (Never mind that it quit working decades ago.)

Congress is on your side. They listen. They care about your rights. That’s why congress is held in such high esteem by Americans.

It’s a cruel thing, false hope.

City Criminals and The War on Poverty: Latest news from the front

In Editorial on February 1, 2013 at 11:07 am

It’s been some time since Phyne Dyning focused its bleary, jaundiced eyes on local issues. Today, we’ll take a peek at local criminal activity by the Swells. We’ll also look at how Central Iowa is being diligently protected from the poor.

 

Hey Buddy, can you spare $40 million?

In 2008, Commoner Lisa Kragnes sued the City of Des Moines over its collection of ‘a dollar here, a dollar there’ as an illegal tax deliberately mislabeled as a ‘franchise fee’. The city had been assessing the fee, illegally added to utility bills, since 2004. The court agreed with Kragnes that the fee was an illegal tax and that the money, then $35 million, must be returned to the Commoners from which it had been illegally seized.

The Swells over at City Hall were outraged. They lambasted Kragnes in the press as an uninformed meddler who did not appreciate the import and the necessary nature in levying an illegal tax so the Swells could ‘do good things’ with the purloined loot.

Crime Scene (Royalty-free Stock Photo)

Crime Scene (Royalty-free stock photo)

The tax was levied, they claimed, “to hire more police and firefighters, maintain the library’s hours, and rehabilitate deteriorating neighborhoods”. Their motives, they claimed, were good, pure, and in the public interest. They so-appealed to the Iowa Supreme Court, which agreed with the trial court that the money must be returned.

The Iowa Supremes logically saw no difference between the city’s illegal tax and the actions of a robber who shoves a pistol into the belly of a convenience store clerk, steals the store’s money, and gives the loot to a homeless shelter.

The City Hall Swells again howled in outrage. Having to return the stolen money would bankrupt the city. So, they appealed to the United States Supreme Court.

The Supreme Court denied the city’s write for petition of certiorari and the Swells played their ultimate chutzpah card: they promised to punish city residents with property tax increases and decreased city services (always in the form of reduced fire, EMT, and police patrols). Unless they were allowed to keep the illegally seized loot, the Visigoths and Vandals would sweep through the city gates and ravish it.

The public was unimpressed. The Swell’s argument held about the same amount of water with them, as did a mugger’s plea that returning a purloined watch would cause him immeasurable and continuing hardship.

“Give the money back”, the Commoners cried. The amount owed to the commoners had grown to $39.5 million.

As with all criminal syndicates, the problem-solving ingenuity of the City Hall Swells is not limited by morals or ethics.

This week, according to the official news organ of all things State (The Des Moines Register), the Swells had another plan. The article detailed how unnamed Swells had provided local real estate moguls with letters and cheerfully asked the moguls to sign zee pay-pahs. But what did the papers say?

The papers said that the moguls had agreed to waive their entitlement to the court ordered refund of their portion of the stolen loot.

It was a brilliant move. The City Hall Swells thought the real estate Swells would not mind being gang-raped in the prison shower. After all, it would be consensual Swell-to-Swell intercourse. Once the City Hall Swells had lined up their fellow Swells as marks, the Commoners would fall into line, forgive the City Hall Swells their trespasses, and willingly decline their refunds out of misplaced civic duty.

Unfortunately for the professional predators in the ranks of the City Hall Swells, the real estate Swells were adverse to involuntary buggery and declined the city’s offer. The letters found their way into the hands of reporters at the Register.

The names of the City Hall Swells responsible for button-holing (and intended corn-holing) the real estate Swells were dutifully redacted by the Register to “city leaders” and “officials”. The names of the real estate Swells receiving the letters were, of course, dutifully published for all to see.

Polk County Senior Judge Joel Novak was not amused by the city’s foot-dragging and ongoing machinations to avoid issuing overdue refund checks to the Commoners and ordered the city to proceed with printing them up. That’s nice, but it is not a full victory for the Commoners.

Commoners will not be treated to 9 o’clock news footage of “city leaders” and “officials” doing the perp-walk in orange jump suits, as befits any thief. They will skate by, just like the criminals who signed off on implementing the illegal tax.

Why?

Being a Swell is, well, swell. It is why criminals run for office.

Meanwhile, those who ‘Protect and Serve’ are protecting us from…

The homeless and the poor.

Evidence of state failures (Photo: WHO TV)

Evidence of state failures (Photo: WHO TV)

The City Hall Swells cannot abide homeless people (people who provide their own living accommodations without purchasing or renting them from government-approved sources). During the coldest week of the past January, the City Swells embarked to evict anyone living outside of approved domiciles (e.g. under a bridge).

The various homeless camps throughout the city would be evacuated and the camps dismantled.

“But I’m not homeless”, properly declared one camper. He displayed his neatly kept campsite, firewood piled in tidy fashion next to his tarp-reinforced tent. A few propane canisters stood safely distant, donated by churches sympathetic to the down and out.

The City Swells cited public safety as their reason for liquidating the city’s very own public display that the State cannot care for the poor as promised. The Swells cited concerns from fellow Swells walking the city’s neatly groomed bicycle paths (paid for with confiscated cash) about pan-handlers and a sighting of a homeless man ‘holding a machete’.

As the temperatures plummeted, support for the homeless soared. Commoners, themselves just a paycheck from homelessness, complained about the inhumanity in the intent of the Swells to make Des Moines homeless-rein and impoverished-frei during the coldest week of the year.

The Swells backed off. Their enforcers denied there was any intent (for now) to deploy truncheon-swinging goons into the camps to enforce the edicts. The Swells decided to re-group and plan for later aktions over the $10 martinis served at trendy bistros on Court Avenue, conveniently located nearby City Hall.

Eeeek, a pan-handler!

Windsor Heights Kamera Kar tribute extractor (Photo: WHO TV)

Windsor Heights Kamerakar tribute extractor (Photo: WHO TV)

Meanwhile, in the nearby Des Moines suburb of Windsor Heights, police manpower has been freed from issuing their infamous demands for highway tribute by deploying their automated enforcement kamerakar. The demands for highway tribute are infamous because the city, home to a Hy Vee grocery, Sam’s Club, and a crumbling Wal Mart, vigorously enforces its notorious 25mph speed limit.

Windsor Heights had earlier sought to increase their take of tribute by installing speed-kameren along the berg’s couple of hundred yards of interstate. The move was slapped down by state officials motivated to protect tribute kollection down the road a mile or two by kameren deployed by the Swells in the City of Des Moines.

Having evaded cries of ‘unfair’ by Swells down the road by using a mobile kamerakar instead of fixed-location kameren, what did the leaders of the fun-sized Windsor Heights Police Department do with all of their spare time?

Taking their lead from the Swells down the highway, they set out on their own campaign to make Windsor Heights poverty-frei by harassing the panhandlers begging alms along the private road bordering the local Wal Mart and Sam’s Club.

The goons are diligent in their pursuit of keeping me safe from poor people.

Every time I pass by the location, I have seen some poor mook holding a cardboard sign descended upon by the local poverty-politzei. The goon demands identification and encourages the beggar to move along. Those daring to give alms are chased down and given a jackboot-view lecture on the proper care and feeding of the poor.

There really is a War on Poverty

The Swells contend that Commoners, like Lisa Kragnes, simply do not understand the holy mission of the Swells. The Swells have been appointed by themselves to ensure for prosperity. When they fail, they sweep their failings under a rug that is already lumpy from their other failures.

When a poor person visibly begs alms, it betrays the impotence and incompetence of the Swells. Therefore, the visible poor must be eliminated. Nothing shields incompetence better than brutality. When the poor and the homeless are ‘evacuated’ from cities, the gullible can be made to believe the cities are prospering.

Then, now reassured that their city is prospering (via the absence of poor people), the Commoners can be fleeced for higher taxes and illegal fees for the Swells to piss away on pet projects for fellow Swells.

It is what it is.